Finding a place to live in a city as big as Melbourne can be challenging. Although there is no lack of options, even just choosing an area to live in could already be difficult. The great and expansive transportation system makes it easy to find a home without being too isolated from the center.
There are many different options for real estate in Melbourne, from houses to town homes, all the way to flats. Though families generally dream of a house with a big yard for the kids, they might be normally found on the outskirts of the city, where there is more space. Therefore, living close to the center and to where most businesses and jobs are can be one of the top reasons to live in an apartment. Depending on your needs, budget and preferences, there is always something for you.
A friend who was looking for a place asked for my help. Though I am willing to offer my support, having three kids doesn’t give me as much free time as I would like to have. Instead of looking through hundreds of ads and wasting a lot of time on calling and looking at flats, this can be made easier by just getting the help of a property specialist. As with my friend who is working full-time, hiring a professional was simply the only way to go. Once she decided on one, we went to visit their Melbourne office to see the available properties for her.
The experience of helping her with her search convinced me of two things that are necessary if you are looking for your next abode:
Be Clear on What You Want
It can be easy to get swayed by wonderful pictures of houses with gardens but if you are sure that this is not what you want, do not even consider it. You might end up buying something that you will regret once you start the daily one-hour commutes to work. Therefore, understanding what you want is necessary to narrow down the options. Even if you are just looking for an apartment to rent, the fact is that moving takes time and energy. Needing to pack and unpack often is not something you want to go through.
To begin your search, ask yourself what you need or want. How many rooms do you require? In which area are you hoping to live in, or at least, which transport lines should be close by? What amenities, like a balcony or a garden, are you looking for? By identifying what is the most important to you and what you foresee you need in the future can really guide you in this process.
Get a Property Specialist
I cannot emphasize enough how much easier it can be when you contract the services of a professional. They can help narrow down the search from hundreds of properties available out there, and can recommend a few you can really focus on. Although there are reports of dubious agents out there, it still is not enough reason to do the time-consuming and tiring process alone. Ask around for recommendations of good professionals out there, so you are sure that you will find a good partner during this time.
Another advantage of having an agent is that you might gain access to properties that are not easily found if you did it alone. They might have connections even with developers who can help you score a great apartment pre-construction. They might even help you with the negotiation of the price, which is also a huge help. In the end, they are worth every dollar you pay.
Buying or even renting a place also requires paperwork, inspections, legalities and other technicalities to finalize the process. Your agent can help sort through what needs to be done and provide support. Especially for those who have no experience in leasing or purchasing property, this help is god-sent. Although you can also spend time researching it on your own and asking friends or other professionals on how to do it yourself, the fact is, most people simply do not have the time or patience to deal with all of it.
Following these tips have certainly helped my friend settle down in a great flat close to her workplace with a wonderful view over a small neighborhood park. Her experience with her specialist was positive and helpful in reducing the chore of sorting through Melbourne’s huge real estate market. Being one of the most livable cities out there, it can certainly be a journey finding your next new abode.