Buying a home can be a lengthy and sometimes overwhelming process, and it can be hard to know whether you’re ready.
From the moment you start looking at house and land packages in south-east Melbourne, or viewing display homes in Cranbourne to attending your first auction, can take months. And as one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll make, you want to be sure you’re in the right position to be a home owner.
Here are some signs that now might be the right time for you to buy a home.
Buying a house comes with a range of costs, such as a mortgage, utilities and taxes. When you want to buy a home you need to ensure your finances are stable enough that you will be able to afford mortgage repayments and have enough money to cover any unexpected repairs or maintenance.
When you have a mortgage you have to make repayments every fortnight or month without fail.
This means you can’t spend all your money on an overseas trip or quit your job without having another one of equal or better pay lined up.
Make sure you have enough for a down payment, plus extra for closing costs and other mandatory expenses that come with buying a home, such as taxes, homeowners insurance and more. There is no way to avoid paying these fees, so make sure you can afford them. You don’t want to buy a new home and then have nothing left in your savings. It’s always best to have an emergency fund put aside in case of home emergencies.
Consider if you have credit card debt or other loans you need to pay off that may impact your ability to afford your mortgage payments.
When inspecting homes, look at anything that may require maintenance or repairs, both immediately and down the road. If you’re buying a home that needs some work, make sure you have money set aside for that.
House and land packages can sometimes be a more affordable option for homebuyers, so it may be worth looking into house and land packages in Berwick Waters, as they may better suit your financial situation.
Look at your finances, and work out what your monthly expenses are. This will help you work out a budget and determine how much you can afford on repayments. If you have a steady, reliable income and can cover all these costs, then it could be the right time to buy.
Saving for the deposit can often be the hardest part and it is generally recommended that you save at least 20 percent of the value of the property.
If the deposit is putting a strain on your finances, you may want to wait and spend more time saving up. You don’t want to struggle to afford the deposit and then have nothing left over, as this can add stress to paying your mortgage and other homeowner costs.
While it’s recommended you aim for a 20 per cent deposit, there are some incentives and schemes available to help you make the difference if you have less. If you have at least five per cent of the average home price you’re looking to buy, this may be a good sign you’re ready to buy. Research the various options available if you have less than 20 per cent, but keep in mind the bigger your deposit, the more you’ll save in the long term.
A larger down payment can also mean better mortgage terms and make it easier to pay off early.
The better your credit score, the better positioned you will be to get a better deal on your mortgage loan and get approval. This is because lenders will view your good credit as a sign you will be able to afford repayments.
Your credit score helps determine the interest rate and other costs you pay on your mortgage loan. The higher your credit score, the more you could potentially save on interest.
If you’re planning to buy a house and don’t have great credit, work on trying to improve it. Paying down debt doesn’t just improve your credit score, it can also help free up cash to be put towards mortgage payments and home maintenance.
Even if you haven’t paid off everything, you may still be in a good position to buy a home. Just remember the lower your debt loan, the better the loan terms you’ll be able to get and more options for buying a home.
As well as having your finances in order, a key sign you may be ready to buy is if your lifestyle supports it.
This can include a range of things for different people, from job stability to a desire to have more space or grow your family.
If you have security in your job and relationship and feel settled in your life, this may be a good time to buy. If you’re in a position where you know you can grow and progress in your career, this can make you well-positioned to afford a mortgage and the additional costs that come with owning a home. However, if you’re worried about your job or work in an unstable industry, it may not be a good idea to buy.
Buying a house during a disruptive time can just add to the stress, but if you’re planning to stay in one area for at least the next five or more years or you’ve fallen in love with an area you know you want to live in, buying a home may be a good investment.
If you want more privacy and control over your living space, owning your own home can provide a greater level of independence. If you’re planning to expand your family, you work from home or you just want a backyard, house and land packages in south-east Melbourne can offer more space and allow you to enjoy the lifestyle you want.
Keep in mind that owning your own home may require some sacrifices and reduced flexibility. Once you own a home you cannot so easily pick up and move around if your career or family situation changes. It’s harder to sell a house than break a lease, so make sure you’re planning to live in your new home for at least a few years. Due to using up a big chunk of your finances, you also may have to put off other experiences, such as holidays or a new car, for a while.
If you’ve viewed display homes in Clyde North or found a house and land package in south-east Melbourne that perfectly suits your needs, the housing market is looking buyer-friendly and you have your finances in order, now may be the right time for you to buy your dream home.