Moving To A New House? Be Prepared For Extra Costs

Whether you are planning to move from your existing dwelling into your own home or another rental, your head is probably already filled with dozens of things you need to do. There are all kinds of details to remember before the moving van arrives and forgetting any of them could mean that your move becomes a logistical disaster.

Establish a House Moving Budget

Chief among them is the cost, and unless this is known beforehand, and money set aside to cover it, your first experience in your new home could be the shock of an unexpected bill. To those of us who don’t manage money well, budgeting is boring, but when moving house, it is just as essential as advising everyone of your change of address.

As a real estate agency specialising in both sales and rentals, we have seen quite a few clients financially overstretched because they didn’t cost everything in advance. At Bunbury Real Estate, we are expert at helping people find properties that suit their life styles but we can only advise that moving can be expensive, and suggest they stick to a budget.

Sell Things you Don’t Want

The most effective way to get the most out of your moving dollar is to be aware of the hidden costs of moving and plan some strategies to avoid them. For example, don’t take things with you that you don’t want. Donate them, sell them online or have a garage sale. You will get some extra cash in hand, and you won’t be paying for the extra space to transport them, only to throw them out when unpacking.

Don’t Waste Money

Don’t buy anything new now but wait until you have moved in and lived in the property for a while. A bargain piece of furniture now may be a waste of money if it doesn’t fit when you move into your new abode. Also, if you have subscriptions such as pay TV, cancel them now and put the savings towards your moving expenses.

Do Your Own Cleaning

Most rental agreements require that you get carpets professionally cleaned before you leave. However, doing all the other cleaning yourself, including mowing the lawn and tidying the garden, will save you hundreds of dollars. Use this to offset the cost of professional movers, who are experts at packing and protecting your important pieces.

Move Outside of Peak Hour

Another suggestion is to plan the move outside of peak hour. If your removalists or truck rental company charge by the hour, sitting idly in a traffic gridlock is a waste of money. Also, make sure all your possessions are insured while in transit, especially if you are moving yourself. Traffic accidents are a fact of life, so make sure you are covered.

Don’t Let Your Unoccupied Property Drain Your Finances

If you have one or more investment properties, it is vital that you keep the vacancy rates as low as possible, given the locations and local market conditions. An unoccupied property is a drain on the financial resources of the owner, is more likely to be vandalised and becomes an insurance issue after a specified period.

Getting a Property Leased Quickly Needs Several Approaches

Finding quality tenants quickly in any kind of market is not something that can be achieved with only one strategy. It takes a concerted effort using several different approaches that, when combined, gives the owner the best possible chance of securing a long-term lease.

When we manage a property on behalf of a client, this is the approach we take. At Bunbury Real Estate we use current rental data to keep in touch with the local market and the latest marketing techniques to advertise our properties. We also keep our property owners up to date so their rental price expectations match the market conditions.

Use Accurate Data and Set Firm Targets

This means rental appraisals must be accurate. Data that is months old is not a true reflection of what is happening now. If, for example, the market is slowing down, we need to be advising our clients on current data, or they will be expecting a rental price that was achievable six months ago, but not now.

Getting a property occupied quickly also means setting targets and acting on them. The number of enquiries within the first couple of days the property is advertised is a reliable indicator of how much work will be required to get it leased. If there is little or no interest and we know the property is overpriced, we request a rent reduction from the owner. This usually brings in enough tenants for us to reference check and recommend.

Advertise Any Changes

This brings us to the next important change. There is little advantage in reducing the rent if we don’t advertise it. People who are watching the property but have not enquired may respond to this drop, so featuring it in our major advertising is critical.

Long Gaps Between Leases is a Cost

Our most important strategy is the relationship we have with the property owner. This includes giving good advice and finding reputable tenants. When an owner is reluctant to reduce the rental price, we remind them that every day the property is vacant is a cost to them. An extra $10 or $20 a week will be eaten up in costs if the property is not quickly leased.

If you are self-managing your investment property and losing money between leases, give us a call. We will use our knowledge to get your property leased quickly for the best price in any kind of market.

What Would Make You Sell Your House?

For previous generations, buying a home was a once-in-a-lifetime event, and selling it a reluctant response to something that left no other choice. As the workforce became more mobile, and social changes redefined the family unit, the notion of a “forever” home was challenged. Home owners are now willing to sell their properties for a range of reasons as diverse as they are practical.

Moving up to Something Bigger

Up-sizing and downsizing are the opposite sides of the same coin, that is, the desire to have just the right amount of space for current needs. The typical home owner who sells a property to move to a bigger one will usually have a growing family who need their own bedrooms, or be caring for elderly parents or perhaps running an expanding home-based business.

Free up Cash by Downsizing

Downsizing is usually a lifestyle decision by older people whose families have grown up and left the family home. They no longer need the extra space or the work involved in keeping a large property clean and well-maintained. Selling up and buying something smaller also frees up much needed cash, which is useful in later life.

We have helped clients to both up-size and downsize, but these are not the only reasons people decide to sell their homes. Real estate is very much a people-centred industry, and here at Bunbury Real Estate experience has shown us that almost every decision to sell is driven by some change in personal circumstances.

Changes in Work Circumstances Trigger Sales

Work, for example, is a major part of our lives and very important to our financial and personal wellbeing. Many sales are a result of changes in work circumstances. We have worked with clients who needed to sell because they were moving interstate to a new job, which is always exciting. Sadly, we have also helped clients who needed to sell because they had lost their job and could not manage the mortgage repayments.

Relationships and Family

A change in relationship status that triggers a property settlement is another personal circumstance that will cause homeowners to sell. A separation or divorce is a common reason for contacting our agency to list a property. So, too, is the need to be closer to family during such a difficult time.

Not the Old Neighbourhood?

Sometimes the change is just one of personal preference. This typically happens when a neighbourhood that has been home for many years, changes to a completely different demographic. For some long-term residents, it just doesn’t feel like home anymore, and they sell their property and move to somewhere that better suits them.

Whatever the reasons, we are always available to help people find their perfect place, whether it is an apartment, a duplex, a free-standing house or semi-rural property.

Finding Your Piece Of Paradise

We all have our own ideas about what constitutes the perfect living environment and what suits one person may be the last place in which someone else might want to live. With such a wide variety of real estate options available it would only be the most difficult buyer who could not find a place to call their own. Whether it be beachside, riverside, acreage, town or city living, high in the hills, in suburbia or off the beaten track, there is a property to suit everyone.

Variety is the Spice of Real Estate

It is this variety and the opportunity to meet and assist people from all walks of life that makes real estate such an exciting industry to work in. At Bunbury Real Estate our people are experienced in identifying the most desirable areas in which to live. While there will always be that unique person who wants something totally different from everyone else, there are a few attributes that most buyers want when they go house hunting.

The Modern Dream Now Peace and Quiet?

This is for a place to retreat from the responsibilities of work, to recharge the batteries and to seek out privacy from being switched on 24/7. Doing this in a peaceful environment while still having all the modern facilities is the dream.
We think there is no better place to fulfil this dream than Bunbury, but to find out for yourself, we have some suggestions for finding the right place for you. First, make a list of the things that are important to you in your daily life. For instance, do you want to live close to water, to have views from your home, to have facilities close by or are you prepared to forego convenience for privacy and a natural environment?

Ask Yourself the Hard Questions

Are you prepared to drive a reasonable distance to get to work? Do you want neighbours close at hand, or would like to put some space between your property and the one next door? Do you want to spend your leisure time at a frenetic pace, or are you ready to chill out and wind down?

Don’t Settle for Less

No one can answer these questions for you. You must make your own decisions about what you want. If you allow yourself to be pressurise into buying a property in an area that does not meet your most important criteria, you will not be happy there, and the very things you were seeking will escape you.
There is something for everyone in Bunbury and if you want to spend time with us to find your ideal property, we will find a suburb or location that ticks your most important boxes.

Balance The Risk And Returns Of Property Investment

It has been repeated time after time.

  • Investing in the property market is a safe bet.
  • Investing in property is guaranteed returns.
  • You’re investing in something you can see, touch and smell.
  • Investing in property equals big tax incentives.

There are more but you get the idea.

As responsible Real Estate Agents and Property Managers Bunbury Real Estate feels it prudent to assist our customers in making an informed decision.

The Risk and Pitfalls

The risk on an investment usually refers to the amount of money being injected into the deal. The more cash you have of your own the less the risk. Therefore, it makes sense that it follows that the more you borrow the greater the risk.

The pitfalls of the investment can be many and varied depending on each individual case. The more common pitfalls are:

  1. Large entry costs by way of stamp duty, pest and building reports, conveyancing and transfer costs, and legal costs including searches.
  2. Ongoing repairs and maintenance
  3. Council rates
  4. Water rates
  5. Insurance
  6. Body corporate fees
  7. Land tax
  8. Management Fees

The Returns

Alright now! We’ve done the main course, let’s get down to the cake!

In the same way you would calculate the many facets of risk, you must also study the level of investment returns. It is only when these two things are in balance in YOUR world, should it be right to move forward with ANY investment.

So what aspects should you consider when calculating the real and forecast rewards we speak of?

The three main aspects to consider are:

  • Rental Income
  • Tax Benefits
  • Property Growth

For some investors, taking a hit on income for high growth could be a winner. For others, it may be having that long-term investment that actually contributes to your income.

As the owner of an investment property you are able to claim against the expenses on all the items listed above in Risk and Pitfalls against any income received, over the term of ownership.

The other great advantage is being able to depreciate all the items held within the property such as hot water systems, floor coverings, air conditioners and many more.

On a Final Note

Whilst we may be a little biased in believing property is the best kind of investment, we also believe and recommend diversifying your portfolio as another method to assist in balancing your risk and return.

Home Loan Deposit Budgeting 101

You hear it all the time. Owning your own home is becoming something for the haves not the have nots. Real Estate is being priced out of the common person’s hands. You know this is just not true! Bunbury Real Estate are dedicated to helping each and every one of you achieve your real estate goals.

Yes, the value of real estate has increased. Yes, there was a big bubble that seems to have settled. Yes, property values are realigning themselves. They do this all the time. This is why real estate is such a great place to put your money. It has proved to be better than any bank time after time. In the meantime, our wages have also increased.

The bottom line to any large purchase such as owning your own home is you need to create a budget and stick to it. THIS HAS NOT CHANGED for decades now. The question is – do you possess the intestinal fortitude to stick to your budget and keep your eyes on the prize at the end? If you are then check out our tips to help you get to your goal even faster.

What Do the Banks Want to See?

Obviously, the banks will want to see that you are able to cover the debt you intend to incur when buying your dream home. One of the best ways to do this is to show a record of steady savings for your deposit.

It is important to keep working on squirreling away a little bit of cash each week to build up that initial deposit and show you are a good risk. Take the time to sit down and create a workable budget that includes all your essential spending.

From here you are able to determine if you need to temporarily cut out any non-essential spending such as entertainment, holidays, and treats. By treats we mean getting that weekly manicure, buying gourmet food or those shoes you saw last week.

If you can show your lending institution you are serious then they will take you seriously. By this we mean that people who wish to enter the real estate market and have done their homework generally place themselves in a much better position than those who don’t.

The banks are keen to give loans, but they are not keen to just give their money away. It is wise to show that you have a proven history of being able to create savings as well as pay off debt.

Saving Money on Your Mortgage

If you are a home buyer, then you are fully aware of the pain that paying mortgage brings. Most of the money you are paying goes directly to interest, but there are actions you can take to make mortgage payment more bearable. Your goal should be to pay off the loan faster and to make the payments easier to meet.

Your mortgage is most likely your biggest expenses every month. At first, you might have thought that the payments are not that difficult to make on a regular basis, but there comes a time when it becomes burdensome. The trick that can help you involves money saving ideas in relation to your mortgage. Here are some tips to consider.

Cut Unnecessary Expenses

This is a basic personal financial management principle. If you do not seem to understand where all your money is going, then it must be because you are spending for items that are rather unnecessary. One of the common culprits is expensive coffee. Ordering coffee at least once a day leads to spending thousands of dollars every year. If you can cut down this habit, you can potentially save a considerable amount of money, which you can then allocate for paying mortgage.

You can also cut down on personal treats such as dining out and excessive shopping. Consider that home-cooked meals are not only more beneficial to your health but also to your financial situation.

Pay Extra

Paying extra every month will help you pay down your mortgage faster. With extra payments, the amount will be applied to the principal instead of the interest. As the principal decreases, the interest payments also decrease.

Pay Every Fortnight

If paying extra is difficult for you, consider paying every fortnight instead, coinciding the payments with a fortnight salary. With this term of payment, you get to pay more often, therefore increasing the annual amount you are paying. With 26 fortnights in a year, you are actually making 13 monthly payments in a year.

Find a Better Deal

You should always review your loan to see if there are ways you can find better loan terms. For instance, it may be possible to get a loan modification to make the payments more affordable and suitable for your financial situation. It may also be wiser to get refinancing so as to get a lower interest rate.

If you need help with figuring out numbers related to mortgage, then you can contact us at Bunbury Real Estate. We have dedicated agents at our local Bunbury Real Estate office who will be happy to assist you with all your questions and issues surrounding the property purchase.