Buying a House in London Ontario? How Sellers Price Their Homes

When buying a house in London Ontario, be aware that in real estate, there are 4 pricing strategies that have been used since Adam had to go out and look for a place of his own!

pricing a home in London Ontario

Clearly Overpriced:

Every seller wants to maximize the amount they receive . They may have an inflated value of what their home is worth because of: getting opinions from un-informed advisors and friends, having an over financed home, or they have renovated their home to a standard not consistent with their neighbours.

Somewhat Overpriced:

  About 75% of the homes on the market are overpriced. These homes sit on the market longer than they should as well. There are two main reasons these homes are overpriced. The seller believes that the home is worth more than the market has indicated, OR, the seller has left room for negotiating.

 Priced Correctly At Market Value: 

Some sellers understand that real estate is part of the capitalistic system of supply and demand. They have realistically priced their homes based on a thorough analysis of other homes on the market prepared by a good and knowledgeable Realtor. These competitively priced homes usually sell in a reasonable time and very close to asking price.

  Priced Below the Fair Market Value:

Some sellers are motivated by a quick sale. These homes could attract multiple offers and sell fast, and, at or above, the asking price!

As a buyer, do you know which strategy will be used?

Why?

Knowing how to get an offer accepted at a price you are pleased with is a skill that very few Realtors have. I hope I have raised your awareness of how prices are determined ,  quality representation can save you a lot of time and money.

Disappointed In Buying a London Ontario House?

There’s nothing worse than ordering a sparkling water and then taking a sip and it’s flat.

No bubbles, no life, no spark.

Can't find a house in London Ontario

It’s the same with buying a house or a condo in London Ontario. You’re pumped up and excited to get to it.

But then no listings (or so your Realtor told you).  You were outbid on one. You sit  there & never hear from your salesperson or you miss out on a property because you were a day late finding out about it.

You get deflated, pi*#ed off even upset.

How do you get that fizz back? How do you add some carbonation to your home search?

You knew this was coming so here it is, call me!

Don’t Forget These Extra Costs When Buying a London Ontario Home

    Don’t Forget These  Extra Costs When Buying a  London Ontario  Home

Buying a home in London Ontario will take much more money than just the purchase price of the property, and not the  things like moving costs, furniture, paint, rakes or shovels, blinds and all the thing most of us never even think about!

I’m talking about the actual costs of buying real estate, below are some costs, either hidden, or included in your mortgage or money that you will have to spend right away. Of the hundred’s of transactions we do, very few people even take these into consideration.

 Now, you can!

it takes more money buying a home

  Purchase Price
duhhhh! you say, of course, but this is just the starting point in your calculation.

  Registration Fees
Fees paid to the provincial government for recording a title transfer, mortgage registration or other instruments.

  High Ratio Insurance (CMHC)
Must be purchased if you are buying a home for less than 20% down. A sliding fee scale applies, depending on the percentage of the purchase price required in a first mortgage (some minor exceptions) which can be added to the mortgage. More information.

  Compliance Letter
Obtained by your lawyer and required in many municipalities throughout Canada before a property transfer can take place. This is an acknowledgment from the building department that the property either has, or is clear of outstanding work-orders. Work-orders are specific clean-up or fix-up requirements that the owner is legally required to do, and which must be completed before ownership can be transferred.

paperwork for buying a house London Ontario

  Tax Certificate
Obtained by your lawyer at the time of sale to confirm that local taxes have been paid and are up-to-date. If they are not up to date, the seller is required to pay them from the proceeds of the sale. If there are insufficient proceeds, then you may be legally required to pay the outstanding taxes. If, on the other hand, taxes have been prepaid, you may have to compensate the seller for them.

   Provincial “New Home Warranty Program” premiums — New Homes Only!
A third party (provincial) warranty program between a builder and a buyer. With the exception of Ontario and Quebec, membership in such a program is voluntary for the builder. Through these programs, your home is guaranteed against defects for at least one year.  See Tarion. 

   Mortgage Appraisal and Application Fees
Application feees &  appraisal fees are common. Generally $150 — $235 each would apply. (Be careful here, ask your lender what the fees are and if they can waive some or all of it)

  Home Inspection
A report commissioned by the buyer, usually to verify the condition of a property prior to the “firming up” of a purchase agreement. The scope and detail may vary, but most reports outline any particular problems and associated repair costs. Unfortunately, home inspectors in Ontario are not licsenced!

   Land Survey
The legal written and/or mapped description of the location and dimensions of your land. The survey should also show the dimensions and placement on the lot of any structure, including additions such as pools, sheds and fences. An up-to-date survey is often required by a lender as part of the mortgage transaction, although Title Insurance is more prevalent and is usually included in your lawyer’s fee.

  Title Insurance
Title insurance can be purchased by home buyers to protect against potential deficiencies in a number of areas, such as the land survey.  More about title insurance.

  Connection Charges
Some local utility companies (hydro, gas, oil) charge a fee on closing to connect new buyers up to their service. More common, however, is an extra charge on the first billing.

property taxes in London Ontario

  Property Tax and Prepaid Utilities Adjustments
If the previous owner prepaid property taxes or other utilities, they will be credited the prepaid portion on closing. If they paid all their taxes by April, expect a large adjustment cost on closing!

  Interest Adjustment 
If you arrange to make your mortgage payments monthly on the first day of the month, and your transaction closes after the first day of the month, your lender will charge you interest on closing to the next interest date, called the Interest Adjustment Date (IAD), when your payment cycle will commence. This can be a sizeable amount, but it is the correct interest you should pay. For example, close on June 15th, pay 15 days interest on closing and start payments on August 1st.

 Property Taxes

Depending on your down payment, your lending institution may decide to include your property taxes in your monthly mortgage payments.

Property Insurance

Home insurance covers the replacement value of your home (structure and contents). Your lending institution will request proof that you are insured as it protects their investment on the loan.

 Legal Fees

Shop around here; rates vary depending on the complexity issues or experience of the lawyer or the cost of their overhead and associates.

  Mortgage Loan Insurance Fee

In the event of disability or death, your insurer will pay your mortgage or mortgage payments. *** Be very careful here; compare rates with your lending institution and your life insurance sales person.

 Mortgage Broker Fee

Shop around; most lending institutions will pay the mortgage broker’s fee, not you. Ask up front, “Do I have to pay any fees by using your services?”

 Mortgages & Buying real estate London Ontario

 Moving Costs

$50-$100/hour for a truck and 3 movers, 10 –30% higher at end of month and other peak times

 Maintenance Fees

Condos charge monthly fees and vary depending on the building.

 Water Quality and Quality Certification

If the home you purchased is serviced by a well, you will require and should get regular water portability tests by your local heath unit.

 Local Improvements

If the area you are moving to has made local improvements (such as sidewalks or addition of sewers), this could impact a property’s taxes by thousands of dollars.

 Land Transfer Tax

This tax is applied whenever property changes hands and the amount varies on the purchase price of the property. Your lawyer or I can let you know what this amount will be. More info.

 Congratulations, you’ve read this far! Believe it or not, you are a minority and the type of person we like to work with, thorough, willing to learn, careful and prudent!

As you can see, there are extra costs to consider before you make that purchase. By working with a very good Realtor, you will be aware of these and some you may prevent.

We use a spread sheet that we developed that comes pretty close to giving you an idea of how much extra you may need when buying a home in London.

Do not stress yourself out! Be prepared! Let us organize your steps towards getting the house you want!

Contact us- Sutton Group Envelope Real Estate

Buy a London Ontario Home And Get Protection

When you buy a London Ontario home, in all our offers, we put in a clause that allows us to view the property 1 or 2 times before closing. The reason is, for me as a Realtor, is to ensure there are no damages, that appliances are the same or the sellers did not leave any junk behind.

Get Results, use a Good Realtor

About 90% of the time( over 100’s of transactions) all is fine, but in some cases, you would be shocked. When we find out the home is not in the same condition when we bought it, or the place is filthy or appliances were switched, we contact your lawyer immediately.

Of course, we also contact the seller’s Realtor as well and in most cases, they too are not happy with the condition of the home and say they will contact their client and see if we can remedy the problems.

The main reason I do our final walk through 1-3 days before closing is that when a problem arises, we can suggest your lawyer not close the transaction, or, hold back $5000 to $10,000 until the seller remedies the problems.

You would be surprised how quick problems get solved when there is a holdback!

As a Realtor, my responsibility goes much further than helping you find and purchase a home, it is the behind the scenes work, skills and ownership we take that allows me to state ; “Not All Realtors Are The Same!”

Frustrated Looking For Homes For Sale London Ontario

Are you spending countless hours searching the MLS, real estate magazines, weekend classified ads and real estate websites looking for the ideal home for a great price and in a great neighbourhood in London Ontario?

Searching to buy a home in London Ontario

 

If you enjoy doing that, great. Are you aware you may be missing out on some great homes that sell in a day or two or a home that was priced quite so agressively that it sells as soon as it comes on the market or on a specific street?

Do you think you will get a head jump on others by searching daily or weekly? Avoid paying commissions? Avoid a pesky or bothersome real estate person (don’t blame you)?

Or, perhaps you are curious or you are in the ‘just thinking stage’ of real estate. Perhaps to purchase or sell.

Regardless, real estate changes, people change, neighbourhoods change, real estate markets change and the motivation of buyers and sellers change.

So how do I, as a real estate professional, as a Broker of Record and Owner keep you, the curious, the maybe, the must have by the end of the month, the retiree, the downsizer, the upsizer, the DINK’s (double incomes,no kids), the tire kicker, deal maker, bread winner or just plain ready to move informed about real estate in London Ontario?

My asociates and I view a lot of houses and condos every week. We do loads of searches daily for clients, we are constantly researching properties, even For Sale By Owners.

we find houses in London Ontario

 

As professional house hunters in London we know the jungle (the bushes in London), the alleys, the streets, avenues, crescents  and can guide you on the right path to ensure your purchase is wise & financially sensible.

You won’t have to jump off any cliffs, scale any mountains, wrestle a crocodile, put up with a pushy real estate salesperson, cross-eyed lawyers, impotent mortgage lenders, near sighted home inspectors, all you have to do is put up with us!

Ty Lacroix

  These folks did and they are still with us!

How To Have The Advantage When Buying a Home in London Ontario

If thinking or you are buying a home in London Ontario, did you know  that in some of the top neighbourhoods in London Ontario, some homes are selling in a day or two , (for asking price or even 10-18% more) and in some cases, the seller has jacked up the price to try to take advantage of this seller’s market?

Buying a house London Ontario

   Here are some very,very important questions you may want answered before you make a decision before buying a home in London Ontario.

  • What is the property really worth in today’s market?
  • What is the property worth in a normal market?
  • Will it be worth what you paid 5 years from now? (Don’t guess on this one or apply uninformed confidence that it will)
  • How flexible is the seller on closing date?
  • Will there be multiple offers?
  • If there are multiple offers and I have to go in with no conditions, what’s wrong  or could be with the property? (extremely important)

 All Houses & Condos For Sale on MLS            Search MLS London Ontario

Condos for sale on MLS in London OntarioAll Houses For Sale on MLS London Ontario & Area Houses With a Pool London Ontario

London Ontario Neighbourhoods       Communities Around London Ontario

Downsizing or Rightsizing London Ontario                     Income Properties London Ontario

Did you know you may NOT be seeing all homes for sale with the email notifications from the various home search websites you are registered with? We have access to properties for sale that are not listed for sale on MLS. (Home owners have asked us to help them sell, but there’s a few days lag time before they are searchable on MLS or they are doing a few bits of tidying up.

How about  a process that puts you in the driver’s seat? We like to take the time (which will save you many hours later and frustration)  to understand your individual needs by creating a personalised “property profile”.  We have an extensive network of contacts that clients have said have saved them  days and even weeks of searching.

Our contacts open doors .

Sutton Group Envelope Real Estate Opens Doors

Buying a home in London Ontario and area is usually the most expensive purchase you will make in your life and it’s not something you do every day of the week (unless you are like myself & our partners, we do it everyday, 7 days a week!).

Our past clients have found that our inovative Dedicated Buyer Program provides them with an objective and unbiased view of the property’s true worth and helps remove the emotion from the buying process. This coupled with expert negotiation skills allows our clients  to save thousands of dollars and in mostcases, quite a few problems. Remember:

  Price is what you pay, value is what you get” Warren Buffet

Again, when you engage in our Dedicated Home Buyer Program, we take the time up front to understand your needs, reviewing your criteria and designing a strategy to meet your goals. We then , ( at no cost to you, we only get renumerated AFTER you have successfully taken possession of your home) undertake an extensive research to match your purchasing criteria with properties for sale. We even have have access to many properties that may never appear on the open market (sometimes called “exclusive listings” or “pocket listings”).

Our full search service includes:

  • Initial consultation to listen to your wants, dislikes, must have’s and would like to have
  • Unprecedented  market research tools that most other companies have never even heard about.
  • Discretion, confidentiality and our work ethic.
  • Access to our support services such as  legal, home inspection, movers, trades people, property management etc.
  • We are never too busy because when you work with us as a buyer, not only will you have a professional experienced Realtor to help you ( extensive training and work ethics), we have a closing coordinator, three office administrators, an inside sales associate and a marketing specialist.
  • We all follow this great quote from Jack Bergman:  There never is enough time to do it right, but there is always enough time to do it over!”
  • Why not check us out?

Forgetting Anything When Buying a London Ontario Home?

Is there anything you are forgetting when buying a  London Ontario Home?

Buying a home, things to think about

I know that when I meet buyers for the first time, be it first time buyers or 5th time buyers and we go through a checklist of the buying process, I hear this statement all the time; “You know, I never  thought of that!”

  • How much exactly have you been preapproved 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 of the stories I hear where that low fee did not turn out to be low! Yes, the fee was low, 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 you are committed to that Realtor.  In most cases you don’t and won’t mind being committed, but what if your relationship is not working out!?Be very 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?. A few tips.

Those 4 are the more common misunderstood steps in the buying process  that home buyers have, and, the most expensive!

 Buying a home is the easy part, it is the lack of details, lack of information or the lack of experienced professionals to help you that will make you toss and turn at night.

Buying a House in London Ontario? New or Re-Sale?

Over the years, we have found that one of the most common questions we are asked is about the advantages and disadvantages of buying a brand-new home. The answer is that there is really no way to generalize; each case requires its own assessment!

New Home or an Older One?

A lot of specific research and fact finding should be done before you contemplate purchasing a newly constructed home. It is easy to assume that the home will be well constructed with quality materials and workmanship, but that is not always the case.

London Ontario & area has some fine quality builders with stellar reputations, but when dealing with sub trades and being human, some make human errors.

Our many years of experience in new homes has given us the skills to know exactly what to look for in a new home, the right questions to ask and also, who to direct them to! Not only that, we can help you make the calculations that will be important to your final decision.

save with Envelope Real Estate

Who is protecting you when you buy through a sales office or a  model show house! The builder has either  a professional real estate representative watching out for their interests or their own salaried/commission sales person representing the builder  and you need and deserve the your own separtae expert representation watching out for your interests.

Lawyers are not allowed to represent both parties in a real estate transaction, buildes can and real estate sales people in Ontario can!

Before you make that big decision on buying a home in London Ontario, why not get together with us & discuss the pros and cons and then decide how to next proceed to protect you and save you some money!

There is no fee for this, you are under no obligation and I guarantee you will learn a few facts as well!

What You Think You Know May Hurt Buying London Ontario Real Estate

Buying London Ontario real estate is not as simple as  shopping for a house or condo to buy, because there are actually two homes competing for your attention: the one that meets your needs, and the one that fulfills your desires.

looking to buy a house or a condo in London Ontario

In one of the greatest financial books ever written, ‘The Richest Man in Babylon’,George Clason writes that there are two kinds of knowledge: the one kind being the things we learned and knew, and the other being the training that taught us how to find out what we did not know.

I read this book yearly to refresh and remind myself of some real simple financial basics, and while very simple and easy to do, most do not follow, perhaps because it is so simple & easy!

When it comes to buying a house or a condo in London Ontario, I see many people , professionals especially, while well educated in their profession (I hope), buy or sell real estate without finding out what they do not know.

It is like a person complaining of a sore belly, goes to their doctor and tells the physician that Dr. Google says it is blah blah blah! The kind physician ( the one not rolling their eyes or thinking “Oh no,here we go again) will ask questions, identify the cause or the remedy and treat the problem.

In real estate the same thing, wise, intelligent people listen to what their neighbour or co-worker say, read “how to save thousands when buying real estate’, or watch all those reality shows and then become experts in buying a house or a condo.

Home sellers and their real estate representative love you, because you are the one who overpays for a home (yet brag that you got a good deal, yadayadayaa) or find out that the home has structural issues or a neighbourhood stigma .

Getting back to The Richest Man in Babylon, why not let your ego sit down for awhile and find out what you do not know about buying or selling a home? In real estate we do not have a Dr. Google, but we have everyone who has ever bought or sold a home as experts on how to buy or sell a home.

If I offended anyone by being blunt with the last paragraph, hopefully I have at least brought more awareness that perhaps you do not have all the answers and that a professional Realtor may be your greatest asset.

You may think money dictates your decision and in some cases you may be right. But about 85% of the time, you would be surprised at the results you can get when working with a professional real estate agent in London Ontario and these tools in the tool kit below.

Envelope real Estate Buyers Toolkit

 

 

 

3 Do Not Do’s When Buying a London Ontario House

I intended  to name this blog  ‘house buyer oh no’s’  when buying a house in London Ontario, but these issues were not directly caused by the buyers

.Three Buying a House in London Ontario Buyer errors

1. We listed a client’s house and received and accepted an offer on it in two days. Financing and home inspection were fine but when the Buyer’s lawyer searched the title, it was discovered the builder and the City did not sign off on the final inspection and there was still an outstanding work permit.

​   My seller client called her lawyer who did her home purchase 9 years ago and his reply? “Not my fault!” Really! Yes, he blamed the City and her and would not take responsibility and blah, blah this and that.

My client and I contacted the City and after many run arounds, got everything settled. This is not unusual, I have seen it happen many times so that is why, we, the so called lowly unwashed Realtor, research the city for any outstanding work orders or efficiencies before we list a house and not depend on the lawyer to do so.

2. We sold our clients house in a newer neighbourhood, they had lived in it for two years and wanted to move to Old North London. When the buyer’s home inspector found two serious issues with the home, the new buyers wanted a price reduction. My seller client’s had a home inspection when they had bought the home and the two deficiencies were not exposed or found.

I asked the sellers who their home inspector was and how they chose him and he was gave the lowest quote over the phone. Did they ask for references? Did they ask for experience etc.?

No, they did not. Upon cooperation with the new buyers and my seller client, we worked out a compromise to the deficiencies, my seller paid for the correction and the sale went through, but at a cost to them of $3300!

Buyers remorse is not necessary, work with Sutton Group Envelope

The 3rd example is real common and very sad. I was asked to come and list a house that these folks had bought 5 years ago. When I suggested the house price to them, they said “But, that is the price we paid 5 years ago!”Well, I explained to them that they paid $21,000 too much for it when they bought it!

You can imagine what they said to me.  They decided to go with another Realtor. At this writing, 5 months later, after two other Realtors, they have gone to a 3rd Realtor and still trying to sell!

How sad because these sellers were very nice and hadn’t taken the time to pick the best Realtor for them when they bought the house in the first place. Oh, by the way, the Realtor they bought the house with is no longer in business! Wonder why?

So in summary, the above 3 errors are more common than not and as a professional Realtor, I find it callous and unnecessary.

​    7 Wonderful Home Buyer Tips