Some see buying a home as a fun and exciting adventure while others dislike the very thought of having to move. This is further aggravated if it’s a person’s first home and they’re not entirely sure what to look for – and this is especially true when they have arrived in a new country to them like Canada.
“You know, Susan was telling me that when she and her husband were looking to buy their first home, they had a laundry list of features they absolutely had to have in their home”, laughed Shalini. “Remember when we bought our first home? I do”, said Manoj. “We too, had a similar list. But our agent was quick to help us adapt to the housing market and separate what was truly important to us and what was truly wishful thinking. And you know, even though we made some compromises, now that we’ve been living in this home for almost a year now, the features that we didn’t get aren’t nearly as important anymore” said Manoj reminiscently.
And that is so true with many first time home Buyers. The excitement of buying their own home creates a wonderful euphoria that creates a fanciful image of their dream home, but then market realities quickly puts all that in check. In many ways, recent arrivals to Canada are first time home buyers even if they had previously bought a home in their native country because so many of the factors in buying a home are so very different from the styles, to the materials, to the layouts.
It’s a good idea to start with a wish list of everything that you would like to have in a home – and then attach a practical reason why it’s important to have that feature. This is great because it’s a starting point for discussion and gives your real estate agent a very good idea of what your ideal home would be and then your agent can go to task in finding it. And if she should encounter a challenge in finding suitable homes in your desired price range, then she can advise you of which features could be eliminated that would then bring more properties into view. Many times Buyers will be fixated with certain features that were important back home but in Canadian culture particularly in urban centres, it’s not important at all.
Do you have a question for Ed about housing in Canada? Submit your question through the below form or send an email to [email protected]
Edward Frezza, BSc, MBA is a real estate broker with Re/Max Professionals in Toronto. He started with commercial real estate in 1989, and since 2004 has focused on residential real estate in the Greater Toronto Area. His interest in multi-family rental real estate and new home construction led to creating his own real estate investment portfolio. His depth of knowledge and experience has him sought out by home buyers/sellers and investors alike. Edward is passionate about helping people achieve security for themselves and their family though home ownership. This passion has also led him to teaching real estate courses through the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) for the last 4 years.