That’s it, you’ve made your decision: you’re buying a house! For many people, this is an important and somewhat stressful step. There are indeed a thousand things to think about before you start. Planning the purchase of a house requires a good dose of organisation and foresight. To help you in this planning, this article gives you a reminder of the main elements that must be considered before buying a home.
What are the 10 things to plan before buying a house?
- Find a Trusted Mortgage Broker
Do you know that a mortgage broker is a very useful resource that must be contacted before you even plan to buy a home? Indeed, by studying your file and doing a prequalification with it, you will be able to evaluate your finances and your borrowing capacity. This will give you valuable guidance for planning the purchase of your home and improving the chances of acceptance of the mortgage. In addition, the broker will also help you to find the best financial institution according to the proposed rate, loan term, etc.
- Check the location you are interested in
Even if you are in love with an area, it is always ideal to analyse the neighbourhood. Indeed, to plan the purchase of a house, it is also to verify that you will be able to live serenely and with happiness. If you are a family, for example, check the accessibility of schools, parks and businesses. If you are calm in nature, avoid busy areas. Whatever your profile, think about your needs and choose an area that suits you.
- Choose a Real Estate Broker
Before you even start shopping, choose a trusted real estate broker who operates in the desired area. Try to find out if he is going further in his services and if he can advise you on several aspects of the transaction. Know that a professional broker will work with you to identify your needs, your budget, your preferences and help you find the gem. Because it will help you in your research, your real estate broker will save you a lot of energy and it will leave you with more time to plan the purchase of your home!
- Plan renovations and their cost
Once you have found a home that interests you, it is likely that work will be needed. First, find out how much you will pay to change it to your liking. During the visits, take photos, measurements and all the information that you think is relevant. Then ask professionals and contractors to evaluate the cost of the work. This will help you plan your home purchase before you even make an offer. If the total price of renovations and the house exceeds your budget, you will not be caught off guard!
- Be attentive during open tours
Opening your eyes and ears during the visits will allow you to make a first selection for the purchase of your home. Of course, this is not a formal inspection and it will be wise to book a building, property & house inspection if the property really interests you. However, be attentive to certain details. Look at the bottom of the walls, especially in the basement, to spot traces of mold. Check if the windows are fogged, if the foundation seems cracked and the condition of the exterior cladding.
- Learn about the history of the house
A house with a normal appearance can have a story. Cannabis cultivation, violent death, water damage or even a recurring problem associated with the building. Do your own investigation and do not be embarrassed to ask specific questions to the seller, the real estate broker and various neighbours. If it’s a new home, do not just rely on the modern look of the place, because even newer buildings can be defective. Instead, opt for the peace of mind offered by the pre-delivery inspection
- Confirm the insurability of the house
This is a detail that is often overlooked but will be very useful for planning the purchase of a house. Indeed, it can happen that an insurance company refuses to insure a property. It can sometimes be the history of the house, as in cases of repeated floods. In other cases, it is the area that is considered dangerous and risky. A little phone call to verify the insurability will confirm you in your intentions to buy the house.
- Plan the costs associated with buying the house
When planning the purchase of a house and its finances, it is important to include the many departure costs. Not only there is the move, the inspection, the welcome tax, the notary’s fees, the change of address of the service companies, the property and school taxes. At the end of the day, these amounts can be a big part of your budget, if you have not planned them before buying the house.
- Include the costs associated with daily living before buying the house
While you have your calculator in your hands, also try to predict the monthly or annual fees for your future home. This calculation will help you establish your budget and plan the purchase of a home that fits your needs. For example, an old house will cost you probably more in heating than a recent construction. Or if you are buying a condo, find out about condo fees for the contingency fund. This approach will allow you to be more financially comfortable and avoid the unexpected.
- Find a qualified building inspector before buying a house.
You have planned the purchase of a house, respected the advice of this list and are now ready to move forward? Contact your building inspector once the offer to purchase is accepted. Most of the time, you will have a few days (7) to have your home inspected. Scheduling an appointment with your building inspector is therefore wise: you will ensure its availability and enjoy a report well done.
In addition, if the inspector finds serious problems in the house, this could justify the withdrawal of your offer. This additional protection is therefore essential. Be aware that home inspection is also recommended in winter, even when many places are snow-covered and inaccessible. To learn more about winter inspections, read an article on this topic.
Planning the purchase of your home is the key!
As you have seen, planning for a home is the key to your peace of mind and long-term peace of mind. The more you know in advance, the more you avoid the risk of unpleasant surprises. This will ensure that your dream home stays a long time. That is why it is important carry out a detailed inspection and to give you a report that validates the state of your future investment.