So, you’re buying your first home. Super exciting stuff. As a first time home buyer, there are a lot of exciting steps you’ll be taking – getting pre-qualified, finding a great realtor to work with, getting your financing in order, and finally getting the mortgage approved. (then poppin’ bottles!).
Buying a home = lots of numbers. Especially as a first timer. Down payment amount, credit score, household income, property transfer tax,...the list goes on.
We know it can be a lot. So, we’re here to lighten the (mental) load, and help you be prepared.
Down Payment cheat sheet
• If you’re using your RRSP for a down payment, you can withdraw up to $25,000, and you need to begin to repay your RRSP two years after you’ve withdrawn the money. You’ll have 15 years to repay the funds.
• If you’re purchasing a home under 500K, your down payment needs to be at least 5%
• If you’re purchasing a home that’s more than $500,000 and less than $1 million the minimum down payment is 5% on the first $500,000 plus 10% of the remaining balance
• If you’re purchasing a home that’s $1 million or more, the minimum down payment is 20%
Land Transfer Tax Rebate
If you’re a first time home buyer, there are some really sweet tax benefits you can take advantage of when you’re buying a home. They’re different for every province, and they can be a little confusing, so we’re breaking it down for you.
You have to pay land transfer tax in Ontario, and it’s due when you’re closing the mortgage.
Property tax amounts:
• 0.5% on the first $55,000 of the house price
• 1.5% on the next $150,000 of the house price
• And, 2% on amounts over $400,000
The First Time Home Buyer’s Program basically reduces or eliminates the amount of Property Transfer Tax you pay when you buy your first home. Which, we know you care about, since buying a home is a big investment (congrats, btw!).
What’s in it for me/How does it work…
• Something cool for you Ontarians: the province recently doubled the first-time homebuyers’ Property Transfer Tax refund to $4,000.
• If your property is less than $368,250 you don’t have to pay the tax. Score! You just have to make sure you meet the requirements below.
• If your home is over $368,250 you qualify for the maximum rebate, but still owe the remainder of their land transfer tax.
To qualify for the full exemption…
• Be 18 years of age or older,
• Live in the home within 9 months of purchasing it
• You cannot have owned a home before, and
• If you have a spouse, they cannot have owned a home during the time they have been your spouse.
Also, important to note: If you’re buying your home with your spouse, but only one of you qualifies for this rebate, you can still receive 50% of the rebate.
And, if you live in (the city of) Toronto there’s an additional rebate...
On top of the Ontario rebate (we just talked about) first-time homebuyers in who live in the City of Toronto can qualify for a rebate equal to the full amount of their municipal land transfer tax, up to a maximum of $3,725.
Phew! We know that’s a whole lot of info. Don’t worry you don’t have to memorize the above, we’re going to be here along the way to help you with all the details. And, if you’re still have questions, concerns, just feel like chatting, our Mortgage Specialists know the ins and outs and are here to help. You can Live Chat with them, or shoot them an email here.