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Half of Aussie homebuyers are failing to do this despite knowing what they’re looking for in a property.

By Liam Worth

Aussie buyers know what they are looking for in a property (think practicality, quality finishes and solar panels) yet half are failing to complete due diligence, a new GlobalX survey has found.

When buying real estate, due diligence is the process of properly evaluating a property before purchasing, a process Aussie buyers are skipping. Most buyers are aware of building and pest inspections and action these but important questions such as “has the creek down the street flooded?” or “does the area have a high crime rate?” are not being asked.

Findings from the survey of Australian conveyancing and legal professionals found that:

  • 90 per cent of homebuyers don’t look into the history or likelihood of sinkholes (despite checks being available)
  • 80 per cent of homebuyers don’t check a neighbourhood’s crime rate
  • 47 per cent don’t find out if the property they are looking to purchase is in a fire zone
  • 37 per cent don’t consult flood maps to see if their potential home is or has been at risk
  • 26 per cent of homebuyers reported that they discovered issues with their home post-purchase

GlobalX CEO Peter Maloney explained: “Thorough due diligence should absolutely include research into things that are likely to impact liveability and resale value, including area development applications, government infrastructure plans like roads and public transport, and flight paths”.

Although aspects of due diligence are being overlooked by buyers, more material, structural features are definitely more front-of-mind when purchasing a property. Listed below are the 8 things Aussie buyers are seeking in a property in 2020.

  1. The ideal layout

The modern buyer is looking for a home with more than one living space, yet a seamless flow.  If you have children, one open-plan living space can often feel crowded and can be quickly outgrown.

  1. Natural light

A home that feels open and allows for plenty of natural light to flow through is a drawcard for buyers.

  1. Quality finishes

Buyers are often happy to make small changes after purchasing (if not doing a complete renovation) but the idea of replacing cheaper finishes can be off-putting. Choosing quality finishes such as tapware, or a well-executed paint job can make all the difference.

  1. Over-renovated? No thanks.

If necessary, making small adjustments to update a home before selling is advised. Over-renovating a property to suit your style – not so much. There’s a fine line between making your home more appealing and taking renovations too far when selling.

  1. Practicality over luxury

Buyers want to be able to look at a home as a blank canvas for their own personalisation. Statement tiles, benchtops and lighting can all be added after purchasing a home. If a home is not practical, structural changes by renovation may be considered.

  1. Swimming pools are in!

Over the past 10 years, swimming pools have become more desirable based on the busy lifestyle of Aussies. A pool allows a family to enjoy summer outdoor living at the convenience of home without having to make an excursion to the beach. This isn’t an advisory to install a pool if you’re thinking of selling. A pool can provide many years of enjoyment for a family. The longer you keep a property, the more likely the cost of a pool can be fully recuperated.

  1. Garages

People want undercover parking. Fair call.

  1. Solar panels

As Australians become more environmentally conscious, owning a house with solar panels is becoming more desirable. Reduced power bills + increased sustainable living = win.

Although you may find the perfect house for you, don’t overlook things that could pose issues in the long-run. Discussing the below 10 topics compiled by GlobalX and the Real Estate Institute of Australia with your conveyancer or legal representative is recommended when in the process of purchasing a property.

  1. Building inspections
  2. Pest inspections
  3. Council development plans
  4. Planning approvals
  5. Road and infrastructure plans
  6. Valuations
  7. Flood maps
  8. Fire zones
  9. Public transport
  10. Nearby schools

Article extrapolated from:

Kirsten, C. (2020). ‘Major risk Australian first-home buyers are taking: doing their due diligence’, realestate.com.au, February 11. Available at: https://www.realestate.com.au/news/major-risk-australian-firsthome-buyers-are-taking-doing-their-due-diligence/

Skelly, K. (2019). ‘8 home features Aussie buyers want right now’, realestate.com.au. September 2. Available at: https://www.realestate.com.au/lifestyle/8-home-features-aussie-buyers-want-right-now/

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