Are you a First Home Buyer? Here are my 5 Tips to buying property in 2020

Are you a First Home Buyer? Here are my 5 Tips to buying property in 2020
Are you a First Home Buyer? Here are my 5 Tips to buying property in 2020

Can you believe we are 20% into this new century? I can’t. Wow. Ok let’s go. I’ll keep this short and sharp with some dot points below and a little description next of each: 

Don’t overthink it. 

Yes you are going to be in debt for the majority of your life, but is it all really worth being on the market as a buyer for 2 years? Coming second place every weekend. Some of this will come down to the type of person you are and what you require to be ‘satisfied’. The average life span of most buyers is 2-3 months in my market (Inner Eastern Melbourne). Some simple questions to ask yourself while focusing on your values: 

What do I want out of this? How long is this purchase/investment going to serve me? What is the intent? Ie A roof over my head? Or a pure investment strategy

If it’s to be an investment, one theory that I subscribe to is: always buy where you would like to live. 

Back to basics. 

There are 100s of variables that can surmount to any major buying decision

Most markets in the southern hemisphere will pay more for a ‘northern aspect’ that shines natural light toward the rear of the home or the most used areas / entertaining areas. 

An entertaining area that is South facing is usually colder and may lack natural light. This orientation may not have as much buyer competition and therefore potentially a lower price. 

The same principal applies for the ‘high’ side and the ‘low’ side of the road. Even to the shape of the plot of land – ie irregular or regular. The latter may sound odd to some but believe me I’ve seen differences in the hundreds of thousands of dollars in selling similar homes on different sides of the road. 

Understand the numbers. 

Apartments – Calculate the dollar per square meter rate of the 3 most comparable sales using the internal m2. Apply that to the apartment you are interested in, taking into account the variables (i.e. orientation, fit out etc.) 

Older homes with land – What is the value of the replacement cos of the home? What is the dollar per m2 rate of the most comparable 3 sales? Add them together and voila – that is what we call market value. 

Outgoings – The first page most buyers look at on any vendor’s statement document. Understand the Owners Corporation notes, the rates and the water bills. Look for anything that stands out and ask questions. 

EVERY family has at least one expert. 

The question goes: Is this expert helping you financially to purchase this property? 

If not, then the question goes,: Are you wanting to satisfy Aunt Karen’s insistence for a Japanese maple garden featuring a koi fish pond in your entertaining area, or would you prefer to do it your own way? 

Being comfortable with your own values and knowing what you like, is what is important here. 

Prepare for disappointment. 

It’s your first home, give yourself a break. Did you like your first car? No. But it served a purpose. 

Be diligent but open to making a booboo. Managing the anxiety of not being able to control the future, is key & will be one less thing to worry about. 

If it doesn’t grow in capital value, the longer you leave it ‘as is’ the further behind you will be. 

Make the call and pull up stumps if you have to. It may be the best decision you will ever make.

Greg Bowring

Greg Bowring

Greg Bowring is a Licensed Estate Agent at Noel Jones Camberwell, and has practiced his trade throughout the inner eastern suburbs of Melbourne for many years. Greg is often sought for comment by major media outlets relating to real estate matters, and has appeared on Channel 9’s ‘The Block’.


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