researched information and a reference guide for the purchase of your property with Homula Professionals

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Real Estate Buyers Guide

When you make that choice to buy real estate, whether you are a first-time buyer or looking to move somewhere new, it is always a time of mixed feelings. It is of course exciting, it is the biggest purchase of our lives in all probability and represents a new start, but for most of it is also a little bit frightening, mainly because it is the biggest purchase of our lives!

Understanding the buying process can help make things more manageable for new home buyers, and make sure that even those who have purchased before do not forget anything. To help with that we have put together a comprehensive real estate buyers guide that will take you through the steps you need to take, and how to avoid any costly mistakes along the way.

Finance

For new home buyers especially, finding out what kind of mortgage you qualify for before beginning that property search is a critical step in the process. Nothing is more disappointing that finding the home of your dreams and then being unable to get the financing for it, and yet that is what happens to many people. Understanding how much you can borrow first by seeking pre-approval for finance keeps you looking at properties you know you can afford.

The first thing to consider is the down payment, mortgages often require a minimum of 20%, but that does vary, and you can pay more than the minimum of course. The temptation might be to put all the money you have saved down to lower the mortgage costs, but this is not really the best way to go. During the purchase process, you will have other costs to meet, for first time buyers you may need to furnish your new home, and you should always keep a reserve for emergencies as well. Like anything, it is a balancing act.

Once you have a good idea of the down payment you are prepared to put down, contact your mortgage broker about getting qualified for a loan. Homula has a comprehensive database of the best mortgage brokers in your area to help you quickly find the help you need.

Based on the personal financial information provided, the mortgage broker will be able to find the right kind of mortgage for you, and offer a pre-approved mortgage for a specific value along with a guaranteed interest rate for that loan valid for a set period of time.

With a pre-approved mortgage in hand, you can then search for your perfect home and negotiate your deal with confidence, knowing the funds are there when you need them.

Choosing a home

There are two critical parts of the process when you buy real estate, one is finance as we have discussed, that is paying for the home, and the other is finding the perfect home for you. We are going to look at that journey of choosing a home, and just how you find that special place you want to make yours.

At any point in time there are thousands of homes on the market, and finding the one that suits you best is always a challenge. There are some ways to make it easier though, some you can do yourself, and others that we at Homula can provide for you as part of our comprehensive service.

Before you begin the search for your new home, make a list of the things you need in your new home, and another list of the things you want. Things you need are the features of the property you will not compromise on, for instance cost, the number of bedrooms needed or the location near to schools if you have children. The list of wants would be things you would like, but can compromise on if needed. Not only will the two lists give you a clear guide when deciding between properties, but it also gives you a great ‘shopping list’ to narrow down the many available properties to a list that are suitable for you.

Homula offers the most comprehensive property search service in Canada, and with your list of requirements will help you quickly identify the properties that best suit your needs.

Making an Offer

Once you have found that perfect home through Homula, the time has come to negotiate a deal to buy that property. Good real estate agents are also experienced negotiators, they usually know how flexible any seller is prepared to be, so listen to their guidance, but always remember they are paid by the seller, so also be prepared. Find out how long the property has been on the market, and how much similar properties in the area have actually sold for if possible.

Make your offer based on your own research and the agent’s guidance, and before you know it, the offer will be accepted! That’s a time of elation, you got the home you wanted, but for new home owners, it can also see a bit of panic, you just became a home owner! With an offer accepted, a deposit is made and you will usually be asked to sign a conditional offer, to provide room for any loose ends to be tied up before you as a buyer proceed. If the property is not a new home, but a resale home, always get a proper home inspection before making the offer final, so you can see if there are any potentially costly problems that will need addressing. Once all loose ends are agreed, then you can make your offer ‘firm and binding’, and complete the deal.

Closing the deal

What often comes as a shock to first time buyers is the closing costs, that add a significant expense to the overall real estate buying process. With legal fees, title insurance, land transfer tax, disbursements and insurance policies just some of the possible charges you may encounter. If the property is a resale home, you can expect to add around 2% to the original purchase price, for a brand-new property, that could be as high as 2 ½ %. Make sure you are aware of the charges before the offer is signed and be prepared for the costs involved.

Finally, after all that, you can take possession of your new home and enjoy the start of a new chapter in your life. Whether you are an old hand or a first-time buyer, buying a home can be daunting, but with our real estate buyers guide, we hope you will be prepared, informed and confident throughout the process.