15 Jul

8 CONSIDERATIONS FOR THE FIRST TIME HOME BUYER

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Posted by: Sarah Bate

8 CONSIDERATIONS FOR THE FIRST TIME HOME BUYER

Top 8 Benefits of Using a Mortgage Broker1. Create yourself a Budget and stick to it, so you can keep your finances on track. Planning a budget will help you identify uneconomical expenditures and help you achieve your financial goals. Having a budget can also decrease your stress levels, prepare you for unexpected costs and help you plan for your future of home ownership.

Some of the things you should consider in a budget are all your sources of income, mortgage payment, all loans, condo fees, utilities, cable, internet, phone bills, credit card debts, entertainment expenses, clothing, food, transportation expenses, Insurance (auto, house, life), personal grooming, pet care, donations, child care and an emergency fund which can assist in those unexpected costs like an exterior leak, plumbing issues or just those unforeseen repairs and maintenance issues that could arise.

2. Before you start looking at homes, meet with your Mortgage Broker so they can assist you in figuring out how much home you can afford, get you pre-approved for a mortgage loan and give you the information you need for planning and preparing to save for your down payment. It can be very disappointing to find your dream home only to find out you don’t qualify.

During your qualification period and before you purchase a home, avoid making any big purchases like a new car or buying furniture as these expenses will have to be factored into your debt servicing ratios and could seriously jeopardize your loan approval.

3. Part of your budget plan is to know and consider the additional costs before the purchase of your home. Legal fees, mortgage insurance premiums, life and disability Insurance, Fire Insurance, house insurance, strata fees, appraisal, home inspection, property survey, moving costs, appliances, home maintenance equipment, purchase deposit, down payment, GST if it’s a new construction, property tax, and possibly property transfer taxes. The amount of this property transfer tax will depend on your province and the amount of your home purchase price.

4. Your realtor should be someone you can trust, who understands your needs and will take the time to educate you through the home buying process and the current real estate market conditions in your chosen area.

Your realtor will provide a variety of services to make the complexity of purchasing a home seamless. For example, they will arrange appointments of potential homes, assist in the Contract Of Purchase And Sale agreements, obtain and review the strata minutes, negotiate the home offer on your behalf, inform you of facilities and public services that are available in your neighborhood and current future zoning regulations. Simply, they will streamline the biggest investment purchase that you will ever make.

5. Have your home or strata property inspected. This is one of the most important steps to consider when buying a home, to make sure your home is a sound investment and a safe place to live. If significant defects are revealed by a home inspection, you can back out of your offer, free of penalty, within a certain time frame. Condominium buyers will tend to focus on the Form B certificate that will identify any major issues and costs by the condominium corporation.

6. If there is anything unclear to you while you are preparing the Contract Of Purchase And Sale have the Purchase And Sale Agreement reviewed by your real estate attorney before signing this legal document.

7. Subject Clauses on your Offer To Purchase is highly recommended, especially for first time home buyers. For example a

  • subject to a satisfactory home inspection
  • subject to arranging your mortgage financing

It is of great significance to know that “subject clauses” do not “elude” you to avoid your legal responsibilities in the contract and you must make every attempt to fulfill the conditions that you have set. During this time, it is the seller’s discretion to continue to accept other offers even after the seller has accepted your offer with subjects.

8. On Closing Day, all parties will sign the papers at the lawyer’s office, officially sealing the deal. This is the day that ownership of the property will be transferred to you. On this day it is your job to provide your mortgage broker with your lawyer’s information, as they will be the ones to forward a copy of the Purchase And Sale Agreement to your lawyer as well as inform your lender of your lawyer’s information.

Proof of insurance will need to be obtained, so arrange your Home Insurance before closing and bring the policy with you to your appointment, have your certified cheque or bank draft with closing balance payable to the lawyer’s firm’s trust account, a VOID cheque or a pre-authorized payment form and bring two pieces of valid identification with you like a valid driver’s license or passport. The second piece of identification can be your social insurance card, birth certificate or credit card from a major bank.

Closing funds will be arranged by your lawyer to the seller’s lawyer, the transfer and mortgage will be registered and you will be given the keys to your new home! Finally you take possession.

There are many aspects to consider with your mortgage and home purchase so it would be wise to contact your trusted Dominion Lending Centres Mortgage Professional who can navigate you through the home buying process and give you the resources you need for a successful first home! Give us a call today so we can help you through these steps of home ownership!

JOSEE PICCO
Dominion Lending Centres – Accredited Mortgage Professional
9 Jul

3 STEPS TO TAKE YOU FROM PRE-APPROVAL TO GETTING THE KEYS

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Posted by: Sarah Bate

3 STEPS TO TAKE YOU FROM PRE-APPROVAL TO GETTING THE KEYS

Picture this: You’ve finally been able to put away enough for a down-payment on your dream home. It’s taken you five years of diligent saving, but you did it! You have also been diligently working on improving your credit score and paying off debts and are at a place of financial stability. So, first of all, KUDOS TO YOU! Second…now what do you do? Here are the three steps that will take you from browsing new homes to getting the keys to your new place.

STEP 1: PRE-APPROVAL
This should actually be the step BEFORE house hunting. Visiting your mortgage broker to get pre-approved is the first step anyone looking to buy a home should do. When you meet with your broker for the first time they will:
• Have you fill out an application (or you might be able to fill out one online)
• Pull your credit
• Determine what your maximum purchase price will be.

Be aware that you will also be asked for additional information when you visit your broker to apply, including a letter of employment/pay stub, down payment verification, two years notice of assessment and/or T4’s, a void cheque, and a number of other potential documents.
Once you are pre-approved it’s house hunting time for you! The benefit of having this done BEFORE you start looking is that you can work with your realtor to find properties within that price range.
When you do find just the right home for you, it’s on to step two.

STEP 2: APPROVAL
If you were able to provide the bulk of the paperwork for your pre-approval, then it will be smooth sailing from here. You may have to supply a few pieces of updated information but otherwise, it’s up to the lender to do the hard work at this point.
Your application will be re-assessed, and the lender will take a look at the property you are purchasing. Once they confirm that it aligns with the guidelines they have laid out for your loan, then it is sent off to the mortgage default insurer for approval. At this point, make sure that you do not remove the financing condition until all the lender conditions are met.
Now that you have final sign-off and are waiting for the final conditions to be met, it’s on to step three.

STEP 3: FINAL STEPS
Your broker will notify you once the conditions have all been met, and the lender will send the paperwork over to the Lawyer’s office. The lawyer will take a few days to go through the mortgage and prepare it for your final sign off. When you go, you will be asked to present:
• Void Cheque
• Two forms of identification
• Balance of the down payment in the form of a bank draft

On the day of funding, the lender will send the funds to the lawyer who sends them to the seller’s lawyer who upon receiving the funds will give you the all clear.
All that’s left is to hand you the keys to your new home!
As one final step, keep asking questions at each stage of the mortgage process. You should check in with your Dominion Lending Centres mortgage broker if you have any questions along the way. They are happy to guide you through the process of not only getting a mortgage but also having a mortgage too!

GEOFF LEE
Dominion Lending Centres – Accredited Mortgage Professional
8 Jul

4 HOME IMPROVEMENTS THAT WILL PAY YOU BACK

General

Posted by: Sarah Bate

4 HOME IMPROVEMENTS THAT WILL PAY YOU BACK

Some home improvements provide more of a payback when you sell the house down the road.

Here’s a list of the four home improvements which will provide the biggest payback when you sell.

  1.  Adding square footage – while this can be a very expensive project, adding to the size of a house can re-coup between 50-83% of your initial investment. Putting a bonus room on top of your front facing garage increases the square footage without having to enlarge the foundation.
  2. A deck addition – adding a deck makes a house feel larger and allows you to enjoy your backyard during the warmer months. Typically you can get between 65-90% of your investment back .
  3. Re-modeling the kitchen – one of the most important rooms in the house is the kitchen. A well done project will get you between 50-120% back when you sell the house but remember not to over-do the project. A million dollar kitchen in a $500,000 home won’t be fully appreciated by future buyers.
  4. A bathroom addition – the second room buyers check out is the bathroom. While re-modeling a bathroom will recoup a lot of the renovation costs adding a second bathroom to a one bathroom home is huge. Many home owners find that they get between 80-130% of the cost of the project.

If you are thinking about buying a home or renovating your present home, speak to your Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional about how they can help you to finance any of these projects in your mortgage and pay low interest rates.

DAVID COOKE
Dominion Lending Centres – Accredited Mortgage Professional
8 Jul

We can fix your credit problems

General

Posted by: Sarah Bate

Credit is so important in todays borrowing world. Credit helps obtain better mortgage rates and options BUT did you know other service providers are starting to review credit? Insurance companies for example. Home Utility companies etc. This is an important topic and a great article from my colleague David. I highly recommend you check it out

We can fix your credit problems

Many people do not realize that Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professionals can help you with your credit and get you to a point where you will qualify for a mortgage. We have been doing this for years.

New to Canada or Just Graduated – both of these groups of people have the same problem. They have little or no established credit so lenders are hesitant to lend them hundreds of thousands of dollars to buy a home without a track record. Your DLC mortgage professional can get you a Dominion credit card. You should get a $1,500 limit as that’s the magic number with lenders. A car loan or a personal loan would be a good idea as well. Why? Lenders want to see that you can pay off a debt such as a loan and that you can budget for a revolving line of credit such as a credit card where the balance goes up and down monthly.

Previously Bankrupt or in Consumer Proposal – you had credit and something went wrong. Now you need to re-establish credit. We can help you obtain a secured credit card or help you with suggestions on how to re-build your credit. This can’t be done overnight, but if you are patient and work with us, the end result will be improved credit. Did you know that we have lenders who will pay out your consumer proposal as part of a mortgage refinance? It’s not well advertised but we can do it.

Bruised Credit – these are people who have had credit and then something goes wrong, but we can help. Usually it’s a result of a divorce, a long illness or a job loss. You can go see a credit counsellor for help in improving your credit which will cost you about $6-800 for a year of help, or come see us. We have a program set up by one of the credit reporting agencies that tells you exactly what to pay off first and how much to pay to get the maximum improvement in your credit score. This program costs $17 a month. Your Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional can get you set up with this .
Instead of being denied a mortgage and told to come back when your credit is better, go directly to your DLC mortgage professional and get help. We’re in the business of helping people.

David Cooke
Dominion Lending Centres – Accredited Mortgage Professional