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It’s not just the purchase price of a house. It’s all the other costs you have to cough up for when buying a property.

Purchase Price

This is what you’ll pay to purchase the property and unless you’re paying outright, it’s likely to include money you’ve saved and money you’ve borrowed. Lenders will generally ask for a minimum deposit of 10% to 20% but others may lend to you if a family member pays the deposit, signs as guarantor or buys the property with you as a co-owner. Aiming for a deposit of 20% or more of the purchase price, plus enough to cover added costs, is a good goal.

Government Fees

Stamp Duty is a land/property transfer tax applied by all Australian State and Territory governments. It is one of the most significant upfront costs you’ll have to pay and it can vary greatly depending on where your property is located.

‘Calculators Australia’ and real estate websites have an online stamp duty calculator which may be able to help you to be prepared for this cost. As example, when using the calculator on, the stamp duty for a $500,000 home would be approximately $18,263. It is a big amount isn’t it?

Legal & Conveyancing Fees

When buying property, you need to engage a conveyancer or solicitor that specialises in property conveyancing.  They’ll prepare the documentation and conduct the settlement process. The costs will vary depending on the property you buy and the person you use.

Loan Application

This is also referred to as an establishment, up-front, start-up and set-up fee. It is a one-off payment to your lender when your loan commences. Fees can vary depending on your provider and will cover things such as credit checks, property appraisals and basic admin.

Lender’s Mortgage Insurance

When applying for a loan, you may also have to pay lender’s mortgage insurance — which is a type of insurance that protects the lender from borrowers who can’t repay the loan. If you have a deposit equal to or more than 20% of a property’s purchase price, generally you won’t be asked to pay this insurance.

Building, Pest & Strata Inspection Reports

These inspections will alert you to structural problems or defects that may not be visible to the eye — asbestos, termites, electrical, ventilation and plumbing faults. A strata report, if you’re buying a townhouse or apartment, can tell you whether the property is well run, well maintained and adequately financed.

Moving Costs

If you plan on moving into the property rather than renting it out, moving costs can vary depending on distance. There are many different ways to tackle this such as renting a van and asking your mates to help or hiring a professional removalist. But just remember to factor this in.