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Buying a house? Here are 4 things to consider

5 minute read
A couple outside a home

As far as momentous life decisions go, they don’t get much bigger than buying a house. Whether it’s your first or fifth property, it can be incredibly stressful and time-consuming to get the right home at the right price.

If you’re thinking about purchasing a property in 2019, you’ve probably got pre-approval lined up, determined your budget, been to a few open houses, created a list of must-have features and shortlisted a property or two.

But, there are a few other things you might not have contemplated yet. To help, we’ve outlined four things you should consider in the lead up to signing the dotted line.

1. The price of the home is just the beginning

Stamp duty, conveyancing fees, valuation costs, loan application fees, Lenders Mortgage Insurance… when it comes to the costs associated with buying a house, a deposit is just the beginning.

If you’re planning on living in your property, prepare for the unexpected and don’t forget to factor in moving day costs as well as any appliances or furniture you might need for your new abode. If you’re going to rent the property out, don’t underestimate how costly it can be to maintain a property and keep it tenant-friendly.

By factoring in and setting aside additional budget, you’ll be better placed to cover the extra costs that tend to pop up when you least expect them.

2. Use your head, not your heart

Paying too much for a property is one of the biggest mistakes home buyers make, which is why it’s important to try to separate your emotions from the purchase. This might seem like a straightforward tip, but it’s easy to forget when you stumble upon a property that’s straight out of your Pinterest dreams.

While an infinity pool, marble benchtop and giant walk-in wardrobe might razzle-dazzle you, there’s no amount of fancy fixtures and fittings that can outshine a structurally-bad property or a neighbourhood that’s not the right fit.

Take a clear-headed friend or family member along with you to the open houses to help keep your emotions in check.

A couple looking at property outside a real estate agency

3. Is your neighbourhood the right fit?

If you’ve found the perfect property, but have only ever been to see it two times at 3pm on a Wednesday, you might be in for a shock come settlement day.

Before making a huge purchase decision, consider the following:

  • What is your street and neighbourhood like at different times of day and on different days of the week? Is it busy on Saturdays due to kids’ sport at the local park? Is it gridlock in the surrounding streets at 8am on a Monday morning?
  • Don’t always trust Google Maps when it comes to calculating your commute. Drive to your most-frequented destinations at times you’d be likely to travel to get a good feel for traffic.
  • Grab a coffee at a café down the road, a few groceries from the local shops and a bite to eat at a nearby restaurant to find out if the atmosphere is what you thought it would be. It’s also a great opportunity to have a chat with people who work or live in the area about what they like and dislike about your potential new hood.

4. Ensure your home isn’t the only thing you protect

Whether it’s a home or an investment, chances are your new property is going to be one of the biggest purchases you ever make and a long-term financial commitment. It’s common to protect your property in the form of home insurance, but have you ever thought about protecting the person who pays off that house?

As awful as it is to think about, who would make your repayments if you were to fall seriously ill or pass away? If you have a partner, could you rely on one income for your mortgage? With nib Life Insurance and Income Protection*, you can have peace of mind and protect yourself and your loved ones from the uncertainties of the future. Get a free quote today to see how affordable getting covered can be.

*This information is for Australian residents only and may be subject to change.

Any advice is general in nature only and does not take into account your financial situation, personal objectives or needs, so before acting on it, you should consider its appropriateness for you, having regard to those factors. Before making any decision to acquire or to continue to hold nib Life Insurance or Income Protection, you should read the Combined Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Financial Services Guide (FSG) .

TAL Life Limited ABN 70 050 109 450 AFSL 237848 is the issuer of the life insurance benefits, and St Andrew's Insurance (Australia) Pty Ltd ABN 89 075 044 656 AFSL 239649 is the issuer of the Involuntary Unemployment Cover available as part of nib Income Protection. nib health care services pty ltd (nib) ABN 91 003 037 625 is an authorised representative (AR Number 321683) of TAL Direct Pty Limited ABN 39 084 666 017 AFSL 243260, which promotes these products. nib does not guarantee or accept any liability under nib life insurance products or income protection products.

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