Take a panoramic view when buying your new home

As you choose your next place to live it’s important to see what is going on around you. You may be concentrating on selecting the perfect floor plan, the right finishes and whether or not to purchase upgrades, but today, new neighbourhoods offer so much more than just a house or condominium to go home to.

Many communities are built with a very specific buyer in mind and can come with special conveniences or facilities. For example, a development catering to young families might have a brand new school, parks, or even a new community centre with a swimming pool. It may appear that these extras are the choice of the developer, but in fact, the municipality usually makes them a condition of approval.

So the perfect neighbourhood for you and your family may be breaking ground right now. Some of the important questions to get answered beyond floor plans, like how long you may have to wait to enjoy it all, include:

What isn’t part of the picture?

One thing not normally included in a builder’s model of a new community is the parking bylaws. The local municipality office will have information about this for your street and the streets around you. This is important if the availability of street parking is important to you.

Your local and provincial levels of government will also have more information on what will be built around you. The municipality signs off on any future development plans for the community so you will be able to see if there is intensification planning in anticipation of population growth. This could mean the green spaces around you now may be developed into more houses or condominiums, schools, or commercial buildings.

How long do I have to wait?

For condominium living, new construction projects may be sold with plans for indoor or outdoor pools, a lounge, and perhaps a putting green or tennis court.

However, you may have to wait some time before everything is completed. In fact, you may be living in a construction zone when you first move in. Under Ontario’s new home warranty program, there is compensation for delays when it comes to your unit, but there is no warranty protection for delays in the completion of the common elements. So although your condominium unit may be ready, the common elements such as the lobby, hallways and any other amenities like a gym or pool room may still be under construction for a period of time after you take possession of your unit.

Another important part of the new home buying process is the warranty protection that is provided by your builder and backed by Tarion. If you’re in the market for a brand new home read up on the warranty protection at Tarion.com. – NC

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