Ontarian are heavily invested in real estate. It’s a lucrative investment option that offers great returns. Real estate has long been one of the most popular and sought-after forms of investment in Ontario.

Across GTA, money-savvy millennials are taking the plunge into homeownership, knowing that it’s one of the best long-term investments they can make.

For many Ontarians, buying a house is a dream scenario. Not only does owning a home allow you to build wealth, but it also gives you more control over your living circumstances compared to renting.

But the cost, responsibility and hard work that comes with being a homeowner isn’t for everybody. Before buying a house, you’ll need to take these steps to help you decide if you — and your finances — are ready.

1. Choose a real estate agent that’s right for you.
A home is a huge investment, so work with a realtor that’s knowledgeable, professional and responsive. Treat your search for the right agent like a job interview. Meet with a few different agents, ask lots of questions and check references.

2. Decide if home ownership is right for you
In a real estate-obsessed country like GTA, it’s easy to feel pressured to buy a house. But homeownership isn’t a shortcut to a worry-free future. It’s a lot like having children: It changes your lifestyle completely, requires daily sacrifices and can keep you up late at night worrying about the future. Oh yeah, it’s also really expensive.

3. Get your finances in strong shape
Because you’ll likely be paying for your home with a mortgage, you need to get your finances in good enough shape that lenders will be comfortable signing off on your home loan.

4. Start your property search
Now that you have all of your finances settled, you can start looking for homes.You want to find a real estate agent since they’ll be able to guide you through the home buying process from start to finish. This is the exciting part of the home buying process – when you can start perusing the Canadian Multiple Listing Service (MLS) site in earnest.

6. Evaluate The Conditions And Provide The Deposit
Whether it’s the payment and agreement conditions to the quality check conditions and home inspections of your potential new home, ensure everything is laid out and clear. In this case, your real estate agent or lawyer may help evaluate and advise on anything that needs to be clarified.

7. Sign The Deal
If you’re happy with everything, it is time to sign the deal! If financial obligations and conditions or any other requirements are met, this should go smoothly and you’re on your way to becoming a new homeowner!