- Get an independent building report before you buy
Know what you are buying. It may look solid and sound, but looks can be deceptive. It is also easy for homeowners to cover up problems in the short term. An independent builders report will cost you money in the short term but may save you thousands in the long term or even save you from buying a disaster. Make sure you get a report from someone who isn’t working for the real estate agent!
- Don’t believe the real estate agent
The job of real estate agents is to sell the home to get a good price for the seller, not the buyer. They will do what they can to leave a good impression of the home, the owners, and the value of the property. If they start talking you out of things such as builder’s report, or suggesting that your concerns are a sleight on the Seller’s character, or they very quickly cover parts of the house, or tell you something isn’t necessary, be wary! Be suspicious! Be assertive. Check it out.
- Don’t believe the seller
People selling houses are like the real estate agents; they want to sell their home. For example, don’t believe it when they tell you that tree roots etc will be removed before you move in. If it’s not in the contract, then don’t believe it.
- Put plenty of time aside
Don’t be impatient to find the right home immediately. Sometimes it can take months (or even years). At any one stage there will be fewer than 10% of homes on the market, and there might only be 1%. That’s a lot of homes which may come up in the future.
- Check out the area
Is it important for you to be near a shopping centre, corner store, entertainment, schools, public transport etc? Make sure the house you want is also in the location you want.
- Watch out for extra costs
The cost of buying a home is not just in the cost of the home. The stamp duty on the home can add thousands on top of the cost. Then there are real estate agent’s fees which add further thousands. Then removalist fees, settlement agent fees, land title search fees, money for new furniture, money for the connection of power and telephones, the list is almost endless. Make sure you have factored in all these costs or you could be in for a nasty shock.