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You've heard the market is hot... but could you be cashing in and not even realize it? Read on for the top 4 moves that yield the most return. 


1. Investors

Did you buy an investment property thinking it would be a cakewalk and the cash would roll in? Are you tired of dealing with tenants and maintaining an additional home? This would be the perfect time to offload a high maintenance investment and move the money into something lower maintenance. We’ve seen some people make over $100,000 on a house they purchased 4 short years ago. Keep in mind, it's important to have a good handle on the rules and procedures for selling a tenant occupied property, including the following:


A) If a tenant is on a fixed term lease, they can't be kicked out! 

B) If a tenant is on a month to month lease, you can give them notice to vacate so long as you or the new owners plan to occupy the space.

C) Tenants are entitled to 60 days’ notice and are owed one month rent for the inconvenience.

D) If they want to move prior to the 60 days being up, they can give you 10 days written notice and vacate sooner.


Make sure to hire a REALTOR® who is familiar with selling tenant occupied properties. Tasha and Saira have both taken a full course on this topic and have helped many clients sell their investments.



2. Seniors

If you are a senior or have a senior in your life who has been contemplating moving to a retirement home or care facility, there has never been a better time. We've seen homes in desirable areas go for over $100,000-$200,000 over their asking price and this extra money can go a long way towards a rental. Seniors can do research about where they want to move, tour different facilities and sign a lease before they list their home. Having a place to move and a game plan will help to alleviate some of the stress of a move. They can also plan what furniture they will take based on their new floor plan and the rest could be donated to Anney's Closet!




3. Downsizers

If you're in a large family home and are ready to move into something smaller and lower maintenance, this is anexcellent time to free up some of your equity! The market for condos and townhouses is still competitive, however, it is not as aggressive as the housing market. Moving to a strata may be a new concept to you, so it's important to have a REALTOR® advise you on the differences living in a strata. For example, what is covered in fees, what the rules and bylaws are, whether or not there are restrictions on pets, ages or rentals, or where you can park your vehicle!




4. Moving out of town, or further out of town.

Are you ready to move to a home that's newer and away from the hustle and bustle of the city? Whether it's to a shiny new house in Happy Valley or up the highway to Mill Bay and beyond, there is an upside to moving to a market that's not as hot as the one you're in. Another bonus of moving to some of the newer developing communities is there is no property transfer tax payable when you purchase a brand new property you will occupy as your principal residence. If you are being relocated for work, it would be a great idea to get in touch with a REALTOR® in the city of your future job to see what the market is like there. They can provide consultation services to help you determine if it would be a good move to purchase instead of rent. If you need a recommendation to an agent in another city in Canada or the US, let us know! We have connections across North America. 




There are many options in a busy market and it can be difficult to decide what is right for you. Give us a call to find out how you can make the most of this red-hot market! 

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A month into the new year and 2015 has already been a great year for our team. We have kept busy by meeting new clients, organizing our upcoming mini series and helping 8 clients move this month alone! 


Read on for mortgage brokers vs banks, market analysis tools and great apps. 


5 Reasons Why We Choose Brokers Over Banks 


1. Options: Mortgage brokers have a database of lenders and mortgage rates and they will do the shopping around for you whereas a bank relies on their rates. Brokers may also be able to negotiate you a better rate than your bank.

2. Service: Brokers do not represent any one lender so they are able to give independent advice based on your best interest. Brokers will look at your long term goals and find ways to save you money and pay off your mortgage faster. If you can't make it to an office during business hours, you may be able to arrange with a broker to meet you at your home in the evening.


3. Speed: When you have an accepted offer, there is a limited amount of time to get a financing approval. In our experience, brokers work faster than banks. 
4. Credit Reports: If you shop around to different lenders, your credit report may be pulled multiple times which could negatively effect your score. Brokers will only pull your credit score once and if your credit score is low, a broker can give you advice on how to bring the score up.
5. Potential Penalties & The Fine Print: Whether you want to pay off your mortgage before the fixed term is up, port your mortgage to a new property or have someone else assume your mortgage, a broker will be able to navigate the fine print of every lender. Banks typically have the largest penalties compared to lenders that only brokers have access to. 
Housing Market Information Portal 
For all of our past clients, keep your eyes peeled on your inbox the next few weeks as we will be sending out valuable market information about your home and surrounding area. We'll be providing you with a great snapshot of what has been happening in the housing market in your neck of the woods. 
In the meantime or if you have not bought or sold your home with us, check out this awesome portal hosted by CMHC. Poke around this interactive map to find out vacancy rates, population, average rental prices and housing need in different areas. 

Never Miss a Pick-Up Day! 
You have a millions things to think of on any given day - don't think about garbage! If this is the first you are hearing of the CRD's recycling reminder app, you may have just saved yourself from running out to your curb in your slippers and robe. Visit the CRD's website to download an app for your phone that will notify you on pick up days - even on those tricky statutory holidays. Check your municipality's website if they have one for waste/food scraps like the City of Victoria's
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We are not just talking about the weather in Victoria. The market this spring has been a busy one. It doesn't take long for a feeding frenzy to start amongst buyers and that's what we've seen in the last month. The hottest commodity in Victoria and the surrounding areas has definitely been houses with suites under $600,000.  The more challenging properties to sell have been condos and townhouses (especially with rental restrictions).


We are continuing to see developers build and create new inventory in the condo and townhouse markets and consequently, it will take longer for the inventory to be absorbed and bought up by consumers.


Hot tip: If you are in a condo and want to get into a house - it's better to get your condo on the market and wait for an offer before you try to purchase a house.

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Good news for Victoria REALTORS® and homeowners, the 2013 market continues improve month over month compared to 2012! This September we had 68 more sales and 104 less new listings, as shown below. There are 478 less listings than last year.

What does this mean for buyers and sellers? We are in a more of a blanced market. Gone are the days when buyers could wait two weeks to see a property they're interested in, because now they are getting snatched up!  People considering selling, we are in the last push of the year before Christmas! If you want to move before it gets too frosty, now is the time to list! Contact me for a free consultation.

Tuesday October 1, 2013 8:00am:


Sept Sept
  2013 2012
Net Unconditional Sales: 487 419
New Listings: 1,106 1,210
Active Listings: 4,547 5,025


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Finally an article in the Financial Post that speaks a bit of truth! It explains that some buyers are waiting on the sidelines for this so-called housing "bubble" to burst.. but what if there is no bubble at all? What if all this "bubble" talk is simply  the media sensationalizing our real estate "market".

The article explains that for a "crash" to occur there needs to be a spark or a catalyst in our market place. Two event that could cause sellers to drop their prices and "have to sell" would be a substantial rise in interest rates or job loss - neither which are happening in Canada.

So what do we have instead? Sellers are holding their prices steady. Some sellers are taking their homes off the market and waiting for a better time to sell.

According to Don Lawby, chief executive of the Century 21 Canada, “The economy continues to be okay, people have jobs, interest rates are low,” said Mr. Lawby. “Historically, anytime when prices dropped it was tied to high unemployment and interest rates. It’s not the case today, people are not forced to sell, they are staying with their price.”

So what does it all mean?

Benjamin Tal, deputy chief economist with CIBC World Markets says "stagnation is a good word for what will happen, it’s what we saw in the market from 1992 to 1997,”

The key word in the above sentence is stagnation, not crash!

Wondering if now is the right time to sell?  Give ma a call for a free market analysis or fill out my online form here.

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