Quick Guide Buyers Checklist


What to look for in a property

When you're thinking of buying, your requirements will vary depending on your personal circumstances and on the sort of property you wish to buy.

You may be looking for a family home, an investment property or a holiday home. Once you have found the property of your dreams, you may want to pause for a while and reflect before making an offer or signing on the dotted line.

Consider the following checklist:

  • Before you decide on anything do you have your loan approved?
  • Will you enjoy living in the neighbourhood?
  • Is the house sound? If you have any doubts at all, hire building and pest inspectors to check
  • Is it in an area likely to hold resale value or benefit from capital growth?
  • Are there any long-term costs or issues such as body corporate fees, jointly owned driveways?
  • What type of Title is the property? Is it Unit Title, Cross Lease, Strata Title, or some other? Ask your solicitor to advise on the Title
  • Does the entire house, including alterations, have the required Council permits?
  • Is it built for the climate? Is it insulated? Will it be warm in winter, cool in summer?
  • Have you asked your local council about planning issues like the possibility of any big developments planned or construction of new roads nearby?
  • If big changes are needed to make the property comfortable, then it's a good idea to know the costs before you make an offer
  • Is the house and land suitable for your stage in life - are there too many stairs, is the garden too steep?

Then think about the detail:

  • Does the house have enough bedrooms?
  • Are you happy with the garden - or its potential?
  • Will you have good access to the facilities you need such as schools, doctor, medical centres and shops?
  • Are there enough bathrooms?
  • Is there enough garage space? Is the garage accessible from inside the house?
  • Will you have problems with traffic or noise?
  • Is the kitchen serviceable?
  • Is it safe for your family, eg children, the elderly or disabled?
  • Is it suitable for pets?
  • Are you happy with the building's security?
  • Check under the house - is it dry?
  • Is the block well drained?

Buying in a rural or coastal area?

You may also wish to consider other practical issues, such as:

  • Is there a good water supply?
  • Is there any risk of flooding or erosion?
  • How much maintenance work will you need to do - or pay someone else to do?
  • Are you likely to be bothered by nearby farming or orchard work?
  • Are there any industries in the area that could affect you?
  • Will you still have easy access to your family, friends, work and recreation?
  • What will be the long term impact of corrosive sea air?

More interesting resources you might like...

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