There are a variety of costs associated with buying any home. Here is what you should be aware of when buying a home in British Columbia.
- Deposit – A deposit amount is agreed upon when you sign the offer to purchase (usually 5% of purchase price), this is usually due within 5 days after signing the contract.
- Down Payment – Ideally you would have 20% saved for a down payment on a residential property. If this is not the case you’ll probably have to get mortgage loan insurance. It protects banks and other lenders against the risk of mortgage default, just like property insurance protects you in case of loss. CMHC is a provider of mortgage loan insurance.
- Mortgage Costs
These may include the mortgage companies lawyer or notary fees, appraisal fee (if applicable) and land title registration fees.
- Property Transfer Tax
This is a Provincial Government Tax that applies to all transfers of real estate and is payable on the completion date. The rate of the tax is 1% on the first $200,000 of the purchase price, 2% on the next $1,800,000 of the purchase price, and 3% of the purchase price that exceeds $2,000,0000. There are some exemptions for first-time home buyers.
- Goods and Services Tax (GST) There is no GST on the purchase price of a used residential property that was occupied as a residence before you bought it. There is a 5% tax that applies to the purchase of new construction and on the resale of accommodations that have been rented out for short term or nightly rental. The payment of the GST can be deferred if the new purchaser intends to use the accommodation for short term or nightly rental at least 90% of the time and they have a GST number. (consult your accountant)
Buyers are required to arrange insurance on single family residential accommodations, and liability and contents insurance on strata-titled properties.
- Legal / Notary Fees A lawyer will process the transfer of home ownership from the seller to the buyer into the Land Title and Survey Authority Office also if you are financing your purchase with a new mortgage loan, there will be a further fee and disbursements to prepare and register the mortgage documents.
- Appraisal Fee – When the lending institution requires an appraisal of the home before approving your loan, it may be your responsibility to pay the appraiser’s fee.
- Strata Fees
For areas that are affiliated with Strata associations, there will be monthly maintenance charges – you will need to understand what these fees cover. The Strata Corporation is also entitled to levy special assessments for extraordinary expenses if necessary.
*May be additional costs not indicated here.