Things you need to know before you buy a house or condo:
- When do I apply for a mortgage?
Now. This process is most important because talking to an experienced mortgage broker about precisely what you can afford will provide critical information and parameters to work with. Determine your budget based on what you can afford to repay now, not the maximum you’re allowed to borrow.
- I don’t trust realtors. Can i do it all myself?
You could, but why would you when an experienced realtor (notice a trend) on the buyer’s side costs you nothing. There are tens of thousands of realtors in the Toronto area. Choose one carefully. Too many are terrible at their jobs. Let the realtors convince you of their value in the process. & do not sign any representation agreement until you are comfortable with the realtor (and the paperwork).
We are convinced we will gain your trust so it’s most important to respect each other throughout the process.
- What is the land transfer tax & when is it paid?
The Land Transfer Tax (taxes really) is paid on the closing date or the same day the money to buy the house or condo is transferred to the seller and you get the keys. The taxes can be calculated here. Ask us about rebates to first time buyers.
- How much is the deposit?
Typically, a 5% deposit should be handed to the seller’s brokerage when a deal to purchase has been successfully negotiated. We always recommend a certified cheque or bank draft to improve your odds.
- What is a status certificate?
When you buy a condo, co-ownership or a co-operative, most deals are conditional upon the review of a status certificate which contains important relevant documentation about the corporation that controls your unit and the building. Details about the reserve fund, insurance, other financials and the legal status of the condo corporation. Legally you have a 10 day rescission period during which you and your lawyer may look over to ensure all is in order. If not, you might cancel the deal without repercussions.
- Who pays the commission?
The seller pays all of the commission (but the buyer pays the land transfer tax) in most cases.
- What is the MiHouse Group?
Marc and Michell are at the head of the MiHouse Group that includes the website portal MiHouse.ca, our real estate business, Toronto Modern Homes, Urban Toronto Homes and Wibu Properties Inc.
- What can i really afford?
A question that is best answered by the type of lifestyle you have and want and relates to the first point. People have a tendency to think 2 things 1) my income will always increase 2) the value of, and equity in my house will always increase. Try to think conservatively
- What is the purpose of a condition in an offer?
So you like a house or a condo and you want to offer on it but several aspects of the deal are still up in the air. A condition allows you to put the ball in your court by negotiating the offer, and having the seller (or buyer) accept the deal pending confirmation of the ‘several aspects’ such as financing, home inspection, verification of the status certificate and other slightly less common items to verify. If you get bad answers to these conditions, you can pull out of the deal without repercussions.
- Carefully weigh the advice of friends.
If your friends are experts in certain related fields then listen carefully. Otherwise friends could steer you and all or any directions.
- Take the time to sniff out any issues with the property.
Let us help you and advise through your point of view. We get paid to spot red flags. We would like to see you happy for a long time.
- Don’t be afraid to walk away from a bad deal
Use the information you gain with the due diligence. You will have 3 options. The first is to go ahead with an offer, the second is to adjust your own evaluation of the property and negotiate a better price. The third is to walk away if you find too many surprises to deal with.
- The search can take longer than you think
In a sellers’ market there is usually a shortage of places to buy. It may take a long time to find the right place.
- Don’t let yourself feel pressured.
If you need to, tell your realtor to back off or slow down. If they respond poorly, they might not be for you.