Where Should I Buy A House?

By Peter Sarmas on 16 Oct 2013
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Where Should I Buy a House

It can be hard to know where to buy a house.
Photo: A Loves DC

From first home buyers to experienced property investors, one of the biggest causes of confusion when purchasing property is trying to decide where to buy a house.

While some people base their decision on where to buy a house around an emotional attachment to a particular suburb, others buy based on predications of a high investment return.

Whether you fall into either of these two categories or have no idea where to start, read on for some important points to consider that will help you decide where to buy a house.

Budget

Before you start searching for your next home, it is a good idea to determine what you have to spend.

If you are borrowing from a bank or lender, seek pre-approval for your home loan before you begin your search.

Remember that pre-approval is not necessarily the full amount you will receive from the bank when the time comes to seek formal approval for your loan, so try to be strict with your budget and allow some leeway should the amount the bank officially agrees to lend you be less than anticipated.

Use the pre-approval figure as a guideline to help you determine the sort of house in which particular suburb you can afford to buy.

Location

Investigate your location carefully.
Photo: Matt Ryall

Location

The importance of investigating a wide range of locations cannot be underestimated.

If you plan to buy property in an area you know, simply for the reason that you know it well and you like it, this may not be the best way to invest your hard earned cash.

Try not to get too attached to one particular suburb too early in your search process – this is likely to cloud your better judgment and can result in you becoming blindsided to what could potentially be great investment opportunities.

“Try not to get too attached to one particular suburb too early in your search process.”

While it is course important to buy a home in an area you like if you plan to live there long-term, you may find that a neighbouring area is likely to increase your investment return over time while still allowing you the same lifestyle options as your original preference.

Although it can be helpful to have a particular area in mind as a starting point, there may be surrounding suburbs that are more in line with your budget and what you are looking for.

Take the time to research different locations and look at the trends in property prices of each suburb. Do they appear to be on the rise more so than in other nearby areas?

If this is the case, it is likely to continue and you will see growth in value over time.

Lifestyle

Look for a property close to your desired choice of lifestyle.
Photo: Nagarjun Kandukuru

Lifestyle

If you are planning to buy a house to live in, ideally you should look for a property that will offer you access to your desired choice of lifestyle.

You need to give some consideration to what is important to you in a suburb. If you have children or are planning to start a family soon, pay attention to local kinders and schools in the area, as these will become very important.

Research zoning regulations and find out what schools your child will be able to attend, and consider visiting the schools themselves to see whether you would be happy for your kids to go there.

Maybe a suburb that offers a range of community activities is important to you, or one that is only a short distance for you to travel from your work.

Perhaps you will focus more on finding somewhere that has a good selection of local restaurants and cafés.

Where you buy a house doesn’t necessarily have to be in your most desired suburb, but choose somewhere you’ll be happy to live.

When searching for where to buy your next house, check out the Street News Suburb Profiles, Community and Lifestyle sections for more local information.

If you are thinking of buying selling or investing and would like a FREE 5 minute chat
with Street News Director Peter Sarmas, please contact him on 0418 740 606
or via email at [email protected]

About the Author

Peter Sarmas is a Certified Property Investment Advisor (PIAA) and Vendor/Buyer Advocate. Before becoming the founder of Street News, Peter completed a Degree in Applied Science (Chemistry) and a Graduate Diploma in Property Valuations (Hons). Peter believes property investing is a major and potentially risky undertaking. In his view, everyone should have an independent person acting on their behalf when seeking property investment advice.

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