HomeStart - Helping first home buyers get started

Posted on September 9, 2013

It’s not uncommon to hear builders say that they don’t just build houses, but homes. So when HomeStart Executive Manager Sue Bailey says that “it’s not just about selling houses but also about providing homes for people to live in” she has her eye on the bigger picture.

A former general manager of HomeStart Ms Bailey recently returned to the first- homebuyer specialist builder, which she co-founded 25 years ago, having spent the past decade providing corporate counselling services to the building industry and running her own furniture and home wares stores.

She is “absolutely passionate” about giving people the opportunity to own a home , which she said not only provided people with a pathway to financial security, but also a sense of stability and security. “ I think it’s good for families – it give people stability, they take pride in the fact that they’re working and they’ve got something to show for it, the children can grow up with peers in the same street” she explained

“having a home of our own is what a lot of people aspire to because they feel good about themselves, which means we’ve got a better society, which I’m very happy to be a part of”

Many of HomeStart’s clients were people who “don’t necessarily know they’re in the market place, don’t know they can buy a home of their own”, Ms Bailey said. “Virtually anybody can get into a home of their own, they just need to know how to do it and also how to do it properly” she said.

“I’m very big on not wanting people to over commit; I’d rather leave a little buffer in there for harder times and make sure they tailor the house they choose for what their budget is.“And also understanding that most people stay in their first home for five to seven years and then they’ll move on to something else, so don’t try to get everything in the first home – do it a step at a time”

The company endeavours to provide a “one stop shop” to demystify what Ms Bailey acknowledged could be “a fairly scary process” and “a big step in to the unknown” for first-time buyers.

Throughout her time in the industry, Ms Bailey has sat on numerous committees and boards, serving as both vice-president and president of the Housing Industry Association of WA and being a founding member of the National Association of women in construction in WA.

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