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Buyers Agents Blog

Property tips and updates for Melbourne home buyers. We specialise in helping first time home, house or property buyers in Melbourne, Victoria and we offer a FLAT FEE Buyers Agent or Buyers Advocate service.

First home buyers gain a foothold in Sydney and Melbourne

Julie DeBondt Barker - Friday, April 27, 2018

Isabelle Lane Property Reporter from the New Daily reported on April 27, 2018, that First home buyers are gaining a foothold in Sydney and Melbourne (Original:

First home buyers gain a foothold in Melbourne and Sydney

Isabelle reported that ... "Incentives designed to help first home buyers gain a foothold in the increasingly unaffordable Sydney and Melbourne housing markets appear to be helping."

"Australian Bureau of Statistics data shows a surge in first home buyers in Sydney and Melbourne since stamp duty exemptions took effect on July 1 2017."


"Buyers Home Base director Julie DeBondt-Barker is a Melbourne-based buyer’s advocate who specialises in helping first home buyers."

"Pretty much all first home buyers are motivated by first home owners grants and the stamp duty concessions,” Ms DeBondt-Barker said.

“Without that assistance they wouldn’t be buying.”

While the housing market in Sydney and Melbourne may have softened recently, Ms DeBondt-Barker says the competition among first home buyers remains fierce.

“The softening isn’t happening so much in the areas where first homebuyers are, such as the newer suburbs. It’s happening in the blue chip areas,” Ms DeBondt-Barker said.

“The further out you go there is a lot of competition still.”

Ms DeBondt-Barker advises first home buyers – who are often “very emotive” – to be realistic about what they can afford.

“Be absolutely sure that you can afford it and that it’s not going to disrupt your lifestyle, and if the interest rates go up it’s not going to sink you,” she said.

You can read the full article here:

Stamp duty cuts hurt first-time buyers

Julie DeBondt Barker - Saturday, April 07, 2018

Michael Bleby reported in the Australian Financial review on April 7, 2018, that recent Stamp Duty cuts have hurt first time home buyers (Original:

Stamp Duty cuts have hurt first time home buyers

The key points from this article were:-

  • First home buyers have more money available, but that’s pushed up prices.
  • Political leaders in two biggest states accused of simply playing politics.
  • Stamp duty cuts made last year to help first home buyers in Victoria and NSW are making it harder for them by pushing prices higher.

He went on to report the following:-

Stamp duty cuts for first home buyers made by the Victorian and NSW governments in July last year are now coming back to harm the very home buyers those state’s political leaders said they were designed to help.

The stamp duty change, which eliminated the transaction tax on homes worth up to $600,000 and cut it on prices up to $750,000 was a disaster for Ms Lev, said her buyers agent Julie DeBondt-Barker.

‘‘It made it worse,’’ Ms DeBondt-Barker said. ‘‘She’s always chasing it.’’

Australia’s east-coast dominated housing market is slowing and prices are falling overall in the two largest cities. NAB, the fourth-biggest residential lender on Friday predicted a national fall of 0.8 per cent in house prices, reversing its earlier expectation of 0.7 per cent gain. But in Melbourne, while prices have flattened in blue-chip areas, the picture was very different in more affordable suburbs, Ms DeBondt-Barker said.

‘‘If you go to Epping, Werribee, Tarneit, Cranbourne – Frankston’s gone nuts – if you go to the outer suburbs, the only ones first home buyers can get into now, it’s absolutely soaring and is still going up,’’ she said.

The policy does assist some buyers in the first instance by cutting the stamp duty bill they have to pay on their purchase. On a home with a price tag of $650,000, for example, stamp duty is cut from $34,070 to $11,356, giving the buyer more money to spend up front. For a property costing $600,000 the $31,070 bill they would otherwise pay is eliminated. But that – along with other policies such as first home buyer grants – simply means the first group of buyers have more money to throw at vendors, pushing the overall market higher for subsequent waves of buyers.

Ms DeBondt-Barker, a principal of Buyers Home Base, says political leaders of the two largest states were just playing politics and not genuinely trying to help first-time buyers.

‘‘It was a political move, if anything,’’ she said. ‘‘Anybody in the field thought ‘That’s ridiculous, it’s never going to work’. It was obviously going to go this way.’’

You can read the full article here

Buyer Agent New Fees & Service Summary

Julie DeBondt Barker - Monday, June 27, 2016

Our latest Buyers Agents feesPlease click on the following link to view a PDF file showing our current Buyer's Advocate flat fee rates and a summary of the Buyer's Agenct services we offer, These figures or fees are effective as of 1 July 2016:

Click here to view a PDF of our Buyers Agent Fees

(Effective as of July 1 2016):

Buyer's Agent Services for ...

Purchase Price

Flat Fee

First Home Buyers

Below $700,000

$3,000 (+ GST)

First Home Buyers

$700,000 And Above

$5,000 (+ GST)

All Other Buyers

Any Price

$6,000 (+ GST)

Seamless Service Advocacy

Any Price

$6,000 (+ GST)

Auction / Negotiation Only

Any Price

$1,500 (+ GST)

Payment Terms – First Home Buyers

* Initial Engagement Fee Payable On Commencement $1,000 (+ GST)

* Balance Due When A Property Is Purchased

Payment Terms – All Other Buyers & Seamless Service Buyer's Advocacy

* Initial Engagement Fee Payable On Commencement $2,000 (+ GST)

* Balance Due When A Property Is Purchased $4,000 (+ GST)

Payment Terms – Auction / Negotiation Only (One time only)

* Fee Payable On Commencement Or Prior To Bidding $1,500 (+ GST)

Calling all Baby-Boomers & Down Sizers!

Julie DeBondt Barker - Sunday, June 26, 2016

New "Seamless Service"

Are you thinking of Selling your existing home, AND then Buying a new one?  Before you start talking to the Real Estate Agents and interviewing them, talk to us.

We'll become your own personal professional that oversees the entire process of both selling and buying for you. From interviewing and selecting the right Agent to sell your home, to negotiating the very best price for your new home….and everything in between. All you have to do is start packing.  Sound too good to be true?

See what Graeme and Maree thought of our  “SEAMLESS SERVICE ADVOCACY" here! 

Buyers Home Base is now a Seamless Service Advocacy that takes away the stress of both Selling AND Buying. 

From interviewing the Agents to settlement on your new home, we are there every step of the way ensuring that our Clients are getting the very best result.

Here’s some of what we will do for you and your clients:

  • We will Interview potential Sales Agents (with or without you being there), who then will report directly to us, throughout the Selling campaign, so no games can be played. 
  • We will appraise your existing house to ensure that the appraisal by the selected Agent is not inflated. Getting your numbers right is critical for your change-over and your next purchase.
  • We then oversee the sale, managing the Agent and holding them to account to do what they said they would do.  
  • We are there during all negotiations and/or the Auction.

Meanwhile, from the brief that we have been given about the next home:<

  • We will search, inspect and advise you about your next home.
  • We liaise with all the other professionals to make sure it is a safe and smooth transaction.
  • All of negotiations and/or bidding at Auction will be completed by us.
  • We will align Settlement Dates so there is no gap and no stress.

For more information on our new Seamless Service - please call us on 1300 882 842 or contact us by email!

We've now added an information display at the Home Innovation Centre, so that when Home Owners are looking to buy a new property, they know that we are here to help them save time, heartache and money.

Find out more - HERE.

EOFY: And That’s A Wrap……

Julie DeBondt Barker - Sunday, June 19, 2016

As we approach another close to the financial year, we look at the crazy Melbourne property market and ask ourselves, “where to from here?”

2015-2016 has seen historically low interest rates – still holding, and the price of property still rising.

Many First Home Buyers are taking advantage of these low interest rates, and are stepping over the $600,000 (for existing properties) threshold and are forfeiting their Stamp Duty savings.

The median price of a home in Melbourne now is above $700,000.

This year saw changes in foreign investment, which slowed down the market to some degree…..but mainly in the areas that have highly sought after schools.  

As autumn spilled into winter, any hope of the house or home prices slowing down were shattered by the low stock levels.

Clearance rates are still soaring and home, house and property prices are still moving upwards.

So, when will this bubble burst?

At this stage there is no obvious end in sight.

More stock coming onto the market will help stabilise it. A new government perhaps? Changes to negative gearing?  The fallout from Brexit? Possibly.  We will all have to wait and see what the new tax year and the changes that may come will provide.

But for now, the best advice Buyers Home Base can offer is that if you are still renting – save your money for a deposit.  And if you are looking to invest, there are still lots of great opportunities out there!

We're now at the Home Innovation Centre

Julie DeBondt Barker - Friday, June 17, 2016

We're now at the Home Innovation CentreWe're now at the Home Innovation Centre

Now there's a permanent place for people to get inspiration on their home renovations. It's called the "Home Innovation Centre" and is located at 111 Cranbourne-Frankston Rd, Frankston. They are open 7 days a week.

The Home Innovation Centre features a wide range of home building, renovation, design and styling products.

Buyers Home Base now has a display in the centre and is attracting people who are at the early stages of thinking about selling. As many people decide to renovate their homes before selling, our involvement at the Home Innovation Centre enables these people know that we are here to help them save time, heartache and money.

Find out more - Visit their website.

If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail

Julie DeBondt Barker - Wednesday, June 15, 2016

>The End of Financial Year (EOFY) is a great time to review - or start a plan.The End of Financial Year (EOFY) is a great time to review - or start a plan.

Whether you are a First Home Buyer - or an investor, now is a good time to take stock of your financial situation and plan ahead.

Here are our tried and tested tips that we provide to excited First Home Buyers to help get them started.

  • Create a budget and then stick to it. Know where your money is going each week.
  • Start – or maybe – restart a structured saving plan to get your deposit together. You will need to show the banks that you have a good saving habit when you finally get there and are applying for your home loan.
  • Find a Mortgage Broker that you feel comfortable with and who will explain all of your options.  Is gifting from a parent an option? What is LMI and how does it affect me?  Should you consider debt consolidation? What about getting rid of your credit cards or reducing the credit limit on them? Get the facts.
  • Set a savings target for your deposit and then watch it grow!

Settlement before June 30? It’s possible!

Julie DeBondt Barker - Monday, April 18, 2016

Keep calm. The end of the financial years is approaching but you can still settle on your new home!If you’re time poor and think settling BEFORE June 30 this year is out of reach… think again!

Every year, right before the end of the Financial Year, Mortgage Brokers brace themselves for the storm! The storm starts when Financial Advisors, who understand the value of investing in property because of the various tax reduction benefits, advise their clients to purchase an investment property before June 30.

Buyers Home Base was founded by helping First Home Buyers. However, because of our fantastic results, many of our clients are now referring their friends to us. So now, we’re also working for investors and people purchasing their second, third or subsequent house or property.

If you’re looking to purchase and settle before June 30, increased competition and price pressures can make meeting this deadline even more challenging. By having Buyers Home Base on your side, you’ll place yourself ahead of the competition.

Time poor investors and property hunters can put themselves ahead of the rest.

If you’re an investor looking for a property, or someone you know has been advised to “go out and purchase an investment property before June 30”, then there’s no time to waste.

With only around 40 shopping days left, to maximise your chance of settling by June 30 – your first move should be to call us 1300 882 842 or 1300 882 842.

Look what's getting bigger!

Julie DeBondt Barker - Monday, April 18, 2016

Melbourne is growing faster than any other city in AustraliaFor a long time, Sydney has held the title of Australia’s largest city. That’s all about to change.

ABS data shows that Melbourne's population grew by 1,760 people each week during the 2014-15 year. In fact, more people are moving to Victoria, than Queensland!

Such rapid growth is great for the economy [and house prices], however, governments must invest in infrastructure to cope.

The Victorian Andrews Labor government has revealed its plans to support such rapid population growth. The government is targeting long-term liveability, and will invest heavily in education, health and infrastructure

The State Minister for Planning Richard Wynne said, "The Andrews Labor Government has a plan for smart growth. We need to make sure housing is available to everyone, delivering housing options throughout the city with the access to education, health services and the transport people deserve."

The state government is reviewing its 'Plan Melbourne' document, with a view to placing greater emphasis on housing affordability and climate change. Also under review are widely criticised residential zoning policies.

The government is also working on plans for 640 hectares of land within 5 km of the Melbourne CBD, growing the population close to the city centre, rather than contributing to urban sprawl. Plans for the Fisherman’s Bend area are also underway.

The Labor government has released a long-term infrastructure plan, 'Managing Growth', for Melbourne's outer suburbs.

"We are the world's most liveable city," said Wynne. "People are naturally drawn to Melbourne, and we need to plan accordingly."

What this means to you!

With increased numbers, comes increased competition, which can result in increased prices [of course, we’re talking houses here]. That’s why having a Buyers Advocate on your side, can help you purchase your home sooner at the best price on the market. Call us on 1 300 882 842 or 1 300 882 842or make an enquiry with us here.

Additional information from:

See you at the HIA Home Show!

Julie DeBondt Barker - Monday, April 18, 2016

We are very excited to be the only Buyers Advocates featuring at this year’s HIA Home Show! Trade ShowIt’s on this week – from Thursday April 21 thru Sunday 24 at Jeff’s Shed (Melbourne Exhibition Centre). Opening times are Thursday 10am - 6pm, Friday 10am-9pm, Saturday 10am-9pm and Sunday 10am-6pm.

Come visit us at Stand S-16, on the outside wall.  It’s the perfect opportunity to discuss your plans, and see how we can help you out of the Home Buyer’s maze. Want discounted entry tickets? Find out how - here!

We are very excited to be the only Buyers Advocates featuring at this year’s show!

If you have any clients, friends or family members that are thinking about buying a home and would like some good advice, please tell them to come and see us there.

If they book a FREE 1 hour consultation at the show, they will go into a draw to win a weekend away at a luxury hotel and a bottle of champagne! Don’t miss this great opportunity to receive expert advice, and more importantly, the keys to your new house faster – for less!

Psst: Here’s another tip: Buy your entry tickets online, before the show and save! Full details here!

Free Consultation - Click here!

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