The Costs of Closing on a Home

familylendingFinancial Tips, First Time Home Owner, General Interest, Household Budget, Housing Costs, Mortgage Down Payment, Residential Mortgages

Did you know that in addition to the downpayment and mortgage, you’re also responsible for any miscellaneous closing costs associated with your home purchase? These fees can vary in price, but all must be paid prior to taking possession of your home. If you’re currently in the market for a new home, now’s the time to consider these hidden costs so that you can incorporate any additional expenses into your budget.

 Eight Closing Costs to Keep an Eye On

1) Appraisal Fee
Your mortgage lender or mortgage default insurer may require you to provide a property appraisal prior to lending you mortgage monies. This appraisal will determine whether the selling price of your new home is reasonable based on current market conditions. Home appraisals can cost anywhere from $300 to $500, depending on where in Canada you’re purchasing the property.

 2) Sales Tax
If you’re planning to purchase a newly constructed home, or a home that has been substantially renovated, make sure you remember to factor in the HST or GST on top of the list price. Resale homes are not taxable. Luckily, most provinces have HST/GST rebates in place to help first-time home buyers recover some of these costs.

3) Home Inspection Fee
If you’re making an offer on a home, make sure that it’s conditional on the findings of a professional home inspector. Hiring an inspector is voluntary, but highly recommended. An inspection will help uncover any unexpected (and costly!) issues with your potential new home. Home inspections costs between $300 and $500.

4) Property Insurance
Property and content insurance protects your home and possessions against fire, theft, and weather-related damage. Insurance payments, like your mortgage payments, are ongoing so it’s crucial that you keep this cost in mind when building your budget.

5) Land Transfer Tax
The land transfer tax is based on the amount of money you paid for the land. What’s more, municipalities impose a yearly tax on land within their municipal boundaries.

6) Legal Costs
There are a number of legalities that you’ll need to cover when closing on your home. This could include notary services for conducting a title search, registration fees, and the preparation of your mortgage. These fees are normally well over $500, depending on the lawyer you hire.

7) Mortgage Life Insurance
This special type of insurance is separate from your property insurance and your mortgage payments. It is put in place to cover the cost of your mortgage in the event of death or severe illness.

8) Mortgage Default Insurance
If you’ve qualified for a high-ratio mortgage, (this is normally the case for home buyers with less than a 20% downpayment), chances are good that you’ll require mortgage default insurance from your lender. The cost is usually added onto your monthly mortgage payment and rates range from 1% to 3.25%.

Start building your home buying budget today. Consult with a mortgage broker to learn more about these and other unexpected closing costs.

Chantielle Kennedy writer for

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