Demand strong for cheaper properties

A FIRST home owners seminar held in Maclean last week showed young people were still interested in buying their own home despite a tightening economy.

Travis McConnell from LJ Hooker Maclean said about 20 people attended the seminar, which involved guest speakers from the finance, legal and building industries talking about their roles and answering questions.

“We held this info night to help people understand the processes involved in buying a house,” Mr McConnell said.

“We had professionals from their chosen fields giving young people information so they could make an informed decision.”

Mr McConnell said the First Home Owners Grant had helped keep the real estate industry moving despite the slowing economy.

He said the continuing cheap house prices in the Clarence Valley was also contributing to a strong local market.

Karla Hubbard of Yamba attended the seminar and said it provided valuable information on issues she needed to know about.

Ms Hubbard and her partner Wayne Rush are buying their first home and said the grant and the cheap local market were instrumental in helping them achieve their goal of home ownership.

“Without the grant we wouldn't have been able to afford it yet; it would have taken us a few more years,” she said.

“Our dream has always been to own our own home. The sooner you're in it, the sooner you can start paying it off.”

Ms Hubbard said she was surprised how many houses were available in her price range but was also surprised how quickly they were selling.

“Houses between $250,000 and $300,000 are going really quickly; there was more activity than what I anticipated,” she said.

The first home-owners grant is set to expire at the end of June, but rumours suggest it may be extended.

Buyers can receive up to $14,000 and have their stamp-duty paid if they buy an established home; or receive up to $24,000 if they build.

“There was more activity than I anticipated”

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