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A ME Bank survey of 1,000 property owners has revealed that 58 per cent of Australians are spending less than 60 minutes inspecting a property before buying, with 26 per cent of surveyed respondents discovering issues with their new home, most of which were first home buyers.
A further 36 per cent of respondents claimed that they overlooked the issues because they “fell in love” with the property, while 32 per cent noted they lacked the experience and skills necessary for inspecting a property and 11 per cent claiming they were “tired of looking”.
Among owners who discovered issues, 74 per cent spent money repairing, replacing or improving the issues identified, or have plans to do so; 41 per cent would have paid less for the property had they discovered the problems earlier; and 23 per cent regretted their purchase to some extent.
ME’s head of home loans Patrick Nolan urged prospective home buyers to spend more time inspecting a property, with around a third of buyers failing to arrange a professional building or pest inspection.
“Spend more time inspecting the prospective property with several return visits at different times of the day,” Mr Nolan said.
“See lots of properties so you can compare and contrast, give weight to any niggling hunches that give you cause for concern and get a professional property inspector to do the checking for you.”
However, a vast majority — 92 per cent — of surveyed respondents claimed that the property was still worth purchasing, while 19 per cent regretted the purchase and 14 per cent planning to move sooner than desired.
[Related: FHBs urged to ‘wait on the sidelines’]