Buying a new home can be both exciting and nerve wracking. When you are purchasing a home in a new country it can come with some added challenges. Before you start your search for your new home there are a number of things you may want to consider:
- Decide what style of housing you are looking for and where you want to live. You can check out our Where to Live section to get you started.
Research the market – there are a number of tools available which allows you to check recent sales in the area, and research expected future economic trends. To search for properties check out www.ourproperty.com.au, or Mandarin speakers may prefer to use www.gifang.com. You may also want to look at www.realestate.com.au and www.domain.com.au . Websites such as www.myrp.com.au offer suburb profiles and recent sales reports. Local estate agents will also have access to this information so you can price compare.
- Know the costs involved in buying property and also potential ongoing costs of owning property.
- Do you require finance to complete your purchase?
- Are you eligible to purchase property in Australia?
What is the process involved in buying property in Australia?
Make Sure you are you eligible to purchase property in Australia? As a non-permanent resident there may be restrictions around your ability to purchase property. The Foreign Investment Review Board of Australia processes all applications for non-permanent residents
For further information please refer to: http://www.firb.gov.au
Prepare a budget and understand your financial position. If you require finance to assist with your purchase there are a number of financing options available. The home loan market in Australia is very competitive providing you a variety of many different lenders with even more product options. Although this competition is ultimately good for the consumer, finding the best deal can often be complex and time consuming. This can be further complicated by the fact that each lenders credit policy varies greatly when lending to non-permanent residents. An accredited Mortgage Broker will have access to a number of lender and product options and can save you time and money as they have the expertise to find you the correct loan from hundreds of options. They will be able to present you a number of different options outlining all the costs and terms associated
Engage a solicitor/conveyancer - Once you have made the decision to purchase your new home it is highly recommended that you engage a solicitor/conveyancer who will be able to guide you through all the legal aspects of your purchase. Use FindLaw directory to begin your search.
A few handy hints:
1. Deposit – most lenders will require you to have a minimum deposit of 20% of the purchase price. Some lenders do provide products that allow for a smaller deposit however this will depend on your individual circumstances.
2. Pre-approval – finance pre-approval allows you to bid at auction and submit offers with confidence knowing that your finance has been conditionally approved. Pre-approval are generally valid for 3 months while you search for your new home. Would you like to apply for a pre-approval?
3. Required documentation – This will vary from lender to lender however generally speaking you will be required to provide ID, evidence of income, and details around your current financial position.
Know the costs involved in purchasing a home in Australia
- There are a number of costs involved when purchasing property, as well as before and after you buy. These are some costs which you can expect to pay:
- Stamp Duty of Transfer – this will vary depending on which state you. Use the Office of State Revenue calculator
- Building and Pest Reports – it is highly recommended that building a pest reports be obtained
- Legal and conveyancing costs
- Financing costs – this will vary from lender to lender
- Home and contents insurance
- Moving costs and utilities
- Ongoing council rates
- Ongoing body corporate/strata fees – these are generally payable when purchasing apartments and units
First Home Buyers Grant: If you are a permanent resident you may be entitled to a first home owner’s grant. The grant is different in each state but in ACT is $7000 but has conditions.
Making an offer – there are two main methods of purchasing property in Australia
1. Auction – properties are usually sold by auction when demand is high. If you are the successful bidder you will be required to immediately pay a 10% deposit and the contract will be unconditional as such before going to auction it would be advisable to ensure you are in a position to settle on the purchase.
2. Private Treaty – is when a property is offered for sale at a negotiated price. The normal practice is for the vendor (the current owner of the property) to set the price and you negotiate with them until a mutually agreeable price is reached. The terms of the contract can vary however it is generally accepted that a 10% deposit is required on exchange of the contract.
Contract of sale – the contract of sale is generally prepared by the agent or the vendor’s solicitor. Ensure that you have your solicitor/convenyancer review the Contract of Sale before you sign anything.
Settlement Process – once unconditional on the purchase your solicitor/conveyancer will handle most pre-settlement conditions and will liase with all relevant stakeholders.