Do some field work to make sure the suburb's right for you. Walk around the area you're thinking of buying in. Grab a coffee, or a meal at the local pub.
Pretend you're already living there and see if distances are what they seem, and atmosphere is living up to expectations.
Cooler periods in the housing market can be windows of opportunity, so it's worth keeping an eye on interest rate and market trends. Some locations are hitting the bottom of a pricing cycle, so there are bargains to be had. If you're not ready yet, use Spring to prepare to buy in the quieter months of the year, when there may be less competition for the house of your dreams.