If you are looking to buy or build your own house there is plenty of choice in Saskatoon with both pre owned homes and new builds available - to buy or rent.
The market isn't too extreme for buying Saskatoon real estate and it is one of the cheaper parts of Canada to live. Saskatchewan is becoming more of a "Have" Province though with abundant natural resources so it may well soon see some dramatic rises in values.
New Build Homes
With the new builds you can buy a "spec home" normally already built to a builder's standard floor plan. Or you can meet with the different builders and either choose the home you want from their selection of blueprints with different "upgrades" or have one designed for you.
There are a multitude of New Home Builders in the Saskatoon real estate market and it is definitely worth teaming up with one of the
. They may be slightly more expensive but will be worth it in the long run especially when it comes to warranty work and completing the project on time.
With a new build you should receive a minimum 1 year builders warranty (some now offer more). The builder should schedule a series of inspections throughout their warranty period to deal with any issues and should also respond to urgent problems (loss of heat in winter, dangerous faults etc.). This is supported by a 5 year Provincial program called the
New Home Warranty Program
In most cases you will be able to use the builder's lawyer free of charge to close the transaction but in the event of legal issues they will represent the builder and you will have to find your own.
The mortgage provider will require a home inspection which is normally a paperwork exercise with a fee attached! New Build homes will attract GST of 6%, upto 3% may be rebated directly to you by the builder off the price and this will then be confirmed by Canada Revenue about 6 months after the sale. It's a very long winded way of doing it, but basically you may only be charged GST at 3% on the sale! (this is dependant upon the value of the home you are buying and should be confirmed by the builder/realtor before signing contracts).
Depending upon the deal negotiated with the builder, be prepared for a lot of expense to landscape and fence the gardens, any basement development and all the "small" things add up like curtains and fittings.
Overall, it is nice to know that the warranty will cover everything while you concentrate on settling in to your new life!
Pre Owned Homes
Pre-owned homes are a different prospect (as in most places!) and the decision to buy will hinge on the home inspection report which is a must have. Most money lenders will require one before agreeing the mortgage and it's essential for your peace of mind.
With the houses being wooden, some major maintenance could be required - most roofs last 10-15 years and pest infestation will have serious consequences for example. A solicitor is essential for your legal protection and to ensure a smooth possession.
Some extremely creative financing is available to enable those who won't qualify for the full mortgage amount to purchase their own property. Because of the unique opportunities for financing your own home in Canada it is imperative that you take expert advice to ensure that you know all of your options.
Some of the benefits of a pre-owned home are that it will normally be landscaped, could be developed in the basement and any teething problems should have been dealt with. There will be no GST applied to the house price which is quite a saving, though the price of the house will be adjusted for the landscaping etc.
The most important benefit is that you may be able to take possession very promptly and could save you money on a rental property.
The Saskatoon real estate market has plenty of
available so please ensure you shop around and find a decent, well maintained property. It is very important for your safety that you ensure that the property is correctly maintained. There are plenty that aren't and could have potentially dangerous faults due to lack of maintenance, illegal development by an unqualified tradesman and non adherence to building regulations and safety standards.
Definitely research your insurance liabilities and make sure you have sufficient coverage - as a minimum you'll need to have your personal belongings covered on a contents plan.
Ensure you understand your rights and obligations as a tenant and read the Saskatchewan
before signing any rental agreement.
Good luck, hopefully you'll find the home of your dreams in the Saskatoon real estate market!