Once you have the other steps complete (figuring out your mortgage options and finances), it is time to find the right home for your needs now and in the future.
The home you choose now is going to be a part of your life for quite some time and unless you move, your entire lifetime. Take into consideration the following options when choosing:
- Size. Size is more than just square footage. Consider if you want to add more to your family and will need more bedrooms and baths. Is a garage something you must have? What about having enough storage?
- Location. Keep in mind distance to things you may wish to be near like schools, shopping, parks, etc. A city house or a country house? Only you can decide where the best location is for your needs.
- Lifestyle. Lifestyle falls under location and size somewhat – do you want to be near church or parks where children can play? Do you plan on extending your family and will need more room or will soon be an empty-nester?
- Special Features. Special features encompass things like a swimming pool, a “green” home, an energy efficient home, or anything that is a little extra that you want included in your home.
Buy or Build?
There are plenty of reasons to buy a home that has previously been owned but for some, building a new home is the right choice.
- New Home. A new home allows you to move in as soon as it is finished and you have the ability to live in a home that no one else has used. The drawbacks are that it is not specifically built to your specifications and you may have to wait if it is not finished.
- Previously Owned Home. Buying a home that someone else is selling is sometimes a better bargain that building your own or buying a new home. However, keep in mind that you are getting someone’s choices that may not be your own. You also want to make sure that the home is in good condition and that you do not have to spend a lot on repairs or renovations.
- Building a Home. While building your own home allows you to make it exactly how you want it, keep in mind that this is typically a larger investment and you will need to be patient while it is being built so time and money are considerations.
- Buying a Condo. There are entirely different considerations when buying a condo and you can find out more with this handy condo guide. According to statistics, between 2006 and 2011, one in five households chose a condominium in Canada as their residence.
Searching for Your Home
There are plenty of ways you can start your search for a new home:
- A real estate agent
- Word of mouth
- Social media
- Internet searches including real estate listings
- Real estate magazines
- “For Sale” signs
Who Can Help?
When buying a new home, you want experienced professionals who help you make the right decisions. Here are the terms and people to be familiar with:
- Real Estate Agent
- Lawyer or Notary
- Insurance Broker
- Home Inspector
- Home Appraiser
- Builder or Contractor (for new homes being built)
- Land Surveyor
You may not need every professional listed. For instance, if you are not building a home then you will not need a builder or contractor unless you are doing renovations. If you plan to look for a home on your own, you may not need a real estate agent.
The most important thing is to do your research and ask questions. Use the professionals so that you the most education on one of the most important decisions of your life.
Oakville Real Estate Law is one of the top firms in Canada for real estate transactions. The firm’s team led by Robert Rose has worked on thousands of transactions the years and have the knowledge and experience you need. For more information on what you need to know about being able to afford a home, please contact us and we will be glad to help.