Homeownership isn’t just about bricks and mortar; it’s about building a secure future, crafting your own haven, and investing in both your wellbeing and your wealth. Homeownership provides huge benefits that renters miss out on.
In this article, we’ll dive into the journey of building wealth, creating stability, and making your home truly yours. We’ll compare owning to renting, break down the costs, and share how each choice shapes your future. From property capital growth to tax benefits and the thrill of personalisation, discover the perks that homeowners have. We’ll cover the downside, too, exploring the initial costs and potential pitfalls. We’ll even compare owning and renting. Now, let’s dive into the eight benefits of owning a home.
Eight benefits for homeowners
- Property capital growth over time
- Building equity
- Enhanced borrowing power
- Financial stability and security
- Sense of ownership
- Retirement asset
- Tax benefits
- Rental yield and opportunities for property investors
1. Property Capital Growth Over Time
Property values in Australia have historically appreciated over time, providing potential for long-term capital growth. CoreLogic research shows the median dwelling value has increased 382% nationally over the 30 years to March 2022. This highlights the long-term trend of property appreciation in Australia.
Factors like limited land supply, strong rental demand, and a resilient economy indicate the Australian property market has potential for future appreciation.
Short-term fluctuations do occur, and no cycle lasts forever. Investing in Australian property offers the benefit of capital growth over the long run, making it an attractive option for building wealth. However, considering current conditions and future trends is essential before investing.
2. Building Equity
Each payment you make is a step toward owning your property outright. It’s not just a monthly bill, it’s an investment in your future. You’re building equity, a valuable asset that grows over time.
As you pay off your mortgage, the difference between the home’s value and the outstanding loan amount represents your equity. This equity can be converted into cash through refinancing or a home equity loan, offering homeowners a tangible financial advantage.
By diligently building equity, you’re also unlocking doors to enhanced borrowing power and the assurance of financial stability and security. Here are some tips to build equity in your house.
3. Enhanced Borrowing Power
Equity can be used as collateral for securing loans or lines of credit. This can lead to a higher borrowing capacity, allowing homeowners to access more favourable financing terms and larger loan amounts.
Additionally, the stability and financial responsibility demonstrated through homeownership can positively impact creditworthiness, further strengthening one’s ability to borrow at competitive rates and, therefore, serving as a valuable asset that can enhance one’s overall borrowing power.
4. Financial Stability And Security
Here is how homeowners are assured financial stability and security:
- Hedge against inflation: Property values tend to appreciate, outpacing inflation over time. This means your home becomes more valuable as the cost of living rises, building your wealth.
- Sense of community and belonging: You invest in your neighbourhood and have a direct stake in its wellbeing, fostering a sense of belonging and stability within your community.
- Potential for retirement income: Downsizing later in life can unlock the equity you’ve built in your home, providing a comfortable income stream for retirement.
It’s important to note that the housing market can vary greatly from region to region, so thorough research and financial planning are crucial before making any commitments.
5. Sense Of Ownership
One of the benefits of owning a home is the sense of ownership and control it provides. Homeowners report greater self-esteem, a higher quality of life, and feeling more in control of their lives than renters. It provides both practical and emotional benefits that give homeowners a sense of pride, accomplishment, stability, security, and community membership.
Among the key factors contributing to a homeowner’s sense of ownership and control are the ability to customise one’s living space to one’s unique lifestyle and greater privacy. Also, you invest in your neighbourhood and have a direct stake in its wellbeing, fostering a sense of belonging and stability within your community.
Freedom For Customisation And Personalisation
Homeowners can arrange their living space to reflect their lifestyles and preferences. This is not only limited to interior design but also extends to the potential for home renovations and improvements. Whether creating a personalised home office or a custom entertainment area, or implementing sustainable living features, homeowners have the creative liberty to make their living space their own.
This level of personalisation is a huge advantage of homeownership, as it creates a strong sense of pride and satisfaction in one’s living environment, ultimately contributing to a higher quality of life and emotional wellbeing.
Whether it’s a stand-alone house or an apartment, owning a home provides greater physical and digital privacy than shared living arrangements. Shared walls act as sound barriers, muffling external noise for a more peaceful living environment. Regardless of size, private backyards become personal spaces for solitude and intimate gatherings.
Homeowners also have the freedom to implement security measures, contributing to peace of mind and secure living space.
6. Retirement Asset
A home can be a valuable retirement asset with many benefits. Home equity growth over time provides options like selling the property or using home equity loans.
As established above, Australian property values have historically demonstrated stable growth, making them a reliable choice for long-term investment. This makes a home a valuable retirement asset, providing stability and financial security – especially if the mortgage is paid off before retirement.
Another huge benefit of owning a home is that it is generally not subject to capital gains tax when sold and does not count as an asset when calculating pensions or payments, provided it’s your main residence and not an investment property. These exemptions are subject to certain conditions.
Furthermore, downsizing can be a strategic move for retirees looking to optimise their housing situation. Individuals can unlock equity and reduce ongoing maintenance costs by selling a larger property and purchasing a smaller one. Downsizing for retirement often allows retirees to free up funds for other investments or enjoy a more comfortable lifestyle with less financial strain.
Finally, a home can serve as an inheritance for future generations, adding a legacy component to its value.
7. Tax Benefits
In addition to the capital gains tax and pension asset test benefits for homeowners mentioned above, first-home buyers may qualify for stamp-duty exemptions or concessions, though these vary by state and come with specific eligibility requirements. For those working from home, using a dedicated space as a home office could open up opportunities for tax deductions as well.
Property investors can enjoy tax advantages by claiming deductions for mortgage interest, leveraging depreciation on investment properties, and deducting expenses related to renovations, repairs and maintenance.
Keep proper records and documentation of your expenses and consult with an accountant or tax adviser to ensure you are taking advantage of all the tax benefits available to homeowners.
8. Rental Yield and Opportunities For Property Investors
The home you buy can even be converted into an investment property, whether you want to rent a part of the house or the whole house. This provides a chance to generate rental income. Understanding rental yield is key to measuring return on investment.
Rental yield is the annual income generated from rent as a percentage of the property’s value. Generally, a 7-10% yield is considered particularly good, but remember, high yields are relative. Location and property type play a big role. Apartments usually generate higher yields than houses, and regional areas can outperform city centres.
What Are The Initial Costs Involved In Buying A Home?
When acquiring a property, it is anticipated that about 5% of the contract amount will be allocated to cover various fees, duties and charges. So, for a $1 million property, you can expect initial costs in the range of $40,000-$50,000. These costs include your stamp duty, loan application fees, transfer fees, registration fees, conveyancing costs and more.
You can use our property purchase cost calculator to find out how much the upfront cost of buying a home will be for you.
Also, be sure to check out our guide on How to Buy Your First Home, where we outline everything you need to know about the homebuying process — from saving a deposit to home loan settlement.
Disadvantages Of Owning A Home
While buying a home can offer numerous advantages, it’s important to consider the potential disadvantages as well. Some drawbacks include:
- Financial Commitment: Purchasing a home involves a major financial commitment. Mortgage payments, property taxes, insurance, and maintenance costs can be substantial and may strain your budget.
- Market Fluctuations: Real-estate markets can be unpredictable. The value of your property may fluctuate due to economic conditions, affecting your potential for profit if you decide to sell.
- Maintenance Responsibilities: Homeownership comes with maintenance responsibilities. Repairs, renovations, and general upkeep can be time-consuming and may require additional financial resources.
- Illiquidity: Real estate is considered a less liquid asset than other investments. Selling a property can take time, and the process may not be as quick or straightforward as selling other types of assets.
- Market Conditions’ Impact On Mortgage: Economic downturns or a decline in property values could lead to a situation where you owe more on your mortgage than the home is worth, known as being ‘underwater’ on your mortgage.
- Interest Rate Risks: If you have a variable-rate mortgage, changes in interest rates can affect your monthly mortgage payments, potentially increasing your financial burden.
- Transaction Costs: Buying and selling a home involves expenses, such as agent fees, legal fees and taxes. These costs can add up and affect the overall financial viability of the investment.
- Limited Flexibility: Owning a home can reduce your options, especially if you need to relocate for work or personal reasons. Selling a property can take time, and you may not be able to respond quickly to changing circumstances.
Owning Vs Renting A Home
The choice between renting and buying a home has long-term implications for your financial stability, flexibility and overall lifestyle. This table presents a comparison between the two options.
|Lower (Usually requires bond and first month’s rent)
|Higher upfront costs
|Rent payments, utility bills
|Mortgage payments, council payments. Insurance, property taxes (investment property)
|Flexibility To Relocate
|More flexibility to move and can live in areas that would otherwise be too expensive to buy
|Less flexible, as houses are not easy to sell
|Landlord is usually responsible for major repairs
|Responsible for all repairs and maintenance costs
|Less Stable (Subject to lease terms and rent increases)
|More stable with fixed-rate home loans, but if it’s a variable-rate home loan, it will be subject to market fluctuation
|No equity building
|Builds equity over time
|No asset accumulation
|Property value growth and rental income growth
By taking on a home loan, you introduce a large debt into your credit profile. Initially, this may lead to a decline in your credit score. However, with consistent and timely payments, it is typically plausible for your credit score to rebound within 3-6 months of acquiring the loan.
Looking To Get A Home Loan? We Can Help!
Ready to experience the benefits of owning your own home? At Home Loan Experts, we’re committed to making your journey to homeownership as seamless as possible. Let us simplify the home loan process for you. As experienced mortgage brokers, we shop lenders for you to find competitive rates and loan options tailored to your financial situation. Whether you’re a first-time home buyer or an investor, let us do the legwork and negotiate on your behalf.
Take the first step by filling out our free online assessment form or, calling at 1300 889 743. Your path to owning a home starts here!