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

How To Prevent Overpaying For a London Ontario House

Overpaying for real estate in London Ontario over the past few months is occurring more often than not and I have heard the following statements from buyers and Realtors.

happy buyers


  • “There is nothing I can do about it”.
  • “That’s just the way the real estate market is right now.”
  • “There is nothing else out there”


Learned helplessness is a condition in which a buyer adapts to the scarcity mindset, the fear of loss and instant gratification and overpays for a house in London Ontario and feel that there is nothing they can do about it and that the acceptance of their offer is totally out of their control.

Yes, the real estate market in London Ontario is vibrant and as a Realtor, that is quite positive yet the consequences of overzealous buyers and their representatives actions will have a negative effect , as history has proven over and over that the axiom “What goes up must come down”, holds true.

As a home buyer in London Ontario, you have choices and there are strategies you can take to ensure you do not over pay and get caught up in the frenzy.

 You cannot ever overpay with the research and the facts we provide to our clients!

Finding a Home To Buy In London Ontario Should Not Be a Puzzle

  Finding a Home in London Ontario Should Not Be A Puzzle!

If I brought you in a room and in a pile on a table in that room was a 1200 piece jigsaw puzzle with no picture of the completed puzzle on the box and then asked you to put it together, where would you start?

Thinking about buying a house in Uplands

I am sure eventually you would be able to put it together over lots of time and lots of trial and error and some frustration! But why go through the hassle if all you needed was the picture?

Well, buying a house or condo in London Ontario is no different!

If you had a picture in your mind of exactly what you wanted and needed in a house, do you not think that the buying process would be easier and in the long run, save you money?

Here is a scenario that is frequently a request that we receive:

   “We are looking for a house in __________________________ 3-4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, garage and between $____, 000 and $___, 000.”

  “We would like a master ensuite, fenced back yard etc.”

      A puzzle to Buy a Home                          


Yes, you may have decided on a one floor home versus a two story, maybe even a neighbourhood or close to a particular school or your work.

Over the years what our clients have really appreciated is what we call a market education.

We sit down with our clients and take the time to narrow down your must have’s, your lifestyle preferences, your budget, your comfort zone and after that we are getting close to having a picture of your needs.

We then go look at 4-5 homes with the intent of not buying any of them! We are solely getting a clearer picture of what you would really like and can afford in a home. After this 2-3 hour tour and analysis, we have found that  90% of the time, our buyers have a clear picture and now can act on the home that matches their picture!

Our clients know comparative prices; know the right neighbourhood, the right style of home and the necessary amenities that match their lifestyle.

I will agree that this process may not be for everyone but over the years it sure works for our clients and their level of satisfaction is very pleasing to us and a barometer of our values and work ethic!

In 90% of cases, a real estate sales person’s role is not to be a home finder. That was what real estate people did in the 80’s & 90’s, consumers  did not have access to  the vast amount of information that is available today.

Home Buyers in London

A good real estate person’s advantage and skill is to be an interpreter of data, a consultant, an advisor, a professional negotiator who ensures that not only is the price right, but the terms and conditions of a complex transaction are well managed from start to finish.

Eliminate Fear When Buying a London Ontario House

Most house buyers have many fears when getting ready to buy a home, whether it is the first time buyer or a couple who have bought and sold 5 homes in their lifetime.

fear of buying a home

Most of those fears are normal and that is a good thing. However:

F false

 E evidence

 A appearing 

 R real

I have worked with hundreds of home buyers over the years and I have found that most of their fears were of the unknown or worst of all, here say by family, friends and co-workers. My role as a professional Realtor is to address those fears, acknowledge them and then overcome those fears with factual information, not my perceptions but the real world of real estate reality.

The fear of buying the wrong house, over-paying for it, defects, financing and location can in 99% of the time, can be overcome with due diligence.

The fear of being happy in that home, entertaining and appreciating in value is internal and way above my paygrade to offer advice!

In the end, common sense, being practical and keeping your emotions in check will be your best friends.

Downsizing to London Ontario? What Next?

  “We’re thinking about downsizing to a smaller home in London Ontario. Having been out of the real estate market for many years, how do we find the right place and someone to walk us through the steps?”

Finding A Great Realtor in London Ontario

When it comes to buying or selling a home in London Ontario, one of the first steps many people take is choosing a real estate professional to work with. Much like you’ll be searching for a home to meet your needs, you’ll want to take a few steps to choose the real estate professional who is right for you.

Regardless of how you find the real estate professional, it’s always a good idea to meet with at least a few different representatives before selecting the one you’d like to work with. When you have your short list and are ready to meet with a few candidates, consider asking these questions:

1. What is your experience? Experience is about more than how many years someone has been in business. Take the time to learn about the types of properties they typically work with, which neighbourhoods they work in and how many homes in the type you are looking for they helped buy or sell in the past year or two.

2. What is your approach to the buying or selling process?For the buying side of things, how will the representative search for suitable properties and what is their approach to negotiations? When selling, how will your home be marketed to help attract the right prospective buyers? By understanding their approach, you’ll know what to expect and will be able to determine which representative’s philosophy and methods align with your preferences.

3. What services will be included? Discuss your particular needs and expectations with prospective representatives to ensure they are able to provide the services you want. For example, when selling, will the representative have professional photos taken of your home or prepare multimedia promotional materials? How will they promote and market your home? Understanding exactly what services will be provided, and later documenting them in your written contract, will help avoid misunderstandings later on.

4. What are the commissions or fees that I will need to pay? Commissions and fees can vary between brokerages and the services provided, so be sure to understand what will be provided and what it will cost. Keep in mind that, as with most things, you pay for what you get.

5. Do you have references? As with most job interviews, getting in touch with references is an important step before hiring someone. Speaking with past clients is a great way to learn more. Were past clients pleased with their experience? Was the representative responsive and easy to get in touch with? Would they recommend them to others?

Buying and selling a home is a major decision, so it’s key to take the time to find the right representative for you. Whether it’s homes within a certain price range, in a specific neighbourhood, income properties or condos, it’s smart to find a representative experienced in buying and selling your kind of place.

 Ask these 11 Questions Before You Hire Any Realtor

Do Not Overpay When Buying a Home in London Ontario

Overpaying when buying a home in London Ontario over the past few months is occurring more often than not and I have heard the following statements from buyers and Realtors.

happy buyers


  • “There is nothing I can do about it”.
  • “That’s just the way the real estate market is right now.”


Learned helplessness is a condition in which a buyer adapts to the scarcity mindset, the fear of loss and instant gratification and overpays for a house in London Ontario and feel that there is nothing they can do about it and that the acceptance of their offer is totally out of their control.

Yes, the real estate market in London Ontario is vibrant and as a Realtor, that is quite positive yet the consequences of overzealous buyers and their representatives actions will have a negative effect , as history has proven over and over that the axiom “What goes up must come down”, holds true.

As a home buyer in London Ontario, you have choices and there are strategies you can take to ensure you do not over pay and get caught up in the frenzy.

If you never ever want to overpay for real estate, I will not let you!