Don’t Fall into the Appraisal Trap


Armed with a hard-earned down payment, pre-approval from lender and a wish-list of what you “must” have in your dream property, window shopping for homes can be an exciting experience.

And then it happens. You find the perfect place in your desired neighbourhood. Unfortunately, there are 10 others who have also fallen in love with “your” new home. And so, the bidding war begins.

Let’s say you win that battle, with the final selling price magically within your pre-approved amount as set by your lender. It is at this stage that buyers believe the hard work is over, and it is only a matter of signing a few papers to close the mortgage so you can finally get the keys to your new home. But that is not the case for some.

If an appointed appraiser assesses that the property value is less than what you offered in a high stakes bidding war, you could be in trouble. Continue reading

Team Case Study: On Winning (and Losing) Bidding Wars


Earlier this month, we launched a series documenting our CMO’s experiences with buying her first home in Toronto. We started by sharing some of the financial decisions Kerri-Lynn (KL) and her partner made, as well as what it was like to go to viewings and decide what type of home they wanted to buy. This week, she and I chatted about all the bidding wars she found herself in – and how she finally “won” her dream home. Continue reading

Bank of Canada Interest Rate Announcement: October 22, 2014

bank-of-canada-interest-rate-announcement Well, it’s official: the Bank of Canada (BoC) is leaving its overnight interest rate at 1.00% for another six weeks – a position it has held since September 2010. Since any change to the overnight rate would directly impact Prime rate, the announcement that it will remain low is not only good news for variable rate mortgage holders, it’s also good news for every Canadian who has any loan attached to Prime, as well as for those who want to borrow money in the near future. Continue reading

Team Case Study: Viewing and Choosing the Right Home


Last week, we launched a new series documenting RateHub’s own Kerri-Lynn’s (KL) experiences with buying her first home. We’ve already shared some of the financial decisions KL and her partner had to make, as well as how they built their team of real estate professionals, which is the foundation of the home buying process. For today’s post, she and I talked about the process of actually going on viewings, figuring out what they liked and how they ended up in a house vs. a condo. Continue reading

How to Customize Your Budget for Condo Living


Bought a condo recently? Congratulations! If you’re one of the nearly half of Canadians who always uses a budget, chances are you’ve already started to think about how your monthly expenses might change in this new living situation – especially if you had previously been renting or living at home. While in many cases condo living can end up being more affordable than purchasing a house, there are still particular financial considerations to keep in mind when redesigning your new budget.

Here are the main categories to consider adding to your budget, before, during and after the purchase of your condo.
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