Before you venture out to inspect potential properties to purchase it is you know the importance of understanding the market. These days real estate institutes, property portals and data sites provide an array of information that enable you to be more informed about current market conditions, suburb trends and other key information which may impact your decision of where to buy and at what price.
Sources of Information/Research
1. Data Sites
Over recent years a number of sites have been established to enable consumers to access current sales results and historical sales data. This information will assist you to gain a good grasp of current market trends and historical growth patterns.
Some of them include;
PropertyDATA.com.au contains data collected by the real estate institutes across Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia. The site will allow you to access the same comprehensive, accurate and up to date property sales information relied upon by estate agents, valuers and Australia’s major banks. The site provides free as well as paid property reports, median prices, capital growth figures and suburb profile information.
Residex provides consumers with the ability to purchase information on all areas of the real estate market, such as analysis of market movements, price estimation, historical growth data and more.
- Real Estate Institutes
There are real estate institutes across each state of Australia that act as the industry body in that specific state. The institutes amongst other things publish market commentary as well as median prices and other market data.
2. Sold archives on Property Portals
Aside from dedicated data sites, property portals also have sold archives to enable you to browse recent sales for your suburb of interest.
3. Newspapers – Auction Results & Commentary
Whilst newspaper readership and property advertising has declined in recent years, many of the major newspapers provide detailed market analysis and commentary from a range of industry leaders. Major newspapers will also publish weekly auction results on Sundays and Mondays.
4. News & Blogs
It is also important to read some of the latest news and blogs to get a feel for what factors are impacting the market at present.
Some of the best ones include;
- Australian Real Estate Blog – http://reic.com.au/blogs/default.aspx
- Australian Property Investor – http://www.apimagazine.com.au/
- News.com.au – property section – http://www.news.com.au/money/property
5. Attending Open Inspections
Attending open inspections are a necessary part of the research process. During the early stages of your property search attend opens and take the time to talk to real estate agents as they are the experts on real estate in your local area. For full details on things to consider at an open inspection refer to the Open For Inspections section of this guide.
Making a List
Before you begin looking at potential properties it is also important to make a list of exactly what you are looking for and why.
Some important things to consider when buying:
- What type of property are you looking for? One of the most important decisions you will need to make is the type of property you wish to purchase. There are three main things you will need to consider. These include:
- The type of residence you are looking for i.e. house, apartment or townhouse. The type of residence you choose will impact your level of privacy, shared areas and maintenance fees.
- The type of material you require your home to be constructed from i.e. weatherboard, solid brick or concrete to name a few. The type of material a home is built from is important as it will impact the level of upkeep you will need to make on the property.
- Would you prefer a newly built or established home? There are pros and cons to both. For more information visit our page Investing in house and land packages VS pre-existing properties.
- Will the property accommodate your changing needs over time? When buying a house you need to consider if the property will accommodate your needs not only now but in the coming years. If you are planning to start a family or wish to start your own business do you need additional rooms?
- What public facilities are important to you? It is important to consider what amenities you need close by. Do you need to be near public transport to get to and from work? If you are into health and fitness is there a local gym? Or if you have children, living close to a school may be important.
By considering some of these crucial questions early on you will be able to spend your time on seeing properties which are in line with what you are looking for.
NEXT: Buying Methods
7. Understanding the Market
14. Moving Checklist