Private Client Services™ (PCS) allows you to setup specific search criterion, then notifies you in REAL-TIME by email or text when a new listing matching your specific criterion hits the market. You will know in real-time when a property you are following has a price reduction or sells and for how much!
Why do you need sold prices?
Well, anyone can list any property at any price – it’s what the property sells for that matters! Access to sold prices will enable you to monitor the market in your area of interest, compare list prices versus sold prices, and help you identify good value.
PCS shows you far more information than you will see on Realtor.ca, such as days on market, strata fees, zoning information, extra photos, sale prices, and much more. In fact, you can select 51 different criterion!
Importantly, PCS is updated in real-time! It takes 32-76 hours before this information is updated on Realtor.ca, so you will have a head start on other buyers!
And it's 100% FREE!
Register now for Private Client Services™
Basics for First-Time Home Buyers
If you’re like most first-time home buyers, your sole focus has been on saving for that coveted down payment. But there are additional costs beyond the down payment that take some people by surprise, so make sure you set aside money for the following expenses. Setting money aside for these additional expenditures means it might take a little longer to get into that dream home, but you'll be glad you waited. Unexpected purchase costs can quickly turn an exciting time into a stressful experience.
Before you start the house-hunting process, there’s an important step you can take to save you time and make the process smoother: getting pre-approved for a mortgage. A pre-approval determines the home price you can afford which allows you to budget for your home purchase and focuses your home search. With a pre-approval you’ll also be able to lock in a mortgage rate in case rates increase during your home search.
Applying for a mortgage pre-approval is free and it doesn’t commit you to one single lender. However, getting pre-approved does guarantee that the mortgage rate you are offered by a lender will not change for 120 to 160 days. By “locking in” your rate, you’re protected if interest rates rise while you’re shopping for a home. If interest rates go down during this time, your lender will honour the lower rate.
Goods and Services Tax (GST) and Property Transfer Tax (PTT)
As a home buyer, you're responsible for paying a property purchase tax, calculated at a rate of one per cent on the first $200,000 of the property's fair market value and two per cent on the rest. For example, you can expect to pay around $8,000 in taxes on a property valued at $500,000. Keep in mind that when your lawyer registers the property at the Land Title Office, you're responsible for paying property transfer tax at that time. In other words, you lawyer will want this money before you get the mortgage funds from your bank, so you need to have it on hand.
Calculate the GST and PTT in various scenarios
An inspection is an essential component of buying a new home. Anyone who has seen a Mike Holmes television show knows there is plenty of shoddy construction out there, and you don't want to end up with a house needing expensive repairs or restoration. Obtaining a home inspection is recommended for both new construction and older homes. While renovating a fixer-upper can be a great strategy for getting into the housing market at a lower price point, renovation costs can quickly add up. A home inspection will help ensure you know what you're getting into when buying a home that needs extensive work. Expect to pay about $400 for a Home Inspection.
In the Comox Valley, you might want to consider using one of the following Home Inspectors:
Clarity Home Inspections (Gary Dry)
Tamarack Home Inspections (Rick Tae)
To make your home purchase official, you'll need a lawyer's or notary's signature. Expect to pay $1,000 to $1,500 in legal fees.
Lending institutions often require an appraisal before approving your mortgage, which will cost between $200 and $400.
Lenders may also need a current property survey if one doesn't exist; you can expect to pay between $200 and $400 for this service.
You likely won’t be able to secure a mortgage without home insurance. The cost for this depends on many variables, such as the age and condition of the home, as well as what contingencies you'd like covered. On average, Canadians pay $840 annually for their home insurance. However, prices vary across provinces. The highest level of home insurance premiums is in British Columbia averaging $924 annually.