Vancouver, BC – October 15, 2013. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 6,498 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC during September, up 43.2 per cent from September 2012. Total sales dollar volume was 55.7 per cent higher than a year ago at $3.49 billion. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $537,458, up 8.8 per cent from September 2012.
"Consumer demand for housing in September was the strongest in four years,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “After declining for most of 2012, BC home sales have increased now for seven consecutive months."
"While a return to a more normal level of demand is good news for buyers and sellers, relatively weak economic conditions and muted provincial job growth will likely limit continued acceleration of home sales over the next few quarters,” added Muir.
Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was up 5.7 per cent to $30 billion, compared to the same period last year. Residential unit sales were up 3.1 per cent to 56,347 units, while the average MLS® residential price was up 2.6 per cent at $532,745.
Subject: Which renovations will improve your home's value?
| Four Rules of Renovating!
1. Don't overbuild for the neighbourhood.
2. Don't spend more than the price range warrants.
3. Older homes return more on renovations than newer ones.
4. Renovate in a hot market.
The areas to focus on;
1. Kitchen - this is the most valuable area. As a general rule, never spend more then 10% of the homes value on a kitchen.
2. Bathrooms - The second most valuable area. As a general rule, never spend more then 5% of the homes value on a bathroom.
When renovating a bathroom;
Expand the size.
Put in double sinks.
Put the toilet in a seperate enclosed area.
Have a seperate tub and shower.
Add new lighting.
Install new cabinets and tops.
Use all new plumbing fixtures.
Which renovations return the greatest yeild?
| Renovations are money pits of one sort or another. Very few will return a dollar-for-dollar return.
The biggest exception to this is when the home has a defect like a very dark living room or a single bathroom. Putting in another window or a skylight will add more light to the room thus improving it value. In the case of the single washroom, adding a second will add immediate value to the home.
Project Possible Max Payback
Attic conversion 75%
Basement conversion 75%
Bathroom Renovation 85%
Bedroom Addition 50%
Deck addition 35%
Den addition 50%
Family Room addition 50%
Front Door - adding new 110%
Home office conversion 75%
Interior doors upgrading 50%
Kitchen renovation 95%
Patio addition 50%
Pool - new 45%
Spa - new 55%
The actual value added will depend on a number of factors, including the age of the home, its price range, its condition, the market, and what's normally done in the area.
Subject: Hottest Summer For Property Sales In Five Years!
| Hottest Real Estate Market in Five Years!
PLUS: Sept HOT Property!
VICTORIA BC - Summer-time real estate sales numbers were the best they've been in Greater Victoria in five years. There was a total of 1,787 sales in June, July and August.
On a monthly scale, total real estate sales in Greater Victoria were up 16.8 per cent in August 2013 over August 2012, the Victoria Real Estate Board reports.
A total of 540 properties sold in August
"I'm very pleased with the August results. MLS® sales are strong and, with 4,593 active listings in all categories at month end, we remain on the cusp of a balanced market," says Shelley Mann, President of the Victoria Real Estate Board.
The BC Real Estate Association defines a balanced market as when the ratio of sales to active listings is between 15 and 20 per cent. At month end, Victoria's ratio for residential properties was 14 per cent.
There were 308 single family homes sold in August, an increase of 28.3 per cent over August 2012, while the median price of $529,950 is up less than one per cent year over year from $526,250. There were 125 condominium sales with a median price of $287,000 and 70 townhomes sold at a median price of $415,000.
"Overall, pricing remains flat and our provincial economist predicts the trend will continue for another year. That said, the year-over-year median price of condos is up 9.2 per cent and the median of townhomes is up 12.5 percent," Mann says. "This will vary between neighbourhoods, which is why I always recommend that consumers consult a REALTOR® for local pricing.
"With interest rates starting to increase, many buyers are locking into preapproved mortgages. These consumers should be purchasing in the next three to four months, so I believe the market will remain steady," Mann says.
Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 20, up 7 over August 2012
Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 288, up 61 over August 2012
Single Family Dwellings sold over $1 million: 17 (2 over $2 million)
Stats Quick Reference
Total Single Family All Areas includes Shawnigan Lake/Malahat, Gulf Islands and Up Island
|HOT PROPERTY ALERT
Open House Wednesday Sept. 4 @ 4-6 pm @ #204-3363 Glasgow Ave. Yes, there is work to do but at this price you'll have a fabulous, spacious 2 bdrm, 2 full bthrm suite w/in-suite laundry, in a pet friendly bldg. w/no age restrictions, secure underground parking, at the end of a quiet cul-de-sac, on a fabulous bus route, walking distance to Thrifty's, Italian Bakery & shops. Call today to view this exciting opportunity!
Call me if you would like to know how the current Real Estate Market affects you or if you know anyone who is looking to buying or selling! You could earn up to $1000!
Visit my website or call me at 250-884-3980
|Stay tuned for the next Newsletter -
How the process works and how to spot great deals!
Bank of Canada Interest Rate Decision - September 4, 2013
The Bank of Canada announced this morning that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 1 per cent. In its accompanying statement, the Bank highlighted that an uncertain global economy is delaying an expected rotation of growth in Canada toward exports and investment. This means that the burden of economic growth will remain on households at a time when most households are deleveraging and looking to slow consumption. All of this adds up to a Canadian economy that will grow below trend in 2013, likely at a rate of around 1.5 per cent. Below trend growth will translate to continued subdued inflation, which the Bank anticipates will return slowly to its 2 per cent target in 2014. As for the Bank's tightening bias, language around the withdrawal of monetary stimulus has been significantly moderated. The Bank anticipates a gradual normalization of policy interest rates as conditions for inflation, growth and household debt normalize.
Rising long-term Canadian interest rates, along with somewhat soft economic growth through the first half of 2013, have taken some urgency out of future monetary policy tightening. In particular, higher long-term rates will further slow growth in household debt via higher mortgage and other key lending rates which will allow the Bank to push increases in its overnight out to late 2014 or early 2015.
Seeking Tax Fairness for Homebuyers
Because housing affordability directly impacts the quality of life of British Columbians, BCREA consistently and regularly recommends that the provincial government minimize the negative impact of the Property Transfer Tax (PTT). That’s why BCREA will put the following recommendations forward during the annual provincial budget consultation process, conducted by the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services.
BCREA recommends the provincial government:
- index the 1% PTT threshold of $525,000 using Statistics Canada's New Housing Price Index, and make adjustments annually, and
- increase the 1% PTT threshold from $200,000 to $525,000, with 2% applying to the remainder of the fair market value.
The PTT has always been applied in the following way: 1% on the first $200,000 of the fair market value of a property, and 2% on the remainder.
Despite the dynamic nature of the housing market, the structure of the PTT has not changed since its introduction in 1987, when it was described as a “wealth tax.” At that time, the average home price was $101,916, and the 2% portion of the tax was expected to apply to only 5% of sales. In 2012, the 2% portion applied to more than 85% of homes sold in the province.
The PTT places an unfair burden on homebuyers, and is by far the highest provincial property transfer tax in the country. While BCREA understands the government’s objective to balance the budget, adjusting the PTT may well stimulate additional activity in the real estate market, encourage spending related to property transactions and would certainly demonstrate an understanding of the important role of real estate and property owners in the provincial economy.
For more information about BCREA's government relations role and other public policy positions, visit www.bcrea.bc.ca/government-relations.
"I support this message!"
Housing Market Picking Up Steam
BCREA 2013 Third Quarter Housing Forecast Update
Vancouver, BC – August 22, 2013. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) released its 2013 Third Quarter Housing Forecast Update today.
BC Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) residential sales are forecast to increase 3.9 per cent to 70,300 units this year, before increasing a further 6.1 per cent to 74,600 units in 2014. The five-year average is 74,600 unit sales, while the ten-year average is 86,800 unit sales. A record 106,300 MLS® residential sales were recorded in 2005.
"After a marked pull back of consumer demand in 2012, the housing market is now transitioning to more elevated home buying activity,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “However, the effect of sluggish employment growth this year is expected to spill over into 2014, limiting housing demand to a 6 per cent increase, with total home sales matching the 5 year average."
"The average MLS® residential price in the province has been revised from remaining unchanged to increasing 3.3 per cent to $531,700 this year. A stronger than expected decline in the inventory of homes for sale has created balanced market conditions in the Lower Mainland, causing home prices to align more closely with overall consumer price inflation,” added Muir. The average MLS® residential price in BC is forecast to increase 2.2 per cent to 543,400 in 2014.
- 30 -
To view the full BCREA Housing Forecast Update, click here.
For more information, please contact:
July Home Sales Highest Since 2007
Vancouver, BC – August 14, 2013. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 7,650 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC for July, up 18 per cent from July of 2012. Total sales dollar volume was 32.8 per cent higher than a year ago at $4.09 billion. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $534,360, up 12.5 per cent from July 2012.
"Home sales in the province posted their strongest July since 2007,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “After six consecutive months of rising consumer demand, it’s now clear that BC housing markets are recovering from tighter lending regulations introduced last year,” added Muir.
"Rising home sales are unlikely to put any significant upward pressure on home prices,” cautioned Muir, “as the inventory of homes for sale is expected to keep pace with demand.” Many potential home sellers that have been holding off for improved market conditions are expected to put their homes on the market to meet the swelling ranks of home buyers.
Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 2.8 per cent to $22.9 billion, compared to the same period last year. Residential unit sales were down 4 per cent to 42,986 units, while the average MLS® residential price was up 1.3 per cent at $531,928.
1. Down Payment: This is any amount greater than 5% of the purchase price of the home. Anything less than a 20% down payment and you will have to get mortgage loan insurance.
2. Deposit: This is due when a contract of Purchase and Sale is written and accepted. This deposit forms part of your down payment with the remainder of the down payment due at closing.
3. Mortgage/Application fee: There can be some fees involved with applications and or mortgage fees, but they are quite rare and will be explained to you before you move forward. And they are usually due to a tough situation where conventional lenders cannot help you.
4. Appraisal Fee: In order to complete a mortgage loan your lender may ask you to do an appraisal and this will usually run between $250-350 + tax, but it can vary according to the location and property type.
5. Mortgage Loan Insurance: If you make less than a 20% down payment, you have a high ratio mortgage. Mortgage insurance lets you buy a home with a minimum of 5% down. This insurance protects the lender by ensuring that they are paid out by the insurer if the borrower defaults. This amount is a % and based off the down payment and mortgage amounts. Expect to pay at least a few thousand dollars if you have a minimum down payment.
NOTE: This is not a fee that is charged up front, standard practice is to add it to the mortgage amount. And you only have to purchase it once for the life of your mortgage.
6. Home Inspection Fee: It is recommended that you have a property inspection for the property as a condition of your Offer to Purcahse. This cost is usually around $500 for a single family home and $350 for a strata condo unit. The inspection looks at all the components of the home and gives you an idea of the condition of the home.
7. Survey (certificate of location): This is done at the buyer’s expense and is sometimes needed as a condition to receive a mortgage. If the survey is more than five years old, you will need to have it updated. If the seller does not provide it the buyer will have to pay. The cost is anywhere from $1000 to $2000 for the survey.
8. Title Insurance: Your lawyer may suggest that you get title insurance. Title Insurance is an insurance policy for the benefit of the lender only, and it's bought at the solicitor at closing. It costs roughly $200-$300.
9. Property Transfer Tax: This tax is 1% on the first $200,000 and 2% on the balance. First time home buyers are exempt from this tax if the purchase price is less than $425,000. There is a partial exemption on amounts between $425,000 and $450,000, however at $450,000 or above the full tax is payable.
NOTE: PTT has to be paid in cash at closing - it can't be added into the mortgage unless you make a smaller down payment.
10. Water tests: The potability of the water should be tested if the home is on a well system. This will ensure that the quality and supply is adequate. This costs is usually between $50-$170 and can be negotiated into the Contract of Purchase and Sale.
11. Septic Tank: If the home has a septic tank, it should be professional inspected to make sure the components are in good working condition. The cost is usually $250-$350 and can be negotiated into the Contract to Purchase.
12. Status Certificate (Condo): This certificate outlines the financial and legal state of the strata corporation. The cost is up to $100.
13. Prepaid Property Taxes and/or Utility Bills: If the seller has paid the property taxes for the year or other costs (such as filling the oil tank), you will need to pay the seller back. This is done at closing time when adjustments take place.
14. Property Insurance: The lender will require that you have contents and property insurance to cover the cost of replacing the home in case of loss. Speak to a home insurance company for costs, they average around $400-$800 depending on the home, location, riders, etc… You will need to have this in place at 12:01am closing day to cover you for loss.
15. Legal fees: Vary depending on which lawyer/notary you use, as well as what work is required from them. Expect to pay at least $700+ for a home purchase (less for a mortgage renewal or refinance).
16. GST: This is the 5% provincial tax cost plus the 2% transitional tax, which is on the purchase price. There are refunds of the gst amount up to $350,000 on a new home. The rebate is 36% of the GST on any price up to $350,000 which equates to 1.8% of the purchase price, with a max rebate of $6300 at $350,000. Between $350,000 and $450,000 the rebate decreases to zero, (for every $10,000 increase in price, the rebate is $600 lower). Over $450,000 there is no rebate.
BC Home Sales Continue on Upward Trend
Vancouver, BC – July 16, 2013. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 7,196 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC in the month of June, up 5.6 per cent from June of 2012. Total sales dollar volume was 11.9 per cent higher at $3.84 billion. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $533,219, up 6 per cent from a year ago.
"BC home sales rose 6.7 per cent from May, on a seasonally adjusted basis, with June being the fourth consecutive month of increasing sales activity,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “Since February, home sales across the province have climbed by 23 per cent, on a seasonally adjusted basis,” added Muir.
On a quarterly basis, MLS® residential sales climbed 15 per cent in the second quarter, while the inventory of homes for sale has moved down 5 per cent over the last two quarters, creating improved market conditions in many regions of the province.
Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 8.2 per cent to $18.8 billion, compared to the same period last year. Residential unit sales were down 7.8 per cent to 35,336 units, while the average MLS® residential price was down 0.4 per cent at $531,401.
SECOND QUARTER STRENGTH IN GREATER VICTORIA REAL ESTATE MARKET
VICTORIA, BC–Greater Victoria real estate sales for May are identical to the same period one year ago: 659 properties sold on the MLS® System.
“We are continuing to see improved consumer confidence in the marketplace,” says Shelley Mann, President of the Victoria Real Estate Board. “Our Members are much busier with showings and writing offers, but say they are working harder to help their clients satisfy stricter lending rules. This quarter is definitely much stronger than the first quarter of 2013.”
Buyers remain price sensitive. “Homeowners who are pricing their properties competitively, not expecting the higher sale prices of 2008, are selling their homes,” Mann says. “With 4,783 active listings, buyers have plenty to choose from. With higher sales volumes and a reasonable inventory level, Greater Victoria continues to edge towards a balanced market.”
There were 384 single family homes sold in May at a median price of $515,000, down 3.4% over May 2012 at $533,000. Condominium sales were 142 at a median price of $289,500 and 68 townhomes sold at a median price of $400,000. “With average and median prices fluctuating on a monthly basis, it’s more important than ever for consumer to consult a REALTOR®,” Mann says.
Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 18, up 3 over May 2012
Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 366, down 7 over May 2012
Single Family Dwellings sold over $1 million: 18 (2 over $2 million)
While the use of average price information can be useful in establishing trends when applied over a period of time, e.g. six months or longer, the Victoria Real Estate Board cautions that an average price does not indicate the actual value of a property in a particular neighbourhood.
If you are looking for specfic information in regards to prices in your area or would like to find out what your home is worth, call me today... 250.884.3980
Housing Market Conditions Improve on the South Coast
Vancouver, BC – May 15, 2013. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 6,904 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC during April, up 1.9 per cent from March on a seasonally adjusted basis, but down 2.2 per cent compared to April 2012. Total sales dollar volume declined 3 per cent to $3.65 billion. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $528,507, down 0.8 per cent from a year ago.
"BC home sales trended higher again in April, with seasonally adjusted unit sales now 8 per cent higher since the beginning of the year," said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. "Market conditions were at or near balanced conditions in Victoria, Vancouver, the Fraser Valley and the North last month, leading to a firming up of home prices." The MLS® Home Price Index edged up 0.7 per cent over the past month in the Lower Mainland, and 1.5 per cent over the past three months.
Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 16.6 per cent to $10.8 billion, compared to the same period last year. Residential unit sales dipped 13.9 per cent to 20,476 units, while the average MLS® residential price was down 3.1 per cent at $529,785.
What does this mean for those looking to buy or sell a home??
With the current market heading into a balanced market the prices with trend upwards slightly as there will be more demand for the current inventory. Those looking for great deals will still be able to find them with the current home inventory high. Those looking to sell a home will be able to get a slightly better price for their home as the demand heats up.
If you are looking to know what the current market value of your home is then please call me. I can do your home evaluation quickly and effectivly so you will get the most money from the sale of your home!
PS... Do you know someone who is thinking about buying or selling? Want to earn up to $1000? Call me and I would love to help you earn some extra cash for helping your family or friends find their dream home!
Summer is just around the corner and it is time to focus on healthy eating, getting out daily for a sweat and enjoy your family and all the joys it brings!
The question most people are asking: How is the real estate market doing?
The market is heating up and that you may have noticed the number of for sale signs that you see popping up on the directional arrows and the lawn signs has risen dramatically.
If you are unsure of the value of your home and would like a free home evaluation, I can help!
The FULL gst rebate on the sale of NEW homes applies to homes worth up to $350,000. There is a gradual phasing out of the rebate between $350,000 and $450,000. The Full rebate is $6300 on a $350,000 home. This rebate is = to 36% of the GST paid.
The most important tip I can give you is to sweat once or more a day... I don't mean from getting out of the seat. It is important for the body to engage in daily activity which will aid in maintaining a healthy weight.
If you are not sure what to do, do something you enjoy! Walk, jog, swim, hike etc...
If you are like me and are limited due to a disability(ruptured disc), buy yourself a pedometer and track how many steps you are getting each day!
I am a huge believer in trying new foods and enjoying the flavour of food!
Teriyaki Turkey Meatballs!
- 1lb extra lean ground turkey
- 6 green onions, chopped fine
- 1 lrg Carrot
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce, or sprinkle on(that's what I do, eye it out)
- 1 cup Bread Crumbs
- 1/4 cup Sesame Seeds
In Large bowl, combine the ingredients, except the sesame seeds. Blend well. Using 2 ounce scoop or a spoon, form the meatballs.
Place on aluminium foil on a baking pan.
Sprinkle meatballs with sesame seeds.
Roast in oven at 375'F for 20mins.
Enjoy the recipe and if you have any recipes or tips etc...Please email me and I will include it in the next newsletter!
PS.... Any real estate questions?? Send me an email or call me! 250.884.3980
Transition Year Expected for BC Housing Market
BCREA 2013 Second Quarter Housing Forecast
Vancouver, BC – May 9, 2013. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) released its 2013 Second Quarter Housing Forecast today.
BC Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) residential sales are forecast to edge up 1.9 per cent to 68,900 units this year, before increasing a further 6.5 per cent to 73,400 units in 2014. The five-year average is 74,600 unit sales, while the ten-year average is 86,800 unit sales. A record 106,300 MLS® residential sales were recorded in 2005.
"Stricter mortgage credit regulation combined with slower economic growth has kept BC home sales at a cyclical low over the past three quarters," said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. "However, a faster growing economy is expected during the second half of the year and through 2014 which will support a growth trend in provincial housing demand."
"The BC average home price forecast is revised upward for 2013, from a decline of 1 per cent to remaining unchanged, as a result of stronger than expected market conditions in Vancouver," added Muir. The average MLS® residential price in BC is forecast at $515,800 this year, before rising 1.7 per cent to $524,500 in 2014.
These reports look at the current systems and structures of the building and advise on the life expectancy of each.
Who does the report?
The regulations allow almost anyone to produce a report. This will take time to change but it is needed as the person providing the report needs to be qualified and competent.
Go for the Money!
What you will want to look at is to see if there is going to be any Special Levies. When? How Much? There will need to be a minimum of 3 financial plans for the Strata as this is a regulatory requirement. This may show an indication of a Strata Fee increase possibly.
What are the important aspects of the plan that you want to look for? The recommendations area of the plan will give you an idea of the issues that may need to be addressed in the near future. This is where you will get an idea of how much money you will possibly need to come up with and timelines for this.
The depreciation report is going to be the gold standard once it is fully phased in. It will be important for you to pay attention to the report so you get an indication of the overall life expectancy of the various systems and when they will need to be replaced and if there will need to be special levies imposed due to a shortfall in funds.
Greater Victoria Residential Real Estate Transitions to a Balanced Market
May 1, 2013
VICTORIA BC - Weighing in on the best April since 2010, Shelley Mann, President of the Victoria Real Estate Board, is cautiously optimistic that the Greater Victoria is back into a balanced market.
"Consumer confidence is increasing," Mann says. "Our total number of sales for April is 615, a 5% increase compared to April 2012 with 586 sales. On the residential side, more properties are selling, and slightly fewer are entering the market, so we are moving from a buyers' market to more balanced market conditions."
Mann's cautions that one month doesn't indicate a market trend, but is encouraged by increased showings by REALTORS®, the number of sales, and comments from other REALTORS® about multiple offers on properties.
Prices remained relatively flat, as predicted by Cameron Muir, Chief Economist of the BC Real Estate Association. There were 367 single family homes sold in April at a median price of $540,000, a 16% increase of homes sold over April 2012. Condominium sales were 149 at a median price of $265,000 and with 62 townhomes sold at a median price of $415,450. There are 4,585 active listings.
Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 15, up 2 over April 2012
Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 352, up 36 over April 2012
Single Family Dwellings sold over $1 million: 30 (5 over $2 million)
Stats Quick Reference
Total Single Family All Areas includes Shawnigan Lake/Malahat, Gulf Islands and Up Island
How can you benefit from the market conditions? I provide a FREE home market evaluation which will give you an idea on the price you can realize from the sale of your home...
This evaluation only takes a few minutes and will benefit you! Call me to find out more! 250.884.3980
PS..... Want to earn up to $1000? Let me know if you have a family member or friend who is looking to buy or sell and I will provide professional service to them. This offer expires within 2 weeks!!!
Listing Property Where One Owner is Deceased
Q – Can this deal complete with the title as is providing she supplies the lawyer with a death certificate? Or does the title need to be changed prior to completion?
A – In theory the deceased owner's interest has passed, on death, to the surviving joint tenant, so only Mrs. Client should be on the listing agreement.
Title can be transferred to the survivor by the filing of the death certificate at any time up to and including completion. However it is a good idea to have it taken care of in advance.
The basic grant can reduce your property tax by as much as $570. The minimum tax payable ($350) ensures that all homeowners (or eligible occupants, which includes an eligible occupant of an eligible apartment, housing unit, land cooperative or multi-dwelling leased parcel) contribute towards the funding of local services such as road maintenance and police protection.
For 2012, the basic grant will be reduced by $5 for each $1,000 of assessed value over $1,285,000, and is eliminated on homes assessed at $1,399,000 or more.
If your property's assessed value is over $1,285,000 but has more than one residence on it, you may still qualify for the home owner grant on one residence.
To be eligible for the grant, you must meet the following criteria:
The grant should be claimed prior to the tax due date, even if you do not pay at that time. The grant is considered unpaid tax until it is claimed. By claiming the grant prior to the due date, you avoid paying a penalty on this portion of the tax.
You must apply for the grant each year after you receive your property tax notice and before December 31. The grant is applied toward the current year's property tax. It does not apply to School Referendum Taxes, arrears, delinquent taxes, penalties, utilities or user fees which may also appear on your tax notice.
If you are over 65, have a disability, or receive a war veteran's allowance, you may be eligible for the Additional grant.
If you or any of your family or friends ever need any real estate services, please keep me in mind.
Arran McLellan - REALTOR®
Pemberton Holmes - Cloverdale
"Not intended to solicit or interfere with existing listings or agency relationships"
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Home makeover shows give you the impression you can transform your house in a few short weeks. Real renovations are nothing like what you see on TV. The expectations of consumers have been changed by the fancy reveals and glamour which TV brings to a renovation project.
The costs on TV aren't realistic. You can't do a complete high-end kitchen reno for $20,000. The TV costs don't always factor in costs such as, donated materials and free labour. Do your research and make a realistic budget for your project. Plan for 20% to 40% mark-up on the labour as you never know what you'll run into. (See below for a chart of costs vs home values realized)
Renovations take a long time. On TV you will see the reno's go from conception to finished project in a few weeks. The timelines for TV are tight and renovations seem to take only days sometimes. Draw up a timeline with a contractor to have realistic expectations. Permits take time to get from city hall so factor in possible delays. Contractors aren't always readily available to start tomorrow and they usually book two to three months out. It is always a good idea to buy your materials ahead of time and give the contractor the ability to purchase the materials that they need if you can't obtain them yourself. Plan the renovations in stages as you don't have to do everything at once.
DIY isn’t as easy as it looks. Watching the hopeless couples on a TV reno show roll up their shelves and do some work makes it look easy. In reality it is a lot harder to do unless you have some experience in the trades. Maybe you have an electrical background or drywalling experience which will save you money. Remember, you can't do it as well as a professional unless you’re a professional!
Paying for the renovation. The option most used is a Line of Credit. You might not have to pay it off right away and usually you just pay interest on the borrowed amount until your done borrowing. It is advisable to save a chunk on money in advance of the project. A high interest savings account inside a TFSA (Tax Free Savings Account) is a good place to put your money as it will be readily available. If you go the route of a line of credit secured against your home you will get a lower interest rate and but you might need to pay $700-$1200 for legal fees and appraisal. Make sure you have the cash flow to make payments and make a deadline to pay it off. Credit from lenders is usually extended if monthly debts are less than 40% of your gross income. If you can't pay the debt right away you can refinance and lock in at a cheap rate. Refinancing with a locked in rate can save you interest up front, shield you from variable-rate risk and pay lump sums based off the prepayment privileges of the lender.
The reno may not add to your home's resale value. On the TV reno shows you will have seen the hosts tell the homeowners that doing a reno will net an increased home value. For example doing a $50,000 reno will add $80,000 to the value of the home. The truth is that your have value will increase by 2/3 of the reno costs. If you do the wrong renovations or make a unpopular design choice the may get no return on your investment, or even decrease the value of the home. Remember that your new kitchen is only considered new if you sell in the next couple of years otherwise it will have no impact on the amount buyers are willing to pay.
Job Costs and Increases in Value!
Cost (appr) Increase in home's value(appr)
Two-story addition - $165,000 $105,000
Master Suite addition - $106,000 $ 62,000
Family Room addition - $81,000 $ 49,000
Basement remodel - $60,000 $ 40,000
Attic bedroom - $58,000 $ 30,000
Major Kitchen remdel - $50,000 $35,000
Bathroom addition - $40,000 $20,000
Home office remodel - $19,000 $13,000
Bathroom remodel - $15,000 $9,000
Deck addition - $10,000 $8,000
Entry door - $1,000 $1,000
This list gives you a glimpse into the approximate cost of renovations (always consult a licensed home contractor for exact costs) and the value they add to your home.
Adding a rental suite to your home always increases the homes value.. So count on at least a door and kitchen reno and you will be on your way (depending on your home setup).
Stay current as to trends and in terms of renovations always be realistic as to the budget, length of time to complete and the extra costs that may come up.
If you have any comments or suggestions please feel free to call or email me.
To your health,
All the figures are approximate values and must be treated as such. Always consult a licensed builder and tax advisor for your unique situation.
I hope you are doing well and enjoying the start to the New Year!
Did you notice that your assessed value was lower than last year? It may have even been lower than the last few years'.
I spoke with Chris Sturrock, a senior appraiser, with BC Assessment and he mentioned that across the board in the residential sector, house prices are back down to 2008-2010 levels.
Chris eluded to the fact that the housing market has corrected and levelled off and this is reflected in house prices and assessments.
You may have noticed little change in your assessment or slight gain if you were in certain areas where there is continual growth.
It is important to realize that housing is a long term investment and should be treated as such as there will be fluctuations in the market in terms of price.
If you are looking to sell your home you would want to have a higher assessed value. This may sound obvious and is. The same is true for those looking to not sell there homes. Lower assessed value would equate to lower property taxes which everyone loves...
If you have any questions, please call me or email me.
Asbestos and YOU!
Asbestos and buildings, how can it affect you? If not handled correctly, people are in danger of inhaling asbestos contaminated air and serious chronic health problems can result.
It is important to have a heighted awareness to asbestos when acquiring, disposing, renovating, and demolishing a property that may have materials that contain asbestos. It is advisable to have an inspection done on a property to determine if there is asbestos in advance of undertaking any of the above mentioned activities. Costs to remove asbestos can be very substantial.
WorkSafe BC outlines those buildings older than 1990 have a potential of containing asbestos. Materials that can contain asbestos include but are not limited to, insulations; shingles and felt for roofing; exterior siding; pipe and boiler covering; compounds and cement, such as caulk, putty, roof patching, furnace cement; drywall; texture coat; ceiling tiles; vinyl floor tiles; and wiring. For more information on this check out WorkSafe BC’s website... www.hiddenkiller.ca