Purchasing a home is one of the most expensive transactions you will ever make. There are several decisions to be made.

Mortgage Pre-Approval

Discovering how much money you will be approved for a mortgage is the first step in buying a home. This will give you an idea of the price bracket you can look in. You will also know how much down payment you will be required to make. Along with a pre-approval, you will be given an interest rate which will be locked in for approximately 90 days.

Credit Checks

People with a good credit rating will have a better chance of being approved. A good credit rating will also improve the interest rate you will be given on your mortgage.

Deciding on a Neighbourhood

A big decision involved in purchasing a home is the location. Some people prefer the convenience of city living, whereas others prefer a quieter setting. If there are children involved, ensuring educational facilities are close by may be important. Once you have decided on a specific area you are interested in, it is a good idea to contact the local Police Agency. They can tell you how many occurrences have taken place in that specific area.

Type of Home

Once you have your pre-approval and preferred location in place, it’s time to focus on your needs. There are several different types of homes to choose from. You need to make the decision according to your budget and personal needs. Some of the home types are as follows:

  • Fully Detached
  • Semi-Detached
  • Freehold Townhomes
  • Bungalows
  • Raised Bungalows
  • Side splits
  • Back splits
  • Link Homes
  • Condos
  • Duplexes
  • Triplexes

Additional Expenses

Purchasing a home and moving comes with many expenses. Beware of condo and maintenance fees. House insurance is mandatory for lenders. Know what your property taxes are going to be. Find out what the approximate utility costs are going to be for that home. Many people forget about closing fees.

Hiring a Realtor

There are hundreds of Realtors in the market. It is highly recommended that you do your homework. You will want someone that is reputable and knows the area you are interested in buying in well. Always ask how many clients they are currently dealing with. You don’t want someone that has so many clients that they don’t have time to meet all your needs. Decide on the best form of communication with your realtor. It may be email, text or direct phone conversation.

Hiring a Real Estate Lawyer

For your own protection, it is best to have a reputable Real Estate Lawyer. They will take care of the legalities of the transaction. They will also handle the financial end for you.

Home Inspector

Another form of protection, is hiring a home inspector. A home inspector will access all the major components of the home for any required repairs or inefficiencies. It is very important to know prior to the deal closing what you are up against. The home inspectors report may also be a good price bargaining tool.