Do your homework: how to research a property before you purchase

Written by in Buying on September 8, 2017

Every property seeker today seems like a property expert (any Melburnian you meet is a property expert but that’s another story). Just as the market has evolved over the years, so has consumer knowledge of these markets. The reason for this is increased access to market and property data, through such avenues as a Price Estimates tool, and the empowerment this gives regular property seekers.

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Why is it important to research properties before making a bid?

There are two main reasons why it is a great idea to do as much research as you can into your market before making a purchase on a property. The first is that buying a property is one of the largest financial commitments you may ever make, so if you tend to compare televisions when shopping, it makes sense that once your investment is scaled up thousands of times over, you will want to have the right data at your side.

Secondly, the property market is a competitive market. Without knowing what you are getting into there is more chance of you wasting time with properties that don’t match your goals or your budget.

Even if you don’t want to do much research, it is inevitable that during the process of finding properties, going to open for inspections, and attending auctions, you will find yourself soon becoming a bit of a property expert whether you like it or not.

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What does ‘research’ include?

There are two different forms of research that are vital tools in the process of finding the perfect next home or investment property.

1. Market research – gaining the knowledge to make intelligent and informed decisions has never been more important and more achievable. Using new digital innovations, such as’s Property 360 Price Estimate tool, you now have unparalleled access to detailed market information as it relates to the properties that interest you.

A Price Estimate tool provides you with updated demographic data for a property’s neighbourhood and suburb, such as occupancy rates, age and lifestyle demographics, suburb trends for both houses and units, and more.

With this information, you can greatly improve your own understanding of not just city-wide or national markets but the housing market as it relates to any given neighbourhood.

Alongside this, a Price Estimate tool helps vendors and property seekers alike by providing a price estimate for any address in Australia, with the option to customise this estimate based on a home’s attributes as well as three comparable properties.

With detailed data about your neighbourhood, previous and current sales figures, rental histories, and demographic insights, you can more accurately pinpoint what properties suit your lifestyle, goals and budget.

Improving this first stage of research, market research, you then have the tools and knowledge to move onto the next stage of research without wasting your time or your money.

2. Building research – this is the more traditional side of researching property, and a form of research that you need to factor into your costs. As such, having a clear idea of the market is key to saving money.

When you find a home or investment opportunity that speaks to you, it is necessary to use the services of a qualified building inspector or surveyor who will provide you with a written report covering any faults in the property and any renovations that have been made to it as well as recommending what it would take to fix these.

The cost of using a building inspector for a property you are interested in is well justified in providing you the peace of mind that your property is structurally sound.