Shopping for a home in Coquitlam
Types of homes
With condominiums you own your space but not the building or land. You pay monthly fees for maintenance and repairs.
A townhouse is attached to another home, each townhouse has a private entrance but shares a wall.
Semi-detached homes have separate land and entrances but share a wall. Parking is shared sometimes too, so be sure to inquire.
A single/detached home is private and you own both the land and home. This means you are responsible for all regular costs – making it one of the more expensive options. The pro is that you have private spare and more control.
A duplex/triplex looks like a single home but is actually several units. Individuals ten to buy this type of home to rent out the additional units. A good option if you are looking to make immediate income to put towards the purchase.
Qualities to look for in your local Coquitlam real estate agent
Find a local Coquitlam realtor
Your local Coquitlam realtor, Louise Hendriks, will help you buy and sell real estate in Coquitlam, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, New Westminster and Burnaby. Before you select your realtor, be sure to do some research and make sure it’s the right fit.
Try to source a comfortable and confident agent. Make sure to have a lengthy conversation to gauge if they are a good personality match and don’t forget to ask important questions. For example: Ask how many properties they have sold and how recent the latest sale was. This will give you an idea of how active they are in the industry.
To help you find a local Coquitlam realtor to represent you, there are a number of approaches. You can ask for recommendations from your mortgage broker, friends and family. Alternatively, you may want to drive around the neighborhoods you are interested in and make note of the names of real estate agents that specialize in that area.
Good questions to ask yourself before the search
Taking the time to narrow down your home buying priorities can help your real estate agent find properties that are a good fit. This not only increases your chances of finding the house that’s right for you, but also speeds up the home buying process.
What will you and your family need in several years?
If you’re a newlywed couple, do you plan to have children? Do you have teenagers who will be moving out soon? Are you close to retirement? These questions will ensure you have the perfect amount of space for the time being and in the long term.
What sacrifices are you willing to make?
This is another way of narrowing down your priorities. Buying a house is a complex ordeal and you must prepare yourself for compromise. Make an ordered list of things that are essential and those you could trade up. A sample list can be seen below– skip to this section.
What area do you want to live in?
The area in which your home is located is a big consideration. The neighborhood can be a good investment because it can make an impact on your home’s resale value. Buying a fixer-upper in a good neighborhood can be a smart investment. Find communities with new shops opening, lots of people out and about, new buildings or condos going up, etc. To find out this information, read the local newspaper or look online and also chat with the locals. Explore the neighborhood and look at nearby homes to make sure you aren’t buying the only gem in sight.
Get an appraisal and find out the value of the home. Never buy the most expensive house in the neighborhood. It’s more of a risk to banks and there is a good chance it will not increase in value. Instead, try to find one of the least expensive homes in a neighborhood. Remember, when homes around you sell for more money than you paid, your home’s value goes up.
What features / amenities do I want?
- Are there enough bedrooms and bathrooms?
- Do you need a yard, basement or garage?
- Is there access to public transit?
- Are there any hospitals or shopping in the area?
- Are there any zoning bylaws which could cause issues?
- Will the property value increase?
- Does it have air conditioning, a pool or any other extras you desire?
- Does anyone have special needs?
- Do you want to live in a city or somewhere with land?
- Is it a long commute to work?
- Where will your children go to school?
- Am I close to family and friends?
- Do you want to be close to a place of worship or community centres?
- Make sure the wiring is updated
- Consider the life span of the roofing
- Is the landscaping is in good condition
- Are major appliances included?
- Is there any signs of mold or water damage?
- Check for fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors
- Are the windows sealed well?