How to prepare to buy when you’re not on a deadline
25th February, 2021
Some of us work best with a deadline, but it can be hard to know the right time to buy or even when the right property will come along.
Whether you’re looking and can’t seem to find the right place or you keep getting out-bid, there are a number of reasons our desire to buy a home can go unfulfilled within a certain timeframe.
We asked REA’s very own Executive Manager of Economic Research, Cameron Kusher, for some property search and preparation wisdom to set you up for success.
If your timeline gets blown out due to circumstances beyond your control, here are the areas you can focus on…
Know your budget
The very first step is going to a bank and getting a good idea of what you can borrow and what kind of budget you’re working within.
“Get an idea of how much you can spend (on a property) before you start your search,” says Kusher.
“Having a budget to work within is key for a number of reasons, but it can also help set your expectations for your search. For example, a smaller budget might mean you will spend a bit more time looking (for a property) or it could mean you need to reset your expectations of where you want to live. You might find if you move a bit further out, you can get a much bigger house.”
Get conditional pre-approval
If your property search has been slow going, getting conditionally pre-approved for a mortgage will help you jump on the right property when it comes along.
Conditional pre-approval means you’re eligible to apply for a home loan up to a certain amount, and have less work to do to secure your loan once you find the home you want.
“If a property is going to auction you can move much more quickly if you have conditional pre-approval,” Kusher adds.
Know the market
You don’t have to be an expert, but try to get an idea of how many homes are on the market in your desired area, what they’re selling for and if there are a lot of other buyers in the mix. Getting to know your local real estate agents can help you!
Read the news, set up alerts on your favourite property search site, and keep an eye on local auction results. It will help prepare you for your time to shine.
Talk to Real Estate Agents
On the topic of research, don’t forget to utilise your local real estate agent. Many buyers view real estate agents as ‘the enemy,’ but that doesn’t have to be the case.
“Go talk to real estate agents as they might have a good idea of things coming on the market soon that haven’t been advertised yet,” Kusher encourages.
“If they know what you’re after and that you’re ready and able to buy, they might get you in on something early.”