Planning to buy your first home in BC but not sure about the actual costs? Two out of three families in BC own a house. That’s one of the highest rates in the world and for a good reason: owning property is a great investment. As the housing prices continue to rise, many first-time buyers feel unsure of how to start planning for their purchase. Here’s how to get started.
Get Approved & Secure A Loan
Some real estate agents won’t work with you until you’ve had your pre-approved loan for a mortgage. This is a vital step in the process of buying real estate. It is important to determine what type of insurance you need and what your plan covers. That is why the British Columbian government proposed a loan program for first-time buyers called the B.C. Home Owner Mortgage and Equity Partnership. This opportunity allows buyers to apply for a loan of up to $37,000 without interest for the first five years.
Get An Agent
Once you have the loan approval, you will need to start searching for a house. While hiring a real estate agent is not necessary, it is highly recommended for first-time owners. You will have someone who is knowledgeable about the current market and guide you through the entire process. In fact, a great agent will most likely have a network of credit counselors, inspectors, and insurance agents to give you the support you need.
Stay Within Your Budget
One of the best factors you will have to consider is your lifestyle and its requirements. You might be able to afford your own property, but you will also have to give up the high amounts of spending to pay off your mortgage. Consider your current living situation. Would you be able to afford your home if you suddenly lost your job?
If not, take time to improve your savings. If yes, decide on the type of property you are looking for and the location of choice. Be sure that you can afford to make the initial payments on time.
Be Willing to Compromise
You might have dreamed of a home with a large yard and open floor space in the best location of the city. However, these types of properties also come with a hefty price. In fact, as a first-time buyer, you may walk in a house with poor piping, wall damage, and an outdated kitchen. Just be sure to consider the size and layout of the property along with its current living condition.
Understand the Closing Costs
The balance of the purchase price will mostly come from your lender as part of your mortgage. You will also have to cover the cost of legal fees, title insurance, documents, property surveys, transfer taxes, and more. Be sure to make a list of all the fees to pay now and on a monthly basis. This will help you stay on top of your mortgage and make the shift easier.
Your lawyer will prepare a statement of adjustments to help you review your credit and debt situation. You will see not only the final costs of the home purchase but also help you determine what you truly can afford.