Buying an Edmonton property
At times builders will offer newly-built homes that are available for immediate delivery. These can usually be ready to move into within 30 days! meaning that sometimes the builders may be eager to sell - but don't expect them to tell you this.
There are a few reasons why immediate delivery homes might be available:
The community is almost complete so the builder had the contractors build “spec” homes on the last lots
The home is a show home
The contract on the home fell through
The builder purposely built the home for immediate delivery for buyers who are relocating or who have already sold their homes and need to move in quickly
Sometimes you are able to get a good deal on an these delivery homes, and some builders may offer you financing incentives or additonal options for free instead of lowering the price, which is understandable because recent buyers don’t want the last homes on the street to sell for less than what they paid for it.
If you’re looking to move-in quick or would like to walk through what you’re buying before you sign a contract, an immediate delivery home might be right for you.
Buying a home can build wealth: How to buy a home in today's market
There are more options now than ever for home buyers in today’s market. Properties are available below the average market price, with selections ranging in price for starter homes, buy-up houses, condos ,executive properties and luxury estates. Today’s a good day to buy your dream home!
Lenders are more motivated to offer good rates and innovative financing, such as buy-downs and adjustable loans. This is great news - you can qualify for even more home on your current income.
There are four wealth builders of home ownership:
Leverage means borrowing money to control a property and receive its benefits.
For example, you acquire a $100,000 home with a 10% down payment - or $10,000. Let’s assume the property appreciates by 10% in the first year - the house is now worth $110,000. You earned $10,000 on your investment of $10,000 - a profit of 100% in one year! Not taking into account financing costs, which would lower your net field.
If home prices rise by 3% a year during the next decade, your $100,000 home would be worth $134,392 in ten years. With your $10,000 down payment, you’d realize a 344% profit. If prices rise by 5% per year, you’d profit 629%. At 8% per year, you’d profit a whopping 1,159% due to your leveraged purchase!
That’s leverage by its basic definition: a big return using borrowed money.
When you sell your home, all capital gain you obtain is tax free (provided it’s your principal residence). Depending on how much captial you gain, this amount could possibly create a sizable savings account or help you purchase your next home.
It’s also possible to structure your affairs to make your mortgage tax deductible if your investment portfolio is greater than or equal to the mortgage you hold or will hold on your home.You may be able to restructure your portfolio and mortgage so that your mortgage interest is tax deductible.
If you or your spouse are first-time home buyers in Canada and have RRSPs, you could use the money in your RRSPs as a tax-free down payment on your dream home. This can be accomplished using Revenue Canada’s Home Buyers Plan. If you or your spouse have not owned property in British Columbia, you may be eligible for a reduction on your property transfer tax if you choose to buy a home there.
Paying your own mortgage (not someone else’s!)
Savings mortgage principal payments go directly into your pocket, instead of your landlord’s. You’re saving and building your own equity when you pay for a home that’s appreciating in value. This value amount is subject to inflation, local economy and any home improvements you make. However, not all properties will give you an appreciation windfall and you must buy wisely. Enlisting the help of a mortgage professional and real estate professional will help you make the smart decision so you can start building equity right away.
Wealth doesn’t always have to be financially related. Owning a home is about more than a roof over your head and a place to sleep. Many owners find the benefits of owning your home far outweigh the necessary upkeep - most enjoy the work because they’re working on their property and for their own benefit. Putting down real estate roots also helps you to become more involved in the community and can even help you meet new people and form friendships. Take pride in your new home!
Six ways buyers can take advantage of today’s real estate market
Ideally, you would quickly be able to find your dream home in a great location in the city. However, it’s important to be realistic. Don’t stretch your budget just because you fell in love with a home; be modest about price and find a good location that can work with your lifestyle. Even if your home isn’t your dream home right now, you have the option to improve it and make it your own.
Options for if you haven’t been able to save for a down payment and closing costs:
Consider negotiating a gift, loan or shared-equity arrangement with parents or other people looking for a good investment
Sell something of value - remember, you can always replace it later
Finance the closing costs, if your lender approves, or get help from the seller
Use a tax refund
Borrow on your life insurance or securities
If your parents own their home and are over the age of 62, they can consider doing a Reverse Mortgage program which allows them to unlock a percentage of the capital they have accumulated on their home - without having to make payments while they continue to own their home - to assist you with your down payment. The Canadian Home Income Plan (CHIP) is a program supported by the two major canadian banks and is available to homeowners in British Columbia, Ontario and Alberta.
Pre-qualifying yourself as a buyer can help you determine what price you can afford. Lenders typically consider your total basic monthly affordable housing costs like your mortgage, principal and interest payments, real estate taxes and insurance payment. Affordability is based on 30 to 32% of your gross monthly income. With additional long-term debts, the ratio can be up to 40%.
Some lenders will extend these limits, based on their assessment of your financial situation and your loan plan. Being pre-qualified also gives you more buying power as sellers are likely to consider your offer over those of buyers who aren’t pre-qualified.
There are many kinds of loans available: fixed rate, adjustable rate, government backed mortgage insurance (CMHC), assumptions, buydowns, blended loans, seller takebacks and more. Terms and interest rates vary greatly among loans and lenders. Those factors, as well as your income and length of time you expect to own the home for must be considered - we can help with that!
Choosing your lender
As shown above, mortgage options are numerous thanks to recent innovations in mortgage plans. We have the knowledge and expertise to help you structure your mortgage to your best advantage.
What we can do for you:
Explain loan programs clearly and simply to ensure you completely understand your options
Perform a full financial assessment and explanation of your best options
Help loans get processed quickly
Dependability - we’re here to protect your best interests
Consult a professional
For best results, consult a professional. Buying a home involves many details and we can help you understand the home buying process and ensure its handled smoothly and professionally. We’re here to help, give us a call to get started!
Some different reasons to own your home
Owning a home is so much more than just a financial affair. Many homeowners love the peace of mind that comes along with owning your own home. Not worrying about housing means you can focus your energy elsewhere!
Here are a few benefits first-time home owners may not think of:
A greater sense of belonging to the community
Many home owners report a greater sense of attachment to their city after purchasing a home. It’s easier to get interested in what happens in town, to the roads, the schools and shopping areas, because these are changes that will actually affect you down the road.
A commitment to something and a sense of stability
Owning your home creates a sense of stability that renting does not provide. There’s no landlord to force you to move, your kids will never have to change schools and you’ll have the freedom to plan your life years in advance because you know exactly where you’ll be living.
A feeling of control
When you own your home, the sky’s the limit when it comes to making changes. You can remodel, landscape the front and backyard, build a new deck, etc. We don’t always have control over other aspects of our life so having a space completely under your control can make you feel more stable and happier.
Living in a house with children is easier
In general, children do better in school and feel more secure
Oddly, buyers report that their children did better in school after they bought a home. Maybe it's because your feelings of stability spread to them? We’ll never know for sure, but it’s a definite bonus of owning your own home.
You save time and money by not going to the laundromat
This may seem like a small detail, but if you’ve lived in places where you had to lug your clothes down to a laundromat and spend two to three hours waiting for them to be clean, you’ll probably appreciate having your own appliances.
Say you wash laundry about once per week. On average, it’s about $1.50 for a washer load and $1.50 for a dryer load. If you do three loads that take 3 hours, that’s $9 per week. That’s $432 and 144 hours per year! Think of what you could do with that time and money!
Straight answers about an agents role
What role does a real estate agent play?
Know the players
The relationship between the agent and the principal
Frequently Asked Questions - For buyers
How can a seller’s agent or subagent help me and what can’t they do?
- Help you determine how much you can afford for a home and explain how different loans can stretch your buying power
- Search all homes in the Multiple Listing Service and present you with homes that you select as best meeting your needs
- Provide general information about homes, recent area sales, neighbourhoods and local lending institutions
- Prepare your sales contract and present it to the seller
- Walk you through the homebuying process and get you in touch with lenders, inspectors and sellers throughout the whole settlement
The seller’s agent is obligated to share information you provide with the seller, so it’s a good idea to keep certain financial and personal matters to yourself. For example, you may not want to disclose that you’re willing to pay more than your offered price, or that you’d agree to pay more points or closing costs, or that you’re especially motivated to buy. The seller may capitalize on this information and you could miss out on getting the best deal.
The agent is not obligated to give an opinion of the home’s condition, the value of improvements, any urgency the seller may feel to sell and if the seller is willing to accept an offer below their price. The seller’s agent will provide you with the answer: “I can only quote the listing price” should you choose to push them for more information about these matters. You must represent yourself in the negotiations and terms process. The seller’s agent will present your offer and bring you either a signed offer, rejection or counteroffer and you are free to respond in whichever way you’d like.
Should I be represented by a buyer’s agent?
I know the seller’s agent is paid by the seller, but who pays the buyer’s agent
If the buyer’s agent I use will split a commission based on the sales price, doesn’t the buyer’s agent have a conflict of interest when it comes to negotiating the lowest price for me?
Can a buyer’s agent show me all the homes for sale in the area?
Can a seller’s agent show me all available homes?
Frequently asked questions - For sellers
I’m selling my home, should I let buyer’s agents show my home?
If a buyer is using a buyer’s agent, do I have to pay the buyer’s agent a commission
Can the seller’s agent represent me in the sale of my home and then continue to represent me as a buyer’s agent when I purchase my next home?
If you liked your agent, that’s great! You can choose to do this if the seller’s agent also works as a buyer’s agent. As long as you both agree to the representation, they can represent you as a buyer’s agent under a separate agreement.
How and when will I find out who an agent is working for?
The Canadian Real Estate Association supports disclosure laws that require real estate agents to “provide timely, meaningful written, disclosure to consumers of all possible agency relationships available under provincial law and the most significant implications of choosing one type over another”.
Most provinces require real estate agents to disclose to both the buyer and seller their agency relationship. This disclosure should happen early, before the seller signs a listing agreement, a buyer is shown properties or the real estate agent is told any confidential information. The consumer will usually sign a form acknowledging the agency disclosure.