Karelyn Campbell

Cell: 250-618-8213 |

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First Time Home Buyers Guide

Ready to buy your first home in Nanaimo in 2023? I specialize in helping first-time home buyers like you find their dream property in Nanaimo.


Before you start searching for homes online, it's important to take the first step to house shopping: Getting pre-approved for a mortgage.


Your pre-approval will tell you what you can afford and what your monthly payment will be, so it's important to determine this before you start searching for your new home.


Pre-approval is good for about 30-90 days, so once you're ready, take these first 3 steps to get it done.

  1.  Contact me, and I’ll send over a list of lenders I know and trust.
  2.  Look over the list, check out online reviews, and ask friends and family for referrals.
  3.  Email 2-3 lenders you like or let me introduce you over email.

Once you've got your pre-approval letter in hand, it's time to start the search!


Before we hop into the home search, I like to advise my clients to create a "Needs" list and a "Wants" list. This will help us to really focus on the things that are most important in your future home.


Needs are the non-negotiable features; the features you simply must have in your next home. Wants are the ones you’d like to have, but you can add or change down the road. Remember, you can’t change the lot or the location so make sure you love both.


Once you've established what you're looking for, I will set you up on a search so you can receive an email the second a home that fits your criteria goes live. If you have any questions about a property, send me the information and I will find out for you. Send me listings you like and I can get more information and set up showings on your behalf.


After touring houses and choosing the one you love, it's time to make an offer. To do this, you'll need your pre-approval letter or proof of funds. You'll also need to make a deposit of at least 1-2% of the purchase price. This will go towards your closing costs at closing.


Have more questions about buying a home or what happens after making an offer? Reach out to me today!

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How To Be Competitive In A Bidding War

One of the most stressful situations in home buying occurs when other buyers are competing for the home you want. To make an offer on the perfect house only to find out you have entered a bidding war is certainly frustrating.


It doesn’t happen often, but if there is a shortage of homes for sale, or you are looking in a particularly sought-after area, it’s a possibility. It’s common to feel helpless as you wait for communications to come back through the agents involved, hoping for some good news.


To that end, I’ve put together some tips for how to make a multiple offer situation as comfortable and successful as possible for my buyers.

  • Pick a real estate agent who is well organized and an exceptional communicator. A lapse in communication could be interpreted as disinterest. Don’t get overlooked because your agent didn’t communicate with the seller’s agent in a timely manner.
  • Have your pre-approval letter or proof of funds in hand. You may have a great offer to submit, but if you can’t back it up with proof you are qualified to purchase the home the seller may just move on. Make a cash offer if you are able. If not, make as large a down payment as possible, and use a lender that communicates effectively with all parties.
  • Offer more than the asking price. Your agent should do a comparative market analysis to give you a good idea on the home value as soon as you decide to make an offer. If it’s not too out of line with the CMA or your budget, offer more than the asking price.
  • Keep your offer clean and simple. Don’t ask for contingencies that aren’t necessary to closing the transaction.
  • Shorten the subject removal period. Asking for a 5 to 7 day inspection period instead of the traditional 14 lets the seller know that you aren’t going to waste anyone’s time. Find a home inspector who has availability to schedule your inspection as soon as your offer is accepted.
  • Have your deposit ready. Offer a deposit that sends the message that you are serious about your offer and have the funds ready to turn in as soon as your offer is accepted.
  • Offer flexibility with your closing date. Convey through your agent that you are willing adjust the closing date to suit the seller’s needs.
  • Include a personal letter with a family photo. Let the seller know who you are, what you like about the home, and that you intend to take good care of their former residence. Let them know what it is about the home that has already made it special to you.
  • Offer an additional deposit after the subject removal period. This is another way to let the seller know you are serious about the house and not just trying to get it off the market while you make up your mind or look further.
  • Consider an escalation clause. Let the seller know that if your offer isn’t the highest you will go up by including a clause stating that you will increase your offer, up to a set price, if the seller shows you a higher offer from another buyer.
  • Be diplomatic with negotiations after your contract is signed. Remember that the seller has other interested parties to fall back on. If you turn ugly after the contract is signed, making additional demands or not following through with your promises, the seller may hand you back your deposit and work with someone else.
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MLS® property information is provided under copyright© by the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board and Victoria Real Estate Board. The information is from sources deemed reliable, but should not be relied upon without independent verification.