Getting Ready to Buy a Home: What You Need to Know

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Vancouver’s already bustling housing market is hotter than ever, with many first-time buyers choosing to take the leap and enter into homeownership. If you’re among the many couples that are ready to settle down, or are looking to upgrade your space in favour of gaining a little more room, BC’s Lower Mainland is an incredible place to call home.

While buying a new home is one of the most exciting experiences you’ll encounter, without the proper guidance, it can also be one of the most stressful. At Paperclip Law, we know just how valuable it is to have the right team on your side as you venture into homeownership, especially in a market as fast-paced and demanding as Vancouver’s. From first viewings to right before you sign on the dotted line, there’s a few things you’ll want to keep in mind. If you’re in the market for a new residence below is a quick guide of what you need to know and expect when purchasing a new property within British Columbia.

First Things First

One of the main things that catch renters turned buyers off guard is how many details you’ll need to juggle simultaneously while searching for your dream home. Before you book your first viewing, it’s important to do some research and determine not only what you truly want and need but to also prepare yourself to deal with the realities of house shopping. Factors you need to have in front of your mind while hunting include:

Market conditions: Market conditions play a much bigger role in determining the value of a property than you might expect, often in areas that you may not anticipate. Market conditions can, and often do fluctuate continuously, so you’ll want to stay on top of current standards before and while you search.

Subject Conditions: even though you may feel pressured to move quickly, always take your time when going through legal documentation for a house, especially terms and conditions. Remember: if it’s not in writing, it’s not concrete, and if you have any questions, never be afraid to speak up and ask. Having a lawyer on your side for this portion is extremely beneficial and ensures you won’t miss any last-minute details, as well as puts you in the best position possible to make an offer.

Building Inspection: Seriously considering a thorough inspection with a qualified inspector, no matter how new the home may be. What you don’t know about can cost you thousands down the line and this extra step is designed to protect you against countless headaches and unseen safety issues.

Make Your move

If you’re ready to put an official offer, there are a few extra details you’ll want to be aware of, beyond simply knowing if you qualify for Canada’s First Time Home Buyer’s Program. For example, you’ll want to set up your property insurance before your completion date, with coverage starting from that point forward. Additionally, you can expect to pay the following extra costs that couples are often unaware of in the beginning:

  • Property transfer tax
  • GST (where applicable)
  • Prorated property tax and strata fees
  • Title insurance or survey certificates (if required)
  • Insurance binder
  • Legal fees

If you’re ready to sign on the dotted line for your dream home, Paperclip Law is here to help. Contact us today to learn more!