Ben McGuirk and Jennea McWilliams are saving for a home.
Ben McGuirk and Jennea McWilliams are saving for a home. Brenda Strong

4.5 year wait for house deposit

GLADSTONE housing affordability has continued to worsen over the past year, with first-home buyers in Gladstone needing a minimum 4.5 years to save for a house deposit.

 A First Time Home Buyer Report also found thousands of young Queensland residents have been forced to rent or live at home with their parents for an extra six months, as they struggle to pull together a house deposit.

 The research shows a first-time-buyer couple in Queensland needs to raise an $84,800 deposit to purchase the median house, and $72,000 to buy a median unit.

Gladstone locals and soon-to-be-married couple Jennea McWilliams and Ben McGuirk said saving for a deposit was hard.

“We are currently living with family to keep costs down because it’s too expensive to try and save a $90,000 deposit while paying rent,” Mr McGuirk said.

“It’s insane and it’s really hard to do, especially when we both aren’t fully qualified and in full-time jobs.

“With everything going up, like groceries, it just makes it harder,” he said.

Central Queensland Aussie Home Loans manager Brendan Ryan said a personal budget - detailing income and expenses - can help with a plan for maximising savings.

“Consolidating other personal debts could also help reduce payments and build savings,” Mr Ryan said. “For example, transferring to a credit card with a cheaper interest rate.

“Lenders are still looking for at least 5 per cent deposit for a home loan,” he said.  

When it comes to units, the time needed to secure a down-payment is 3.7 years.

Bankwest retail chief executive Vittoria Shortt said this was the stark reality of a strong Australian property sector.

 “Increasingly we are seeing an entrenched two-speed market emerging, with property owners on one side and a growing army of first home buyers seemingly locked out on the other,” Ms Shortt said.  

“First-time buyers wanting property in areas along the state’s beautiful coastline and in the mining rich towns are taking the longest to save a deposit.”

Home Loan Tip

Add up all the fees when buying.

Don’t forget to take into account all of the extra fees when you purchase a home, these could include:

  • mortgage insurance
  • loan application fee
  • refinancing or switching fees
  • legal costs, stamp duty
  • builder’s report and a valuation fee.

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