Buying a home in Ontario can be a very exciting and rewarding process, if you know what you’re doing.
Not only is Ontario one of the most beautiful places to live in Canada, but it’s also one of the best places in the country to own a home.
Over the course of a year, we (The Hewitt Jancsar Team) will play a part in an average of 120 real estate transactions (purchases and sales). About 2/3 of those (80) involve assisting buyers’ make a purchase, of which half (40) are first-time buyers’.
Given that such a large percentage of our business consists of newcomers, we’re happy to share information that could help you save time and money when you finally decide to take the plunge.
Some Valuable Advice for First Time Home Buyers
In the real estate world those who classify as first time home buyers’ have access to a number of “free” resources that repeat home buyers do not?
You see, the majority of Canadians fall into what is called the “middle class economy” and don’t ever see themselves owning a home because of a preconception that since homes cost a lot they must be unattainable, but what most people in this situation don’t realize is the vast array of mortgage products available to them, making it possible for almost anyone to become a homeowner in Ontario.
So, what’s the valuable advice?
If owning a home is a dream of yours, act on it! It might be more attainable than you think.
Thanks to the many first time home owner programs and flexible mortgage products that help make home ownership a possibility for so many, real estate professionals often provide first time buyers with no-cost services, including initial consultations, professional advice and recommendations, insurance quotes, and even professional representation should you eventually decide to buy a home, all in an effort to help prospective first time home buyers become first time homeowners with as little friction as possible.
If you’re thinking about becoming a homeowner, you can likely find some free help and/or resources in the following areas when starting your house hunt:
Whether you decide to visit a big bank or an independent broker, they’ll more than likely provide you with a ton of valuable information about what mortgage products suit you best, and what the likelihood is that you’ll get approved.
With a new home and mortgage comes the need for new insurance, and your local insurance agent will be more than happy to provide you with coverage suggestions and quotes based on your needs.
If you’ve ever dealt with a lawyer, you know their time seems more valuable than the Prime Ministers! However, thanks to the internet and a number of thoughtful legal professionals, websites such as LegalLine.ca provide a wealth of free information pertaining to real estate among other areas.
When the time finally arrives to begin looking for the perfect home to buy, do not hesitate to enlist a the help of a professional Realtor to represent you in your purchase, after all it doesn’t cost you a penny!
Real Estate Commission for First Time Home Buyers
After spending so many years in the real estate industry it’s hard to believe that so many first time buyers remain unaware of their option to retain professional representation from their Realtor of choice when embarking on their journey to homeownership. To this day one of the most common questions asked by first time buyers is:
How much commission do I have to pay when I buy a home?
Zero! Zip! Zilch!
That’s right! If you’re buying a home in Ontario, 100% of the commission paid to a broker or realtor upon the purchase/sale of a home is paid by the seller!
How to make the most of your first time home buyer privileges
Not a month goes by where we don’t receive a call from an eager home buyer asking about “inventory in a particular neighbourhood”, or “homes in a specific price range”. Needless to say we treat each of these opportunities like a potential client, proceeding to collect a name and phone number before setting off the to compile the requested information.
As it turns out, the majority of these inquiries are from first time home buyers who have no idea that they can enlist a realtor to “home shop” on their behalf. Even worse, in most cases we learn that they’ve bought a home shortly after contacting us, and that they did the whole thing without a Realtor on their side.
By not enlisting a Realtor to represent you in your purchase, you risk things like paying too much, or even worse, buying a home in an undesirable neighbourhood or in an area that doesn’t suit your current lifestyle or future plans, not to mention the risks associated with the home itself.
You see, just because you as a home buyer don’t pay a realtor directly, doesn’t mean you can’t still “hire” one to represent you.
On the contrary!
Buyers’, especially first-time buyers’ should definitely enlist the help of a realtor when buying a home, if not to save valuable time, then for the following 5 reasons:
Reasons to enlist the help of a Realtor when buying a home
Buying a home is unlike any other purchase you’ll ever make in your lifetime. In essence, you’re buying a piece of the earth, and that doesn’t come without some (a lot) or red tape!
If for no other reason on this list, hire a realtor just for their industry knowledge, and you’ll sleep better at night knowing that your transaction was handled correctly.
In the world of real estate, experience is priceless.
A seasoned realtor will often have inside knowledge of cities, towns and neighbourhoods that often times will prove invaluable to a first time home buyer, not to mention the “intuition” that comes with being around homes everyday for 10 or more years.
Believe it or not. but the MLS is not the “Holy Grail” of real estate listings.
It often takes up to a week or longer for a home to even make it onto the MLS, meaning without a realtor and their network of other realtors, your “dream home” might be sold before you even know it was on the market.
Realtors get paid to shop for homes, you don’t!
As exciting as it can be to look at home after home online or in the paper, that’s valuable time that you could be spending doing what you love, or not doing anything at all!
#5 Negotiation Skills
Depending on your objectives, this one trait could be the deal breaker for you when faced with whether or not to enlist a realtor to help with your home purchase.
Between the three of us at The Hewitt Jancsar Team, we’ve been able to negotiate deals for our clients that save them tens of thousands of dollars! Money that they would’ve otherwise had to pay if they wanted the home and didn’t know better.
Money is a funny thing, and people will often do nasty things to get more of it, which is why having a realtor you can trust negotiate your deal is so important.
Wrapping it up
All it takes is one flip through a Sunday paper to realize just how many of us realtors there are in your city! And if you’ve never bought a home before I don’t blame you for wanting to avoid choosing just one to represent you in your purchase.
However, as I’m sure your parents taught you as a child, avoiding something doesn’t make it go away, and in this situation avoiding establishing a relationship with a realtor when buying a home doesn’t just not make it go away, but it likely makes it a more expensive and costly transaction in the end.
So the next time you’re browsing MLS or reading the Sunday paper, don’t hesitate to pick a face you like or a name you know and give them a call. They’ll be glad you did.