5 things every first-time home buyer should know

1. Research, research, research

The first thing many of us do before we buy a new mobile phone, TV, or even a pair of running shoes, is research. We look up the product online, compare specs and read countless reviews before finally making our decision. You would think most of us would do that on the biggest purchase of our lives - a house. The thing is, we don’t.

2. Check your credit score

The major stumbling block in most property sales is financing, with only one in four home loans being approved.

What many of us do not realise is the importance our credit score plays in this decision. Your credit score will determine the rating the bank and other financial institutions give you after examining how you have handled credit in the past.


3. Work out your affordability

After you have found out your credit score, you can check your affordability. This takes into account your income and expenses to work out the size of the loan you could potentially get from the bank. Knowing how much you could possibly borrow makes the entire process far simpler.


4. Budget before you buy

As simple as this may sound, it can truly save you in the long run. When thinking of buying a home, take an honest look at your finances. Replace your monthly rent with the potential bond repayments, as well as costs like house insurance, rates and taxes, levies and property maintenance. All these costs add up, and could put a strain on your monthly income. Budgeting for other costs like the bond registration fee and transfer costs can also spiral out of control.

5. Consult with professionals before you consider buying

Getting a home loan is a difficult business and can be made even more challenging depending on how you’re employed. A full-time employee with a constant pay cheque is a far more attractive prospect for any lending agent than someone who is self-employed or earning commission-based.


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