If I had a nickel for every time I’ve had this discussion with clients – and even at home! Many of you might think that this is a question limited to first-time home buyers, but you’d be wrong. It’s also quite a common question among buyers who also have to sell and want to make a change (larger home, different town, fresh idea of how to live), and downsizers, who cling to “will we be able to give this up” and “what about all the equity we’ve built up?” We even have this discussion here at home, and on a semi-regular basis.
Megann Willson's blog
Last night on Netflix we were watching the show How to Get Rich with Ramit Sethi. He’s got a great manner and gives some solid advice that applies, even if you don’t live in the USA, on saving and paying down debt, and most importantly, having money conversations in your relationship. When people tell me they want to own a home, I ask them what they know about their finances. Usually they don’t know much, frankly.
What came to mind when you read that headline? Over the past couple of years, many buyers I’ve spoken with have been asking about when the market would peak – or when it would reach the bottom of the trough. They were focused on a single point in time, and the idea that a buyer or seller can “time the market”. Decades of analysis have shown that that approach is simply unreliable. It is virtually impossible to buy at the absolute lowest point, or sell at the absolute peak. There are simply too many factors at play.
In order to encourage people to save more toward a first home, and to build beyond the limits of the HBP program – the RRSP home savings option, the Government passed a bill to set up the FHSA.
Whether it’s their first time buying a home, or their fifth, I find that Buyers and Sellers often forget some of the terminology included in their offer documents. Yes, it’s your agent/broker’s job to make sure you’re informed, yet in my experience, these are explanations we end up delivering time, after time, after time. There is a LOT of paperwork – more than you could have imagined, and surprisingly, even more if you are a tenant renting a property via a Realtor®.
Downsizing. What does that word conjure up for you? Do you think of it as losing things, or gaining something?
When purchasing a first home, this is often a topic of discussion. Those bright, shiny ads from builders/developers do look wonderful, and particularly if you have been renting for some time, the idea of living in a place that has been yours, and only yours, can be seductive. As someone who has lived in both types, I feel well-qualified to talk about some of the pros and cons of each one.
The kitchen is the heart of the home, they say – and when we are in inflationary times (like now), it’s also the place where we’re often most cognizant of rising prices. It’s also the place where we may wish we could do something about the chunk that’s being taken out of our paycheque. Utility bills are hard to manage – sure, we can wear a sweater and turn down the heat or try and remember to turn off lights when we leave a room.
Home ownership is something that many aspire to, and it’s a great option as long as you enjoy taking on responsibility and making decisions. Are you a decisive person? Many renters I know, tell me that they wish they owned their own place so that they didn’t have to rely so much on what the landlord wants, or follow so many rules. Unfortunately with the “freedom” of home ownership comes a lot of duty and obligation – to care for a property, keep it up, pay taxes, and so on. And if you don’t like criticism?
Another rate hike today, bringing interest rates to the highest they’ve been since 2008. If your household is like most, you’ve seen the price of everything go up over the past few months – food, clothing, housing, household essentials, transportation, and more. That means whether you’ve been saving up to buy a home, or you already have a mortgage, you’re feeling the pinch. Because you know the one thing that probably hasn’t gone up: your income.