Key Things to Consider When Looking for a First Home

Once you have your pre-approval organised, you can house hunt with a bit more confidence and clarity. But it is wise to do some research before taking the plunge and putting your hand up at an auction. Below are some key things to consider when weighing up a property purchase:

Location: where you buy is considered by some to be just as important as what you buy. Perhaps even more so. Consider things like the property’s proximity to your loved ones and your workplace, as well as to parks, shops, freeways, and public transport. It is also worth looking into the safety of the suburb, the demographic of its residents and the area’s median property price.

Schools: if you have school-aged children, school zones are another factor to consider. Where you live can sometimes dictate which schools your children can attend.

Resale value: considering a property’s potential resale value is also important if you intend to upsize or move on in the future. Aside from location, there are various factors that can impact the resale value of a property. Some of these include the size and number of bedrooms, the property’s layout and whether or not if offers the potential for renovation, the age of the property, and the upkeep involved.

Non-negotiables: work out exactly what you can and cannot compromise on when it comes to the features of your new home. It is unlikely that you are going to find a property within your price range that is perfect in every way, so it is wise to think about what your ‘must have’ features are, as opposed to features that you would like to have but can live without. This will help you to refine your property search, as you can automatically rule out properties that don’t meet your ‘must have’ criteria. If you are purchasing with someone else, be sure to discuss this thoroughly and make one consolidated list so that both parties are on the same page. Your list will of course depend on individual circumstances (e.g. if you have kids, if you are a working professional, your age etc.)

See our example list below, which is based on the lifestyle and requirements of a working professional with children, but no driver’s license:

MUST HAVES WOULD BE NICE BUT NOT ESSENTIAL
Outdoor area for children / pets Open plan living
Ample storage / wardrobe space Dishwasher
Garage Single level
Study / Working From Home space Ensuite
Walking distance to public transport Freestanding property
Walking distance to parks Island bench in kitchen
Bath 6-star energy rating or higher
Separate laundry Undercover alfresco area
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