The Buyer’s Real Estate Journey
As part of the many services I offer my clients, I’ve curated a wealth of resources to help realize your real estate goals. Some of the publications in my toolkit come from the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and my two favorites for buyers are the Homebuyers’ Road Map and Tips for Buyers.
In a recent CREA blog, they used the awesome information in those publications to break down the buying process to help assist buyers from pre-purchase to post-purchase. Here is an idea of what your real estate journey might look like…
Before you buy
- Find a REALTOR®. According to CREA, from helping you find a home that meets your needs and price range, to negotiating your purchase price, directing you through complex contracts, a REALTOR® can bring you peace of mind thanks to their experience and professionalism.
- Get pre-approved. You can’t start looking at houses until you know how much a mortgage lender is willing to let you borrow. Your pre-approval will be based on many factors including your current debts, household income, employment history and how long it will take you to repay the mortgage.
Buying a home
- Consider the expenses:
- How much are you putting down and where are you getting the down payment from? There are programs that allow first time buyers to withdraw up to $35,000without paying income tax, like the Home Buyers’ Plan.
- What are you willing to pay in property taxes? That figure could affect the community you focus on or the maximum you are willing to spend on the home.
- What will the home insurance payments be? Having a chat with a few insurers before looking will give you an excellent idea of how much to budget.
- How much will the home inspection cost? Many buyers include a home inspection condition in their offer and can look for qualified home inspectors at Service Alberta.
- Make your offer. This is by far the most crucial step as an offer to purchase is a legally binding agreement – it is vital to ensure that all the conditions and terms you need to get what you are expecting on the closing date are there. Do you want to have a walk-through the day before? Better include that as a term. Been pre-approved for a mortgage? Make sure that the financing condition has been selected so you make sure you get final approval. That hot tub that totally sold you on the yard? Make sure it’s not going with the sellers. All of these little details and more are the reasons having me on your side definitely pays off!
Waiting for your possession date
- Closing costs and moving expenses. Connect with the lawyer who will be representing you to get a full break-down of what to financial expect on closing day. Taxes or condo fee adjustments, title insurance and legal fees are some examples of what you might see on your legal bill.
- Moving expenses. Think about how and when you might be actually moving. Some people choose to book the moving truck for the day AFTER possession, just in case there are any delays on the actual possession date. It also provides some time to give the house a little scrub before you start moving your stuff in.
- Utilities and insurance. Reach out to all of your service providers in advance of the possession date to let them know of your move. Ensuring your have things like gas and electricity connected when you move in is vital so make sure you have it all set up ahead of time.