Fast Forward to 2010 & First Time Home Buyers (In Canada)
by Geraldine Santiago, Author and Realtor
First time Home Buyer Expert, www.vancouverhomes.info and www.vancouverfirsttimehomebuyer.ca
Fast forward to 2010, and first time home buyers have it GREAT. Buyers today are actually better informed and equipped with knowledge thanks to the internet, ebooks, consumer’s advocacy groups than yesteryear when I purchased my very first home.
Back then, there were no zero per cent down so it was difficult for first time home buyers to get pre-approved for a mortgage as easily as today. In addition, mortgage application forms are made easy today for the consumers. One can get a pre-approval on-line, with a computer and mouse! I remember when my husband and I went to the banks and it felt like they were pulling teeth--it was difficult for the banks to give us a home loan as we were new to the work force, and fresh out of University. Actually, we were still in University.
In addition, today there are buyer’s agents who represent the buyers and listing agents who represent the sellers. At that time when we purchased, there was no clear definition or designation. Now, I understand that in a year’s time, they will no longer have dual agency but DESIGNATED agency so that each party is best represented by their own agent. That means for REALTORS and agents, there will be no double ending the deal.
Today, the MLS listings are posted on-line, through the Real Estate Board. Before, we had to go through an agent and they were the ones who carried around this huge listings books as thick as the yellow pages and they would not lend it to buyers as it was too costly.
REALTORS today encourage that consumers hire the services of a certified home inspector so that consumers can determine for themselves the health of the home. Back then, it was not common to do so, and oftentimes, if one had a relative who was a plumber or electrician, they would “inspect’ the property with their limited capacity as a plumber or electrician.
So many things have changed from way back when I purchased my home, (as well as the price). Consumers can feel comfortable that they have the tools to get empowered. This is why I wrote my book, the “Complete Home Buyer’s Guide for Canadians” because it has everything you need to know about purchasing today and why you should take the time to borrow it from your local library, your bookstore or friend!
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