Finding a home
Apart from finding the type of home that suits your needs, it is important to first consider the area in which you want to live. When you are looking, remember that some areas may be in decline (no longer as popular), while others could be experiencing a boost in popularity. This is important to know, especially if you are buying.
Some things to consider when looking for the area or neighbourhood in which you would like to live include:
- Is the suburb well serviced by public transport?
- Are there quality parks?
- Are there quality sporting facilities?
- Is there a shopping centre?
- Is there a police station?
- Is there a hospital?
- Are there other medical/dental services?
- Is the area flood prone? Bushfire prone?
- Is the area free from aircraft noise?
- Is the suburb safe?
- Is the area convenient to your place of work?
- Are there quality schools and childcare?
Once you have decided on an area, you can either contact real estate agents directly or as most people do in the first instance, go online and see what is available, three popular sites that allow you to search by postcode are;
Inspecting a Home
Most homes on the market are open for inspection at particular times, usually on a Saturday, and others are open only by appointment. By searching the internet and making phone calls to the agents you can limit the number of homes you actually visit.
In Australia if you are interested in a property you can arrange to have some professional inspections done, these can include:
- a building inspection - to ensure the property is structurally sound
- a pest inspection – to ensure the property does not have issues with pests such as termites.
These inspections could save you thousands of dollars and years of headaches by helping you avoid a problem property. You should make sure the people you use are licensed, its also a good idea when shopping around for people to carry out inspections to ask for a sample copy of a previous inspection report and check the agreement to see what guarantees are offered if the building or pest inspector misses a major problem.
Inspecting on a private treaty
If you are buying a property through what’s known as “private treaty” (not involving agents or an auction) you can make an offer based on successful inspections. If your offer is accepted, you can exchange a contract that allows you to pull out of the deal (cancel it) if you are not satisfied with the inspections.
This way you avoid the expense of paying for inspections before having your offer accepted.