Christmas bells are ringing, which means that many Aussies’ social calendars are getting full and if you’re a first home buyer this is good news. Here’s why December can be a great month to make your Christmas wish come true and snag your first home.
Sellers are more motivated in December.
When you’re looking at buying in the summertime, the window of opportunity is small. Generally speaking, there isn’t a lot of movement in the property market in January, so those sellers who do list in December are looking to get out in December. Not only that, but those who snapped up a property in spring will be listing their existing home with the same goal in mind. And with eager sellers filling the market, your chances of finding a great place at a great price are looking good.
It’s the prime time for first home buyers to enter the market.
This year we’ve seen a drastically different property market to years before. From falling house prices in Sydney and Melbourne to stricter lending criteria leaving investors on the sidelines, the property forecast is fine and sunny for keen first home buyers.
You might be able to haggle a better deal.
When you combine desperate sellers and an end-of-December deadline, what do you get? The perfect opportunity to haggle. Even if the price is listed on the for sale sign, there’s always an opportunity to negotiate a better price. Make sure that you get a property and pest inspection report and use this as a way to justify the reason for knocking the price down. Don’t forget the less money you pay for the property, the more you’ll also save in stamp duty, because the value of your home will determine how much stamp duty you’ll have to fork out. As a first time buyer If the property in NSW is less than $650,000 you won’t pay stamp duty.
There are more properties and less competition.
With most Aussies spending their weekends at Christmas parties rather than auctions, there’s a good chance you’ll see fewer buyers showing up to inspections | Steve Jovcevski, mozo.com.au
Record low interest rates.
The RBA official cash rate is at an all time low, meaning record low interest rates are on offer for savvy home buyers. And while there are plenty of options to choose from, Greater Bank’s Great Rate home loan, was awarded a 2018 Mozo Experts Choice Award for First Home Buyer Home Loans. It features no monthly or annual fees and the option to make extra repayments with no penalty.
A word on some of the cons
While December is a great time for first home buyers looking to get their foot on the property market, there are a few things to keep in mind before you kick off your December home search:
Summer can cast a rose-coloured glow on properties.
You can expect to encounter things like perfectly manicured lawns, sun-filled rooms and warm living spaces at a December inspection. And with homes looking spic and span in the warmer months, you’ll need to take into account how the property will do all year round. Keep an eye out for chipped paint on the walls, evidence of mould damage and poor drainage so you’re not shoveling water out of a flooded garage come July.
You may be rushed in a fast-moving December market.
Sellers aren’t the only one’s looking to make a move before the January lull, and while there may be less December buyers in quantity, you’re more likely to come across other quality buyers. If you’re serious about finding your first home, bid with confidence by getting pre-approved for a loan, this way you can speed up the settlement process.
Now you’re ready to get out into the December property market with your best foot forward. Good luck!
Steve Jovcevski is a property expert at mozo.com.au. With an extensive knowledge of home loan products and property trends, Steve is full of practical tips to help first home buyers, refinancers or investors build and get the most out of their property portfolio.