A guide to guarantor loans

When the prospect of buying your first home is on the horizon, few feelings are more deflating than realising you might need a guarantor…

But, this option could be your key to entering the property market sooner.

Your guarantor is someone who will co-sign your loan and become legally responsible for meeting mortgage payments if you can’t. You’re more likely to need one if you have less-than-great credit, a low deposit, or you’re in self-employment. While finding a guarantor means you’ll grab your dream home, it could place the willing participant at risk if you don’t meet your mortgage payments. By understanding more about guarantor home loans, you can decide if it’s right for you.

Australia’s rising property prices are making guarantors necessary

In certain parts of Australia, including Brisbane and Canberra, property prices are rising. With higher property prices comes the need for a bigger deposit. In the absence of a hefty savings account, first-time buyers may struggle to meet their bank’s deposit demands. BIS economics has found that banks are also exercising tighter lending criteria. As a result, fewer young buyers can snag the properties they want.

In such scenarios, a guarantor might assure a bank that their mortgage is safe. For example, when someone produces a lower deposit, a guarantor loan may increase their likelihood of acceptance. Or, if their credit isn’t excellent, having a guarantor with the right assets could result in a mortgage closing successfully.

What is a guarantor and who can be one?

Let’s say you’ve seen the perfect property and you either want to buy it with a minimum deposit or no deposit at all. The bank still needs a deposit, so you find yourself at a crossroads. You can either go one way and look elsewhere or go the other way and get a guarantor loan.

In short, a guarantor loan is a loan where someone else assumes full or partial responsibility for repaying it. The loan is for placing a deposit on your home. You can pay the loan off using alternative means, such as enhancing the property’s value or paying down the mortgage faster.

Usually, your guarantor will have a strong relationship with you. Such as a parent, sibling, or partner. Their credit should be good, ideally, they’ll be in employment, and they’ll have an asset that you obtain the loan against.

The risks and benefits of guarantor loans

The most obvious benefit is that you get the property you want. But, if you can’t realistically meet the mortgage payments even with someone funding your deposit, you place strains on your guarantor.

Another benefit is that you can access a popular property quickly and vary the approach you take to reduce the loan. For example, if you’ve found the perfect house and you have an upcoming promotion, you can increase the mortgage payments at a later date and decrease the loan.

When seeking such loans, consider the relationship you have with the individual. Will they remain gracious about being your financial bolster? Or are they likely to remind you of it in every conversation?

Ultimately, a guarantor loan can bring you closer to your property ownership dreams. At Achieve Homes, we make buying a cost-friendly property in Canberra easier. Contact our team about your property needs today.

Best suburbs for millennials to buy a first home

When you’re looking to buy your first home in the Canberra area, pouring through the suburbs can feel confusing.

While each has its attributes, how do you know whether it’ll be right for you in the long term? Fortunately, we have prepared a guide on which suburbs are best for your first home.

What makes a Canberra suburb good for a millennial?

Aside from affordability, the Financial Times reports that millennials want to live in locations where they can spend time with friends. As such, you might be looking for a home that’s close to cafes, bars, and parks.

If you don’t own a car, commuting features start to come into play. How reliable is public transport in your area? And, will it get you to work quickly?

With a greater emphasis on well-being than many other generations, you may also crave an abundance of local amenities that facilitate your lifestyle, such as green outdoor spaces, gyms, and meditation centres. On the topic of mindfulness, if you’re thinking toward the future, you might want to look at suburbs that complement future family life.

Landscape photograph of Lawson area in Canberra
Image credit: Suburban Land Agency | suburbanland.act.gov.au/lawson/about

Which Canberra suburbs are good for millennials buying their first home?

  • Googong
    With affordable housing and plenty of green open spaces, Googong is ideal if you’re after a relaxing lifestyle with essential amenities nearby, whilst still being within reasonable distance to Canberra’s CBD.
  • Greenway
    The local population has a median age of 35, plenty of edgy coffee shops and restaurants, and some affordable property developments, illustrating that it’s already a popular choice amongst millennials.
  • Taylor
    As an area in development, Taylor is set to feature two dedicated primary schools, a top-of-the-range shopping centre and other excellent community amenities, in a natural setting.
  • Lawson
    With low traffic and bordered by a lake, Lawson is perfect if you want urban living in a new community, just moments from some of Canberra’s most prominent facilities including University of Canberra, AIS and Canberra Stadium.
  • Watson
    Based in north Canberra, Watson is an established suburb that combines affordable house prices with a litany of desirable schools, close proximity to Dickson’s dining precinct and moments from Canberra’s CBD.

Doing your research before buying your home

Before purchasing your first property, consider what makes it perfect for you in terms of location. Try to look towards the future while doing this. For example, if a property’s main selling point is a quick journey to work but you’re likely to change office locations, could you look for something more suitable? Or, if minimalist living is quirky now, will it remain so if you have a family?

Should you need any extra advice on the right suburb for your first home, talk to us. At Achieve Homes, we have plenty of experience in helping millennials throughout Canberra find the perfect property for them.

Simple Hacks to Keep Your Home Warm This Winter

We all know that Canberra winters can be testing to say the least. With negative temperatures, frosty mornings and snow blowing cold winds down from the surrounding mountains, it takes more than an extra jumper, thermal socks and a hot water bottle to stop us shivering.

It’s commonly thought that the easiest way to beat the winter chill is to turn up the central heating or blast a space heater. While this might bring some relief from the cold, it will also bring a hefty electricity bill. So, instead of overusing these expensive, energy consuming appliances, we recommend giving some of these simple tips a go.

Let the sun in during the day 

Once the sun in shining, it’s important to capture as much of this free, natural heat as possible. Even on some of the coldest winter days, the sun is still a good source of warmth. Before you leave your home for the day, simply open-up the curtains, and let the sun shine in.

Close your curtains at night

When the sun begins to set, it’s important to close the curtains to avoid heat escaping through the windows. If you’re in a particularly cold home, you can also put up temporary curtains (or even sheets, rugs, etc.) over doors and windows while you’re sleeping to further ensure that the heat stays inside.

Use timers on your central heating

The Centre for Sustainable Energy advises that programming your heater to turn on a little earlier, at a lower temperature (such as 30 minutes before you get up in the morning), is cheaper and more effective than turning it on just as you need it at a higher temperature. However, be careful not to make the mistake of leaving your heating on low all day – because then you’re just paying for heat when you don’t need it. 

Close internal doors

If you spend a lot of time in certain rooms, you can close other internal doors to ensure that the heat stays in the rooms where it’s needed. If you leave the doors open, the heat is likely to go upwards and outwards. While it may not seem like much, any blockage that keeps air from escaping a little less quickly will help keep you warmer.

Move furniture away from vents

A simple way to keep your home warmer in winter is to double check that furniture has not be unknowingly placed in front of heating vents. Ensuring that vents are not blocked means the flow of heat is not disrupted and every room gets the maximum potential heat.

Canberra’s most affordable suburbs

As Australia’s third most expensive capital city to buy a house, it’s important to keep in mind which suburbs are the most affordable when searching for your new home in Canberra.

The capital city is becoming more urbanised, and has a stronger economy with a high employment rate. In addition, the city’s affordability compared to Sydney and Melbourne makes Canberra a strong competitor in the Australian housing market. All of these factors have resulted in the higher median house prices.

During autumn this year, the median house price reached $733,786, a significant increase from the $705,059 a few months ago. It’s also expected increase to $770,000 by 2020, according to Domain Group. If these numbers sound alarming to you, take a look at the median prices for these suburbs.

The Cheapest Places to Live in North Canberra

North Canberra hosts the majority of the most affordable houses, which is why many first homebuyers are choosing to invest in this side of town. Here are the median prices of five noteworthy suburbs:

Belconnen: $423,500

Belconnen plays host to a diverse population of students, families and professionals and surrounds the bottom three quarters of Lake Ginninderra. Host to parks, a shopping district, a number of excellent restaurants, and also The Basement for those of you who love seeing live music on the regular. There is plenty to do right at the doorstep of the homes of Belconnen residents. 

Charnwood: $455,000

Charnwood sits north west of the hustle and bustle of Bruce and Belconnen but is fast becoming a sought-after location for a first home among the population of young professionals looking to set down roots. Having gone through a transformation through the last few years, we are confident in our view that this is one of Canberra’s most underrated and affordable suburbs.

Macgregor: $463,500

Macgregor is one of the quieter suburbs in the northern parts of Canberra. But the locals will tell you that that is a good thing. Surrounded by parkland and featuring a golf course, Macgregor residents are only a short drive away from major retailers and supermarkets.

Holt: $473,500

Holt is a balance of built up and quiet. With restaurants, schools, churches and places to do your shopping in the eastern section, and a golf course taking up a large section of the west, there is a bit of both worlds in the suburb named after Australia’s late Prime Minister.

Ngunnawal: $475,000

Named in tribute to the Ngunnawal people, and you will see plenty of references around the area to the people who inhabited this part of the world thousands of years prior to European settlement. This area is great and highly affordable for young families, with plenty of day care options and facilities. 

These suburbs are all generally close to the city: about 15 minutes by car, which is great for those commuting to work in that area. These suburbs are close to shopping malls including the Canberra Centre and Westfield Belconnen, which are the hub of Canberra’s best restaurants, shops and nightlife. It’s also great for those attending the Australian National University and the University of Canberra, because it’s no more than a 10-15 minute drive.

Other suburbs to consider include: Higgins (540,000) and Jacka ($460,500), a little further afield.

The Cheapest Housing in South Canberra

Buyers who want to be closer to the snow, or generally have a preference for living in the south side of Canberra will find it harder to find affordable housing compared to north side. That’s not to say that the median house prices in these suburbs are significantly lower than the state’s overall median house prices. Consider these top five suburbs you could be living in:

Banks: $480,000,

At $480,000, the median house price in Banks is one of the most affordable in this section of Canberra, and this southernmost suburb is still only a 25-minute drive from the CBD. For those looking for a home in the city with quick access to Namadgi National Park and surrounds, this is a great place for young families to raise their children.

Richardson: $501,000

Richardson is another southern suburb that has seen a great deal of growth in recent years. The relatively inexpensive median house price has attracted a population of young families that has seen the area come to life. Fun fact: each of the streets in Richardson is named after a writer, with a particular emphasis on female writers. Richardson itself being the end of the nom de plume Henry Handel Richardson, the name under which Ethel Florence Lindesay Richardson.

Isabella Plains: $507,500

A beautiful suburb tucked in just next to Richardson is Isabella Plains. Around 17km south-west of the CBD, this picturesque suburb has everything you could need, without feeling crowded. The locals might not all be over the moon about the parking situation you might find in the post-school rush, but we wouldn’t let that stop us when looking at this highly affordable and beautiful part of Canberra.

Chisholm $515,000

Chisholm shares a border with the neighbouring Gilmore, and the parkland that runs along that border is a popular place for those looking to get some exercise outdoors or walk their dogs. The suburb itself is full of sporting facilities, parklands and boasts excellent views of the Brindabella Mountains. 

Theodore: $520,500

Just a touch further south is Theodore, a quieter suburb 19km from the CBD and perfect for those looking for a bit of space. There is not a great deal of shopping options to choose from in Theodore itself, but the surrounding areas have plenty to offer only a short drive from home.

Residents in south Canberra can take advantage of the close proximity to nature parks and reserves, including Wanniassa Nature Reserve and Big Monks Mountain. Moreover, these suburbs are suitable for couples raising a young family. In 2013, south Canberra was recorded to have the highest quality of life. This was base on factors including: levels of safety and security, the quality of the environment, young people in full-time work or education, air quality, job availability and Internet access.

Other suburbs to consider include: Gilmore ($525,000) and Kambah ($540,000).

 Affordable Housing in Canberra’s Surrounds

If you have a tighter budget and don’t mind the commute with more peace and quiet, these suburbs could be ideal for you to call home.

Yass: $386,500

Yass is a growing community situated north of Canberra and the Australian Capital Territory. For those comfortable with a slightly longer commute, the 45-minute drive to the Canberra CBD is a trade well worth it for new and growing families. 

Queanbeyan: $498,000

While not technically part of Canberra, or even part of the Australian Capital Territory, you would be hard pressed to find anyone in Canberra that wouldn’t say that Queanbeyan wasn’t ‘practically a part of Canberra’. Nevertheless, Queanbeyan is a city unto itself, and has all the things you would expect to find in a regional hub. While there are some odd disconnects in public services and transport that you might have to negotiate if you’re looking to work in Canberra, Queanbeyan is a brilliant choice for those looking to find an affordable home for themselves just a short distance from Canberra.

Karabar: $485,000

Karabar neighbours Queanbeyan and an excellent opportunity to stay in close to the city, while not having to struggle to find space when you want. With ready access to all the conveniences of Queanbeyan and only a short drive to Canberra itself, this suburb is full of opportunities to grow and live.

Karabar sits next to Queanbeyan and is a great

Please note: prices are subject to fluctuation.

Watch out for Watson

It’s a stone’s throw from some of Canberra’s seemingly wealthy suburbs including O’Connor, Reid and Turner, though Watson’s draw card has long been its affordability.

Just six kilometres from the city centre, a commute soon to be smooth sailing with the introduction of the light rail, Watson could be your foothold into the sought-after district.

With median house prices below the Canberra average, and new developments planned to stretch the suburb’s residencies towards the NSW border it’s an area that won’t fly under the radar for long.

As the Watson appeal becomes apparent, it’s no doubt more seven-figure sales are on the way, yet as it stands this ‘burb has so far remained relatively cheaper than its surrounding counterparts.

So, who’s looking? First-home buyers and some investors, but it’s mostly young couples, looking to be closer to the CBD, enjoying tree-lined properties along parks that aren’t too expensive.

If the buyers are looking for hustle and bustle of city living, then Watson may not be for you. Its appeal lays heavily on the fact that it retains its suburban feel while reaping all the benefits of proximity to the CBD.

Image via Makin Trax

A resurgence of families can’t be ignored in the area either. Positioned on the foothills of Mount Majura encompassing nature and greenery as well as its location to Majura Primary School, Rosary Primary School Australian Catholic University and nearby Dickson College are undoubtedly luring them in.

Image via Canberra Dog Walks 

Head towards Knox Street for a spruced up modern café/ restaurant called Knox – Made in Watson. This joint is everything it means to be a local as the owner is a born and bred Watson boy!

 

5 reasons people have already bought at Ginninderra Estate

Ginninderra Estate has some exclusive features to offer those looking for a change of scenery.

Set your sights on a lifestyle that boasts lush green spaces, fitness trails and ample space to relax and unwind, less than a 15-minute drive away from the vivacity of Canberra’s CBD

1. Green space galore

Due to the vast neighbouring green space, you can rest assured that your surrounding area will never be developed.

Just beyond Ginninderra Estate’s immediate surroundings, you’ll also find an abundance of natural space, ready to be discovered. Why not take a self-guided walk through Kama Nature Reserve, or perhaps explore a local historical landmark like The Pinnacle, at The Pinnacle Nature Reserve?

(Image via In The Taratory)

2. It’s an apartment free estate

An entirely apartment-free estate set on a gentle slope, residents of Ginninderra Estate will forever enjoy marvellous views of the Brindabella Mountain Range and the picturesque local landscape as no storey complex will be built to disrupt your view.

3. Lifestyle and leisure

The adjoining Belconnen Golf Course is just one of the many perks of living in this impressive estate. Fitness enthusiasts will also enjoy a fitness trail featuring numerous exercise stations, a dog run to take furry family members for a jog and a large green public open space – the perfect spot for some relaxing yoga.

(Image via AllHomes)

4. Shopping at your fingertips

With Kippax and Westfield Belconnen shopping centres a short drive away, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to retail destinations.

Be inspired by the variety of grocers at the local Kippax Fair, and cook up a storm in your new home. Westfield Belconnen is also just a short distance away and is one of Canberra’s largest centres. Featuring around 270 specialty stores plus the added bonus of free parking for up to 2 hours, there’s something to suit the whole family’s needs there. 

5. Wining and dining

Whether you consider yourself a master chef in the making or you prefer to dine out with friends, whilst living in Ginninderra Estate, the finest food selection of the region will be right at your fingertips.

Image via Ricardo’s

The north side is home to a number of delectable eateries and bars, including Olive at Hawker, Ricardo’s Jamieson and Ha Ha Bar & Dining. Alternatively, opt for a night out in the city, as you’ll be just a short drive away from Braddon, New Acton and the CBD’s vibrant establishments.

With Belconnen Fresh Food Markets only moments away, foodies will also relish in the locally produced and delicious gourmet offering of its 30 independent stores.

With all the conveniences the north side has to offer, plus the perks of city-life just a stone’s throw away, Ginninderra Estate really is your key to living the best of both worlds in the nation’s capital.

5 big things we achieved this year

As we come to the end of 2017, the Achieve team can proudly say this is a year we won’t forget.

There are many great things we could mention in our wrap up, but we’ve pulled out the five highlights to share with you.

Record number of homes completed

Next week will see a record number of families celebrate Christmas in new homes that were built by the Achieve team. We are extremely proud of this achievement. While on the path to realising this result, we never lost sight of our commitment to quality and customer satisfaction. We introduced a number of customer promises and guarantees to ensure that our mission and values were upheld with every brick laid and email answered.

5 promises, just for our customers

We also introduced the Achieve ‘Peace Of Mind’ Guarantees, and are proud to be the first company to offer the Canberra market such substantial guarantees.  to quality workmanship and transparency when they choose to build with us.

HIA Winners

We were finalists in the HIA NSW/ACT award for Townhouse/Villa Development of the Year, and we took home the trophy with our Lawson development. It was an honour to stand among the team who had worked so hard and put their all into each and every one of our projects. To walk away with the award the first year we were finalists shows that we strive to deliver, and be, the best.

We were also nominated for a second year in a row for Display Home of the Year with our Googong development.

Our New Colour Selections Studio

We opened a bigger Colour Selections Studio which now holds a sample of every type of finish we offer. From front doors, bricks, paint colours and faucets, we have brought everything to the one place so our clients can mix and match to get the perfect look for their new home. Check out our new studio here: www.achievehomes.com.au/gallery/colourselectionsstudio

Launch of Achieve Property Group

Our ability to service Canberra and the surrounds is growing.  We’ve welcomed some new additions to the business that will help us to take our excellence in delivery and service to other areas of the property market. To help bring these soon-to-be-announced new ventures together we launched the Achieve Property Group.

Achieve Property Group allows us to offer our clients the personal touch of a specialist business and the strength of a large company. Under this umbrella, we are excited to see what the future holds.

We would like to thank all of our clients, friends and family for their support during this monumental year. We could not do it without you, and look forward to having you be a part of an even bigger 2018.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a safe and happy New Year!

The Achieve Homes Team

 

Get The Best Sales Price For Your Home

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If you’re reading this, chances are you’re looking to build a new home. For some of you, that might even mean having to prepare your current home for sale – a huge task to say the least. So, we spoke to Own It Finance to find out how you can get the best possible price for your property. Here’s what they had to say:

Presenting your home in the best possible manner can have a big influence on the valuation process when selling your home. The same goes for presenting your house to a prospective buyer. If your home looks like it hasn’t been cared for properly, then chances are, you’re not going to get a very good sales price. However, if your home looks like it’s ready for a photoshoot, then you’re likely to get a great price at sale! In fact, there are 3 main price points for any property, which are outlined below:

Heart Price:

  • Your home is picture perfect and ready for the cover of a magazine
  • Your home has everything that the buyers and valuers are looking for
  • Similar competing properties lack the presentation that yours has

Average Price:

  • Your house looks average from the street, and does not stand out from the rest
  • Your gardens are mostly tidy but clearly unloved
  • The interior is untidy and appears ‘lived in’

Fire Sale Price:

  • The gardens are overgrown and show no signs of maintenance
  • There is mess throughout the house and the bathrooms and kitchens have not been cleaned thoroughly
  • The house is dark, dusty and does not smell inviting

With this in mind, we’ve compiled a simple checklist to help you prepare your house for open homes and valuations, to hopefully help you get the highest possible valuation and sales price:

  • Ensure all gardens, exteriors, and outdoor entertaining areas are maintained and presentable. It’s amazing what a freshly mown lawn, some weeding and a few trimmed bushes can do to the look of your home.
  • The front door is a visitors’ first point of contact with your home, so ensure it looks as presentable as possible. Remove any lingering shoes, sweep the floor and don’t forget to refresh your welcome mat.
  • Maximise all natural light. Natural light is known to make people feel happier and will also open up your home. If you have time, clean windows and light fittings, and leave lights on in dark areas of your home.
  • If it’s a very hot day, be sure to turn your air conditioner on, or open doors and windows so that the house feels cool and airy. Alternatively, if it’s a cold day, be sure to turn the heater on or get the fireplace raring so that the house feels warm and cosy.
  • Tidy up! There’s nothing more repelling than a home that’s messy and cluttered. Store all your clutter in cupboard and boxes, ensuring it is out of site. Clear all clutter from the bathroom, put bottles and creams in drawers and only have matching towels and fresh hand soap on display. Keep your kitchen benches as clean as possible with only fresh fruit and maybe a kettle out. It is also crucial that you remove any dirty tea towels or floor mats.
  • Ensure each room is as presentable as possible. Some new bed-linen in the bedrooms and cushions or a throw rug on the couch can help to modernise and freshen up any room.
  • When a valuer enters your home, you want them to feel as welcome as possible. It’s always good to offer them something to drink and eat. You don’t want any “hangry” valuers determining the value of your home.
  • Do your research! Find out the sales prices of similar properties to yours in your area and present the results to valuers and prospective buyers.

Whilst this list doesn’t guarantee a high price for your property, it will certainly help to improve how valuers or prospective buyers perceive the value of your home. As you can see, you don’t need to spend a lot of money to increase your house’s price. The most basic improvements usually have the highest return.

Good luck!

Tips For Buying Off-The-Plan

WM_70_AH-Feb_17

When buying a new home there are a tonne of options to consider. One option that should be at the forefront of your decision making is buying off-the-plan.

Off-the-plan refers to purchasing a property before it is constructed. Most of the time this means you will be buying a property while it is just a hole in the ground, and while it may seem crazy to buy something that has not been built yet, there are many benefits to purchasing an off-the-plan property:

The Benefits

  • One of the biggest benefits of buying off-the-plan is having the ability to customise the finishes and fittings in the home to suit your personal needs.
  • Since stamp duty is calculated based on the value of the land and the building, you will essentially only have to pay based on the value of the land, because there is no building yet!
  • In terms of an investment property, the depreciation tax savings are greater for an off-the-plan property, as the newer the building is, the greater the savings are.
  • You have the ability to lock in the price that you will pay, which is financially beneficial as there is a good chance the property will increase significantly in value by the time of completion.
  • The extra time you have while you wait for your new house to be built will allow you ample time to sell your existing home.
  • If you are a first home buyer, you will be able to benefit from the First Home Owners Grant, as well as stamp duty exemptions.
  • Newly built properties in Australia come with a 7 year builder’s guarantee, which means any faults must be repaired by the builder.

The Risks

  • There is always a risk that you will not get what you have already paid for. That is why it is important to have a comprehensive contract detailing all features, fixtures, fittings and time frames to ensure you have a leg to stand on when expectations are not met.
  • Since there is no way to see your apartment before purchasing it, there is a chance that you simply might not like it. Once completed it may look different to your expectations and it will be too late to change anything.
  • If your circumstances change during the build and you are no longer able to buy, it is important to act quickly and ensure you find another buyer to purchase from you at settlement.
  • A risk of having a locked in price is the uncertainty of the property market. Your property may suddenly lose value but you will still be paying the agreed price for it.

Things To Do

  • Make sure that it is definitely the property you want. This includes the size, suburb, orientation, and whether it is on a level you want to be on.
  • Visit the property site regularly and check if there are any other constructions occurring that may obstruct your view.
  • Carefully inspect the display home, including fixtures, fittings and finishes.
  • Research the market conditions and get advice from professionals on the right time to buy.
  • Research the developer. Do not be afraid to ask detailed questions and inspect other projects completed by them in the past. You may even want to talk with a past client to gauge satisfaction.
  • Have a legal professional look over all contracts and translate key points to you in laymen’s terms.
  • Make sure you have a lender that has agreed to financing. A lot of lenders are reluctant to finance off-the-plan properties given their high risk and the chance that the lendee will sell the property for a high price straight away, meaning the lender will lose interest.
  • Check that your deposit is going into a trust account, and do not let that money be released to a personal name to help build the project. This is a sure fire way to lose a lot of money very quickly.

Essentially, when buying off-the-plan, make sure you do the appropriate research to make sure it is the right option for you!

References

Emily Blatchford, Huffington Post, Buying A House Off The Plan: The Things You Need To Know, http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/2016/02/18/buying-off-the-plan-australia_n_9269506.html, Accessed April 7th, 2017.

Oz Property Law, Buying Property Off-the-plan, http://ozpropertylaw.com/buying-property-off-the-plan/?gclid=CKqb2qX4kNMCFUcKKgodLqkF-g , Accessed April 7th, 2017.

Real Estate View, Things to Consider when Buying Off-the-plan, https://advice.realestateview.com.au/buying/things-to-consider-when-buying-off-the-plan/, Accessed April 7th, 2017.

Tim McIntyre, Your Investment Property, The Trick to Buying off the Plan, http://www.yourinvestmentpropertymag.com.au/buying-property/the-trick-to-buying-off-the-plan-148257.aspx, Accessed April 7th, 2017.

New Display Homes Opening This Week!

This Saturday 6 May, we’ll be opening our brand new Googong Display Homes – yes, that’s right, not one, but TWO new display homes for you to peruse. These two new display homes embody everything that Achieve Homes represents — real homes for real people. They also showcase just a fraction of what our talented team can achieve for you.

Situated side by side at 64 & 66 Aprasia Ave, Googong, for your convenience, one home is perfect for a first home buyer or downsizer, with the other being a spacious home for a growing family. Despite these differences, both are packed full of features you can incorporate into your new home.

Here’s a taste of the features you can expect to see:

At number 66 you’ll find our Essence 4 Bed 23.7 home. With 4 bedrooms, and 2 bathrooms it gives you a generous 180m2 of living space as well as 27.14m2 of alfresco living, and 40m2 of garage space. Packed into this home you’ll find our ‘Plus Living Package’ including:

  • Full height tiles
  • Large modern 600 x 600 floor tiles
  • A t-shaped ensuite to complement the master bedroom
  • Reverse cycle heating and cooling
  • Generous 2.7m ceiling heights
  • LED downlights
  • Timber laminate flooring in the spacious living areas
  • Large alfresco area
  • 4 spacious bedrooms
  • Large walk-in robe for the master suite
  • Huge walk-in butler’s pantry with 20mm stone benchtops
  • Work of art stone retaining walls
  • Energy efficient European appliances including a free standing 900mm BOSCH cooktop and oven, and a 900mm BOSCH range hood
  • 40mm stone benchtops with 40mm stone waterfall edges

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Next door at number 64 is our Serenity 4 Bed 26.6. This home has 4 bedrooms, a study, and 2.5 bathrooms, making up the 213m2 of living space. It also includes 29.12m2 of alfresco space and 34m2 of garage. This larger option boasts some amazing features from the ‘Lush Living Package’ such as:

  • Full height tiles
  • Beautifully engineered timber oak flooring
  • Free standing bathtub
  • Reverse cycle heating and cooling
  • Generous 2.7m ceiling heights
  • LED downlights
  • Additional powder room with vanity
  • Stacker doors to alfresco
  • Separate children’s quarter
  • 40mm stone benchtops with 40mm stone waterfall edges
  • Huge walk-in butler’s pantry
  • Spacious living areas
  • Large alfresco area
  • Large walk-in robe
  • Work of art stone retaining walls
  • Energy efficient 900mm BOSCH appliances including a semi-integrated dishwasher
  • Custom made vanities with 20mm stone benchtops
  • Rain effect shower head (from ceiling) in the ensuite

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You can view our new Googong Display Homes at 64 & 66 Aprasia Ave, from 11am – 4pm, every Saturday – Wednesday. Our helpful home consultants will also be on hand to answer any questions and take you through our processes for home designs and house and land packages.

So You’ve Bought a Mr Fluffy Block…

By now you’ve probably heard of Mr Fluffy. But, if on the off chance you haven’t, here’s the deal – a small business decision to improve Canberra’s energy performance in the 1960’s and 70’s lead to over 1000 established homes having residual loose asbestos, known as Mr Fluffy’s. Of course, we all know that exposure to asbestos can lead to significant health problems.

The ACT Government offered to buy back to those affected and the remediated blocks have been sold to the public. This has resulted in a unique opportunity for Canberra homebuyers to purchase these now vacant lands (known as ‘Mr Fluffy’ blocks) in established suburbs.

If you have purchased, or are considering purchasing a Mr Fluffy block, then you might want to get in touch with us! We can take care of all your Mr Fluffy block needs to ensure that your block is not only safe and free of asbestos, but that you can build your dream home on top of it. This includes:

  • Conducting asbestos reports
  • Disconnection and reconnection of services
  • Obtaining required approvals for design, building and demolishing
  • Demolishing existing home (if required)
  • Site set up and preparation
  • Contour surveying
  • Soil classification reporting

At Achieve Homes, we want to make the process of building on a Mr Fluffy block as seamless and easy as possible. Contact our team today!

Image via All Homes

New Home Buyer’s Guide: Questions to ask a builder.

So you’re ready to build a brand new home and need to source a builder who can bring your vision to a reality.

Building a new home is a huge financial and emotional investment, taking the extra time to do a thorough check on any prospective builder, their workmanship, references and credentials is crucial to finding the right builder for your job.

One of the best ways to find a builder is to visit a range of display homes in your favoured suburb. Once you have found a house with the design you like, it’s time to get down to the details and get the answers you need.

  1. What is included and what isn’t? Display homes feature the best fittings, finishes and appliances which may not be included in the standard package.
  2. Can I make changes to the layout? Now is the time to ask about any layout changes you want, some buyers like to make changes but these can prove problematic for the builders.
  3. How long will the build take? The answer to this question will guide you on realistic and achievable timeframes.
  4. Are you licenced? Be sure to only ever work with licenced tradesmen, a quick search on ‘google’ will provide further evidence of a builders licence credentials.
  5. Do you have builder’s insurance? You need to make sure your builder issues you a Certificate of Currency for Home Indemnity Insurance before you pay them anything. This covers you for financial loss should the builder die, become insolvent or do a runner.
  6. Can I visit recent projects or speak with a recent customer? You should be able to look at the builders’ recently completed work. This way you can see for yourself if the builder is doing the type of job you want for your home. Check out the quality of products used and the work completed. If possible, speak to the builders’ clients and get references. This way you can get feedback about customer experience and satisfaction.

Often when potential customers visit a display home they are fitted with all the high end optional extras that are not included in the base package, this can lead to a build that far exceeds your original budget. At Achieve Homes we have a ‘what you see is what you get’ transparency which means what you see in the display homes is included in your package. We pride ourselves on building real homes for real people.

Got a question for us? Call (02) 6280 6778 to speak to one of our team or visit a www.achievehomes.com.au/