Last week, one lucky BOQ first home buyer won a whopping $25,000! Rachelle, from Western Australia, was the lucky winner! We chatted to Rachelle about her experience with BOQ, her home buying process and how she is going to spend the big bucks!
Rachelle has been renting ever since she moved to Perth for university 8 years ago. However, recently she decided to take the plunge and buy her own home, somewhere she could make her own. The home-buying process was a quick one for Rachelle, who found her dream place and put in an offer after only a month of looking. A testament to the strong market for first home buyers in Western Australia at the moment.
In early December, right around the time that Rachelle was purchasing her new home, Western Australia was being touted as the “best state to jump on the property ladder,” with the the size of the deposit, and the time it takes to save it falling throughout 2017, instead of increasing like many other states.
Rachelle told us the criteria she used to find her perfect home in Perth included being within a 30-minute drive of work, not on a main road and a large second bedroom. She also mentioned that while she preferred to buy a newly built home, she didn’t mind getting a place that was a bit older as long as it didn’t need too many renovations or too much money spent on it.
In Western Australia, a first home buyer grant of up to $10,000 is available for eligible first home buyers. Rachelle qualified for the grant and with the help of her Lending Manager Mark at BOQ Floreat, Rachelle was able to submit an application for the grant, which is still pending.
Did you always plan to take out your home loan with BOQ or were you considering other banks?
Well, at the time of application, BOQ had the best rates. I think in total there were about 6 banks that I met with, but I did a lot of online research as well.
I haven’t been a BOQ customer before, but I just decided to jump ship and put everything in with BOQ.
How did you find the home loan process with BOQ?
Mark (the Lending Manager at BOQ Floreat) and everyone at BOQ Floreat were really friendly and helpful. I was very overwhelmed and stressed about the whole process and the staff went above and beyond to do little things for me and to help me as much as they could.
During the home-buying process, what did you find most stressful?
That’s hard to identify, but I’d probably say looking around for different home loans available to me. I think it’s stressful because it’s a big decision and I’m was constantly thinking, “wow, I’m actually doing this.”
Where did you start your research?
I started looking at home loans online. I then chose which banks to go see based on how good the rates were and which branches were most convenient for me to get to.
Were you given guidance during the process from your friends and family, by your solicitor or by your bank?
Mostly by my parents, they were really good. There were a few times when Mark (BOQ Floreat Lending Manager) gave me guidance in terms of what to expect during each stage of the process.
Did you mostly communicate with your branch face-to-face, over the phone or by email?
It was a mix, initially it was face-to-face, then there was a lot of correspondence via email, and if I ever needed to get something to Mark (BOQ Floreat Lending Manager) I would just pop into the branch and drop it off and the other staff members would pass it along for me.
What’s your advice for other first home buyers?
Well, I pretty much rushed into it myself and jumped right in. It depends on the person, but I’d say, look around and make sure you compare the rates available. I liked to do the research myself so that I could get explanations directly from the branch and meet people face-to-face to get quotes for the loan. I thought that was really helpful.
Rachelle is being very smart about spending the $25K, telling us that she will put most of the money into a savings account as a safety net for the future and the rest she will spend on herself and her immediate family.
If you’re currently looking to buy your first home, then you’re in luck! BOQ is running the $25K first home buyer competition again. Find out more at boq.com.au/first-home-loan-offer/