Buyers

When you make the decision to buy a property, it is easy to feel overwhelmed by the decisions and tasks that lay ahead of you. Below we have provided answers to some of the questions that Team Michelle Yu is most commonly asked, which should give you a head start.

  • I want to buy a property. What's the first thing I should do?
  • When should I apply for a mortgage?
  • How should I start my property search?
  • How do I know if I am choosing a good builder?
  • Why do I need a Real Estate Lawyer? What will they do?
  • What is a new home warranty?
  • What is a homeowner information package?


  • I want to buy a property. What's the first thing I should do?
    Before you begin searching for a property, it's important to get an accurate idea of what you can afford. The best way to do this is to work with a financial representative, who will be able to advise you on your mortgage options, and calculate a mortgage level that is suitable for you. This will take into account all of your incomings and outgoings, as well as how much you would like to keep aside. You can also get a rough idea of what you can afford by using the various calculator tools available on the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation website.
    When should I apply for a mortgage?
    It is best to apply for a mortgage before you start your property search. By getting a mortgage pre-approved you can be sure of what you can afford to buy. Pre-approval also speeds up the purchasing process once you've found your perfect home.
    How should I start my property search?
    A good place to begin your search for property is the real estate section of a newspaper that is local to the area you wish to live in. This will give you an idea of what is available for the price you can afford. It will also provide a useful overview of the developments that are available and upcoming in your chosen location. It's a good idea to look at a few places before you are ready to buy, as this will put you in a good position to make an informed decision when the time comes. This can be especially important for particularly small or desirable developments, where demand exceeds supply, and you may need to move quickly to secure the place you want.
    How do I know if I am choosing a good builder?
    The best way to find out about local builders is to ask homeowners about their experiences. Who built their home and would they recommend them? Were they impressed with the quality of craftsmanship? Have any repairs been required? If it was a new home, did they receive good after care? You can also do your own research about specific builders whose developments take your interest. Find out what previous projects they've worked on and try to get a feel for their reputation by asking around.
    Why do I need a Real Estate Lawyer? What will they do?
    You need a real estate lawyer to process all the legal paperwork involved in buying (and selling) a property. They will run through the written agreements with you, so that you fully understand what is and is not included in your purchase. The most important document they will help you complete is the Agreement of Purchase and Sale. This is a legal document that you will need to sign in order to complete the transfer of ownership of the properties involved in the transaction.
    What is a new home warranty?
    If you purchase a new home, it will come with a new home warranty. This is a guarantee that your builder will pay for certain aspects of repair and maintenance on your home, for a given period of time specific to each aspect. Government requirements state that the minimum warranty required for new homes in Canada is a '2-5-10 warranty'. This covers your home for a minimum of 2 years on labour and materials, 5 years on the building envelope, including water penetration, and 10 years on structure.
    What is a homeowner information package?
    This is a document that buyers of new homes will receive from their builder. It provides details of the new home warranty, including what it covers, and the responsibilities that lie with the new home owner in maintaining the property, and those that lie with the builder.