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  • Writer's pictureSimon Wendt

How to save more than $62,000 on your next home

The Melbourne property market is strong right now. And the property pundits are predicting further increases (10%-15%) for this year. The median unit price in Mentone is $588,000 and the median house price is $1,200,000. I have been selling in this area for over 11 years now and back when I began selling in Mentone, prices were less than half what they are today. This means an average annual growth rate of more than 7% compounding as time goes on. Depressed much? Feel like you will never get in? Don't despair, there is a way in!

Most property buyers spend an unnecessary amount of time searching for a unicorn. A pot of gold at the end of a rainbow only to find that it was fools gold they were hunting for all along. It is human nature to want to protect our selves and when it comes to our finances we are extra cautious. It's natural to want to save money and what better way that by finding a bargain property. The stakes are high so a keen eye out will possibly lead you to a bargain buy propelling you up high on the property ladder. Right?

Let me save you some money, time and heartache.

I have learnt many things about buying property in my time as a real estate agent, professionally and personally. I have been a property buyer myself and I meet property buyers every day in my professional capacity and we ALL want to save some money on our property but I like many others have learnt the hard way that complacency costs you money. By complacency I mean wasting time looking for the unicorn property. You need to get educated on property values and fast. At the capital growth rate we are seeing now, every day you don't buy a property it is costing you about $244. Leave it for a week and you would have been almost $2000 better of to buy the prior weekend. The average buyer looks for about 9 months before buying so at that rate you will be over $62,000 in the hole by the time you buy. This is in Mentone and you can do your own sums at the current growth rate in your suburb of choice but wherever you look, the numbers are real dollars that will either be in your pocket or not.

It is easy to get educated on property values, you can start with online research HERE. Don't get too cute with your optimism. I would in most things in life suggest optimism, however in a rising market, you need realism because optimism can paralyse you into inaction which can cost you big time.

Be open minded and flexible in your search criteria. Look in lower price brackets as well for properties you can renovate to your own tastes. It is easier than you might think to get professional help to create your vision instead of waiting for the perfect home to float down from the heavens in to your lap. By the time it does, the market will have gone up or other buyers also want it pushing the price up.

Surround yourself with the professional people you will need to make the purchase successfully. You will need a conveyancer, a building inspector, a pest inspector, a builder (to quote on alterations) and a real estate agent.

Pay a little bit more than the other buyers. It may sound counter-intuitive but although we agents often have trouble believing the prices people pay, and we say, "That was a great result!" "Never before has anyone paid that much!" However these statements are often the interlude between the old values and the new values. This great result becomes the precedent and when we look back in hindsight, we now say, "it looks cheap now" "I bet you wish you bought 10 properties back then".

After not too long, I can tell you that you will look back and they are all bargains. Every one of them. Even if you can't detect it at the time, before too long you will look back and you will know it too.

In real estate there is an old adage you should never forget, '"It's not about timing the market, it is about time-in the market." So go on, what are you waiting for? Get in to it before it is too late.

For all real estate related information or advice, contact the author Simon Wendt, Licensed Estate Agent at Hockingstuart Mentone on 0407 040 706.

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