One of the biggest investments made in life is buying a home. With real estate getting more and more expensive every year, you’re looking at a few hundred thousand to a couple of million dollars, depending on the type of home and location.

Big investments definitely come with a level of risk, but don’t worry! We’re here to help you mitigate risk and make sure that you’re in a good position to take that leap forward and make that purchase.

Do These Before Buying a Home

1. Find the right home

Decide whether you want a detached home, an apartment, a townhouse or a condo unit. There are intricacies that are unique to each type, so knowing which type you prefer can influence the buying process. 

Think long-term unless you’re moving temporarily. You may want to consider the following:

  • Location and neighbourhood – is this place and its environment a good match for you?
  • Size – do you have a growing family? 
  • Proximity – how long will it take you to get to work or take the kids back and forth to school?
  • Special features – does the house come with a pool?
  • Lifestyle needs – are you close to nature and local amenities?

2. Be prepared to finance your home

There’s no doubt that a lot of expenses are involved, so your ability to remain financially sound throughout is paramount in purchasing your dream home. Here’s what you can do.

Save for your down payment and closing costs. Home purchases in Canada require a 20% down payment in most cases, but allow up to a minimum of 5%, depending on the purchase price. Closing costs are fees that you pay before your home closes. These include legal and administrative fees, transfer taxes and insurance, among others. The total amount can range from 1.5 to 4% of the purchase price.

Pay off your debt. Two criteria that lenders check are your credit score and debt service ratios. As you decrease your debt, you also increase your chances of getting better deals from lenders.

Get pre-approved for a mortgage. A pre-approval gives you more insight into knowing how much of a mortgage you can qualify for, estimating mortgage payments and locking in the interest rate for 60-120 days. 

3. Search for great deals

By great deals, we don’t only refer to homes, but mortgages as well. Always remember that before you shop for your home, you’ll need a mortgage to back you up. 

Do your research: check out several mortgage options. Don’t just rely on your local banks. The difference of even half a percent can be substantial in the long run!

Research may cost you more of your time initially, but once you get the best mortgage and purchase price, it’ll definitely be worth your time in the long run!

4. Explore First Time Home Buyer Incentives (FTHBI)

If you’re a first time buyer, you’re in luck! The Canadian government offers incentives to help make it easier to secure your first home. 

The government lends 5 or 10% of the home’s purchase price which you can pay back at the same percentage amount after 25 years or when you sell the property. The First Time Home Buyer Incentive is a shared equity arrangement wherein the government shares in the ups and downs of the property. This means that if the property appreciates, you’d pay back more. If the property depreciates, you’d also pay less.

5. Get in touch with a real estate professional

Finding an experienced real estate professional that knows the area’s important. Benefits of using an experienced professional include rapport with other local professionals, knowledge of market trends and solid referrals working in tandem towards closing the deal. 

When finding a broker, make sure that you interview different real estate professionals so that you can consider all your options and choose the one who’s the right fit for your unique circumstances.

6. Ask a lot of questions

If you’re a buyer, it’s natural that you ask about what you’re buying. It’s rare to find people who decide to buy outright

Asking questions is a useful way of knowing more about a property and bringing to light potential red flags or points of concern. Asking the right questions allows you to evaluate the situation and come up with a more informed decision. 

7. Don’t involve your emotions

Getting too emotionally attached to a home prior to closing may be costly. The more emotionally attached a buyer gets, the more likely they’ll overpay.   

It’s best to stay objective and don’t get attached. Manage your emotions.

8. Get a home inspection

This may be one of the most underrated steps in the home buying process, but this is definitely one of the most important. 

A home inspection is an integral part of the buying process, as it exposes potential flaws of the property that may not be obvious. 

We highly recommend you to have an inspection done by a professional before acquiring any property. It may cost a bit more, but in the long run, it’ll save you time and money, and away from the hassle to deal with the unexpected.

Closing the Deal

If you’re in search of a home, you’re in luck! A myriad of resources are available and real estate professionals like Jellyfish Real Estate can answer your queries and help you throughout your journey towards buying a home.

While purchasing your first home may seem daunting, being ready will give you the confidence you’ll need to navigate the journey of home buying. Cheers to finding your new home!

We’re here to simplify your life

Jellyfish Real Estate is a team of real estate professionals. Our goal is to simplify your life, so you can spend less time worrying about real estate and more time living. 

If you’d like to read more about real estate, just visit our website regularly or if you’ve any questions or concerns about selling your home, buying your next property or you’re opting for a rental or rent-to-own, you may contact us today to get your questions answered.