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Are you a First- Time Home buyer? Things you need to know

March 25, 2017

Buying your first home is always interesting. You are finally thinking of moving into your own home !!

It’s a process of transition and can be stressful yet challenging. You must set your priorities and decide on the kind of home that you plan to live in.

Do you want to move to bigger place further away or you like to stay put in your favorite neighborhood – those are the kind of questions that you need to ask yourself.

Talk to home owners- and these can be your family members or friends. They have gone through the process before and will be able to advise.

1. Location, Location, Location
You’ve probably heard the saying” birds of the same feather flock together”.

Yuppies (young urban professionals) are university educated people who want to live in a nice neighborhood that matches their standards of living. They want proximity to restaurants and nightlife.

If you are young family then you want to live in suburban environment where the kids can be near schools, amenities and can play outdoors when the weather is nice.

The top on your priority list will be a good neighborhood. A nice beautiful home in not so good neighborhood? Well, that probably not on your mind. Do your due diligence on crime rates, population density etc in the neighborhood that you plan to live.

Working with a good realtor who is familiar with a particular neighborhood will help narrowing down your choices and make better decisions.

2. What are you looking for in a home?
Depending on your choices, some want a newer home with little repairs as money may be tight. Others may just want to renovate to suit their needs, maybe remodel the kitchen or bathrooms.

The reality is many first time home buyers do not have the necessary finances (especially after all the cost of buying a home is involved).

Owning a home is a huge commitment — you will spend more than you wished. Costs may exceed budget and can lead to buyer’s remorse.

3. Weight the cost of home ownership
Owning a home in Canada is less affordable now based on a report on housing trends and affordability.

There’s more to consider than just a monthly mortgage payment. Ask any veteran home owner and you will be told that mortgage payments are only a portion of what it costs to own a home. Take into account utilities, insurances, property taxes, repairs and maintenance fees. And if you live in a townhouse or apartment complex -maintenance fees are payable monthly.

There’s a whole range of other expenses. Let’s look at a few – roofing contractor to fix a leak on the roof (with the heavy rainfall in Vancouver), a visit from a plumber to fix an unexpected leak that may lead to mold, furnace or boiler that needs to be serviced or upgraded.

If you choose to live in a suburban area and travel to Vancouver to work- add the costs of travel time and everyday living expenses.

4. Buying to flip?
You risk losing money unless you live in good part of town where the market is hot. The reality is prices started to cool down even before the government introduced the 15% to stem the uncontrollable influx of foreign currency that panicked many first time home buyers.

It is a known fact that most people will stay in a home for 5 years or longer. This is also the time it takes to benefit you financially.

Unless you have a rich mommy or daddy who will pick up the tab – you need to make smart financial choices for long term goals.

5. Property Disclosure and Inspections
Homeowners listing a property for sale in British Columbia will be asked to complete a detailed residential Property Disclosure Statement by the Realtor. This document will reduce chance of a misunderstanding by allowing sellers to advise buyers about the condition of the property.

With all the multiple offers last year home buyers were just betting their hard earned money and grabbing whatever they could bid on.

The situation is quite the same now in some markets, multiple offers are back. There is a huge influx into the suburbs in Lower Mainland and home buyers are giving cash offers on some homes in good neighborhoods.

A home seller must disclose potential problems with the property, but the homeowner may not always know or reveal existing problems.

The only way to truly know the condition of a home is to secure the services of an Accredited Home Inspector

Realtors must give a few names of a few different home inspectors to avoid conflict of interest. But the buyers must do their own research and pick their own home inspector.

The cheapest inspector might not be the best, as you are investing in a lot of money for your property. You need to ask questions rather than shop around for the best prices or simply go with the inspector referred by your realtor.

Call Peter- 778-552-8095

Peter Jesal is an Accredited Home Inspector and has inspected hundreds of homes all over the Lower Mainland. We offer a full range of services including Infrared ( Thermal Imaging Services as a Certified Level 1 Thermographer) and also a Certified Mold Inspector (Indoor Air Quality Services)

Tags: home inspection surrey, Home inspections in vancouver, home inspector vancouver, Maple Ridge home inspector
Peter Jesal
Peter Jesal

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