Home Sellers: The Curse Of The First Offer

Sometimes when everything goes right we have trouble accepting that fact. Perhaps nowhere is this phenomenon more clearly illustrated than in the case where a seller receives a good offer right away. The annals of real estate are well stocked with stories of sellers who refused to take a good, but not perfect, first offer,… Read More

New Mortgage Qualification Rules – More Unintended Consequences

As previously reported here, the B-20 ‘stress test’ mortgage qualification rules (requiring buyers to qualify ‘as if’ the mortgage rate were 2 points higher than it actually is) has resulted in a significant reduction in the number of real estate sales across the country. In turn, this caused an unintended knock-on impact on economic activity… Read More

Interest Rates Unlikely To Rise In 2019

The latest data from Statistics Canada shows that GDP has actually fallen in four of the past six months, suggesting that, after the longest (if one of the weakest) recoveries ever, we are heading toward a recession within the next year or so. Click to view monthly GDP chart This is why the Bank of… Read More

Canada Is A Haven For Money Laundering

There’s a lot of ‘dirty money’ in the world, and many complex schemes to ‘launder’ this money and convert it into ‘clean’ funds. Real estate is a very popular venue for such laundering, particularly in Canada, as we have some of the weakest laws in the world to defend against money laundering. A recent report… Read More

Trends Cost Sellers Money

Every new and widely-adopted trend changes what’s considered “standard.” When this happens in real estate — inside or out — a seller’s non-trend or off-trend house or condominium unit may become “substandard” in buyers’ eyes. Sellers who expect top dollar for their property must ensure it makes an on-trend impression with homebuyers, especially millennials. In… Read More

Toronto Considering Land Transfer Tax Increase

In early 2007, the City of Toronto instituted a Toronto Land Transfer Tax (on top of the Ontario Land Transfer Tax) as a way to increase revenues while avoiding large (and politically unpopular) increases in property taxes or decreases in expenses. This tax applies only to properties in the “Old Toronto” 416 area code. For… Read More

I Want To Sell My Home – How Much Work Should I Do?

Getting Your Home Ready to Sell

You’ve started looking for a new house, and you’ve seen a couple that you like. Your present house has served you well, but the last major renovations were done almost 20 years ago. How much work should you do to get the house ready to put on the market as soon as you buy the… Read More

Torontonians Say The City Isn’t Doing Enough To Increase The Supply Of Housing

In a recent survey, Forum Research found that 69% of Toronto residents feel that the City should be doing more to increase the supply of rental housing across the city. As previously reported, there is a rental housing crisis in Toronto due to the influx of new residents, declining affordability (forcing would-be buyers to rent),… Read More

The Critical First Two Weeks of Marketing Your Home For Sale

Real estate agents share their listings with other real estate agents in the multiple listing service (MLS) under certain rules of cooperation and compensation. One of the rules of cooperation is that each agent make a new listings available to other MLS members within 48 hours of signing the listing agreement with the seller. This… Read More

Toronto Homes Among the Most Overvalued in the World

The Economist magazine has published a very cool interactive chart that allows you to see at a glance how home prices in major cities around the world compare to each other over the past 20 years, and how ‘overvalued’ they are in terms of the ratio of price to household income. As you can see… Read More