10 Hidden Costs of Owning a Home

With the relatively low mortgage interest competing with the continuous rise in rental rates, a lot of individuals and families are now looking to purchase their own homes. The actual cost of a property, though, involves many hidden costs beyond the mortgage payments.

Whether you’re at the closing stage of your purchase or on your evaluation period, you should take some time to consider the additional charges to homeownership – these are expenses that go beyond the mortgage, property taxes, and settling costs.

To help you get started on your budget plan for this, we’ve prepared a list:

1. Moving fees

One of the most important things to take note of when purchasing – you will need to move your things into your new place. Whether you’re hiring movers or doing it yourself with rental vans, this will come with a cost. Moving fees can vary based on the location, the truck size, the amount of stuff you’re bringing in, and the season.

2. Furniture and decorations

You may not have all the furnishings you would need to fill your new space, especially when you’re moving from a smaller place to a bigger one. List down the furniture you may need and plan a budget for furnishing and décor so the expenses won’t surprise you.

3. Renovations or fit-outs

Even when you’re moving into a new home, there would definitely be a few things you would want to change, to truly make it yours. Perhaps you’d want the master bedroom to be repainted or maybe you’d want to add in a small room to use as a home office. It would be good to keep these in mind when budgeting for your home.

4. Maintenance and home repairs

Maintenance and repairs, especially when unexpected, constitute a big part of the costs of owning a home. Always make sure to have funds allocated for unexpected repairs.

5. Utilities

If you are moving from an apartment to a bigger home, expect an increase in your utility expenses. In addition, some of these utilities may ask for an upfront deposit or connection fee to get the services started.

6. Pest control

When you own your house, you’ll have no landlord to call to take care of your pest problems. In an average year, 84% of homeowners deal with a pest problem – whether it be ants, spiders, termites or mice. Dealing with pests can be more expensive than preventing pest infestation, so it would be best to spend for routine maintenance.

7. Exterior maintenance and upkeep

Your home’s exteriors need as much love as its interiors. Think gutters, lawn, paint, sidewalks, and driveway. Gutters will need to be cleaned at least twice a year. Lawns will need maintenance too – you can hire professionals to do this or you can also do it yourself. Also, keep an eye out for peeling paint and cracks along your home’s exterior.

8. Homeowner’s insurance

This is a type of hazard insurance covering any losses from your property or liability coverage from accidents that may occur within its vicinity – this is usually required by lenders. The amount needed for this will depend on factors such as location, so get different quotes for this insurance before deciding to close.

9. Security system

A good way to ensure safety in your home is to install a good security system. This could come in the form of CCTVs, motion-detector lights, or alarm systems. These extra safety features may cost you extra money but could actually also save you a lot in the long run.

10. Homeowners’ Association Fees

Select neighbourhoods have a monthly or annual homeowner’s association fee. These are used for the maintenance of community facilities or any other community event. 

A lot to digest – we know. Many of these expenses can also be hard to budget for, as they may be unexpected. Just always make sure you have sufficient emergency funds for any home repair/maintenance issue that will come up. 

When well prepared, owning a home can prove to be more beneficial than renting. If you’re looking to buy properties and are not sure where to start, Buying Perth Real Estate can help you. Our professionals offer free consultation – feel free to give us a call at (08) 6215 0200 or email us at clive@buyingperthrealestate.com

5 Mistakes that will Affect Your Home Appraisal

Once you’ve bought a house, you’re going to spend and invest a lot to improve it and live a better life. Don’t let these efforts go to waste, especially when the time comes that you have to sell your house.

When it comes to raising your house value, first impressions matter. Here are the avoidable mistakes that will affect your home appraisal:

1. Failed DIY projects and renovations

With the rise and popularity of “Do It Yourself” projects, it’s tempting to join and try making your own to save on money and create your design. However, a lot of these projects can go wrong in an instant, especially if you’re new to the task. Some DIY projects and renovation ideas may seem easy at a glance, but once you get into it, troubles may occur which may affect your house value. 

To prevent this, you can start with simple tasks such as applying new painting. You can also do your research on the best materials and practices or ask for help from people to assist you.

2. Unpleasant house situation

You wouldn’t want to live near mould, mildew, and other moisture problems that seep into your walls and flooring. Another unpleasant situation to avoid is having an old or musty smell. In a home appraisal, most homeowners try to mask these through chemicals, but experts will smell through it (no pun intended) immediately. 

To ensure your home is in pleasant condition, you have to eliminate the root cause of the problem. For moisture problems, you have to check for leaks and fix water problems. For odours, you have to clean your house thoroughly and remove the source. Sprinkling baking soda on affected areas is one of the best things that gets the job done.

3. Poor location

From the neighbourhood to your neighbours, your house location also plays a role in improving your home value. If you’re located in a place with poor conditions such as being near railroad tracks, having loud neighbours, and poor construction quality, chances are your house value will decrease (since most people wouldn’t prefer to live with these stressful circumstances).

When choosing a location, you also have to factor the environment. You have to be close to lifestyle centres, the business district, transportation systems, and public parks. Research the location well by talking to neighbours and studying the area so you can live with peace and quiet. 

4. Not having enough space

There’s always room for more space in a house. This is an indicator that you’re preparing for changes in the future in case you have a growing family, need more storage, or want to transform rooms into work or fun spaces. 

To give you an overview, a house appraisal and inspection covers most of the following: number of bedrooms and bathrooms, square footage, amenities (pool, garden, balcony, curb appeal, etc.), overall layout, appliances, and garage/storage space.

5. Changing market conditions

The real estate market is volatile and ever-changing. One day the market is in your favour, and then the prices suddenly drop the next week. To prepare for this, you have to get expert assistance to help you navigate the market. The expert must be able to predict the prices and should be familiar with the location you’re in so you can get the best deal.  

Your home is valuable, don’t let these mistakes affect it

If you’re thinking of having a home appraisal, you have to avoid these mistakes beforehand to avoid decreasing its value. 

Take care of your home’s market value. For assistance, you can get a free consultation from the buyer’s agents at Buying Perth Real Estate. Contact Clive at clive@buyingperthrealestate.com or give us a call at (08) 6215 0200 or 0412 926 190.

4 Ways to Diversify Your Real Estate Portfolio

Real estate is a strong investment and it’s considered as one of the safest ones. So, for real estate investors, creating and developing their real estate portfolio is a must – and as with any other investment, diversification creates more advantages.

Why diversify?

Despite being a steadier choice, not all real estate investments are created equal. Hospitality, for example, works best around a more relaxed community. Commercial properties, on the other hand, bring more profit to busier streets. Taking location, market, and long-term goals into consideration, diversifying your real estate portfolio allows you to mitigate risks and ensure ongoing and steady growth.  

Now that you’ve found out why let’s talk about the how:

1. Diversify by sector.

The multitude of asset types available in real estate is one of the things that makes it unique. To diversify by sector, you can dive into different residential, commercial, or industrial properties.

Residential

These can range in size, from a single unit to apartments. Residential real estate is a relatively safe choice as the demand for housing is steady. Unlike commercial properties, though, residential units tend to have shorter lease lengths, averaging 6 to 12 months.

Commercial

Commercial properties – office buildings, retails spaces, shopping malls, and more – typically have higher income potential. Leases for this type of property also tend to be longer, averaging 3 to 5 years.

Industrial

Industrial real estate refers to properties mainly used for manufacturing, storage, production and any other similar activities. Even longer than the lease length for commercial spaces, lease for industrial properties can go up to 10 years.  This entails more security and higher return. However, since these types of properties are typically bigger, they are less accessible to individual investors.

2. Diversify through location

A real estate investment’s success is highly anchored to its location, as real estate is hyperlocal. One city may be experiencing a boom while the other is currently at a slowdown. If you diversify across locations, you can use the ups and downs of various markets to your advantage.

3. Diversify by asset class

When investing, it is also important to understand human behaviour. Townhouses, for example, are more profitable in good times – when people tend to rent bigger and more luxurious spaces. Mid-rise apartments, on the other hand, may provide a more moderately priced place, for tough times when people need to downsize.

If you diversify across asset classes, your portfolio will be able to hold up in all parts of the market cycle.

4. Diversify by strategy

You can also diversify your real estate portfolio through diversifying your investment strategies. You can vary your hold time – have a property that you would buy-and-hold and have another that uses the BRRRR (buy, rehab, rent, refinance, repeat) strategy. You may also buy a property in anticipation of selling it for a higher price after a year or two.

Even within a single property type or geographical market, you could counter downturns by diversifying your strategies.

As the real estate market is cyclical, it is important to spread out your investments so you may maximize growth and potential. Start by taking some time to review your current investments and strategies. Take your notes and identify potential risks and benefits. Lastly, remember that in the long-term, diversification will contribute greatly to your investment’s strengths.

If you are planning to expand your real estate investment portfolio and are looking for the next  best property to purchase, the professionals from Buying Perth Real Estate are ready with a free consultation. To find out more, give us a call at (08) 6215 0200 or email us at clive@buyingperthrealestate.com

Why You Shouldn’t Skip Having a Home Inspection

Before you finalize any home purchases, make sure that you conduct a professional home inspection first. Having a home inspection is important to gain a clearer understanding of the property’s condition. Professionals can also uncover any hidden problems and save you from potential pitfalls that might cost you in the future.

To explain further, here are some reasons you shouldn’t skip having a home inspection:

1. It establishes confidence in your purchase.

By having a pre-home inspection, you’ll be able to understand the current condition of your home. It will help you verify if the property you are planning to purchase is in safe and good condition. Everyone definitely wants to move to their new home with peace of mind. Without a professional pre-home inspection, aside from safety, you won’t have the confidence that what you are investing in is worth the huge amount of money that you are putting in. 

2. It can help you weigh options.

Pre-home inspection can reveal the pros and cons of the current condition of the home. In case the pre-home inspection report reveals too many issues and needed repairs for the property, you get to have a chance to weigh other options. Would it be better to buy a different property or build a new home? If the house you are planning to buy requires a lot of fixes, how much will be the overall cost? Also, consider the hassle and work needed for it to be repaired. If you think it will cost you a lot of time and money, you may want to reconsider making an offer on the property. 

This is why pre-home inspection is necessary – its results become one of the factors that you should consider when shortlisting property options and deciding whether or not to purchase a specific property. If you are not available to do the inspection before making an offer, make sure you seek the advice of an experienced buyer’s agent.

3. It gives you the power to negotiate a lower purchase price.

By knowing the current condition of the property, you get to have the power to negotiate a lower purchase price. An inspection report compiles the condition of the home in many aspects. If there are more issues, more repairs are needed. You can either have these issues fixed by the seller or agree that you are going to take care of the repairs only if they lower the property price. Hence, having a home inspection will give you the upper hand on the price negotiation. On the other hand, if it turns out that there aren’t many issues in the property, you are able to verify that you are getting your money’s worth. It will benefit you either way.

4. It can help you plan future repairs and replacements.

A pre-home inspection can give you knowledge of both minor and major issues that the property might have. Having these early warning signs can help you prepare and avoid problems from getting worse. You can plan how to repair and replace these items in the house and be able to budget and schedule them accordingly. An experienced buyer’s agent can tell you the best steps you can do for these issues.

5. It can save you money.

Having a pre-home inspection can save you money in different ways. First, you are saving money by avoiding buying a house that has many hidden and deeply-rooted problems. Second, you’ll be sure that the house you are buying is of high quality. Third, you’ll be aware of all the issues of the house, therefore, being able to prepare for future repairs and replacements. You’ll also be able to tackle these problems before they get worse and before the problems become more expensive.

Don’t ever skip having a pre-home inspection. You might not realize it now but having a pre-home inspection will definitely benefit you in a lot of ways and save you from future woes. You’ll be able to clearly understand the condition of the house you are buying and save money in the long run.

For more property tips and real estate consultations, make sure to contact Buying Perth Real Estate at 08 6215 0200 or send an email to clive@buyingperthrealestate.com.

4 Reasons Why You Should Retire In Perth

Want to move to a different city when you retire? Perth could be the ideal city for you. While each person will consider distinct factors when looking for a place to retire, Australia’s sunniest city is likely to tick most, if not all, of your boxes. Here are four reasons you should retire in Perth. 

1. Weather

If you want to retire in a warm city where you can enjoy plenty of time under the sun, then Perth is your best bet. With an average of 8.8 hours of sunshine per day, Perth is the sunniest city in Australia. December and January are the sunniest months in Perth, with an average of 12 hours of daily sunshine.

Perth’s idyllic weather makes the city a great place to enjoy the outdoors. You can take walks around the city’s numerous parks, enjoy al-fresco dining in a wide variety of open-air restaurants, or take a swim in one of several picturesque beaches. Regardless of the type of outdoor activity you like, Perth’s warm weather is sure to embrace you.

2. Affordability

When you retire, you want to make the most of your retirement income. Affordability is a major concern for any retiree, which is why it makes a lot of sense to retire in Perth. 

According to data, Perth is currently the most affordable capital city in Australia to buy a house in. As of June 2021, figures show that Perth has the lowest median house price among Australia’s capital cities. If you want to buy a retirement home in Perth, then now is the best time to start planning.

It isn’t just housing that’s cheap in Perth. The general cost of living in Perth is also affordable, and the prices of goods and services have significantly decreased over the last few years. Furthermore, the Economist Intelligence Unit has ranked Perth as Australia’s most affordable capital city. Perth is definitely an excellent choice for anyone looking to stretch their retirement money.

3. Healthcare

When deciding on a retirement city, easy access to healthcare should be one of your top priorities. Australia’s healthcare system has always ranked as one of the world’s best, and things are no different in Perth.

If you choose to retire in Perth, you’ll have access to numerous private and public healthcare. Some of the biggest hospitals in Perth include Royal Perth Hospital, Fiona Stanley hospital, Sir Charles Gardiner Hospital, Princess Margret Children’s Hospital, and Joondalup Health Campus. Plus, numerous Private hospitals such as the Mount Hospital, St. God of Johns Murdoch, and Hollywood Hospital.

As you age, you’ll also be able to get the services of specialists when necessary. Perth also has a large network of specialists for retirees and the elderly such as cardiologists, neurologists, ophthalmologists, and physical therapists.

4. Arts, entertainment, and culture

Perth is a great city for you if you want to spend your retirement admiring paintings, sculptures, and other works of art. The city has a ton of great art museums such as the Art Gallery of Western Australia (part of the Perth Cultural Center), the Museum of Performing Arts, and Linton and Kay Galleries.

If you’re a fan of concerts and live music, Perth offers many of those events as well. The Perth Arena (RAC) has hosted world-famous artists like Elton John, Journey, Michael Bublé, Cher, Celine Dion, Mariah Carey, Fleetwood Mac, and many more.

Prefer sporting events to live music? The Perth Arena also hosts sporting events that include basketball, tennis, and even mixed martial arts.

If you’re looking for the ideal retirement home in Perth, the experts at Buying Perth Real Estate can assist you. Our experienced buyer’s agents can help you find the best deal for the retirement home you’ve always wanted. Feel free to give us a call at 08 6215 0200 or send an email to clive@buyingperthrealestate.com.