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First National Real Estate Bentleigh Senior Sales Executive, Chris Koutoumas says the first step to home ownership is closer than you think, even in the light of spiraling weekly rents, rising living costs and home prices that have begun gently rising again in parts of the country.
“Tight rental markets are serving to keep pressure on weekly rents, as well as house prices, making it even more difficult for the first home buyer looking to enter the property market,” Chris said.
“But, with the right advice and some careful planning, they could be staking out their own patch of turf sooner than they thought possible.”
According to Chris, the first step for the first home buyer is to get together their deposit, which is not as difficult as people think.
“It’s amazing how simple it can be to cut back on what we call luxury items and the difference this can make to savings,” Chris said.
“Cook more meals at home and take lunch to work, rather than eating out, where meals can cost at least twice as much.  Doing that five days a week, will really get the piggy bank started.
“Cutting back on other socialising activities so that a night out is enjoyed once a fortnight, instead of weekly or more frequently can also save money.
“These are just two small changes, but the impact on savings can be quite dramatic.”
Chris said. 
“With both established homes and greenfield properties in new suburbs on the city fringes becoming out of reach, first home buyers need to start being a bit more strategic in their thinking and look at things in a different light.
“Consider staying at home longer, where things are much more affordable.  The rate of increasing weekly rentals is making renting an unaffordable option for many.  So, living with parents where you can pay rent at much reduced prices can be a solution and parents might even consider saving the rent to help get a deposit together.
“In addition, everyone will have the benefits of shared accommodation, where parents and children can share the living costs.”

But, Chris says, the best thing to do is to seek the services of a financial planner and adviser as they have the expertise and knowledge to assist with your financial needs in the way that best suits the income and lifestyle of the individual.
“Financial planners and advisers are an excellent means of making savings start to work for you.  They can offer advice on how best to turn those hard-earned dollars into interest-earning capital,” Chris said.
First home buyers are an important segment of the Australian property market and it is incumbent upon governments and the industry to ensure there are affordable housing options for all sectors.
Chris Koutoumas, Senior Sales Executive, First National Real Estate Bentleigh, on 0419 547 696