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Another BORING article about mortgage costs? Yes. And I’ll tell you why. If you don’t know the basics then you won’t be ready when you walk into your dream home. Period.

If your home is the most expensive thing you ever buy, isn’t it worth 5 minutes to read this?

Home Inspection

This is to your discretion. An inspector will look for items that could affect the price & desirability of the home. This fee is payable by you to the inspector and will vary but I’d budget $500.


An appraisal may be required to determine the security value of your home for the lender if you have 20% or more down payment. This fee is payable by you and I’d budget $300 and up depending on the location & nature of the property.


Due upon the acceptance or subject removal of your purchase offer. It is a gesture of good faith from you as the buyer to the seller and will form part of your down payment at closing.

Mortgage Loan Insurance

Mandatory if you put less than 20% as a down payment and depending on the details of your application. This is administered through one of three insurers in Canada: CMHC, Genworth or Canada Guaranty. Click each for links to the cost that can be paid or added to the mortgage.

Legal Fees

A lawyer is vital to any home deal. They handle all legal documentation, mediate with the sellers attorney, transfer of land title and more. Cost is payable by you to the lawyer and will vary but I’d budget $1500.

Property Transfer Tax

Other than the price of your home this is the second biggest bill you will pay. The tax is 1% on the first $100,000 of your purchase price and 2% on the balance. You may be eligible for an exemption from the Government. Click here to review or contact your lawyer.

Title Insurance

This protects you from any negative revelations about your property’s history that might crop in the future.  Unless a land survey is ordered it is difficult to ascertain a comprehensive history of the property. In order to deal with any potential errors or omissions in the public registry or secret heirs to the land most lenders now require title insurance. This fee is payable by you through the lawyer at closing and I’d budget $500.

Home Insurance

The lender will require you hold fire insurance on your property effective on possession.   This fee is payable by you on the effective date and will vary depending on the provider.

Prepaid Bills

The seller may be entitled to a reimbursement from you if they have prepaid bills: water, gas, hydro, property tax & strata. Your lawyer will determine these amounts and advise you.

Moving Expenses

I’m too old to move myself. I’d highly recommend a mover. Call me if you would like a referral. I had packers AND movers once…that was glorious but very expensive!

Service & Activation Fees

Some service providers will charge you an activation fee for utilities such as phone, cable, gas & electricity. If you are a client in good standing ask for them to waive this.

Mail Forwarding

If you receive important & confidential mail to your existing home consider Canada Post mail forwarding service. Peace of mind is priceless.

It all sounds scary. It is. But I’ve done it three times myself and for many clients in the last 16 years. You just need a professional by your side to help you. Enter ME & my team of trusted partners. Call me today to get started!