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Preparing for a spring property purchase

Spring has almost sprung and in the property world, it’s an exciting time of year.

So, what will this year’s spring selling season look like?

Property prices are still on the rise in many markets, despite the Reserve Bank of Australia’s aggressive interest rate hikes since May 2022. Property prices rose 0.7 per cent in July – the fifth straight month of gains.

Listings are also on the rise but remain below 2022 levels. If you’re a prospective buyer, you’ll need to be ready to pounce when you find a bargain this spring. Here are our tips for being ready.

Tip 1: Do your research

The property market is constantly changing. If you’re looking to buy, you’ll want to make sure you have the latest information at your fingertips so that you’re confident when making an offer.

We can provide a range of reports to help you cover your bases. Get suburb reports with all the info you need to narrow down your property search. Access property reports with valuation ranges, recent sales data and more.

Tip 2: Get your finances in order

If you do find a bargain, you’ll want to be ready to jump on it. Speak to us about organising pre-approval on your finance sooner rather than later.

Pre-approval means a bank has agreed, in principle, to lend you a certain amount of money.

Having pre-approval gives you confidence during price negotiations with vendors. It may also give you an edge over other buyers without pre-approved finance.

Tip 3: Find out why the vendor is selling

Understanding the vendor’s motivation to sell may give you an upper hand during negotiations.

What type of settlement terms and deposit will be most attractive to them?

They may be moving interstate, or need liquidity fast, in which case they may drop their price for a shorter settlement.

Maybe they need an extra-long settlement while they find somewhere else to live.

Or perhaps a larger deposit would make you more favourable compared to other buyers?

Ask the real estate agent why the vendor is selling and use the information as a negotiation tool.

Tip 4: Rally your team

If you’re planning a spring property purchase, start thinking about which professionals you want on your team.

You’ll need a reputable conveyancer or solicitor to take care of the legalities for you.

Depending on the area you are looking to buy into, you may benefit from a Sydney Buyers Agent who can help you with the negotiations

In addition, you’ll want to line up building and pest inspectors to make sure the property is free of unwanted surprises like termites and structural defects. If they do discover anything untoward, remember you can use this as ammo during price negotiations.

As your finance broker, we’ll compare the market and suggest a competitive home loan that meets your specific financial situation and goals.

Get in touch

Property prices are on the rise in many markets, but there are plenty of opportunities out there for savvy buyers.

Get in touch today to organise pre-approval on your finance and be ready to buy your first home, next home or an investment property this spring.

Tips for buying sight unseen

There’s no doubt about it. Buying sight unseen – that is, purchasing a property without viewing it in person – can be risky.

What if it has a strange smell when you finally do enter the property?

What if it’s a little darker than how it appeared in the advertisement photos?

What if the neighbour has a junkyard encroaching on your doorstep or there’s a huge electrical tower outside?

These are all valid concerns, but despite this, some property hunters are still diving in with a sight-unseen regional or interstate purchase. Why?

One common reason is that low levels of new listings is creating fierce competition between buyers in some markets, and savvy investors know that when an opportunity arises, sometimes you just need to jump.

So, how do you mitigate risk when buying sight unseen? Here are some tips.

Know your ‘why’ and do your research

Investors usually buy for either capital growth potential or for cash flow. What is your driver? This will ultimately affect the type of property you buy.

If capital growth is the end goal, consider:

  • Population changes – Is the area expected to grow? Are more jobs likely to become available and attract more people to the area?
  • Supply and demand – Is there a strong demand for housing in the area? A lack of supply and strong demand could be a recipe for price growth.
  • Lifestyle appeal – Is it a place where people want to live? Is it a ‘leafy’ suburb, for example, or near the beach? Is the area being gentrified with new properties and amenities?
  • Statistical indicators – Consider the historical capital growth. What are the vacancy rates like? Are vendors discounting?
  • Infrastructure and amenities – Are there any planned infrastructure improvements or zoning changes that could affect capital growth? Is there good access to amenities like transport links and schools?

If you are buying purely for cash flow, you’ll want to find a property with a high yield. With this strategy, the rental income will likely cover the costs associated with owning the property.

Our Sydney Buyers Agents have transacted over 2000 properties since we first set up our business in 2005 – this is what they do best, day in and day out. Check out Buyers Agents Services

With over 176 Google 5 star reviews (and counting) – we like to think we are doing great things for our clients hence the great reviews … check out our Google reviews here…

Do an inspection  

If there’s one thing that the pandemic taught us, it’s that you can do more than you think remotely.

With so many online resources available, it’s possible to find your next real estate investment, do extensive research online, get a feel for the neighbourhood on Google maps, and even do an inspection – all from your computer, iPad or smartphone.

These days most real estate agents will happily do a virtual walkthrough with you via a video call. However, if you can get someone to physically inspect the property on your behalf, that’s always preferrable.

It could be a family member or friend whose judgement you trust. Otherwise, you may consider hiring a buyer’s agent. They can do inspections, offer advice and bid on your behalf at auction.

As with any property purchase, don’t forget to get building and pest inspections.

Get a valuation

An official valuation is a great way to get a true indication of a property’s value and to make sure you’re not overpaying.

If you’re purchasing sight unseen, it’s worth considering paying the money for a valuation for peace of mind.

Speak to a property manager

Once you buy an investment property, you’ll likely get a property manager to take care of it for you. Why not consider enlisting their help sooner rather than later?

If you’re buying sight unseen, they can provide market insights and help answer any questions you may have.

Ready to get started?

Keeping an open mind to opportunities that aren’t necessarily in your own backyard can pay off, as long as you do your research and due diligence.

If you’re considering buying an interstate or regional property sight unseen, it’s important to have your finance in order.

Speak to us about organising pre-approval, so that you’re ready to go when the right property comes along. Get in touch today. 

You are welcome to have a look at our website to get an understanding of our full service offering – https://stratgroup.com.au/services/ 

Why use a mortgage broker to refinance?

Do you remember dial-up internet access?

How about audio cassettes?

Don’t worry if you don’t; they are, of course, a thing of the past.

A 30-year mortgage with one lender is a bit the same – a thing of the past and something that is largely obsolete nowadays. Especially given the current climate.

With the cost of living going through the roof and home loan interest rates shooting up from a record low of 0.1 since last May, more and more people are refinancing their mortgages – 2,370 every working day in Australia, to be precise.

Homeowners have experienced the fastest tightening cycle in a generation, and many are ditching their current lender for a more competitive mortgage elsewhere.

Analysis from the Australian Banking Association (ABA) found 70 per cent of bank customers who refinanced their mortgage in the past six months did so with another lender.

If, like them, you feel it’s time to shop around, here’s why you should use a mortgage broker to refinance.

Expertise you can trust

At the moment there is intense competition in the home loan industry. Banks are hungry for your business and are offering all sorts of sweeteners to get you on board.

Cashback offers. Rate discounts. Package deals. The whole shebang.

So, how do you know which home loan is most suited for you?

That’s where you need a professional on your team. A mortgage broker is a trained finance specialist. We know the system and which products best suit our clients’ needs.

We are also across all the latest industry developments, so you gain access to a wealth of knowledge by working with us.

Tailored finance solutions

There are no one-size-fits-all mortgages. Everyone’s financial situation and goals are different, which is why you need tailored financial solutions.

We’ll find a loan that’s appropriate for your specific needs. If we think you could benefit from loan features like an offset account or redraw facility, we’ll explain why. But we must work in your best interests and won’t push any extras on you that you don’t actually need.

Options, options and more options

If you go directly to your current lender asking for a more competitive rate, you only get what they are able to offer i.e. their loan products and the rates they are prepared  to put on the table.

We, on the other hand, have access to the full smorgasbord – a panel of lenders with different types of products, features and benefits.

What about commissions? The commissions we receive are pretty similar across lenders. This ensures there’s no incentive for a broker to recommend one over another. Our role and obligation is to act in our client’s best interests.

Make your life easier

Trying to understand all the different home loan products out there can be stressful and overwhelming. With a mortgage broker, we can take the burden out of refinancing.

We can also liaise with your chosen lender and facilitate the whole process.

Prepare for the fixed-rate cliff

One-fifth of Australian home loans will revert from fixed to variable in 2023. Do you fall into this category?

If you do, it’s worth speaking to a mortgage broker about your refinancing options. Your current lender’s variable rate may not be the most competitive or appropriate for your circumstances, so it’s important to get a second opinion.

When your fixed rate expires, you have 3 options:

  1. Refix
  2. Reprice
  3. Refinance

Common reasons to refinance

  • Secure a more competitive interest rate
  • Make the most of possible interest-saving features like offset accounts or redraw facilities
  • Access equity for renovations, additional properties or other financial goals
  • Consolidate debt.

Like to chat?

We understand the market. We understand mortgages. And we’ll take the time to understand your financial situation and goals.

Speak to us about how your home loan compares to others and we will explain if switching lenders could be financially worthwhile. Get in touch today.

You are welcome to have a look at our website to get an understanding of our full-service offering – https://stratgroup.com.au/services/