BuyingHomeownershipHomeownership May 1, 2024

Beyond the Down Payment: Understanding the Full Cost of Buying a Home in Saskatchewan

Buying a home in Saskatchewan is an exciting venture, but it’s important to be aware of the additional costs beyond the down payment. These hidden expenses can impact your budget significantly, so it’s essential to plan for them. Here’s a breakdown of the various costs associated with buying a home in this beautiful province:

1. Legal Fees
When purchasing a home, you’ll need a lawyer to complete your real estate transaction. Legal fees in Saskatchewan typically range from $1,000 to $2,500, depending on the complexity of the purchase and the lawyer’s rates. These fees cover the cost of preparing and reviewing purchase documents, completing the title transfer, and ensuring that all legal requirements are met.

2. Land Title Transfer (ISC Fees)
The Information Services Corporation (ISC) of Saskatchewan handles the registration of land titles. When you buy a home, you must pay a fee to transfer the property’s title from the seller to yourself. ISC fees are calculated based on the property’s purchase price and can range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars.

3. Home Insurance
Home insurance is essential to protect your new investment. It covers the building, your belongings, and liability in case someone is injured on your property. The cost of home insurance varies widely based on the value of the property, the contents inside, and the level of coverage you choose. Typically, homeowners in Saskatchewan might expect to pay anywhere from $800 to $2,000 annually.

4. Property Tax Adjustments
You may also need to reimburse the seller for any prepaid property taxes. This cost varies depending on the property tax rate in your municipality and the timing of your purchase. Property taxes are generally calculated based on the assessed property value and are used to fund local services and infrastructure.

5. Mortgage Insurance
If your down payment is less than 20% of the home’s purchase price, you’ll need to purchase mortgage default insurance. This protects the lender in case you default on your loan. The premium for this insurance is usually added to your mortgage amount and paid over the life of the loan. Premiums vary based on the amount borrowed and the size of your down payment.

6. Moving Costs
Moving costs can vary greatly depending on the distance of your move and whether you hire professional movers or decide to move yourself. For a local move, hiring movers in Saskatchewan can cost between $800 and $2,200. If you’re moving from another province, the costs can be significantly higher.

7. Home Inspection and Appraisal Fees
Before finalizing your home purchase, it’s advisable to have a home inspection, which can cost anywhere from $300 to $600. This helps identify any issues with the home’s structure and systems. An appraisal, required by most lenders to confirm the home’s value, typically costs between $300 and $500.

While the dream of homeownership is certainly exciting, it’s important to budget for these additional costs. By being prepared, you can ensure a smoother transaction and avoid any unpleasant financial surprises. If you have questions or need assistance navigating the home-buying process in Saskatchewan, don’t hesitate to contact a local real estate professional.