Three questions to answer before you start building your new home

Three questions to answer before you start building your new homeWhen to comes to building a new home, there are many moving parts and possibly hundreds of thing to consider from the needs of your growing family to the style of the home you want and the all important budget.

In my experience working with possibly hundreds of home buyers over the last 12 years; there are Three Big Questions you need to consider that will give you a solid context moving forward with building your new home….

1. Where do you want to live?
2. How are you going to finance you new home?
3. What is your timeframe?

All three of these questions will feed back into each other as you work through and discuss them with partners, family members etc. For instance, you may want to live in a great suburb close to certain schools however your budget may not be quite what you need to do this, so you look at other locations that will fit the budget in areas that you still like. It’s always a strategic trade-off however I personally believe that the suburb/location is the most important part of these three.

Location is what gives you the life-style you are looking for: proximity to amenities such as Schools, Transport, Shops, Motorways, Parks, Walking/Bike tracks, Dog Parks etc. These are the components of urban living that we all value and want at our doorstep.

On the finance side of things, this is a journey all in itself… Do you have to sell your existing home before you can move forward with your new home? Can you afford to take the equity out of your existing home loan, build the new home and then sell the old one? Can I get a straight answer from the Bank? Many years ago I used to be a Mortgage Broker so I have an understanding of how complex (and stressful) this can be. And it’s your money, so anxiety is almost guaranteed!! The best advice I can give you here is only work with someone you trust; Banker or Broker. We have a few great quality brokers we can refer you to for this however I recommend you speak with a few and ‘go with your gut’.

With timeframe, the most important issue here is transparency. Builders will tell you it takes 14-16 weeks to build a home however that is not the full story. It will take 30-45 days to complete the purchase of the land, then AFTER you own the land, you may sign a building contract. This will take another 4-6 weeks through Certification before it is lodged with Council – for another 4-6 week until your building application is approved. Some builders can get onsite within 2 weeks of receiving the building approval and then the “14-16 weeks” starts…. not to mention possible rain delays, public holidays and larger shut-down periods like Easter and Christmas. I tell my clients that from when you sign the land contact until you move into your new home will be approximately 9-12 months. This can be reduced by up to a month or so when everyone gets organised however this is a realistic timeframe.

I hope this information has been helpful for your consideration of building your new home. Feel free to reply to this email with any questions you may have or to discuss your specific situation in more detail.

I look forward to hearing from you soon!

Three Easy ways to Pay Out your Home Loan Early … Plus a bonus!

Three Easy ways to Pay Out your Home Loan EarlyMortgages are funny things. When you get approval from the bank, you’re so happy and relieved that you often forget that your home loan needs a regular check-up.

Mortgages can seem complicated with everything from interest rate, term of the loan, repayment amount and frequency etc impacting on how much you pay.

In this blog post, we have simplified the process down to the three elements we believe will help you take control of your home loan, so you feel a bit more in charge of the process.

1. RE-NEGOTIATE WITH YOUR BANK EVERY SIX MONTHS

If you see your banks competitors offering a better rate – use this information as a negotiating tactic to get a better interest rate. I know you may feel uncomfortable asking for this however this so think about it this way – a .5% difference on a $400,000 loan is $2,000; how much overtime, extra work etc would you have to do to have $2,000 (after tax) in your hand…. Feeling a bit more comfortable asking the bank now??

It’s absolutely worthwhile ringing up your bank and pushing for a better rate. Use comparison websites to check whether your home loan rate is competitive and know what the competition is offering.

2. MAKE PAYMENTS MORE OFTEN

Most of us know this by now – it’s straightforward maths – switch your payment from monthly to fortnightly. This will have about the same impact on your budget as one monthly repayment, but because there are 52 weeks in a year, fortnightly repayments will result in 13 repayments a year instead of 12. You’ll be making an entire extra repayment every year without having to scrounge around for the extra money.

For example; if your mortgage was $200,000 over 30 years at 5% interest, making fortnightly repayments would save you $34,328 in interest and allow you to pay off the loan up to five years early.

3. USE A 100% OFFSET ACCOUNT

Most banks will offer to attach an offset account to your loan account – but make sure it’s a 100% offset account. An offset account means that any money sitting in this account will reduce the amount of interest you pay on your loan. Getting all your salary or wages paid into the offset account is the easiest way to maximise your offset accounts effectiveness.

BONUS TIP – SIMPLY INCREASE YOUR REPAYMENTS

Paying more than required is the simplest way to pay off your home faster. It’s also the most obvious and overlooked strategy. Just adding $50 per week can save up to four years on a typical loan.

I hope this information has been helpful for your consideration of building your new home. Feel free to reply to this email with any questions you may have or to discuss your specific situation in more detail.

I look forward to hearing from you soon!