Buying a home is a huge commitment, and likely the most expensive purchase you will ever make. The first financial cost you can expect is the down payment. A down payment is the amount of money put towards the purchase of a home, which represents a part of the total payment often covered by a mortgage loan.

How much is a down payment?


In Canada, the down payment amount depends on the price of the home. The minimum down payment is 5% on the first $500,000 of the home price and 10% on any portion exceeding $500,000, up to $1 million. Homes priced above $1 million require a minimum 20% down.


The more you can put for your down payment the better. Benefits of a bigger down payment include lower monthly mortgage payments, paying less interest over time, and with 20% down or more you don't have to buy default insurance.


How to save for a down payment


Before you even start looking at homes, come up with an ideal home value that you can afford. Calculate the percentage of the total home value that you can expect to pay and start a savings account strictly for the down payment. 


Create a timeline based off your current financial situation to determine how much you can afford to save, and how long it will take to build your savings.


To help ease the blow of saving such a large sum of money, cut out unnecessary costs such as take out food, vacations, and impulse buying. Put any cash bonuses, government credits and birthday money into your savings to reach your goals sooner.


There are also government programs designed to help ease the financial burden of first time buyers. Be sure to check out the First Time Home Buyer Incentive and Home Buyers Plan to see how they can benefit you.



I wish you luck in your home buying journey! Don't hesitate to reach out if you have any home buying/selling questions in the Toronto area.


As technology evolves and improves over time, online home listings get more sophisticated. Now more than ever, viewing a home online has become necessary as new rules and regulations encourage social distancing. But finding your dream home online without seeing it in person can be a challenge.


Here are the top 3 things to take into consideration when viewing a home virtually.

Virtual Tours


If a physical walk through isn't an option, then a virtual tour can be a great alternative. This will give you an opportunity to get a better feel for the home, and explore the floor plan and layout without having to actually set foot on the property.


Some realtors even offer virtual showings, where they visit the property on your behalf and give you a personal tour through live video. This is a great chance for you to ask questions and get a professional perspective on your potential home.


Professional Photography


Most Realtors work with photographers to take professional photos of their listings. These photos showcase the home at its finest, highlighting key areas which can be helpful in deciding whether or not the home meets your needs. It’s also a great way to keep track of the listings you’ve viewed and their unique features.


Each photo tells a story of the home, so be sure to take a detailed look at each one. Allow yourself to mentally place furniture where you think it would look best. Using a combination of the photos and floor plans is the best way to accurately plan each room of the house.

Outdoor Living Space


One thing that is often overlooked when viewing a home online is the outdoor space. Whether it is a full backyard or a small balcony, outdoor space is definitely something to try and get a feel for when viewing a home virtually.


Take into account what type of furniture you may need and what sort of maintenance will be involved in the upkeep of the outdoor space. This space may become your escape from self isolation in a time of need!

3D Home Tours


Advancements in recent technology have also allowed for 3D virtual tours, where you can navigate each room of a home with a 360 degree view online. This provides more flexibility and freedom to examine every square inch of the property without physically being there.


Although 3D virtual tours are not as common due to their time to make and high costs, they are becoming increasingly popular as more home buyers are viewing properties from the comfort of their home. Be sure to take advantage of 3D tours any chance you get!


Working from home has become increasingly popular over the last few years. But it does come with its own set of challenges. Here are 4 upgrades to help keep you focused and productive all day long.


Add A Second Monitor


For most people, a laptop or desktop screen isn't enough. Adding a second monitor will help you multitask more efficiently when working on more than one project. Be sure to get a monitor that is the same or similar size to your current screen for consistency.


Choose An Ergonomic Chair


Since you will be spending the majority of your time in a chair, you’ll want to find one that is comfortable and supportive. If you don’t have a good office chair, you’ll be more likely to suffer from body pain, back pain and headaches.


Clean Your Desk Clutter


A cluttered desk creates a cluttered mind. Keeping your space clear of clutter will improve your productivity and provide you with plenty of room if you need to jot down notes in a notebook or have a quick snack. The more clutter you have, the harder it will be to clean.


Use Natural Light


Working from home requires you to be indoors most of the time. If your home office setup is dimly lit or too harshly lit, it can lead to eyestrain, stress, and fatigue. Be sure to set up your desk near a window or somewhere that has plenty of natural light.



Owning a home is a great way to build financial security and equity. While renting gives you the freedom to move when you want, owning a home has many benefits that you can’t get from renting. Here are 4 signs that you’re ready to buy a house.


You Have Good Credit


Low credit scores are one of the most common reasons that renters don't buy a home. But, if your credit is good, then it is likely you will be approved for a mortgage. The better your credit score, the better rate you will get on your mortgage. So start building it now if you haven't already.


You Have A Down Payment


A down payment is absolutely necessary when buying a home. You will need a minimum of 5%, but the larger your down payment is the more you will save over the lifetime of your mortgage. Even if you've saved a down payment for your ideal home, you still need to consider additional costs such as closing costs, land transfer tax, etc.


Your Rent Is Increasing


Rent is continuously increasing in the Toronto area, which makes it difficult to budget and pay your bills over the long term. Owning a home builds equity, and the monthly costs can be cheaper in many cases, even with the extra expenses like property tax and maintenance.


Your Lifestyle Can Support It


You want to make sure you have strong job stability when you are deciding to own a home. Since you can’t just move out whenever you want, it is important to know you have the cash to pay your mortgage every month. You also want to make sure you are stable in your relationship, if you are planning to buy a home with your partner.