Warning: long post! Hi folks, hoping to get some of your wisdom as friends and family don't exactly have much knowledge to share other than what NOT to do when it comes to money and property(all are a financial mess with large personal debts and no assets). I'm in my thirties and it took me a long time to break away from the bad money habits I grew up with, and slogged through low-paying jobs during my twenties before making a bit more improvement income-wise, so this is sad, but this is where I am at right now: $51k in cash $33k in stocks(index funds) no debts (HECS also gone by now) no property single no kids, no pets (not a popular thing to admit but I just never could stand them just never had a desire to be a parent or pet owner ever - this will not change in future, and I will not date or marry anyone who does not feel the same) currently renting 1BR flat in Melbourne within walking distance to work in the CBD for $360 per week have been in the same flat for the last year - I like it and the building it's in quite a lot! I love Melbourne, have already experienced living in other states and overseas, but this has always been home for me - I don't want to be away from it anymore; the only way I would move again is if I got a job offer from the USA paying double what I earn now(unlikely!!) was extended in my current job contract for 12 months (unlikely to be made full-time at the end though) have a monthly take-home pay of $5.5k per month, of which I save between $2k to $2.5k every month likely to find another contract after current one ends paying similar amount(I actively seek out offers and network quite regularly even while still in a job to be doubly sure) I know there is massive doom and gloom to come due to oversupply of units in Melbourne, however, the thought of buying a 1BR flat popped up when the building I currently rent in advertised one for sale at $310k. I attended the inspection and found out the owner was eager to just move on with their life overseas and would consider offers of $300k. This had me thinking that if I sold some stocks, I could meet the 20% deposit. However, I'm apprehensive and got stuck in analysis paralysis for the following reasons: oversupply of units according to the daily news - I wonder if some older style 1BR flats within 10km of the Melbourne CBD will start dropping even lower to $250k to $270k over the next 2 years strata fees - don't want to be duped into buying a unit that seems cheap but then has skyrocketing strata fees every year or keep gouging for "special" levies for no good reason googling for more info lead me to various articles and forums saying I should buy house and land - I don't really want to live in a house though, it's just too much space for someone who is single and leans toward a minimalist style, I don't want the upkeep of a yard or a car the only houses I can afford are at least 40km away from work though, and I've rented before in places that required long commutes and a car and really hated it(am car-free now and loving it) I've heard it was a bad idea to sell index funds just to scrounge together the deposit as the index funds are growing and paying dividends got very conflicting advice from 2 acquaintances with links to mortgage brokers - one said I should dive onto the property ladder ASAP and get the 1BR flat but I may not get approved for a loan, and the other said I should aim for a bigger mortgage of $400k-$500k and buy a 2BR flat or 2BR townhouse around Reservoir or further up and just suck up the LMI!! I am considering saving up for a few more months to be able to afford a buyer's agent to help me out, but I don't know if there are any that would even fart in my general direction since my budget is so low($300k to $400k) What would you do in my shoes?? Questions: Wait a while longer before buying to save more cash? Or dive in sooner rather than later?? Avoid units altogether and buy a house & land package for around $350k around Mernda? Then suck it up living there for 6 months to get FHB concessions then rent it out afterwards while I go back to renting a flat near the city? Get a 2BR flat/townhouse and get a lodger for the 2nd room? Some other posts I stumbled upon made a point about how getting an offset mortgage and HELOC could help me leverage purchase of more index funds to help with my investment goals - has anyone done this? Do buyer's agents work with people with such low budgets like mine? I'm keen to buy my first property and have the advantage of an offset account and a line of credit for investing in index funds, but don't want to mess this up as government FHB concessions and grants can only be given once in a lifetime. Looking forward to your thoughts!