How exciting!

You’ve made the decision to buy a home, and you’re doing your research and shopping online. Making this type of purchase is monumental whether it’s your forever home, an investment or retirement planning. Choose a Realtor that has your best interest at heart, whom you can trust and listens to your wants and needs.

Some things to consider when buying:

1. Buying Criteria: Wants vs. Needs and Must Haves:

Budget: Consider how much you want and more importantly have to spend on your purchase. There are additional expenses that are in addition to the sale price. Here are some of the costs that you should consider:

· Legal fees
· Real estate agent fees
· Appraisal fee
· Survey costs
· Land transfer tax
· A high-ratio mortgage insurance premium
· Mortgage broker fees
· An interest adjustment for the mortgage.
· Reimbursement to seller for the unused portion of any prepaid property taxes or utility bills


It’s true what they say, location, location, location! When considering your home or purchase your desired location may be different depending on the needs. Where you live has an impact on your lifestyle and it’s also one of the most significant factors on the value of your home. You should really evaluate your wants vs. needs and must haves when it comes to location. Some factors to consider when buying a home is commute to work, schools, family, shopping/entertainment and proximity to place of worship.

If you are purchasing an investment property location can differ based on your financial goals and plans. A knowledgeable Realtor can help you navigate this process.


The fun part- features. This is where you get to build your dream home on paper and have your Realtor find it for you! What is most important to you? What features are wants vs needs and what features are MUST HAVE’S? A large property, exquisite ensuite, 4 bedrooms- make a list and prioritize the features.

Type of Home

Picture your dream home, what type of home would you like to ideally live in? Are you up for the task of cutting the law and maintaining your property- then a single-family detached home or freehold town home may be the right fit for you. Or, are you the type of person who wants low-maintenance living and enjoy the benefits of condo living? Either way, it is equally important to determine what type of home best suits your budget and desired lifestyle.

2. Searching for a home

Ok, so now you have somewhat of an idea about your buying criteria! Here is where a Realtor can help you bring your dream to reality. By utilizing a variety of tools a Realtor can search for properties that meet your requirements. Let a professional do the leg work on your search using their skills, tools and networks.

3. Viewing properties

See a property that has sparked interest? Review your buying criteria- does the home meet your budget, must-haves and location? Does it speak to the lifestyle you want and desire? It’s time to view this property! A professional Realtor can bring you on home tours of your choice. A seasoned professional can also help you identify some common technical components such as: wiring, power outlets, heating, foundation and roof maintenance, windows, plumbing etc. Although it is strongly encouraged to have a professional home Inspector, a realtor can provide you with information outlined on listings.

4. Making an offer

You LOVE the property! It’s a great fit for your end goals. Whether its to raise a family or get into the real estate market the next step to making this idea a reality is to put an offer on the property. The offer will generally include, the price you are willing to pay, expiration of the offer, a closing date for the purchase of the home and conditions for the purchase.

Some commonly included conditions are:

· Financing, which states you will be able to get a mortgage.
· Selling your current home.
· Survey provided by the seller that shows there are no encroachments on the property;
· Title of the property being owned by the seller (your lawyer will confirm via a title search).
· Home inspection by a qualified engineer; and
· Inclusion and exclusion of any appliances and other items

Lastly, a deposit typically is given upon acceptance of an offer. A deposit of appropriate value will show your good faith to the seller.

5. Acceptance of an offer

Congratulations! You’ve just purchased a property. Once an offer is accepted and all conditions are fully met, the offer becomes binding on both sides. If either party does not honour the agreement, legal action may be taken and the deposit may be forfeited. It’s important that your Realtor has outlined all components of the offer and you are fully aware of what is being signed.

Before the property can formally be handed over from the seller to the buyer, a few more things must be done. You will have to show proof of insurance to the institution that provided your mortgage. On or before closing day, the lawyers from both sides will arrange to transfer the property title from the seller to the buyer. The mortgage will be transferred to your lawyer’s trust account, and then to the seller. Your lawyer will bill you all additional expenses such as land transfer taxes or outstanding legal fees. Also be sure to check with your lawyer that everything is as stated in the offer-to-purchase.

Once this is complete and the keys are in your hands, then the home is yours!

If you’re considering buying now or in the future it is encouraged that you have a licensed Realtor to help you navigate the complexities of finding the right property for you!

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