Steps to buying your first house

We’re dedicated to helping you into your first home sooner. That’s why we’ve designed this guide to give you clarity and confidence around how to buy your first home in Queensland. Follow our tips and get into the property market with your own slice of paradise. 

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    Planning to buy a house

    Before you look for the perfect property it’s good to know what you can borrow and how much you’ll repay each month. Our online calculators use your income and expenses to help give a guide on your borrowing power.

    We recommend downloading a copy of our Home Buyers Guide to help you buy your first home. It's full of great advice and tips on budgeting, choosing a loan, house hunting and more.

    Download the Home Buyers Guide

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    Understand the costs of buying

    When you’re a first time home buyer you’ll usually start by getting your deposit ready. To help you along the way we’ve put together some advice and tips on saving for a deposit. Having a clear budget and knowing what you’ll need to save can help you reach your deposit faster.

    When you’re on a budget it’s worth knowing all the extra costs involved in buying a house so there’s no surprises later on. We’ve got info on some of the most common costs you could end up paying to help you plan in advance.

    • Lenders Mortgage Insurance LMI is a one-off insurance payment which you may need to pay if you have a smaller deposit.
    • Lending fees Costs like loan establishment, setup and annual fees may be added to your home loan. They may be a once-off fee or could be annual payments on the life of the loan.
    • Stamp duty or transfer duty Stamp duty, called transfer duty in Queensland, is a tax levied by all Australian territories and states on property purchases. The amount a buyer pays is based on the property purchase price, location and loan purpose. Some states charge different rates on investment properties than on places of residence.
    • Moving costs
    • Legal and conveyancing fees
    • Building and pest inspection
    • Utilities and connections
    • Home and contents insurance

    Home buying tip!
    Get a bigger deposit with the First Home Buyer Grant. To see if you qualify and to find out more on buying your dream home, read our article on the home loan process.

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    Pre-approval

    Once you have an idea on how much you can borrow, chat to a lending consultant and get pre-approval for your home loan. Securing pre-approval is a super smart move as it clarifies your borrowing power, what you’ll repay and helps you search for a house in your budget. Pre-approval is free and valid for up to 3 months. This gives you plenty of time and confidence to find your dream first house.

    Enquire about pre-approval Download fact sheet

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    Get your first home loan

    If you have pre-approval and you’ve found a house you love, getting a home loan is your next big step. After you complete the contract of sale, usually including time for finance approval and building and pest inspections, it’s time to get in touch with your bank. Once the bank completes all their checks you’ll get written confirmation you’re approved for your home loan.

    Home loan interest rates

    You’ll be able to choose whether you’d like a home loan with a fixed interest rate, variable rate or a combination of the two with a split loan. Each type of loan has its own pros and cons and both can save you a bit of money. If you're after a little more reassurance it may be worth locking in your interest rate. If you’re after flexibility and extra features, check out a variable loan. For a little more information read our page on home loan interest rates and pick the one best for you.

    Compare home loans 

    Bundle your home loan and save

    Get a bonus 15% off* your RACQ Home and Contents Insurance for the life of your home loan when you take out a new home loan with RACQ Bank.

    Learn more

  • The buying process

    When you’re a first time home buyer there’s a lot of new documents you may not have seen before and it can all get a bit confusing. Remember, this is a legal process so everything needs to be ticked and signed to make the transaction run smoothly. It’s a good idea to get professionals around you who you can trust and who can offer guidance when you need it.

    Hire the right professionals

    Get all your ducks in a row and speed up the buying process with professionals you can count on. Find trustworthy specialists and know what you’ll be paying before you hire them.

    Building and pest inspector

    They'll check the house is in good nick and identify if there's any pest problems before you buy. If you get a conditional purchase inspection the same company may even give you a discount on treating pests once you're in the house. If you're not totally happy with the findings you could have the house remedied, buy it at a lower price, or decide not to go ahead with the purchase. It's a good idea to chat with your solicitor who can help you with this process.

    Solicitor or conveyancer

    These legal professionals act on your behalf, make sure the contract is complete and perform title checks so everything is legit.

    Lending consultant

    Your lending consultant will walk you through your home loan application. They'll get your home loan approved, set up your mortgage and will be your 'go-to' contact at your bank.

    Movers

    You may be able to do it all yourself or you can hire a mover and have reassurance you won’t be stuck lifting anything too heavy.

    Home and contents insurance

    Consider getting home and contents insurance once the contract goes unconditional. It’s this extra reassurance that helps if anything unexpected pops up.

    What happens at settlement

    When it comes to settlement there’s a few things to cover off. From real estate agents, solicitors, sellers and purchasers, there’s a lot of different parties who all will all work together on your purchase. On settlement day your bank will follow the direction of the solicitors and will transfer money from your bank account to the sellers account once all the conditions on the contract have been met. Once the funds have been transferred you’ll be able to pick up the key to your new home and start to move in!

    Home buying tip!
    Get a building and pest inspector around before you buy. They’ll check the property is structurally sound and free of pests that cause damage, like termites.

     

Your RACQ Bank Home Loan comes with RACQ membership~~

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Make more room in your home furnishings budget
Enjoy 10% in store at Amart Furniture.
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Scoop up great value moving deals
Head to Store Local for 10% off storage and 15% off packaging.
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Start saving at the supermarket
Take 4% off the price of Woolworths eGift cards.
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Feel good giving back to Queensland communities
Your membership supports the RACQ Foundation’s natural disaster relief grants.

More about home buying

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Home insurance
Protecting your home and possessions gives you confidence knowing that if disaster strikes, you’re covered.
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Member discounts
When you choose RACQ Bank, you’re welcomed into Queensland’s largest club. 
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Home Rescue
With RACQ Home Rescue you get peace of mind knowing that one call gives you fast access to trusted tradies covering a range of Home Emergencies.

Things to note

Banking and loan products issued by Members Banking Group Limited ABN 83 087 651 054 AFSL/Australian credit licence 241195 trading as RACQ Bank. Terms, conditions, fees, charges and lending policies apply. This is general advice only and may not be right for you. This information does not take your personal objectives, circumstances or needs into account. Read the disclosure documents for your selected product or service, including the Financial Services Guide and the Terms and Conditions, and consider if appropriate for you before deciding.

Except for 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.

Insurance products (excluding Travel Insurance and the Life and Income Protection Insurance suite of products) are issued by RACQ Insurance Limited ABN 50 009 704 152 (RACQ). Conditions, limits and exclusions apply. This is general advice only and may not be right for you. This information does not take your personal objectives, circumstances or needs into account. Read the PDS and any applicable Supplementary PDS before making a purchase decision on this product. You can also access our Target Market Determinations on this website.

~~ Terms and conditions apply to all offers. View the individual offer for full details. Offer is subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time without notice.

* Home Bundle Terms and Conditions

  1. Subject to the further terms and conditions below, the Home Bundle gives eligible RACQ Bank customers a 15% discount off combined Home and Contents Insurance, Home Building Insurance or Contents Insurance for the life of any eligible home loan.
  2. The 15% discount on Home and Contents Insurance, Home Building Insurance or Contents Insurance available under the Home Bundle offer will only be applicable for insurance that is to cover the asset which is subject of the eligible home loan taken out under this offer only.
  3. Subsequent to the initial policy being taken out, if the member makes any policy changes which require an additional premium, that premium will need to be paid by the member.
  4. The Home Bundle promotional offer is valid for new RACQ Bank home loan customers only. Offer is available until further notice, subject to change without notice and may be withdrawn at any time. Acceptance of the offer is optional.
  5. Valid for Investment or Owner Occupier, residentially secured home lending products only. Not available for businesses or companies. Lending terms, conditions, fees, charges and lending criteria apply. View our Loan rate schedule and fee schedule for a full list of RACQ Bank’s home loan rates, fees and charges.
  6. Please refer to the Things to note section for information on RACQ Bank Home Loans which are eligible for the Home Bundle promotional offer.
  7. The Home Bundle offer is not available to RACQ staff members.
  8. For refinanced home loans from other banks, Home and Contents Insurance policies will be created at or after loan is unconditionally approved.
  9. For property purchases, policies are to be created once purchase contract is signed or at loan submission, however Home Loan plus Home and Contents Insurance discounts are conditional on the home loan funding within 90 days of the date of the submitted application.
  10. Policyholders who already hold at least one insurance policy issued by RACQ Insurance Limited, may be eligible for a range of discounts, for the full breakdown of discounts please visit racq.com. After the deduction of any available discounts, a further discount of 15% will be deducted to calculate the final premium. The calculated premium may then have additional taxes and charges applied. The Home Plus 15% discount offer is not available in conjunction with the online application discount of $75 for Home and Contents Insurance.
  11. Insurance products (excluding Travel Insurance and the Life and Income Protection Insurance suite of products) are issued by RACQ Insurance Limited ABN 50 009 704 152 (RACQ). Conditions, limits and exclusions apply. This is general advice only and may not be right for you. This information does not take your personal objectives, circumstances or needs into account. Read the PDS, and any applicable Supplementary PDS before making a purchase decision on this product. You can also access our Target Market Determinations on this website.
  12. Refer to the Things to note section of this page for RACQ Bank Home Loan disclaimers including the comparison rate warning.