5 Home buying tips

While Alberta’s new home market continues to ring up healthy sales, as a new home buyer you want to make sure you’ve made the right decision. Buying a home is the single biggest purchase most of us will ever make and, as with most important purchases, it is vital to do your homework to ensure your new home fits your lifestyle and meets your expectations.

An important part of this preparation process is to learn more about all the benefits and resources available through the Alberta New Home Warranty Program, a private organization that was established to provide protection for all consumers who purchase a new home or condominium in Alberta.  ANHWP does this by licensing and regulating Alberta’s home builders and managing a guarantee fund to ensure that consumers receive the new home warranty coverage they are entitled to by law. Here are some tips to help guide new home buyers through the purchasing process.

1. Choose the type of home that meets your lifestyle

Read the real estate section of your local paper for information about new developments. Also, check out builders’ websites for photos and floor plans.  Look for affiliations to Professional Home Builder (CHBA) organizations, Sustainable Construction accreditations (Built Green, Energuide) and a reputable Warranty Program.

2. Determine what you can afford

Once you’ve chosen the location and type of home that fits your needs, meet with a financial representative to determine a mortgage amount that you can comfortably afford. This ensures that you spend your time wisely on homes within your price range. You should also consider getting a pre-approved mortgage, which will allow you to shop with added confidence. ( Grant Mortgage:  www.grantmortgage.com )

3. Research your builder

A simple call to 1-800-352-8240 or a visit to www.AlbertaNewHomeWarranty.com will give you access to information about all registered home builders in Alberta, including their customer service record with ANHWP. When you find a builder you like, talk to them about previous developments, and go straight to the source by asking current homeowners questions about their homes and neighbourhoods.

4. Attend educational seminars

These useful seminars are designed to help you learn from industry professionals about the new home buying process and the statutory warranty protecting all new homes built in Alberta. Visit the ANHWP website for more information.

5. Talk with a real estate lawyer

Your builder may recommend a  real estate or condominium lawyer to meet with before signing a Purchase Agreement to make sure you understand exactly what is and is not included in the price of your new home.