Housing prices are booming at the moment, which is great news for those who got in the market before the boom, but terrible for those looking to buy right now.
Capital city prices rose 2.3 per cent last month, according to new figures released by RP Data and Rismarck. The total growth in capital cities in the first quarter of the year is now at 3.5 per cent.
While it may look like a dreadful time to enter the market if you’re looking for a bargain, you can’t always afford to wait until the prices drop.
“Look, it’s great to pick a time to buy in the down turn of the market, but sometimes there will be factors that won’t allow you to do that,” said Sophorn En, managing director of property investment advisory company Riveren Property.
“There are still opportunities if you go to the right people to find you that right property,” Mr En said. “It’s not about the timing of when you get into the marketplace, it’s about how long you hold that property for.”
If you desperately need a house right now, are looking to relocate or want to jump into the market in the hope that prices will keep going up, we’ve got you covered.
Here are The New Daily‘s tips to save money when you’re looking to buy a house.
Do your research
Save for a bigger deposit
A deposit upwards of 20 per cent of your home’s value can help you avoid costly Lenders Mortgage Insurance and help you negotiate a better interest rate with your lender, according to national spokesperson for Mortgage Choice Jessica Darnbrough.
Shop around for better interest rates
“It definitely pays to shop around because rates are at 53 year lows at the moment and lenders are aggressive and they’ve made no bones about it – they want the business of borrowers, so they are going to offer significant rate cuts and rate savings,” Ms Darnbrough said.
For wealthy buyers, look at different loan types
“There’s a huge array of loan types in the market [available to high net worth individuals, such as] an offset account, a line of credit – something that might optimise the money they have if they are a high net worth individual because that might be able to help them pay off that mortgage sooner,” Ms Darnbrough said.
Choose a less popular suburb
Shifting the focus of your house hunt could help you find a place quicker, thus saving you from the ever rising prices.
“Sometimes the right suburb is only a suburb away. If you’re flexible about it, you’re more likely to find a property you’re looking for quicker than being in the market for a longer period of time,” said Mr James at hockingstuart.
Hire the experts
Experts can help you wade through the legal red tape, choose good value-for-money suburbs and properties, and can even negotiate the purchase price on your behalf.
These include buyer’s advocates, property advisors, financial planners, and lawyers, who can often earn back their fee in savings of time, money and legal headaches.
Have an independent valuation undertaken
Josh Masters, a buyer’s agent and author of Why Property Why Now, said that getting an independent valuation is a key way to make sure you aren’t overpaying.
“A professional valuation will give you a guide as to what the property is really worth and will save you from paying far over true value.”
Use online websites
“There’s vast amounts of websites and information that you can research online,” said Andrew James at Hockingstuart.
Be analytical, not emotional
“I know first homebuyers get emotional, but… they’ve got to look at it from a purely financial perspective,” said Sophorn En at Riveren Property.
Mistakes can also be made when “people see something, and they seem to get so absorbed in it, so emotional about it, so invested in it,” he said.
You should concentrate on the monthly repayments, capital growth, and how quickly it will take to pay down the interest on your loan.
Think and act like a millionaire
“The high net worth individuals are more frugal with their money, and they go about things in a very stringent and tactical way because they want to put their money into something that is going to give them a better return on their investment.
“For first home buyers and people moving up to their next home, they need to employ those tactics,” Mr En said.
Get a housemate
Once you’ve bought your home or apartment, renting out a spare room could help you manage the bills and repay your home loan.
If you can’t find a friend to move in, you could even advertise on Airbnb.
Buy off the plan
Buying a house or apartment that’s under construction but not yet finished can save on stamp duty, especially if it’s in “an area predicted to have some capital growth”, said Sophorn En.
“When you’re buying something already established, the stamp duty is huge,” he said.
If you buy at auction, be a savvy bidder
“Be very, very aggressive in the bidding, show no hesitation, and bid right up to your limit as quickly as you can,” said Andrew James of Hockingstuart. “It’s all a bit about bravado.”
Get a family member to guarantee your loan
If you are a first home buyer and unable to afford a large deposit, a debt guarantee from a family member could help you avoid fees and negotiate a better interest rate.
“We’re seeing a lot more parents go guarantor to help their children get a foot onto the property ladder sooner, so that’s something they could raise with their parents or it could be an aunt or an uncle or something like that,” said Jessica Darnbrough at Mortgage Choice.