How to buy in a booming regional market

REAL ESTATE

The Regional Victoria and Mildura property markets continue to be some of the strongest markets within Victoria. Pent-up demand from motivated buyers, is continuing to outstrip local supply. While, it is evidently still a competitive seller’s market, we are seeing some signs of price growth cooling, however many buyers continue to miss out each week on securing their dream home.  We have put together the following guide to help buyers secure their dream property in a booming regional market. 

  1. Before looking for a property, get pre-approval. 

Before you even start looking at properties, ensure you have pre-approval from your lender. Having your finance ready is essential in this competitive seller’s market. Once you are pre-approved, you will know what you can comfortably afford, and you can be flexible with the offer you present to vendors.

It is currently a competitive sellers’ market – and as a buyer, you must be ready to submit your offer. Even submitting an offer that is “subject to finance” can negatively impact you – with those in the position to submit an “unconditional offer”, currently having an upper hand. 

To avoid disappointment and frustration, it’s strongly advisable to have your pre-approval confirmed before you begin seriously searching and inspecting properties. 

Prices in Regional Victoria are moving quickly and it’s important to set realistic expectations and always be prepared. Remember most pre-approvals only last 90 days. Circumstances can sometimes change, so make sure you stay in contact with your lender or mortgage broker. Even once you have pre-approval, be prepared to share updated bank statements and documentation when you go for final approval – for example, updated credit card statements and payslips.

  1. Establish relationships with local real estate agents.

In booming regional locations, not many properties are sold off-market. Usually, once a property listing is live, committed buyers will begin immediately inquiring – requesting the Section 32 or even inspection times. 

It’s strongly recommended to meet agents in person and explain what you are looking for. Attend open home inspections, and highlight your specific requirements to the agent. 

When the agent has a listing that may be suitable, they may invite you to privately inspect the property – early on in the campaign, such as when advertising photos are being taken. This may give you the advantage of inspecting early and giving you time to decide whether you can submit an attractive offer. 

Having early access to pre-market viewings is extremely beneficial, but you’ll need a strong relationship with the agent and be on their radar. 

  1. Don’t neglect your due diligence.

While it is essential to move swiftly in a competitive market, you cannot neglect the due-diligence process – and it’s even more critical in a regional market. 

For example, it’s very important to understand if the property is in a bushfire-prone location. Get some initial quotes on what the insurance cost might be – in some cases the annual premium can be significant, such as $4,000 a year. 

Furthermore, if you’re considering land to build your dream lifestyle property, make sure you establish if there are any caveats on that land that may impact your potential to build. 

According to www.domain.com.au, in a regional market – which can have a limited pool of tenants and future buyers – property selection is extremely critical. You may find, even subtle differences such as which end of the street and which side of the road a property is on, can heavily influence its demand, and therefore value.

Remember, that being close to the central part of town will always be attractive – and try stick within a kilometre or two of local amenities like schools, cafes, shops and transportation. 

Speak with local agents and property managers to identify what ‘typical’ property types are in strong demand, and if there are any areas or streets to avoid. Buying a property with mass-market appeal is likely to minimise vacancies and maximise your overall return. 

  1. Be patient and wait for the right property.

Regional markets can be inherently small, and available ‘good quality’ supply may be limited, which increases competition for well-presented stock. During this emotional time, it can be very tempting to rush into a purchase; especially when you may believe the area’s prices are rising and supply is low.  

While it can be disappointing to be unsuccessful, you don’t want the fear-of-missing-out (FOMO) to lead you into financial stress, and potentially paying above-market for a property you may not necessarily truly love. 

Remember, each property purchase on your journey is a long-term investment. The right property will come along. Furthermore, buying in a regional market will obviously involve a major home-move, and you want the property to enhance your overall lifestyle and wellbeing, and not impact it. 

To learn more about what you need to know before buying a home, see our article 5 tips you need to know before buying a home.

Always seek advice from a trusted professional.

Purchasing and investing in real estate is exciting and when done well, can significantly transform your life.  Your local One Agency specialist, lives and breathes real estate in your area and has insights into exactly what is happening in your community.  

Now is a great time to get started on your property journey, or continue climbing the property ladder, as interest rates are at an all-time low. Our agency is also seeing high-quality family-oriented supply begin to come onto the market, and this is set to continue as we progress through summer.

To learn more about the benefits of real estate investing and what prices may do long-term, please contact us at One Agency.  With One Agency being one of Mildura’s most trusted real estate agencies, we are well placed to provide you with our view of the current market based on our local experience. We’ll thoroughly guide you through the process and help you take advantage of this opportune time in the property market.

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