The hidden costs of buying a home: Part 1

by REP19 Mar 2014

Many first-time home buyers believe that once they have saved their minimum down payment and pre-qualified for the home of their dreams, they are ready to jump into the world of home ownership.

All too many times however, Realtors see individuals who have missed saving for some critical costs associated with the purchase of any property such as legal fees, land transfer taxes, appraisal costs, HST on the purchase price of a new home, as well as HST CMHC premiums.

Lena Guirguis explores the costs of land transfer taxes in Toronto, as well as available tax rebates for the first time home buyer.

When purchasing a home in Toronto it is important to note that not only will your client be paying the provincial land transfer tax, but also the Toronto land transfer tax, and these amounts vary depending on the purchase price of the home.

Land transfer taxes are paid at the time of closing by the lawyer and these amounts will need to be included with your client’s down payment in order to complete the transaction. While it may not seem like a major concern when you first think about it, when you consider that the average cost of a home in the GTA is currently $520,000, this would result in a $13,000 surprise for the buyer who hasn’t planned.

In addition to planning for land transfer taxes with the use of calculators available like the one found at, it is important for your client, the first time home buyer, to remember that there are also land transfer tax rebates available. The provincial land transfer tax rebate is available up to a maximum of $2,000, and the Toronto land transfer tax rebate is available up to $3,725.

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