• Melanie Evans

5 New Year's Resolution for Those Hoping to Buy a Waterloo Region Home in 2022

New Year's resolutions aren't limited to health and fitness. They can go beyond making vows to eat healthier, quit smoking, and read at least one book every month.

The annual list of goals might be narrowed down to a specific topic, such as buying a home. Preparation is essential for this undertaking, as the market in 2022 is not likely to be easy to navigate for buyers.

With this in mind, here's a look at five New Year's resolutions those considering buying a Waterloo Region home in 2022 should make on December 31st.

1. Save for a down payment

Depending on the loan you want to qualify for, you’ll want to save at least 3 to 20% for your down payment, and will probably have to cover another 1 to 3% for closing costs. A New Year's resolution should be how to come up with this amount in 12 t0 24 months, with 12 months the ideal.

To put away as much as $500 to $1,000 per month, try methods like trading down to a cheaper car or picking up a side job. Even doing things like cutting back on takeout and cancelling some of those subscriptions you have too many of can help.

2. Organize your finances

You’ll need a thorough understanding of your income and expenses to embark on the home-buying process. This is partially because you’ll need to be preapproved for a loan by a lender before you can go house shopping. A preapproval letter provides an estimate on how much you can spend. Before strolling through an open house or making appointments to see homes with your agent, you’ll want to speak with a lender and get a preapproval letter in order to know what you can afford. Before you contact a lender, she adds, you’ll need to put together a list of financial information, including:

  • Your monthly income

  • The sum of your total monthly debt payments (auto loans, student loans, and credit card minimum payments)

  • Your credit score and any credit issues in the past few years

  • How much cash you can put down

3. Find a real estate agent

We recommend that you secure a real estate agent as soon as it even crosses your mind that you want to buy a home. Purchasing a home is most likely the biggest investment you will ever make and it is so important to have a real estate adviser in the form of an experienced local real estate agent from day one, walking you through and educating you on the buying process from A to Z.

Take your time and choose your real estate carefully, but once you do find the right fit, believe what the agent tells you. For example, take your Realtors’ recommendations on attorneys, mortgage professionals and inspectors. We have gone through this process more than you, your family members, your friends or your service providers.

4. Act quickly

Once you do start looking for a Waterloo Region home in what is still a tight market, you'll need to be willing to take quick action. If you, as a home buyer, see something perfect, chances are other buyers think it is perfect too, so you are likely to have plenty of competition.

Don’t hesitate in making an offer if you think there is a chance you could lose a particular property that you have fallen in love with. However, make sure you consult at length with your real estate agent as you do, to help ensure that the offer is one that sellers are likely to be most receptive while not seeing you pay too much or make too many unnecessary concessions.

Having a great real estate agent on your side will prove invaluable if there are negotiations are called for, as they can act with you - and on your behalf - to help you get the great deal on that right for you Waterloo Region home you are hoping for.

5. Have some fun with the home shopping process

Remember to lighten the pressure as much as you can, as buying a home is an exciting time, and you’ll want to remember the process fondly. Enjoy yourself, because it should be fun.

One way to do that, and be a little adventurous at the same time, is to take excursions to neighbourhoods you’re interested in. Get out of your car and walk around, get something to eat, and see what it’s like there during the daytime and the evening. Hit the stores and the outdoor spaces and talk to some of the locals. And if you don't know where to go to get a better look at your possible new home, ask your Realtor, they'll be happy to help you.

Ready to start looking for that perfect for you Waterloo Region home? Let Team Pinto use their huge local real estate experience and expertise to help you. Contact the award-winning Team Pinto here, or book a free Zoom consultation to discuss your unique Waterloo Region real estate needs here.

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