So, you've got some money saved and you're ready to start thinking about buying a home? What's the process look like?

Engage Professionals

Before you start looking it is advisable to discuss your situation with a mortgage broker to determine your lending options and borrowing capacity. This will help you choose suitable properties based on your current position or help you understand where you need to get to in order to purchase a property that meets your requirements.

At this point, it is also a good time to choose your solicitor and advise them of your plans to purchase a property, by doing so they will be ready to review contracts on suitable properties.

Property Criteria

Once you know how much you can borrow it will allow you to consider what properties are available and in which area. This part of the process involves some research, we are looking to see what suburbs have properties that match our needs i.e., backyard, ducted air-conditioning, 2 bathrooms etc and our price point. It is essential to stick to your budget, your pre-approval is a hard number and anything above that will need to be re-assessed. This is especially important when interest rates are rising as this usually means a reduction in borrowing capacity, your mortgage broker can help with this during your search.

Found a Property

Congratulations! It’s now time to negotiate with the agent and determine the sale price. It’s crucial to research similar properties that have sold recently or are on the market to determine your offer. Once your offer has been accepted it’s time to get your solicitor or conveyancer to review the contract on your behalf, at this point the real estate agent will often ask you to pay a holding deposit to show your commitment this is generally refundable if you do not proceed before the cooling off period ends. The cooling-off period is generally 5-10 business days in New South Wales.

While you are working with your solicitor to ensure the contract is suitable, your mortgage broker should be preparing to move your pre-approval to a full application and you should be ordering a building and pest report if not provided with the contract of sale.

Once you (with the help of your solicitor) have agreed to terms with the seller you will exchange contracts at the end of the cooling-off period and pay the agreed deposit, usually 5 or 10%.

Getting Ready to Settle

Once your contract has exchanged you will have 4-5 weeks before your settlement date, during this time it is important to keep working with your mortgage broker and solicitor to arrange any information or documents they require. It is also a good time to start organising insurance on the property, furniture, removalists and trades if the property requires any work before moving in. You’ll be required to do a final inspection prior to settlement to ensure you are buying the property in the same condition as when you made your offer.

On settlement day your solicitor will act on your behalf and attend settlement directing funds to the seller, bank and other relevant parties (state government for stamp duty, utilities for partial payments made and local government for partially paid rates). You’ll receive notification from your solicitor once settlement has occurred, you are now ready to pick up the keys and enjoy your home!

If you are considering purchasing your first home, upgrading your existing home or purchasing an investment property, please get in touch or book a free assessment today. We would love to discuss your options and guide you through the process.