Buying a home will probably be the most expensive thing you ever do. So it’s important to understand the buying process and to be well informed about the property market.
With so much to think about and so much money at stake, every decision is an important one.
Below is a list of topics that you should explore before deciding on a property.
1) Getting Finance - Before you go looking for a property it's best to sort out your finances first. If you need to apply for a loan, sit down and work out what you can afford each week in loan repayments. The next step is going to the bank and applying for a loan. Our advice is to shop around for a loan provider and try out different banks. Loan providers offer different interest rates and different features and services with their loans. Doing your homework would save you thousands of dollars in the long term.
Once you have sorted who your home loan provider will be, you may want to consider applying for ‘pre-approval’. Pre-approval is useful for showing vendors that you are serious about making an offer, and streamlines the process of finalising your finance before making an offer.
2) Property Inspections - Once your finances are in order, you may now start looking for that perfect property. Property inspections generally occur on Saturdays and last for approximately 30 mins. It's at this stage where you will either love the home, or decide to keep on looking. If you do love the home you may consider putting in an offer.
3) Making An Offer - Buying a property is often the biggest financial decision that a person will make, and making an offer is a significant step in that process. The amount in which you off is entirely up to you. Offers can be made both verbally or in in writing. Once the offer has been made the Real Estate Agent will submit the offer to the owner. The owner now has the decision to accept or decline. If not accepted you have two options: you may be asked if you would like to increase your offer and see if the owner will accept OR you may wish to keep on looking. If accepted you will be asked to sign contracts on the property and leave a holding deposit, this is known as "Exchanging Contracts".
4) Exchanging Contracts - Exchanging contracts legally completes the process of buying a home. The contract includes the terms and conditions of the sale and valuable information about the land. You will need to have appointed a solicitor or conveyancer at this point in time, as they will be sent the signed and exchanged contracts of sale where they will be able to review the negotiated conditions. Once contracts have been signed you will be required to leave a holding deposit being 0.25% of the purchase price of the property. now enter into whats known as a "Cooling Off Period".
5) Cooling Off Period - The cooling-off period starts as soon as you exchange and ends at 5pm on the fifth business day(no weekends) after exchange. In this time you are free to conduct a Building & Pest Inspection or a Bank Valuation. If for any reason you wish to terminate the contracts and not proceed with the sale, you will lose the initial 0.25% holding deposit that you placed to secure the property and this amount will goes to the owner. At the end of the 5 day cooling off period if you are satisfied with the property and would like to proceed with the sale, you will need to provide the remaining 10% deposit. This is usually paid by way of Bank Cheque or Direct Deposit.
6) Settlement - Settlement usually takes place about 6 weeks after contracts are exchanged. On the morning of settlement day, you should conduct a final inspection of the property to ensure it is in the same condition as when contracts were exchanged. Your Real Estate Agent will be more than happy to organise this with you. At settlement, each party being both your solicitor/conveyancer and the owners solicitor/conveyancer will exchange the necessary cheques and documents for title in the property to be transferred to your name. Once settlement is completed you are able to pick up your keys from the Real Estate Agency and move into your new home.