Buying Your First Home
As you are thinking of buying your first home in Edmonton, and for the purchase to be the happy and satisfying experience it is meant to be, here is some helpful information to make sure that you are financially and emotionally prepared for the responsibilities that come with homeownership. While homeownership has many advantages, it is associated with the responsibilities of a mortgage, property taxes and maintenance expenses.
We would be happy to discuss your real estate goals and any questions you may have in regard to purchasing your first home. Here are some of the topics you should be familiar with before you start your home search. Our goal as your buyer's representative is to guide you through the process from starting
Am I ready to buy?
Owning your home has many advantages. Often, the monthly payments for a mortgage, property taxes and maintenance are similar to, or in some cases lower than paying rent. In addition to the financial benefits of building equity in your investment, there is an important emotional factor that makes homeownership so valuable and desirable.
How much can I afford?
Before you set your eyes on the home of your dreams, it is important to know how much you can afford to buy and own. It is important that you discuss your financial qualifications with a professional lender and get pre-approved for a mortgage amount before you even start with your search. That way your search will be much more focused and realistic and when and when you are ready to make an offer on a property, a pre-approval letter is an indication that you are a serious buyer.
We would be happy to refer you to one of the many experienced lenders we work with. In an initial conversation or meeting with a lender, you will learn the process of applying for a mortgage and important terms such as your debt-to-income ratio.
- Pre-Qualification: Meet with a mortgage broker and find out how much you can afford to pay for a home.
- Pre-Approval: While knowing how much you can afford is the first step, sellers will be much more receptive to potential buyers who have been pre-approved. You'll also avoid being disappointed when going after homes that are out of your price range. With Pre-Approval, the buyer actually applies for a mortgage and receives a commitment in writing from a lender. This way, assuming the home you're interested in is at or under the amount you are pre-qualified for, the seller knows immediately that you are a serious buyer for that property. Costs for pre-approval are generally nominal and lenders will usually permit you to pay them when you close your loan.
We are here to help.
You need a good agent who will work hard for you. A buyer's agent has the fiduciary responsibility to represent only the buyer's best interest throughout the home-buying process. We are dedicated to helping you find the right home at the best price. We want you to find the home that will make you happy and successful in real estate ownership.
- List of Needs & Wants: Make 2 lists. The first should include items you must have (i.e., the number of bedrooms you need for the size of your family, a one-story house if accessibility is a factor, etc.). The second list is your wishes - things you would like to have (pool, den, etc.) but that are not absolutely necessary. Realistically for first-time buyers, you probably will not get everything on your wish list, but it will keep you on track for what you are looking for.
- Representation by a Professional: Consider hiring your own real estate agent, one who is working for you, the buyer, not the seller.
- Focus & Organization: In a convenient location, keep handy the items that will assist you in maximizing your home search efforts. Such items may include:
- One or more detailed maps with your areas of interest highlighted.
- A list or file of the properties that your agent has shown to you.
- Paper and pen for taking notes as you search.
- A camera to snap pictures of homes you have toured to help you remember your favorites and features you really liked.
- Visualize the house empty & with your decor: Are the rooms laid out to fit your needs? Is there enough light?
- Be Objective: Instead of thinking with your heart when you find a home, think with your head. Does this home really meet your needs? There are many houses on the market, so don't make a hurried decision that you may regret later.
- Be Thorough: A few extra dollars well spent now may save you big expenses in the long run. Don't forget such essentials as:
- Include inspection & mortgage contingencies in your written offer.
- Has the property been inspected by a professional inspector?
- Request a second walk-through to take place within 24 hours of closing.
- You want to check to see that no changes have been made that were not agreed on (i.e., a nice chandelier that you assumed came with the sale has been replaced by a cheap ceiling light).
Keep your objectives in mind when visiting a home.
We will schedule the appointment for you and accompany you to the showing. It is a good idea to keep a list of features you need and want in a home. After the showing, your agent will review the pros and cons of the home with you in order to stay focused on finding the home that meets your requirements.
Make an offer.
Once you have found the home you would like to purchase, it is time to submit an offer. Your dedicated agent will prepare the contract and all necessary forms and present the written offer on your behalf. When responding to counteroffers, the negotiation skills of your agent will ensure that you get the home at the best possible price.
Order a home inspection.
After a purchase price has been agreed upon and the contract is signed, it is necessary to conduct an inspection by a licensed and professional inspector. The seller will have to address any deficiencies that may come up during an inspection by making the necessary repairs or giving a credit at closing. Your attorney will work with you to find a solution that's acceptable to all parties. We can recommend many qualified inspectors for you.
Do a final walk-through before closing the deal.
We will walk the property with you one more time the day before closing to make sure that everything is completed as agreed prior to the final signing.
From the first interview when we determine your requirements to the moment you receive the keys to your new home, we will help you with the complicated process of buying a home. Don't hesitate to contact us to find out more about how we can make your home-buying process easy!
Searching For A Home Is Only The Beginning
As a buyer's representative, your broker has the expertise to help you find the perfect home in the perfect location to meet your real estate goals. Using a blend of high-tech and high-touch tools, we make sure you get timely information about properties along with local insight and guide you through the process from offer to closing.
All the above may seem rather overwhelming. That is why having a professional represent you and keep track of all the details for you is highly recommended.
Representation and Relationship
A Buyer's Agent has a fiduciary responsibility to represent only the buyer's best interest throughout the home buying process.
Our Services Include:
Analysis and Research
- Needs Assessment
- Property Search
- Mobile App Search
- Broker Networking & Tours
- Showing Appointments
- Property Viewing & Feedback
- Open House List
- New Listing Alerts
Negotiations & Management
- Contract Insight
- Disclosure Review
- Offer Strategy
- Presenting Offers
- Home Inspections
- Post-Contract Negotiations
- Coordinating with Attorney, Lender
- Closing Costs Estimate
- Reviewing Inspection Repairs
- Neighborhood Research
- Local Knowledge & Maps
- School Rankings
- Market Trends
- Community Reports
Please contact us directly to discuss any of these matters in further detail.