Is this your first time buying a home? Buying a new home can be both nerve-wracking and exciting, while always offering a new experience.

Envision the house you would like to buy. 

This vision… it’s important because it frames in your mind the preferences you have vis-a-vis your financial capacity to purchase such a home.

A financially informed home buyer is able to gain valuable insight into their finances and is capable of making sensible decisions. This can also save you time! 

Being prepared allows for streamlined home searching that’s both efficient and enjoyable.

To help you with that list, here are the most important characteristics and features you need to consider when buying a home.

1. Location

As the cliche goes, “The three most important factors when choosing a property to buy are location, location and location.” In purchasing a home, it pays to do your homework before making an offer.

Access to Local Amenities

The ease of which you can access grocery stores, shops, hospitals, fire stations, local schools, transit and other community facilities can make a real difference.

Neighborhood

Explore the neighborhood at various times throughout the week. Really immersing yourself and following your intuition.

Unpleasant ambient noises such as rowdy neighbors or railway tracks can create a bothersome environment. Garbage dumps, local bars and even air traffic may be intrusive. Listen to and smell what’s going on while considering your wants and needs.

2. Property Attributes
home buying in Ontario

Other than the location, knowing the condition of the property you want to buy is crucial. This can save you from costly and unexpected repairs.

Size of the Property

How much space do you require? This question checks the practicality and necessity of the size of the home you’re buying. Are you living alone or are you living with family? Consider how many people will be living in the house.

Know that the bigger the property, the higher the cost… you’ll pay more in maintenance and property taxes. Being financially prepared is a must. 

House Construction

Look for major structural defects like cracks, wet drywall, water stains, etc. These are indications that the house may contain hidden problems. Not doing your due diligence can lead to a costly and unfortunate disaster.

A home inspection is recommended to identify any of these problems and more that may need attention.

Selling Price

Budget is everything when it comes to home buying. Of course, you want your dream house, in a great location for the best possible price.

Be mindful of your budget when choosing a home. It’s always worth paying a little extra for a home you want to buy if it’ll provide peace of mind. If a higher-priced home can save you time and money in the long run, then home shopping on the higher end of your budget may be a wise decision.

3. Be Realistic About Repairs and Renovations

Dreaming is the start of any good renovation, but you have to be realistic about what you can accomplish based on your budget, resources and the existing structure of the home.

Kitchen

When evaluating the home’s kitchen, consider its design and function. Can you live with the style and color or is an immediate remodel necessary? Are there any chipped or broken tiles? Are the appliances in good condition or will you need to buy new ones?

Take note of anything you’ve noticed upon your visit to the kitchen. That’ll help you determine if the home you’re looking at is a match or not.

Living Room

The living room is where your family spends the majority of time at home. It’s where you entertain guests and spend your evenings “Netflixing and chilling.” 

Upon entering a home, a living space must have a friendly and relaxed vibe, being one of the first spaces to be seen. Also, check on the lighting source the area receives, which is great for quiet time and reading.  

Energy Efficient Windows and Appliances

Energy costs sum up a large portion of monthly household expenses. That’s why, in buying a house, it’s essential to know about a home’s energy performance to avoid unexpected costs after moving in. 

Check window features such as air sealing and insulation. These factors can ensure that you’ll have year-round comfort. Also, look for Energy Star certified appliances, inefficient ones may require upgrading.

Number of Bedrooms

When deciding to consider how many bedrooms your new house should have, the most crucial factor is family size. Of course, you’ll want more bedrooms if you have a battalion. Generally, larger homes may take longer to resell.

Lawn/Outdoor Activity Area

Lawns, gardens, patios and outdoor areas are of top priority for home buying these days, especially with barbecue season around the corner… we hope. Ignoring any landscaping issues can also add up!

Look for unhealthy trees that can pose a risk of falling on your home, cars or even power lines. A tree’s roots can damage the foundation, walkways or patios if too close. How’s the landscaping, cracked or sound? Walk around and check on its status throughout.

Choosing the Right Mortgage Broker

Terrific! Your offer has been accepted. Now that it’s been accepted, be sure your mortgage broker is provided with a copy of the Agreement of Sale, MLS listing and any remaining documents if any. 

Remember that every deal counts. The longer a mortgage broker has been in the business, the more they would’ve learned. They should be with you every step of the way, long after your deal has closed. This relationship is a lifetime commitment. Be sure to voice concerns and utilize their experience and take advantage of every opportunity to stay connected.


Daisy Raouph, CLU, CHS, specializes in mortgage financing solutions and financial services. A Mortgage Broker and Financial Security Advisor with over 30 years of experience in financial services. Contact us today to review your mortgage financing options. We can help!