Buying in a millennial market

Millennial-Home-Buyers

As the millennial generation step on to the property ladder, we see different trends emerging and more caution being taken when buying first homes. Deemed by some as the ‘pickiest home buyers’, Generation Y are turning the tides of real estate.

Where generations before had limited resources when buying property and considered their first purchase a lifelong family home, millennial’s have an overwhelming amount of information at their fingertips and consider their first home a stepping stone or starter property on the way to their big picture goal.

One thing that remains the same, buying a house is the biggest financial decision you will probably make. Ever. Can we help you? Absolutely, keep reading for our top tips for millennial buyers.

 

Define your goals

Figure out what it is you’re looking for and if you’re going it alone or with a partner/friend. Ryan Hardy, luxury real estate agent says, “Given that buying a home is such a big step, it’s important for you to educate and prepare yourself as much as possible in advance. This means clearly determining why you’re buying and what kind of home you’re looking for”. Define your house goals, whether it’s an investment property or your new family home. Facing the property market with a clear idea of what you want will make the process easier and much less daunting.

 

Examine your finances

Look at what you can afford and keep in mind that you may need to spend money on the property to personalise it further down the line. Speak to your bank and discuss the best plan of action and what your budget will stretch to. Remember, interest rates can change as economic conditions fluctuate, will you be able to afford your mortgage payments if they increase? Perhaps buy a property slightly under your budget so you have a safety net.

 

Talk to the professionals

Determining your budget or knowing a properties worth isn’t easy. Talk to the professionals and work together to find your dream home within your budget. There are many mortgage and payment options, a specialist can help you choose the right one for you. A real estate agent can review your property checklist and provide an option you may have overlooked.

 

Look beyond the great views

Know the property inside and out before buying, not preparing for necessary renovations or essential work takes its toll on the budget and you. Find an agent who provides you with detailed inspections and keeps you updated regularly.

 

Talk to one of our agents for more information.

Insulation Regulations For Rentals

NZ-Insulation-Regulations-Harcourts

Landlords are now obligated to provide warmer, drier and safer homes for their tenants. Any new, replacement or top-up insulation installed after 1 July 2016 in a rental home must meet the regulations that will apply to all rental homes from 1 July 2019. A landlord who fails to comply with the regulations is committing an unlawful act and may be liable for a penalty of up to $4,000.

Insulation is one of the most effective ways to save energy in a home since it keeps it warm in the winter and cool in the summer. And a warmer home is a drier, and healthier home. It is estimated that in one year a typical home can save up to $400 on energy bills by installing ceiling insulation. Adding underfloor insulation could save even more!

Recent studies in New Zealand have shown a link between insulation and health. The Wellington School of Medicine and Health Sciences study showed:

  • A significant drop in energy use when the houses were insulated.
  • Once the houses were insulated, they were drier and warmer.
  • People in insulated houses reported their houses were “significantly warmer”.
  • There was a significant improvement in the self-reported health of those living in the insulated houses compared to those whose houses were not insulated.
  • Adults and children in insulated houses reported visiting their GP less.
  • Adults and children in insulated houses reported that they were admitted to hospital less often for respiratory conditions.
  • Adults and children in insulated homes were significantly less likely to report sick days.
  • People living in insulated houses reported less visible mould inside their homes.

Who is exempt?

As New Zealand has many types of houses, the law allows for some exceptions to the insulation requirements, including where it is not ‘reasonably practicable’ to install insulation in certain types of property. These exceptions are not loopholes – they must be legally justifiable.

Due to the design or construction constraints of some property types, it is sometimes either not physically possible to insulate or would require major renovations to do so. Examples of types of properties that would meet exception criteria would be apartments where there is a habitable space above and below the apartment, houses constructed on concrete slabs where it is not feasible to install underfloor insulation, and homes with skillion roofs where there is no ceiling in place to install insulation above.

Other situations in which landlords may be exempted from the insulation requirements are:

  • Where within 12 months of the start of a tenancy, the landlord intends to demolish or substantially rebuild all or part of the property. In this case the landlord must, if requested, provide evidence of having applied for the necessary resource consent and/or building consent for the redevelopment or building work.
  • Where a property is purchased from and immediately rented back to the former owner-occupier – in which case a 12 month exception will apply from the date of purchase.
  • If a property does not meet the new insulation requirements, but a landlord can provide evidence that when insulation was originally installed it did comply with particular insulation requirements (such as the specifications outlined in the building consent or an Acceptable Solution or Verification Method) the property is excluded from new requirements, provided the insulation is in reasonable condition.

To read the full Insulation requirements, click here.

Client login makes selling easier

Harcourts-Client-Login

Paving the way, Harcourts use of technology allows for an easier and more informative selling experience for clients. One of our many technological improvements, client login, is a portal which gives clients 24 hour access to everything they need to know about what is happening with the sale of their property. This tool allows exclusive clients to remain up-to-date with the latest information on their listing.

“We appreciated that our clients wanted to hear about their property’s progress on the go and that it’s not always convenient for clients to meet face-to-face, and that’s what this portal is able to provide”, says Jason Wills, Harcourts Chief Information Officer.

Once registered, the agent then enables access to areas of the portal that will interest the client; allowing access to a range of data, documents and statistics on their listed properties.
The tool houses the marketing plan and calendar, marketing reports and feedback about a property. In addition to this, all of the documents relating to the property are held here, and the client can see how their property is performing on the various real estate portals where their property is marketed. They can receive reminders and alerts for events such as auctions or meetings and when a new document has been uploaded.

Selling property has never been easier, Harcourts tools allow for a stress-free approach to real estate. Thinking of selling? Contact us here for a complimentary market appraisal of your property.

MKR winning house for sale

My-Kitchen-Rules-Winner-Chris-Wright

A memorable piece of New Zealand TV history has hit the market, this enchanting Stone Street residence provided a faultless setting for winners Chris and Bex’s ‘Instant Restaurant’, Aspiring Fare. While most would think the extraordinary mountain and lake views would captivate the cooks, their dishes were testament to the charm the interior also holds. The generous kitchen, with granite work tops, provided an inspiring space for the duo’s ambitious menu, prompting judge Manu to call for more of the ‘perfect’ liver parfait.

The character rich home was carefully chosen for its hosting possibilities and uninterrupted views. With intimate dining spots peppered amongst the regal design, the separate dining area provides a grander space for feasts, entertaining and holding a full TVNZ film crew.

With the close proximity to the beautiful town of Wanaka and both cast and crew proclaiming their love for the ‘Fortress on the Hill’, it is no wonder why My Kitchen Rules winner and Harcourts agent, Chris Wright is proudly bringing this home to the market.

For more information on this exclusive listing click here.

My-Kitchen-Rules-Winner-Wanaka

Understanding the upcoming bright line test changes

bright-line-test-nz

Revenue Minister Stuart Nash confirmed that the election “promise” to extend the bright line test from 2 years ownership to 5 years will be enacted, effective for properties acquired after the date of Royal Assent. The intended purpose of extending the bright line test is to ‘dampen property speculation’ and make homes more affordable. The extension means that profits from residential investment properties which are bought and sold within five years will generally be taxable.

Current exemptions from the bright line test will remain. They include the sale of an owner-occupier’s main home, inherited property, or the transfer of property in a relationship settlement.

The extension to the bright line test will apply to residential investment properties purchased from the date on which the bill receives the Royal Assent, which is expected in March. Nash adds that the passage of the bill will also enable the Tax Working Group to factor the change into any consideration of a comprehensive capital gains tax.

Auckland Property Investors Association president Andrew Bruce has previously said that the changes will impact on property speculators rather than long-term investors. “The majority of property investors are in it for the longer than five years and are unlikely to feel massive levels of pain with the extension of the bright line test.

See more information on the bill, click here.

Apple recognises Harcourts custom apps across global web network

New Zealand Real Estate group Harcourts, has been selected from a world-wide category to be the first real estate company to be featured across Apple’s global web network with a case study showing how they have used Apple’s iOS technology to transform their business.

In recognition of their innovation and use of the iPad and iPhone to enhance client experience and drive greater efficiency for their business, Apple has produced a video and business case study about Harcourts’ work – an accolade reserved only for companies developing the most cutting edge business solutions using Apple technology.

Harcourts is the first company from the Australasian region, and the first real estate group world-wide, to be selected by Apple for this recognition.

Harcourts New Zealand CEO Hayden Duncan, says the custom suite of apps developed by Harcourts, is transforming the way they do business.

“By nature real estate is a mobile business. Agents are on the road, meeting clients, inspecting properties and showing homes.

“The power of Apple iOS inspired us to develop a suite of apps for our global network of sales consultants that would provide them with a full range of marketing, research and technological tools while they’re on the move. The apps save our consultants hundreds of hours per year by streamlining tasks and they help us deliver a great client experience.

“Take e-Campaign for iPad, for example. From the comfort of your living room, a sales consultant can help you build your ideal marketing campaign; displaying real-time market data from your local neighbourhood, visually showcasing the complete range of marketing options available, and booking everything into an online calendar so you know exactly what to expect every step of the way.

“Information is all stored digitally so there’s no need for paper forms or folders or for data re-entry back at the office, which means we can deliver a timely, professional, and consistent level of service,” says Mr Duncan.

Harcourts was selected above several other global real estate companies because they showed how Apple technology has enabled them to become game-changers in their industry.

“The integration of our apps both with third-party real estate data sources and the company intranet is key to our success. This means sales consultants have access to an unprecedented level of information from wherever they are providing a distinct competitive advantage,” explains Mr Duncan.

Mr Duncan says Harcourts’ focus is firmly on the future and innovation is at the forefront of everything they do.

“Client expectations are changing and it’s essential that we change with them. Technology is helping us to be more agile and responsive to our clients’ needs, delivering faster and more effective communication, and providing a seamless client experience overall.”

“Being able to launch our apps across multiple devices in multiple countries and integrate to our intranet is one of the key reasons we chose iOS as our platform.”

 

Posted in All - Otago ,

How to impress with your outdoor space

garden

When you’re getting ready to sell your property, you’re probably thinking about one thing: how to add value quickly and inexpensively.

One of the most cost-effective ways you can do this is to make sure your outdoor space is in tip-top condition.

Continue reading “How to impress with your outdoor space”

AGENT ADVICE: buying investment property in Queenstown

Queenstown is a confident property market and investors are benefiting from extremely high rental occupancy levels and year-round tourism.

Airport numbers have risen by more than 102 per cent in the last six years, the average median dwelling value in Queenstown jumped a third in a single year (2015-16), and the average house price has topped $1M. It’s easy to see why national and overseas investors continue to choose Queenstown, but there’s also a lot to consider. Continue reading “AGENT ADVICE: buying investment property in Queenstown”

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