1. Preparing to buy

Knowing where to start can be challenging and you most likely have many questions. We’ve compiled a list of points to make it easy to get you started, from estimating how much you can afford to spend on a property, to understanding any government grants or schemes that you might be able to access.

  • How much can I borrow? Our borrowing calculators will help you estimate how much you can borrow by understanding what you can afford to pay on loan repayments each month. This will be determined by understanding your income, expenses and any other loans you may have.
  • How much will I need for my deposit? We normally require a deposit of at least 20% of the property value, after upfront buying costs and government fees. But there are other ways you can buy a property with less than 20% deposit. These are outlined below.
  • What if I have less than 20% of my property’s value in savings? You could be able to purchase a property with as little as 5% deposit if you take out Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI) or if you are eligible for one or more of the government grants or schemes. Details of these are below.
  • Do I need Lenders Mortgage Insurance? Understand whether you will need Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI) and how it can help you get into your dream home faster.
  • Am I eligible for the Home Guarantee Scheme or any other types of government assistance? There are a range of different government grants or schemes that you may be eligible for to help you purchase your new home sooner. Learn about how the Home Guarantee Scheme could help you buy your first home with a smaller deposit. 
  • Which suburbs are right for me? Find out what different properties are worth and the value of properties across different suburbs over time with our free Property Insights Report, opens in new window.

2. Conditional approval

A conditional approval means NAB has agreed in principal to lend you a certain amount of money based on the information you’ve provided but hasn’t proceeded to full or final approval. This will help you to have the confidence to make an offer when the right property comes along.

Your conditional approval is valid for 90 days and may be renewed if you need more time.

Now, get started with your application in whichever way best suits you:

  • Apply online it can take around 20 minutes and one of our bankers will be in touch with you to follow up
  • Request an appointment with a banker, either in branch, over the phone or with a mobile banker
  • Call us to speak to a banker now on 13 78 79

Learn more about conditional approval here.

3. Buying your property

Once you’ve obtained conditional approval, you'll be ready to make an offer when the right property comes along.

Here are the next steps if your offer is accepted by the vendor/seller:

  • You should engage a solicitor or a conveyancer to help you with the paperwork relating to the purchase.
  • You’ll be asked to complete an Offer & Acceptance form or a Contract of Sale – depending on what state your property is located.
  • You’ll need to pay your deposit using a bank cheque or bank transfer.
  • Now is a critical time to be arranging your home insurance once you’ve paid a deposit, as you now have a financial interest in the property. Arrange a quote for home insurance.

4. Finalising your application and documents

Now that you’ve found your dream property and your offer has been accepted, you’ll need to obtain full approval and finalise your loan details with your banker. This stage is often referred to as unconditional approval.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • We’ll ask you a number of questions, and ask for supporting documents to confirm the information you provided to us to gain conditional approval.
  • We’ll complete a valuation on the property you’ve purchased.
  • Your banker will help you choose the right type of loan to meet your needs whether you want the certainty of a fixed rate loan or the flexibility to make additional payments with a variable rate loan.
  • Once your loan application and documents have been submitted we’ll review and conduct the checks we need to do at our end, before we provide unconditional approval and your home loan offer documents.
  • Your solicitor or conveyancer will help you complete any transfer forms such as stamp duty.
  • Next, it’s time to review the details in your loan documents to make sure everything is in order before accepting them and returning them to your banker.
  • Don’t forget to make sure you’ve organised home insurance, as your settlement could be delayed if you haven’t organised this.

5. Settlement and moving in

After settlement, the property officially becomes yours and the home buying process is complete!

Before settlement occurs, it’s important that you:

  • Arrange a pre-settlement inspection with the seller’s real estate agent.
  • Have enough money in your nominated NAB transaction account 48 hours before the settlement date – your solicitor will confirm how much you’ll need.
  • Arrange for things like gas, electricity and internet to be connected at your new property for the day you move in, and remember to change your postal address and redirect your mail.

We’ll arrange a day, time and place for settlement with your solicitor or conveyancer and they will let you know as soon as settlement is completed.

  • Now you can pick up your keys from the vendor’s real estate agent and move in!
  • Here’s some more detailed information to help you understand and prepare for settlement day.


Now set up your loan to make sure it’s easy to manage and that you’re getting the most out of it.

Ready to purchase your home?

Talk to our home loan experts today.

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Contact us for home loan related queries

This is how you can get in touch.

Start a conversation with a banker

  1. Log into either NAB Internet Banking or the NAB app.
  2. Tap on the message icon.
  3. Type ‘speak to a person’ in the conversation window.

Call us

Speak to a home loan expert about a new or existing home loan.

Monday to Friday, 8:00am to 7:00pm (AEST/AEDT)
Saturday to Sunday, 9:00am to 6:00pm (AEST/AEDT)

13 78 79

Book an appointment

Make an appointment to see us at your nearest branch, ask a mobile banker to come to you or ask us to call you back.

Terms and Conditions

The information contained in this article is intended to be of a general nature only. It has been prepared without taking into account any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, NAB recommends that you consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances. NAB recommends that you seek independent legal, financial and taxation advice before acting on any information in this article.