You Ask, We Answer: When is the Right Time to Upgrade to a Larger Home

April 19th, 2018 Comments off


With larger homes come more financial responsibility. Typically larger homes will come with a larger mortgage, repair/maintenance, utilities, and insurance payments as well as increased property taxes. Are you ready financially for these larger expenses? Take into account these estimated expenses when going over your household budget. Remember, ideally you’ll want to be able to maintain a comfortable quality of life and still be able to save for the future when these larger expenses are taken into account with your budget.

Down Payments

There is a need in most cases during the property buying process to make a down payment and to pay for closing costs. You should include these expenses in your estimations while keeping in mind that selling the existing property and accessing equity will yield most or all of the funds that are needed to make a new purchase. Working with a real estate professional and a mortgage broker will help you to get more information about these two factors before making a sound financial decision.

When the time is right for you to upgrade to a larger home, you should consider working with an experienced real estate agent to sell your existing property and help you in the process of buying a new home!


Categories: Home Upgrades, REAL ESTATE Tags:

Bring Spring into Your Home with Pantone’s Rose Quartz

April 11th, 2018 Comments off

Spring is just around the corner and what better way to introduce it to your home than with Rose Quartz. This lovely colour blends shades of pink to produce a rich, multifaceted colour that provides warmth and a sense of home. It brings a pop of colour that can brighten up even the dullest of rooms. Go all out or try just a few accents. This colour is sure to bring an aura of happiness and comfort to your home. Rose Quartz is a versatile shade that can update the look of your home in a variety of ways.

As an Accent

Small accents of colour throughout a room can have a major visual impact, instantly drawing your eye to key focus points around the room. Try an antique lampshade in your bedroom or a decorative pitcher in your kitchen. Accent pieces are a great way to experiment with a new colour palette without having to make a full commitment to it until you are ready.

To Fill a Room

If you have a room in your home that is looking especially bare, a dash of Rose Quartz can be just what you need to take that room from drab to dynamic. This vibrant colour fills the empty space with warmth, making a somewhat empty room feel inviting. Try a quilt in this welcoming hue in your guest bedroom or a bold wall tapestry in your entryway. The richness of the colour will make your guests feel immediately at home.

For Dramatic Impact

To make a bold statement with Rose Quartz, use it to tile your bathroom. The energy of the shade creates an atmosphere of comfortable luxury that is perfect for lounging in the tub and pampering yourself. For an even more dramatic effect, paint a single wall behind your bed and use bedding in a dark colour. This warm tone will create a romantic atmosphere that is ideally suited to the bedroom.

Moving into a new home can be the ideal time to start thinking about redecorating. Throughout the moving process, you can take inventory of your decor and get rid of anything that no longer fits with the style you have in mind. When you get settled into the new home, it’s like having a blank canvas on which to develop your new decorative theme. If you’re ready to make a move contact us today!


Categories: Home Owner, Home Upgrades, REAL ESTATE Tags:

Save Money and Boost Your Resale Value with These 3 Energy Saving Home Renovations

April 5th, 2018 Comments off

Home renovations may be costly, but they are always worth the time and money. Anybody who is interested in upgrading their Nanaimo home should consider focusing on renovations that are energy efficient. Not only will these upgrades help the resale value of the house, they will also pay for themselves with the amount of money they shave off of power and gas bills over the long run.

New Doors and Windows Can Put a Dent in Power Bills

Old doors and windows have outdated designs and were not always constructed with the idea of saving energy. The evolution in window design has led to windows that can trap the heat from the sun during the winter to keep a room warm naturally with the added bonus of having better seals and more security. Old, wooden doors were originally built to contract and expand as the seasons changed, which left them weathered over time. Drafty doors can be a tremendous drain on the power bill in the coldest months of winter and this simple renovation will save money in the short and long run.

Keep Heat in and Cold out With Proper Insulation

A home works like a well-oiled machine to save energy. Proper doors and windows with a great heating system will do nothing if the warmth keeps escaping due to poor insulation. Over time, older insulation will lose its ability to properly control the home’s temperature and a complete insulation upgrade to newer material will not only pay for itself, but it will fill in areas that may have been passed over the first time. Many older homes have no insulation in the attic, allowing heat to escape very easily. A properly insulated house also has the benefit of removing some strain from heating systems and air conditioners, leading to the possibility of smaller models.

Lower Energy Bills with Efficient Appliances

One of the easiest ways to make a home more energy efficient, cost-effective and more attractive to any potential buyers down the line is by investing in new appliances. Any appliance that is over ten years old is probably a huge drain on energy and creates significantly more waste than newer models designed to save energy and money. Washers, dryers, refrigerators, washing machines, water heaters and air conditioners that are certified by either EnerGuide or Energy Star will lower gas and power bills by a considerable amount, one that makes the investment worthwhile. This has the added benefit of making the home more attractive and raises the value when trying to sell, as any buyer will want top of the line appliances in their new home.

For an idea of where to start, EnerGuide performs home evaluations for Canadians that are endorsed by the government. They will give the home a complete inspection and provide the owner with a comprehensive guide on which areas can be improved and how much they can save with those improvements. If you would simply like some more information on how your home would compare on the market if it was energy efficient, feel free to reach out to us.


Categories: Home Owner, Home Upgrades, REAL ESTATE Tags:

List of #Canada150 Activities in #Yeg

June 30th, 2017 Comments off

Hooorayy Canada Day falls on a Saturday this year! And I am sure over the last couples of days you’ve been asked if you have any exciting plans for the long weekend.. If your answer was “No” well, now you do! Here is a list of the events & activities happening around the Capital City for Canada’s Big 150th Birthday.

Family Fun Activities during the day:

Of Course, the Legislature will have a full day of Activities starting with an early morning pancake breakfast at 7:00 am. Other activities at the Leg include:

  1. Family Fun Zone
  2. Leg Open House – take a tour of the Legislature
  3. Live Performances
  4. Indigenous Showcase
  5. Food Trucks (!)

Image result for Legislature Edmonton Canada Day

Photo Cred: Edmonton Sun

Similar to the Legislature City Hall will also be hosting a full day of fun for the Family including:

  1. Beach Party
  2. Photo Booth
  3. BBQ
  4. Live Music & Performances
  5. For More Info Click Here

Image result for Edmonton City Hall Canada 150 Sign

Photo Cred: Twitter Maryanne W (@uptown_one)

Muttart Conservatory will have live music, crafts and face painting 10:00-3:00

The Edmonton Valley Zoo

“Oh Canada! “Get Closer” as we celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday and also the Zoo’s and Lucy’s birthdays as well! At the big birthday bash, take part in our scavenger hunt, learn to paint like Lucy, enjoy live music and learn about all of our Canadian animal friends! Don’t forget to sing Happy Birthday to Lucy and enjoy a mini cupcake! “

Image result for lucy edmonton valley zoo

Photo Cred: Edmonton Sun 

Mill Woods Park (66th St & 23rd Ave) will have hay rides, petting zoo, Carnival and Live Performances.

Image result for millwoods park canada day

Photo Cred:

And the Finale to the entire day is of course, the FIREWORKS! 

  • Alberta Legislature Grounds (Capital Plaza – north plaza)
  • Victoria Park (River Valley Road)
  • Government House Park (Groat Road and River Valley Road)
  • Ezio Faraone Park
  • RE/MAX Field – Those attending the Edmonton Prospects vs the Weyburn Beavers game on July 1 are welcome to remain in their seats at the RE/MAX Field to watch the fireworks
  • Viewing areas accessible on foot only (closed to vehicles):
    • River Valley Road
    • Walterdale Hill Road and Queen Elizabeth Park Road
    • 109 Street (between Saskatchewan Drive and the High Level Bridge)

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Spring Cleaning: Efficiently.

May 16th, 2017 Comments off

Spring Cleaning: Optimize Your Time

Spring is here and that means it is time to start opening some windows to get some fresh air in after locked shut for those long winter months we get here in Edmonton. Is there anything better than those first breezes to blow away the musty winter air? The fresh air is a great way to start the spring cleaning process and offers inspiration for deeper cleaning. The minute that window opens and the breeze hits you, you instantly feel revitalized.

With spring also comes a lot  of other activities that quickly file your schedule, the list is seemingly endless: soccer, softball, camping, hikes, sunbathing, BBQs, family events, weddings, etc.. We’ve scoured websites & blogs looking for the best check-lists, APPs, and tips to help you optimize your  time when it comes to spring cleaning.

  1. Use a check-list to create a room-by-room plan.

2. Download a “Spring Cleaning App” to help you keep track of what has been cleaned and what still needs to be done.

3. Scheduling your cleaning based on how much time you have to clean:

1 – 3 hours • Wipe down kitchen counters
• Clean/disinfect kitchen sink
• Clean inside microwave
• Wipe down stove top
• Clean garbage disposal
• Wipe down bathroom counters/vanity and mirror
• Clean/disinfect bathroom sink and toilet
• Scrub tub, shower walls, tile and grout
• Clean shower racks
• Declutter
• Dust furniture and surfaces
• Sweep, mop and polish floors
4 – 8 hours • Clean/polish kitchen appliances
• Clean stove top, drip pans and knobs
• Clean inside refrigerator and freezer
• Clean the oven
• Vacuum floors and upholstered furniture
• Polish/treat furniture
• Disinfect door knobs, light switches, remote controls
• Dust/clean cords and cables
• Clean door frames
9 – 12 hours • Wipe down and clean inside kitchen cabinets
• Clean behind oven and refrigerator
• Clean fridge’s condenser coils or fan
• Clean dishwasher
• Clean/degrease range hood and filter
• Empty and clean pantry, including floor and door
• Clean inside bathroom cabinets • Vacuum mattress
• Wash pillows
• Clean windows and window screens
• Wash and replace curtains
• Clean blinds
• Clean lamp shades, light fixtures and ceiling fans
• Vacuum and wash rugs/carpets, including stairs and closets
• Clean behind and under furniture
• Wipe down walls, including areas around plugs/switches
• Dust vents and replace air filters
• Clean dryer vent
• Sanitize wastebaskets

Chart from Realty Executives

How List Price Effects Your Days on Market

March 17th, 2017 Comments off

Did you know not pricing your home right the first time can have a detrimental effect on the sale of your home?

List price vs sold*data from paragon. SF homes,zone 29, sold within the last 60days*

In the above graph you can clearly see the homes that sold the quickest sold for, or close to, asking price. Whereas the homes that sold for significantly less than asking (even after multiple price reductions) sat on the market for a longer period of time.

Without a doubt, pricing your home right is one of the most important tools in real estate. Here’s why:

  • The first 3-4 weeks your home is on the market are the most crucial to a successful sale.  Active buyers have already seen everything currently on the market and are just waiting for the perfect house to hit their inbox. If you are priced right, right from the beginning you are going to maximize the number of buyers seeing your home.
  •  If your home is overpriced buyers will simply move on without even a second glance.
  • If you start doing price reductions over an extended period of time it will raise flags to potential buyers. They will wonder what is wrong with the house? Because obviously there must be something wrong if it isn’t selling, right?
  • Most buyers have a price set in their head and it’s usually a pretty even number, for example $300,000 or $320,000 and if you list your house for $300,900 or $320,9999 you’re missing A L O T of potential buyers who’s search is set a maximum just below your asking. Make sure to choose a number that makes sense.
  • It is also important to not UNDER PRICE your home, you will be swamped with showings and offers only to potentially lose thousands of dollars on one of your biggest investments.

The next questions you’re probably asking is, “How do we know the right price to list our house at??”

  • Always defer to the experts. An accurate home evaluation includes up-to-date information of the area and expert judgement.
  • Compare your home to recent (3-6 months) solds & what is currently active in your community
  • What makes your home stand out compared to them? Everything either adds or takes value away from your home. Garage or no garage? Finished or unfinished basement? Recent Upgrades or Original? Everything will effect the price of your home, especially big ticket items such as kitchen, bathrooms, new roofing, windows, etc. That is why it is important to have a neutral 3rd party do your evaluation.

Now.. What can you do get the MOST out of your home?

  • During our home evaluations we will always give you the best suggestions on what you can do around your home to add value. Generally if your home is in pretty good shape we suggest de-cluttering, paint touch ups and a really thorough clean.
  • Unless your property is in severe condition we do not suggest doing large overhauls; due to the fact you usually don’t get a large enough return to make it worth your time.
  • If you do choose to do any renovations or touch ups make sure to advise a professional decorator or a paint specialist to ensure you are choosing a neutral palette that will attract all buyers. You don’t want to push away potential buyers just because you choose a dark, unattractive paint colour for the living room.

What Does “Top Producer” Mean to You

March 13th, 2017 Comments off

Award season has ended for Hollywood but is just starting for Real Estate. We are proud to say the Gebran & Associates of Search Home in Edmonton team achieved the Medallion medallionAward for being in the TOP 10% of Sales in Edmonton & surrounding areas. But, this post isn’t to brag or pat ourselves on the back but to explain to you how a top producing agent can benefit you.

Firstly, you’re probably wondering what a “Top Producing Agent” is. It sounds good, it sounds successful, but it simply means that we sold among the highest total dollar amounts over the year of 2016. In the grand scheme of things, our total Sold Dollars don’t effect you as a buyer or seller but the qualities that help us achieve this title, do. If we weren’t good at our job it would be pretty unlikely we would reach the level of sales to qualify for TOP 10%. As a team we pride ourselves on offering top quality customer services to all our clients which in turn we are sent their referrals as well being their go-to REALTOR® for life, as somebody who works in customer service industry there is no bigger compliment then being referred to your friends and family after a successful deal. In our opinion here are the top characteristics you should look for in your REALTOR®, all of which we strive for as “Top Producing” agents.

  • Local Knowledge – We are lucky enough to have team members that specialize in all areas surrounding Edmonton. Although they all know Edmonton like the back of their hand it is awesome to have local buyer specialists. Whether it be Devon, Fort Saskatchewan, Sherwood Park, Leduc or Stony Plain you can bet we have an agent that knows the communities better than most.
  • Honesty & Integrity – We know REALTORS® are commonly classified as pushy, slimy sales people. Unfortunately there are some that fit those descriptions, only adding to the stigma. Our team proudly follows the Code of Ethics & Standards of Practices set out for us as REALTORS®. Your REALTOR® should be honest with you from the start, sometimes it isn’t always what you want to hear, but this is how you know your best interests are being looked out for.
  • Connections & Representation – Not only as a team do we have large sphere of influence but also have a lead generation website that generates hundreds of leads per month. Not only do we have plenty of potential buyers for our sellers but have healthy relationships with other local REALTORS® which lead to smooth, civil transactions.
  • Understanding of Technology – The Real Estate world has evolved since the days of ads in the newspaper.. Does anyone still read an actual printed newspaper? Every buyer (and seller) starts by checking out the market on the WWW. We make sure to market all our properties extensively on the web – MLS,, Kijiji, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Personal Websites, Office Websites, APPs, you name it really. If somebody is looking, they will find your property.  Not only is our marketing done online but we are also moving to more paperless transactions with electronic signing and file sharing via dropbox.
  • Inviting Personality – We have a range of agents on our team, all different and unique. We know one agent won’t work for every client. We work as a team to ensure you have the best agent for YOU. We are helping with one of the biggest investments of your life and this often entails spending a lot of time together and if you don’t like your agent it probably won’t be a very good experience for either of you. But don’t worry, all of our agents are pretty great people!
  • Hardworking – Being a Top Producing team involves a lot of work ethic. Our agents are motivated to help you find you the perfect home for your situation. It isn’t only about putting in the time, but also making smart decisions, educating our clients and doing everything can to make sure the deal closes.

We are very proud to say all our team members work tirelessly and emulate everyone of these characteristics and would like to congratulate each of them for excelling in their field.


The Best of the Average

February 10th, 2017 Comments off

Avg Price by CategoryThe Best of the Average


We have search all MLS for our 3 favorite available properties in Edmonton that fit into the 3 category, all BELOW the average sell price.






NO1. #301 1070 McConachie Blvd NW (MLS: E4049057) $240,000 

UPGRADED CORNER UNIT! This 3rd floor unit is the largest in the building at 1031sqft and holds a large master bedroom with walk threw closet to a 3 piece en suite. The second bedroom generously sized and situated on the opposite side of the unit, perfect for
roommate living. Kitchen has beautiful dark cabinetry and SS appliances. This unit is fully upgraded! GRANITE counters throughout, The main living area flooring is new laminate and ceramic tile. The west facing balcony gets all the evening sun and there’s AIR CONDITIONER built in for those hot summer days. This unit also has UNDERGROUND parking. Pride in ownership is evident in this unit you will not be disappointed.


NO2. #48 13825 155 AV NW (MLS: E4019836) $242,500

Very well maintained 2 story townhouse located in the desired community of Carton.
Features 2 master bedrooms up with both having 4 piece en-suites and walk-in closets. Main floor features beautiful laminate flooring as well as a nice sized living room with stone facing gas fireplace, a large island kitchen with upgraded stainless steel appliances, and a dining area with patio doors leading to a balcony with gas BBQ hook up. There is a small finished basement that has a storage area and a door that leads to 2 underground parking stalls. What a great place to call home.


NO3. 6G CALLINGWOOD CO NW (MLS: E4043834) $242,999

Great unit, FULLY RESTORED, WALK OUT BASEMENT. Million dollar finishes, New kitchen cabinets, backsplash, lighting and appliances. Large living room with modern colors. Good quality laminate floor and new baseboards, 2 bathrooms, fully renovated with new bathtub, toilets and cabinets, tiles, main shower / Fully finished basement, big backyard that backs onto GREENSPACE. Parking stall in front of the door.



NO1. #20 150 Everitt DR N(MLS: E4045372) $359,809

Beautiful home with a private treed view! Picturesque is This gorgeous “Empty Nester” style home with light and airy colour palette and chocolate kitchen cabinets complimented by beautiful laminate flooring. This functional 2 Master bedroom “Empty Nester” layout has an open concept den/family room on the main floor, living room, dining area and spacious island kitchen on first floor up. This first floor level also provided 2 covered balconies, one with a BBQ hookup for year round use! The top level easily displays the two Master bedrooms with ensuites and walk-in closest. Shared laundry is also on this level, so no more hauling baskets up and down! This gorgeous home is conveniently located and walkable! Around the corner we have a Costco, Micheals, Coffee shops, restaurants, schools, parks and lots of surprises in the works! Don’t miss out on the chance to own this beautiful unit with all appliances included, Double attached garage, 2 car parking pad


NO2. #69 2803 JAMES MOWATT TR SW (MLS: E4043957) $359,900

IMMACULATE, Contemporary, Air-conditioned, three bedroom, end unit, townhome loaded with desirable UPGRADES! From the moment you enter this stunning home, it is evident that it has been meticulously maintained & cared for throughout. Largest floorplan available in Atria, Engineered Laminate flooring, QUARTZ countertops throughout, Frigidaire Stainless Steel appliances, dramatic lighting, central Vac & oversize front load laundry are just a few of the enhancements. The OPEN floorplan is perfect for entertaining, with high ceilings & a sleek ISLAND Kitchen that offers tons of counter-space, cabinetry & lots of natural light that flows through the dining & living area with stylish fireplace! Finishing off this level is a powder room & patio located off the kitchen. The upper level offers a lovely master with TWO closets, an ensuite with FIVE FOOT walk-in shower, two additional bedrooms, 4-PC Bath, and convenient laundry. This property has a DBL car garage, low condo fees and is SURE TO IMPRESS!


NO3. 405 Genesis CO (MLS: E4046935) $360,900

Welcome home to beautiful Genesis Court in Prestigious GENESIS ON THE LAKES Stony Plain. Wonderfully crafted duplex with double attached garage. This home is in the building stage, perfect for someone looking to move in the Spring! Main floor is open concept with low maintenance vinyl plank floors, gas fireplace & patio doors to your finished deck w/gas hookup for BBQ. A half bath and laundry complete the main floor. Master is spacious w/walk-in closet and option for upgraded barn door feature to ensuite with his/hers sinks. 2 more good sized bedrooms and 4 piece bath are also found here. Front landscaping/fence INCLUDED and option to have basement finished! Located steps to Genesis Plaza Genesis Court is a short walk to the seven-acre Lake Genesis, two ponds, scenic walking trails, lush trees and landscaped features.


NO1. 1248 McConachie BV NW (MLS: E4036015) $429,900

The Ovation, deserves a standing ovation!! McConachie’s former show home will leave you feeling “Fine and Dandy” thanks to it’s stunning decor and style!Covered front porch has fantastic curb appeal.Main floor features a flex room and spacious lifestyle room plus a dream kitchen, with two-toned cabinetry that overlooks the backyard. Upstairs features three spacious bedrooms, including the master with a four-piece spa-style ensuite. Convenient second floor laundry room, and side by side 2nd and 3rd bedrooms complete this floor. The untouched basement waits for your finishing touches!!


NO2. 7204 21 AV SW (MLS: E4042001) $429,800

Beautiful 2 storey home, nestled in a quiet cul de sac -corner lot -3 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom, open floor plan -few minutes walk to a K-9 school and the gorgeous lake -large front varanda & side deck -9ft ceilings, tiled backsplash, pot lights in kitchen, beautiful dark
hardwood throughout the main level, gas fireplace in the great room, 4 stainless steel Samsung appliances and blinds on all 16 windows allows for natural sunlight all year long -unfinished basement -detached oversized 24′ x 24′ garage with an offset overhead door leaving room for a work bench/area -garage also built using an attic truss providing a huge storage space above with room to walk around freely -french doors off the side of house onto the deck – large yard fully fenced and landscaped w/raised garden & built in flowerbeds -lake access: kayaking, paddle boarding etc


NO3. 7078 CARDINAL WY SW (MLS: E4049550) $429,000

Better than New!!, Immaculately maintained and tastefully upgraded 3 bedroom two story in Chappelle. Situated on a large pie lot with front porch and back deck. Fully landscaped and fenced with double detached Garage. inside you will find built-ins and upgrades
through out. A large front entrance opening onto open concept living room, dining, and kitchen. The main floor also boasts a two piece bathroom, laundry, fireplace, granite countertops and eating bar in the kitchen that is absolutely perfect for entertaining. Upstairs we have 3 bedrooms and flex space, plus two full baths with linen closets behind the doors. The master is a very good size with a window seat built in, walk in closet with its own window, and full ensuite bath. This home is move in ready, also worth noting all appliance are stainless steel Samsung and included.



Source: for property information & pictures



How first time home buyers can increase their down payment

January 30th, 2017 Comments off

How first time home buyers can increase their down payment

First Time home buyers have the advantage of using their income tax returns to strategize and increase their down payment money through the Home Buyers’ Plan. This is a government program that allows first time home buyers to withdraw from their RRSP savings (even if they do not currently have any) and allows them to use the funds towards a down payment on a first home, tax-free and without paying a penalty.

Home Buyers Plan

First time home buyers can contribute the money they have saved for their down payment into an RRSP and benefit from a substantial tax refund. The contributions must be within an individual’s eligibleRRSP contribution limit. Under the Home Buyers’ Plan, you and your spouse or common-law partner can each withdraw up to $25,000 from your RRSP to help build or buy a first home for a combined total of $50,000.

RRSP contributions must be made in the first sixty days of 2017 in order to claim them on your 2016 income tax returns. File your income tax returns as soon as possible and claim your respective RRSP contributions. Based on 35% tax bracket and $25,000 each in contributions, you and your spouse or common-law partner could receive an income tax refund of up to $8,750 each. Now you and your spouse or common-law partner have a total of $67,500 ($17,500 tax refund + $50,000 Home Buyers’ Plan withdrawal) to use towards a down payment on your first home. In all cases, individuals are advised to seek appropriate professional tax advice.

After ninety days, you can withdraw up to $25,000 per person from the RRSPs through the Home Buyers’ Plan program. Not all of the funds need to be placed directly towards a home purchase. First time home buyers are free to choose how they use the money. Keep in mind that you must follow the down payment requirements outlined by your mortgage lender.

To ensure you do not pay tax on your RRSP withdrawal under the Home Buyers’ Plan, you must repay the withdrawn amount to your RRSP. Repayments will begin in the second year following the year that the funds were withdrawn with full repayment within 15 years. Any unpaid funds will be added to your income tax return and you will be expected to pay taxes on them.

Contact Rodney Biggar, mortgage specialist with The Biggar Team, if you have any questions about how this process will work for you. To find out if you are eligible for the Home Buyers’ Plan contact Canada Revenue Agency or check their website at for more information.

Courtesy of The Biggar Mortgage Team 






January 20th, 2017 Comments off

Home Buying Process

Congratulations! Purchasing a home or even thinking about buying a home is an exciting adventure. You will be joining the ranks of hundreds of families who have realized that home ownership offers a number of benefits. The benefits include building equity, saving for the future and establishing a home your family can call their own. Your hard-earned dollars contribute to your mortgage, not a landlord’s pocket. Overtime your home will increase in value and the equity you earn is ultimately yours! While your down payment and mortgage will cover the purchase price of your home, it’s wise to consider the other costs and steps involved in the home buying process.

Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage: Prior to shopping for a home, it is recommended that you begin the home buying process by getting a mortgage pre-approval. If you are unsure of how to start this process, give The Biggar Team a call. After you have received a mortgage pre-approval from your preferred mortgage lender, we will create a personalized property search. This will notify you with the new homes on the market, before they even hit

Viewing Homes: Once you have compiled a list of your favorite properties, we will start scheduling showings. Buying a home is both an emotional and financial step for your future; we are here to help you make the best decision for YOU.

Now that we have found a house that is a good fit for you, it is time to get a little more serious.

Writing an Offer: When you find the home you want, you will need to make a formal written offer. This is called an “offer to purchase”. The offer to purchase is a legally binding document which should be completed with due care and diligence. This document outlines what you, the buyer, will give (a combination of price and terms) to the seller in exchange for the home. We will work together to negotiate terms that work best for you, such as purchase price, deposit, conditions to protect you (home inspection and full mortgage approval) and a possession date.

You are now Pending: In the short time between final acceptance and removing conditions there are a few steps to take. Firstly, we will send the offer to purchase to your mortgage lender so they can begin the mortgage approval. Make sure to ask your mortgage specialist about your mortgage insurance options.

Next, we will schedule a home inspection for the property. The cost for a home inspection is dependent on a couple of different factors. It will range from $300 (condo) to $550 (house up to 2,000 sqft).

At this point you should also start looking for a lawyer who specializes in real estate transactions. The average cost for legal fees and related expenses will range from $1,000 – $1,800. When asking for quotes from lawyers, ensure they include all of the expenses (land transfer, disbursements, approximate property tax and utility adjustments, as well as base legal fees) related to your deal. Your lawyer will also require an up-to-date Real Property Report from the sellers. This will ensure accurate representation of the improvements and boundaries for the property.

Removing Conditions: Once all the conditions have been met to your satisfaction, a waiver of conditions will be completed confirming the home is now officially sold!

Depending on the possession date negotiated with the seller, you will have anywhere between 30 to 90 days to get everything ready for your new home.

It is a good idea to get everything organized well in advance of the closing date. This will reduce the stress of moving and make the home buying process go smooth.

  • Lawyers:The real estate agent will send your lawyer the information about your purchase. You will need to provide the lawyer with some additional information: insurance, down payment information, fee payments, adjustment payments and possibly other signed documents that they ask for. You will meet with the lawyer about a week before the closing to finalize everything.
  • Down Payment and Closing Costs:Make the necessary arrangements to have the funds available when the lawyer asks for them. Liquidating some assets can require some additional time.
  • Movers:Whether you are using professional movers, renting a truck or getting a bunch of friends together, plan and organize early.
  • Insurance:The lawyers will need a copy of your home insurance policy before closing. Call your insurance broker with the listing information. They may also want to know the age of the house, the condition of the roof, furnace, electrical system as well as other general information.
  • Change of Address:It’s time to start giving out your new address to everyone. Use a checklist to make sure you have everything covered.
  • Utilities:It is important to call local utility companies to get the new homes services changed into your name. These include phone, internet, television, gas, electricity, water and any rental agreements. Remember to cancel the services at your old address.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask. This is simply a quick snapshot of the home buying process.

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