When you’re buying your first home, or making a move from your current one, we know that getting a home loan can be confusing. We can help explain the steps in the home loan process from beginning to end so you can relax and find the right house to suit your life in Queensland.

Couple being shown house by agent

Know what you can afford

Have a chat to your lender. They can let you know what your repayments will be based on your borrowing capacity and will help you make a budget so you can save for a deposit.


Conditional approval

Unconditional approval

Save a deposit

Once you know your budget, save up for your home deposit. If you save less than 80% of the property price you may need to pay Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI). If you need LMI it will be added onto your mortgage so you’ll be borrowing a little bit more and making repayments on that additional amount.

If you already own a home, you may be using the equity in your current home as your deposit. If so, just make sure that you’ve spoken to your lender so you know your borrowing capacity.

If you’re selling your current home to fund a new one try to settle before, or at the same time as your new house.

If you’ve already saved a large deposit, you may be able to go unconditional straight away.

First Home Owner Grant

Check out the First Home Owner Grant website and see if you’re eligible to apply for extra help from the government. You can apply for this when you apply for your mortgage.

If you already own a home you may not qualify to receive the FHOG.


If this is your first home, check out the FHOG website to see if you’re eligible to receive extra help.


Once you’ve got your deposit sorted you may want to get conditional pre-approval. This means you complete some paperwork with your lender and they’ll agree to pre-approve your finance, up to a certain limit. This pre-approval usually comes with some conditions like a bank valuation. Your lender will let you know how long this pre-approval will last, but usually it’s up to 90 days.

Have a chat to your lender to see how much you can afford, based on your deposit.

Find a house you love

Conditional offer

Unconditional offer

Make an offer

Make an offer based on your individual circumstances. You may need to receive a valuation from the bank, or have a building and pest inspection done. These can be the terms of your offer. If you’ve got a solicitor or conveyancer, put down their names on the contract of sale – otherwise you can add these details in later.

You can make an offer with no conditions. If you’re buying at auction you’ll need to be in a cash position (also known as unconditionally approved). If you’ve got a solicitor or conveyancer, put their names down on the contract of sale – otherwise you can add these details in later.

Contract of sale

You will make your offer in a written contract of sale. This contract will specify all the terms and conditions (above) and will also include the settlement date, the deposit amount and the names of the parties selling and buying.

Offer accepted



You’ll need to pay a deposit to secure your home. This can be paid directly to the real estate agent office and they’ll keep hold of it until settlement.


If you didn’t have a solicitor or conveyancer at the time you made the offer, find one now and ask them to work with you. You’ll need to provide the contract of sale to them and they’ll work on your behalf to meet the contract obligations.


Conditional offer

Unconditional offer

Terms met

If your offer was subject to finance the bank will look back through your finances and make sure you can afford the house.

The bank may want to do a valuation on your new home and you’ll have a set number of days for the bank to organise this with the real estate agent.

If you made your offer subject to a building and pest inspection your contract will specify how long you have to get these done. You can organise this with building and pest companies and the real estate agent.

You’ve got no terms like building and pest or finance, so once the sellers sign the forms you're one step closer to moving in.

Be sure to chat to your lender before you make an unconditional offer so you know your borrowing capacity.


Once you’ve met all the terms of your offer, your bank will re-assess your finances and you’ll be unconditional.

Loan documents

Your loan documents will arrive and you’ll need to read through and sign them all. You’ll usually do this with your lender.


Your solicitor or conveyancer will be working behind the scenes completing the necessary searches and land title forms the bank requires prior to settlement. If you have any problems, go straight to them and they can advocate on your behalf.


You have the opportunity to complete a pre-inspection of the house a few days before settlement. This doesn’t always happen and some people don’t require it. Just speak to the real estate agent if it’s something you’d like to do.


Your contract will state the date your new home settles. Your solicitor and conveyancer will work directly with the lender to move the funds from the purchaser’s account (yours) into the sellers.

Moving day

Settlement day is usually moving day. Ordinarily, the sellers of the house have until midday to drop off their keys to the real estate office and to vacate the house. The real estate office will contact you when you can pick up your new house keys and you’ve got the green light to move in!


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The information provided is intended as general information only and may not be appropriate for you. This information does not take your personal objectives, circumstances or needs into account and you should obtain financial and legal advice before making any decisions. Read the disclosure documents for your selected product or service, including the Financial Services Guide and the Terms and Conditions, before deciding. 

RACQ Bank loans and banking products are issued by Members Banking Group Limited ABN 83 087 651 054 AFSL and Australian credit licence 241195 trading as RACQ Bank.
Except for Members Banking Group Limited ABN 83 087 651 054 AFSL and Australian Credit Licence 241195, trading as RACQ Bank (RACQ Bank), any RACQ entity referred to on this page is not an authorised deposit-taking institution for the purposes of the Banking Act 1959 (Cth). That entity’s obligations do not represent deposits or other liabilities of RACQ Bank. RACQ Bank does not guarantee or otherwise provide assurance in respect of the obligations of that entity, unless noted otherwise.