When looking for a realtor, you cannot find anyone better than Michael. Michael was helpful, knowledgeable, patient and went above and beyond. I was very impressed with his dedication and commitment to his work. I will definitely be using Michael in the future and would recommend him to anyone looking to buy or sell. Thanks Michael!
– Katerina Bletnitsky
Step 1: The Pre-Approval
Obtain a ‘pre-approval’ from a lending institution such as a bank or mortgage broker. This will enable you to know where you stand financially before attempting to purchase your next home.
- Mortgage Broker: this may be your best option as they can provide you favourable mortgage rates and terms available in today’s marketplace. Mortgage Brokers are not limited to one lender or Financial Institution, they have access to all of them.
- Bank or other Institution: although you may feel like your bank “knows” you, they are limited in the products & rates they can offer based on their lending policies.
To get fill out an no-obligation pre-approval application, click here. To experiment with monthly payments, feel free to use the mortgage calculator.
Step 2: Costs of Buying a Home
Down Payment: 5% or more. A conventional mortgage requires that the buyer have at least 20% down. If you have under 20% for a down payment, you must have CMHC insure the mortgage, which will range from 0.5%-3.75% based on the amount of your down payment.
These additional costs are an area that sneaks up on a lot of buyers. On the conservative side, I recommend to budget for an additional 3% of the purchase price for closing costs.
Step 3: Buyer Consultation
This is where I come in. All of my clients are set up with my 360o Home Buying Plan. This consultation is designed to equip you with the expert knowledge and advice needed to go forward with your purchase. I will be able to advise you on tips, trends, market activities, financing, and how to handle the unexpected. I am also skilled to prepare the offer to purchase and negotiate the best purchasing price.
Everyone has different preferences when looking for a new home. It is my job to custom tailor your search in such a way that works for you. This consultation will identify your wants and needs for your next home, and prepare an effective & efficient listing search.
Why be represented by an agent when buying a home?
As your agent, I have fiduciary duties to protect your best interests by structuring the transaction to your advantage. Remember that if the agent isn’t working for you, they are working for the seller!
Click Here to Book Your Buyer Consultation
Step 4: House Hunting
This is where we actually start looking at homes for sale!
To find homes we use the MLS system, but not in the way you may be used to. In all likely hood, you have visited REALTOR.CA at some point. This is a site designed for the public. However, when you work with me as your agent, I provide you with your own customizable listing search. This search sets out the parameters of your search, and automatically emails you listings as they come up for sale. It also updates you on sale prices, price changes, and photos added. When listings are emailed to you, you get to see more information than REALTOR.CA. There is no better way of house hunting.
This search tool is just the start. In addition, you can expect me to daily peruse exclusive office listings, private sales and new construction. Remember, when you get up to go to work - I get up to go to work, which is finding your next home!
Step 5: Pricing
How do you know what you should be paying for the home? Let’s face it, in today’s market, some listings are overpriced, some are underpriced and some are priced appropriately. Whatever the case may be, I have the tools and the skills to accurately evaluate a home’s market value. By looking at comparable homes that have sold and haven’t sold in the subject home’s area, we can determine a likely selling price. This is called a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA).
Multiple Offers are a common occurrence in today’s market, and these situations make it harder to predict at what price a home will sell. There are many strategies and tactics to increase your chances of winning, which we would discuss at our buyer consultation.
Step 6: Preparing an Offer
The offer to purchase is a complex document and should be written by a professional.
- Price: As per the CMA.
- Deposit: At least $1000. Remember that this forms part of your down payment and purchase price.
- Conditions: these are put in place to protect you. Some of the more common conditions include subject to financing, home inspection, lawyer’s approval, and sale of buyer’s home.
- Terms: Balance of purchase price, zoning memorandums, possession date, etc.
- Inclusions: Fridges, stove, dishwasher, etc.
Step 7: Satisfying Conditions
As a buyer, you must make a reasonable effort to satisfy the conditions you wrote in the offer. You simply cannot back out of the contract for any reason.
- Financing: this is the most common condition written. It is important to know that a pre-approval from a lender is not a free ride to write any offer within that price range. The actual approval has not yet been given. The approval is where the lender agrees in writing to provide the arranged mortgage at a particular price for a particular home. The lender will have to send in documents to CMHC for their approval on any insured mortgage.
- Inspection: this is where you arrange for a qualified Home Inspector to thoroughly inspect the home for any deficiencies or major structural problems. A home inspection never guarantees that the home won’t have any problems moving forward, as it is very common that the inspector cannot see all aspects of the home (eg. foundation walls in a finished basement). The typical cost for an inspection is anywhere from $250-$450. A recommend home inspector is provided in the Resource section.
Step 8: Celebrate!
Once the conditions of the offer have been satisfied, the contract is complete and is legally binding. You have successfully purchased a home!