Have you got your big kids pants on? Buying a home is not for the faint-hearted or the half-hearted. You need to be absolutely sure before you jump on that sometimes-wobbly property ladder.
Getting a feel
Even if you’re just thinking about getting into house-buying mode, start looking at some properties that you like, go to open homes and talk to agents about where they see the market sitting.
You’ll pretty quickly get a feel for what’s for sale and what sort of property you’ll get for your money.
Will this be your first home? Check out our guide for first home buyers.
If you already own a home, visit our Property Insights tool to compare what your own property’s estimated market value is with what you’re looking to sell it for. It’s also worth looking at the condition of properties on the market and consider how they compare with your own.
Ask an agent to give you a market appraisal on your home. Talk to your bank manager about how much you could potentially borrow for a new property.
Are you going to sell your existing home or keep it and rent one out? Are you buying your second property as a holiday home? Work out how much your home loan repayments could be with Westpac's mortgage calculator.
If you’re going to be selling your home to buy your next one, remember that you’ll be selling and buying in the same market. Your home will hopefully be worth more now than when you bought it, so you should be able to afford more to buy your next home.
What bugs you?
Think about what bugs you about your existing home or what you want more of in a new place (sun, views, second bathroom, better neighbours), and compare whether it’s better to do this by renovating your existing home or finding one that ticks the boxes.
Weighing it all up
But hold on… how about that big overseas holiday you were planning? Or the new car? Consider all the other big things you’re planning to spend money on and decide whether you can commit to buying a property now or whether it’s better to save more for your deposit.