Introduction – Buying Costs for Residential Property
This brochure is a guide to some of the costs you will need to pay when you buy a home. The costs are approximate only and are subject to change. Home purchase costs vary considerably depending on such things as type, location and value of the property.
Home Loan Application Fee
This is the fee charged by a bank or other lending body when you apply for a loan.
Approximate cost: $Nil – $800
There may be additional costs preparing and registering the mortgage (Settlement Costs). There are separate costs involved if constructing a home.
Your lender usually requires a formal valuation of the property you are buying. This fee may be included in the application fee charged by your lender.
Your lender will require you to take out mortgage insurance if you are borrowing more than a set proportion of the property’s valuation. This insurance protects the lender if you default on the loan and the property is sold for less than the outstanding loan amount. Premiums vary according to the loan amount, property price and the loan-to-value ratio. The mortgage insurance premium is a once-only payment. It’s applicable when you pay less than 20% deposit.
Conveyancing is the process of transferring the property from the seller to the buyer. You can engage a solicitor or conveyancer to do this or you can do it yourself. There are no set fees charged for conveyancing. You should get a written estimate of the likely costs before engaging the solicitor or conveyancer.
Approximate cost: $700 – $2,500
Your solicitor/conveyancer will charge for some of these expenses paid on your behalf during the conveyancing process. For e.g.: Title search, Council rates, Strata fees, Registration fees, Water Rates, Land Rates, etc.
You must pay contract stamp duty on the purchase price of the property (or valuation in certain circumstances). Duty must be paid within three months of the date of exchanging contracts, unless buying ‘off the plan’ or a house and land package.
Building Inspection – Approximate cost: $300–$700
A building inspection checks structural soundness and lists any visible defects and necessary repairs.
Pest Inspection – Approximate cost: $200–$350
A pest inspection checks for any signs of past or present pest infestation.
Strata Inspection – Approximate cost: $200–$350
A strata inspection examines and reports on the written records of the owners’ corporation. It is additional to the certificate that the seller supplies, providing relevant information about strata levies, insurances.
Home Building Insurance
We suggest that you arrange home building insurance before completing the purchase. The cost of building insurance will depend on the age, size, location and type of construction of the property. Two types of insurance cover are available.
Replacement cover: To reinstate your property to its former condition. It means, simply, new for old.
Indemnity cover: To repair or reinstate your property taking into account depreciation on the dwelling.
Approximate cost: $220–$1,000