Choosing My First Home
So, how do you envision your first home? At this stage of the game, you should know what you can afford. All that's left is for you to find your dream home. Take the time to determine your priorities using our two checklists.
What Kind of Property Am I Looking For?
- An income property
- A new or resale single-family home
- A condominium
1. Income Properties
Two things about income properties that make them different from single-family residences:
- The rental income helps cover the costs and mortgage payments.
- Management and upkeep are more time-consuming.
2. New or Resale Single-Family Homes
New Single-Family Homes
Buying From a Builder
Put as much care into choosing your builder as you do into choosing your home. Learn what you can about him or her. A good builder will spare you all kinds of horrors (construction defects, delays, botched finishing, etc.).
Here's a list of questions to ask before signing your construction contract:
- Is your builder a recognized, certified construction professional?
- How long has your builder been in business and what is his or her track record?
- What is the reputation of the tradespeople who work for your builder?
- Is your builder a member of the province’s homebuilders association, the Association provinciale des constructeurs d’habitations du Québec (APCHQ) or the Canadian Home Builders’ Association?
- Is your builder registered with the New Home Warranty Program? Find out at one of these sites:
- Have there ever been complaints lodged against your builder by the industry’s regulatory bodies?
- What type of after-sales service does your builder offer?
- Does your builder provide warranties?
- Are your builder’s references good and verifiable?
- Will your builder let you visit the construction site?
- Does your builder give you the option of customizing your property?
Resale Single-Family Homes
How to find your dream home in six easy steps:
- Walk around the neighbourhood you want to live in.
- Consult different newspapers and real estate guides.
- Look online.
- Consult sites, such as centris.ca, listing houses being sold by real estate agents from various agencies.
- Go directly to the sites of different brokers and real estate agencies.
- Meet with a broker or real estate agent.
Comparative Table: Resale vs. New
|New Homes||Resale Homes|
|Based on plans||You are buying something concrete|
|Huge variety of models||Vast array of choices|
|Homogenous neighbourhood||Infrastructures and services are already there|
|Landscaping requirements||Renovations to think about|
|New home warranty||Energy costs could be higher|
|Lower energy costs||No GST or QST added to the purchase price|
|GST or QST added to the sale price|
Condominiums are becoming increasingly popular.
- They are generally located in hot neighbourhoods.
- They are a good way for urbanites to get on the market.
If you are interested in this kind of home, don't forget that there are condo fees that go towards shared expenses.
So, do you know where your priorities lie? Do you know what kind of home you are looking for? If so, you are ready to start house hunting! Once you've found your dream home, present an offer to purchase.