Smart Tips for Buying Success

Feb 4, 2019 8:00:00 AM Share this:

Whether you’re looking for your first home or thinking about an investment property or holiday home, the following steps will help you achieve a successful result.

Arrange your finance
Take a good look at how much you will be able to save as a deposit, or how much equity there is in your existing property/ies if you have one. This will give you a good place to start when it comes to deciding what you can afford. A good idea is to then work with a reputable mortgage broker to help you find the best home loan, and interest rate for your circumstances.

Mortgage brokers aren’t aligned with any particular financial institution so they’re really about finding you the best deal. They also don’t eat into your budget, as their commission is paid for by the financial institution you eventually choose. Harcourts can even help you find a mortgage broker in your area through our partners at Mortgage Express.

Select a reputable sales consultant
Looking for a property on your own is fine as a starting point, but when it comes time to dig deeper and really get to know your local area, it pays to work with a knowledgeable local expert and that’s where a great sales consultant comes in.

A sales consultant will be able to support and guide you through the buying process, letting you know the ins and outs associated with purchasing a new home. A local sales consultant should also be an expert on your area, and be able to let you know all about planned infrastructure upgrades, the best local schools, restaurants and where the closest public transport hub is.

But that’s not all, a trained sales consultant can help you with lots of other services that become handy after the buying process, like moving services and utility connection. So its handy to have one guiding you through the process.

Decide on what you want
Your list should include the most important aspects to you right through to the least important. This will also be a valuable guide for your sales consultant. An easy way to break it down is using a ‘must have’ and ‘like to have’ list, so you know what you are willing to compromise on.

Make the most of inspections
Don’t hurry through a property visit. Take your checklist and note down questions while you are there. After viewing a range of properties, you can easily become confused about which house had which feature, so don’t be afraid to take notes!

Manage your offer
Don’t get caught up in the emotion of finding the property you like. Carefully consider issues like fixtures, possession day, price, and consider a builder’s and pest inspection so you know exactly what you are purchasing.

Contact your solicitor
Your solicitor will make sure any unforeseen complications are highlighted through checking official records and information before the deal goes through.

Settlement and moving
Try not to move in on the same day the previous owners are moving out. You may not get access until late afternoon, which can hold up a professional moving company if you are using one and also cause more stress than you need.

Enjoy your property!
It’s been an exciting time looking for the right place, and a well-organised moving day will help everything go smoothly to start you off on the right note.


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Topics: Finance, Real Estate Agents, Buying a home, Harcourts Real Estate

Response to mid-term budget: "It is time for action"

Jan 14, 2019 8:00:00 AM Share this:

During yesterday's mid-term budget speech by newly appointed Finance Minister, Tito Mboweni, key factors putting a lot of strain on our economy were addressed in a more aggressive stance. However, the time for talk is over, and we need to see the results of policies and implementation plans otherwise economic stagnation will continue to remain a major concern. 


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Topics: Richard Gray, Finance, Financial Advice, Harcourts Real Estate

Real Estate Investment: Getting Started

Sep 17, 2018 8:00:00 AM Share this:

It’s no secret that real estate is one of the most successful ways toward wealth creation, as a firm foundation in real estate can insure a successful financial future. However, knowing where to start can be daunting. Here are a few practical tips: 

Own your home
Choosing to own your home will no doubt benefit you in the long run, however it requires patience. Opposite of renting, your monthly payment is contributing to your own personal gain as opposed to making “empty” payments. Additionally, paying a mortgage for several years may allow you to purchase a new home with more favorable financing in the future. The return on investment comes into play when you are able to purchase a second home with better financing, in order to rent out your first home. You then enjoy an additional source of income.

Alternative investment
An easy way to get involved in real estate without actually owning, is through a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT). There is no property management involved, rather, you own multiple properties through a trust. Investors can purchase shares, and as the property value increases, your share values increase as well. This is a great way to move your way into real estate slowly.

Look Outside Your Sphere
Logistically, it’s easier to set your focus on your local area, however a lot of investment opportunity lies outside your immediate reach. Consider outside booming markets, and also take into account that an investment takes time. Remember not to rush the process in seeking viable properties in other regions or states. Some of the best value comes from watching market trends across the country.


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Topics: Property Management, Finance, Advice

Petrol price hikes' potential effect on the property market

Sep 28, 2017 10:08:33 PM Share this:

Today's reports that fuel prices are expected to rise even further in October, largely due to the sharp rise in crude oil price, will definitely have an effect on the property market.

Sources are saying the department of energy published information today that the price of gasoline 93 (ULP & LRP) in Gauteng might rise by 26 cents per liter in the first week of October with the price of diesel expected to rise by 37 cents per liter.

Consumers who are already under financial pressure and in a price pinch due to food cost highs, transport cost increases, stricter banking lending criteria and other macroeconomic factors will feel it even harder.

The rental market might experience it directly as it is usually more prone to react to economic fluctuations. The difference usually comes in where people who rent are able to make changes to their financial situation by scaling down their home choices. Whereas a home owner’s process cannot be changed quickly.

The greater effect on the rental market in the past has been that the demand for rental properties close to business districts, schools and amenities also increases in an attempt to curb excessive transport costs.

The residential sale market is not usually susceptible to short-term changes like fuel price increases and decreases, however there are a percentage of buyers balancing on the decision whether to buy now or not who might be more hesitant to make a financial commitment now.  However, short term cycles usually don’t play a major role.

Statement by
Richard Gray
Harcourts Africa Chief Executive Officer


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Topics: Harcourts South Africa, Finance, Petrol Price, Rental Market, Property Markets