How to find your ‘forever home’

November 30, 2015
Ali Batten

With the prices at an all-time high in the property market, it seems like forever until we find our ideal first home. Taking a long-term view might give you what you are looking for.

Buying, selling and buying property again can be stressful and expensive. First there is stamp duty, which is around $27,318 in NSW for a $700,000 property. Then there is the cost of moving, buying new things and reconnecting utilities, not to mention all the time spent getting organised to move.
It’s hard not to become emotionally attached to a property. It’s where memories are made and it can be a stable, grounding force for children. There are also benefits in staying in one house for a long time, such as making lasting connections in your community.

So how do you know if a property has the potential to be your “forever home”?
A property has to be somewhere you can see yourself living in 20 or 30 years’ time. Currently with prices at record highs in some areas, few people can afford their ideal home in their preferred neighbourhood the first time around. Instead, many of us assume we will buy a “starter home” before using capital growth accrued over a series of purchases to upgrade to our dream home.
But it is possible to take a long-term view when buying your first home and avoid a series of costly and possibly unnecessary moves. You should consider how the property would adapt to different life stages. For example, if you plan to have children, can the house expand to meet the needs of a growing family? It may be practical for young children to share a bedroom but teens value privacy and are likely to want their own rooms.

If you plan to live in the property long enough to retire there, think about how you will use the extra space once any children have left and whether the house will work when you are less mobile. Stairs or bathrooms on different levels to the bedrooms, for example, may be problematic when you are older.
Obviously, finding a property that you buy now is unlikely to meet all your needs for your entire life but if you want to buy a “forever home” – or at least a long-term home – adaptability is the key.

Contact either Owun, Suzanne or Costa on 02 9517 1818 or to discuss your options. Or, if you feel like dropping in at our office, we are located at Suite 106, Flourmill Studios, 3 Gladstone Street, Newtown 2042. Be sure to share our blog on Facebook and Twitter and let others join the conversation!

Posted in: First home buyers

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