20 Nov Understanding Home Buying for First-Time Buyers in Barrie Real Estate Market
So, you’ve decided to enter the Barrie Real Estate market! Buying your first home is not only exciting, it can be scary. It is the single largest purchase that most people in Canada will make in their lifetime. Lawyers can’t advise you on the financial prudence of this decision or on the price of any given home, but there are some things to consider from the legal point of view.
Land Transfer Tax Waived for First-Time Home Buyers
Let’s start with some good news! First time home buyers get up to $4,000 of Land Transfer Tax waived. Even if you are buying with someone who has owned a home previously, you may still qualify for a reduction of a portion of the Land Transfer Tax. This is helpful when you consider all of the other costs of buying a home that are not included in the listing price.
What Costs are Excluded from List Price When You Buy a Home?
There are many costs associated with buying a home that are excluded from the list price of a home. These costs include:
- Title Insurance
- Mortgage Insurance
- Land Transfer Tax
- New Homes Closing Costs – can include tree plantings, driveway paving, Tarion enrollment, HST (there is an HST rebate that mitigates this cost)
- Condo Fees
- Legal Fees
- Moving Costs
Do You Need a Real Estate Lawyer for Buying a Home?
Your realtor can help you with the purchase process, but it never hurts to have a second set of eyes on the Agreement of Purchase and Sale. You can ask your realtor to include a clause requiring “Buyer’s solicitor approval” which would typically allow your lawyer some time to review the Agreement and make changes if needed.
Once the deal is firm, your lawyer will order a title search and potentially some other searches known as “off-title” searches. These searches ensure that you are obtaining title, free from encumbrances, liens, etc. The lawyer will also explain to you any easements or rights of way that might be remaining on title. This is one of the most important functions a real estate lawyer provides.
If you have a specific use for the property other than its current use, a lawyer can assist you in determining if that use is legally possible. If a survey is provided, a lawyer can provide additional advice regarding boundaries, set-backs, easements, whether structures were built with or without permits (in conjunction with a building and zoning search), etc. If you are not provided with a survey, many issues that might have been revealed by a survey will have coverage under your policy.
Find the Right Lawyer for Your Purchase