Buying home tips

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Buying a home is one of the most important things most important thing most people will ever make. For sure, homeownership has great benefits. But it also comes with certain responsibilities.

Be confident, if you are ready for homeownership. Take a look at your current situation and determine if:

  • you have a suitable credit history that shows you are ready for homeownership
  • you have continuing and reliable source of income prior to applying for the loan
  • you have money for down payment and closing costs

Once you've narrowed down the area where you'd like to live, spend as much time as you can driving around the neighborhoods looking for homes for sale. You'll not only see what's being offered, you'll get to know the neighborhood even better.

Moving home can be quite stressful. There are a number of things to think about when moving and it can often be a lot of hard work. Planning is essential and it is recommended that you start your preparation eight weeks in advance. Use the following checklist to help you keep track of your move:

Eight weeks

  • Start a file for records or receipts that may be needed later for your taxes.
  • Get estimates for moving companies and/or truck rental. Check for availability and ask about insurance. Don't forget your car if it requires shipment.
  • Obtain a reference from your current landlord.
  • Investigate schools and childcare facilities of your new locality.

Seven weeks

  • Give your new address to your health professionals. Get relevant referrals.
  • Investigate moving needs for any pets and arrange a check-up for them.

Six weeks

  • Decide what to take, what to store and what to give to charity.
  • Cancel, transfer, or sell club memberships.
  • Investigate car insurance premiums for your new area.
  • Investigate storage options if required, and collect boxes for packing.

Five weeks

  • Give notice to your current landlord or agent.
  • Organise a garage sale. Place your ad in The Age or The Sydney Morning Herald. Or sell your items at Contact charities for pick-up of donated items.

Four weeks

  • Party time! Organise a BBQ to use up perishables.
  • Arrange transfer of school records.
  • Decide how pets will be moved.
  • Notify businesses, clubs, organisations and friends. Remember e-mail contacts.
  • Start packing! Label boxes every box. Plan to carry irreplaceable items.

Three weeks

  • Organise new homes for your plants if need be.
  • Pre-book utility connections if required.
  • Give a forwarding address to old employer, lawyer, accountant, etc.
  • Service your car, especially if you are driving to your new home.
  • Get hotel reservations if travelling a long way or if your new home is not ready.

Two weeks

  • If you're moving into or out of a high rise, reserve an elevator with the body corporate.
  • Get a babysitter for young children on moving day so you can focus on the move.
  • Close or transfer bank accounts, and get travellers cheques if needed. Empty any safety deposit boxes. Ensure you have cash for the moving day.
  • Arrange to forward your mail to your new address. Cancel Post Office Box accounts.
  • Notify insurance and credit card companies of your move.

One week

  • Arrange for house cleaning after you move.
  • Make charity donations as planned previously.
  • Back up computer files before dissembling and packing your system.
  • Contact utilities to cancel or transfer accounts after your moving date, and confirm utilities will be on at your new place before you arrive.
  • De-frost & clean your refrigerator and freezer; clean your stove.
  • Confirm your travel plans (flights, hotels, rental cars, etc). Arrange rental truck if needed.

Moving day

  • If moving yourself, pick up rental truck. Load heavy items first
  • If employing removalist, confirm your new address with the moving company.
  • Do a final check of cupboards, drawers, etc.
  • Turn off lights, appliances and hot water system. Lock doors and windows. Leave keys with your old landlord if applicable.


  • Update car rego and driver's licence.
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