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Tips For First Time Home Buyers

Buying a home can be stressful, especially if you are not familiar with the process and all the extra costs that go along with the purchase. So whether you’re purchasing your first home or you’re moving up to your dream home, it’s important to be prepared and fully understand what’s involved. Follow these tips to ease some of the stress:

         
Research the market and know what you want 
It’s important to have a clear understanding of the current real estate market. This will give you an idea of which houses are over-priced and which are under-priced. It’s also important to know what you’re looking for in a home – are you looking for a condo, townhouse or a single family home? Sit down and write out your wish list.

Know your budget
It’s easy to over-spend when it comes to purchasing a house. Knowing your maximum will minimize stress for years to come.

Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage 
Getting pre-approved for a mortgage can save time and establish you as a serious buyer. Cambrian offers pre-approved mortgages at all of our 11 branches. Applying online simplifies the process even further.

Find an Agent
Finding the right real estate agent is important. You need to find someone who you can trust and that understands what you are looking for in a home. 

Attend open houses
Visiting open houses not only allows to you look at potential homes, it also helps you to better determine exactly what it is you are looking for in your new place. 

Be aware of additional costs
Buying a home costs more than just your mortgage payment. According to Credit Union Central of Canada, these are some of the added costs:

  • Down Payment: a minimum of 5% down is required to qualify for all new mortgages at Cambrian. 
  • Inspection Fee: Sometimes required prior to the completion of a purchase. If you’re buying an old home an inspection could reveal costly repairs, which may not be visible to the average buyer.
  • Legal Fees: Legal fees include the lawyer's fees plus any disbursements required to transfer the property to your name. These fees vary from lawyer to lawyer.
  • Survey Certificate: Required by Cambrian to ensure the house is situated on the lot within legal restrictions.
  • Tax Adjustments: You are responsible for paying your portion of the property taxes for the year.
  • Land Transfer Tax: This fee pays for the land title to be transferred into your name. 
  • Mortgage Insurance: If the down payment is less than 20% of the purchase price, an insurance premium on the mortgage amount is required.  
  • Life Insurance: Life insurance is optional, but important to have. It covers payments in the event of death of the mortgage-holder(s). 
  • Moving Costs: Moving costs can add up quickly, especially if you must rent a moving van or hire a moving company.
  • Utility Payments: In addition to your monthly utility bills, you may have to pay for service installations and hook-ups.