There are several things to keep in mind when you are thinking of buying a home.
Here is a 10-step process that may be useful, especially for first time home buyers:
Step 1: Contact a Mortgage Specialist
- When you are ready to take the first step of purchasing a home, contact a Mortgage Specialist to get fully pre-approved. Some of the information they will require is a job letter, proof of income, list of assets and liabilities, and Notice of Assessments just to name a few. The benefit of this step is to understand your financial position in order to find out what your budget for a home should be. If you are unsure of how to get in touch with a mortgage specialist, ask a REALTOR®. Realtors work alongside mortgage specialists, lawyers, and other professionals in the purchase and sale of real estate. You Will also need to have a Notary Public/Lawyer for your real estate transaction.
Step 2: Find a REALTOR® That is Right For You
- Talk to a REALTOR® and make sure to ask any questions you have whatsoever. This is the best way to find an agent that is right for you. Let’s face it, personality types can differ and you want a Real Estate Agent that you are comfortable working with. This is one of the biggest purchases to date and you want to know, like and trust your Real Estate Agent.
Step 3: Your Criteria List ("Must Haves")
- Once you have found the right REALTOR® for you, you can provide a list of “Must Haves” and “Must not Haves”. Tell your REALTOR® what is it that you are looking for in your home. You will then collectively decide which properties to see. Your REALTOR® will have access to new listings the moment it hits the market, even before hitting the public websites. Sometimes, this list is not as apparent until you have seen several homes that you can compare and contrast with.
Step 4: Zooming-in on your List and Home Options
- After seeing homes, your criteria will likely change. Whether it is location, exposure, size, or features. Eventually, you and your Real Estate Agent will have a better idea of what you need and want. As your criteria narrows down, you will come closer to identifying the right home.
Step 5: You Have Found "The One"
- You’ve found “the one”. Your REALTOR® will search comparable homes and find the market value of the home you would like to purchase. He/She will also go over the contract wit you in details, and discuss a strategy for negotiations. Remember, it’s not just the price that is negotiable. Dates and terms can be just as important to Sellers.
Step 6: Congratulations! & Doing your Due Diligence
- Congratulations! You have an accepted offer. If you have subject clauses, you will have several working days (negotiated in the contract) to remove them. Subject clauses can include conditions that give the Buyer time to perform their due diligence and ensure they know what they are buying before the contract is binding. Some of the due diligence include reviewing the Property Disclosure Statement, Title Search, Strata Documents and Bylaws, Inspection Report from an Inspector of the Buyer’s choice, making sure you can obtain Property Insurance, and getting full approval from the Lender of the price and property. Don't worry, your REALTOR® has the knowledge and will guide you through each step. He/She will also go through all these documents with you.
Step 7: Removing Subjects & Putting down a deposit
- Once you are confident in what you are buying or investing in, you can remove the conditions and provide your deposit bank draft to secure the property. This deposit is usually required immediately after you have fulfilled the conditions. This deposit will form part of your down payment.
Step 8: Conveyances
- Your Real Estate Agent will forward all your documents to your Mortgage Specialist, Lawyer/Notary Public for Conveyance. All of the above parties are on your side to ensure that the money accounted for ends up to the rightful parties, as well as to ensure the title of the home is transferred to your name. The transfer of title to your name will occur on the Completion Date, which is agreed upon when contracts are exchanged.
Step 9: Almost There...
- A few days before the Completion Date, you will visit your lawyer/notary to sign the transfer papers, as well as provide them with a bank draft for the outstanding balance. This number will include the remainder of the Down Payment, Legal Fees, Adjustments, Property Transfer Tax and other fees, if any, that was explained by your Lawyer/Notary on your Statement of Adjustment.
Step 10: Completion & Possession Day
- Completion Date: Congratulations! This is the day when the property is registered in your name and the funds have been processed.
Possession Date: Get ready to pack and unpack because you are an owner of your new home. Your Realtor will have your keys for you. Make sure you have bought home insurance and have BC Hydro connected!
Prepared and Presented By:
Farah Surani | Residential REALTOR®
Your Vancouver Expert
Century 21 In Town Realty | 421 Pacific St, Vancouver, BC
(604) 779-9428 | farah.Surani@century21.ca