How to Buy a Presale Condo in BC
- Nov 1, 2023
Buying a presale condo in British Columbia (BC) can be an exciting venture. It offers the opportunity to own a brand-new property, often at a competitive price. However, the process can be complex, especially for first-time buyers. This guide will walk you through the steps to buy a presale condo in BC, ensuring you make an informed decision.
Understanding Presale Condos
A presale condo is a property purchased directly from a developer before it's fully constructed. Buyer’s purchase based on architectural plans and models, with the promise of a brand-new condo upon completion. This process can take several years, depending on the project's timeline.
Why Buy a Presale Condo?
There are several reasons why buying a presale condo can be advantageous. Firstly, you get a brand-new property, often with the latest amenities and design trends. Secondly, you have the opportunity to customize your unit to your liking. Lastly, there's potential for capital appreciation if the property value increases during the construction period.
Researching the Developer and Project
Before purchasing a presale condo, it's crucial to research the developer and the project. Look into the developer's track record, their reputation, and the quality of their past projects. For the project, consider the location, the amenities, the design, and the projected completion date.
Securing financing for a presale condo can be different from a traditional mortgage. Typically, you'll need to provide a series of deposits throughout the construction period, which can range from 5% to 20% of the purchase price. It's essential to discuss your financing options with a mortgage broker or financial advisor to understand what you can afford.
When buying a presale condo, you'll sign a contract of purchase and sale with the developer. This contract outlines your rights and obligations, including the price, deposit schedule, completion date, and any penalties for backing out. It's recommended to get legal advice or/and talk to an expert realtor.
Navigating the Presale Process
Once you've done your research and decided to proceed with a presale condo purchase, the next step is to navigate the presale process. This typically involves a series of steps, including reserving a unit, signing a contract, making your deposits, and waiting for construction to complete.
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Reserving a Unit
The first step in the presale process is to reserve a unit. This usually involves a small, refundable deposit and gives you the first right of refusal when the developer starts selling units. It's important to note that reserving a unit does not obligate you to purchase it.
Signing a Contract
Once the developer starts selling units, you'll be invited to sign a contract of purchase and sale. This contract outlines the terms of your purchase, including the price, deposit schedule, completion date, and your rights and obligations. It's recommended to have a real estate lawyer review this contract before signing.
Making Your Deposits
After signing the contract, you'll need to make a series of deposits. These are typically staggered throughout the construction period and can range from 5% to 20% of the purchase price. It's important to budget for these deposits and ensure you have the funds available when they're due.
Waiting for Construction to Complete
Once you've made your deposits, the next step is to wait for construction to complete. This can take several years, depending on the project's timeline. During this time, it's important to stay informed about the project's progress and any potential delays.
Once construction is complete, you'll be invited to do a walk-through of your unit and take possession. This is your opportunity to identify any deficiencies or issues that need to be addressed by the developer. Once you're satisfied, you'll finalize your mortgage, pay the remaining balance, and take possession of your new home.
Understanding the Risks
While buying a presale condo can be a great investment, it's not without its risks. These can include construction delays, changes to the project, and the risk of the developer going bankrupt. It's important to understand these risks and consider them in your decision-making process.
Construction delays are a common risk with presale condos. These can be due to a variety of factors, including weather, labor shortages, and supply chain issues. While most contracts allow for a certain amount of delay, significant delays can impact your financing and living arrangements.
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Changes to the Project
Another risk is changes to the project. While the developer is obligated to build the project as outlined in the contract, there may be minor changes or substitutions. It's important to review your contract and understand what changes are allowed.
1. What happens if the developer delays the completion date?
The contract of purchase and sale should outline what happens in the event of a delay. In most cases, the developer will provide a new completion date. However, if the delay is significant, you may have the right to cancel the contract and get your deposit back.
2. Can I sell my presale condo before it's completed?
Yes, this is known as "assigning" your contract. However, not all developers allow this, and there may be fees involved. It's important to check your contract or consult with a real estate lawyer. Remember that any assigning should be approved by Developer.
3. What if I can't secure a mortgage when the condo is completed?
If you can't secure a mortgage upon completion, you risk losing your deposit and could be liable for any losses the developer incurs if they have to resell the unit. Discussing your financing options with a mortgage broker or financial advisor before purchasing a presale condo is crucial.
Buying a presale condo in BC can be a great investment, but it's not without its risks. You can confidently navigate this process by understanding the process, researching the developer and project, securing your financing, and consulting with a real estate lawyer. Remember, the key to a successful presale condo purchase is informed decision-making.