Get set with a property buying game plan

If you plan to buy a house this summer, have you worked out a strategy for how to go about it?

It's competitive out there, so having a good game plan could give you the edge over all those other prospective buyers.

Before you step out the door, getting your finances in order will be a great start.

Whether you are looking for a first home buyer loan or an investment home loan, knowing about the different lending products available will help find one best geared to your needs.

The further step of getting loan pre-approval will then let you bid at auctions and also give you the confidence to narrow the range of properties you look at to those you know you can afford.

Once you're out and about, go and see as many places as you can! Whether by visiting open homes or through private appointment, give yourself maximum odds to stumble across something great.

To keep on track, draw up a checklist of all the things you want in a house, piece of land or rental property – depending on what you want, of course.

Along with the selling price, be sure to put the most important attributes in a non-negotiable column.

It pays to be tough – you don't want to be so caught up in say, the beauty of the back garden, that you lose perspective and don't notice that the house has no bathrooms!

Extreme examples aside, as well as being tough, be inquisitive. Ask lots of questions, and also take photos if you are permitted to.

These will be helpful when you're comparing the many different places you've visited.

When you're ready to make an offer, or bid on a property at auction, keep your game face on!

Stick to your plan and to what you can afford – and of course hope for the best!