UK Buyers

Buyer Moving to Canada?

Are you thinking of emigrating from the UK to British Columbia, Canada? The Bo Knows Homes Team has considerable experience in assisting UK buyers in relocating to the OKanagan Valley and this page is designed to help you understand the services we provide.

Here are several important facts you may wish to know about purchasing Real Estate in BC.

Buying Real Estate:

There are huge differences in the process of buying Real Estate in BC, compared to buying Real Estate in the UK. In general, the process is much more professional and your interests are much better looked after than in the UK. Once a contract has been agreed upon, it becomes binding on both parties and no one can back out at the last minute. You will find REALTORS® (Estate Agents) to be generally much more helpful, informative and less self serving than you may have been used to in the UK.

In general, I and my team go out of our way to ensure that the process is informative, stress free, pleasurable and ultimately profitable for you. You can choose an Agent, such as ourselves, to represent you and we can show you virtually any property that is for sales in the Okanagan. There is no charge to you (except in a few unusual cases). We would like to offer our services to you. Please read on ofr details:

  • Multiple Listing Service (MLS®): Virtually all real estate properties in BC are listed on a system referred to as the MLS®. All Real Estate Agents have full access to the MLS® and are able to show you and help you buy any property located on the MLS® in their region. This means that you can choose an Agent to work with and they can show you all the properties in an area that are of interest to you.
  • Buyer Agency: Real Estate Agents can have a Buyer Agency Relationship with prospective purchasers That means that they are obliged to represent you to ensure that your best interests are being met at all times.
  • Cost to You: There is generally no cost to you for our services, with some rare exceptions. The seller of a home pays a commission which, under the MLS® system, is generally split between the Seller’s Agent and the Buyer’s Agent.
  • Services Provided by the Buyer’s Agent include the following:
    1. Sourcing and sending you information on properties that may suit your requirements. If you wish to receive this information, please click on the Instant Notification tab on the upper right side of this web page and we will get you started. Information on properties that meet your criteria will be sent to you and new properties that are offered for sale will be sent to you the instant they appear in our system.
    2. Sending additional information: If you require more information about any property we have sent you, such as additional or better pictures, neighbourhood information, proximity to schools, amenitties, etc., we will send you this information, without obligation to you.
    3. Showing properties to you: We will be happy to arrange showings of properties, explain the neighbourhoods to you, show you around the area. When you arrive at the properties, we will show them to you, keeping your priorities in mind. The seller will almost never be present, so you can view the property without interference. No one will be pressuring you to buy.
    4. Help you negotiate the best offer: When you find a property you like, we will fully explain the sales process to you and help you negotiate a contract that keeps your best interests in mind. We will advise offer price, conditions of the sale that protect your best interests and the best purchase price for you. We will advise negotiating strategies and present the offer on your behalf, to the seller. We will then negotiate the purchase price, on your behalf, always keeping your best interests in mind.
    5. Guide you through the process: We will then guide you through the process of doing your due diligence and ensuring that you are in contact with the appropriate professionals to help you determine if the conditions of the offer are met with your satisfaction.
    6. Additional Services: We will also guide you through all other processes such as contacting utility companies, insurance companies, movers, etc., before your completion date. We will also be there to assist you in acclimatizing to your new home after you move in.
  • The Offer/Purchase Process: The process from the offer to the acceptance of offer, removal of conditions, deposit, completion and possession of property in BC are somewhat different from what you may be used to.
    1. Written Offer: All offers on real estate in BC are made in writing. The offer includes price, initial deposit, further deposit, acceptance time (usually the offer is left open for acceptance not more than a few hours) completion date of the contract and terms and conditions.
    2. Acceptance or Counter Offer: Whilst a seller may accept an offer as presented, or reject it outright, it is more frequent that the seller will make a counter offer. When the seller does so, the counter offer is considered to be a new offer and the acceptance time is often modified.
    3. Acceptance of Conditional Offer: Generally the buyer and seller will come to an agreement on price within a 24 hour period. Once the price is agreed upon, the buyer then works to remove the conditions (subjects) of the offer. Sometimes, when the price is agreed upon, the buyer is asked for a relatively small, non-binding deposit. Often an offer will be subject to the buyer receiving confirmation of financing, getting a professional home inspection (survey), checking the property title and Property Disclosure Statement (filled out by the seller regarding the condition of several questions pertaining to the home). These conditions will usually take 1-2 weeks to remove.
    4. Removal of Conditions: Once the buyer is satisfied that the conditions of the contract have been met to their satisfaction the conditions are removed and the full deposit (usually 5-10% of the purchase price) is paid into trust. The contract becomes firm and binding on both parties at this time. Neither party can back out f the contract or accept a higher offer on the property.
    5. Completion of Contract: Completion is at a date specified in the contract, often 1-2 months after acceptance, but sometimes as soon as can be expedited by lawyers for both parties, if the buyer wants to move in quickly and the property can be vacated quickly. The completion of the contract is when the final payment is due from the buyer to the seller. This is the date that the buyer is registered as the new owner of the property in the BC Land Titles Office.
    6. Possession: Possession date is usually at noon on the day after completion, but it can be several days after, depending on the circumstances. It cannot be before registration of the title change is complete and funds have changed hands.
  • After Sales Service: Our team will keep in contact with you and help you find other things you may need in the community, well after the sale is complete. It is our commitment to provide you with exceptional service at all times and to make the buying process stress free and pleasant for you. We also want you to enjoy living in the Okanagan as much as we do.
  • Other Information: If we can supply any other information, please feel free to contact us by email. You may also find additional information elsewhere on this website.

We look forward to hearing from you and helping you relocate in the beautiful Okanagan Valley.