6 myths to dispel about buying a home

When buying a property, especially when it's your first experience, it is easy to get lost between the panoply of hearsay and the information you find online. Wrong beliefs can negatively impact the buying process. How to distinguish the true from the false? Here are 6 myths to dispel about buying a home.

1. Renting an apartment is a waste of money

Renting an apartment instead of buying is not necessarily a waste of money.

The purchase of a property, condo or house, represents a significant sum if we consider all the costs: down payment, taxes, co-ownership fees (condo), maintenance, etc. Ultimately, the expenses of owning a home can exceed the cost of renting. It can therefore be advantageous to rent an apartment for a few years to accumulate a good down payment and prepare a budget for the expenses related to the purchase and maintenance of a property.

Costs associated to buying a property

2. All you need is some money for the down payment

While the down payment is the largest cost of buying a home, you need a budget for other expenses.

Indeed, the purchase of a property generates several costs: notary fees, building inspection fees, welcome tax, sales taxes (in the case of a new property), moving costs, etc. You will also need to add the mortgage loan insurance to your mortgage if your down payment is less than 20%. Unless your property is turnkey, you may have some work to plan for in the short term. You will also have to plan a cushion in case of surprises.

If this is your first home, make sure you have a certain amount set aside to adjust for costs without ending up with bad surprises.

3. It is worth moving to the suburbs to find a more affordable property

In general, properties are more affordable in the suburbs than in the city for the same living space. However, you have to take your lifestyle into consideration before making a decision.

The choice of neighbourhood is not to be taken lightly. Several criteria are to be considered when choosing your future neighbourhood so that you can find your account in your daily life. If you like the action, maybe a family suburb isn't right for you even if you've saved up on the purchase price of your property. On the other hand, getting away from the city means, among other things, longer trips to work or to access the entertainment of the city. Gas is an additional expense to consider in this case.

In other words, the financial aspect should not be the only criterion to determine the choice of your future property. Make sure you find a neighbourhood that meets your needs beyond the purchase price to feel good about your new home.

4. You do not need to obtain mortgage pre-approval to start your real estate search

Mortgage pre-approval is theoretically not mandatory to start your real estate research, but it is strongly recommended in order to put the odds in your favor. It gives you a head start in your buying process.

Knowing your borrowing capacity will allow you to research only the properties that you can buy. You have a fair idea of your situation to avoid unpleasant surprises during the promise to purchase.

With mortgage pre-approval, you will be able to play your cards right in the context of overbids and multi-offers so as not to exceed your budget. Being pre-approved also gives you the opportunity of making an offer to buy quickly, advantage over an unapproved buyer, for example.

Why apply for mortgage preapproval

5. Performing a pre-purchase inspection is not essential

Failure to do a pre-purchase inspection will not prevent you from proceeding with the buying of property, but you will expose yourself to other risks.

The building inspection gives you a better understanding of the condition of the building. You will know what are its strengths and weaknesses and can predict the work and associated costs. This will avoid unpleasant surprises which can turn out to be very costly. In more extreme cases, if the inspection reveals major imperfections, you may be able to retract and cancel the purchase without incurring a financial burden.

6. You don't need a real estate broker to buy a property

It is possible to buy a property without the help of a real estate broker. However, there are some important advantages of doing business with one.

A real estate broker is an expert who manages all of the information essential to the success of your purchase. He will be with you, from start to finish, to find the perfect property for you and to get you the best possible deal.

Why buying a house with a real estate broker

You give yourself peace of mind working with a real estate broker on one of the biggest deals of your life.

It is essential not to stop at preconceived ideas and take the time to educate yourself in order to make the best possible decision for your real estate purchase project.