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FAQ's - Buying

Frequently Asked Questions - Buying a Property

How much of a deposit will I need?

Most lenders will require you to have a 20% deposit for your home loan. For example, if you wish to purchase a home worth $400,000, you would require an $80,000 deposit. However, most lenders have loan products to borrow up to 90% of the property value.

If you don’t have a 20% deposit and need to borrow more than the 80% threshold you should speak to a mortgage adviser who can talk you through your options.


How much can I borrow?

You can use a borrowing capacity calculator to get an idea of how much you can borrow. Mortgage Express have some useful tools you can use.


Where should I start to research potential properties?

A great place to start is online at Realestate.co.nz. There are lots of other property comparison sites on the web which will give you an indication of the average sale price of houses, land and units in an area.

Also take a look at how a neighbourhood has fared over the past five to 10 years. Have prices steadily increased, stabilised or been in decline? These figures can help you to determine if the property will be a good investment over the long-term.

You can engage your Harcourts sales consultant to help you find the perfect property for you. Our consultants know the area they work in very well, and can also give you advice on what the neighbourhood is like, if there are new infrastructure projects planned, and how prices have changed over the last few years.


What should I look for when inspecting a property?

Take advantage of an open home and use the time to perform a thorough property inspection. Later on, you’ll want to engage the services of a professional to inspect the building’s structure and for pests, but it’s a good idea to use your initial tour of the home to perform your own inspection. For a complete list of what to inspect in an open home, see our article on What to really look for in an open home.


How do I make a formal offer?

The best way to make a formal offer and avoid any confusion is to make the offer in writing. A sales consultant will most often provide you with a contract to start the process which will also highlight any conditions of sale. The consultant will then present this offer to the sellers.


What conditions should I include in my offer?

Adding a condition means that a price can be negotiated, but the agreement to purchase the house will not be finalised until you have satisfied all your conditions. You can put anything as a condition, and you do not have to go through with the purchase of the house if any of your conditions are not met satisfactorily.

Good conditions to put in initial offers are any or all of:

  • Building inspection
  • Registered property valuation
  • Finance
  • Title check
  • LIM

You may also have a house to sell as a condition of sale - this needs to be carefully worded in the conditions. This sort of condition usually includes a 'cash out' or 'escape' clause. These clauses allow the vendor to keep marketing the house until you go unconditional. If they get another offer before this happens the vendor gives you a specified amount of time (as per the clause) to go unconditional (usually around 3 working days) or your offer will be considered cancelled.

Another condition that can be used is 'due diligence'. This clause covers all the standard conditions and more, and can be used when you have unusual or sensitive conditions to cover off.


What other property purchase costs will I incur?

Possible expenses you may incur are:

  • Bank fees
  • Solicitor’s charges may include legal searches (please consult your solicitor)
  • Home protection insurance
  • Miscellaneous costs (Building inspection, rates, removalists, etc.)


Is it the right time to invest in a property?

One of the most frequently asked questions at the moment comes from buyers; should we buy now or wait for a while?

Of course we don’t have a crystal ball but we do have a wealth of experience in the this real estate market through all sorts of market conditions including a severe share market crash and various levels of economic recessions.

What must be remembered is that one of the catalysts for buyer hesitancy is the regular commentary expressed in the media by a seemingly endless parade of “property experts”. These statements are aimed at the property market in general and often the basis of these opinions comes from activities in the major centres, in particular the Auckland market.

Not enough care, in our opinion, is taken to consider what is happening in the provincial areas.

History shows us clearly that many smaller cities and towns are insulated to a degree from conditions in the main centres.

Our current advice to buyers who are unsure of when to buy, is to get all the information they possibly can regarding the HIbiscus Coast real estate market and how that market reacts in adverse economic conditions.

Given that the Whangaparaoa area is traditionally a very stable market and there is a sensational selection of properties on the market right now, it could be that now is the ideal time to be buying your first or next property in our fabulous area.

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