Real Estate Talk:
Purchase process in 2021

Searching for a property with a broker and the step by step purchase process

By Joseph Marovitch

Updated January 6, 2021

In the year 2021, the world has become a much more dangerous place. There are now four strains of a constantly mutating virus. With almost two million fatalities worldwide, there are still too many who do not comprehend the severity of the situation, and in some cases, do not believe the pandemic is real. Therefore, these skeptics continue to go about their daily lives without masks, social distancing, or other precautions. These are the people who perpetuate the continuation of this pandemic and infringe on the lives of everyone.

This being the case, protocols are in place the ensure the safety of the public in all aspects of real estate. The following is the purchase process in 2021 with government protocols that are supposed to be adhered to by all real estate brokers.

If you are buying a property for the first time, it can be an overwhelming endeavour. There are questions such as where do I start? Where do I look? Should I use a broker or do this alone? How do I arrange financing? What if the house has problems? Am I paying a fair price? Will I get my money back when I sell, and the list goes on and on.

Buying a property for the first time can be an overwhelming endeavour. There are questions such as where do I start? Where do I look? Should I use a broker or do this alone?… And the list goes on and on.

To provide a better understanding of the real estate process and all that is entailed, we will provide a series of articles that include topics such as the purchase process, the selling process, the pre-approval process, inspection, financing, cash or mortgage, marketing process, income property, buying with or without warranty, purchasing a second home and other issues. You can also contact me anytime for questions about topics presented, or any other real estate issues.

In this article the first topic addressed is searching for a property with a broker. You can search online or through ads in the local newspapers, however, this is a time-consuming process and much effort can be wasted. An experienced broker does not cost you and can narrow your search to specific criteria such as location, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, style and price range.

The first step is to meet via Zoom, Teams, or any other online service, several referred brokers and find chemistry, integrity and trust. In a meeting, you will determine if the broker appears informed, professional and trustworthy.

Questions to ask include:

  • How long have you been a broker?
  • Have you purchased many homes?
  • How do we finance?
  • Can you recommend a mortgage broker?
  • Can you recommend an inspector?
  • Can you recommend a notary?

These are not complicated questions but you want to detect knowledge, patience, integrity, professionalism, the ability to negotiate, and commitment to you… and not just a sale. If your gut feeling is positive, then use the broker. If not, go to the next broker.

The wrong broker to buy or sell a property can lead to legal issues and plenty of frustration. The broker should ask you several questions as well, to determine and create a foundation of trust. After all, you will be working together intensely for a time.

‘The wrong broker to buy or sell a property can lead to legal issues and plenty of frustration.’

The following is the purchase process step by step:

Meet via computer, or under strict conditions of distancing, masks, and a well-ventilated location, to determine:

  • Type of property – residential, detached, semi detached, condo
  • Number of bedrooms
  • Number of bathrooms
  • Parking or garage or both
  • Location
  • Price range
  • Style: old, new, concrete, wood, brick, stone
  • Financing: mortgage or cash? (Require or arrange pre-approval of proof of cash.)

The process

  • The broker searches and reviews listings based on criteria provided by buyer.
  • The broker emails listing and virtual tour to the buyer to review.
  • If buyer finds any listings to be of interest, buyer informs broker.
  • The broker arranges visits following strict protocols including:
    – Vacating the resident for the duration of the visit.
    – All visitors wear a mask and disinfect.
    – Only one visitor with a broker enters at a time.
    – Visitors touch as little as possible.
    – The broker disinfects all touched items before completing the visit, including door handles, drawers.
  • The broker checks for liens, mortgages, registered rights, etc.
  • The broker compares property to other comparable sold property.
  • Using all the previous information, the broker determines the best price possible, with the buyer.
  • The broker prepares promise to purchase with price and conditions.
  • The broker prepares counteroffer if required.

Once an offer is accepted:

  • The broker ensures all required documents are provided to designated notary.
  • The broker ensures financing is arranged with bank evaluations.
  • The broker ensures inspection deadlines.
  • The broker handles miscellaneous problems: certificates, loans, servitudes, non-conformities, septic, well, weeping field, etc
  • The broker arranges the signing

Should you have questions or comments, please refer to the comments section at the bottom of the page. As well, to view past articles, click here.

Next article: The financing process: Pre-approval or proof of cash

Have a great week!

State of the market

Quebec may enter a prolonged three-week lockdown with an 8 pm curfew, commencing on Saturday, January 9, 2021. Only essential services will be permitted to operate. Real estate brokerage is considered an essential service. Brokers will be permitted to operate via virtual meetings and signings. Visits to properties will be permitted but with strict protocols.

According to the Quebec Professional Association of Real Estate Brokers (QPAREB), property sales in the suburbs and off-island have increased significantly, however, listings of condos in the downtown core have increased way beyond demand. As the pandemic worsens, demand for property away from populated areas increases. Singles homes in areas such as Westmount, NDG, Montreal West and Outremont continue to be in demand.

‘If selling is an option, now would be a good time to sell with a late possession date and acquire a low-interest rate pre-approval for the longest period possible.’

The past six months have been a seller’s market with low inventory, low-interest rates and high demand. In 2021, as vaccines roll out, we may see increased inventory and interest rates, as the market makes its way toward a buyer’s market. If selling is an option, now would be a good time to sell with a late possession date and acquire a low-interest rate pre-approval for the longest period possible. This strategy will allow selling for the highest price possible in a seller’s market and purchasing for the lowest price as inventory increases in a buyer’s market.

Have a great week and stay safe!

Let’s not forget that people with cancer are vulnerable too!

You are invited to keep giving to the following organizations since it’s now more important than ever to support cancer research! Click on the logos below to find out how:

logo Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada -

Cancer Research Society

Feature image: Andrew Burlone
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Other articles by Joseph Marovitch

Joseph Marovitch -

Joseph Marovitch has worked in the service industry for over 30 years. His first career was working with families from Westmount and surrounding areas, hosting children between the ages of 6 to 16 as the owner and director of Camp Maromac, a sports and arts sleep away summer camp established in 1968. Using the same strengths caring for the families, such as reliability, integrity, honesty and a deep sense of protecting the interests of those he is responsible for, Joseph applies this to his present real estate broker career. Should you have questions please feel free to contact Joseph Marovitch at 514 825-8771, or

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