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Happy Hispanic Couple In Front of New Home And Sold Real Estate Sign Showing Off Their House Keys.

 

Thinking of buying your first home? If so, it may be time to get on with it, especially considering the possibility that interest rates will rise. Using government incentive programs that encourage first time homebuyers to enter the real estate market, you can realize additional savings. And, mortgage financing has been almost free for some time, but economic signals point to those costs rising.

 

Mortgage rates may increase

 

Several factors are threatening to push Canadian mortgage rates higher even as the Bank of Canada tries to hold its overnight lending rate down. Fixed mortgage rates are linked to long-term Canadian government bond yields, which are tied to U.S. bond yields. Those rates have risen since September as investors have come to expect the U.S. Federal Reserve to boost rates based on the U.S. economy.

 

Borrow from yourself

 

The Canadian government’s Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP) allows first time home buyers to borrow up to $25,000 from their RRSP for a down payment to buy or build a qualified home, tax-free. If you purchase with someone who is also a first time homebuyer, including your spouse, you can both access $25,000 from your RRSP for a combined total of $50,000.

 

The HBP is considered a loan, so if you participate in the Plan, you must repay the amount you withdrew within a 15-year period, in the amount of 1/15 per year. If you repay less than that amount, the difference is added to your taxable income and you are taxed at the applicable rate.

 

Reduce your income tax

 

The federal Home Buyers’ Tax Credit helps recover closing costs (legal expenses, inspections, land transfer taxes) so you can save more for money for a down payment. At current taxation rates, it works out to a rebate of $750.

 

If you buy in Ontario, there is another rebate of up to $2,000 available to help offset the land transfer tax. In Toronto, you can also receive a rebate up to $3,725 for municipal land transfer taxes.

 

With the current economic uncertainty and the advantages of government incentive programs, now may be the right time for first time home buyers to lock in a mortgage at the low rates and buy a home.

The post First Time Homebuyers Government Incentive Programs appeared first on Team Realty.

Source: Blog

“Don’t wait to buy land, buy land and wait” – Will Rogers

 

 

Income Properties: Are you Ready? 

Owning a rental property may seem like a licence to print money.  Interest rates are low, the Ottawa Real Estate Market is stable …what could be easier?  Buy a property, lease it, collect cheques and plan your retirement.  But…before purchasing an income property, you should be aware of the benefits and drawbacks.

 

Advantages of Income Properties:

You pay less tax.

Because your secondary property is a business, you can deduct certain expenses from your income (mortgage interest, property taxes, insurance, maintenance/upgrades, property management and utility bills) and reduce your taxes.  Meet with an accountant or financial adviser to discuss your situation.

 

Rental cheques provide a steady monthly income

Other kinds of investments may pay out less often or income may be less predictable.  For a rental property, answer this question: when you subtract your mortgage and operating costs, will the property generate a steady monthly income?

 

The value of your investment can increase

Historically, property values rise and the rental income increases over time.   Don Campbell, senior analyst at the Real Estate Investment Network in Vancouver, believes “a good piece of real estate is like a blue chip stock. It won’t make you rich overnight, but it will perform well.”

 

You may be able to deduct losses for tax purposes

If expenses exceed rental income, you may be able to deduct that loss from other sources of income.  An accountant can help you figure out the tax and estate planning repercussions.

 

Income Properties: Make sure you’re ready! 

 

You accept the responsibilities and challenges of property management

Rentals need regular maintenance and repairs – sometimes on an emergency basis.  Filling vacancies can be expensive and time consuming.  Tenants can be challenging, especially if they don’t pay their rent and you need the money.  You have to decide if you want to invest “sweat equity” and manage the property or hire a landlord.

 

Real Estate Prices and Setting Realistic Expectations

The rental property market can be volatile.  “If the unemployment rate spikes or real estate prices collapse, then your income property investment might run into difficulties as well,” says Mr. Milevsky of York University’s Schulich School of Business.  The key is location, location, location.  Select an area that is expecting employment and population growth to ensure long term demand is good.  Talk to your realtor about neighbourhood demographics and average rent in the area to ensure anticipated rental income is appropriate for the location.

Home buyers can save money on their mortgage buying a multi-unit building such as a duplex or triplex, living in one unit and renting out the others. If you are considering downsizing in the coming years, buying a condo or townhouse as a rental property can be a great way to plan for the future.

 

It may be difficult to finance the purchase

In most cases you must have a down payment of at least 20% when you buy a second property.  Meet with your mortgage broker before you start hunting for an investment property, it will save you precious time and energy in the long run!

 

Questions?  Talk to one of our experienced realtors, we’re here to help.

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Source: Blog

Home buyers Ottawa Real EstateReal estate has undoubtedly become one of the biggest industries in the world.  Buying and selling of real estate property are obviously major financial undertakings for anyone and these transactions need to be executed in a professional way. With this in mind, working with a REALTOR® is crucial in selling or buying deal of real estate property.

In Ottawa, REALTORS® have their own professional association known as the Ottawa Real Estate Board. From this association, our fully trained REALTORS® have insider access to MLS statistics about real estate activity, sales of property, the median price and market conditions. Since the interpretation of these statistics is best known to them, then REALTORS® are crucial professionals in any buying or selling deal. This is because they assist a client in proper interpretation of these coded statistics and their proper implementation.

For Home Buyers, Real estate agents provide credible information about potential real estate property matches.   A great real estate agent will ask the right questions to help buyers choose the right home at the right price, in a neighbourhood that will work best for them.  They  spare clients a lot of time by linking them to potential properties and sellers quickly. REALTORS® also help buyers to acquire property at the best possible price.  Since Real Estate agents in Ottawa know the prices in the market, they are able to negotiate with sellers for the lowest prices possible. Ultimately, buying property becomes an easy job as realtors seal deals competently and professionally.  Realtors are therefore very important parties in buying or selling deals due to their vast knowledge of real estate business.

Thinking of Buying in the Ottawa area?  Once of our trained Real Estate Representatives would be delighted to assist.  Please contact us for details.

Source: Blog

How Google Sunroof Works

Employing the high-resolution aerial mapping used by Google Earth, Project Sunroof calculates the amount of sunlight reaching your roof to assess its potential for solar power.  It takes a variety of factors into account including local weather conditions, shade from nearby trees and buildings and sun positions throughout the year.  The tool combines this information with data from your household’s monthly electricity bill, factors in panel orientation and tilt to the roof surface to calculate average monthly and annual solar radiation, recommends the size of solar installation needed and estimates the cost to purchase or lease the hardware as well as the amount that could be saved with solar panels.

The tool is only available in the San Francisco Bay Area, Fresno and Boston, however, should Google decide to expand that coverage, they have ample capital reserves to act quickly.  They might offer serious competition to the Australian Photovoltaic Institute’s Live Solar Potential Tool, which currently provides similar services.

How Google Sunroof is Changing Homeowners’ Costs

Photovoltaic (PV) solar panels harness the power of the sun by allowing photons, or particles of light, to knock electrons free from atoms, generating a flow of electricity.  The electric current can power your home’s appliances or be put back into the grid.  Google Sunroof has developed a tool to help homeowners assess the solar power potential of their roof.

Improvements to Photovoltaic Technology

In the 1980′s photovoltaics consumed more energy than they produced over their lifetime.  Now the energy return ratio (ERR) on solar panels has improved exponentially. According to Professional Engineering magazine, the energy payback times (EPBT), the time it takes to produce all the energy used in their lifespan, is currently are between 6 months and 2 years.  And, with life cycles of 30 years, their ERR is 60:1 and 15:1.  In other words, solar panels produce 15 – 60 times the energy required to make them.

Advantages of Net Metering

Since their energy source is the sun, solar panels produce “clean” electricity, without emitting carbon.  And, many locations, including Ontario, offer “Net Metering” which means the utility credits a homeowner for solar energy that is not consumed by the home.  You send the excess electricity you generate to the local distribution system for a credit toward future energy costs. In essence, it’s a “trade” of electricity you supply against electricity you consume.

Source: Blog

Team - August 2015 Market update graphic-final


Check out the latest Ottawa Real Estate Statistics from the Ottawa Real Estate Board

The summer real estate market has been strong in the Ottawa area, as we head into fall we’ll keep you updated on the latest Ottawa Real Estate market news!  Are you interested in a specific neighbourhood?  Please contact us! We have the latest Ottawa neighbourhood statistics available.

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Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,279 residential properties in August through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 1,200 in August 2014, an increase of 6.6 per cent. The five-year average for August sales is 1,234.

“Ottawa Real Estate Board members had a busy August, with units sold coming in higher than the five-year average and a healthy increase from last year’s sales,” says David Oikle, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board. “In addition to an increase in units sold, inventory levels of residential and condominium properties dropped by 5.3 per cent since last month, and cumulative days on the market was an average of 89 days.”

August’s sales included 259 in the condominium property class, and 1,020 in the residential property class. The condominium property class includes any property, regardless of style (i.e. detached, semi-detached, apartment, stacked etc.), which is registered as a condominium, as well as properties which are co-operatives, life leases and timeshares. The residential property class includes all other residential properties.

The average sale price of a residential-class property sold in August in the Ottawa area was $379,946, a decrease of 0.1 per cent over August 2014. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $244,801, a decrease of 7.3 per cent over August 2014. The Board cautions that average sale price information can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The average sale price is calculated based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold.

“It is important to note that the increase in units sold is for both residential and condominium properties,” says Oikle. “Also, we continue to see an increase in the number of condominium units sold in comparison to 2014, and the year-to-date condominium sales are now close to on par with last year.”

“The majority of buyers in Ottawa continue to buy properties in the $300,000 to $400,000 price range, closely followed by the $200,000 to $300,000 range,” says Oikle. “In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB members assisted clients with renting 295 properties in August, and over 2,000 since the beginning of the year.”

Source: Blog