Half an hour doesn’t seem like a great deal of time for an open for inspection but by the time you open a few cupboards, run the shower, walk through the garden and picture your furniture in the house it seems enough to at least establish if you like a property or not. Sometimes, of course, you can make a judgment call in 30 seconds; you may love it, or hate it!

Before you get too attached have a few questions in mind:

Is the location suitable?

Firstly you need to be happy with the suburb you are choosing to live in and consider the street, then focus on the house. You may want to do some research and make sure you are aware of any planned developments nearby. Increased traffic and noise from construction or loud neighbours can make a huge difference if peace and quiet is your goal.

Take a drive around the local area and see if the facilities you require are available. Schools, shops, public transport and medical facilities are often a high priority for a more convenient lifestyle.

Don’t just introduce yourself to the estate agent; have a good chat. Many agents are experts at their territories so they will know which streets are in high demand and what’s on the market. They may be able to direct you to your dream home. Note that not all property for sale has a ‘For Sale’ sign on it! Many agents offer first inspections to clients on their client list, so make sure you’re in touch with up to date information.

Will your furniture…and family fit in the house?

Floorplans can make or break a house purchase; every family has different needs, so make sure the house configuration is what you need. Does it have enough bedrooms? Is the lounge room too close to the bedroom? Are there enough bathrooms? Will your boat fit in the garage? Is there internet access?

What does the future hold? …Are you having children? Are the in-laws moving in?

Make sure the house fits your needs; renovations can be time consuming and costly. If you choose to purchase a house in need of renovations do some homework and get some professionals to give you an estimate as to the cost.

Do you want to make an emotional purchase? (rhetorical question!)

Don’t lose sight of the practical considerations. From power points to hot water systems, insulation to cracks on the wall; it’s often a wise idea to get a reputable building inspector and a separate pest inspector to report any concerns so you’re not surprised by any nasties. Plumbing issues, damp problems and structural complications could cost dearly; you want to know about these issues so you can negotiate on price and consider if the property is a worthwhile investment.

The most important question of al…What can I afford to spend on a property?

That’s where we come in! It’s great to have a dream and our team are committed to supporting you in attaining your goals. Along with real estate agents, solicitors, conveyancers and accountants (not to mention government departments) the complexities of forms and contracts are often overwhelming and your mortgage broker can guide you through the process with clarity and the peace of mind of a pre-approval.

Open for inspections are just the beginning of your house hunting, so don’t forget to ask questions and be well informed before you make a decision on a property. Real estate agents are there to assist you if you want to go through a house a few times and at different times of the day and week. This will give you a better feel for the property and surrounding area. Meanwhile our mortgage brokers are open for questions on (03) 5976 8426.