Advice

There are currently 20 blog entries related to this category.


Image: Heritage School of Interior Design

It's not just Vancouver; Chinese buying drying up in Seattle too!

We knew there was going to be a sharp turn in the market coming into 2018 and now the numbers reflect it: the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) has just reported that July’s residential housing sales in Metro Vancouver reached their lowest levels for that month since the year 2000. Without a doubt, this has something to do with the Foreign Buyers Tax and the Additional Property Transfer Tax for Foreign Nationals. But what you probably didn't know is that our friends South of the border are experiencing the same cool down in their housing market.

Seattle has been one of the hottest markets in America and one of the greatest

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We wanted to let you know about a new real estate rule that came into effect last Friday, June 15 that will affect the way you work with a realtor. Limited Dual Agency will no longer be allowed. What is "limited dual agency"? And what impact will this have on you? Keep reading to find out. 

Limited Dual Agency

In the very recent past, real estate agents were able to represent both the buyer and the seller. Example: if a realtor's client was interested in buying a property that was listed by the same Realtor. The "limited dual agency" would require that the Realtor sign an agreement, where he/she is bound by contract to act impartially on behalf of both the buyer and the seller. Although this works in theory, clients are at the mercy of

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The top three stressors in life are: (1) Death of a loved one; (2) Divorce; and (3) Moving. Buying a home can be bundled into the likes of Moving and can be difficult without the help and support of professionals. Now throw in the mix of buying a home for the first time... feeling overwhelmed would be an understatement.

We stumbled across this First-Time Buyer's Workbook (published by Canada Guaranty) and wanted to share it with all of our blog readers. We're loving the simplicity of the guide but the best part? It's interactive and has worksheets that help you crunch the numbers. Starting on page eight (8), you'll find the following worksheets: 

  1. Calculate Personal Finances
  2. Calculate Your Down Payment
  3. Plan for the Upfront
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    There were 4770 detached homes listed for sale in the Greater Vancouver area last month (February) and only 13% (621 homes) sold! The market seems to be entering buyers' territory, giving buyers a chance to buy their dream home. But what does this mean for sellers? What if you need to sell your home right away? You very likely loved your home and want to see it do well. To ensure a transaction and maximize your profit from the sale, here are a few pointers for today's Vancouver market.   

PRICING IS EVERYTHING

The most common pitfall of a home lingering on the market is overpricing. It's important to price your home just right - there's a fine line between undervaluing your home and pricing it above buyers' expectations. Find out from…
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Multiple Offers on Condominiums and Townhouses the "New Norm"

Many condos jumped 25% or more year-over-year in 2017 and that strength is continuing in early 2018. “Demand has been increasing for months and supply is not keeping pace. This dynamic is causing prices to increase and making multiple offer scenarios the norm," says Jill Oudil, Real Estate Board of Great Vancouver (REBGV) president. What does this mean for first-time home buyers or those who are trying to get into the market? 

Knowledge

Know exactly how much you can afford or how high you can go; this includes being pre-approved for a mortgage so it shows the seller you are serious about the offer you are making. Research the market and know exactly what is within your budget.

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Goodbye 2017

Let's just dive right into it! 2017 was like sailing uncharted waters. 2015 and 2016 had some of the busiest activity we've seen in the Vancouver market since we've been in the real estate business but as soon as 2017 came around, it was clear that the tides had turned and things were not going to be as easy. The Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board (www.rebgv.org) - link to the article below - reported that there was a 9.9% decrease in activity compared to 2016 and a 15% decrease in activity compared to 2015. We've mentioned in a previous post that there were a few contributing factors to this decrease in 2017: (1) surprise interest rate early in the year; (2) continued drop in offshore money/investment; (3) bank tightening and

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It's so nice to be back on this side of the Winter Solstice where the days are getting longer again. Thankfully it has been a mild winter season so far and we haven't seen too much snow in the city. We'll be posting a blog entry later this week with a look back at 2017 and what we should expect of the Vancouver market in 2018. But while we're on the topic of Winter, we wanted to let all of you know a few tips and tricks of selling your home in the winter. We've been asked this question many a time: "When is the best time to sell my home?" Our short answer is always "Spring" but the answer is never that simple. It depends on the circumstances of the homeowner: what if you need to sell right away regardless of the season? If that's your situation, fret

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The government announced new mortgage rules, including a stress test for borrowers last week, effective January 1. The stress test is designed to simulate a borrower's financial situation by assuming they would have to pay back the loan at the posted average — not whatever deal they were able to negotiate. So under OSFI's new rules, borrowers would be stress tested at either the 5-year average posted rate, or 2% higher than their actual mortgage rate — whichever one is higher.

So what does this all mean? Regardless of whether you have 20% down, you will have to qualify for a mortgage under the new stress test. If you are thinking about buying, especially as a new homebuyer, please take these new lending rules into consideration. Unless you have an

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Our clients look forward to attending the Home Shows each year - we know we do! The focus of the Fall Home Show is Interior Design and Decor. If you're looking to renovate or redesign your home, get some inspiration for future projects, or just want to see what the new trends are, this is the place to be! It will take place at the Vancouver Convention Centre (West) from Thursday to Sunday, October 26-29. The show is also featuring quite a few HGTV stars that will be offering their expert advice. 

We're giving away quite a few COMPLIMENTARY TICKETS on Facebook and Instagram this week so you and a friend can attend together! Give us a follow on either Facebook or Instagram (or both!) on the post, and tag someone you'd like to attend the Home Show with.

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Photo Source: Swoonworthy

The IKEA catalogue signals a start to the new school year and has everyone flocking to IKEA for the latest in home goods. We were at IKEA over the Long Weekend before school started and let me tell you, it was not for the faint of heart - school-aged children running around, University-bound kids shopping for dorm room necessities, adults frantically trying to get their hands on whatever they had circled in the catalogue... 

All of that had us thinking... why don't we try out a few IKEA "hacks" to make our kitchen a little different than most? And if you're considering selling your home, these are simple, affordable hacks that will help with making your kitchen stand out from the rest. Here are a few hacks we've

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