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Tips to Get Into the Housing Market

Melbourne Suburbs

Melbourne SuburbsWITH interest rates rising, and government grants falling, it’s a pretty fair guess property prices won’t run away on you.

So if you’re working full-time, possibly renting and wanting to invest in your future, take note of the tips below, to enjoy the next cycle as a home owner.


Saving a first-home deposit - about 10% of the property's purchase price - is your first goal as a home owner.

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Renovating, and Building Equity in Your Home: Tips For Owner-Builders

house renovation

HOME renovation is one of the soundest investments an owner-builder can make. But with about a quarter of makeovers estimated to be done by owner-builders, you have to do it right.

Renovation-related television shows, magazines and seminars are inspiring would-be renovators and making people realise that investing in real estate does not necessarily mean buying an investment property. Many are unlocking potential in the family home and benefiting from the tax-free windfall.

"Property renovation is one of the soundest investments you can make," says Robert Caulfield, managing director of Archicentre, which provides pre-purchase and renovating advice to home buyers, builders and renovators. "When done properly, it can make you money - and have you living in style."

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Owning Property to Live Off, Rather Than Live in

property investing

AT A RECENT auction in Prahran, a family of four was bidding against a single, first-time home buyer for a one-bedroom apartment close to Prahran train station, the trendy Boutique nightclub on Greville Street and Swinburne University.

The apartment included a modest living room, big enough for a couch, armchair and four-seat dining table, a compact kitchen, a small bedroom able to fit a queen-size bed and two side tables, and an ensuite bathroom. Hardly big enough to accommodate the growing family.

Eventually, the family of four outbid the prospective first-home buyer, in what is becoming an increasingly familiar series of events all around Melbourne.
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Maximising Technology to Sell Your Home

mobile phone

YOU KNOW you are well and truly in a new century when selling your home requires a web designer and domain name administrator.

Many new campaigns – including that of the $18 million Melburnian penthouse, and Clinton Casey’s outgoing $21 million Avon Court mansion – incorporate movies and require the expertise of a production company!

The advent of gadgetry such as portable MP3 players, 3G-capable mobile phones and satellite navigation systems is changing the way real estate is bought, sold and leased in Australia. It's not just about the internet or SMS alerts any more. Today, the traditional print media campaign is backed by podcasts and interactive TV.

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What to Expect When Buying a Home


BUYING a property is a complicated process. There's more to it than scouring websites and newspapers for sale prices, or knowing what your neighbour's house sold for last week.  A large part of it is getting your finances right - and knowing what the legal processes are.

Below are some tips on what to expect when buying:

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Understanding Your Rates Notice: A Guide

Rates Notice

Rates Notice

THERE'S a sad day each year when home owners are delivered what might be their most misunderstood bill - the council rates notice.

Council rates are calculated using your property's valuation and a rate in the dollar your council has budgeted as your contribution. Statewide (Victoria), the average rates bill for all properties -residential, commercial, industrial or farming – was $1135 two years ago.

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Methods of Buying and Selling a Home

auction bid

DECIDING what method of sale to adopt to sell your home has become more difficult.

Here's a list of sale methods and how they work.


Private sales are most popular in middle and outer-ring suburbs, where competition for stock is generally less manic than for inner-city properties. Relatively straightforward, prospective purchasers are aware of a vendor's asking price and make an offer based on that. As well as price, prospective purchasers can negotiate deposit and settlement terms, which often sweetens a deal.
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Tips to Spruce Your Home Before Sale


HAVE you done all you can to maximise the potential of the home you are selling?

Agents say that buyers are so often excited at the prospect of buying a new house that they don't invest the time doing little things for their existing homes, which could reap up to tens of thousands of dollars.

The Sunday Age talks to industry insiders about how to make your property stand out from the rest during the campaign and on sale day.

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Online Videos, Websites and Other New Marketing Techniques

video camera

SO you’ve appointed a marketing agent and your house is presentable. Now, how do you make that translate to a higher sale price?

Several real estate agents have jumped on board a technological initiative: online videos, which they say generates strong interest for featured homes.

The videos enable real estate agents to show off a property in a very professional manner and to deliver an immense amount of information and detail very quickly, Melbourne agent Rocco Montanaro of Morrison Kleeman says.
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Little Things You Can do to Your Home Before Listing it For Sale

renovators delight

VENDORS have many reasons why they should give themselves as much time as possible to prepare their outgoing houses for sale.

As well as allowing enough time to properly repair niggling interior and exterior works, there may be legal or title issues that need to be resolved; a big structural problem might take longer to fix than first anticipated; or plans to subdivide your block, or obtain a development permit to attract the interest of developers, might take time to co-ordinate.

Alternatively, your choice of decor, or garden, could risk turning buyers off and might need to be redesigned.

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