The London Condo Professionals 
Ty Lacroix Broker of Record 181 Commissioners Road W London, ON N6J 1X9
Phone: 519-435-1600 Email Ty

Do This Before Buying a Condo in London Ontario


In a recent survey,  condo buyers said they wish they had taken more time before they started the process of buying a condo in London.

 The first step was deciding to move,  to stop renting or downsizing from a larger house. All good so far.

                                            searching to buy a condo in London

 Then, most went and spoke to a mortgage lender( this is a significant and crucial step and be careful whom you talk to, I cover that in another report) to see what they qualified for and if they could get a mortgage. 

 Then what?

 Yup, started searching the MLS listings, Kijiji, real estate websites and real estate magazines (that are usually a month old) and what did they do? They called 4 or 5 real estate salespeople who had listings they wanted to see and set up an appointment.

 While making those appointments, they all heard the same thing:

  • Are you pre-approved for a mortgage?

 

  • Are you working with an agent?

 

  • Do you have a house to sell?

 

  • Perhaps a few more personal questions or the name of your cat or dog! (just kidding)

 

                                                              condos in london buying questions

 Then they went to see a few units, and if they liked one, they put in an offer with the listing salesperson without any research or thought of the long-term consequences.

   Or, the condo is not to their liking, but they liked the salesperson, and the Realtor convinced them that they could help look for something else, again, without any research of that agent or thought of the long-term consequences!

  The wisest thing that someone can do after they have decided to move, is to research and contact the real estate salesperson who they are comfortable with, has the skills and experience and whom you will entrust your hard earned money!

 Maybe interview two or three.

 Then when you have confidence in the salesperson you have chosen, that right real estate person will research properties on your behalf, make appointments to match your timetable, protect you in the buying and offer process and be there if any challenges come up.

 Do you not think that having that type of representation would be better for you than just entrusting that binding faith with just anyone? A friend of a friend, Uncle Joe's distant cousin who just got her license and needs some money, or your co-worker who's husband 'does' real estate on the side!


Before Buying a Condo


  Before buying a condo in London Ontario, following these ideas, tips and real-life experiences and then implementing them most likely will save you money, time, worry and allow you to sleep better!

 Buying a condo in London & South West Ontario can be a roller coaster of emotions. Finding the right one that fits your budget and lifestyle.  Securing a mortgage and moving in. And, if you’re like most, this condo may be your most substantial investment. Emotions over such a large and personal purchase can often cloud common sense & unbridled enthusiasm.

                            Home Buying Tips

 Many condo buyers do very little research before “diving in” and investing their hard-earned money. Oh, they may have been going to 'open houses,' searching MLS or viewing realtor websites and that is usually all they do.

 Below are a few ideas and with the help of the right real estate professional, (ask them these 11 questions first)you’ll make a good sound decision that you’ll be happy and proud of for years to come.

     Inspect, Review and Double Check:

   Get a home inspection by a professional home inspector who is thorough and can explain to you his or her findings. For apartment condos, you may or may not want to do the inspection yourself because the windows, doors, roof etc. are covered by the condo corporation. Turn on all the appliances, the heat or A/C, all lights, flush the toilets and run all the taps in the house and check electrical switches and receptacles.

  Have your lawyer review the Status Certificate which will cover the by-laws and fees, restrictions and the financial status of the condo corporation. 

  Don’t take anything for granted, inspect everything!

    Imagine the unit vacant:

  Your furnishings and decorations will be the ones filling this new residence. Don’t be swayed by beautiful furniture, it leaves with the owner.

    Income plus Lifestyle Equals Mortgage Payment:

  Sit down with us and honestly discuss your income level and living expenses. Take into account future considerations like job security or transfer, lifestyle, amenities or fix-ups. 

    View More Than One Building or Neighbourhood:

  Go through at least 4-6 properties. Don’t get excited on the first property you see, if you like it, use it as a yardstick and if the others do not compare, act quickly.  With a patient Realtor, you’ll be able to view enough properties to get a proper overall perspective of your market. And when you find the right property, all the legwork will be worth it.

  Utilize The Professionals You Are Working With: 

  By aligning yourself with the right real estate professional, you’ll have an entire group of professionals working for you. Top Realtors have lenders, inspectors, appraisers, lawyers, tradespeople, cleaners, an entire group of trained professionals making the whole buying experience simple and easy for you.

   More Checking to Do: 

 Check out all your costs and expense before you sign: condo fees, utilities, cable, taxes and insurance. Make sure all utilities are on (gas, electricity, and water) when you do see the unit,  so you can inspect everything is in working order, Ask lots of questions and be very detail conscious. (I use a detailed room by room review manual with every client, it covers everything)

   Do a Final Walk-Through Before Closing: 

 Visit the property 2-3 days with your Realtor before you move in to make sure there are no surprises. Be sure the appliances, fixtures and any chattels are still there as you had agreed upon when the offer was accepted. Many times, things get overlooked that will not be in a final walk-through. (This is a standard clause in my Agreement of Purchase and Sale)

  Plan for Flexibility if Needed: 

 Closing dates are not written in stone. Allow for contingencies and have a backup plan. If you or the sellers need a little more time to conclude the final arrangements, don’t let these delays upset or frustrate you. These types of circumstances are not uncommon in a real estate transaction; however, with a great real estate professional and his/her teams, this will seldom occur.

  If it’s Not in Writing, It Doesn’t Exist: 

 All promises and discussions are to be in writing. Don’t make any assumptions or believe any assurances from anyone. Even the best intentions at times are misinterpreted. Have your real estate professional keep an ongoing log (in writing) of all discussions, and get the seller’s written approval for all agreements. 

 search condos in London Ontario on MLS

                                         Contact us-Sutton Group Envelope Real Estate Brokerage

 Below are some good things to know

 

What Do All These Real Estate Words Mean Anyway?
What do all these real estate words mean? Learn a few, that way never will a lawyer, Realtor, economist, mortgage lender or your hair dresser ever confuse you again!
What About a Home Inspection?
There are several reasons for having a home inspection, but the most compelling reason is that the inspector looks at the property differently than a purchaser does. 1 The actual job of an inspector is to look for major problems visible the day of the home inspection to help you reduce your risk. 2 A good home inspector will also give you an education on the operation of the systems of your home. 3 A great Home Inspector will give you an understanding of how to solve the problems found that day which will ultimately give you enough information to make a good buying decision with everything you have learned. The BIG Question: Who is a great home inspector and how do I know?
The Role of a Lawyer in Your Condo Purchase
The role of the purchaser’s lawyer is to protect you, the purchaser, throughout the transaction, and to make sure that you obtain good title to your new property. The purchaser’s lawyer also represents the interests of your mortgage lender in preparing and registering the mortgage documents. Tips on what to ask a lawyer.
Who Else is Going To Be Involved When I Buy Real Estate?
There can be many other professionals or non-professionals involved in your real estate transaction. A good thorough Realtor will ensure you are working with qualified professionals and with experience and trial and error, they will only work with the more competent lawyers, home inspectors and mortgage lenders.
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4 Prudent Condo Buying Decisions


 When Buying a Condo in London Ontario, 4 Decisions You May Want To Make Before You Go Out & See a Few.

   Buying a house or buying a condo in London and South West Ontario can be an exciting yet overwhelming series of emotions, both negative and positive.

                         Buying a condo in London Ontario

   I know that when I meet buyers for the first time, be it first time buyers or 5th time buyers and go through a checklist of the buying process, I often hear: “You know, I never even thought of that!”

   Below are some things to think about and get answers for or to decide on before you buy and during the buying process as well.

  • How much exactly have you been pre-approved for a mortgage, is it in writing and at what rate and is that rate guaranteed and for how long?

 

  • What lawyer are you going to use? Do they specialize in real estate and what is their fee, not just their real estate fee but their disbursements! (You would be surprised at the stories I hear where that low fee did not turn out to be flat! Yes, the price was small, but additional charges such as filing fees, record keeping, and blah and blah fees add up!) Get it in writing; they are lawyers, which would be their advice to you!

 

  • When working with a Realtor, do you have to sign a buyer agency contract? Not sure or what is Buyer Agency? Have your Realtor explain buyer agency to you and if they insist you sign one before showing any homes, fully understand what you are signing and how long are you committed to that REALTOR. In most cases you don’t and won’t mind being engaged, but what if your relationship is not working out? Be careful!

 

  • What about a home inspection? Do not leave that to chance or google the least expensive inspector on the web. Home inspectors in Ontario are not regulated and would you trust hundreds of thousands of dollars for a home inspection to save $100 or $200?

 

  These four are very important, and a prudent buyer would be wise to follow this advice.

   Buying a condo in London Ontario & area is the easy part, it is the details not followed that will make you toss and turn at night.

 Be prepared and sleep well!


Use This Great Mortgage Tool


  Let us help you find out what you can afford! Our mortgage calculator will help you determine loan amounts, mortgage qualification, or whether you should be renting or buying.

  Complete the fields below (e.g., Cost of Home, Down Payment, Monthly Income) and click Calculate Now. To view the different results of your calculation, click on the various tabs. To mail yourself a copy of your results, click the Receive this Detailed Analysis link.

 

Required Fields
Term In Years:     
Interest Rate:      %
Cost of Home:  $
Down Payment:  $  
Annual Insurance:  $  
Estimate Insurance to 0.43% of Cost
Annual Property Tax:  $  
Estimate Tax to 1.2% of Cost
Monthly Income:  $
Monthly Debt:  $
Optional Fields
Gross Debt Service Ratio (GDS):     
Total Debt Service Ratio (TDS):     
Condos Fees:  $
Results
  Receive this Detailed Analysis

Your Monthly Payments
 
Loan Amount:
Loan Insurance (%):
Total Loan (Mortgage) Amount:
 
Principal & Interest:
Homeowners Insurance:
Property Taxes:
Condo Fees:
Monthly Loan Insurance (%):
Total Monthly Payment:
Income Needed to Qualify for the Mortgage
Total Monthly Loan Payment:
Total Monthly Debt Payment:
Monthly Loan Insurance (%):
Qualifying Income of % GDS Ratio:
Qualifying Income of % TDS Ratio:
What You Can Afford
We are using the % ratio.
Cost of House:
Down Payment:
Loan Value:
Monthly Principal & Interest:
Monthly Insurance:
Monthly Property Tax:
Monthly Condo Fees:
 
Cost of House = [(Monthly income x Debt Ratio) – monthly tax – monthly insurance – condo fee] /
(monthly interest rate/ function of interest rate)
Renting
Monthly Rent: $
Annual Rental Increases:  %
Monthly Renter Insurance: $
Savings or Investment Rate:  %
 
Owning
Planned # of years in home: 
Yearly appreciation of the home:  %
Annual home maintenance:  %

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