August 21, 2017 Laura Osti2 mins

It’s not just the deposit you’ll need to cover when you buy a home. There’s a bunch of other fees and charges – including stamp duty – which get bundled into the costs you need to pay, upfront. We break down everything so there’re no costly surprises.


You’re buying a $700,000 home in Melbourne. Here are the upfront costs (or you can skip the math and just use a calculator).


The deposit.

Most lenders will ask for at least 5% of the value of the property, which in this case would be $35,000. But, anything less than a 20% deposit, and you’ll be charged Lenders’ Mortgage Insurance (see below). Tic:Toc won’t accept anything less than a 20% deposit, which in this scenario is $140,000.

Lenders’ Mortgage Insurance (LMI).

This is a one-off insurance payment, which protects the lender in case you can’t make your repayments. A smaller deposit means your lender needs to give you more money, so there is a cost associated. Although an additional cost to the lending process, it can be a great mechanism to get purchasers into a home quickly without having to save the 20% deposit. With Tic:Toc, you only need a 10% deposit or equity (for investment and interest only loans you’ll need at least 15%) to be eligible for a home loan.

Stamp duty.

This is a State Government tax based on the purchase price of the property. Each state and territory has different rules and calculations, and it’s unavoidable. Bah humbug. For your $700,000 established home in Victoria, your stamp duty will be around $37,000.


Cost of Stamp Duty, based on a $700,000 existing property to live in.

Australian Capital Territory


New South Wales


Northern Territory




South Australia






Western Australia


This data is current as at 1 August, 2017.


Registration of Mortgage and title transfer.

This is the cost of registering the land title with your State Government and transferring to your name, and unfortunately it’s mandatory. In Victoria, together these fees will cost you around $1,800.



Cost of registration of Mortgage and Title transfer, based on a $700,000 existing property to live in.

Australian Capital Territory


New South Wales


Northern Territory




South Australia






Western Australia


This data is current as at 21 August, 2017.


Loan application/processing/settlement fee.

These are the fees your lender will charge for applying and settling a home loan with them. It covers all the work the humans do, like filling out paperwork and meeting you for a loan interview. And it can cost you around the $800 mark. Tic:Toc doesn’t charge this. Zip, nada, zilch. We absorb this fee because we believe that, contrary to popular belief, applying for a home loan should be uncomplicated and automated.

Valuation fee.

This is a fee your lender will charge you to arrange an independent valuer to assess the dollar value of the property you’re planning to buy, based on the current market. A property value will change over time, so you may get hit with this every time you ask for a valuation. With many thanks to the Tic:Toc robot, we have this process automated so you don’t have to pay a thing. And it gets updated in real-time, every day, so anytime you apply it will always be current. Kapow.

Conveyancer fees.

Your conveyancer will charge you to prepare your loan documents (such as the contract of sale and memorandum of transfer) and to liaise with your lender and existing property owner on your behalf. It’s in your best interest to appoint someone to ensure you’re protected and legally safe. But it’s not legally required. Costs can vary based on the complexity of the loan your taking out, but it’s around the $1000 mark. And generally worth every cent.


So, what’s the damage?

With Tic:Toc, this is how much you’ll need upfront to buy your $700,000 established home in Victoria:

Deposit   $140,000
Stamp duty   $37,000
Mortgage title and transfer           $1,800
Conveyancer   $1000




Already a home owner?

If you’re looking at buying an additional property and you have home equity, you may be able to use this towards your upfront costs. 


If you want to double check your figures, you can use an upfront cost calculator to quickly find out what sort of costs you'll need to pay.