Ahmad Sai’s Home Buying System For Buyers– Key to your home buying success
Welcome to Ahmad Sai’s home buying system!
I have customized this page for buying a home in Edmonton, and specifically for residents of Alberta, as real estate laws and information is slightly different for each of the provinces in Canada. Hopefully my 7 home buying steps will help you find your next dream home, stress free, and with no surprises.
These 7 steps are things to consider when you are thinking of buying a home in Edmonton. Whether you’re looking the buy a home listed on the MLS, a for sale by owner, through a commission free company, or even building a home through a builder in Edmonton.
My home buying system will take you through a step by step process to help you determine the type of home ownership that is right for you. To make your home buying experience as informative and easy as possible, I have included information on mortgages, house hunting, making the offer, home inspections, finding a real estate lawyer, possession day, moving and much more.
1. GET PRE-APPROVED FOR THE MORTGAGE
By getting pre-approved for a mortgage, Edmonton home buyers will be able to determine what their purchasing power is (knowing your purchasing power = negotiating power) based on yearly income for an individual or family combined, funds available for down payment, and credit history. Just remember on a proper pre-approval the bank or mortgage broker will request supporting documents at the onset of the pre-approval process in order for the application to be underwritten and officially pre-approved (subject to approval of the property). If a buyer has not provided documents to their bank’s mortgage specialist or a mortgage broker, they have merely been “pre-qualified” by the person taking the application. A firm pre-approval will also hold the interest rate for a period of time, typically 120 days. Here is a list of documents a buyer can expect their mortgage broker or bank to request at the time of pre-approval (additional documents may be requested depending on the buyer’s personal situation):
- Proof of Employment (Recent Pay stubs, Job letter or most recent T4)
- T1 Generals (Income tax return) with corresponding Notice of Assessment (If you are self-employed)
- Proof of Down payment (currently 5% minimum on a primary residence)
2. CHOOSE A PROFESSIONAL REALTOR
Contact your Local Edmonton Realtor – Someone you can trust and who you feel confident will be looking out for your best interest, not theirs. With these philosophies at heart and with the experience and knowledge I’ve gained in the past 7 years as an Edmonton Realtor, I can help you purchase your dream home in the right neighbourhood and for the right price. Did you know that I also help my clients purchase homes through a Builder, that are For sale by owner or Commission Free homes without ANY ADDITIONAL COST to YOU the home buyer? Being a member of THE REALTOR ASSOSICATION OF EDMONTON allows me negotiate the best price possible with our local Edmonton Home Builders.
3. HOUSE HUNTING
I advise Edmonton real estate buyers to write down everything they need and want in a home – although, most homebuyers will confuse their needs with their wants when it comes to purchasing a home. Wants are things that “would be nice to have” but not the essentials, whereas needs are specifications that the buyer cannot compromise on. Not to say both wants and needs cannot be accomplished, but just keep in mind you will pay extra upfront for the items that you could change over time. I believe a house must accommodate your needs and you will turn it into that warm and inviting place called home.
NEEDS OR MUST HAVES
- Type of home preferred: Single family home, Townhouse, Half Duplex or Condominium Resale or Brand New
- Style of home: Two story, Bi-level or Bungalow
- Number of bedrooms and bathrooms and required amount of storage space
- Large Backyard or small and low maintenance
- Single, Double, or Triple car garage
- Neighborhood and location: Close to work, schools, hospitals, shopping or easy access to major freeways or highways
WANTS OR LUXURY ITEMS
- Color choice on the paint of the home
- Color/Style of Cabinets and Counter tops
- Appliance color: White, Black or Stainless Steel
- Flooring: Carpet, Hardwood or Laminate
- Open concept main floor
- Basement fully finished or unfinished
- Exterior: Stucco or Vinyl
Edmonton real estate buyers need to figure out how much they would be able to afford for monthly costs; including mortgage payments, maintenance, taxes and condo fees, etc. (Since this exercise will undoubtedly impact on the type and size of property that a buyer can actually afford, Edmonton real estate buyers may choose to revisit their wants and needs list after adding up the cost and change some items that impact most on the price).
4. MAKING AN OFFER
Real Estate is a very unique industry in which the market and neighborhood determines what a property should sell for and there are 3 types of markets in real estate: Balanced Market, Home Sellers’ Market and Home Buyers’ Market. As your Real Estate Pro I can advise on which type of market we are currently in and provide you with a free market evaluation so you can make an informed decision when it comes to negotiating your offer.
The amount of homes for sale on the market and number of homebuyers are equal – when making an offer to purchase, both home sellers and homebuyers have equal opportunity to negotiate the best price possible.
Home Sellers’ Market:
The amount of homes listed for sale in the market are significantly lower than there are home buyers, which can drive home prices higher and cause there to be multiple offers on the same property-especially in the $300,000 to $400,000 price range. In a Sellers’ market they hold a stronger negotiating position when it comes to the sale price of their home due to higher demand for their property. When making an offer in this type of market be prepared for less negotiating power and in some cases the buyer may have to pay list price or higher in order to purchase that particular property. As a buyer you will want my strong negotiating skills on your side in this type of market.
Home buyers’ Market:
The number of homes on the market far outweighs the number of homebuyers, which in turn will drive prices lower (the law of supply and demand). Homebuyers have more negotiating power in this type of market and would be a great time for homebuyers to find the home that they need with potentially some of those wants that can be negotiated at a much better price.
5. HOME INSPECTION
At this point you have an accepted offer to purchase on a home meaning that home is now “pending” and your offer to purchase will most likely contain 2 very common buyer conditions: Condition of Finance which means your offer is conditional to the mortgage specialist or mortgage broker providing you with a firm approval now that there is an actual property involved and Condition of a Home Inspection which means that as the buyer you intend to hire an independent licensed home inspector to look for any possible deficiencies or structural issues within the home to insure there will be no major issues after move in. Home inspectors will provide you with a detailed report and peace of mind that the property you are buying is structurally sound and has been well maintained.
6. REAL ESTATE LAWYER
At this stage of the real estate transaction, you, the homebuyer have now removed all of your conditions from the purchase contract (meaning you have officially purchased the home) and the next step is to connect with a real estate lawyer who will schedule an appointment to meet once all the legal documents are ready to sign. Over the last 7 years I have worked with various Real Estate Lawyers and can refer you to a Real Estate Lawyer who I know and trust to also look out for your best interest.
A Real Estate lawyer will receive the applicable documents from your Realtor as well as mortgage instructions from the mortgage lender you have chosen to work with. They will verify all the information to be correct, apply to land titles to register you as the new owner of the property as well as register the new mortgage charge on title. They will request the sellers lawyer provide a Real Property Report (RPR) as well as ensure the property complies with building codes, and the lot size matches as per city assessment. Your Real Estate Lawyer will also determine any property tax adjustments that may be required depending on how much the seller has paid in property taxes to date.
Your lawyer will be responsible for collecting the balance of your down payment, receiving mortgage funds from your financial institution, and the signing of all documents that allow them to transfer the full amount of the purchase price to the seller’s lawyer on possession date.
7. POSSESSION DATE
Possession Day is an exciting day for a homebuyer and is also referred to as the closing date. This is the last stage of a real estate transaction and the day a homebuyer receives the keys to their new home. In Alberta possession will typically take place by 12:00pm however in some cases it could be earlier or later than that specific time. By the possession day the homebuyer will have their home insurance in place, have contacted the utility companies to provide services in their name instead of the previous owners as well as contacted Canada Post to update their mailing address.
Now that you have read my 7 step system to a successful home purchase in Edmonton, contact me and get a true Real Estate Professional working for you.