What benefits are there to having The Envelope Group represent me in buying a home, rather than doing it on my own?
Our Sales Partners are equipped with many tools to find you the perfect home. We enter your wants and needs into our internal Multiple Listing Service/Matrix system (only available to licensed Realtors®) and set you up to receive our complimentary Just Listed program. Being able to view homes before they appear anywhere else gives you an advantage over those not working with a Realtor®, and you can rest assured that you’ll not miss out on any good buys or that special place.
Our exclusive Dedicated Buyer Program provides an objective and unbiased view on the property’s true worth and removes the emotion from the buying process. We take the time up front to understand your needs, reviewing your criteria and designing a strategy to meet your goals. We then, (at no cost to you, we only get remunerated AFTER you have successfully taken possession of your home) undertake an extensive research to match your purchasing criteria with properties for sale.
We even have access to many properties that may never appear on the open market (sometimes called “exclusive listings” or "pocket listings")
In most cases, viewings of properties can be arranged quickly, we have access to all properties listed on the MLS system.
We are so confident in our ability to find the right home for you, that we are the only real estate company in London that will back up its ability with the Exclusive Love it or Leave It Plan!
How much do I need for a down payment?
A down payment is the amount of money you pay upon closing, and is required to obtain a mortgage.
• For homes with a purchase price less than or equal to $500,000 the minimum down payment is 5%
• For homes with a purchase price greater than $500,000 and less than $1 million, the minimum down payment is 5% of the first $500,000 plus 10% of the remaining balance
• For homes with a purchase price of $1 million or more, the minimum down payment is 20%
Don't have a down payment yet?
If you don’t have a down payment saved for your first home, you have other options. One is borrowing up to $25,000 of your RRSP savings (per person; $50,000 per couple) under The Government of Canada Home Buyer’s Plan program, (HBP).
There is also lease-to-own and 100% financing that may enable you to achieve homeownership sooner. A word of Caution: 100% financing and lease-to-own can be quite costly in the long run. We have excellent relationships with many mortgage specialists that can outline your options.
Why should I get pre-approved?
You’ll find house-hunting is much easier when you have mortgage pre-approval. You’ll save time, you will only see homes that fit your budget, you can lock in the interest rate which is typically guaranteed for 120 days, and your pre-approved status will show home sellers and their Realtors® that you are a serious buyer, which can really help during negotiations.
The Envelope Group works with exceptional mortgage specialists who will guide you on your home buying journey and offer great rates that save you money. There’s no cost to you and you’re not obligated to accept the mortgage when it comes time to buy.
Do I really need a Home Inspection?
A home inspection is an investment, not an expense when purchasing a home, and we highly recommend it. The purpose of a home inspection is to reveal all deficiencies in the home. Even in newer homes, minor items are to be expected.
However, at times, there may be larger deficiencies that may need to be addressed. Conducting a home Inspection will help alleviate any unwanted surprises. A home inspection is a cost incurred by you, the buyer, and the day the service is performed. Home inspection costs range from $300-$700 depending on the size of the home and the type of service provided. Typically a home inspection is anywhere from 2-3 hours depending on the size of the home.
There are also other forms of inspections that we may advise such as: Environmental Testing, Wood Burning Fireplace Inspections, Septic Systems, HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning ) or an ESA Certificate (Electrical Safety Authority)
What expenses are there when buying my first home, and when?
There are many costs to consider when buying, we have a detailed breakdown of costs to consider and we will walk you through a full list of expenses to expect when it comes time to buy. Make sure you identify and uncover all costs-large and small, way ahead of time. Again, we will discuss this with you, and you should discuss all fees and costs with your lender, your lawyer and any other professional you may use.
What is the fee to work with The Envelope Group?
As a valued buying client, you work with one of our Realtors® at no cost to you. The fee for our service is entirely covered by the home seller, which is the industry standard.
Do I have to pay HST on the purchase of a re-sale home?
No. HST does not apply on the purchase of a re-sale home, so you only have to budget for this expense if you are buying a new home. If you do purchase new, keep in mind that you can claim a rebate for some of the provincial portion of the tax incurred on homes priced up to $500,000.
What is the First-Time Home Buyers’ Tax Credit (HBTC)?
The First-Time Home Buyers’ Tax Credit (HBTC) is a non-refundable tax credit intended to help first time buyers cover costs associated with purchasing a home, and must be claimed in the year the property was purchased. You can claim an amount of $5,000 for the purchase of a qualifying home, if both of the following apply:
• you or your spouse or common-law partner acquired a qualifying home; and
• you did not live in another home owned by you or your spouse or common-law partner in the year of acquisition or in any of the four preceding years (first-time home buyer).
Do I have to pay Land Transfer Tax?
When you buy land or an interest in land in Ontario, you pay land transfer tax. First-time homebuyers of an eligible home may be eligible for a refund of all or part of the tax.
To claim a refund, you must be at least 18 years of age, you cannot have owned a home or an interest in a home anywhere in the world, and your spouse cannot have owned a home or interest in a home, anywhere in the world while he or she was your spouse. Previous ownership in a home means you do not qualify for the land transfer tax first-time homebuyer’s refund. The method of acquiring the home (e.g., purchase, gift or through an inheritance) is not relevant.
You cannot re‑qualify as a first‑time homebuyer. This rule may be different from other federal programs for first‑time homebuyers (e.g., the Canada Revenue Agency Home Buyers' Plan).
Land Transfer Tax Refunds for First-Time Homebuyers
As you have read, there are quite a few steps in the home buying process, having a trusted Realtor® to guide you is the next step. We invite you to meet with one of our buyer specialists to further discuss how we can help you find the perfect home.