For some time now, you visit real estate websites, read articles and ask your family and friends about their own house-purchasing experience. In short, the thought of buying your first brand-new home is making its way. But, what is THE best time to go for it? Our expert, Félix Cotte, provides a few possible answers.
WHEN TO BUY . . . According to Your Situation
As a general rule of thumb, it is rarely more profitable to rent than it is to buy, unless you benefit from extraordinarily low renting fees, a bargain price, for example.
It is always a good time to buy.
But, even though it seems obvious, one must start thinking about buying a house . . . when one can afford it. "It often happens that people start the visiting and selling processes and only then find out that they are not approved by the bank," says the real estate adviser, Félix Cotte. So, in order to avoid wasting your time and the seller's time, and we are not even talking about the disappointment it causes, one must be assured to be preapproved by the bank before starting the whole process.
Preapproval will also give you an edge when negotiating a better purchase price, since it proves to the promoters that you are serious. A mortgage broker will also be able to help you during this first step by evaluating in detail your credit situation in order to provide you with a realistic budget to help you in your researches. The latter will also be able to guide you through the different municipal programs for first-time brand-new-house buyers.
WHEN TO BUY . . . During the Construction Phases
If one is not in a hurry, buying in presale almost always guarantees a better purchase price. "Contractors need to presale between 30% and 60% of their units in order to start building," explains Felix Cotte. Furthermore, being the buyer of one of the last required presale units also provides a real benefit.
These are the last units required before construction can begin. In order to know what the situation is, one can ask very basic questions: Are you starting to build once you reach 50%? Do you have a limit date? "Even if they don't necessarily tell the truth, it is still possible to determine where we stand,” affirms the advisor.
On top of the price and the added benefit of negotiation, buying early during the project is the best way to make sure to obtain one the best units. The best options for the total area, the sun orientation, a patio, etc.
For those looking for more luxurious condo units at a good price, the end of the project is usually the best time to buy. "What remains at the end, is the profit of the contractor and if they have been looking to sell those units for a long time, they might want to get rid of them to start a new project," explains Felix Cotte. It is the dreamed occasion to get your hands on a rooftop penthouse with a 10% discount!
WHEN TO BUY . . . During the Year
Even though most people start looking for a house between February and April, basically around the lease renewal period, it is not necessarily the best moment. In fact, one should instead take advantage of the more quiet periods of the year . . . "During the middle of summer and the beginning of winter there is usually a lot less traffic in the sales offices. One must take advantage of this to obtain the best prices possible," says the consultant. "It is a little bit like the car industry, there are better times during the year than others," he concludes.
In short, like in most things, the perfect purchase process for a home is most of the time... a matter of timing!