Buyers

Step 1: Deciding to Buy

To buy a home, you need to be prepared and we are here to help you. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Define your needs and wants – make a list of the things you simply can’t live without, like the number of bedrooms and bathrooms your family needs, proximity to schools and work, or storage needs. Then list some nice-to-haves: maybe a pool or deck, finished basement or mud room. This will help you further down the road when you start looking at homes
     
  • Brush up on types of home ownership – make sure you know the difference between freehold (it’s all yours), condo (you take care of the inside and pay fees to an association to look after the common areas and maintenance) and co-op (similar to condos but instead of “owning” your unit, you buy shares in the whole building and pay maintenance and repair fees)
     
  • Understand market conditions – supply and demand can change from neighbourhood to neighbourhood, region to region. So, getting to know the market can help you get more bang for your buck. And so can your Real Estate agent

 

Step 2: Choosing an Agent

Buying a home is personal and emotional. So the relationship with your real estate agent has to be built on expertise, trust and mutual respect. After all, they will be acting as your eyes, ears and voice throughout the process. They have a fiduciary duty to act in your best interests, to be completely transparent and accountable to you. Here’s what a Royal LePage agent will do:

  • Educate you about the current market conditions
  • Discuss and analyze your wants and needs against your budget
  • Guide you to homes that fit your criteria
  • Coordinate the work of other professionals you’ll need during the process
  • Negotiate with the seller on your behalf
  • Make sure all the required paperwork is fully completed, accurate and that deadlines are met
  • Work with you to resolve any challenges that may arise

And while your agent will likely be a great source of advice on financing, it is ultimately your responsibility to understand and secure it.

So, let’s move on to financing…

 

 

Step 3: Understanding Financing

Like many things in life, planning ahead is the key to success. So, you should know the price range you can afford before you start shopping. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Down payment – this is usually the percentage of the total cost of a home that you’ll need to pay. The more money you put down, the more money you’ll save on monthly payments and, in the long run, interest paid
     
  • Knowing what you can afford – how much house you can afford comes down to 3 factors: your monthly mortgage payment, your down payment and the amortization period or length of time it will take to pay off the loan
     
  • Getting pre-approved – this will really help you figure out what you can spend on a home because you’ll know before you start shopping. And you’ll be protected against rising interest rates as well

 

Articles Courtesy of Royal LePage

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