Darren Palmer: The most important things to look for when buying a home

Darren Palmer: The most important things to look for when buying a home

There really are two ways to buy a property. The first is by assessment, the second by heart. The best approach, though, tends to be a blend of the two.

When searching for a new home there are several boxes you’ll need to tick to help you narrow the field.


Head and heart make for a sound home-buying decision.Head and heart make for a sound home-buying decision. Photo: Felix Forest

What area or suburb do you want to live in and can you afford what you want where you’d like.


What are the things that you’ll enjoy in the area, and that others will enjoy should you decide to sell in the future. Parks, shops, entertainment precincts, all of these add to the value of the home both now when you intend to buy and when the time comes to sell.

Buying a home requires a balanced checklist.Buying a home requires a balanced checklist. Photo: Felix Forest


Public transport, shopping centres, schools and institutions like banks and post offices all add to your ease of experience in a suburb or enclave.

Market growth

Is your desired area growing, plateauing or receding in value? Knowing this will help you make informed decisions with the best knowledge you have available. Past performance is not the only indicator of future growth but it is worth looking at what is driving price movement and whether those factors are likely to maintain, increase or reduce in the future.


Repairs, upkeep, special levies (if you purchase strata or company title properties), fire upgrades, restumping, rising damp, termite rectification – the list can go on and on so be sure to have your desired property thoroughly checked. That includes doing a strata search and looking into the bank accounts of apartment buildings to see what assets they have and what proposed works there will be coming up.

Then there comes the heart.


Falling in love with a home can be as simple as seeing something that others cannot. Look for high ceilings, natural light, good construction, desirable location in the street or block, outlooks and that certain something that appeals to you. Chances are if you love it there is a market that will love it, if after improving the property you want to sell.

Opportunity to improve

Look at the floorplan, the footprint on the land and the opportunities you have before you to improve on either or both. Look for ways that you can add your own flair to the property to bring it up to the level of other, premium properties in the area. Look at what premium versions of your property are like, what their finish and amenity is and whether you can realistically update your desired home to that level, even if eventually.

Buying with your heart, after doing your due diligence will allow you to have certainty that when you sign the cheque and the deed is done you will have found your perfect home.

Originally published as: https://www.domain.com.au/news/darren-palmer-what-to-look-for-in-a-new-home-purchase-20170512-gvsmr2/

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