Taking your first step into the housing market? Congratulations! Buying your first home is a major milestone, and you should be proud of this accomplishment. However, buying a home for the first time has many unfamiliar steps involved and, let’s be honest, with it can come plenty of confusion and stress. Let this serve as your complete guide to get your foot through the door of your first home.
(or People who haven’t owned property in the past 4 years)
Any first time buyer or people who haven’t owned property in the past 4 years can borrow up to $25,000 tax free from their RRSP.
If two people are buying and one has owned in the past 4 years and the other hasn’t, then the one that hasn’t owned can still use their RRSP funds to buy. These funds must be repaid to your RRSP within 15 years. See your lender for details.
First Time Home Buyers Tax Credit (HBTC). This is a tax credit (cash!) of $750 for both first time buyers and buyers who have not owned in the past 4 years. With HBTC if two people are buying, neither may have owned in the past 4 years. To get this tax credit you must be earning enough income to be paying federal income tax.
(To get this $750 credit, at tax time enter $5,000 on line 369 of Schedule 1 of your personal tax return. The claim can be split between you and your spouse or common-law partner.)
DO YOUR HOMEWORK
Before you set up any meetings, determine your wish-list of features you want in your future home. Consider factors like location, price range, zoning, amenities and transportation. Having a detailed checklist will save you both the time and disappointment of looking at homes that don’t fit into your criteria. If you map out both your wants and needs in order of importance ahead of time, your options will become much more focused.
BUILD YOUR DREAM TEAM
To get into your dream home, you’re going to need a dream team. Starting with a mortgage pro, you’ll also need a realtor, appraiser, home inspector and lawyer. You’ll find these professions work very closely together, so find someone you can trust and I, as your realtor, sure to have some recommendations on who else would be a good fit for your team.
The first step towards being approved for a mortgage is to understand the factors that define whether you qualify or not, typically broken down into four main components: your credit, your ability to pay, your down payment and your collateral. It is best to work with a mortgage specialist and provide them with all the necessary information upfront to understand you and your goals for a mortgage loan. You will need to provide information about your employment, information about all sources of income, banking details, proof of any assets, details of loans or debts and evidence of a down payment.
SHOP THE MARKET WITH YOUR REALTOR
Here’s the fun part and where a realtor can step into to help you. As you start looking at properties, it can be exciting to imagine your future based out of a new home, and having a team of professionals to guide you through the process can put your mind at ease. I, as your realtor, will ensure that the decision you make today will have a positive effect on your future.