Thinking of purchasing a Home? Here are some Tips for Buyers to get you started.
Did you know there are 3-stages to buying a home and the process starts well before you actually purchase? The stages are Planning, Viewing & Offering. To help you move forward on a purchase, I have put together these tips.
1. Secure A Mortgage Pre-Approval
Unequivocally, the first step in buying a home. Contact your bank or mortgage broker to apply for a pre-approval. This will help you get an understanding of what you can afford and how much a lender will approve you for. Most pre-approvals will lock you in at a current interest rate [for up to 120 days] regardless if rates increase.
Also, when you finally make an offer on a house, you will likely only have 5 banking days to fulfill your finance condition. Having a pre-approval ensures all your documentation needed is in place for a Mortgage Commitment.
- Ask your mortgage specialist about a Pre-Approval Letter to pass on to Sellers when you make an offer on a house. This states that you have a pre-approval in place, and that you are ready to move forward with a purchase.
- There is no obligation on your part with a pre-approval.
- A pre-approval may mean deal with existing debt first, before purchasing.
2. Ask About First-Time Home Buyer Incentives
There are First-Time Home Buyer Incentives offered by the Federal Government. Speak to your mortgage specialist about this. Or check out the following links:
- Home Buyer’s Plan – Allows first-time homebuyers to withdraw funds from their Retirement Savings Plan (RSP) to use towards their first home.
- Home Buyer’s Amount – A $5000 non-refundable income tax credit that can be applied to certain qualifying homes.
- First-Time Home Buyer Incentive – Enables first-time homebuyers to reduce their monthly mortgage payment without increasing their down payment. Borrowers who meet the criteria can apply for a 5% or 10% shared equity mortgage with the Government of Canada.
- Land Transfer Tax Rebate –
A rebate available to help first-time homebuyers offset the cost of this tax.
3. Hire An Experienced Realtor®
You will need the expertise of a committed and experienced Realtor® who has strong negotiating skills. They must make you a priority and be able to guide you through the complexity of the buying transaction.
- In 2019 Patricia had the honour of being featured in Top Agent Magazine.
- Patricia sits within the TOP 2% of all RE/MAX agents in Ontario and is recipient of the prestigious RE/MAX Hall of Fame award.
4. Set up A New Listing Alert
Once you have a Realtor® on board, have them set you up with a Property Portal so all new listing that meet your criteria are automatically emailed to you. This way you won’t miss out on any new listings as they hit MLS.
5. Start House Hunting
You will now be able to start viewing homes. The best way to educate yourself on the current market is to view houses first-hand. On average for my buyers, it takes 16 viewings before they successfully buy a home.
6. Know The Offer Documents
You can go over all buyer and offer documents in advance to ensure you have a solid understanding of the terms, clauses and conditions. Your Realtor® should take the time to review these with you in great detail.
7. Know Location, Location, Location
Your Realtor® should educate you on various neighbourhoods and specific locations. Property prices are always in a state of adjustments as market conditions, inflation, buying trends, interest rates and local factors are always changing and affecting the property’s value. Make sure you discuss the potential re-sale value of your house with your Realtor® in order to protect your investment. Re-sale is a vital component when purchasing especially for military relocations when a Posting Msg is likely in 4 years.
8. Speak to a Certified Home Inspector
Most likely you will be using a Home Inspector for your purchase so talk to them ahead of time and get a feel for what a typical home inspection involves. You, along with your Realtor®, will be present for the inspection.