your first home
What you need to know
With record low interest rates and great housing
affordability, it's a great time to buy a home.
Buying your first home is one of life's most
exciting experiences and one of the biggest decisions you'll make. Do
you want a townhome, apartment or a detached home with a yard? What area
would you like to live in? With the help of a realtor you'll find the
home that's right for you.
Here are some tips to help you become your own
Tip #1: Work with an
A good realtor will make the home-buying process
easier, helping you avoid common pitfalls and making sure you get the
best value for your money. He or she can give you information about the
community where you plan to buy including schools, shopping, community
centres, parks and great coffee places. They'll make the complex
understandable; that includes market trends, assessments, taxes, zoning,
transportation and more.
Tip #2: Determine
Before you start looking at homes, it's a good
idea to find out how much you can borrow. Being pre-qualified for a loan
determines the housing price you can afford. It also allows you to move
quickly when you find the right home. Your realtor and/or mortgage
broker will assist you in determining the exact amount you can borrow,
based on your income, expenses and current level of debt.
Tip #3: Make a
"wants and needs" list
Your wish list should include both
"must-haves" and "nice-to-have but can do without,"
in terms of features, style, size, and location. Sit down and make a
list of everything you absolutely need in a home. Then list everything
that you would like, but could live without. This list will help your
realtor pinpoint your ideal home. You can always change this list as you
start looking at homes and get a better feel for the market. Try to
anticipate what your life is going to be like in the next few years. For
example, are you planning to have children? Are you planning to change
jobs? Would it be possible for you to work from home? Does the home
you're planning to buy have enough space, or will it be too big in a few
Tip #4: Keep notes
on the houses you view
Make notes on the positives and negatives of each
home you view. It's important to write down what you thought of each
home and give them a rating that will help you determine which home is
best for you. Also look for features that may affect each home's resale
value in the future. Your realtor can point out features that you should
be paying attention to.
Buying your first home is a very exciting time.
Your realtor will help make this a fun and enjoyable journey. Happy