A Beginner’s Guide to Property Research Tools

December 15, 2021
property research tools

Lately, the question of when to buy a house has been ubiquitous. While having property to call our own has long been an Australian dream, the high housing prices have only made it harder to achieve. Many of us are missing out on a crucial step too—knowing your property research tools.

The real estate market is roaring, only to leave average wages in the dust. Many young Australians are struggling to get their foot on the property ladder, now more than ever. But this doesn’t mean it’s impossible, it just means you have to be smart about your property decisions.

And by smart, we mean well-researched. The term alone seem daunting, as images of graphs and statistics pop up. But if you research the property market properly, you’ll find that it starts with learning what you want first. What is it that you’re looking for, and what does that market look like? Each property-seeker is different, so take your time assessing your lifestyle and what it looks like 5 to 10 years down the road.

To get your started on researching the property market, here are our pro property research tools that might give you an answer to your question, “should I buy property now?”

Know what you want

how to do property research south yarra apartment for sale
Melbourne Apartment for Sale on Soho (sold) @ 1/14 Arnold Street, South Yarra, VIC, 3141, Australia

Sounds simple but it’s harder than you think! Location is probably the first on the list of priorities so get out there and get exposure to different neighbourhoods. The last thing you want is to change your mind halfway through the process—a pitfall experienced by many first-home buyers.

We cover several of these important questions in our article on home buying tips, but here are a few questions to point you in the right direction:

  • Is this the right suburb for me? Does it suit my lifestyle? Or am I changing my lifestyle to suit the suburb?
  • How much space do I need? 
  • Where do I intend on living for the coming years? 
  • Are there infrastructure or development plans happening in this suburb’s future?
  • What are my deal-breakers or must-haves? 
  • Am I more urban or rural?
  • Do I rely on a car or public transport?

Once you narrow down your suburb choices, it’ll be easier to find the right home for you. Use Soho to locate your preferred neighbourhoods and save them. You’ll then get alerts on your “interested areas” so you don’t miss an opportunity on a new home that comes on the market. 

Master the Basics: While there are many aspects to house pricing, understanding the median price is foundational. Delve deeper into the topic with our in-depth article on What Does Median House Price Mean?.

Understand Your Local Property Market

how to do property research melbourne apartment for sale
Melbourne Apartment for Sale on Soho @ 20/377 Little Collins Street, Melbourne, VIC, 3000, Australia

Now that you’ve identified the suburbs you want to live in, you can concentrate your efforts on learning about their profiles. Tools like BuyersBuyers’ report tool Where to Buy give you a personalised analysis with the best suburbs to buy in, based on your individual criteria. 

Property research resources like CoreLogic can give you insight into property prices, what’s available and the demographic the suburb is made up of. They can also give you an idea of how long a property takes to sell and what the median price points for apartments and houses are. 

Property Update is a good source of information. Data is analysed and you’re offered a report on the changes and market trends in big cities. 

When you’re doing research on your suburb, aside from looking solely at housing trends over the years, check out plans the neighbourhood has. Will there be more job opportunities or universities? A growing arts district is a good indicator of a up and coming neighbourhood. 

Keep Up with Property Market Trends

The easiest way to stay on top of the market is to give yourself access—sign up for newsletters, follow TikTok accounts and subscribe to magazines that offer digestible, reliable real estate content. You might also want to set up Google alerts to track any worthy news about your interested areas. 

Knowing what to expect in the market gives you a head start in finding the right property. You especially want to be in the know about your desired suburbs but domestic and international news is important too. 

Speak to the experts

how to do property research southbank apartment for sale
Melbourne Apartment for Sale on Soho @ 1109/22 Dorcas Street, Southbank, VIC, 3006, Australia

The experts we’re talking about are real estate agents. Even with all the data and advice online, the most efficient way to find out if you should buy property now, is through these professionals. 

A good agent will understand the numbers, history and also be tuned into future developments. They’ll have their ear to the ground in terms of what’s really happening behind the scenes—a super handy tool!

Pay attention to the details

Every property is different. You can have two homes right next to each other with a completely different value. The trick is to inspect the small things. Look for fittings, fixtures, and amenities that can increase or decrease the worth of the property. Features like good flooring, stainless steel appliances and swimming pools can add value to a property.

Keep yourself updated with useful tips like these by getting registered on Soho. Not only are we finding you your dream home, but we’re also helping you save for it and decorate it! So don’t forget to swipe on your property matches so we can get you there faster.

Soho takes the hassle out of finding your next home. Whether renting, buying or investing, set up your match profile and we'll send you live property matches as they come on the market. Download the Soho app and never miss an agent's message, inspection or new listing. Agents list for free.
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Our AI match engine will match you with over 150,000+ properties and you can swipe away or shortlist easily. Making your home buying journey faster and easier.