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FAQ

How long will it take to sell/find my house?

This is the million dollar question, it is a dynamic process which can be estimated based on some sound research into comparables, and property history and also depends on other factors such as: location, timing, terms offering, competition and of course, price. However, with the help of our services, we will be able to give you an educated estimate and of course our primary goal is to satisfy your real estate needs.

Presently the average time to sell homes in our City is one week to 60 days.

What do I pay upon closing and how much does it cost?

The home buyer must pay Legal Fees, disbursements (these are the fees the lawyer has to pay to do the required searches and inquiries), H.S.T.  (NOT G.S.T. (if applicable), land transfer tax, title insurance, etc. The legal fees vary from area to area and the type of property being purchased.

What things should I know before I sign an Offer To Purchase?

An offer to purchase is a contract that is binding on both the vendor and the buyer. Seeing a lawyer before you sign that offer can help avoid difficulties later on and ensures you that your best interests are protected. Ex-escape clauses, request a warranty that all by-laws, etc are conforming, request surveys, request the deposit is placed in an interest-bearing account, etc. Lawyers also provide you with information regarding closing costs over and above the purchase price, including but not limited to: land transfer tax, registration fees, search fees, legal fees, prepaid utility and tax bills, etc.

What happens after "The Vendor" has accepted my offer?

If you have conditions in your offer the next period of time is the conditional period where you work to fulfill your Buyer conditions (ie-financing, inspection, insurance, house to sell, etc.), if you have no conditions then now the lawyers work begins. He/she will ask many specific questions about the property and will complete legal inquiries, searches, fact-checking to ensure that upon closing, you truly own the home and will be allowed to occupy it. Lawyers also provide advice on mortgages and its terms, different types of ownership (joint tenants, tenants-in-common), and explain the purpose of all the necessary documents you are required to endorse.lawyers work now begins, he/she will ask many specific questions about the property and will complete legal inquiries, searches, fact-checking to ensure that upon closing, you truly own the home and will be allowed to occupy it. Lawyers also provide advice on mortgages and its terms, different types of ownership (joint tenants, tenants-in-common), and explain the purpose of all the necessary documents you are required to endorse.

I need to buy a house with good resale value. How do I determine if my house will increase in value within the next five years so that we can upgrade? I can buy a smaller house in a great location or get twice as much house in a good location. Which is a wiser decision?

The age old wisdom is the least expensive house in the desirable location so you can add on as you wish and we hope over the next five years our market continues to steadily appreciate.

Why should a lawyer assure you Good Title?

Another important task of a lawyer will be to ensure that you have good title to the property that you are buying. This ensures that you really own the property and that it is correctly described in all official documents and properly registered and that no claims or liens are present.

I have a choice between an updated home in an older neighbourhood or a newer home in a more modern neighbourhood. The home in the older neighbourhood has almost everything I want and is much larger, but which makes the most sense as an investment?

It really depends on your wants as older neighbourhoods can offer larger properties, more trees and less construction to deal with but the most important ingredient would be the location, which helps protect your investment.

When buying a new home, what upgrades should we go for? What holds the most value? Do we upgrade the lot? Pick more sq ft in the house?

This is different for each buyer as some need the square footage but a great way to do this economically is finishing the basement or the room above the garage. The value in finishing of the kitchens and bathrooms seems to be a ‘safe’ upgrade and is appreciated by future buyers if you go to resell. The first decision is the lot and this is very important as interior finishings can be updated but the location is permanent so we would suggest selecting the right location whether it be size or trees or water and work from there to be within your budget.

Where does my deposit go if my offer is accepted?

Your deposit is held in trust by the listing broker, it is applied towards the purchase price on closing (towards your down payment), or if you don’t fulfill all of your conditions in your offer then the deposit is returned to you upon the signing of a mutual release by both the Seller and the Buyer

How do i compete with the bidding wars that are going on?

Great question and this is where you need to trust your realtor in that they provide you a complete picture of the market, the area specifically you are looking at and the house you want to buy and comparing it to other recent sales.  Then combine that with the length of time on the market, the work involved if any to make the house your own and most importantly, how many other offers you are competing with.  All things you can discuss with your realtor to ensure you make an informed decision.

When is the best time to sell or buy a house?

Well, the easy answer is whenever it suits your needs!  Much like the stock market, it is difficult to time the market.  We have recently enjoyed a Sellers market for the last few years, and this is expected to continue for a few more years.  And typically Sellers prefer to list in the spring with moving before the fall.  As for Buyers, there are typically more options to choose from during this period as well!

Why is the assessed value different than what you say my home is worth?

Assessed value is not the same as market value or appraised value.  There are many homes that could be sold for significantly more than an assessed value and others that maybe sold for significantly less.  The assessed value of a home is used for the purpose of taxes in your local municipality.  The assessed value of a home is multiplied by the local tax rate to determine what your yearly taxes are.  The assessed value has no impact on how much your home is worth to a potential buyer in the marketplace.
Unfortunately, there are many home buyer’s who believe that a home that is listed higher than the assessed value is overpriced.  This is the furthest from the truth.  Home buyer’s also question if something is wrong with a home if the list price is much less than the assessed value.  The bottom line is the assessed value has no impact on how much your home is worth.  There are home owners who don’t pay attention to their assessed value, just to find out their municipality has been slowly raising it, year after year, even though the market value hasn’t been increasing.

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