Key Questions When Buying Your First Home
Take the next step towards achieving your #adultinggoals by getting the lowdown on homeownership.
Your day job has turned into something you might be proud to call a career and you finally own a car that wasn’t loaned to you in high school. You’re basically an adult now — that is, if you weren’t worried about your landlord showing up unannounced at any moment or wondering when your roommate is finally going to do her dishes.
If you want to stop renting, but are overwhelmed by the maintenance and responsibility that goes into owning an entire detached home, consider looking into a condo-style home or townhome instead. Purchasing a property like this is putting yourself into a good kind of debt — you make monthly payments, just like renting, but you’re actually building equity.
Let us dispel a few of the myths that might be holding you back by answering a few of the most common questions renters have when transitioning into townhouse ownership. From upkeep to insurance, we’ve got you covered.
Is it a good investment?
You need somewhere to live, but who really benefits from cashing your rent cheque? Instead of padding someone else’s wallet, build home equity while investing in something you can earn money off of in the future. The ultimate sign of meeting your #adultinggoals has to be learning fiscal responsibility.
So long as you don’t borrow against your mortgage (unless you need funds suddenly, in which case, the banks will be happy to loan you more if you own a home), and you don’t intend to live in your townhome until you’re old and gray, your home is likely to increase in value.
Who’s responsible for the upkeep?
Unlike owning a detached, single-family residence, if you buy a townhome or condo-style home, you won’t have to shovel snow or cut grass. The property management team takes care of it, which means not only do you free up garage space (no need to store mowers, etc.), but your free time is truly your own.
What about green space?
You can still have a backyard without purchasing a detached home. Many townhomes, such as those is communities like Paisley, have gated, private front yards which are perfect for pets. With additional trails and parks close by, you’ll be able to balance your much-needed downtime with some fresh air — even if it’s only while relaxing in your little outdoor oasis.
What amenities should you look for?
Many condo and townhome communities include trails, playgrounds, tennis courts, ice rinks and much more — so don’t settle. By choosing a community that offers instant access to all the great amenities in your new community, it’ll be easier to save money on gym memberships and stay motivated.
How affordable is a mortgage compared to paying rent?
Not only is a condo often more reasonably priced than a single-family home, but your mortgage payments will likely be comparable to your rent. The average one-bedroom apartment rents for about $950 per month, and payments on a private, attached-garage Brookfield townhome start at $423 bi-weekly (or roughly $846 monthly). Townhomes also have great resale value, as many other first-time homebuyers are looking to invest in a similar property.
What about those condo fees?
While strata and condo fees may give buyers sticker shock up front, they’re much more predictable than the cost of maintaining a detached home. Additionally, these fees cover the cost of building insurance, so you only need to insure the inside of your home and its contents. A portion of your fees go into a reserve fund that’s in place to help pay for unexpected fixes that may not be covered under warranty. The best part? You don’t even have to deal with the contractors yourself!
Will I be isolated?
In addition to having a group of neighbours close by, choosing a smaller townhome project means it’s easy to build a community of friends. Plus, you’ll have lots in common with those in your community, such as owning a home in the same complex, making decisions about the development together and taking part in events and social activities.
Investing in a Brookfield Townhome is a great first step to reaching your #adultinggoals. Why? A townhome that has all the same benefits of owning a detached home without the upkeep, and at a price most Edmonton renters can afford. It’s time to stop wasting money on rent, and start investing in your future.