| Buying

Now that buyers have more of an upper hand in the Toronto real estate market, you can stand to be a little pickier in your house hunt. Instead of compromising on almost all items on your must-have list, you can take your time and find the home that triggers all those positive feels. 

We like to think finding a home is like finding your true love – or “the one.” As your real estate agents, we’re like the matchmakers, looking for that perfect fit. Here we share 10 signs you’ve found “the one” with tips to make it yours. 

1. Your Heart Skips a Beat the Moment You See It

Love at first sight does exist – at least for home buyers. If your heart skips a beat the moment you see the house, chances are this could be the one. Curb appeal says a lot, so if you picture the house lit up at night, a holiday wreath hung on the door, or your grandmother’s wicker furniture sitting on the front porch, well, congrats, you probably found the one.

2. You Feel Jealous Thinking About Other Buyers

This is a perfect example of how the symptoms experienced when falling in love are close to what you’ll experience when finding the right home. If you get antsy at the thought of other buyers feeling the same way as you when they view the home, you’ve likely developed undeniable feelings, and you’ll want to make it yours. 

3. You Make Excuses About Its Flaws

If you’re making excuses for flaws that seemed like glaring red flags in other homes you’ve viewed, you’re definitely crushing on this place. However, a word of warning: Listen to your real estate agent if they seem concerned about the flaws or that the home’s staging could be the reason you’re falling for the place. 

For example, if you step into the backyard and realize the GO train tracks are right there, you might be like, “Oh, it doesn’t run that frequently.” Meanwhile, your real estate agent is frantically waving the schedule in your face, showing you that it actually runs every 15 minutes — starting at 5 am. In this case, you need to snap out of it!

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4. It’s in the Neighbourhood of All Neighbourhoods

Location counts, so if you find the exact mid-century modern ranch house you’ve always wanted, but it’s over an hour’s drive to work, that’s a problem. When your heart’s aflutter over a home miles from everything, you need to shake yourself and consider how that inconvenience will impact your life for years. 

However, if it happens to be in the exact neighbourhood with all the amenities, transportation, restaurants, or schools you need, it is definitely the one. Working with a real estate agent who only shows you homes in the areas that suit your budget, needs, and lifestyle avoids buying a home akin to a long-distance relationship. 

5. You See the Kitchen and Bathroom Aren’t Dream City, and You’re Okay With It

We’ve seen how that look of joy fades when someone steps into what seems like the perfect home only to discover an icky kitchen or bathroom. This is the real thing if you’re still aglow with positive feelings when the bathroom and kitchen aren’t right out of Architectural Digest. If you can imagine the aroma of your favourite meal wafting from the kitchen and don’t get turned off by the thought of taking a bath in the tub, we say good on yah. Just make sure you have a home inspection to identify potential issues with plumbing and electricity! 

6. You’re Mentally Measuring the Room for Your Furniture

Picturing yourself living in the space is a sure sign you’re considering putting in an offer. When you’re trying to figure out if your new couch will fit in the living room and whether your king-size mattress will fit up the stairs, you’re falling hard.

7. You Can Check, Check, and Check Off All Your Must-Haves

Despite emotional reactions, once you come back down to earth, if you can check off all your must-haves or are fine with giving up a few, this home is the one.

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8. Suddenly, Other Homes You’ve Considered Seem Like Dumps

If you have a “what was I thinking” moment as you view the home, this is a sure sign you’ve found the one. We’ve seen how buyers change their minds about properties they’re considering because they’ve finally seen what the real thing looks like. So, when you’re measuring all other homes against this home, you’re smitten.

9. You Feel an Overwhelming Sense of Gratitude It’s Finally Happening to You

If you’ve been looking for a while and suddenly feel completely overwhelmed with emotion realizing it’s finally happening to you, it means it’s love. 

10. You’re Ready to Make a Commitment

Knowing you’re ready to make a commitment and put in an offer ASAP is the final sure sign that you’ve found the one. 

Strategies to Make Sure You Secure The One

Once you and your agent feel comfortable that this is the one, you’ll want a strategy to make it yours. We’ve seen a lot of buyers anxious to put in an offer above asking out of fear of losing the home. But this isn’t necessary when sellers aren’t in the driver’s seat. You want your offer to ensure you won’t overpay but also make the seller feel more than happy to say yes. 

Your strategy needs to: 

Reduce contingencies without putting you at risk

Sellers don’t want to be bothered with contingencies, but at the same time, they’re included to protect you. So, make sure the contingencies you overlook are favourable to the seller, such as getting mortgage preapproval, so the sale isn’t contingent on financing but also don’t present risks for you, such as waiving the inspection. 

Woo sellers with a personal letter

This might sound cheesy, but a lot of buyers want to know their home will be loved and well cared for. If you include a letter telling them a bit about yourself, how much you love certain characteristics of the home, your plans to raise a family, or your history with the street or neighbourhood, your offer is more persuasive than someone who plans to transform the house into rental units. It also helps soften the blow of any contingencies you include in the offer. 

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Include a knowledgeable real estate agent

A real estate agent’s job is to save you money whenever possible without putting you at risk of losing the one. As your agent, our strategy includes:

  • Using our years of experience to feel out the seller’s agent to understand how their clients will respond to offers below asking. 
  • Using our knowledge of the current market to target the most realistic price you should pay.
  • Considering the seller’s asking price to help understand where their heads are at. 
  • Understanding the market and foreseeing potential challenges from the seller’s standpoint, such as selling their home in the current market at their asking price. 
  • Comparing how long the house has been on the market to the average days on market to predict how desperate they might be to find a buyer. 
  • Understanding money is not the only consideration, and bringing our offer from a place of respect to ensure we don’t offend the seller.
  • Remaining completely transparent with negotiation best practices that are honest and professional.  

Finding the one is a significant moment in your life. Just like finding the person you want to spend the rest of your life with, your first impressions of your perfect home should drum up true feels that go beyond a crush. It needs to be true love!

If you’re looking for the best Toronto real estate team to help you find THE ONE, and make it yours, call The Christine Cowern Team at 416.291.7372 or email us at hello@christinecowern.com. We’d love to work with you!