“From being more thorough in their budget to exploring their mortgage options carefully, many first time buyers think they could have prepared better for their house-hunt,” says Farhaneh Haque, Director of Mortgage Advice, TD Canada Trust. “Prospective buyers can learn from other buyers’ mistakes. If you think you’re ready for home ownership, do your research and make sure you know as much as you can about the process and on-going commitment.”
I was shocked by this figure. I know that when I have a first time buyer, I always go over the costs with them. I've put together a info letter on all the steps from pre-approval up to possession. Some people have rented their whole lives and don't know anything about buying a home and the costs involved. In addition, Canada and the United States are countries that attract large numbers of immigrants. The home buying process is very different in other countries and these people need to be educated in order to make proper decisions.
You may think of legal costs, appraisals and surveys as being common knowledge but it really isn't. Many people are in the dark about the whole home buying process. I find the hardest thing for first time homebuyers to get their heads around is reconciliation of the property taxes. They don't quite get the part about the sellers having paid next years' taxes and that they have to re-pay the seller for this.
How niave are people? I had a lady contact me 4 years ago. She said she wanted to buy a home and she had 3 children and a well behaved dog. I wondered why she would include this information in her email to me. Then the penny dropped, this woman has always rented and having a well behaved dog is important to landlords.
I responded to her and asked her where she was going to live and what sort of a budget did she have. She asked me what houses I had available. I then realized that this lady thought that a mortgage broker and a realtor were the same thing. I wrote her back and suggested she contact a realtor and that I would only be able to help her with the financial side of the home buying process.
If 60% of first time homebuyers in Canada feel that there were hidden costs that they had not budgeted for then banks and mortgage brokers are not doing their jobs properly. By asking just one more question;-Do you know all the costs involved in buying a home? - 60% of home buyers would be feeling satisfied now.
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My question for you, my readers , is - What did a first time home buyers say or do that surprised you, even though you are a real estate professional?