Westpac’s Home Ownership Report reveals Aussies have had a change of heart with what matters most

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Westpac’s Home Ownership Report reveals Aussies have had a change of heart with what matters most

  • 83% of first homebuyers disregarded buying a home in ‘trendy areas’
  • Living in a quiet neighbourhood, proximity to public transport and safety were also essentials that have been dropped
  • First homebuyers are instead searching for homes with modern kitchens or bathrooms

Aussie first homebuyers are ditching trendy locations in favour of more modern designs when it comes to finding their dream home, according to Westpac’s Home Ownership Report.

The report analysed over 1,000 first homebuyers and homeowners and tracked data trends from the last two years,finding that Aussies have reprioristed their property essentials.

During the year, 83% of first homebuyers disregarded buying a home in ‘trendy areas’ or suburbs that were close to work as an ‘essential feature’, compared to 48% in 2016.

Head of Home Ownership for Westpac Group, Andy Wright believes that housing affordability and increasing household costs were to blame for the priority shift, suggesting that first homebuyers have become more flexible.

“These attitudinal shifts among first-home buyers towards home ownership suggest we may see more looking to buy in areas that they hadn’t considered, with many previously thought ‘essential’ features now just ‘nice-to-have’,” he said.

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Living in a quiet neighbourhood, proximity to public transport and safety were also essentials that have been dropped, decreasing by 37%, 21% and 9% respectively

Instead, first homebuyers have decided to look within and are searching for homes with modern kitchens or bathrooms, both increasing by 25% and 10%.

When it came down to current homeowners, it appears renovations are all the rage. The number of renovations has grown by 14% since 2015, with Westpac revealing that 62% of Aussies plan on using their savings to do so.

Mozo’s Property Expert, Steve Jovcevski says that this number will only increase within the next year.

“This is the lowest renovating has been as a percentage of total building in a long time because of other building constructions that have taken place. But the numbers (for renovating) will improve over the next year,” he said.

“The reason why so many people are choosing to renovate is stampy duty. If you want to upsize to a $900,000 home, the stamp duty on that would be $36,000. That money could go towards a new room or kitchen and you won’t have to go through any headaches to move.”  

Mozo recently reported on the renovation rise with many Aussies accessing personal loans to give their much-loved home a makeover.

And if you’re an Aussie looking to give your home a bit of boost through a personal loan, Jovcevski has a few quick tips to kick off your renovations the right way.

“Before you renovate, take care of the basic stuff first. Make sure all the plumbing and electrical stuff works - that’s more important. But don’t ever do it yourself, always get a professional and remember to let your home insurance policy insurer know you are renovating in case you need to upgrade your policy,” he explained.

If you think a personal loan may be your answer to sprucing up your home, our database has pulled a few for you to peruse. You can also check out our personal loan comparison tool for even more options.

The pros and cons of using a personal loan for renovation 

Pros

- You’ll be able to have access to more money than your savings and there is a faster application process

- Personal loans have a shorter timespan, meaning you’ll be debt-free sooner

- You may pay a lower interest rate, as the term of loan is shorter

Cons

- Limitations in what can be renovated

- If the loan is secured, you have to offer up an asset, like your car, as security, if the loan is unsecured, you may have to pay an application fee

- You will have to balance both the personal loan and home loan repayments

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