" Guide to "Buying a Home" has been prepared by Royal LePage Real Estate Professionals to offer you practical information about the buying process. It outlines steps that you and your Hamilton Real Estate Agent will follow during your search for the ideal home.
Determine What You Can Afford
* Purchasing a home involves one-time costs and monthly expenses.
* The largest one-time cost is the down payment. It usually represents between 10-25% of the total price of the property.
* In addition to the actual purchase price, there are a number of other expenses that you might be expected to pay for.
Obtain A Pre-Approved Mortgage
* Having a pre-approved mortgage will give you confidence of knowing exactly what you can spend on a home before you start looking. You will also be protected against interest rate increases while you look for your new home.
* Your Mortgage Specialist will answer your questions and help you determine which financing terms and options are right for you. Your Mortgage Specialist and Real Estate Professional work as a team to help you find the right home and select the best financing.
Finalizing A Mortgage
* Once you've found the home you want to purchase, there are some documents you'll probably be asked for in order to finalize your financing. They will include:
1. A copy of the real estate listing of the property. If the home is still to be built, the mortgage lender will need to see the architect's or builder's plans and details on lot size and location.
2. A copy of the offer to purchase or the building contract, if this document has been prepared.
3. Documents to confirm employment, income and source of pre-approval.
* If you have a Pre-Approved Mortgage, it's a simple matter of finalizing a few details which your Mortgage Specialist will explain to you.
The Major Elements of An Offer
Depending on local market conditions, your opinion of value or the price you offer may be different from the seller's asking price.
The deposit shows your good faith and will be applied against the purchase of the home when the sale closes. Your Hamilton Real Estate Agent can advise you on a appropriate amount.
Includes the total price offered and the financing details. You may arrange your own financing or ask to assume the seller's mortgage, especially if it has an attractive interest rate.
These might include "subject to home inspection", "subject to you obtaining financing" or "subject to you selling your property".
5. Inclusions and Exclusions
These might include appliances and certain fixtures or decorative items, such as window coverings or mirrors.
6. Closing or Possession Date
Generally, the day the title of the property is legally transferred and the transaction of funds finalized unless otherwise specified.
How To Make An Offer
* When it comes time to make an offer, your Real Estate Professional can provide current market information and will assist you in drafting your offer.
* Your Real Estate Professional will communicate your offer, sometimes known as an Offer To Purchase, to the seller, or the seller's representative, on your behalf. Sometimes there may be more than one offer on a property coming in at the same time. Your Real Estate Professional can guide you through this process.
* The offer can be Firm or Conditional.
-Firm Offer To Purchase; usually preferable to the seller, because it means that you are prepared to purchase the home without any condition. If the offer is accepted, the home is yours.
-Conditional Offer To Purchase: means that you have placed one or more conditions on the purchase, such as "subject to home inspection", "subject to financing" or "subject to sale of buyer's existing home." The home is not sold until all the conditions have been met.
Acceptance of An Offer
* Your Offer To Purchase will be presented as soon as possible. The seller may accept the offer, reject it, or submit a counter-offer.
* The counter-offer may be in reference to the price, the closing date, or any number of variables.
* The offers can go back and forth until both parties have agreed or one of you ends the negotiations.
Hire A Legal Professional
* A legal professional is there to represent your interests and to process the legal documentation required.
* Your Real Estate Professional can provide you with the names of legal professionals who specialize in real estate.
* The legal process differs from province to province. Your Real Estate Professional or legal professional will advise you on the steps to be taken before the keys to your new home are presented to you.
Have The Home Inspected
* Having the property inspected by a qualified home inspector will give you the added confidence that you've made the right decision (costs vary).
* When the procedure is complete, you may wish to ask for a full written report plus estimated costs for any necessary repairs.
Some Moving Tips
1. Book the Movers:
*You can choose to have your movers pack everything, or just the breakables, or you can pack yourself. It is a good idea to obtain estimates from several different companies.
2. If You Own Your Present Home:
*Arrange to have your gas, water, and electric meters read on the day you leave and have the bills forwarded to your new address. *Have the oil tank read and filled before your sale closes, and provide a receipt to your legal professional if required *If the water heater or furnace is rented, arrange for a transfer of the
rental agreement to the purchaser. *Disconnect your telephone, cable TV, and water softener.
3. If you Rent Your Present Home:
*Give the necessary written notice to your landlord and make arrangements for the return of any money you have on deposit.
4. At Your "New" Home:
*Make arrangements for the gas and electric utilities, water softener, telephone, and cable TV to be connected on the day the sale closes.
*Get the "Change of Address" cards from the post office and send out well before moving day.
*Have the post office forward your mail to your new address. "Cancel any contracted services and pre-authorized cheques.
*Inform gardening, dry cleaning, garbage pickup, newspapers, magazines, and other home services. Arrange for services at your new address.
*Cancel or transfer social, athletic, civic, religious, or business affiliations, and memberships.
*Arrange for transfer of medical, dental, prescription, and optical records.
*Change the address on your driver's license(s) effective the day of the move.
*Collect all items out for cleaning, repair, or storage, e.g. dry cleaning.
*Make special arrangements for the moving of perishables, such as plants.
*Make special arrangements for the moving of your pets.
*Safely dispose of all flammable liquids as it is illegal for movers to carry them.