Published: March 05, 2010 7:00 AM
With so many diverse factors to take into consideration when buying a new home, it is no surprise that first-time home buyers need a little help de-mystifying the process.
What location is preferable? What type of home is best matched to current needs and financial resources? What are the mortgage options? Will interest rates rise by summer? How about legal considerations and closing costs? How will the federal government’s new mortgage qualifying rules and upcoming Harmonized Sales Tax affect buyers? What is involved with buying a pre-sale condo? What are the benefits of builder licensing and mandatory home warranties?
These and other key questions will be answered by a panel of housing experts at the 16th annual Seminar for First-time Home Buyers, presented by the Greater Vancouver Home Builders' Association (GVHBA) on Tuesday, March 23 from 7-9 p.m. in the Sheraton Vancouver Guildford Hotel, 15269 104 Ave.
Admission to the popular seminar is free thanks to the generosity of this year’s presenting sponsor, the provincial Homeowner Protection Office, and corporate sponsors Canada Mortgage & Housing Corporation, Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, Genworth Financial Canada, TD Canada Trust, Travelers Guarantee, Sheraton Vancouver Guildford Hotel, Shaw Cablesystems, CKNW, Rock 101, AM 730 and 99.3 the FOX.
Speakers are Robyn Adamache, senior market analyst, Canada Mortgage & Housing Corporation; Bob Maling, chief operating officer, Homeowner Protection Office; Narrinder Dhanoya-Bhangu, vice-president, Pacific region, Genworth Financial Canada; Harsha Galgewela, manager, mobile mortgage specialist division, TD Canada Trust; Dave Watt, past president, Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver; Howard Friedman, national vice president of residential real estate products, Travelers Guarantee; and Adnan Habib, lawyer, Baker Newby LLP.
"Our experts will help first-time buyers complete their homework by investigating all available options and issues before they take that crucial first step onto the property ladder," said Peter Simpson, CEO of the GVHBA.
"More than 900 people registered for last year’s seminar and, because real estate is still a hot topic, we expect a similar attendance this year. Doors open at 6 p.m., allowing attendees ample time to view displays of new homes and other housing-related products and services," he said.
Pre-registration is required. Register online at www.gvhba.org or call 778-565-4288 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday. Registrations will also be accepted via voice mail during off hours. The hotel has waived parking fees for this event, and public transit is right at the door.
Although the seminar is free, attendees are asked to bring a food item for the Surrey Food Bank.