By Eleanore D. Sanchez

You are now at that point where you feel confident about getting a home mortgage to finally buy that abode you’ve always dreamed of. You have taken the first steps and are shopping around for a good home loan.

Before you sign on the dotted line, here are some of the upfront costs you will have to think about in getting a home mortgage, according to the ING Direct website:
  1. Deposit—this usually amounts to 20% of the property value, which frees you up from the need to take out mortgage insurance. Also, a savings history in the form of at least three months’ worth of bank statements could help your case. An immediate family member could also help you out with this by using some of the equity on their own property.
  2. Stamp duty—this refers to the taxes the government will put on your mortgage documents and on the property itself.
  3. Conveyancing—the process of transferring ownership from one individual to another through solicitors or conveyancers.
  4. Lenders mortgage insurance—you will need this especially if you are taking out more than 80% of the property’s purchase price to borrow from the bank.
  5. Building and home and contents insurance—this is something you need to think about once contracts change hands. Owner-occupiers also have to think about having the contents of their homes insured.
  6. Moving costs—includes utilities connections, moving, cleaning, and removal
  7. Strata searches and building and pest inspections—be sure to organize a strata search and pest inspection before committing to buy a property. It entails a little cost, but it will save money in the long run.

It can be confusing to know whether to get a variable rate or fixed rate mortgage, and what features are important. That's why it's important to not only check the right rates, but make sure that you're getting the right features in your home loan. Get help choosing the right home loan