The first question all prospective home owners should ask themselves is "can I afford to buy?" While this may seem rather obvious, many first time buyers rush in to the decision and often end up wishing they had spent more time calculating their finances. If you simply cannot afford to buy at a given time, wait. Wait, keep saving and cut back on unnecessary expenses until prices naturally drop.
Today most houses will require a deposit of at least 10%, for many this will be significantly higher. However, it's worth remembering the additional costs of home buying as well. Besides raising money for the deposit, there's also survey costs and mortgage arrangement fees, insurance costs as well as the cost of fitting out the house itself.
For young couples, the obvious advantage is their combined wages. However, any singles out there looking to buy property may find it twice as difficult to save the funds required. The best solution here is to team up with a friend or relative to pool funds together, apply for a joint mortgage and perhaps work out some sort of legal contract.
Remember, don't pay too much! In today's market, developers are desperate to sell. While some may overprice properties to begin, it's your job to make an offer and get a good deal.
Despite money worries, it's important not to let this be the sole deciding factor for you and your home. The right location is, and should be key for choosing a home. Distance to family, friends and of course, work, is an influential factor for the majority of buyers. Some people choose to move away from the areas they know to find cheaper locations for buying property. However, don't simply settle for a location you don't like or haven't got to know just because the prices are cheaper. It will only affect your happiness in the long term.