There are many milestones in our lives that are significant – our first day of school and our last, our first day of university and getting our first real job. Then there’s meeting our future partners, getting married and having kids. Part of the growth and development that lots of us crave and work towards is the huge milestone of buying our first home. After all, it makes things a lot less stressful when you’re raising a small family if you own your own home. It’s the dream of many young people to own their own home, and these very eager first home buyers may spend plenty of time at the Homebuyers Centre looking at houses and daydreaming about their future.
In today’s economic climate, however, it is often the case that many people are finding it harder and harder to achieve the dream of home ownership. With rising house prices and a narrowing market, it’s difficult to firstly save the money that you need to put down your deposit, and then it’s hard to find the right house for you, given the huge amount of competition in the marketplace. While there’s not much that you can do about the competition, (except read the real estate pages every day and attend auctions voraciously in an attempt to outsmart your competition) you can do something about the deposit and about breaking into the housing market in general. In light of this, I’ve composed a short list of things that you can do in order to get your foot onto the property ladder.
Step One: Leverage your parents as much as possible (or share-house if you can’t)
If you are in the fortuitous position of being able to live with your parents while you save for a deposit, then you should take full advantage of this while you can. You’ll find that you can save a lot faster when the heavy burden of rent is removed from your shoulders. If you don’t have a family unit that is able to accommodate you, then consider moving into a share-house to save some money as a means to an end. The most important thing you need to do when you’re saving for a house is to leverage every single money saving opportunity that you can – and as we have previously stated, rent is a huge component of our monthly spend, and so it makes sense to reduce it if we can.
Step Two: Engage the services of a buyer’s advocate
If you’re time poor, (and let’s face it – who isn’t these days?) you need to leverage the services of a person who knows property inside and out, and who is going to act on your behalf when it comes to sealing the deal. A buyer’s advocate will – for a small fee – arrange the houses for you to look at and will negotiate for you. Choose a good one and you’re basically set.
Step Three: Develop a savings plan for your deposit
Saving for the deposit is often one of the most staggeringly difficult things for anyone to do – given the fact that you’re saving at least upwards of thirty thousand dollars in many cases. The optimum thing to do in order to optimise your chances for success is to have a strict saving plan with milestones for your achievements. That way you’ll be more likely to achieve your goals.
Step Four: Leverage your parent’s home as a security deposit
In many cases now, banks will allow children to use their parent’s homes as a security or deposit for their own home, which means that you can buy sooner (and often better homes) than you otherwise might have been able to do. Speak to your parents about this if this is an option for you, as it might be something that could get you buying before you know it!
Well, good luck in your property endeavours – and I hope that this list is a helpful tool for you when you’re looking to get started in property.