Category Archives: Real Estate 101

Happy young couple getting keys of their new house. Close up of female hand receiving keys from house broker. Closeup of the hand of a real estate agent who give the house keys to a woman while her boyfriend signing a contract.

Understanding the Promise to Purchase

You’re planning on buying your very first home in the near future. You have heard of a promise to purchase (formerly known as an offer to purchase) and you are wondering what its purpose is. Here are the main details.

The promise to purchase is the result of a series of exchanges and promises between the future home buyer and the current homeowner. All the details are written down in this document. The promise to purchase is an agreement, which defines the ground rules between the two parties. If conditions are set forth, the deadlines should be clearly stated and the parties undertake to fulfill them.

The promise to purchase is an important document because, as the title states, you commit to buy the property, but under certain conditions set forth on either side. These conditions are laid down in writing in this document.

The promise to purchase is the step that comes right before the deed of sale, which is the famous contract that officially declares you the owner of the coveted house. Just about every detail written down in the promise to purchase will be found in the deed of sale. The content is very similar. Continue reading

iStock

The Benefits of Working with a Real Estate Broker

Spring is on our doorstep. For many of you, it’s the final race to buy that first home. In fact, why not make your last-minute rush a little less stressful by calling a real estate broker. It comes with a long list of advantages. Here are the major ones.

If time is of the essence, the real estate broker will be more than welcome. Not only will the real estate professional deal with the bulk of the work, but he or she will also work at a fast pace without skipping any steps.

First buyers usually have two common concerns: a possible budget overrun and buying a home with latent defects, which would implicate unforeseen renovation work and maybe even legal complications. Again, the real estate broker is there to assist first buyers and give them the proper advice to minimize those risks.

The real estate broker also helps first buyers to better manage their stress and avoid a ton of pitfalls, such as hasty decisions causing devastating consequences, poor knowledge of the laws and regulations or a lack of communication with the coveted house’s current owner. Continue reading

iStock

How to Quickly Sell Your Home

Selling your home in less than a year and selling it for the desired price is the dream of every homeowner looking to sell his or her property. How to make it happen? Here is an overview.

  • The asking price must be reasonable from the beginning. Setting it too high in the hopes of making a huge profit is the worst thing you can do. All professionals will tell you: properties that have been on the market for too long frighten the buyers away. They’ll back off.
  • A classic way to set the asking price is to look at the selling price of the similar homes nearby. But, this method is not foolproof. The houses on the street may look the same, but you don’t know their history, their overall condition inside and out or the upgrades that have been carried out over the years.
  • The municipal assessment gives an idea of how much a house should sell, but this method has its limits too.
  • Avoid setting the price according to your own judgment. What if the house is worth more than you had guessed? Otherwise, be realistic. Your house is not a mansion.
  • The real estate broker is highly qualified to determine the selling price for obvious reasons. However, by doing business with an accredited appraiser, you’ll end up with an appraisal report. It will come in handy when negotiating with the future buyer.
iStock
iStock
  • Once you have set the asking price, establish the lowest price you would be willing to accept. Your real estate broker will help you with this step.

Continue reading

iStock

A Guide to Group Buying

Has the thought of buying a property with someone else or with a few people ever crossed your mind? It’s actually possible, but the experience requires discipline.

Buying a property collectively with a relative, either a friend or a family member, is often the ideal solution, especially since access to a property appears to be getting sparse these days. The constraints are numerous: a tightening of mortgage rules, a record high in household debts and difficulties in establishing a budget.

It’s a simple matter of mathematics. The more people are paying for a property, the lesser the amount each one has to pay for it. However, as any other joint enterprise, there are risks. Several things must be taken care of, such as contribution amounts, task distribution as well as the temperament of each and every one.

Hence, the importance of sticking to a protocol, not only to achieve the ultimate goal, which is buying a property, but also to prevent the relationships between the co-owners from going sour.

Erica Nielson, from the RBC Bank, offers advice to help you make your group purchase a success and not a source of problems.

Here is precisely her advice: Continue reading