DECIDING TO BUY A NEW HOME
Don't rush into the decision. Deciding to buy a new home is one of the most important decisions you can make. Take your time, talk with family and friends, weigh all the pros and cons, and think it through thoroughly. That way, when you've come to the conclusion that the time is right to buy, you'll feel confident in your decision.
GET YOUR FINANCES IN ORDER
Understanding your financial position is essential when buying your home. Given the size of the investment and the long-term commitment it represents, it is very important to be realistic and not to create financial pressures that will keep you from enjoying life in your new home. Contact a mortgage broker or your bank to determine what you can afford. Shop around for the best rate and get a pre-approval in writing. Review your plans with your financial planner/accountant.
VISUALIZE YOUR DREAM HOME
Once you have established a price range, it is time to decide what type of home will best suit your lifestyle. Create a list of features that are important to you. Consider bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen, basement, outdoor space, and proximity to amenities such as schools, recreational facilities, and shopping. You may want to put this down in writing and create a needs versus wants list.
MEET WITH AND SELECT A REALTOR®
Interview a number of REALTOR's® before selecting your ideal canidate. Make sure you are dealing with someone who is organized, professional and knowledgable. A REALTOR® is a real estate professional who is a member of a local real estate board, provincial association and The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) that enforce a strict Code of Ethics. Only these professionals can call themselves REALTORS®.
SECURE A LAWYER/NOTARY
Real Estate transactions can be complicated and involved. You should secure a real estate lawyer or Notary who will make sure that all the legal processes are followed and provide confirmation that the property you purchase is free of liens, charges and work orders. If you do not have legal represention ask your REALTOR® for recommendations.
LET THE SEARCHING BEGIN
Review your goals, needs and budget with your REALTOR® in detail. Your REALTOR® will investigate all properties that meet your requirements and provide you options to review in your desired area. They'll schedule appointments to visit the properties which you are interested in seeing.
MAKING AN OFFER
Your REALTOR® will conduct a comprehensive CMA (Comprehensive Market Analysis) to determine the market value of the home you wish to purchase and will work with you to create an offer price that is appropriate. A contract of Purchase and Sale will be drafted and will contain everything from the price you are prepared to pay, to the inclusions you want (washer/dryer, big screen TV), to your ideal closing date (the date you take possession), to conditions that need to be met for the deal to go through. Once you have submitted your offer, the seller can accept it, reject it or sign back a counter offer. During these back-and-forth negotiations, both you and the seller may need to compromise in order get the deal completed.
CONDITIONS AND HOME INSPECTION
Conditions are requirements within the Agreement of Purchase and Sale that must be met for the sale to go through. In your offer, you may have included a financing condition or a condition that allows your lawyer to review the legal details of the property, or a home inspection. Once the conditions have been met, the agreement is firm, and now getting the property information to your mortgage broker or bank, and arranging for other contractual requirements is necessary.
Congratulations, you are ready to sign off on ownership. Your lawyer/Notary and REALTOR® will walk you through the paperwork needed to complete the sale. On completion (closing) day legal ownership of the property will be transferred into your name. Funds will be transfered and your lawyer/Notary will provide you with a statement of adjustment listing all costs payable such as legal fees, taxes and mortgage fees if applicable. On possession day your REALTOR® will help you coordinate the handing over of keys from the seller.
What to expect
WHAT TO EXPECT
● Home inspection fees ● Legal fees ● Property transfer tax ● Appraisal fees ● Mortgage application fees ● Land surevey fees ● GST on new homes ● Closing adjustments on property tax, utilities and strata fees ● Mortgage life insurance ● Fire and Liability insurance ● Moving fees ● Utility hook ups ● Canada Post change of address fees ● REALTOR® commission fees if applicable
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