Buying Foreclosures in Edmonton, Alberta

What Is A Foreclosure?

A foreclosure or foreclosed home is when someone who borrowed money secured by a mortgage on a property stops paying and the lender wants to realize their security. Essentially the lender applies to the court for an order transferring the security (the property) into the name of the lender. The lender may then sell the property to pay back the loan.

What Is A Judicial Sale?

People frequently refer to a judicial sale as a foreclosure. There is a key difference. With a judicial sale, the court sells the property. The proceeds of the sale pay off the loan or as much of it as possible. The court also attempts to sell the property as close to fair market value as possible. The title to the property never transfers to the bank or financial lender. In a judicial sale, the borrower, usually the homeowner, retains a right of redemption. This means that they have the opportunity to bring the mortgage current and keep the house.

How to Buy a Foreclosure

Foreclosed properties, like the vast majority of Edmonton homes for sale in our province, are listed on the Edmonton MLS board. When the listing comes on the market, we will see it – and so will you, if you have signed up with us to receive new listings. Every foreclosure, estate sale or bank-owned property, will be a little bit different when putting in an offer. Depending on the rules and regulations set forth by the lender, the court or the executor. Some foreclosures in Edmonton mush be cash unconditional offers, while others are treated the same as any other property.

Pros and Cons of Buying Foreclosures

Foreclosure and Judicial sales of Canada homes are more common in the United States. However, if you have been living in Alberta for a while, you will be well aware of our surplus of Edmonton foreclosures from the crash of our economy in 2007. It is now 2020 and Alberta house prices have not changed since. Before you start looking into buying a foreclosed home, it’s important to understand the inherent benefits and risks involved.

Pros:

  • The lender, eager to recuperate their loss, will want to sell the property quickly and is usually priced below its true market value. If you buy a foreclosed house, it is sometimes possible to get an even lower price. Any liens, backdated taxes, or outstanding mortgage payments remaining on the property will be expunged, as these factors would make it harder for the lender to resell the home. At the time of closing, your real estate lawyer will make sure your title is free and clear of all encumbrances.

Cons:

  • While foreclosed properties can be cheaper, they are not rock-bottom prices, as you might have heard. More often than not, you would acquire the home at only a slightly cheaper price than it was initially unless you have done your homework. Knowing the absorption rate and having your Realtor complete a buyer's comparative market analysis for you will help determine whether or not you have made a great investment.
  • The legal and financial procedures for buying a foreclosed home are more strict and complicated than the average home sale. Although your real estate lawyer will make sure your title is clear at the time of closing, it is a good idea to double-check your property title a few months after you move into your home. Not all of the old sellers' creditors know the house foreclosed.
  • Foreclosed homes are sold in a “what you see, is what you get” state, meaning you’ll have to cover all repairs or renovations by yourself. You’ll also have to get rid of any possessions that may have been left behind. This means if a stove was in the property when you last viewed it and now, it is gone, there is really nothing that can be done.
  • The terms of the mortgage contract may absolve the lender from any of these responsibilities, as well as any future liability for the property. If there are a foundation, hydroelectricity, or zoning problems, they are your responsibility. No warranties will be offered. It is a good idea to have a property inspection on a foreclosure prior to making an offer.

Hire an Experienced Realtor

Since buying a foreclosed home is more complex, having a professional realtor will be more necessary than ever. Not only can they help you find the right property, but they’ll also facilitate and guide you through the whole process. There are a lot of different steps you’ll need to go through, including inspection and a court date.

Tips on moving into a foreclosure

  • Consider the significant costs involved with buying a foreclosure home. Remember, a foreclosed property might need some work before it’s safe to live in. If you can’t afford these costs (as well as your payments), hold off until you can find a more suitable property. Consider the expenses that don’t even relate to the initial price, such as:
  • Utilities that need to be switched on as soon as possible - make sure you have ownership documentation. The previous owners may have outstanding utilities and you don't want to pay for them.
  • Change the locks. The sellers will not be happy they have lost their home to foreclosure, or the bank may have had tenants living there for a while.
  • Plan on doing a bit of landscaping. The grass may not have been cut for months and there could be doggie bombs in the yard.

Common Questions About Buying an Edmonton Foreclosure

#1. Can I get a mortgage on a foreclosed home?

  • Yes, you can. In most cases, purchasing a foreclosed home is an investment rather than a first home, so chances are you already have a pre-existing mortgage. If you don’t, contact us and we will help you through the process of getting a mortgage with one of our lenders so you can start searching for your first investment property.

#2. What is the risk of buying a foreclosed home?

  • Just like any type of real estate investment, buying a foreclosed home does come with a certain amount of risk. Being educated about the most common mistakes that buyers make when purchasing a distressed home will help you navigate the sometimes tricky world of foreclosure sales.
  • Don’t offer too low of a starting price. If you offer too low a price you will be rejected before ever getting to the auction stage of the foreclosure process. To avoid this common mistake, work hard with your Realtor to offer a realistic initial amount.
  • Never assume that your offer will be the only offer. You may need to adjust your original price if you want to pursue that bank-owned property.
  • Be prepared to lose in court. You may be outbid and end up losing your foreclosure sale at the very last minute.
  • Be prepared for some of the major risks. These include not receiving the home in the same condition as when you first viewed it. Another risk is that tenants still occupy the property when you take possession and may have to be forcibly removed.

#3 Do foreclosures get price reductions?

  • The longer a foreclosure sits on the market, the less money the bank is willing to take for that specific property, so sometimes patience is the key to saving large sums of money! Depending on the circumstances, the general rule is that the asking price will be adjusted once every 30 days to help generate interest in the property. Some foreclosed homes have sat vacant for months and even years.
  • The longer a foreclosure sits on the market, the less money the bank is willing to take for that specific property, so sometimes patience is the key to saving large sums of money! Depending on the circumstances, the general rule is that the asking price will be adjusted once every 30 days to help generate interest in the property. Some foreclosed homes have sat vacant for months and even years.

#4 How long does it take for a response, once I have written an offer?

  • In Alberta, the Real Estate Act favours settling foreclosures via a judicial sale, where a lender can only accept an offer to buy a property in foreclosure by going to court. The process can take days to several weeks, meaning other interested buyers can also write an offer after you have already submitted yours.

#5 Is a foreclosed home a good investment?

  • A foreclosed home can be a great real estate investment if you understand all of the costs associated with the project. A general guideline is that you should never pay more than 80% of the property’s estimated market value including any needed repairs.

Edmonton Foreclosure Summary

If done right, a foreclosed home can be a wise real estate investment that can provide you with an excellent rate of return.  Remember that every foreclosure sale is an “as is” sale, meaning: what you see on completion date is what you get. All of this information will be presented to you in a Schedule A form, make sure to go over it and understand it with your Realtor!


Our team of real estate and lawyers help when people buy foreclosures in Edmonton and the surrounding area. We help explain the risks of buying a foreclosure. We also explain how to mitigate that risk. Always seek this information and advice before signing any contract to purchase such property in Alberta. Connect today! Email your questions here directly. Also, feel free to call us at 780-910-5179.

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YES! Edmonton properties are still being sold! While the real estate market has slowed down, people are still buying and selling homes in Edmonton.

Buying & Selling in Edmonton during COVID-19



Tips for Buying During COVID-19

1. Check out virtual Open Houses

If you were planning on visiting an open house during this pandemic - sorry not allowed. There are however online virtual tours you can take advantage of. We know its not quite the same, so if you really want to view a property, contact us and we will ensure all precautions are in place while viewing.

2. It's a Blessing in Disguise

Timing is everything when it comes to money, this is a perfect time to be purchasing any real estate from single-family homes to rental investments to leasing commercial property. There are some sellers who need to sell their houses and are willing to take a loss. Plus interest rates right now in Canada are unbeatable. 


Tips for Selling Edmonton During COVID-19

1. Don't Rely on Virtual Evaluations

Pricing is everything right now. An experienced Realtor will still need to see your home in person to price it properly in today's market. Although the agent's presentation can be done via skype, on the phone and through email documentation, an accurate selling price can only be provided when the agent physical looks at your property. Once they have viewed your home, then the agent can provide professional advice for maximizing your sold price and tips on preparing your home for sale to ensure you receive a fair market sold price!

2. Pictures are worth a thousand dollars

Today, more than ever, having the right photography is so important. Our professional photographers respect the COVID- 19 rules and all have masks and gloves while photographing, creating floor plans, 3D tours, i-guides, and accurately measuring your home. Our agents will be there as well at this time to ensure all precautions are taken. Expect to leave your house for about an hour and a half while the photos are being taken.

3. Only Allow in the Qualified

As a homeowner, you need to decide which viewing requirements you prefer. Do you require the buyers to complete a questionnaire prior to viewing? Are the Buyers qualified to purchase in your price range? Will everyone with a financial investment be there together for the viewing? Will the buyer's children be staying at home?

4. Do your part (Before & After the showing)

- Turn on all lights to prevent anyone from touching the light switches.
- Open all window coverings to provide natural light.
- Provide hand sanitizer at the front entry
- Sanitize door handles and surfaces before and after showings


If you have questions about selling your Edmonton home during COVID-19, feel free to get in touch with us.

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How to Hire a Great Edmonton Realtor when Selling

Be cautious with any REALTORS who charge upfront fees! Most Real Estate Companies DO NOT charge up-front fees. All expense will be paid by your Realtor from their own pocket. Once your home is SOLD, the Realtor will receive the remuneration you have agreed upon in your listing agreement. In the event your home does not sell during the term of the agreement - unless otherwise written - there is NO CHARGE.


There are almost 4000 licensed REALTORS® to choose from to help you sell your Edmonton home. When a municipality is a hot market, anyone can sell a property, but great real estate agents are able to sell in any market.& In a soft market or "buyers market", it is crucial to choose a REALTOR® who knows how to sell houses or you can become an expired statistic. Currently (2018) in Edmonton about 40% of homes are selling.


There are a few questions to ask a listing real estate agent prior to having them in your home, which will eliminate inexperienced agents and save you time and money. When REALTORS® are on a "Listing Appointment", the intention of the agent is to get you to sign the agreement to put your home on the market. After an agent has completed their marketing plan, strong agents will ask for the business. A weaker agent will not.


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The three biggest mistakes sellers make when selecting an agent is basing their decision solely on commission, price and the ability to market your home.

>Lowest real estate commissions:

Agents in Edmonton have business expenses, which can run into the thousands every month. Part of these expenses is the cost to market your home. If an agent is listing your home for a lesser commission, don't expect them to pay money they don't have to market your property. A good agent will not ask for any money upfront. Why would you pay someone for a job which has not been done? There is always a reason why a broker or real estate agent would discount a real estate fee. Ask yourself why. Is the agent desperate for business or unqualified? Do you want to work with a desperate agent?

Highest Asking Price:

In the real estate industry, there is a term, called "Buying the Listing". This means, an agent has told you, your home is worth more than it really is, just to get you to sign the listing agreement. Expect to reduce or price once or twice during the agreement or worse, be added to the Expired list (Homes which do not sell). REALTORS® already have an idea of what your home is worth, even before stepping into your home. Beware of an agent who is trying to buy the listing.

Ability to Market Properties:

Today, almost every buyer and seller start the home buying and selling process online. You may want to use "Mom and Dads REALTOR®, but are they tech-savvy? There is so much more to marketing a home than putting it on Realtor.ca. Anyone with a real estate license in Alberta can do this, you don't even need to live in Edmonton. Finding a qualified buyer who is ready, willing and able to purchase your home is more valuable to you than generating leads.


If your home is not exposed on the internet, by a tech-savvy Agent, buyers will not find it. Online advertising and property websites are now a basic requirement in modern home buying and selling. REALTOR®’s success also depends on how well they can market homes. Google the agents' website, prior to inviting them into your home. Find out how many listings the agent is carrying. If the Real Estate Agent only has one or two listings, they may be part-time, maybe more comfortable working with buyers or may not know how to market your home. An agent who is carrying too many listings can be overwhelmed and you may end up becoming a number instead of a client. A good rule of thumb is, hire an agent who carries 10 - 20 listings at a time, this is usually an indication of an above-average real estate agent.


The bare minimum marketing you should expect from your agent is:

  • Professional yard signage.
  • Lockbox with electronic monitoring
  • Follow-up reports on buyer showings with feedback to the seller
  • Staging advice to make your home more attractive to potential buyers.
  • Digital targeted marketing.
  • MLS exposure with a minimum of 30 professional photographs
  • Virtual tour.
  • Distribution to major websites.
  • Updated CMAs after 30 days including the recent sales
  • The ability to track online buyers

During the listing appointment, there are a few things that need to be noted.

How long was the agent in your home: Eliminate agents who view your home and arrive at a "listing price" within a short period of time. Although their price may be accurate, they haven't taken the time to show you how they arrived at the price or what they do and how they get homes sold. A good listing agent will show you comparable sales, pending sales, actives, educate you on the current market and show you their marketing plan. If the agent has no statistics, home sales are located in a different community or are not prepared, could be a red flag.

A great Edmonton Real Estate Agent will have spent time prior to meeting you, completing research on your home. They will have all the necessary information to price your home accurately. (highest possible asking price to attract reasonable offers) The agent will be prepared for anything including objections or concerns you may have. They will take the time to complete an accurate CMA, community absorption rate, thoroughly go over their marketing plan and address any unforeseen concerns they may have prior to asking for the listing. This is a valuable asset to the hiring experience.


Were all of your concerns addressed: Pay close attention as the REALTORS® goes through their marketing plan. Many of your concerns will already be addressed by a good agent. Pay attention to what is said. If it is mostly about how many homes they personally sold and how quickly, expect them to suggest a lower selling price below the true market value. These agents want to get your home sold as quickly as possible and move on. If the agent has not addressed most of your concerns. This can be a red flag.


Hire a professional: A huge misconception is every agent deals with the same type of buyers and sellers. In fact, there are agents who only list and agents who only deal with buyers. Not all agents work all price ranges. In Edmonton, there are real estate agents who specialize in mobile parks. They know how important it is to have the "criminal check" completed prior to writing an offer. An agent who specializes in luxury homes should have the extra knowledge required for selling a home under a company name, know the differences between the brands and grades of hardwood. If you are relocating, a relocation specialist is the best. They have contacts with other relocation REALTORS® who they have already done business with and can recommend a great agent for you at your destination which will make for a smoother move.

Go with your instinct: Selling a home is a major decision. You need to like, trust and feel comfortable with the REALTOR® you choose. Personality and character traits are also extremely important but don't show on paper. Buying and selling homes in a soft market, can take time and choose the right agent will be a positive experience. Choosing the wrong agent can lead to months of frustration and an unsold house.


Contact us today for your FREE HOME EVALUATION

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Choose Wisely - Choose REMAX!

It does not matter which company you choose to represent you on the purchase of your new home. A brand new inexperienced REALTOR in Edmonton gets paid the same as a veteran REALTOR with twenty years of experience, expertise and knowledge. This is at no cost to a buyer!


Below is helpful information when purchasing your new home. If you have any question, feel free to contact us! We love to help buyers and sellers! Sign up today to save time house hunting online. We can send it to you automatically.




You can choose to buy a home without a real estate agent, dealing directly with listing agents, or for sale by owners. There are several reasons to work with a licensed Realtor in the province of Alberta including.

  • The representative real estate agent Fiduciary Duties
  • A buyer does not pay commissions. Edmonton Real Estate Agent fees are normally paid for through the sellers' lawyer when under an exclusive Buyers Brokerage Agreement
  • Real estate agents will ensure you are getting fair market value and not overpaying through several REALTOR® tools including a "Buyers Comparative Market Analysis"
  • Property Titles are pulled to ensure the legitimacy of owners and to determine if dower is applicable, there are no special assessments, lis pendens, creditors, liens and other concerns which could complicate or delay closings.
  • Address any concerns or issues with your real property report including any setbacks, easements, restrictions, and compliance with the city.
  • Depending on a real estate agent experience and their designations will be a factor in the service you receive which should be outlined in your first meeting. Feel free to ask your real estate agent plenty of questions.
  • Your Realtor can set you up on an auto-prospecting system which will enable you to view new homes within your personal search criteria within an hour of the property hitting the market.
  • Read More on "How to purchase a home"

Make your expectations known: If you expect your real estate agent to pick you up at your front door and drive you home after showing homes, tell them. Many will provide this service. If not, they will ask you to meet at the office. Let your agent know how you want to communicate. Do you prefer phone calls, emails, text messages or all of the above? Remember once you are under a buyers agreement, it is our job to provide you with our best service and help you find your best home.

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Bring in the "Chi" into your Edmonton Home

Creating a calming ambience in your home is essential when selling. Buyers want to feel at welcomed the moment they step into your home. Below are a few ways to create a welcoming atmosphere.




Declutter, Clean and Organize Everything

Rule of thumb: If you do not plan on using it in the next three months, pack it away or store it.
Clutter reduces the opportunity for feng shui to shine throughout your the entire home. Clear clutter from all rooms, closets, cupboards and drawers.


Clean windows are crucial for good feng shui to flow as they symbolize your eyes to the world and allow light and energy to enter your home. Fix any squeaky doors or floors to create positive energy in each room. Open windows to create a fresh room filled with oxygen. Do not use strong air fresheners.

Provide a Strong Feng Shui Front Entrance

Your home primary gets its flow of chi energy through the front door so it is important to ensure the chi energy is strong and well maintained. "Wow" your guests as they enter your home. Create a welcoming entrance within eyesight of your front entrance with beautiful furniture, decor and color. Maintain the quality of your entrance, keeping it clutter-free and sparkling. Add a fresh coat of paint to the front door if needed, and remove old mats. Add a water fountain or a healthy-looking plant to your entrance (even if it is fake).

Create a Comfy Living Room

Your living room should feel large, inviting and comfortable. Avoid using furniture in the middle of the room and place your couches and love seats along a solid wall creating a feeling of more space. Add accent color by using small throw pillows. You can also increase energy for activating natural elements by adding plants, flowing water, wood decor and a fireplace throughout the room.

Build Boundaries in the Bedroom

Remove televisions, computers or exercise equipment as these things bring the energy of work and stress into a room that is meant for relaxation and romance. Having enough room for a bedside table on each side is important, as well as avoiding having your bed in line with the door.

Feng Shui Your Bathroom

Water attracts an abundance of wealth in feng shui and lots of water escapes the home through toilets, sinks and showers. Make sure you keep the toilet seat down and the bathroom door shut to keep positive energy from escaping.

Keep the Kitchen Happy

The heart of the home is the kitchen and in a perfect Feng, Shui home would be located in the centre of the dwelling. This is an important part of your home to attract health and prosperity. Add a bowl of fresh fruit, flowers or plants bring uplifting life and energy into this important area. Don't forget to keep counters clutter-free!

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Learn How to Write a Real Estate Offer to Purchase

As a buyer, when writing an offer on a property, you want to be able to pay the least possible amount for your

home. Sometimes buyers will offer 5-10% off of an asking price for no reason other than they were told to by a "friend" This is so silly You may want to offer more, you may want to offer less. The only way to make a reasonable offer is to do your homework.


REAL ESTATE TIP #1 - What the seller paid for their home is irrelevant.

REAL ESTATE TIP #2 - What the seller is asking for their home is also irrelevant.


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Knowing why a seller is selling is always helpful when you make an offer, but this information is protected by the sellers real estate unless it is allowed in writing to be disclosed. However knowing the reason for selling is still irrelevant on the true market value of the home, as is the asking price. There are several things to take into consideration, prior to making an offer on any home.


  • Market Conditions: Is it a buyers market or a seller's market? Knowing what type of real estate market you are in will help you choose an initial offer price. Completing a community absorption rate is the easiest way to know.
  • Possession Date: Edmonton Real Estate Agents have access to this information and as a rule of thumb, the quicker, the possession date, the more motivated the seller is. Most homeowners in Edmonton have a 30-day negotiable possession date. If a longer possession date or a set date is asked for, this is an indication which the seller needs a specific date and can be more important than price. Keep in mind, if the property is tenant occupied, tenants do have a 90-day tenant-right. Normally, homeowners with tenant occupied properties or vacant property are more motivated.
  • History: Your REALTOR® will know the history of this home. How long the sellers have owned the property, how long they have been trying to sell it and if there have been any price adjustments. Your real estate agent is also required to pull the title of the property which will indicate any recent financial debts including the current mortgage to ensure there will be enough funds to close on possession date.
  • Condition and Size: Size is a factor of price more in places like China than Edmonton. The value of a home is in the condition. You may want to go back into the home to take a better look at the overall condition. Is the flooring laminate or hardwood? Are the faucets Walmart or Moen? Has the yard been meticulously maintained properly or neglected? Will you be replacing any fixtures, chattels, windows, shingles in the near future? Look at the property through the eyes of your experienced real estate agent. They will notice things you don't.
  • Complete a Buyers Comparative Market Analysis: Examine all recent comparable sales. Only use recent properties that are similar in configuration, age, and location to the home you want to buy. Your REALTOR® can complete this for you.

REAL ESTATE TIP #3 - If the property has been staged, don't be fooled by how pretty it looks. Staging a home does not increase property values.


Read more about purchasing a home in Edmonton with our simple 5 step process

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How to find a QUALIFIED buyer

Finding a QUALIFIED buyer for your home is not easy. Everyone wants to own real estate, but not everyone can qualify. If you have been trying to sell your property and are finding it difficult to find a buyer for your home, there are some tricks to the real estate trade. Especially now with the government restrictions put upon us with qualify at 2% higher than your interest rate.


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Open Houses

Open Houses in Edmonton can be hit and miss. You can't put up signs and expect a buyer who is in a position to purchase, who thinks your home is perfect and is qualified to purchase to walk off the street and put an offer on your home. It is not that simple. Keep an open mind. Most buyers attending Open Houses are still in the "looking stage". Open Houses can receive constant foot traffic if done right. Read more on how to have a productive open house.

Adjust your expectations

Not everyone who inquires on your home is really interested. There is no such thing as a perfect home. You may love your home, but the reality is, your home is only a tangible commodity. Appraisers, inspectors, lawyers, financial institutions, and BUYERS can appreciate the effort of any upgrades, but it really comes down to money. Even if you find a buyer who is willing to pay more for your home because it staged, does not mean it will be appraised at the agreed-upon price, therefore cannot sell.

Talk to REALTORS

Expect calls from Edmonton Real Estate Agents. Listen carefully. You will know in the first few minutes if they are looking to help you sell (list) your home or have a qualified buyer who has inquired through them. Buyers who are working with real estate agents in Edmonton, are under a signed Buyers Brokerage Agreement and must fulfil their obligations if interested in your home. The real estate agent will be asking questions, lots of them. The agent is working in the best interest of their client buyer and is working in the best interest of their client.


The agent may be looking for more business and is calling to list your home. Take the time to talk. You may not want to list your home at this time, but if you are the one asking questions, you may learn something which will help you sell your home on your own. There are many real estate agents do not deal with buyers and specialize in listings only.

Marketing

There is more to marketing a home than putting your property on the MLS which impacts Realtor.ca, putting a sign in the front yard and adding a key box to your entrance. Advertising by word of mouth is a big advantage. There are almost 4000 Real Estate Agents associated with the Edmonton Real Estate Board who talk to each other. Tell your friends, family, co-workers, doctor, dentist and everyone you meet. Marketing your property to attract buyers who are qualified and in a position to purchase a property takes work and experienced, tech-savvy REALTORS have the know-how. This includes knowing the absorption rate in your community.


Find a great Edmonton Real Estate Agents who target markets homes to find the right buyers

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The first step to buying a home is deciding if you are ready to become a homeowner and start building equity for your future. There is a lot to know when it comes to buying a home in Edmonton. Whether you are buying your first condo, moving to a bigger house or downsizing, our in-depth 5 step home buyers Guide will take you through all the steps.



  • First: Get pre-qualified for a mortgage and choose a financial lender
  • Second: Choose the best Buyers Agent or Edmonton
  • Third: House hunt like a real estate professional online and in-person
  • Submit an offer with confidence by understanding Alberta Real Estate contracts
  • Fifth: Be prepared for other costs associated with buying a home in Alberta

STEP 1: Financing - Pre-approval and choosing a financial lender

Not all financial institutions are the same. If you choose to use a who works at your personal branch, keep in mind, most persons who work in a bank get paid by the hour, unlike a mobile mortgage specialist who only gets paid when they have completed, processed and get your mortgage application approved. For a list of mortgage brokers, contact us.


The first step to buying a house or condo in Edmonton is finding out how much your bank is willing to lend you based on the lenders' rules. Keep in mind with the change of Canada's new mortgage qualifying rules. You must qualify at two per cent higher than what your current interest rate will be.


Your lender will look at your income, your debts, your down payment and your credit rating. Having a verbal or online pre-approval is a waste of time and is not a real pre-approval. Your lender/Mortgage Broker will ask for a list of items to be provided including a recent bank statement, pay stubs, job letter, last 2 years of T4's for a true pre-approval.


A mortgage pre-approval will be in writing which is normally valid for 90 or 120 days. Pre-approvals will also include an interest rate guarantee - get this in writing from your lender to ensure you have documentation in the event interest rates rise prior to purchasing your new Edmonton home.


LEARN MORE ABOUT MORTGAGES

Our Edmonton Real Estate Agent Team is here to help you. We have several mortgage brokers we deal, feel free to reach out and ask us for a list of mortgage specialists.

STEP 2: Choosing the Right Buyers Agent

If you are like most people, you want to find a Realtor who is a good fit. Both real estate agents and Realtors have had to undergo a certain amount of training in order to qualify to help you buy or sell real estate. However, in Canada, in order to be considered a Realtor, a real estate professional must be a member of the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). There are several Realtors in Edmonton who choose not to work with buyers, while others choose to work solely with buyers. These Realtors are known as Buyer Agents.


There are several ways to find a buyers agent who will be a good fit. Most Realtors in Edmonton have their own websites. Some of these websites are very generic, while others provide personalized extensive real estate information. Some Realtors will also specialize in a specific part of Edmonton or have a real estates speciality such as condominiums, luxury homes, relocation moves or acreages. Another great way to find a buyer's agent is to visit open houses. However, if you fall in love with the house, it is in your best interest to seek out a different agent.


Interview a few different Realtors before signing a commitment called a "Buyer Brokerage Agreement". Remember this agent will be helping you make the biggest investment of your life and you should make sure they have your best interests in mind. Below is a list of questions which may help in the interview process when buying.

  • How long have you been a REALTOR?
  • Do you have any other real estate designations?
  • How much commission do you charge?
  • Will you show properties that are at a lesser commission offered?
  • How will you keep me informed on new properties which meet my search criteria?
  • What is your real estate niche or speciality?
  • Do you have a list of references I can contact?
  • How many homes are you willing to show me (If this number is less than ten - move on to another agent)
  • If I cancel my agreement, is there a fee?
  • When are you available to show me homes (Note* Part-time Realtors may not be able to accommodate your schedule)

LEARN MORE ABOUT BUYER BROKERAGE AGREEMENTS


To book an appointment for your personalized Edmonton home buying consultation, contact us.

STEP 3: House Hunting like a Real Estate Professional

Let's face it. You have been house shopping for your home online and have seen a few "bad real estate photos", or a property with no photos or wonder why a particular house has been on the market so long. The reality is, there may be great homes, but the sellers chose the wrong agent to market their home.


When you come across those bad real estate photos, try to look beyond the photographer, the horrific lighting and the messy house with clothes on the floor, pets or worse yet, the seller's children in those photos. If the selling agent has not taken the time to properly market a home, the sellers are not happy and want their home to be sold.


When there is only one exterior photo on a property, read the comment section. Odds are, this home is tenant occupied, or not in show-able condition (Very messy) or the sellers have chosen really ugly paint colors for the walls. These homes are usually fantastically priced properties that need a little TLC and some cleaning. If you are looking for a home in a particular area, learn to calculate the absorption rate to make the best financial purchase and make a great real estate deal.


Don't be fooled by pretty homes. Both a Seller and the Sellers Realtor want as many potential buyers into their home, but don't be fooled by how lovely it looks inside with that sparkling granite counter-top, cutest little girls rooms or awesome man cave. Take a deep look at the finishing. This is the best indicator for how well the home has been built and taken care of. A great buyers agent will point out imperfections they notice.


Don't overlook homes which have been on the market for a while. These properties may have had several price adjustments, especially in Edmonton's real estate market and may now be below or at the proper market value. Take a second look. There may also be other reasons which factor in a long time on the market which can include the property was "tied up" a few times with other offers which have fallen apart on financing or an inspection. Remember, when a pending offer is on a home, it can be conditional for a few weeks at a time. Another reason, a property may be longer on the market could be due to a "lis pendens", probate, civil enforcement or other government enforcement contingencies.


HOW TO CALCULATE THE ABSORPTION RATE IN ANY NEIGHBORHOOD

STEP 4: Submitting the Offer

Normally there are two basic (three when purchasing a condominium or more with rural properties and acreages) conditions or "subject to's" when purchasing a home in Edmonton.


  • Financing: Although you have completed your pre-approval, this does not mean you have been qualified to purchase that dream home. Once an offer has been accepted, your financial institution will need to submit your offer to the underwriter and your credit will be checked again. Do not go out and purchase any major items which would require financing such as a new vehicle during this time frame. If you are obtaining a CHMC Mortgage, the credit check will be done for a minimum of the last seven years.
  • Inspection: Hire a certified residential property inspector with a good reputation and credentials. The cost in Edmonton for a certified residential home inspector usually costs between five to six hundred dollars. No matter what type of home you are buying, including foreclosed properties to new builds. This small fee can save you thousands of future dollars.
  • Condominium Documents (Condo purchases): Always double check you have received all condominium documents and review them. If you do not understand the legality or do not have the time, have your real estate lawyer review them for you. There is a lot of information in the condominium documents and you do not want to be surprised with a $30,000 special assessment when you move in.
  • Rural and Acreage: Septic inspections are beyond the scope of a standard home inspection but when purchasing acreage in Alberta, they are crucial. Other conditions you should add to your rural purchase agreement include satisfactory water well, water flow, water quality tests and pumping equipment inspections


STEP 5: Buyer Beware & Other Closing Costs

Calculating the cost to purchase a home in Edmonton is pretty simple. Calculate your total down payment plus add one and a half per cent of the total purchase price of your home. For example on a $300,000 home, with a five per cent down payment, you will need a total of $19,500. Your financial institution will ask to see this additional amount to ensure you have enough money for closing costs such as lawyer fees, title transfers, mortgage application, and appraisal fees. Additional mortgage fees like CHMC can be added into your mortgage or can be paid upfront.


If you have added certain terms into your purchase agreement, such as "Seller to repair a broken window, steam clean carpets, remove dog faeces from the backyard, etc, you may also want to add an additional clause


"Seller will allow the purchasers to complete a satisfactory walk-through regarding the terms of the property prior to possession"


In Alberta, the transfer of real estate titles is processed a bit different than other provinces and keys do not get released until monies have been received by the Sellers lawyer. In the event and terms were not completed, it is more difficult for remediation this after.


Note* If you are purchasing a foreclosure, keep in mind, that this property is sold "As Is, Where Is".


If you have any other real estate question about purchasing a home in Edmonton or the surrounding area, contact us by email.

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Edmonton Homes for Sale
Contact: 780-910-5179

Contact Information

Audrey Abuan

780-910-5179

audrey@audreyabuan.com


Brandon-Lee Abuan

780-237-7074

brandonleeabuan@gmail.com

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