3 common mistakes made by pre-construction home-buyers

If you’re thinking about going pre-construction for your next home, you should know that it’s not the same as buying a resale home. Although you’ll have a brand-new home at the end of it all, the process takes longer, involves a lot more steps and many things can go wrong.

Help ensure your new-home buying experience is a good one by avoiding some of the most common mistakes. Here are a few:

Not researching the builder
Buying pre-construction is a major investment of money, time and emotion, and you’ll want to make sure you’re dealing with a reputable company. Before you sign a purchase agreement, visit a builder’s sales centre and some of the communities they built earlier. If possible, talk to homeowners about their experience – not just in terms of workmanship, but also customer service.

You should also consult the online Ontario Builder Directory, which will provide a clear picture of the construction history and after-sales warranty track record of a builder you’re interested in.

Not reviewing the purchase agreement with a lawyer
Purchase agreements are long and complicated documents, so it helps to have someone who can walk you through the details. A qualified lawyer will help you understand exactly what is included in the purchase price of the home and whether everything that was agreed to verbally by your sales representative is reflected in writing.

Since your purchase agreement is a binding contract, it’s important to meet with a lawyer before you sign it. If you’re buying a condo, there’s a cooling-off period of ten days after you sign an agreement during which you may cancel it without penalty.

Not learning about warranty coverage
Almost every newly built home comes with a warranty from the builder that is backstopped by Tarion, a consumer protection organization. Warranty protection includes deposit coverage, compensation for unlawful closing delays and coverage for various construction defects, both small and large. Without exploring how this all works, some homeowners could miss out on coverage they don’t know they have.

To ensure you benefit from the warranty protection you’re entitled to, look for more information early on in your home-buying journey on tarion.ca

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