Congratulations! You’re in the market for your first home. This is such an exciting time and you’re making a really positive step in your future. To help you along the way, we’ve pulled together a handy guide so you can confidently buy your first home in Queensland.
Saving a decent sized deposit helps you in two ways. First up, it shows you’re financially responsible. By saving a deposit you’ve proven you know how to budget and that you’ll easily meet your mortgage repayments. Secondly, a bigger deposit opens more lending opportunities so you can get a better deal and save money. The larger your home deposit is the less likely you’ll need mortgage insurance and the less debt you’ll take on.
Plan your budget
Talk to a mortgage broker or lending specialist who can help you understand the costs of buying your first home. They’ll also be able to tell you how much you can afford with your size deposit, including how much your repayments will be each month. Having a firm budget lets you know straight away how much you can spend so you can get to the exciting part of finding the right house.
First home owners grant
The Government looks out for first home buyers and offers a grant that can really help with your deposit. There’s some criteria that needs to be met, but you can easily check whether you’re eligible on the Government First Home Owner Grant website. When you’re applying for a home loan, just apply for the grant at the same time through your lender.
Some of us want to renovate a home to maximise profit, others want a new house that they can just move in and enjoy. Think as an investor - will you make money on this property if you sell it in two years? Are you able to rent it out easily if it doesn’t sell? Do you want to be closer to the city, or closer to a beach? Check out the suburb profiles on realestate.com.au which will help you find the best suburbs for your budget. You’ll even get information on recent sales in the area.
It’s worthwhile paying for building and pest inspections before buying a house. These let you know if the home is in good condition, or if it needs work done. Sometimes your bank will get them done so they can check you’re not overpaying.
Making an offer
You’ve done a lot of research you have a clear budget, now it’s time to make an offer. Be confident and make a fair offer under the asking price and see how it’s received. There’s often a bit of negotiating but don’t be daunted - just stick to your budget. Sometimes an agreement can’t be reached, but stay positive. There’s plenty of other homes out there and just think how much you’ve learnt for next time round!
If you’re buying at auction you’ll have a clear budget and the process is similar to making an offer. If you need any help, see if you can use a buyers’ agent who can work with you.