Shopping for property can be an overwhelming task. Add kids and moving to a new suburb or city into the mix and stress can multiply tenfold.
As a property developer that operates at the forefront of creating family communities, I often witness the concerns of mum and dad buyers.
- Will the property be big enough for when the kids are older?
- The local area is good now, but will it still be great in 5 to 10 years’ time?
- Can we afford a large property right now?
- The neighbours are okay and the house next door/across the road looks fine - but what if they decide to renovate?
These are all understandable questions.
To help simplify the process, I’ve listed my top five tips for family buyers.
1. Create a checklist of family needs & interests
Having a family can often mean juggling priorities on a daily basis. Make two lists. One that outlines the essential requirements for the property and the area that you’re planning to buy in, and the other to outline the family’s wants for their lifestyle.
If the property you’re considering meets a need or want, tick a box on the appropriate list. It may not be possible to have all boxes ticked but this should help you assess if you at least have a good balance.
2. Spend some family time in the local area
If you’ve found a suburb and a property that you’re keen on buying, spend some family time in the local area. If your kids are younger, this may mean a tour of the local playgrounds. If you have teens, it may be looking into what sports clubs or facilities are close by. Either way take time to experience the new area in both a day and night scenario.
3. Know where you want to be in the near future
I deal with two types of family buyers. Those who seek a home where their family can be comfortable for now with the prospect of upgrading in a few years, and those who have the equity to secure their ‘home for life’ right now.
Sharing your plans with your sales agent will allow them to present the best options to you without wasting your time. If you are planning to upgrade in a few years they may also be able to provide you with your options structurally and financially.
4. Design and build your dream home
Purchase a house and land package that allows you to design the property to meet your exact wants and needs. Larger developments will have various locations and property styles within one community that suit the needs of any buyer.
5. Talk to your potential neighbours
Talk to families who currently live where you plan to buy. Source their opinion of the local area and ask as many questions as you can.
Ideally speak to someone in the same life stage as you. While everyone is different, this should paint a good picture of what you can expect from life in that community.