It’s been all of 2 weeks since I announced that we had taken the plunge and decided to buy our first bricks and mortar here in Australia.
Since then, things have progressed well. Firstly the Real Estate Agents were pretty insistent that we were able to deliver an ‘unconditional loan approval’ letter from the bank.
This is basically a letter that the bank provides you confirming that they are willing to loan you the dosh we need to buy the property.
After the issues we had when trying to sell our house in the UK this makes perfect sense. The implications of not delivering the Mortgage Promise within two weeks of signing the offer papers would have been the return of the house onto the market. The $5000 deposit we paid to the estate agents to secure the property would have also been in jeopardy.
Thankfully we were able to get the loan for the amount we needed. It’s still pretty shocking how much money you can borrow in Australia and although we didn’t overstretch ourselves to much it’s still pretty scary to be back in debt again!
Since leaving the UK and selling up we have spent 8 blissful months completely debt free. No credit cards, loans or anything – it was nice whilst it lasted :)
Still, I’m hopeful that it will be worth it. Our new house is setting us back just over $620,000 (about £260k in UK money). This is quite a bit more than I was expecting to pay for a house in Australia when we started the dream about 4 years ago.
At that time we could have probably picked up the same house for about half the price but as you’ll have read in some of my other entries the times have really changes.
Still, I know the housing boom is starting to slow down a little but even if house prices increase 10% a year for the next 5 years I’d still rather make 50% of $620,000 then 50% of something a little smaller.
Anyway, when all is said and done, it’s a really nice house and even though we only intend to live there for the short term (say 5 Years) it will make a good home for the four of us (once junior number two finally decides to make an appearance!)!
So, we have the mortgage offer and are now struggling through a pile of paperwork which needs signing.
In Australia, conveyancing companies do all this kind stuff for you. You pay them a set fee and away they go like a rabid rabbit digging through mountains of paperwork and land registry information.
Fee wise you’re looking at about $1800 but for this you’ll get all the appropriate checks done on the land (just to make sure your not buying a house sat on the site of an old mine). They also arrange for the transfer of deeds and what not!
I’m not going to go into to much detail about everything involved as I’ll save that for another post once we get the final bills. Just to say that all is going well and we’re still on track to pick up the keys by the end of the month… Yay!