Purchasing a home and home ownership can be a complex ordeal. It can be particularly tough when embarking on a solo homeownership journey as a newly single person. On the other hand, buying a house or condo can be a great investment and is a great step moving forward to your new life. These 5 tips for buying will help ensure that you have the resources to stay savvy and informed throughout the entire process.
Tie Up Loose Ends
Make sure that your name is no longer on the marital home mortgage. This point cannot be emphasized enough. Not dealing with this formality can negatively affect you years down the line. Review your credit record, fix any mistakes, and pay off any debt you can.
Bonus: If you’ve recently sold your marital home, you can set aside some of that money for the down payment and up-front costs.
Know Your Budget & Stay Within It
First, consider your monthly mortgage payments, including principal, interest, real estate taxes, and homeowner insurance. Consider the cost of moving itself. Second, consider your total amount of debt (mortgage, credit cards, car payments, student loans, money owed to divorce lawyers, etc.) If you need to get your credit score in shape, see our blog post here. After all those considerations, make sure that you have adequate and steady on-going income to qualify for a mortgage loan at a competitive interest rate. Be sure to look into any new mortgage rules as well.
Keeping a home can be costly, and repairs, renovation and other recurring should be taken into account. One must also consider the physicality of the property’s upkeep, such as maintaining the following: a yard/garden, the plumbing, appliances, heating/air conditioning systems, exterior drainage/gutters, insulation, chimney (if applicable), winter gear (sidewalk salt & shovels), electricity, etc. In short, make sure you can manage the responsibilities that apply to you.
Research Research Research
Choose the right home type for you. Consider resale value, and the longevity of your living situation. Take all variables into deliberation: future partners, family expansion, job relocation, retirement, etc.
Find an Agent
It is pivotal to find a trustworthy realtor or real estate team that can guide you through the entire home buying process. Crowd source an agent via social media to get a more personalized suggestion from your close friends and family. Search for agents that specialize in the neighbourhood you’re looking at. Take the time to read the agents’ reviews and testimonials. A positive agent review on a solo purchase would be ideal. Once you have a few real estate agent options, meet with each of them in person, and ask them lots of questions. Once you’ve decided on an agent, you’ll sign a Buyers Representation Agreement.
Although you’re buying a home for yourself, you’re not in this alone! Consult your agent and your lawyer if you are ever unsure or have any questions. House hunt with your close friends and family, and use simple checklists to help.
Make your loved ones part of the process, and ultimately ensure that everything is personally catered to you!
To learn more and discuss your options, book a private confidential consultation with Gina, at Gina@HillisGroup.ca or text 416-315-8019.