BUYER GUIDE 101
SMART REAL ESTATE PURCHASING DECISIONS HAVE THE POWER TO TRANSFORM LIVES
Pierre is passionate about using real estate to not only find the perfect home for your needs, but also to use it as a means to build wealth and ensure your financial independence.
With over 10 years of real estate expertise, Pierre knows how to listen and understand your needs and concerns. He will create and execute a smart strategy that meets your purchasing goals and achieves your home-owning priorities.
His personal success in real estate began when he was 18 and purchased his first home; by the age of 23, he had six investment properties in his portfolio. Now, as a professional real estate broker, he’s built upon those excellent investment returns and has helped hundreds of clients make smart real estate purchasing decisions as well. Let Pierre guide you to the same real estate success.
OBTAIN A MORTGAGE PRE-APPROVAL
Offers can be made confidently with uncertainty eliminated, and a pre-approval clarifies your monthly mortgage carrying costs to ensure there are no surprises. A potential lender will require you to show your income, credit history, and to disclose your debts. Once approved, you will receive a letter that includes an interest rate guarantee that is typically valid for 90 or 120 days.
IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER
A mortgage pre-approval doesn’t guarantee the property chosen will be financed. Before advancing your mortgage money, the lender will most likely order an independent appraisal of the property.
SMART HOUSE HUNTING
When beginning your search, think about your lifestyle, how long you plan to live in the home, and any possible life changes you might foresee in the future. Also consider
• What areas or neighbourhoods do you love?
• How many bedrooms and bathrooms do you need?
• What are your absolute must-haves in a home?
These considerations help you narrow down the list of potential homes to see and importantly, they keep you focused throughout the search process. Our team will set up a customized search based on your individual criteria for you on MLS® and send you a list of property matches daily.
HAVE YOUR DEPOSIT MONEY AVAILABLE
In Toronto’s red-hot real estate market, access to your deposit money is essential. Having your deposit funds ready with your offer tells the Seller that you mean business. While your wish list is critical, it’s our job to keep you grounded ensuring that what you want aligns with what you can afford.
NETWORKING: FINDING THE HIDDEN GEMS
A key strategy Pierre employs is to engage with his network of agents. On countless occasions, he has learned about a property becoming available before it hits the market. Discovering exclusive opportunities allows you the chance to make an offer before the masses ever set eyes on the listing.
SCHEDULING THE VIEWINGS
Once you’ve selected the properties you want to view, just let us know. Our team takes care of scheduling and ensures that showings are at times that are convenient for you. It’s our philosophy that in order for you to make a confident and well-informed purchasing decision, you should see a wide range of properties to truly understand what’s available in your price range.
NAVIGATING COMPETITIVE MARKETS
Deciding to purchase a home you love is both exciting and nerve-racking, especially for buyers in Toronto’s intensely competitive market. Demand is extremely high, but supply is low with a shortage of available inventory, which means that homes sell very quickly. Depending on the area, a listing can be sold in as little as one day, with multiple offers.
You can rest assured that we will always represent your best interests and present your offer using strategies that best position you for success. We just ask that you be ready to take decisive action once you know that a property is right for you and to ensure that your deposit money is readily accessible.
COMPARATIVE MARKET ANALYSIS
To determine the true value of a property, we look to see what other similar properties have been trading for in that area. That way you can confidently substantiate your offer price.
CURRENT MARKET CLIMATE
Assessing the state of the market will gear your strategy and determine what approach should be used to get the best price.
Do we need to be aggressive or can we negotiate based on excessive inventory?
WHAT LEVERAGE DO WE HAVE?
An experienced realtor will look for opportunities to leverage in negotiations. For example, if they know the closing date of the seller is important, then you can use that as a bargaining chip to low-ball your offer.
THE FOUR TYPES OF OFFERS
No.1 CONDITIONAL SALE [Agree on the Terms with Conditions]
The transaction enters what is known as the Conditional Period. Common conditions include a home inspection, mortgage financing, or status certificate review, among others. If all of the conditions are fulfilled to the buyer’s satisfaction, the Conditional Period ends and you now have a firm transaction. If the conditions are not fulfilled, the deposit is returned to the buyer and both parties are released from the transaction.
No.2 COUNTER-OFFER [The Seller signs back a Counter-Offer]
This is a common scenario where the Seller signs backs the offer and proposes a different set of terms, such as a higher asking price or a different closing date. Typically, there are a number of back-and-forth negotiations, which is when having a strong realtor on your side is crucial to a successful outcome.
No.3 FIRM SALE [The Buyer and Seller agree on Terms with no Conditions]
If there are no conditions, the agreement is considered firm as soon as the agreement is signed and the deposit paid.
No.4 NO SALE [The Buyer and Seller are unable to agree on Terms]
Sometimes, your offer may be unacceptable to the Seller and they might choose not to pursue further negotiations. In this case, the deposit is returned to you and the search continues.
IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER
A deposit of 5% of the purchase price is the norm in our marketplace and is what the Seller will be expecting. Unless otherwise indicated in the offer paperwork, the deposit money is required within 24 hours of acceptance of your offer.
UNDERSTANDING ADDITIONAL COSTS
If your down payment is less than 20% of the purchase price, then the lender will charge you mortgage insurance. The insurance amount is based on your purchase price and varies according to your deposit. Mortgage insurance will be highest when your deposit is low and drops as you put more down towards the purchase price. You can find the CMHC calculator here.
We also recommend that you keep what we like to call an, “OH, SH*T” Fund to pay for any unexpected maintenance costs that may arise, particularly if you are buying an older home. Even with a thorough home inspection, unexpected sh*t does happen and no one wants to get stuck without the funds needed for repairs.
Other costs to budget for are Title Insurance, Land Transfer Tax, Lawyer fees, Movers, and any desired Renovations.
IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER
In Toronto, there is a double Land Transfer Tax; one provincial and one municipal. You can calculate the amount of tax you will be required to pay here.
THE DAYS LEADING UP TO THE CLOSING DATE ARE CRITICAL
Once all of the legal and financial obligations have been met, ownership and possession of the property are transferred from the Seller to you, meaning that both you and the Seller have agreed on price and agreement terms, you’ve submitted your deposit, and all conditions have been waived.
During the closing process, you will be working closely with your lawyer and your lender. There will be a lot of paperwork to sign, and you will be making final arrangements with your lender to receive a certified cheque with the balance of the funds owed. Once the cheque is delivered, it will be time to pick up your keys.
CONTINUED CONCIERGE SERVICES
Our team is here to assist you with any of your real estate-related needs. You tell us what you want and we will arrange a service provider to assist you. From moving arrangements and boxes, to house cleaning and picking up keys, we are here to alleviate stress and give you peace of mind knowing that all of the details are taken care of. Knowledge is king, and we want you to always be informed. When you purchase with us we will send you semi-annual Current Market Analysis reports so you’re always up to date with your current property value.