Looking for homes

2 Looking for homes

Looking for homes

After you have gathered your deposit and received pre-approval from your lender, your next step is to figure out your home needs and wants. You will then need to research property and ownership types, as well as sale options, to figure out which available houses could become your first home. 

What are you looking for?

Finding the right home can take a lot of time and energy, so it’s a good idea to write down what is important to you before you start.


Sort this list into “non-negotiables” and “aspirations”. Non-negotiables are aspects that your home must have to meet your specific needs. For example, a family of three may need two bedrooms, one for the parents and one for the child. Your aspirations are aspects of the home that are not necessary to meet your specific needs but are qualities that would be nice to have. For example, a family of three might wish to have a three bedroom home so that they can have a guest room.

If you are buying a home with somebody else, we recommend doing your lists separately. Once you have written your lists, compare them and create a new list together that meets everybody’s needs and wants.

Types of ownership

There are four main types of property ownership in New Zealand.

They are:

  • Freehold
  • Leasehold
  • Cross Lease
  • Unit Title

Each type has different rights, responsibilities and restrictions for the owners. The type of ownership will have a direct impact on what you can and cannot do with the property. It is important to talk to your lawyer and get their advice about these different house types and what it will mean for you.

For more information about the different types of ownership click here 

Types of properties

There are many different property types, each with their own pros and cons. Your ideal property type will depend on your lifestyle, non-negotiables and aspirations, as well as your future plans.

Examples of property types include:

  • Apartments
  • Townhouse
  • Terrace
  • Duplex
  • Freestanding (Stand-alone)

Do your research and narrow down which property types are best for you before you start looking, you could save yourself a lot of time by doing this.

For more information about the different types of properties click here

Sale options

There are three main ways to buy a house in New Zealand.

  • Offer and negotiation
  • Tender
  • Auction

For more more information on negotiation, tender and auction sale options click here 

Do your homework

To narrow down your possible home options, use your non-negotiable list, pre-approved price range and what you now know about land ownership, property options and sale types. There are a lot of homes on the market, so going in with a filtered search will make it less overwhelming.

Once you have found homes that you like, research them more and make sure you walk through it in person, either at an open home or a scheduled time with the sales person. When looking at buying a brand new home, check out the showhome or sales suites during their opening hours or make an appointment to view. We recommend going to showhomes and talking to sales teams in person, so they can help you identify if their new homes meet your requirements.

For more information on how to research properties click here 

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