Associated Costs for Buyers

A1. Down Payment:

A mortgage down payment is the amount of money you pay up front when purchasing a home. A deposit that is applied toward your down payment is required when you make the offer to purchase. Your down payment must be at least 5% of the purchase price for under $500k. For properties with a purchase price between $500k – $1 million, the minimum down payment jumps to 10%. For mortgages over $1 million the minimum down payment starts at 20% of the purchase price. If you are looking to spend over $1.2 million you should speak to your lender as the down payment will vary depending on the lending institution’s guidelines.

A2. Mortgage Default Insurance:

There are three main mortgage insurers in Canada, with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) the most recognizable. Mortgage default insurance is mandatory in Canada for down payments of less than 20%. Although default insurance protects lenders, it allows Canadians access into the real estate market with a smaller down payment. Keep in mind, any PST on your mortgage default insurance is due on closing. Use the Mortgage Payment Calculator to see the difference for insurance at 5%, 10%, 15%, and 20%.

A3. Land Transfer Tax:

Calculated as a percentage of property value, these taxes are due on closing. Based on the purchase price of the property, the tax rate will vary per province, but keep in mind that Toronto homebuyers incur an additional municipal tax. The city also offers land transfer tax rebates for first-time homebuyers. Use the Land Transfer Tax Calculator to see the exact amount you need to prepare.

A4. Legal Fees + Disbursements:

Legal fees can range in cost but expect approximately $1500-2500 + HST. These costs account for the status certificate review, the preparation of legal documents, disbursements, and title insurance and registration. Title insurance costs will be the major variant here and will increase with the price of the property. When your lawyer closes your deal, they will charge you back for a variety of expenses incurred. Such costs include fees for registering the deed and mortgage, building and tax certificates, hydro and water status reports etc.

A5. Statement of Adjustments:

Compiled by your lawyer, this statement outlines any expenses you must re-pay the seller for maintenance, property taxes or utilities (if applicable).

A6. Moving Costs:

Moving costs vary depending upon the distance moved and the amount of possessions moved. Get multiple estimates prior to booking your mover.


B1. Discharge Penalties:

If you are selling a property to buy a new one, and if your own property has not yet been paid off 100%, there may be penalties charged by your lender.

B2. Property Inspection Report / Termite Inspection Report:

It is recommended that you include a condition in your Offer to Purchase for a home inspection, to compile a report on the condition of the home. Depending on the complexities of the inspection this cost can vary but expect around $500. Also, it may be useful to have it inspected by a qualified termite inspector (area depending). The cost will be approximately $250 and up depending on the size of the property.

B3. Survey / Title Insurance:

You may want a new survey for your property. They generally start at about $1,000. The price goes up depending on the size and configuration of the property. Most mortgage lenders are prepared to accept title insurance instead of a survey. A Title Insurance policy costs about $400 for most residential properties.

B4. Non-Resident Speculation Tax:

The NRST is a 15% tax on the purchase or acquisition of an interest in residential property located in the Greater Golden Horseshoe Region (GGH) by individuals who are not citizens or permanent residents of Canada or by foreign corporations (foreign entities) and taxable trustees. See details here: https://www.fin.gov.on.ca/en/bulletins/nrst