Buying your first home

Buying your first home can be daunting. You have to know all the steps involved.

Buying your first home can be daunting. You have to know all the steps involved.

Before you start searching, ensure your finances are in order.

Doing this will give you an idea of how much you can afford. You should not only consider the price tag but also expenses that come with owning a house - such as rates and insurance costs.

To qualify for a loan, the bank usually requires a deposit of between 10 and 20percent of the property price. The repayments should be lower than 30percent of your monthly gross income.

When applying for a loan, all your debts and other expenses are considered . When making an application for a loan, include all necessary documents to avoid delays.

Your application will usually include proof of income such as payslips, employment records and bank statements for any hire purchase agreements. You should also provide proof of your savings history and details of your credit cards.

Remember to take into account any additional costs such as attorneys' fees, stamp duty, insurance, any government duties, building costs, maintenance and renovations.

Once the loan has been approved, you can now go house hunting. Think about what your long-term needs are and inform your estate agent.

Once you've found the house of your dreams, you can put in an "offer to purchase".

When you and the seller have agreed on a price, you pay a deposit.

The next thing to do is to consult your lawyer or conveyancer. Usually the attorney will be provided with a copy of the sales contract by the seller's lawyer or agent.

Your lawyer should check the contract and ensure it contains all required documentation, and terms and conditions, which should then be explained to you.