Posted by: Karim Ali

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A Guide to Writing an Offer


Dive into the essentials of crafting a compelling home offer in Ontario with our quick guide. Learn the secrets to negotiating and securing your dream home with ease, including a pivotal tip that could change the game. Perfect for anyone looking to navigate the competitive real estate market successfully.


In today’s fast-paced real estate market, securing your dream home in Ontario can be a daunting task. However, with a bit of know-how and strategic planning, you can craft a compelling offer in 60 seconds or less. Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or a seasoned investor, this guide will walk you through the process step-by-step, saving my most valuable advice for the end.


Understanding Fair Offer Price


The foundation of a strong offer is knowing what constitutes a fair price. This requires a bit of research into recent sales of comparable properties in the area. Look for homes with similar features, in similar neighborhoods, and with recent closing dates. This will give you a benchmark to determine a competitive yet fair offer price for the home you’re interested in.


Deciding on Your Deposit


Once you’ve determined a fair offer price, it’s time to decide on the deposit amount. This is a crucial part of your offer, as it shows the seller your seriousness and commitment. In Ontario, the deposit is typically 1-5% of the purchase price and is only due upon acceptance of the offer. Based on my experience in Ottawa, here’s a general guideline:


  • For homes priced between $0-500k, a deposit of 1-2% of the offer price is common.
  • Homes in the $500k-750k range usually see deposits around 2%.
  • For properties close to or above $1 million, expect to put down a deposit of 3%-5%.


Remember, the amount can vary based on the price of the home and the level of competition in the market.


Selecting a Closing Date


The closing date is when you’ll officially take possession of the property. This should be strategically chosen to align with both your needs and any flexibility the seller may have. Consider your own timeline for moving, but also be open to accommodating the seller’s preferences for a smoother negotiation process.


Inclusions and Exclusions


Be explicit about what you expect to be included with the home. This could range from appliances to light fixtures, or even specific furniture pieces. Conversely, specify anything attached to the home you do not want. Clear communication here prevents misunderstandings and sets clear expectations from the outset.


Schedule A: Conditions of Purchase


This is where you’ll detail any conditions of your offer. Conditions vary significantly between condos and houses due to differences in ownership and responsibility. Whether it’s financing approval, a home inspection, or insurance concerns, these conditions protect you as the buyer. Remember, the specifics for condos versus houses will be covered in another video, but always tailor your conditions to the unique aspects of the property and your situation.


The Game-Changing Tip: Communication


Now, for the most critical piece of advice — speak directly with the seller or their agent before drafting your offer. This step is often overlooked but can be a game-changer in negotiations. Direct communication allows you to gauge the seller’s priorities and flexibility, giving you leverage when finalizing the terms of your offer. Plus, it demonstrates your genuine interest in the property and can make your offer stand out in a competitive market.


Wrap-Up and Professional Assistance


Crafting an effective offer on a home in Ontario doesn’t have to be complicated. By following these steps and leveraging the power of communication, you’re well on your way to making a compelling offer that stands a strong chance of being accepted. And remember, if you’re looking for professional guidance through this process, experienced realtors are invaluable resources. Buyers don’t typically pay for these services, so don’t hesitate to reach out for expert assistance in drafting your offer.


In the realm of real estate, knowledge is power, and preparation is key. By equipping yourself with the right information and strategies, you can navigate the home buying process with confidence. Best of luck on your home buying journey!


Bonus tips


If you’re competing against other offers, consider writing a personal letter to the seller explaining why their home is perfect for you. This emotional touch can make your offer stand out.


Be ready to act quickly. Have your financing pre-approved and your documents in order, so you can submit your offer as soon as you find the right home.

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