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What are Closing Costs?

Posted onApril 15/2015By

The home buying process comes with many added monetary instances that you will need to budget for. These are referred to as closing costs, and they’re an often overlooked part of the mortgage process. These fees are paid at the end of a real estate transaction when you are buying a home. In most cases, the buyer incurs closing costs, but there are occasions where the seller takes them on. On average, here is what you should budget for when it comes to closing costs: Appraisal: This can range anywhere from $100 to $200. The average appraiser in Ontario will charge about $175 (plus tax) to give your home an extended once-over to make sure it’s in good shape. For custom-built homes and homes off the beaten path (like cottages and lake houses), the appraisal fee may be a little higher. Home Inspection: This differs from an appraisal because a…

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Do you need Homeowners Insurance?

Posted onApril 01/2015By

When it comes to your home, whether you own a condo or a house, you should be protected against a variety of outside factors that are out of your control. Homeowners insurance offers that protection, but the question is, do you need it? Considering how much money it takes to own a home, some people think homeowners insurance is just another way for you to throw away your hard earned dollars. However, homeowners insurance isn’t an unneeded addition; in fact, it’s actually an essential aspect of your ownership in some cases. Think about everything in your home from your television to your laptop to your refrigerator. These are all important items that you use daily. Should they become damaged, it will be quite costly to replace them. If you have a good policy, you will save money should something happen to your belongings. There are factors that could damage our…

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What Options do Brokers Offer that Banks Don’t?

Posted onJanuary 27/2015By

Brokers versus Lenders A broker’s job is not just to provide a mortgage; it is to find the best possible mortgage for a client’s situation among multiple lenders. A good broker will shop around between many different banks and credit unions to find the best mortgage product for the client. This is a fundamentally different service from banks or other lenders. While a broker’s purpose is to find the best mortgage for a client, a bank’s purpose is to sell the client on the bank’s products. Advantages of Going through a Broker Mortgages are complicated affairs with many hidden costs. Many first-time home buyers choose mortgages strictly based on rates. However, they end up getting fleeced by fees, pay restrictions, and refinance policies. This is especially true for people with variable income or bad credit, who need more flexible mortgage options. A broker can help find a mortgage product specifically…

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How to Win a Bidding War

Posted onJanuary 20/2015By

Conventional wisdom holds that buyers should never enter a bidding war. This wisdom is becoming less and less useful in the real world as competition for real estate increases. Many sellers in fast-growing urban areas like Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, and especially the GTA are deliberately under-pricing their property in order to suck multiple buyers into a bidding war. As a result, 16% of all Canadians have engaged in a bidding war at least once in their lives. The truth is that if you want to buy property in Canada’s hottest cities, you may need to fight for it, and you want to fight to win. You also want to define “win” correctly. Looking at winning solely in terms of who gets the house is a sure-fire way to get fleeced. Instead, think of winning as buying the house for what it is actually worth. To do this, follow these steps:…

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How to Invest in Real Estate

Posted onJanuary 16/2015By

Real estate is an attractive investment, and it’s getting more attractive all the time. Land is a finite resource, but Canada’s population is increasing. The basic laws of supply and demand mean that land, in general, will become more valuable in the future. Real estate investment has also kicked into high gear recently as low mortgage rates inspire many to buy additional investment properties. Although attractive, real estate investment is complicated. Here are several different approaches to entering the world of real estate investment: 1. House Flipping Many people first become involved in the real estate market through house-flipping. This is when you buy a house when the market is low, renovating it, and selling it when the market is high again. An advantage of this approach is the ability to live in a house while waiting for its value to mature. This option carries one major risk: the cost of…

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