Since a home is usually our biggest investment, many homebuyers are first time buyers or they have not bought or sold a home for many years so they do not know or do not remember what mistakes to avoid. This is another reason you should look for a home with knowledgeable real estate agents like us.
Shop for a Loan First
It’s important to get a pre-approval for your purchase so you know how much money you have to spend. Your budget may be more or less than you think. If you shop in the wrong price point, you may be disappointed by what you see or disappointed by what you cannot afford. It is difficult to realign your tastes once you have been looking at nicer homes than you can afford.
There are all sorts of costs associated with buying a home. You will need to pay the Property Transfer Tax (click here for more info), lawyers fees for conveyance, moving and/or packing costs, cleaning (not everyone has the same standards), insurance, utilities, property taxes, strata fees (if not a detached home) and home maintenance costs or deferred maintenance costs. We can usually inquire to find out what current tax, hydro and gas bills are. A home inspection will shine a light on any visible home repairs or deferred maintenance items that need to be taken care of.
Buying a home is all about trade offs. If your list of wants is too long and too specific, it may take you a long time to find a home or you may not find a home at all. Deciding what you really need versus what you want is a good idea at the beginning of your search. You can always make changes to a home to truly make it your own. Look for things like the layout, location and lot or land. These are things you cannot change, whereas condition, colour, cleanliness, and clutter are things you can change. With a little elbow grease and imagination, you can change these things and increase the home’s appeal and value. This is an opportunity to make a home your own. It’s important to have vision or search with realtors who do, like us.
Don’t Forget About the Future
It’s important to remember if you are shopping for a 5 year, 10 year or forever home. Your life plans need to align with the timeline of the home. If you are thinking of expanding your family in the near future, you need to have enough room to grow. If you are thinking of downsizing, you may want to stay where you are a little longer rather than move to a larger home.
We love to talk real estate. If you are wondering about what a move would look like for your family, call us! We are available and happy to help whether you are just curious or serious.