first-home buyers

The second-best option for first-home buyers in a hot market

PHOTO: First-home owners Gemma Cardelli and Rob Vukovic spent about three months renovating. Photo: Peter Rae

First-home buyers are turning to dated properties in need of a renovation, as rapidly rising prices push them to compromise to get onto the property ladder.

More than half of Australians buying their first home intend to renovate it within a year, a new survey shows, with one in five planning to renovate immediately after buying.

A further 23 per cent would undertake a renovation within five years, according to a recent survey by comparison website Finder.

Skyrocketing property prices have instilled a fear of missing out among first-home buyers, with many looking to make compromises to get into the market sooner rather than later, said Sarah Megginson, Finder’s senior home loans editor.

“In a hot market, it’s not always possible to buy your ideal home, let alone your dream home,” she said. “What some first-home buyers are finding is that their best chance to get on the property ladder is by purchasing a ‘fixer-upper’ in a suitable suburb.”

Couple planning renovation.
More than half of Australians buying their first home intend to renovate it within a year. Photo: iStock

City dwellers (82 per cent) were more likely to buy with plans to renovate than their regional peers (75 per cent), while NSW first-home buyers (84 per cent) were more likely to renovate than their counterparts in Victoria (77 per cent) and Queensland (75 per cent). More than half of NSW first-home buyers intended to tackle a renovation with a year of purchasing.

“Property prices are so much higher in NSW, so you have to be willing to negotiate and compromise a little bit more,” Ms Megginson said.