Sooo You Want to Buy a House?

First time buyers, upgraders, downsizers, I’ve seen and worked with all of them. No matter how experienced or inexperienced they are, surprises always pop up. Here’s what to know before diving into buying a house.

1. Prior to making an offer to purchase, do your research. Ask another broker to also do research to find out what similar houses have sold for in the area. You don’t want to overpay.

2. Get pre-approved for a mortgage and lock in a rate. Mortgage rates are extremely low right now, locking in a low rate for a few months until you find a good property will lower your monthly payments and you may be able to afford more.

3. The promise to purchase is a contract binding the buyer and the seller. Only make an offer if you are going to go through with it. If an offer is accepted and you want to cancel it, the seller may be able to sue you for the full amount of the purchase price.

4. Double check and triple check. If you are buying a condo that has condo fees, ask for proof of what the condo fees are.  Mistakes can happen. The amount of condo fees appearing on the listing can be erroneous as can the municipal taxes. You don’t want any surprises when you get to the notary. Also find out how the amount of funds in the reserve (don’t know what that means? contact me :))

5. Fees involved in purchasing a property include the purchase price, inspection fees, notary fees, adjustments of municipal and school taxes, adjustments of condos fees and the welcome tax among others.

6. Choose your broker wisely. I just worked on the sale of a condo where I was representing the seller. The buyer’s broker did not ask to see the financial statements of the condo, the broker did not respect deadlines, the broker did not follow through with important elements of the offer, thus resulting with an unhappy buyer.

7. Do your homework. Did the neighbor’s house sell low because of the market or because the owner had 2 mortgages and couldn’t keep up with both mortgages?

8. Get everything in writing!

For additional tips or to negotiate the best deal, contact Monique Assouline, Montreal Real Estate Broker at



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