It’s that time of year again where we tick over into a new financial year, review our goals and consider our finances ready for the year ahead.
Whether you are a first-home buyer, or a seasoned property owner looking to upsize or downsize, preparing your finances to buy isn’t a small feat. Here, we share our top tips to help you get your financial house in order before the perfect home comes along.
Take advantage of relevant schemes and grants
This year, several schemes and grants have been introduced by the Federal Government in a bid to help boost the property market and assist those looking to buy.
For first home buyers
As well as the First Home Owners Grant and First Home Super Saver Scheme, the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme has been introduced, which allows for eligible first home buyers to purchase a home with a deposit of only five per cent – without needing to pay for lenders mortgage insurance. There is also the HomeBuilders Scheme, offering applicants including first home buyers a $25,000 tax-free grant towards either a new build or a renovation until 31 December 2020.
Those looking to downsize can also reap the benefits of Government schemes with the Downsizer Contribution Schemeallowing eligible applicants to contribute up to $300,000 of their property sales to their superannuation, which could mean thousands of dollars in tax savings.
“With so many schemes and grants readily available, now is the perfect time for those looking to enter the property market to get ahead of the game and save big. Make sure you look into which grants might suit you and get advice from your mortgage broker or accountant before diving in,” says Belle Property’s Head of Growth, Nick Boyd.
Consider low interest rates and getting financial advice
Australia’s interest rates are currently at an all-time low and are likely to stay at 0.25 per cent for a while.
“There are many important factors to consider when saving to buy and looking for a home loan, and the interest rate is one of them; especially when it comes to variable home loans,” says Nick.
“There are financial and tax benefits to several different loan arrangements. The best thing to do is speak to your lender or financial advisor for the right guidance.”
Budget for hidden costs
As with any major purchase, there are hidden costs in buying a home that extend past the purchasing price. It’s a good idea to research what these are so you know what you need to consider before you buy.
For first home buyers
For many first home buyers, learning about property finances happens on the run, but with that said, you want to try and wrap your head around these costs during your planning stages.
“My biggest advice to first home buyers is to understand and be prepared for the costs outside of the property price before they start looking. These costs can include stamp duty, lenders mortgage insurance, loan application fees; the list goes on. So, check in with your lender or financial advisor to be sure,” says Nick.
Although you may be moving to a smaller house, it doesn’t necessarily mean your associated costs will be any less expensive.
“When downsizing make sure you consider stamp duty, legal fees, moving and inspection costs too,” Nick explains.
For more advice about getting ready to buy, read our blog on the benefits of buying or selling in winter.