Looking for your first home can be an overwhelming experience. Afterall, it’s most likely the most amount of money you’ve ever spent in one transaction. And you definitely don’t want to make the wrong decision. So, how do you know you’re purchasing your first home in the right suburb?
Keep an open mind
One of the most important things to remember when looking for where to buy your first home is to keep an open mind. Your first home isn’t always going to be your forever home, and that’s fine. When researching your home, think about the suburbs you’d like to buy in and where you can afford to purchase a home. They might not always match up at first, so you’ll have to make some compromises.
Suburb and property reports
When researching to find a suburb you can both afford and enjoy living in, suburb and property reports can help. You can find these reports on property listing sites such as Domain and Realestate.com.au as well as through real estate agents. Suburb reports provide information on the property prices in the area, as well as price changes overtime which can help you decide whether the suburb fits into your budget or not. Consider signing up to agent email newsletters in the suburbs you’re interested in purchasing in. When attending open homes, speak to the agent about property reports for similar style homes as well.
Affordability of suburbs
Most of Australia’s capital cities have fast growing outer suburbs which provide much cheaper land values. It can often be cheaper in these newly developed outer suburbs to purchase home and land packages and build a brand new home. In some states or territories, the First Home Owner Grant is only available if you build a new home so you might be able to save money in these suburbs too. It’s important though to consider that these newly developed suburbs can be located a far way out from the city centre and may be further away from the lifestyle you want access to.
Consider the lifestyle
Budgets aside, where you buy should also suit your lifestyle. While you’ll need to have an open mind and be flexible about your choice of suburbs to suit your budget, lifestyle is an important factor to consider. If your lifestyle revolves around your friends and family, being close to them might be a priority. Whereas if you like spending time outdoors at the beach, you might need to look further away from the city centre to be closer to the coast.
Don’t forget to also consider what your future needs will be. If you’re planning on starting a family, consider the family friendly lifestyle of a suburb and research the quality of local schools and day care centres as they’re things you’ll need access to. Similarly, if you’re looking to invest in the future, consider the suburb’s future prospects for value growth. Any rise in your first home’s potential selling price can help you build your property portfolio.
Work locally or commute?
One of the most defining factors of choosing where to purchase your first home is likely going to be the home’s proximity to your place of work. While you might not necessarily be in the same workplace forever, you’ll likely need to commute for a little while after moving in. It might be more affordable to move away from work at first, but a long daily commute can cost a considerable amount of money in the long term and affect your lifestyle. Consider looking for a suburb closer to new work opportunities so you can eventually work closer to home.
Buying your first home is one of the most exciting steps you’ll take in your life but it can be overwhelming to say the least. Make sure you take the time to research and choose a suburb you’ll be happy living in.