Tips on buying and
financing real estate
What additional fees or costs can be expected when buying a home?
It is important to not underestimate the additional costs and fees associated with buying a home. Included in these costs are ~3,5% buyer taxes, 1,1% Property Registration Fee, 1,2% Loan fees, 1-3% Notary & Legal fees.
These percentages are based on the purchase price. Additionally, it is also to pay a broker fee (~3% including 20% VAT) as well as administrative fees, home appraisal fees, as well as partial payment surcharges or loan commitment interest. Are there additional closing costs from Fimobilia? For our services to you, you do not incur any additional expenses. Upon the successful closing of a loan, we will receive an administrative fee from the lender.
What additional loan expenses can be expected?
The additional loan expenses are costs that will be required to pay at the closing of the loan. In general these are one-time costs. In the offer that you will receive from our partner bank / lender, you will see all the additional expenses associated with the loan.
Below are a list of various additional expenses to be aware of:
1. Loan processing fee
2. Property registration fee
3. Home appraisal fees
4. Bank guarantee fee
5. Mortgage deed land registration fee
6. Notary fee
7. Land registration fees (on-going)
8. Credit report fee
9. Online verification fee
10. Down payment fee
11. Administrative fee
12. Loan account service fee (on-going)
13. Term life insurance (on-going)
How much equity (down payment) do you need for a home loan?
In principle, it is possible to purchase a property without equity. This is called a full financing and means that the loan covers the entire cost. However, such residential loans are considered by banks to be riskier, which is why higher interest payments are usually due. In addition, the banks base the lending on the purchase price or the market value – the so-called incidental purchase costs are often not considered and accordingly have to be paid additionally.
The ancillary costs consist of the lawyer’s or notary’s fees and land register fees, as well as a possible commission for the broker and the real estate transfer tax. So if you want to buy a house for 200,000 euros, you should expect additional costs of around 19,000 euros, which you usually cannot finance as part of the real-estate loan.
It therefore makes sense to cover the ancillary costs of a home loan through equity. In this way you can reduce interest at the bank because there is less risk. A borrower whose creditworthiness is only rated as “sufficient” due to a lack of equity, for example, must expect higher interest rate premiums of 0.25 to 1 percentage point.
With a purchase price of 200,000 euros and a term of 20 or 30 years, this surcharge results in additional interest costs of several thousand euros. In addition, you should calculate full-financing thoroughly and rather conservatively, especially in times of low interest rates. After the end of the fixed-interest period, the interest level can change significantly, which can lead to problems with the repayment of the follow-up financing if the calculation is too tight.
Tip: We advise our customers to have an equity ratio of at least 20 percent. As a result, your interest rate markup by banks is lower. Another advantage is the shortened repayment period and the resulting reduced interest burden.
What counts as equity?
Equity is basically all assets that can be used to reduce the loan amount or as a down payment / security. These assets include savings accounts on building societies, savings accounts, securities, gold coins or even real estate.
What is included in a private household expenses?
Calculating income and expenses is all well and good, but what should be taken into account? On the one hand, it should include the cost of living and, on the other hand, it should also include fixed costs that are incurred every month. Here’s an overview of how ensure that you don’t miss anything:
Living expenses are all expenses that you inevitably have in everyday life. These are essentially the following:
Housing costs (rent, accommodation for frequent business trips, etc.)
Health care (medicines, care costs, etc.)
Telecommunications (telephone, television, internet, radio license fees, etc.)
Costs for public transport or vehicle maintenance
Apart from that, of course, leisure activities also cause certain expenses, as do animal care, donations, membership fees and other items that are not absolutely necessary.
How can you generally calculate the monthly expenses and fixed costs?
The fixed costs include all amounts that are debited each month. Such ongoing expenses are usually documented by account statements. The fixed costs include the expenses already mentioned above:
Rent + operating costs
Power / Utilities
Telephone and internet connection
Broadcasting Fees and TV Providers
Insurance (life, household, supplementary, car insurance, etc.)
Subscriptions (music and streaming services, journals/magazines etc.)
If applicable, maintenance payments for children (alimony)
Don’t forget the monthly installments for existing loans or leasing contracts, provided these are not replaced with the new financing.
As a rule, however, this is not enough and there are other items that vary from case to case. These do not necessarily have to be fixed costs, but these cost factors should definitely not be ignored. Here is just a small selection:
school or kindergarten fees
vacations and travel expenses
clothing and leisure costs
culture & hobbies
It is important that you get an overview of your expenses. As you can see: A list of the fixed costs alone does not give a complete overall picture. So add all other expenses that are made more or less regularly to the fixed costs.
Tip: We generally recommend calculating a safety buffer. For example, calculate “only” the acquisition costs for a new washing machine, a children’s room, etc. over 12 months and plan this additional burden firmly.
So you are prepared despite credit installments if the washing machine gives up the ghost, the laptop accidentally falls off the table or you need craftsmen.
KSV report and credit check: Creditworthiness in Austria.
he credit check can have a major impact on personal future planning. So it is not surprising that many people would like to know their current creditworthiness.
Free credit check:The KSV self-assessment “Der Kreditschutzverband”, founded in 1870 (KSV1870), is an important address in Austria when it comes to creditworthiness-related information. The company collects personal economic data on an ongoing basis. The KSV 1870 also receives these from affiliated banks and then forwards them to banks on request. This can mean, for example, that the bank finds out whether there are still open or even rejected credit relationships. According to the General Data Protection Regulation, you have the right to view your data once a year free of charge. You can assert this right at all relevant credit agencies or creditworthiness databases. This not only includes KSV 1870, but also companies such as CRIF or Bisnode.
Tip: It is highly recommended to take advantage of this offer, as this will make you aware of incorrect data and you can ensure that it is deleted. For example, if a loan that you have already paid off is still listed, you can request that this entry be deleted. However, it can take up to 8 weeks for the application to actually be implemented.
Which repayment rate should I choose?
The ideal repayment rate depends on your goal of being debt-free. In the best case, the real estate loan should be paid off by the time you retire. Note that at current interest rates, it will take you about 48 years to repay a loan with an initial principal of 1 percent. With an initial repayment of 2 percent, however, the term is reduced by more than 15 years. It is best to adapt your repayment to the level of interest rates and your age. As a rule, you also have the option of repaying within the fixed-interest period. However, the lending banks usually charge a penalty.
Home Loan Debt restructuring - is it worth it?
If the fixed interest rate on a home loan has expired and a remaining debt still has to be paid, the old loan agreement is usually continued with the previous bank – on new terms. This procedure is called prolongation. On this occasion, many borrowers miss the opportunity to obtain offers from other providers for a continuation of the debt financing. The prolongation offer is not always the cheapest – on the other hand, if you are looking for offers for debt refinancing, you can make comparisons. The position of the borrower is usually even better after a home loan that has been repaid without any problems: he appears to the new bank as a reliable and solvent partner. For the borrower, more security for the bank means that he can negotiate better conditions for the mortgage re-finance. Re-financing an existing mortgage is often cheaper than continuing the existing loan with the previous lender. The certification costs and land register fees due for the replacement of the security are usually more than offset
Mortgage refinancing before the fixed interest rate expires is usually unattractive. Because then any prepayment penalty (penalty) is due from the previous lender, who cancels the interest rate advantages through the better offer. However, follow-up financing can also be planned in advance, even if the current contract is still valid for one year. The new contract then comes into effect at the current conditions as soon as the fixed interest rate has expired with the previous lender.
Despite the numerous advantages, many borrowers shy away from debt restructuring because it is complicated to compare new offers from different financial institutions. Fimobilia relieves borrowers of the search for cheap follow-up financing and analyzes the market according to the specifications of our customers.
What documents does the bank need?
As a rule, the lending institution requires the salary confirmation from the employer or the last three payslips for employees. The self-employed need a current income tax return or the final income/exemption statement. If necessary, you should also provide proof of additional income (e.g. renting).
Tip: Normally, banks also require a so-called budget (a comparison of regular income and expenses) as well as a valid, official photo ID. In the case of a mortgage refinancing or debt restructuring, banks also need the confirmation of the remaining debt of your existing contract.
When can I cancel my home loan?
Attention: In Austria, you only have the right to withdraw from home loan 2 working days after submitting the signed contract declaration. The withdrawal period only begins when the consumer (borrower) has received the ESIS information sheet and the instruction on the right of withdrawal, but ends no later than one month after the conclusion of the contract. You should therefore clarify any ambiguities in advance before you take out a home loan. We at Fimobilia are happy to help you with this.
Under certain conditions, you can also repay your home loan early and thus end it, for example if you want to reschedule your debt or if you have unexpectedly gained equity in the event of an inheritance: Repayment of home loans with variable interest rates is possible at any time. During the fixed interest rate period, banks usually demand a penalty for early repayment.
When is a home loan rejected?
Banks will only grant home loans if you have a good credit rating, i.e. if you prove to be creditworthy. This is done via proof of regular income and/or other collateral such as real estate or savings. However, credit institutions also collect information about borrowers themselves and usually access data from external providers, such as the Credit Protection Association of 1870, for the so-called credit check. If you do not meet certain requirements, the bank will reject your home loan.
When is the first instalment due?
As a rule, you start with the repayment (repayment) of a home loan in monthly installments after the conclusion of the contract, or at the latest in the following month. However, there is also the possibility of interim financing of construction projects via a housing construction account, which is converted into a housing loan at the end of the term. Until then, there are usually no installments. We will be happy to inform you about all the possibilities of real estate financing.
How high are the interest rates?
Most credit institutions use the 3-month EURIBOR as the base value for the amount of interest and charge an interest surcharge (“margin”) on this reference value. The amount of the mark-up depends on the creditworthiness of the borrower.
Tip: The difference in interest rates between borrowers with good and sufficient creditworthiness can amount to between 0.25 and one percentage point, according to a study by the Chamber of Labour (information PDF) https://media.arbeiterkammer.at/PDF/Wohnkredite_Vergleich.pdf.