PROPERTY NEWS - If there ever was a time to make purchasing your first home a new year's resolution, 2021 would be the year. With interest rates at historic lows and slowed house price appreciation, there has never been a more appealing time for first-time buyers to enter the market than right now.
According to Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, Adrian Goslett, buyers who enter the market now will be somewhat comparable to those who purchased during the 2008 market crash; the biggest difference being that the market is recovering much quicker than it was back in 2008.
To achieve a new year's resolution of becoming a homeowner in 2021 Goslett recommends that buyers develop a strict financial plan for the new year.
"Becoming a homeowner depends, in part, on one's ability to create a plan with a realistic time frame and having the ability to stick to it. Buyers need to analyse their current income as well as their investments and set up additional savings schemes that will ensure the procurement of the funds needed to obtain their goal within the desired time frame.
"Meeting with a financial advisor can be helpful in this regard," Goslett suggests.
The next step would be to get in touch with BetterBond, South Africa's leading bond originator, to acquire pre-approval for a home loan. A bond originator will determine the amount for which a buyer qualifies. This will prove helpful when setting up a budget for the house-hunting process.
Buyers should also explore the variety of National Housing Subsidy Programmes available to them to help them afford the costs of homeownership.
Once buyers are ready to begin the house-hunting process, Goslett recommends that they reach out to a local real estate professional who can guide them in the right direction in terms of where to look for homes that are within their budget.
"Real estate professionals also know the available stock on the market and can therefore advise on the likelihood of finding a home that meets the buyer's search criteria before the year is out," Goslett explains.
With all the information gained, buyers will then need the determination to stick to the plan.
"Your dream of owning a home can become a reality, provided you take the necessary steps to ensure that you have a concrete plan and the self-discipline to follow through on that plan. I therefore encourage all those who dream of becoming a homeowner to take the first steps and start developing an actionable plan set within attainable time frames to turn their dreams into reality," Goslett concludes.
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