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Don’t Forget the Extra Costs of Buying a Home!

When taking out a mortgage, don’t forget the extra costs of buying a home – consider the associated fees and expenses that you will incur. Here are some of the extra costs that you’ll need to consider when you get a home loan:

Home Loan Application Fees

Most lenders charge a home loan application fee. This can range from loan to loan, and covers:

  • Loan contracts
  • Property title checks
  • Credit checks
  • Attending a settlement
Mortgage Fees and Costs
  • Mortgage establishment fees – Lenders generally charge a mortgage establishment fee – a fee for setting up a mortgage.
  • Property valuation – A third party – chosen by the lender – is appointed to determine the value of your land and improvements.
  • Mortgage registration – Your mortgage deeds need to be registered with the Government.
  • Mortgage stamp duty – Some State Governments charges stamp duty to register your mortgage.
  • Lenders mortgage insurance – If you don’t have 20% of the purchase price or the value of the property, the lender will require you to pay  for a lenders mortgage insurance policy that covers their risk in the event you default on your repayments.
Property Fees and Costs
  • Building, Pest and Electrical Inspection fees – It’s wise to have your new property inspected for any structural or electrical problems and for pests (e.g. termites).
  • Stamp Duty – Governments charge Stamp Duty to transfer the ownership of a property.
  • Registration of Transfer Fee – The new owner of the property must be registered at the Land Titles Office.
  • Legal fees – You generally need to pay a Solicitor of Settlement Agent to handle the transfer of ownership of the property on your behalf
  • Home & contents insurance – Most homeowners insure their home and contents against a range of threats: burglary, fire, storm, etc. Lenders will insist that your property is insured while you have a mortgage.
  • Life and income protection insurance – Borrowers should consider protecting their incomes and themselves while they have a mortgage.
  • Utility costs – Connecting electricity, gas and telephone can attract a fee.
  • Council Rates – Your local council charges rates to cover garbage collection and a host of other services.
  • Water Rates – The water corporation charges rates for the supply and upkeep of water to your property.
  • Body corporate fees – If you buy an apartment or Strata Titled property, body corporate fees will be charged. Some buildings can have very high feed – particularly if the building is in need of a major work (e.g. concrete cancer, security upgrade, new hot water system, etc) or if there are lifts, pools and other communal facilities. This should be a key question to ask before agreeing to buy an apartment.
  • Maintenance costs – Don’t forget to make provision for regular maintenance on your home – even if you decide not to undertake significant renovation.

There is a lot to consider when you are ready to buy a new home – especially if this is the first time you have bought a home in Australia. Our advice is to talk through these when you are reviewing the options for your home loan – in some cases it may help your loan application if you have a plan to cover the ongoing costs of ownership.

Make sure that you don’t forget these extra costs when buying a new home – talk to us at Madison Wells Pty Ltd t/a Astute St Leonards to help with your planning! We are here to help you through the process.