Hats off to Australia’s first home buyers! The latest lending data shows they’re refusing to let last year’s rate hikes and rising property values dampen their goal of buying a home. Here are five tips to help you buy your first home in 2024.

You’ve gotta hand it to first home buyers in the current market.

Not only were they faced with 13 cash rate hikes in just 18 months – which can obviously affect borrowing capacity – but property prices still rose 8.1% in 2023, according to CoreLogic.

Still, they won’t be deterred.

The latest lending data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows a massive 20.3% jump in the number of loans to first home buyers last year.

But it takes more than grit and determination to buy your first home. A few handy hints can also help.

If you’re hoping to buy your first home, below our top tips can help you become home loan-ready in 2024.

1. Make a visit to a lending specialist your first step

First home buyers are often unsure about what’s involved in buying a home. That’s fair enough.

We can help you know where you stand in terms of loan approval, the costs you should plan for, and the steps you can take now to help improve your finances.

We can also help you identify what government stamp duty exemptions of grants you can apply for to help make things easier. In relation to grants like the First Home Owner’s, we can even assist you with the paperwork and lodge the application with the lender or relevant state department.

2. Save, save and save some more

Lenders like to see you have a decent track record of regular saving. It shows you have the discipline to manage home loan repayments.

Look at your budget, work out where you can trim back, and consider funnelling as much into savings as possible.

It may mean cutting back on luxuries and treats for a while but it’s not forever. And the more you save now, the less you potentially need to borrow.

We can help you with this, and if a pre-approval, work with you to keep you on track.

3. Consider lowering your credit card limit

When you apply for a home loan, lenders are often more interested in the limit on your credit card than the balance outstanding.

That’s because you could, in theory, max out your card after buying a home, which may affect your ability to manage mortgage repayments.

The average card limit is about $9,500, according to a Finder analysis of RBA data.

Shrinking this down (with a quick call to your card issuer) might get you over the line for the loan you need.

4. Check out first home buyer support schemes

There’s a tonne of potential support for first home buyers – from First Home Owner Grants (FHOG) to possible savings on stamp duty.

We can explain what you might be eligible for, but research of your own can narrow down your choice of property.

Some support payments are only available if you buy or build a new home, and many have property price caps.

5. You probably don’t need a 20% deposit

Sure, a 20% deposit is a target worth aiming for.

But you may be able to buy with less.

The First Home Guarantee and Regional First Home Buyer Guarantee let first home buyers get into the market with just a 5% deposit and no lenders mortgage insurance.

That might mean you’re ready to buy now!

Find out more

If you’re ready to take the plunge and buy your first home we can help get a plan in place to make it happen.

Our lending specialists use a “Get to know you” approach which keeps things simple for you and helps us explore every option. We’ll calculate your borrowing power, assess your deposit options, and help you apply for any government incentives.

Our lending specialists offer free advice and are available online, on the phone, or in person.

We make home loans simple.

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This article is prepared based on general information. It does not take into account individual financial objectives or needs and is not financial product advice.