What to Expect From a Real Estate Professional

An Explanation of the Process

A REALTOR® will not take it for granted that you know all the ins and outs of the buying/ selling process. Instead, he or she will provide you with a full explanation of what to expect and that’s important so you’re not faced with any surprises along the way.

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Title Insurance Explained

Title insurance is growing in popularity in Canada. But what is it exactly? Should you get it? Do you need it? Whether title insurance is right for you is something you should discuss with your lawyer, as it depends on the circumstances of your transaction. This article will provide you with some background information about title insurance to help you make an informed decision.

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Renting vs. Home Ownership

This is a decision which many people face, and the decision is not as easy to make as it may sound. As a homeowner, you can reasonably expect the equity in your home to increase over time as your mortgage is paid down. That, combined with regular appreciation in property values, can be a rapid and rewarding way to increase your net worth. In contrast, the person renting over the same amount of time is left with no property investment but may have enjoyed lower living expenses and the opportunity to invest in other opportunities.

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Making an Offer

When it comes time to make an offer you will require current market information and assistance in drafting your offer. You will need a Real Estate Professional.

A Real Estate Professional will communicate your 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 at the same time. A Real Estate Professional can guide you through this process.

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Land Transfer Tax

Purchasers in most large Canadian centres can add Land Transfer Taxes to their list of closing costs.

Unless you live in Alberta, Saskatchewan, or rural Nova Scotia, land transfer taxes (or property purchase tax) are a basic fact of life. These taxes, levied on properties that are changing hands, are the responsibility of the purchaser. Depending on where you live, taxes can range from a half a per cent to two per cent of the total value of the property.

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Elements of an Offer Explained

The size of a down payment can vary. Depending on the type of mortgage, down payments generally range from 5% to 20% of the purchase price. To obtain a conventional mortgage, home buyers are required to put down at least 20% of the purchase price or appraised value (whichever is less) as a down payment. If you don't have the necessary time or resources to save a full 20% down payment, you can choose a high-ratio mortgage and buy a home with a down payment of as little as 0%.

Read more: Elements of an Offer Explained

Down Payments

The size of a down payment can vary. Depending on the type of mortgage, down payments generally range from 5% to 20% of the purchase price. To obtain a conventional mortgage, home buyers are required to put down at least 20% of the purchase price or appraised value (whichever is less) as a down payment. If you don't have the necessary time or resources to save a full 20% down payment, you can choose a high-ratio mortgage and buy a home with a down payment of as little as 0%.

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Closing Costs

Closing costs are a list of charges your lawyer presents to you on the closing date of your home. Many people are surprised at the additional costs over and above the price of the home. According to the CMHC and Genworth Financial you should have at least 1.5% of the purchase price for closing costs in addition to the down payment (have around 2.5% to be on the safe side). The costs vary among provinces and cities.

Read more: Closing Costs

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