It takes first home buyers 44 hours to find a property

author-avatar By on February 24, 2020
It takes first home buyers 44 hours to find a property

Photo by Thom Holmes on Unsplash

It takes longer than the average working week for first home buyers to find their 'dream' property, according to new research from St. George.

The 2020 St. George Home Buying Survey, conducted by Lonergan Research on 1,483 Australians, found first home buyers spent 44 hours looking for their first property, and that's before even undertaking the home buying process.

This 44 hours includes spending time researching properties, looking up lenders and applying for a home loan. 

Nine in ten first home buyers believe their application process needs to catch up to the digital age, with the millennial generation twice as likely to use apps for their property search.

Eight in ten also find the application process for a home loan time consuming and inconvenient, and half are 'pained' by the overall amount of information they need to process.

The main hurdles in the buying process, according to survey respondents were:

  • Understanding what is involved (73% saying it's a major hurdle)
  • Learning about the housing market (71%)
  • Working out their financials (64%)

Time-poor first home buyers researched properties and home loans while on holiday (42%), watching TV (35%), during their lunch break (26%), and in the bathroom (11%).

This research comes after St. George launched its 'Property' app in November, which aims to match potential buyers with properties based on lifestyle factors, rather than suburb as a primary discriminator. 

Powered by Domain data and home listings, the app can also be used in lieu of the bank's paperless home loan application, which shifts the process totally online, with online support and lending experts also available.

St. George Bank general manager Ross Miller said searching by lifestyle and wish list is a potential 'game changer'.

“For example, if being beachside and close to schools is top of your list, searching by these functions may reveal a whole range of ideal properties in previously unconsidered locations and, within your price range," Mr Miller said.

“Users can prioritise commuting times, by what method of transport, proximity to bars and restaurants and even their parents’ house or schools.

"They can also set their search for what type of area they want to live in such as ‘beachy’, ‘leafy’ or city."

The app also includes a ‘Market Thermometer’ and property price estimates, to help property searchers determine if it's a good time to buy.

The survey results come after it was reported just 35-40% of homes in the market will be available to those participating in the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme, under the current price caps.

Looking for your first home? The table below displays some of the lowest-rate variable home loans currently on the market for owner occupiers:

Lender
Advertised rate Comparison rate Monthly repayment Rate TypeOffsetRedrawOngoing FeeUpfront FeesLVRLump Sum RepaymentAdditional RepaymentsPre-approval
VariableMore details
LIMITED TIME OFFER

Smart Booster Home Loan Discounted Variable - 2yr (LVR < 80%)

  • Fast turnaround times, can meet 30-day settlement
  • For purchase and refinance, min 20% deposit
  • No ongoing or monthly fees, add offset for 0.10%
LIMITED TIME OFFER

Smart Booster Home Loan Discounted Variable - 2yr (LVR < 80%)

  • Fast turnaround times, can meet 30-day settlement
  • For purchase and refinance, min 20% deposit
  • No ongoing or monthly fees, add offset for 0.10%
VariableMore details
100% FULL OFFSET ACCOUNTNO APPLICATION FEE OR ONGOING FEES

Low Rate Home Loan - Prime (Principal and Interest) (Owner Occupied) (LVR < 60%)

  • No upfront or ongoing fees
  • 100% full offset account
  • Extra repayments + redraw services
100% FULL OFFSET ACCOUNTNO APPLICATION FEE OR ONGOING FEES

Low Rate Home Loan - Prime (Principal and Interest) (Owner Occupied) (LVR < 60%)

  • No upfront or ongoing fees
  • 100% full offset account
  • Extra repayments + redraw services
VariableMore details
REFINANCE IN MINUTES, NOT WEEKS

Nano Home Loans Variable Owner Occupied, Principal and Interest (Refinance Only)

  • Refinance only. Fast online application
  • No Nano fees. Free 100% offset sub account
  • Mobile app, Visa debit card & instant payments
REFINANCE IN MINUTES, NOT WEEKS

Nano Home Loans Variable Owner Occupied, Principal and Interest (Refinance Only)

  • Refinance only. Fast online application
  • No Nano fees. Free 100% offset sub account
  • Mobile app, Visa debit card & instant payments
VariableMore details
YOU COULD WIN $100k TO PAY DOWN YOUR LOAN*

Owner Occupier Accelerates - Celebrate (LVR < 60%) (Principal and Interest)

  • For a chance to win $100K towards your home loan, apply with Athena before Oct 31 & be approved by Dec 15
  • We lower your rate based off how much you’ve paid down your loan
  • Automatic rate match
YOU COULD WIN $100k TO PAY DOWN YOUR LOAN*

Owner Occupier Accelerates - Celebrate (LVR < 60%) (Principal and Interest)

  • For a chance to win $100K towards your home loan, apply with Athena before Oct 31 & be approved by Dec 15
  • We lower your rate based off how much you’ve paid down your loan
  • Automatic rate match
VariableMore details
AN EASY ONLINE APPLICATION

Yard Home Loan (Principal and Interest) (Special) (LVR < 70%)

  • Unlimited additional repayments
  • Unlimited free redraws
  • Optional 100% offset can be added for $120 p.a.^
AN EASY ONLINE APPLICATION

Yard Home Loan (Principal and Interest) (Special) (LVR < 70%)

  • Unlimited additional repayments
  • Unlimited free redraws
  • Optional 100% offset can be added for $120 p.a.^

Rates correct as of October 19, 2021. View disclaimer.


Disclaimers

The entire market was not considered in selecting the above products. Rather, a cut-down portion of the market has been considered which includes retail products from at least the big four banks, the top 10 customer-owned institutions and Australia’s larger non-banks:

  • The big four banks are: ANZ, CBA, NAB and Westpac
  • The top 10 customer-owned Institutions are the ten largest mutual banks, credit unions and building societies in Australia, ranked by assets under management in November 2020. They are (in descending order): Great Southern Bank, Newcastle Permanent, Heritage Bank, Peoples’ Choice Credit Union, Teachers Mutual Bank, Greater Bank, IMB Bank, Beyond Bank, Bank Australia and P&N Bank.
  • The larger non-bank lenders are those who (in 2020) has more than $9 billion in Australian funded loans and advances. These groups are: Resimac, Pepper, Liberty and Firstmac.
  • If you click on a product link and you are referred to a Product or Service Provider’s web page, it is highly likely that a commercial relationship exists between that Product or Service Provider and Savings.com.au

Some providers' products may not be available in all states. To be considered, the product and rate must be clearly published on the product provider's web site.

In the interests of full disclosure, Savings.com.au, Performance Drive and Loans.com.au are part of the Firstmac Group. To read about how Savings.com.au manages potential conflicts of interest, along with how we get paid, please click through onto the web site links.

*Comparison rate is based on a loan of $150,000 over a term of 25 years. Please note the comparison rate only applies to the examples given. Different loan amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees and costs savings, such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan.

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author-avatar
Harrison is Savings.com.au's Assistant Editor. Prior to joining Savings in January 2020, he worked for some of Australia's largest comparison sites and media organisations. With a keen interest in the economy, housing policy, and personal finance, Harrison is passionate about breaking down complex financial topics for the everyday consumer.

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