Tuesday, March 16, 2010

So You Wanna Buy Your First Place?

Today, we have a guest post from Nuno Lapirdo, Sales Representative with Right at Home Realty Inc.  He will be giving us Hip & Urban Girl’s some insight on buying our first place!

Part of the process of buying your first home is assessing what you can and cannot get based on your financials and market conditions. Learning to compromise and being realistic about your situation will be your greatest obstacle. Do you have Holt Renfrew dreams on an H&M budget?  Below are FIVE steps to make the most of your experience and come out on top!

Step 1: Financials--Determine what it will take to get into the market, what you are able to afford and the costs related to buying your first place.


 Understanding Market Conditions--is it a buyers or sellers market? Speak to your Realtor about market conditions and start receiving daily listings to see what you can expect.

 Mortgage Pre-Approval--what can you afford? Obtain a mortgage pre-approval by shopping around for the best rate. Negotiate the best terms by positioning one bank against the other--knowledge is power and in real estate knowledge is profit!

 Get Comfortable with the Numbers--what are the added expenses surrounding the buying process? Don’t forget to save up for closing costs!

Step 2: Your Search Criteria--Determine your search criteria and speak to your Realtor regarding the feasibility of obtaining all items on your list.


 Start Dreaming But Get Real--is your wish list realistic based on your budget? Don’t compromise your dreams but do remember that your Realtor is on your side and wants you to be happy--if s/he cannot find you “the perfect place” it may be time to rethink your search criteria. Stay positive.

Step 3: Legal Counsel--Do you have a lawyer on your team?


 Contact Your Lawyer--Having a lawyer readily available will allow you to quickly evaluate legal documents prior to signing. This is particularly important when purchasing a condo, as a status certificate may need to be reviewed.

Step 4: The Offer--Due to lack of inventory, historically low interest rates and strong consumer demand, the current real estate landscape is a sellers market. For best results, ensure that you have a pre-approval, strong deposit, lawyer to review documents and a flexible closing date. In a sellers market, there are often multiple offers so be ready to act fast and put your best offer forward.


 Understanding that Listing Price Doesn’t Equal Selling Price--depending on market conditions, you may be required to pay over asking in order to get your dream home. Your agent will research comparable properties to help you determine an appropriate offer. Stay within your comfort zone.

Step 5: Closing and Moving--Before you know it, your closing date approaches and it’s time to move. This is an exciting time and will usually require that you meet your lawyer at her office to pick up the keys to your new home. If you’re moving into a condo, make sure to book the service elevator well in advance.

 Get Packing--feeling the pinch? Recessionistas unite, consider moving yourself by asking friends and family to pitch in.

Nuno Lapirdo is a Realtor with Right at Home Realty Inc., Brokerage based out of Toronto, ON Canada. In addition to being an attentive Realtor, Nuno loves to talk investments, scope out new neighbourhoods and places to eat as well as spoiling his puppy, Stewie.  For a complete guide, entitled The Buying Process--A Five Step Guide and Related Checklist, please contact Nuno Lapirdo at nlapirdo@trebnet.com or (416) 799-1999.

Follow him on Twitter @digi_Nu

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