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How long does it take to find and buy a home?

“Always pick your yard based on your Summer lifetstyle.”


August 2, 2018 - Karl Yeh

If you're in the market to buy a home, wondering how long it takes to make the purchase? What are the steps involved when buying? In this episode, we discuss the time frame to purchase a home, whether it's a resale home or a new home. We explore different elements that impact buying a home including the purchase agreement, mortgage approval, conditions for approval and more. Finally, we also break down the home buying into three phases and the key actions that happen in each phase. 


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Karl Yeh:

Hi everyone, I'm Karl Yeh and welcome to another Homebuyers School video, a channel where you get the latest strategies, tactics, and tips from home buying experts.

And remember if this is your first time on this channel and you want to get the latest strategies from the experts, hit the little the notification bell so you don't miss anything.

So today I'm joined by Cory McDonald, [00:00:30] Community Manager with Brookfield Residential,  And the question we're gonna answer is:

How long does it take to buy a house?

Cory McDonald:               

Really good question. Each circumstance, each person's individual time frame for researching a home may take a little bit longer.

Some people may have time frame restrictions, they need to buy a little bit quicker, or some people may have the resources to be able to take their time, look at all the options that are out there.

But once you've narrowed down that one of, that specific home that works best for covering your needs, the [00:01:00] time frames do kind of restrict a little bit.

And that would depend on if you're buying a brand new versus buying a resale home.

Most resale purchases, they'll have a condition removal period.

So you write your purchase agreement, write in contract the offer you're putting in, and once that gets accepted you would have about a seven day time frame to meet the conditions of that contract.

And what that means is if you're putting down an additional deposit or if your bank requires you to pay off a car loan or [00:01:30] to sell a current home to meet the conditions of that approval.

So you would have about a seven day window to meet those conditions on that contract before the sale would be finalized.

With a builder, sometimes it takes a little bit longer or we give you a little more of a longer time, maybe about a 10 to 14 day time frame to get mortgage approval and to come up with the remainder of either a 5% or 20% down payment depending on the style of home that you're purchasing.

Within that conditional removal period, [00:02:00] it's still a time that if you don't get the mortgage approval you're looking for or if you're not able to get into that place or your circumstances change and you are no longer able to get into that home, you can still cancel and typically any deposits you would have given at that point would still be reimbursed.

It's after that seven to 14 day conditional removal period once you've met the conditions of that agreement, you've given any remaining deposits, that's when you're more legally bound into the contract. [00:02:30] 

So that's a long-winded way of saying that

the typical purchase time frame happens anywhere from about seven to 14 days.

But it's a pretty busy seven to 14 days.

Karl Yeh:                             

I think when we're talking about how long does it take to buy a house, I see it as three phases.

The first phase is a research phase. So you've done your research online, talked to people. Also walked through some show homes, right, if you're buying a new home or even if you're buying a resale, you still have to walk through the house.

At the same time too you're looking at [00:03:00] your mortgage approvals to see if you get approved, and in some cases you're looking at your down payments, do you have enough to pay down.

I think to me the second phase is actually the contract phase where yes, I've got all this approved, and that's where you're talking about the seven to 14 days.

Where you're actually signing the contract, making sure the conditions are, you've met all the conditions.

And I think in the third phase, the actual move-in phase. So if it's a new home, [00:03:30] that's when it's taking however long it takes to build your home, and if it's a resale home, however long it takes you to move into said home.

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Cory McDonald:                Correct, yeah.

Karl Yeh:                              That would be kind of the three phases?

Cory McDonald:               

I think that's very accurate. I would also put in there depending on the markets, negotiations could potentially happen right around that contract phase too, so what you're willing to offer to the seller or the builder versus what they're willing to accept.

So that would kind of be played into that part as well.

But you're right, there would be a little bit of a difference [00:04:00] from if you're building brand new, there's a little bit of a longer time frame for getting possession of your home versus moving into either a feature home or a quick possession home from builder versus a resale home where the time frames could be a little bit sooner as well.

Karl Yeh:                             

Perfect, thank you very much Cory. And the question I have for you is:

How long did it take you to buy your last home and what were the steps that it took to finally actually move in?

Let us know in the comments section below. Thank you very much for joining us, and we'll catch you next time.


Your turn:

Let us know if you have additional home buying questions that we can answer by submitting them in the comments section below. 

Homebuyer's School publishes new content weekly so subscribe or check back regularly for the latest information, strategies and tips from homebuying experts.  

About Cory McDonald:

Cory has been working for Brookfield Residential for over 5 years and has had the opportunity to sell  in several beautiful communities around Calgary and Cochrane. He has experience selling everything from starter town-homes to move-up homes within the company. Cory originally grew up in Calgary and after a short stint living in the greater Vancouver area, he returned home for a better quality of life to raise his family.

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