Mortgage Rate Games

Since last week, four of Canada’s ‘Big Six’ banks have raised their posted mortgage rates: TD Canada Trust by 45 bps (from 5.14% to 5.59%) and the other three by 10-30 bps. These rates aren’t ‘real’ in the sense that they are typically about 2% higher than the actual 5 year fixed rate that you… Read More

Millennials Look To Smaller Cities For Dream Homes

A recent ranking of the top “millennial hot spots” in Canada had some surprising results. The country’s biggest cities — Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal — didn’t make the top five, despite their standing as employment and cultural hubs. To determine the best Canadian cities for millennials, research by Point2Homes looked at nine factors: housing affordability,… Read More

Improve Your Chances of Obtaining a Home Mortgage

Securing financing to purchase a new home is one of the most important, exciting, and nerve-wracking financial steps most people will ever take. The government has tightened mortgage lending rules several times in recent years, and banks have become increasingly cautious about making mortgage commitments. Does this mean that you won’t be able to get… Read More

Radon Gas Is The Second Leading Cause of Lung Cancer

House with radiation hazard

Ongoing research into the presence and effects of radon gas has produced some disturbing results – the gas is in almost twice as many Canadian homes as previously estimated. Health Canada estimates that radon exposure causes the deaths of about 3,200 Canadians every year. That makes it the second leading cause of lung cancer, representing… Read More

When Does The Seller Have To Move Out On Closing Day?

Moving Van

Most sellers and buyers are at least a bit confused about this question. The standard wording of the Purchase and Sale Agreement says that the Agreement “shall be completed by no later than 6:00 p.m. on the _____ day of ____________, 2011. Upon completion, vacant possession of the property shall be given to the buyer unless… Read More

Five Things You Should Know About Home Inspections

If you’re hiring someone to inspect the home you want to buy, or you’re a seller trying to find out if there are any hidden problems that need fixing before you put your home on the market, here are five things you need to know: 1. You can choose your home inspector. Your real estate… Read More

How To Keep Your Mortgage Approval Approved

You know how tough it is to qualify for a mortgage. Prove you’ve got a long-term job with ample income. A credit score to the moon. Your life’s savings as a down payment. More cash stashed away. A debt-to-income ratio to die for. For some, tax returns for the last two years. You’ve been there,… Read More

Buying Your First Condo

Condo Buildings

With more than 500,000 condominium units in Canada and one in four new homes built as condominiums, Canadian buyers need basic condominium buying skills to protect them in any market. Too often, condominium buyers fall prey to the “do nothing, just play” sales pitches inherent in lifestyle campaigns presented by condominium developers. Although “condo living”… Read More

How to Make Long-Term Real Estate Decisions

No longer is there an automatic last move for boomers—that is, being moved into a HOME. No longer is there a “last stage” of adult life that dictates an end to independence and to living in a home you love.  Aging in place, or staying in your own home as you age, even if you… Read More

Will New Mortgage Rules Disrupt the Market?

Last October, the federal government introduced mortgage rules that required anyone needing mortgage insurance (less than 20% down payment) to pass a ‘stress test’ to prove that they could afford the payments if mortgage rates were to increase. The Bank of Canada’s posted rate, approximately 2% higher than the rates actually available, was chosen as… Read More