Real Estate Blog

When times are tough, we sadly see all sorts of discount brokerages popping up. Who wouldn't want to save money when they have to sell their home in a depressed market?

However, are you really going to save money? The old adage "you get what you pay for" isn't that out-dated.

We recently sold a home to a person listed with a discount brokerage. The home was listed at $419,000. Our clients told us that they didn't want to go higher than $410,000 on the property.

We went in with a lowball first offer - $380,000, and with a term that we (the brokerage) be paid a commission of 4% on the first $100,000 and 1.5% on the balance.

We presented the offer in person to the client and he immediately said "oh, I was hoping to get $385,000 in my pocket and

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In spite of the new mortgage qualification rules, now is an excellent time to get into the real estate market! WHY???

When it comes to the mortgage side of things, rates are at an all time low.  Currently, we can get a 5 year fixed term rate of 2.34%.  If we look at a $400,000 mortgage, the very first payment has more money going to the principal than toward interest. The monthly payment would be $1,760.15.  $983.93 goes directly to the principal and $776.22 goes toward interest.  The amount going toward the principal increases on every payment after that as well.  This is incredible!  10 years ago, a 5 year interest rate sat at about 5%.  The monthly payment on that would have been $2,326.42 and only $676.85 was applied to the principal on the very

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Thanks to Chris and Alan Morhun with A Buyer's Choice Home Inspections for this article.

Winter – Are You Prepared?

It is best to be prepared and it won’t be long before temperatures start to drop and the cold grip of winter will be upon us. Here are some fall maintenance tasks to keep in mind that will help to prepare your home for the onset of winter.

  • If you have not already made the call, schedule an appointment with your furnace maintenance company for your annual inspection / maintenance visit for the natural gas, propane or oil burning appliances in the home. Any natural gas and propane fireplaces can also be inspected at this time.
  • Check/change your furnace filter and check air ducts and air filter systems. Remove the interior vent
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If you are getting a mortgage as a part of the purchase of your next home you need to look as some of the options offered by lenders to give you the best combination of features that suits your needs.

Here are some of the things that you should consider as a part of your due diligence before you sign the mortgage commitment letter.

1.       Blend and extend

If you have an existing mortgage that has a good interest rate that you would like to carry forward into another home, you may want to use this option to blend the interest rate that you have with the new rate being offered together with (or without) the option of extending the term to give you lower mortgage payments for a greater locked-in period. Naturally this option makes the most sense

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Buying and Selling Homes in a soft Market

Here we go again.

Calgary has been hit by another cyclical downturn in the oil industry.

However, all is not lost. We know that what goes down must come up and that at some point prices will rise again.

We also know that a soft market creates skittishness among buyers and sellers and therein lies opportunity.

We all look for value in the market and we know that the secret to uncovering value is to ‘buy low and sell high’. Unfortunately, that is the very time that it is most difficult to take action.

The question is should you take advantage of the downturn to improve your situation?

Naturally, as with any market condition, individual situations will favour taking action or not.

For,

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You Are Invited! Real Estate off the Record: Uncensored Advice on Buying, Selling and Investing

If a REALTOR®, Mortgage Specialist or Lawyer were to buy or sell their own home, how would they maximize their return and minimize their risk?

On Saturday, April 23, 2016, CIR REALTY will be hosting a FREE, unconventional seminar called Real Estate off the Record - Uncensored Advice on Buying Selling and Investing. Featured speakers include CIR REALTY, TD Canada Trust and Kahane Law Office.

In addition to the seminar, there will be a small homeowners tradeshow before the event (more great chances to win stuff!) as well as an optional opportunity to attend a land investing seminar with

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Appreciation of Real Estate

We hear from people from to time that they believe that Real Estate is a poor investment. They tell us about market conditions, prospects of job losses and an uncertain economic future.

These concerns are generally blown out of proportion and don’t reflect the reality of Real Estate values.

The Real Estate Board in Calgary keeps detailed records of Real Estate transactions and can provide comparisons over the broad market by type of property, by subdivision or by the entire universe of homes within the area.

What these records show is a rising trend in prices demonstrating the long term benefit of owning Real Estate.

If you are interested in taking a look at the statistical record for your area or type of home or

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