Buying & Moving into Your Own Place

Story Highlights
  • #1 – Save up for a deposit
  • #2 – Build your credit score
  • #3 – Don't forget the pre-approved loan
  • #4 – Be sensible when choosing an area
  • #5 – Let the house-hunting begin

You have finally decided that this is the year you are going to be buying and moving into your own place.

This is an exciting first step to enjoying the freedom adulthood has to offer. It is also the perfect opportunity for you to start building your investment portfolio.

First-time homeownership can pave the way for further property purchases and ultimately financial freedom.

Before you get there, however, there are several things to keep in mind. Here are a few tips to consider before buying and moving into your own place:

#1 – Save up for a deposit

Saving up for a deposit is always the best way to start your homeownership journey. Lenders will see that you are serious about owning a house and this will count in your favour.

A deposit will lessen the amount of the loan, which also means your bond repayments won’t be as big every month.

A deposit might also secure you a lower interest rate which can save you money in the short and long term.

Put as much money away as you possibly can and remember, the bigger your deposit, the better! 

#2 – Build your credit score

Along with a deposit, you also need to have a healthy credit score.

Lenders will look at your credit score to determine whether you will be able to afford bond repayments on a monthly basis. That little three-digit number tells lenders how credit-worthy you are.

The better your credit score, the higher the chances of your bond application being approved.

If you have a poor credit score, you can improve it by paying off some of your debt and closing any unnecessary accounts. You should also avoid making new debt during the home buying process. 

#3 – Don’t forget the pre-approved loan

This is something that many people forget when they start house hunting.

Pre-approval is an essential step in the home buying journey and it can be very beneficial to you as the buyer. A pre-approved loan gives you an idea of how much you can afford, which makes it easier to look for property within your budget.

It also makes you stand out above the rest of the buyers because it proves that you can secure financing for a loan.

Remember, sellers like buyers that are serious about purchasing real estate and they will consider you before someone who has not been pre-approved yet. 

#4 – Be sensible when choosing an area

The golden rule in real estate is location, location, location.

Even if you buy the smallest house in the nicest area, it’s still going to be worth more than the biggest house in a bad area.

When you choose the area, be sensible in your decision. Ask yourself whether you want to buy a townhouse, flat, or sectional unit. Next, determine your surroundings. Do you want to live near family and friends or do you want a fresh start? What nearby amenities can you absolutely not live without?

It would also be a good idea to buy close to your place of employment so that you don’t have to spend a ton of money on transport or petrol, or worse, sitting in traffic every day!

#5 – Let the house-hunting begin

Once you have determined your preferences and decided on an area, you can start the house-hunting journey.

Make a list of the absolute must-haves that you want in your new home, like, for instance, a big garden, a pool, or an extra room that can be turned into a functional home office.

Then, make a list of the nice-to-haves that you are willing to compromise on. And finally, you should also jot down a list of things that you definitely DO NOT want in a house.

This will help narrow down your choices and make the house-hunting process a lot easier. 

Buying your first property is a huge milestone and you should enjoy every minute of it. Use the tips above to cover all your bases and be sure to avoid these common first-time home buying mistakes

Ready to buy your first property? Start your search on! Find cheap and affordable houses and flats for sale in the following areas:

Gauteng: Sandton, Randburg, Midrand, Roodepoort, Akasia, Centurion, Alberton, Bedfordview, Edenvale
Western Cape: Atlantic Seaboard, Cape Town, Gordons Bay, George, Knysna, Mossel Bay, Plettenberg Bay
KwaZulu Natal: Umhlanga, Ballito, Amanzimtoti, Pinetown, Westville, Hillcrest, Margate

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