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Mortgage Decisions - Look Beyond the Interest Rate

Tuesday Nov 19th, 2019

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  For Mortgage Decisions - Look Beyond the Interest Rate and Get Expert Advice November, 2019 Are you among the shoppers who carefully read the labels of items you plan to buy? It seems that more and more Canadians are making informed purchasing decisions a priority, and Paul Taylor, president and CEO of Mortgage Professionals Canada, welcomes this attention to detail. He believes the same – if not greater – scrutiny is warranted when people are obtaining or renewing... [read more]

October 2019 GTA Market Stats

Tuesday Nov 05th, 2019

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8,491 home sales were reported through the Toronto Real Estate Board MLS in October 2019, continuing the trend of improved year over year sales with a 14 per cent jump from the same month a year earlier. Conversely, the number of properties for sale continued to trend downward with a 9.6 per cent decline in new listings and an 18.8 per cent decline in active listings compared to October 2018. More sales with less inventory resulted in a 5.5 per cent growth in prices averaged across all... [read more]

Winter Home Maintenance Checklist

Tuesday Nov 05th, 2019

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With the winter just around the corner, it’s time to get your house in shape for the cooler months ahead. Although autumn can be one of the busiest seasons for homeowners preparing for winter, it’s also the best time to take advantage of the moderate weather to repair any damages before the first frost sets in. Here are some home maintenance tips that will keep your home running in peak condition all winter long. Outdoor Preparation Check the roof for cracked or... [read more]

July 2019 GTA Market Stats

Wednesday Aug 07th, 2019

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8,595 home sales were reported through the Toronto Real Estate Board MLS in July 2019, continuing the trend of improved year over year sales with a 24.3 per cent jump from the same month a year earlier. The average selling price for all home types combined was up by just over 3 per cent over the same period and continues to be driven by higher density home types. On average, single detached home prices remained lower than last year’s levels in the 416 area but had a modest increase of 2.5... [read more]

The Pros and Cons of Co-signed Mortgages

Thursday Jul 11th, 2019

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The Benefits and Risks of Co-Signing for a Mortgage: Thanks to tighter mortgage qualification rules and higher-priced real estate—particularly in the greater Vancouver and Toronto areas—it’s not always easy to qualify for a mortgage on your own merits. You may very well have a great job, a decent income, a husky down payment and perfect credit, but that still may not be enough. When a lender crunches the numbers, their calculations may indicate too much of your income... [read more]

Market Watch - 2nd Quarter 2019

Tuesday Jun 11th, 2019

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After a sluggish start to 2019, the second quarter appears to be reflecting a positive shift in consumer sentiment toward home ownership. Households continue to see ownership housing as a quality long-term investment as population growth from immigration remains strong and the regional economy continues to create jobs across a diversity of sectors.   Ontario - Blossoming Real Estate Market Bolsters May Resales Toronto, 06 June 2019 -- Toronto Real Estate Board President Garry... [read more]

March 2019 GTA Market Stats

Friday Apr 05th, 2019

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Competition between buyers, low inventory, keep market tight… March 2019 activity was the softest in 10 years in the GTA but relative to February, resales increased to just under 2% m/m (on a preliminary seasonally-adjusted basis). A lack of buying options continue to be a factor holding back activity as the number of new listings fell 4.5% from a year ago. Robert Hogue, Senior Economist with RBC, says this explanation finds some support in the fact that the benchmark price rose at a... [read more]

Federal Budget March 19 2019 - Actions for Homebuyers

Wednesday Mar 20th, 2019

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The March 19 2019 Federal budget offered help to young homebuyers, many of whom find it very difficult to afford to purchase in some of our more expensive cities. There were two measures targeted at first-time homebuyers: Maximum Withdrawal from RRSPs Is Increased The simplest to understand is the $10,000 increase in the federal Home Buyers' Plan (HBP) maximum tax-free withdrawal... [read more]

Is There a Best Time of Year to Sell Your Home?

Sunday Mar 17th, 2019

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One of the questions we Realtors frequently get asked is, "When is the best time to sell our house?" In fact, what people are really asking is, "How do we get the maximum value for our property?" It is not really about the time of the year. However, weather and holidays do play an important factor in selling your home. Almost no one goes house hunting around Christmas, and few give up their summer vacations. Late March to June is usually thought of as the best time... [read more]

1st Time Home Buyers Tax Credit

Thursday Mar 07th, 2019

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The First-Time Home Buyers Tax Credit (HBTC) is a non-refundable tax credit for eligible home buyers who buy a qualifying home after January 27, 2009. If you have a disability or are buying a home for a relative with a disability, you do not have to be a first-time home buyer. The value of the HBTC is based on $5,000 multiplied by the lowest federal income tax rate for the year. In 2013 the lowest federal income tax rate was 15%, and it remains the same in 2014, so the value of the HBTC... [read more]

Residential Market Commentary - BoC Holding Steady Against Headwinds

Friday Jan 18th, 2019

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I wanted to share a bit more information with you on what we see happening with interest rates; the article is below.  It appears to be a story of stability, which is long over due after all the regulatory mortgage changes and the ensuing 5 interest rate hikes, all of which put a bit of a wet blanket on the housing market. Residential Market Commentary – Bank of Canada holding steady against headwinds The Bank of Canada has not just stepped to the interest rate sidelines, it... [read more]

Title Insurance...Why it's Important

Tuesday Jan 01st, 2019

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Title insurance is an insurance policy that protects you, the homeowner, against challenges to the ownership of your home or from problems related to the title to your home. The policy provides coverage against losses due to title defects, even if the defects existed before you purchased your home. This article will provide you with some background information about title insurance to help you make an informed decision. Title to Property The title is the legal term for ownership of... [read more]

2019 Rate Forecast...A Softened Stance

Wednesday Dec 19th, 2018

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The Bank of Canada has been easing off on interest hike chatter in the last number of weeks.  I just wanted to share this article with you, which I thought is a good read and forecasts what you can expect in January.    Residential Market Commentary - A softened stance on future rate hikes  Back in October it was all “clear sailing and full steam ahead”.  Now the forecast is calling for “headwinds and choppy seas with poor... [read more]

Bank of Canada takes a Holiday from Rate Increases

Wednesday Nov 28th, 2018

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Just a quick update on the mortgage market as we head towards another regular interest rate announcement by the Bank of Canada on Dec 5th.   The Bank of Canada gets one more chance to raise interest rates before the end of the year but market watchers are betting against a Christmas increase.  The October inflation numbers, which came in above expectations, would normally be seen as a green light for the Bank to go ahead with another quarter-point increase.  Headline... [read more]

ARE YOU READY? How to Prepare for Natural Disasters

Monday Nov 19th, 2018

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Are you and your family ready to face an emergency such as a flood, wildfire, earthquake or power outage? Do you have an emergency plan and an emergency kit to survive the first 72 hours following a disaster? Here are essentials tips to be better prepared and to recover from emergencies. Identify Possible Emergency Disaster Hazards Check with your local disaster management office to determine what potential risks exist in your area. Emergency risks include natural disasters such as floods,... [read more]

Fall-Winter Home Maintenance Checklist

Thursday Oct 25th, 2018

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As the winter season approaches and the air become crisp, it's time to start thinking about preparing your house for the season. The winter season means spending more time indoors, hence roofs need to shed rain and snow, windows and doors need to reject the cold, and the heating system needs to keep rooms comfortable. If any of these components don't hold up, you might be faced with scrambling around in the wet, cold and dark to fix them. By handling these important yet reasonably... [read more]

October 2018 Mortgage Update

Wednesday Oct 17th, 2018

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October 17, 2018 Just a quick update for you on the mortgage market on this rather dreary and wet start to Fall. Currently we are experiencing upward pressure on mortgage rates…now is a great time to get your pre-approvals done and hold today’s rates for up to 120 days.  A reasonable rule of thumb for you to utilize as you figure out your monthly mortgage carrying costs, would be $500/month for each 100k borrowed. Residential Market Commentary – Increases in... [read more]

Top 3 Misconceptions About Reverse Mortgages

Tuesday Aug 21st, 2018

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 1. The Bank Owns Your Home.  2. Your Estate Can Owe More Than Your Home  3. The Best Time to take a Reverse Mortgage is at the End of Your Retirement  Let’s examine each misconception in more detail.  1. The Bank Owns Your Home.  Over 50% of Canadian homeowners over the age of 65, believe the bank owns your home once you’ve taken a reverse mortgage. Not true! We simply register our position on the title of the home, exactly... [read more]

Some Relief for Self-employed Borrowers

Thursday Aug 16th, 2018

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  Self-employed Canadians will be happy to hear that CMHC is willing to make some changes that will make it easier to qualify for a mortgage. In an announcement on July 19, 2018, the CMHC has said “Self-employed Canadians represent a significant part of the Canadian workforce. These policy changes respond to that reality by making it easier for self-employed borrowers to obtain CMHC mortgage loan insurance and benefit from competitive interest rates.” — Romy Bowers,... [read more]

After the Rate Hike...Fixed vs Variable?

Sunday Jul 22nd, 2018

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It’s the perennial question homebuyers ask themselves and one that’s getting a lot of attention these days: should I go fixed or variable?   And the answer may have just become a little more complicated now that the Bank of Canada (BoC) has raised its overnight target rate to 1.50%.   The rate increase, which affects variable rate mortgages and Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOCs), as well as the BoC’s statement that suggests more rate hikes are on the way, are... [read more]

When is the Best Time to Sell?

Monday Jun 25th, 2018

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  A lot of considerations go into selling your home. It can often be a chaotic time—you’ll be choosing a Real Estate Agent, making necessary improvements, coordinating showings and open houses, and possibly shopping for your new home as well. But one consideration many people overlook is how the time of year affects the sale. In Canada, where there are four distinct seasons, seasonal influences play a large part in creating good selling conditions. Wintertime brings... [read more]

May 2018 GTA Market Stats

Wednesday Jun 06th, 2018

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Tight Market Conditions Keeping Prices Stable: The Toronto Real Estate Board has reported a 22-per-cent drop in the number of homes sold in the GTA in May 2018 compared to May 2017 and a 26-per-cent decline in new listings of homes for sale, both statistics suggestive that consumers are still on the sidelines waiting for evidence of recovery in the GTA market. The decline in listings is helping keep prices stable with the average selling price rising 1.1 per cent in May compared to... [read more]

Basement Waterproofing Technologies

Tuesday May 29th, 2018

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Basement leakage is the most common problem found in houses, and over 90% of all basements will leak and suffer damage at one time or another. Some evidence of moisture penetration can be found in almost every house. A house with water problems does not necessarily mean it was poorly constructed. Water can appear in even the best built home. Moisture problems can be intermittent. In some houses, water penetration will occur after virtually every rainfall. In other houses, it will occur only... [read more]

The Advantages of Tankless Water Heaters

Thursday May 24th, 2018

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If your current water heater is reaching its end of life or you're looking for a more energy-efficient water heating solution, then it may be time to give an on-demand – or tankless – water heater a serious look.  Traditional water heaters used by most Canadian homeowners store heated water in a hot water storage tank. As hot water is used up from the storage tank, it gets replaced by incoming cold water, lowering the temperature of the stored water. An electric... [read more]

After the Accepted Offer-Closing the Deal

Sunday May 13th, 2018

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Congratulations, your offer has been accepted and you can’t wait to move into your new home. But don’t start celebrating yet. There is one final stage involved in purchasing a home - closing the deal. Having your offer accepted does not mean the end of your real estate transaction, there is still plenty of work that needs to be done in order to "close the deal."  Closing involves many complicated and time-consuming legal manoeuvres, which is why you’ve... [read more]

April 2018 GTA Market Stats

Sunday May 06th, 2018

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Sales through the TREB MLS in April 2018 on a year-over-year basis were down by just over 32 per cent. Compared to April 2017, which had the highest average sale price on record for the Board, April 2018’s average selling price was down by 12.4 per cent. April’s average sales price was 0.2 per cent below the average sales price in March this year. The month-to-month sales numbers suggest a leveling over the past two months from the drops seen in January and February of this... [read more]

5 Home Renovations That Pay Off

Tuesday May 01st, 2018

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  When it comes to preparing your home for sale, Sellers make it their objective to get the most return on their homes. Before starting any home improvement, you should evaluate the return on investment (ROI). Ask yourself what renovations will boost the resale value of the house. Here are a few renovations ideas that pay off. 1. Floors Replacing dated, scuffed floors can give your house a new sheen and make small spaces seem larger. Flooring can generate a payback as high as 75%... [read more]

9 Factors That Drive The Real Estate Market - Tips For Investors

Saturday Apr 28th, 2018

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Investing in real estate can be a  solid, wealth building strategy, but you need to know what you are doing to avoid losing money. Some people make this their occupation and others dabble in it from time to time. To succeed as a real estate investor you must understand the factors that drive the real estate market in your area. Here are a few points to consider:     1- Mortgage interest rates Low interest rates allow a greater proportion of renters to become... [read more]

1st Time Home Buyers Tax Credit

Sunday Apr 22nd, 2018

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The First-Time Home Buyers Tax Credit (HBTC) is one of the measures provided by the federal government in 2009 to encourage investment in Canadian housing. For 2009 and subsequent years, the HBTC is a new non-refundable tax credit, based on an amount of $5,000, for certain home buyers that acquire a qualifying home after January 27, 2009 (i.e., generally means that the closing is after this date). The HBTC is calculated by multiplying the lowest personal income tax rate for the year (15%... [read more]

How to Cancel A Credit Card Without Hurting Your Credit Score

Wednesday Apr 18th, 2018

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The decision to cancel a credit card may be based on the desire to avoid excessive spending or if the terms of the card, such as annual fees or a high interest rate, are no longer attractive. While credit cards aren’t evil, they can be very dangerous. You need to be careful with the way you wield credit. If you’re not careful, you could do some real damage to your credit standing. Be aware that cancelling a credit card may actually hurt your credit score. Part of your score is... [read more]

Protecting Ontario Homes - Grow Ops

Monday Apr 16th, 2018

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Home buyers need better protections with the legalization of marijuana on the horizon... OREA releases recommendations to protect consumers against the risks involved in purchasing a former grow-op. TORONTO, ON, April 9, 2018 – Growing marijuana in a home can pose significant health and safety issues for unsuspecting home buyers. With the legalization of marijuana looming, there are no rules in place to protect a home buyer from purchasing a former grow operation. In its Action... [read more]

Condominium Ownership...The Pros and Cons

Sunday Apr 15th, 2018

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Wondering whether or not condominium living really is the right choice for you? You may love the idea of ditching your snow shovel and lawn mower when you move into a condo, but you might not be so happy about leaving your satellite dish behind to comply with a bylaw. Like most types of accommodation, condominiums have their advantages and disadvantages. Carefully consider all of these pros and cons when deciding whether or not a condo fits with your lifestyle, personality and financial... [read more]

Getting Your Ducks In A Row With A Mortgage Pre-Approval

Friday Apr 13th, 2018

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GETTING YOUR DUCKS IN A ROW… Thinking of buying a property, but don’t know where to start? Well… that’s where a mortgage pre-approval comes in. Start here. Just like you wouldn’t go into a restaurant without having enough money to buy your meal, so you shouldn’t start shopping for a home without an understanding of how much you can afford. So, let’s have a conversation about mortgage pre-approvals so you can get this house hunting... [read more]

Retirement Living Options

Thursday Apr 12th, 2018

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Retirement isn’t what it used to be. These days, rather than sitting back and watching the roses grow, more of us want to use the extra time, energy, and any cash released from the sale of a property to travel the world or fulfill some other lifelong ambition. Today’s retirees want somewhere they can perhaps travel from and entertain. Health issues are still there but more people now stay fit for longer, have the spending power, and have the force of numbers to drive change. A... [read more]

Changing Real Estate Market

Tuesday Apr 10th, 2018

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Swing Towards More Balanced Market Rising interest rates and stricter mortgage requirements have reduced home buyers’ purchasing power, particularly for those at the entry level of our Canadian market. The supply of apartment and townhome properties for sale today is unable to meet demand. On the other hand, the detached home market is beginning to enter buyers’ market territory. Condo sales are in fact driving the number of properties sold at the moment. Due to demand, the... [read more]

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