Free seminar for first-time home buyers is March 11

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Thinking about buying your first home?  This is the seminar you can't afford to miss.

Buying a home for the first time is a huge milestone and can evoke a roller coaster of emotions, from excitement to panic, and lots of questions in between. What are the mortgage options? How much can be withdrawn tax-free from RRSPs? How about legal considerations, closing costs and home warranties?

With so many factors to consider when buying a new home, it is no surprise first-time purchasers need help de-mystifying the process, and the Greater Vancouver Home Builders’ Association’s  (GVHBA) annual free seminar for first-time home buyers is the place to get all the answers.

Back by popular demand, GVHBA’s 20th Annual Seminar for First-time Home Buyers is on Tuesday, March 11 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Bell Performing Arts Centre, 6250 144 St. The exhibit area, featuring new-home builders and home-related products and services is open from 6-7 p.m.

Admission to the seminar is free thanks to the presenting sponsor, the provincial Homeowner Protection Office, branch of BC Housing; patron sponsor Dominion Macklem Mortgages; media sponsor Glacier Media, and corporate sponsors Canada Mortgage & Housing Corp., FortisBC, Genworth Financial Canada, Travelers Canada, Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, The Vancouver Sun, The Province and CKNW.

Speakers are Robyn Adamache, senior market analyst, Canada Mortgage & Housing Corp.; Narrinder Dhanoya-Bhangu, vice-president, Pacific region, Genworth Financial Canada; Bill Macklem, president, Dominion Macklem Mortgages; Sandra Wyant, president-elect, Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver; Howard Friedman, vice-president, chief underwriting officer, Travelers Canada; Brad Ricketts, energy solutions manager, FortisBC; and Gregory van Popta, partner, McQuarrie Hunter LLP. Seminar moderator is Shayne Ramsay, chief executive officer of BC Housing.

"With interest rates still incredibly low and builders offering many new-home product choices, this is a great time for first-time buyers to consider taking that critical first step onto the property ladder,” said GVHBA CEO Bob de Wit.

"Real estate continues to be a hot topic in Metro Vancouver, and GVHBA is at the forefront of connecting the residential construction industry with consumers. Seminar attendance is expected to be as many, or greater than, the 750 people who attended last year’s event.  This is a one-stop information shop for first-time home buyers, so anyone considering buying a home should come to this free seminar," he said.

Pre-registration is required. Register online at or call 778-565-4288. There is ample free on-site parking, and public transit is right at the corner.  Although the seminar is free, attendees are asked to bring a food item for the Surrey Food Bank.

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