The following article is a guest post by Brennan Valenzuela, a writer for Ratehub.ca, a website that allows people to compare Canadian mortgage rates. It also features a comprehensive education centre to help address common first-time home buyer questions. Ratehub is a great source for all the latest Canadian mortgage news.
The Quebec housing market is expected to rebound in 2012 and 2013 after sales decreased 3.5% in 2011. Hockey, poutine, and now condos — is something on the list of things that Quebecers love. According to the CMHC, condo construction in Quebec helped boost the national number for housing starts in February!
Quebec mortgage rates
Quebec mortgage rates are likely to increase moderately over the next two years; however, mortgage rates are currently at extreme lows due to a mortgage pricing war. It might be best to take advantage of a low mortgage rate while lenders are still aggressively competing for your business.
Additional purchase costs in Quebec
Most home buyers have already factored the down payment into their budget when preparing to buy a new property. However, there are additional purchase costs to account for. Whether you’re looking for a condo that’s steps from the St. Lawrence River at La Seigneurie de Beauport or at Le Roc Fleuri Penthouses in the heart of downtown Montreal, these are your costs beyond the mortgage.
Quebec Land Transfer Tax
When you buy a home in Quebec, you must pay a title registration fee. The land transfer tax is calculated by using the “value of your home” against a scale. The “value of your home” used for the calculation is the greater of:
- The purchase price
- The value of consideration listed on the deed
- The value of the home using a municipal assessment factor to reflect the true market value
Also, the tax calculation is greater for homes in Montreal, which has an additional tax step. For example, a $560,000 home in Montreal will cost $7200 in land transfer taxes versus $6900 for the same home that sits anywhere else in the province.
If you purchased your home using less than 20% down, you must pay mortgage insurance (CMHC insurance). The insurance itself will be rolled into your mortgage, but the QST on the insurance is due at closing.
The purchase of a home is also a big legal process, so you will need a real estate lawyer to help you with the contracts and paperwork. The cost of this service ranges from $500 and up. And if your lawyer looks like Ally McBeal or Tom Cruise, that’s just icing on the cake.
Acquiring insurance for your home and title is not mandatory by federal law, but most lenders won’t finance you without it, especially title insurance.
- Title insurance is necessary if you want to protect yourself from challenges on your deed
- Property insurance is an option available to you if you want to protect your home from damage.
Never sign on the dotted line without first getting a home inspection. An inspection could save you thousands of dollars in unforeseen home repairs. A home inspection starts around $500. The home inspector will look at the entire home including the plumbing, heating, and air conditioning. If you can, try to hire an inspector who is a member of a professional association.
If you’re buying a new construction home, you must pay Harper’s GST.
First-time home buyer rebates
If you’re a first-time home buyer, you can recover some of your purchase costs using the First-time Home Buyers’ Tax Credit. The rebate is claimed on your personal tax form and works out to $750 back into your pocket.
Those awesome renderings we’ve posted throughout the story? Here’s a list of the favourites we included within the article: