Factors to consider before buying a home

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After weeks or even months of going through listings, visiting open houses, and talking to real estate agents, you’ve finally found a property you think would be ideal for you and your family.  

While you may have fallen in love with the ample space, nice front lawn, and well-appointed kitchen, it pays to consider other factors that would affect the value and liveability of the property.

Listed here are some factors to consider before signing on the dotted line and buying a home:

  1. Find out what lies beneath the appealing exterior.

A lovely façade may conceal a whole range of structural issues, gruesome pest problems, and hazardous residues. To avoid regretting your decision, or having to spend thousands of dollars on repairs, decontamination, and pest control down the road, consider hiring the following professionals:

Structural surveyor

The Law Society of New South Wales reminds buyers of their obligations once they sign a contract. They have to take the property as it stands – structural defects included. Hence, it pays to have the premises inspected by a structural surveyor before finalising the purchase.  

If it turns out the place has an ancient plumbing system or needs a new roof, you could negotiate a lower sales price to offset for the property’s shortcomings. 

Pest inspector

A qualified pest inspector will check all parts of the structure to pinpoint any pest activity, especially termite infestations, which are known to cause internal damage to the structure.

If it turns out the place is riddled with termites, the pest inspector can implement a series of reactive and preventative measures to rid the home of the infestation.

Meth lab cleaning technicians

If you suspect that the home’s previous or current inhabitants may have used meth or operated a meth lab on the premises, consider having the place inspected and decontaminated by professional meth lab cleaning technicians before moving in.

Even if the property has no past connections to meth, you should consider using a DIY drug testing kit or having professional technicians inspect the property to ensure there are no traces of contamination. The health consequences of meth contamination can be serious, and young children are particularly at risk.

  1. Engage a solicitor for legal advice and services.

Before you sign anything, consider engaging a solicitor to advise you on the legal aspects of the purchase process and transaction. A solicitor will conduct background checks on the property with council and government departments, and will examine details that could affect the property, such as zoning, land taxes, and transport proposals.

Moreover, a good solicitor can help you understand your obligations under the mortgage contract, and assist you in claiming any government grants you may be entitled to.

  1. Check out the neighbourhood’s crime rate.

Though crime rates and meth labs are probably the furthest thing from your mind when you’re trying to acquire a dream home for your family, these are checks you need to perform to ensure their well-being.  

Just because the street the home is located on isn’t particularly run down or frequented by shady characters doesn’t mean that crime isn’t a problem. You can check up on crime rates by using online resources or checking with local authorities. Myboot.com.au offers free profiles and crime statistics of different Aussie suburbs. News websites are another suitable resource when researching crime statistics in a neighbourhood.

  1. Check out the suburb’s school catchment zone.

If you have children or plan to have children in the future, the suburb’s school catchment zone is an important consideration. When assessing unfamiliar suburbs, consider checking out which school catchment the property falls under.

Residing in a good school catchment zone can drive up property prices over time, which would be a boon if you decide to sell your home in the future. It could also ensure that your kids get into a reputable school.

Whether you are looking to buy your first home, move home, refinance, or invest in property, a mortgage broker can help. Access loans from all the major lenders, get help with paperwork – plus there is no charge for this service. Get help from a local mortgage broker

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