Advantages of Putting 20% Down on Your Home

Is it possible to have a down payment strategy in today’s sizzling Canadian real estate market? From the Prairies to Atlantic Canada, it is clear that all kinds of residential properties are rising in value. And while there are obvious advantages of putting 20% down on your home, current conditions are posing challenges to many homebuyers.

When you factor in higher interest rates, rampant price inflation, and accelerating price growth for single-family homes and condominium units alike, it can be a challenge for prospective homebuyers to find a place.

One of the biggest hurdles for buyers to overcome is the down payment.

According to the federal government’s rules, homebuyers need a minimum of five per cent down…

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If your family home lacks space but you don’t want to move, you’ll be joining thousands of other Canadians who have chosen to renovate their properties. Whether you’re adding an extension, overhauling your kitchen, or knocking down walls to create better flow, you can likely count on one thing: you’re about to embark on an expensive project. Don’t fret if your dreams are bigger than your budget—there are a lot of ways to finance home renovations. While it may be tempting to borrow money, just remember you’ll have to pay that loan back, so be sure to make a plan that factors in the potential of further interest rate increases. Here’s how you can pay for upgrades to your property.

1. Take out a personal loan or borrow from family and friends 

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Rising interest rates and housing market

The Bank of Canada (BoC) has said it will be use its monetary policy to tamp down inflation, which currently sits at a 30-year high, joining the chorus of central banks worldwide trying to grapple with the rapidly escalating cost of living. So far this year, the BoC has already moved forward with rising interest rates three times, and Governor Tiff Macklem is preparing the financial market for more quantitative tightening in upcoming policy meetings.

But while the objective is to garner a stranglehold on a surging consumer price index (CPI) and producer price index (PPI), rate hikes will lead to financial pain for borrowers, investors and homebuyers.

Indeed, the Canadian real estate market is seeing the effects of a…

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During those beautiful summer nights, it doesn’t matter where you are in Canada, you want to be outside. It’s natural, and let’s face it, the past few years have driven many to upgrade their own backyard retreats, so you’ve got a good reason to be out and about in your own space. 

Upcycling and repurpose trends show no sign of abating, and we’ve already seen signs of the backyard undergoing radical redesigns, adding features like pizza ovens, outdoor kitchens, and bars. Why not extend that idea and bring your home theatre outside? What says summer better than a drive-in (or walk-in) movie night? In the  spirit of the popular staycation trend, let’s look at how you can set up a backyard movie night. 

The scale is up to you. It can be as simple as…

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How Does Your Credit Score Affect Your Mortgage Interest Rate

It takes credit to build credit ­– most of us have heard this at some point in our early years of adulthood. Some of us heard it when we got our first credit card; others when they went to apply for a loan of some type and realized they didn’t have a credit score. The crux is that while it takes credit to build credit, it also takes credit to destroy credit. So, what exactly is “credit” when it comes to finances, and how does your credit score affect your mortgage interest rate?

Credit is essentially a numbering system that gauges how likely you are to repay borrowed money. The higher your score, the ‘safer’ you seem to lenders, and the lower your score, the ‘riskier’ you are.

The first step to building your credit is to…

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REALTORS® have been conducting open houses for decades. They’re an opportunity for real estate professionals to grow their business, network with other agents, and meet with potential buyers. But over the years, open house culture has shifted. 

Open houses used to be simple—a real estate professional would promote the event, have visitors sign-in, offer brochures and marketing materials, and chat and mingle with potential buyers, agents, and visitors. Now, REALTORS® have adapted to the changing expectations of clients and created open houses that are more of a social event, providing benefits to everyone in attendance. 

Photo by Zac Gudakov on Unsplash

The benefits of open houses

In a competitive market, an open house is an opportunity…

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The Canadian housing market hasn’t seen a home sales situation like this since the summer of 2020.

National home sales dropped by 12.6% between March and April and actual (not seasonally adjusted) sales activity was down 25.7% from the record highs we saw in April 2021, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA).

Sales were down in 80% of Canadian markets in April 2022, save for Montreal, Halifax-Dartmouth and Victoria, B.C.

Why are home sales down?

“Housing markets in many parts of Canada have cooled off pretty sharply over the last two months, in line with a jump in interest rates and buyer fatigue,” said Jill Oudil, Chair of CREA. “For buyers, this slowdown could mean more time to consider options in the market. For…

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Bank of Canada Interest Rate Announcement Raises It Another 0.5% on June 1

This morning’s interest rate announcement by the Bank of Canada reveals another 50-basis-point hike to the key rate, bringing it up to 1.5 per cent. This is the third in a series of increases expected in 2022, with the year kicking off at a low of 0.25 per cent, followed by a 0.25-per-cent bump in March and another 0.5-per-cent increase in April. Today’s increase makes the second time in the last 25 years that the Bank has implemented back-to-back increases of 50 basis points. The move appears to be having a cooling effect on hot Canadian housing markets, with Toronto and Vancouver sowing some signs of cooling. The Bank said it will use its monetary policy tools to ease…

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Non-Resident Buyer Bans

For years, even before the coronavirus pandemic, many public policymakers and housing advocates claimed that foreign investors contributed to the skyrocketing cost of home ownership in Toronto and Vancouver. At a time when Canadian real estate prices have skyrocketed since the beginning of the COVID-19 public health crisis, lawmakers are looking closely as possible solutions, with some suggesting non-resident buyer bans could cool the hot market.

According to the latest data from Statistics Canada, non-resident owners account for an average of nearly three per cent of housing stock. This is up from the pre-pandemic rate of 2.3 per cent.

Where are foreign investors dropping their capital in the Canadian real estate market?…

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