OPINION

Don't listen to your parents when buying your first home

First home buyers beware - take the advice given by your parents with a grain of salt.

The experience of buying or building your first home in 2019 is so different to that of 20-30 years ago that the advice of the past no longer applies.

A lot of young Australians might feel pressure to jump on the property ladder early, because their parents are worried they'll waste money on rent and lose investment opportunities. But it's nowhere near as easy as used to be.

There's a reason that first home buyers are older than ever before - in fact, there are several.

Wages haven't kept up with house prices. Interest rates are lower, but competition is higher. The percentage of income required for a deposit has risen. We live in a higher density society.

So don't feel like you need to live up to the standards of the 1980s and 90s - most of us simply can't.

In the modern market, one of the biggest mistakes you can make is to succumb to the pressure to own property before you're financially ready.

Today's market rewards savvy, educated, financially secure buyers who buy at the right time and in the right place. Savvy buyers are particularly rewarded in the regions, where identifying growth areas can deliver handsome returns.

Infrastructure growth and technological improvements mean that real estate outside of the major cities is full of opportunity for first home buyers that don't compromise lifestyle choices.

The good news is that while it might be financially more difficult to get that first home, buyers have never had as much access to the information they need to make a wise decision as right now, with everything from house designs to mortgage comparisons available at the touch of a button.

The other good news is that the opportunities for buyers are increasing by the week. In many parts of the country, house prices are bottoming out. The recent decision by APRA to soften the rules around home loans will help, as will increasing confidence in the market after a lean few years.

And if you're building, there are huge discounts available right now, thanks to a slow market where builders are actively looking for customers.

So unless they're real estate experts, don't succumb to pressure from your parents.

All the resources you need are at your fingertips to buy the home you've always wanted - when you're ready.

Chelsey Quartermain is general manager of houseandland.com.au