Oakville Homes

September 17, 2010

Toronto Star – good article on Rookie Mistakes.


Back on September 8th, the Toronto Star had a good article titled: “Rookie mistakes to avoid when buying your first home”.  I have waited hoping it would show up on their website but, no joy that way.  But, I feel that the points are very relevant and so I will give you the Reader’s Digest version of this Vivian Song article.


1: Jumping into home-ownership without understanding the implications.  Such things as a lease if you are renting, the stability of your employment and routine maintenance

2: Not getting pre-approved.  Find out in advance just how much money you can get to play with and how much it will cost you per month.  Watch your debt load – remember, you don’t want to be house poor.

3: Underestimating the costs. Not only mortgage but closing costs (lawyer, real estate, inspections, taxes, moving, insurance, etc, etc, etc).  Maybe new appliances or those monthly condo fees.

4: Having preconceived notions about downtown or suburban living.  Do you want to live downtown near work or have the added expense of commuting from the burbs.  Also, what is in the community you are going to live in.

5: Not considering the resale value of the home.  What you like may not be something others will enjoy or buy.  Also, how close are the amenities?

6: Not shopping around for the best mortgage.  The stated rates are negotiable and you have to ask around.  Banks, brokers or private – they all have different rates.  Also look for incentives that will assist you, especially in a fixer-upper.

7: Not doing a home inspection.  No need to elaborate there if you’ve read my blog.

8: Letting your emotions dominate.  Don’t get caught up in the real estate feeding frenzy and make sure you look at all aspects.  Have someone with you who will be more detached in their outlook.  Yes, the paint looks great and the wall switch plates are to die for but……………

I wish I had a link to Ms. Song’s article so that you could read all the points in full.  If anyone finds a link let me know.  Her points are very relevant and could save you thousands of dollars and a lot of heartache.  A recent show I saw showed a very lovely modern styled house.  The buyers loved the open concept.  They found out that the open concept was possible because someone removed a load bearing wall.  Someone’s handy workmanship covered up the obvious for a sale but, left the homeowners with a gutted house to rebuild.  Don’t let the heart run the sale – let it do the decorating afterwards.
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