So you’re thinking of getting into the property market but you don’t know where to start. All sorts of questions run through your head like, what if I buy a home that isn’t good or what if I pay too much for a place?

I’ve been there and done that, so let me tell you how I did it. My name is Elizabeth, I’m the owner of a small property management company in Melbourne.

Over the years I’ve witnessed many of my clients make a lot of money out of real estate. The process seemed simple enough, my clients bought the property, I looked after it for them and the properties just grew in value. One of my first clients now owns three properties!

Unfortunately, I was too busy to invest my time into house hunting. I knew it was hard work, getting my finances in order so I can apply for a home loan. Then the dread of house hunting, dealing with real estate agents and attending auctions, it was all overwhelming for me.

Being a mother of two lively boys, I just didn’t know where I was going to fit buying a house into the mix.

In 2017, I made a new year’s resolution that before the year was out I was going to buy a home.

While I was still on holiday, I met with a mortgage broker who helped me get my paperwork in order. It was a lot simpler than I thought! I soon got a loan pre-approval, then I was ready to start looking for a place.

I’ve had a number of clients that have used buyer’s agents to purchase their investments so I decided to meet up with one and see what value they could provide.

After a great first meeting, a buyer’s agent helped me map out a plan and criteria for my first home. With their advice, we planned to purchase a home with a large block of land in the outer suburbs. The idea behind the big land is the future ability to subdivide the property.

Buy splitting the land in two, I will have the ability to add a second house in the backyard, my first investment property. This plan was an affordable way of starting a property portfolio without having to buy a second house.

The House Hunt

In order to buy the property which I needed to fulfil my plan, my budget was tight. To make things harder, the property market was moving up in price quickly, so we had to work fast to secure a home.

The buyer’s agent understood our desperate situation, he literally did all the work for me, all I had to do was inspect a few short-listed properties over the weekend. During the whole process, I didn’t even speak to a real estate agent.

We attended two auctions where we were out bided by the competition. We slightly changed our criteria, choosing to buy a property that needed some basic renovating to increase our chances of finding a home.

My buyer’s agent finally secured a home through a late-night private negation at the end of 2017. The whole process took about 3 months.

The home was a renovators delight, to say the least, but it didn’t bother me, I loved it.

Fast forward to 2019, I’ve repainted the home and put timber floors throughout the place. The kids have settled in great and the place really feels like home.

I’m starting the planning process to add a second dwelling next year.