A resale house is your much safer alternative to buying from a|
builder. It's because you will be able to examine it before buying.
This buying option can be a smooth and satisfying affair provided
your lawyer and home inspector do a good job.
Benefits of Buying Resale
Less Risk - What you see is what you get, and you can inspect the house before making your purchase.
Predictable Environment - You can easily estimate traffic and noise level around the house and find out where schools, parks and other facilities are.
Improvements - You may get some nice upgrades like finished basement, wooden floors or swimming pool. Extra features give second hand homes the character and increase their resale value.
Known Neighbours - There should be no surprises. You can ask your vendor about people you will wind up living beside, and you can actually meet them.
Landscape - Most likely you will have the landscape that is already taken care of, with trees and lawns already around.
Fixed Closing - Deals on newly built homes typically contain a clause regarding construction delays and labour disputes. There isn't such a worry when you buy a resale house.
GST Savings - Sales of resale homes are usually exempt from GST.
In some cases sales tax may apply. There are important considerations involving owner-built home, substantial renovation or using the property for business. Taxation rules for such homes are complex and often changing, and it is essential to seek professional advice before you sell.
Drawbacks of Buying Resale
Energy Cost - Older houses are less energy efficient. You may have to spend more money on heating or invest in extra insulation.
Redecorating - Resale house does not give you a choice of colours and finishing. Be prepared to spend some money on repainting when you don't like what you see.
Renovation - Minor renovations may be necessary due to previous wear.
Functionality - Older homes have often smaller kitchens or living space, and less functional layout.
Upgrades - Some changes in or around the house may be required to accommodate your needs.
How to save on renovation
Natural Resources Canada developed ecoENERGY Retrofit program to help homeowners with energy-saving upgrades.
For a fee, a qualified energy advisor can evaluate energy efficiency of your house and make recommendations.
The federal government may provide financial assistance to implement them.
You may qualify for a partial GST tax rebate on labour and materials if you hire someone to :
substantially renovate your home
convert a non-residential building for residential use
build a major addition to your home
When you do the work yourself you may qualify for a GST tax rebate on materials.
Rules on rebates are complex and you should first consult Revenue Canada about your particular case.