House hunters shopping around
Twenty is the magic number for Queensland's first-time house hunters.
According to the 2012 Mortgage Choice First Homeowner Survey, the average number of properties viewed by first homeowners in Queensland before purchase was 20.
Mortgage Choice spokesperson Belinda Williamson said almost a quarter of respondents across Australia said they looked at between 21 and 50 houses before making a purchase.
About 25 per cent nationally viewed between 11 and 20 properties.
“Buying your first property is one of the biggest financial decisions a person is likely to make in a lifetime,” Ms Williamson said.
“It makes sense to invest the appropriate amount of time into researching and viewing potential properties to make sure you are happy with the final decision.”
Lisa Hunt, from Hunt Realty in Cairns, said current market conditions meant first homebuyers had more time on their hands in their quest for an ideal first home.
“They are a lot more concerned about their choices,” she said.
“Many go out and look for something that is out of their price bracket and might need to come down or maybe they are not finding what they want.”
Ms Hunt said first homebuyers tended to be more fussy.
“People who buy their second or third house know what they want to buy because they have learned from the mistakes of their first house,” she said.
“People are not in a rush and there is still that uncertainty in the market.
“(Homebuyers) are willing to wait for inspections... They know if they miss (one house), there is another one around the corner.”
Mt Sheridan first-time buyer Rebecca Sperring said finding a dream home was a luck of the draw.
“I spent seven years going in and out of homes as an occupational therapist so I thought it would have taken longer,” she said.
“But by the time I started looking around, I fell in love with the second house.”
Ms Sperring said she was inspecting her first property and ended up finding the house she would eventually purchase around the corner.
“I saw this house and I thought, let’s make this happen,” she said. “There was a heck of a lot of luck involved.”
Another first homeowner, Lauren Guymer, purchased her three-bedroom dream home in Bayview Heights with partner Paul McKew in July. Ms Guymer said it took about four months and five house inspections to find their home.
Little Mulgrave residents, Natalie Hunter and her partner Ryan Moss, are currently in the market to buy their first home and say they are in no rush.
The house hunters have been looking at homes for the past year.
“We are looking to buy between Gordonvale and Edmonton,” Miss Hunter said.
“Everything is pretty cheap at the moment so that’s why we are looking... It’s just finding something we both like and agree on.”
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Lucky find: Rebecca Sperring fell in love with the second house she looked at. Picture: TOM LEE