Planning when buying pays dividends

Using a systematic approach to buying a home can save you hours of work and considerable heartache.

If you approach buying systematically, you can also optimise your chances of getting the best deal for your money.

To form a plan, you will need to talk to your lending organisation and establish the price range in which you can buy.

Once the buying range has been established, the next step is to prepare a suburb priority list based on personal preferences. Sit down and consider where you would like to live and for what reasons.

Always remember: “It is better to buy the worst house in the best street, than to buy the best house in the worst street”

You need to think about accessibility to work, such facilities as schools, hospitals and shops according to your needs.

Having drawn up a priority list, buyers should then contact their local Real Estate Institute office for a list of REI members in the suburbs they wish to buy. REI members have access to the latest statistical data and analysis from the REI and will be happy to help buyers seek the property right for them.

Be receptive to professional advice from real estate practitioners but remember that it will be your home and your decision.

By using this approach, prospective buyers can assemble and absorb market knowledge about each of the preferred suburbs or areas quickly.

One last word of advice: a house is worth what the buyer is prepared to pay for it. Naturally, sellers have an emotional attachment to their home and this can sometimes result in overpricing.

So if you like the house, but are not prepared to pay the full asking price, make a realistic offer. You may be pleasantly surprised!

Prepared in conjunction with the Real Estate Institute of Queensland.