Finally getting your foot onto the property ladder with your first home is as stressful as it is exciting, but arguably even more fun is making the move to a larger home. That’s because upsizers already have the experience, generally know what to expect and have equity in their current home to put towards a bigger property.
But just because you’ve been through this before doesn’t mean you should take things for granted. In fact, upsizing requires even more preparation. To make your life easier, here are six questions you should ask yourself before taking the plunge.
1. What essential details do I need to have at the ready?
The good news is because you’re already a homeowner, the buying process will probably be similar to when you first bought your home. One of the major differences however is that you’ll need to show a combination of both your income and the equity in your current home to be able to meet mortgage repayments. Here’s some of the essential info you’ll need to provide your lender:
- Selling price (or selling range if it’s still on the market) of your current home.
- Selling costs like agent and conveyancing fees.
- How much is left on your existing home loan.
- Your annual income (and your partner’s if you’re purchasing together).
- Any rental income you may have from other properties you own.
- Ongoing financial commitments, e.g. dependants.
- Limits on your credit cards.
- Any other loans you have, e.g. car loan.
- The amount of savings you can contribute to the purchase of your upsized home.
2. How much can I borrow?
This is no doubt front-and-centre in your mind from the moment you start thinking about upsizing – and for good reason. Your borrowing capacity will determine the size of the property you can buy and in which suburbs.
Thankfully there are lots of online mortgage calculators that can give you an idea of how much you can borrow, but these aren’t always accurate and may not take into account important factors of your finances and lifestyle. That’s why it’s recommended you speak directly to your lender or a mortgage broker so they can give you a clear indication of your capacity to upsize.
3. Can I afford the higher costs?
The most obvious added expense will be higher mortgage repayments. In most cases upsizing means you’ll need to take out a bigger loan to cover the costs of a more expensive property. It’s important to think about those higher mortgage payments as being the norm not only now, but well into the future.
There are also more expenses that come with owning a bigger property, such as utility costs to service a larger home, maintenance costs and repairs, as well as higher premiums for your home insurance. Make sure you factor all these things into the equation rather than just the bigger mortgage.
4. Where do I see myself in the long term?
For most Australians, upsizing is a decision for not just a few years but for the long term. It’s an investment in a larger property to raise a family or enjoy a more comfortable lifestyle.
That means location is more important than ever before. While you may have been happy to buy your starter home in an unattractive suburb or an area without good amenities, you’ll want to spend the best years of your life with everything at your fingertips.
Buying in a perfectly positioned location like Waterford at Chisholm gives you exactly that. Whether you buy a house and land package or purchase land for sale to build your dream upsized home, you’ll enjoy the magnificence of the Hunter Valleyattractions only 36kms away, the convenience of nearby Greenhills Shopping Centre, and all the essential amenities close by – public transport, health services, parkland and reserves, schools and much more.
5. How much space do I need?
One of the reasons for upsizing is to accommodate a growing family. While this isn’t always the case, it usually means you’ll need additional rooms, living areas and maybe even a big backyard for the kids and your pets to run around.
Rather than taking a scattergun approach to upsizing, determine how much space you’ll really need beforehand so you can buy the right property type for your future.
6. What happens if there’s a ‘lag’ between buying and selling?
In a perfect world you’d be able to sell your current home, buy an upsized one and organise both settlements for the same day. In reality, this is rarely the case, so you need to be prepared for a number of outcomes.
It’s not recommended that you buy a new home before selling your current one, but if this is the case then you may need a bridging loan – which is an additional expense in itself. If instead you sell your home but can’t find your ideal upsized property immediately, then you’ll need to think about applying for a longer settlement. If that’s not possible then renting, short-term lodging like on Airbnb, living with friends or family, or staying in a hotel or self-furnished apartment (which can really add up over time) may be necessary.
Waterford is an exciting new development set to become one of the most enviable places to live in Chisholm, East Maitland. Enjoy the natural beauty and spacious surrounds with all the convenience of stylish village living.
At AVID, we create places where people love to belong. To find out more about our developments in New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland and how you can invest in the home of your dreams, contact us today.
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