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Vancouver, BC -- (SBWIRE) -- 09/07/2012 -- If you are thinking of buying yourself a house in Vancouver, Canada, you'll have to make some very important calls. When you are to make tough decisions, you may feel the need of some good advice to help you. Here are some essential Vancouver buy house tips for you:
1. Sell your current home (If your are a first time home buyer, skip this part.)
It seems to be a very tough decision when it comes to selling your present home: should you sell first and buy later, or buy first and sell later? Even though it is a security to buy a house in Vancouver before you sell your present home, selling first has some great advantages:
a) You'll be aware of the selling cost of your house, so you can ascertain, beforehand, the amount available for buying a house in Vancouver
b) You might be lucky as you may not have to set the offer subject to financing
c) You may even manage a long closing time, giving you ample time to look for a good house in Vancouver.
d) Even though selling first could be distressing phase, you will find it equally tiring to own and maintain two houses!
If you feel this is not easy to decide, ask your realtor or real estate agent for some suggestions, they know the local market better.
2. Be financially ready and decide your budget
Make sure you have at least some of your down payment saved. Also, ensure that you are already capable of managing your debts, like those from loans or credit cards. You must realize that mortgage is a great responsibility. It is a financial aspect that will require you to maintain it continuously.
There are too many money lending institutions today from banks to lenders to credit unions. When you have to decide which one to go to, shed your inhibitions and ask all around the town, including your family and friends. Your agent/realtor will also know a lot about mortgages so you can ask him or her for some sound advice too. They might even get you in contact with a mortgage broker.
For deciding your budget, consider what you believe you will have remaining after the down payment. Here's an equation to help you calculate: Cost of a home = one-time cost + monthly costs.
The one-time costs constitute the down payment, taxes, inspection fees and legal fees. The monthly costs are made up by the mortgage, maintenance, utilities, property taxes and insurance.
If your budget is really tight, consider "Shared Equity": a smart method to get an affordable house in Vancouver. You will have your own shared equity investment or co-ownership. There is a service named as: "Mixer Mortgage" or "co-borrower mortgages" in many banks. It allows family members, friends or partners to share all the expenses of purchasing a home, both one-time and monthly costs like deposit, mortgage, etc.
3. Decide your preference and research
Make decision according to your choice of rural, suburban or urban setting and select a suitable Vancouver neighborhood accordingly. Similarly, decide whether you want an apartment, or an attached or detached house. The availability as well as the age of the property, depending on whether it is new or being resold, will also affect the price of the house, and consequently, your budget.
An amazing search tool by the name of Multiple Listings Service, containing all information on properties, is routinely used by realtors and home buyers. You can search by yourself, it is free and easy. If you have an agent, get your agent send those listings to you in accordance with your requirements so that you can make a shortlist. Thereafter, you only need to visit a few houses in Vancouver and make a wise, aware decision.
4. Look for the right agent/realtor and hire some specialists
You will find that there are many approaches you can use to come across a real estate agent or realtor. You can find them by taking down names as you take a drive through the localities that interest you, visit an open house in Vancouver, check advertisements, and consult family and friends for reference to an agent they might know. Shortlist and interview a few before selecting one out of all the realtors. Frankly, we prefer hiring those agents who have long term local market experience, and referred by other home buyers recently.
You may get the best rates with the help of a mortgage broker. A lawyer or a notary public may help you be aware of all the documents that you may need when purchasing a home. Employing the services of a home inspector will help you know well the condition of the house before you shift in.
5. Prepare an offer and negotiate
Your agent/realtor can help you prepare an offer as they are very experienced in these aspects. If there are terms you don't understand, feel hesitant or have any concerns, do ask! You have all rights to be explained to by your realtor/agent.
Don't be scared by the home seller's first price! The market is changing, you have power to bargain for a proper better price. And you do not need to talk to the seller face to face, your agent should do it and he/she should be a good negotiator and bargainer. This is why it is very important to hire a good realtor, since a seasoned agent can cut down the over high price and save thousands even hundreds of thousands of dollars for you!
6. Close the deal thoroughly
Once your offer gets accepted, your lawyer (or the notary public) and realtor will seal of the loose ends. However, you should ensure that you know everything about the agreement, and act upon any conditions that require you to take an action immediately. If you ascertain this, you'll have your Vancouver buy home dream come true really soon.
At this stage, the most important thing is: make sure your lawyer or notary public will hold the special levy or credit for you. Sometimes, the property could have occurred some kind of special levy before your buy it. For example, an apartment or condo had fixed the roof or replaced the pipes several months ago, this money was a special levy and should be paid by the home seller of course. You and your agent should ask the seller to credit back this special levy, and your lawyer or notary public should hold this money for your future use.
For more information on Housing in Vancouver, please visit http://www.squidoo.com/housing-in-vancouver or http://www.house-vancouver.com.