Buying a home tips

Understanding the buying process

Buying a home?

Are you in the market to purchase a property but finding the process overwhelming? We’ve prepared some simple steps to help you understand the buying journey and make the process as smooth as possible.

Purchasing a home can be both exciting and daunting, so it’s important to understand the buying process before jumping into any kind of agreement. The more you understand prior to purchasing, the more likely you are to find and settle on the property of your dreams.

Looking for properties

The first thing you’re likely to do in the buying process is jump on and start browsing through the homes for sale.

It’s important to know exactly what you’re looking for so you’re able to filter your search accordingly. Do you want to be in a house, apartment or a townhouse? Do you need to be close to amenities, public transport or the beach?

Narrowing down to exactly the type of property you’re wanting will reduce a lot of time and stress for your buying journey.

Can you buy?

Once you’ve pinpointed the type of property you want and the location you need to be searching in, it’s time to consider your financial position. It’s important to be very transparent during this process.

It’s worth engaging the services of a lender or mortgage broker to help you make the best financial decisions. They will be able to inform you on how much you can afford to borrow in a process that’s known as pre-approval. Pre-approval is not a guarantee that your home loan application will be accepted, however it acts as a guide to show you that the application fits the lending criteria.

Pre-contract explained

Once you’ve received pre-approval and determined your budget you can now enter the pre-contract stage.

During this stage it’s recommended to engage a solicitor or financial advisor for assistance. They will provide you with professional advice during the buying process.

This phase is all about negotiation, such as discussing contract points like the price, deposit and settlement date. This is also the time to specify the conditions of the contract, this can include ensuring finance approval by a certain date or organising a building and pest inspection be carried out prior to settlement.

Pre-settlement explained

Before a property settles it’s essential you sign any bank loan documentation and it’s important to employ a solicitor to ensure that transfer documentation is in order.

During the pre-settlement phase you will conduct a pre-settlement inspection. Settlement periods can vary between 30 to 90 days, and in some cases it may be an even longer settlement. There is room for error during this time, so rather than expecting the property to be in the same condition as when you initially inspected it, it’s crucial to conduct a pre-settlement inspection. This is in most cases conducted during the week leading up to the settlement.

During your pre-settlement inspection, look for any indications of significant damage plus noting whether the home is clean and tidy both internally and externally.

Settlement day

This is the most exciting day in the buying process! On the agreed settlement day, your solicitor will transfer the money to the seller in exchange for the deeds to the property.

When the documents are transferred, the loan money is paid and the deposit is released. The agent will then provide you with the keys to the home and you have complete possession of your new home!

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