Buying a home for the first time can seem a real challenge, what with so many things to do and to think about.

Luckily, there are many ways to make the process less daunting. Here are some handy tips to make your path to home ownership a little bit smoother.

Do your homework

Get out and see as many houses as you can. This will not only help you get to know the market, but also help you develop a good sense of what your idea of a good property looks like and what you might be prepared to pay for it.

Don't just look at the houses either, take a look at surrounding properties and the neighbourhood – can you see yourself living there?

Your own circumstances will determine what you are looking for. If you have a small family, it might be handy to find a place close to parks and bicycle paths, for example.

Know the costs of home finance

Knowing exactly how much you can borrow is a great start – it will mean you can narrow your property search to just those houses you know you can afford.

A mortgage broker can tell you not only your borrowing capacity, but also the other costs which come with your first home loan.

These will include the home loan application fee, mortgage insurance if required, inspection costs and any stamp duty fees.

Plan for the future

Don't go for a house and a home loan that is only perfect for you right now, think about the future too.

If you plan on having kids in a few years, having enough space to accommodate them will be a big factor in your house hunt.

Similarly, planning your mortgage so that it is manageable if your circumstances were to change in some way may make your life that much easier down the line.

You can contact a Smartline Mortgage Adviser on 13 14 97 for home loan advice. Or complete our call request form and we’ll call you!

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DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article is correct at the time of publishing and is subject to change. It is intended to be of a general nature only. It has been prepared without taking into account any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, Smartline recommends that you consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances. Smartline recommends that you seek independent legal, financial, and taxation advice before acting on any information in this article.