Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Step 1 is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. A pre-approval lets you know how much you can spend and locks you in at the current interest rate for 90 days or more, allowing you to shop confidently. This is especially important with a potential interest rate hike by the Bank of Canada, which may impact your mortgage rate and, ultimately, your home-buying budget.

Open houses are a great way to get more exposure in the marketplace and create an even bigger buzz about your property. List with us, and we’ll take care of this and other showings for you.2

Of course, we try to make showing a home as convenient for all parties involved. It’s important to remember that you shouldn’t limit buyers too extensively, though. Typical restrictions require a certain amount of notice or setting a “curfew” for showings – a time when the last showing must be finished.

The simple answer is yes. Home inspections are incredibly important and often required when financing your home with a loan. Even if an inspection isn’t required, getting one will show any defect that can be hard to detect. Besides helping you discover more about your house, home inspections will also give you peace of mind.

In real estate, a conditional offer refers to a set of specific conditions that the esteemed buyer must fulfill within the designated conditional period. If these conditions are not satisfactorily met, the transaction is considered null and void, and the buyer's deposit is returned to them. Buyers often include specific conditions in their offers to ensure their protection and allow sufficient time for thorough due diligence. These conditions typically encompass aspects such as securing financing, conducting property inspections, obtaining insurance, seeking legal advice, and, in the case of condominium properties, reviewing the status certificate with the assistance of a solicitor. As a seasoned real estate professional, it is essential to note that any conditions or clauses can be included in an agreement of purchase and sale, provided that all parties involved are in mutual agreement.

The duration for selling properties may vary depending on the province, city, and local market. This can vary based on the listing price, the property's location, the home's overall condition, and the marketing strategy. It is important to inform sellers and buyers about the average number of days it typically takes to sell similar properties. This ensures that their expectations align with the current market conditions.

To successfully secure a mortgage, it is necessary that you have the required down payment, confirm your employment status, and provide proof of income and credit score. Above all, you’ll need to be able to prove to the lender you can afford the amount you’re asking to borrow and all future monthly payments. Your income stability, as well as your debt service ratio, will be assessed.

The down payment is an essential part of your purchase. Some private lenders offer mortgages with zero down, but the interest rate will likely be much higher, and the cost to you will be much greater in the long run. This is generally not recommended. Don’t cut corners and risk your home and investment. Save up at least five percent of the purchase price, and consider reducing your home-buying budget to make it more affordable. You can also take advantage of the first-time Home Buyer’s Plan to borrow from your RRSPs – tax-free!

Credit scores indicate financial stability. According to the Government of Canada, your rating “indicates the risk you represent for lenders, compared with other consumers…The credit-reporting agencies Equifax and TransUnion use a scale from 300 to 900. High scores on this scale are good. The higher your score, the lower the risk for the lender.” Therefore, obtaining a higher credit rating will typically result in securing a more favorable mortgage rate, as it indicates a greater likelihood of fulfilling your scheduled payments.

Closing costs, an essential component of the home buying process, generally fall within the range of 1.5 to 4 percent of the property's purchase price. These expenses include various costs, such as legal and administrative fees, typically settled upon the completion of the transaction. You can expect to pay for your home inspection, mortgage default insurance if your down payment is less than 20 percent of the purchase price, Land Transfer Taxes, lawyer fees, appraisal fees, and property taxes, among other things. Make sure you budget for this! A $500,000 house's closing cost might be between $7,500 and $20,000.

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