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- 4 in 10 households spend more than 30 percent of their pre-tax income on rent, this is above the commonly accepted affordability threshold.

Talk to anyone renting a place in a large city like Toronto or Vancouver, and you'll probably hear a common complaint: Rental units are hard to find and very expensive when you do.
The most recent comprehensive market survey by the Canada Mortgage Housing Corp. would seem to back up those claims. According to CMHC's rental market report published in late fall 2018, the national vacancy rate has dropped to 2.4 per cent, while the average rent is $987.
But a closer look at the report paints a stark picture in the larger markets. The largest increases in average rent for two-bedroom apartments from the previous year were in B.C., more specifically in Kelowna (+9.4 per cent), Victoria (+7.6 per cent), Abbotsford-Mission (+8.2 per cent) and Vancouver (+5.5 per cent).
Montreal, Calgary and Edmonton saw increases in rent by 2.8 per cent, 1.5 per cent and 1.3 per cent respectively
The average rent for a two-bedroom condo in Toronto topped the list at $2,393 while in Vancouver it was $2,034. Montreal, Calgary and Edmonton all had average rents at $1,208, 1,533 and $1,392 respectively.
Meanwhile, the lowest rental condominium vacancy rates were observed in Vancouver (0.3%), Victoria (0.4%), Kelowna (0.6%), Toronto (0.7%) and Hamilton (0.9%).
Article sourced from Dominion Lending Centres - 2019 Special Edition - The Mortgage Annual
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Here is a great tool that everyone looking for a property and a mortgage should have.
My Mortgage Toolbox is a new mobile app from Dominion Lending Centres designed to be a pocket-sized mortgage guide for everyday Canadians. A first-of-its-kind for the industry, the app makes it easy for consumers to find a mortgage broker nearest them and get the best mortgage product at the lowest rate available.
My Mortgage Toolbox guides the users while taking away all the stress of getting a mortgage.

Some of the feature of the app include:
• Affordability Calculator
• Minimum Down Payment Calculator
• Total Monthly Ownership Calculator
• Closing Cost Calculator
• A Stress Test Tool to calculate affordability
• Beautiful graphs and illustrations
The app has also been translated into several languages including English, French, Spanish Chinese and Hindi.
The My Mortgage Toolbox app is available for Apple and Android devices starting today, click here: https://www.dlcapp.ca/?lang=en
For more information about Dominion Lending Centres visit www.dominionlending.ca
If you wish to talk to a Mortgage Professional, we recommend contacting Linda Fleming or Matt Robinson at 604-852-1703.
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I have been watching this case for couple of years. I must say, the latest information to unfold has brought some clarity into an otherwise confusing issue of property disclosure.

Murder on B.C. property didn’t need to be disclosed before sale, court rules.

The Buyer had tried to break contract after learning a man with ties to crime had been murdered there.
A Vancouver woman has won her appeal and will not have to pay damages after she failed to tell a homebuyer that someone had been murdered on the sidewalk of her property.
The BC Court of Appeal on Tuesday reversed a lower court ruling that had said Mei Zhen Wang had misrepresented the sale of her $6.1-million Shaughnessy mansion.
Justice Mary V. Newbury wrote in the decision that Wang could not have known that the home buyer, Feng Yun Shao, would have any “sensitivity” to the killing of her son-in-law, Raymond Huang, in 2007 and that that did not alter the quality of the home or its usefulness.
Read the full article here: https://bit.ly/2XPFfcJ
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Here's an idea of what the current real estate statistics in Abbotsford for the month of March 2019.

Residential Detached in Abbotsford
Average sale price was $817,639, down from March 2018's average sale price of $836,591.
Average sale price was $464,450, down from March 2018's average sale price of $519,021.
Average sale price was $305,268, down from March 2018's average sale price of $333,463.
Residential Detached in Chilliwack.
Average sale price was $651,024, down from March 2018's average sale price of $660,427.
Average sale price was $449,161, down from March 2018's average sale price of $479,029.
Average sale price was $245,210, down from March 2018's average sale price of $249,648.

If you wish to receive more detailed stats, reply to this email with your request.
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I'm sharing a good article I read in The Vancouver Sun...

Canadians are ramping up borrowing against their homes even as the real estate market slumps, exposing the country’s financial system to vulnerabilities, rating company DBRS said.
Home equity lines of credit, or Helocs, reached a record $243 billion as of Oct. 31, or 11.3 per cent of total household credit, the highest share since mid-2015, analysts including Robert Colangelo said in a report Thursday. Borrowing to fund everything from home renovations to car purchases has grown faster than residential mortgages since 2017, and undrawn commitments at the large Canadian banks stood at $120 billion.
“The flexibility of Helocs could increase financial system vulnerabilities,” the analysts said. “In the event of a correction, borrowers could find themselves with a debt load that exceeds the value of their home, which is often referred to as negative equity.”
In addition, Heloc borrowing may also make it more difficult for lenders to identify emerging credit problems, because borrowers can use Helocs to manage increases in their debt loads by consolidating high-interest loans into a secured credit line that charges a lower interest rate, according to the report.
Toronto-Dominion Bank has the largest exposure to Helocs at about 39 per cent, followed by Royal Bank of Canada at 18 per cent and the other large banks averaging 11 per cent, according to the report.
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10 Ways to Prep Your Home for Sale
With the high inventory of homes on the market today, home buyers can afford to be choosy. Buyers are looking for the best, so a home for sale can easily slip through the cracks if it's not in pristine condition. Use these 10 tips to whip your home into shape and wow potential buyers.
  • Improve your landscaping. Curb appeal is crucial to a good first impression, so make sure your home's lawn is immaculate. Mow the lawn, prune the bushes, weed the garden and plant flowers.
  • Clean the outside. A sloppy exterior will make buyers think you've slacked off on interior maintenance as well. Be sure to clean the gutters and pressure wash your home's siding.
  • Make repairs. In a buyer's market, you want your home to be in the best condition possible. Take care of major defects like broken windows or a leaky roof that could discourage buyers.
  • Make the front door inviting, but a new Welcome mat. A fresh coat of paint, especially in a color that contrasts with the home, will make the front door stand out. Replace faded house numbers so buyers can see them from the curb.
  • Remove clutter and depersonalize. Buyers want to envision their belongings in your home. Clean up by renting a storage unit for knickknacks, photos, extra furniture and other personal items.
  • Organize closets and drawers. Messy closets give the appearance that your home doesn't have enough storage space.
  • Make every surface shine. From ceiling fans to floors and everything in between, clean your home until it sparkles.
  • Take color down a notch. You might like your lime-green bedroom, but it may sour buyers. Paint your walls a neutral color that will appeal to a wide range of buyers.
  • Eliminate bad odors. Hide the litter box and spray air neutralizer throughout your home. When showing the home, fill it with inviting smells by putting out fresh flowers and baking a batch of cookies.
Article: https://www.hgtv.com/design/real-estate/10-ways-to-prep-your-home-for-sale
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Federal budget 2019: What to know about the new CMHC mortgage incentive

- article from Global News

Arguably the most talked-about measure of the Liberals’ latest federal budget is the First-Time Home Buyer Incentive.

Under the plan, the government would help some first-time buyers by advancing up to 10 per cent of the purchase price of a home so they can take out a smaller mortgage and keep monthly payments lower.

The program would be administered by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC), the crown corporation that insures most Canadian mortgages on homes purchased with a down payment of less than 20 per cent of the price. Indeed, the new incentive would only be available for CMHC-insured mortgages.

There are number of other caveats. Buyers must pony up their own cash for a down payment — at least five per cent of the home price. And they must have a household income below $120,000 a year. Also, the amount of the insured mortgage plus the CMHC incentive would be capped at four times the home buyers’ annual incomes, or up to $480,000.

That means the most expensive home you can hope to buy under the plan would be worth somewhere between $500,000 and $600,000, depending on the size of your down payment.

The CMHC would give out up to $1.25 billion in incentives over three years starting in September. Buyers of newly-constructed homes would get 10 per cent of the home price, while those purchasing an existing property would get five per cent.

That’s what we know about the program for now. But there are a number of missing details and bigger questions surrounding the proposal:
How exactly will you need to repay the money? How exactly will your income be assessed? How would the new policy impact home prices? These topics and more are discussed on the Global News article here:  https://globalnews.ca/news/5075888/federal-budget-2019-cmhc-shared-equity-mortgage/

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Recently, we've been asked a few times about Bridge Financing. So I have asked a trusted Mortgage Planner, Matt Robinson from Dominion Lending Centres to help us explain how Bridge Financing works. If you have any questions, please feel free reply to this email, or see below the article for Matt's contact info. 
Bridge Financing
It’s unlikely that the first home you buy will be the home you stay in forever. At some point, you may wish to sell and buy a new home. Sometimes clients find themselves in a situation where the closing date for the home they’re purchasing is before the closing date of the home they’re selling. This is where bridge financing comes in.

Bridge financing is a tool that can allow a borrower to complete & take possession of a new home prior to completing the sale of their existing home.

As the primary trigger for bridge financing is a gap in dates between the purchase (of the new property) and the sale (of the current property), there must be a firm sale agreement (subject free) on your existing residence to secure bridge financing approval.

Most lenders will provide bridge financing with this subject free offer on your existing home to “bridge” that timeline gap.

To provide you with an example, let’s say you are purchasing a $750,000 home and you made a $25,000 deposit, but you have $150,000 of equity in your existing home you want to use as a down payment. The issue being your purchase completes April 15th and the sale of your existing home does not complete until June 10th. In this situation you would need to bridge $125,000 ($150,000 down payment - $25,000 deposit = $125,000 bridge financing) for 56 days.

Bridge financing often comes at rates similar to a line of credit in the Prime plus 2.00% - 3.00% range. While the interest rate on the bridge is higher than a typical mortgage rate, it will only be charged for a short amount of time.

If you find yourself in a situation where you don’t have a subject free offer on your home, then you would need Interim financing. Interim financing is a more expensive route and a topic for another day.

Matt Robinson, AMP, MBI | Mortgage Planner
Dominion Lending Centres - A Better Way
201-2600 Gladys Avenue, Abbotsford, BC V2S 0E9
Office: 604.852.1703
Better Choice - Better Advice - Better Rates....a Better Way
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The British Columbia government says it has launched Canada’s first registry aimed at cracking down on pre-sale property flipping and tax evasion in B.C.’s real estate market.

The Ministry of Finance says the Condo and Strata Assignment Integrity Register will improve fairness and transparency in property transactions.

Finance Minister Carol James says in a news release that the register will take “real action to moderate the condo market,” and is already starting to see results in Metro Vancouver.

Condo developers will be required to securely gather and report the identity and citizenship of anyone completing a contract assignment in a project.

A contract assignment occurs when a buyer sells, or “flips,” their purchase contract of a condo to another buyer, often at a higher price, before construction of the building is complete.

Currently flipping can occur without any oversight and the province says the practice has been a factor in raising real estate prices while facilitating tax evasion when capital gains and other taxes are not applied.

“For too long, speculators and tax evaders have been taking advantage of loopholes in our real estate market, driving up prices and shutting British Columbians out of the market,” James says in the news release.

The finance ministry says it’s unknown how many pre-sale property flips occur each year because the transactions aren’t reported.

Developers are now required to collect and record assignment information and file a report each quarter, with the first due April 30, covering the period from Jan. 1 to March 31, 2019.

“The B.C. government will use this information to ensure that people who assign condos are paying the appropriate income tax, capital gains and property transfer tax,” the release says.

The filing fee per assignment is $195, which the government says is a small fraction of the cost of flipping a condo unit.

The register is one part of the New Democrat government’s 30-Point Housing Plan to address housing affordability.

Article: Vancouver Sun https://goo.gl/uC58Jb

Tibor Bogdan

*Personal Real Estate Corporation
Sutton Showplace Realty
cell: 604-855-2521
TF: 1-877-858-2408

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Here's an interesting article I read this week.

Son evicts mom who paid down payment, contributed to mortgage on shared house

A son and mother who bought an Abbotsford house together have been ordered to sell the shared residence after he evicted her, claiming the home was his – although she made the down payment and contributed toward the mortgage.
B.C. Supreme Court Justice Christopher Grauer said Anne Iberg and Russell Gordon Claridge have had a strained relationship for some time.
Since the eviction, Grauer said in a Feb. 12 decision, “they have been fully estranged, and it is clear that sharing the same residence is no longer practicable.”
In June 2008, Iberg, 75, paid more than $100,000 towards the purchase of a house to live in with Claridge, the ruling said. She also paid significant sums for furniture and appliances in two suites in the house and for landscaping.
Claridge, said the court, contributed no money of his own toward the purchase, but did pay equally with his mother towards the mortgage payments and expenses.
Iberg testified that she understood they would be joint owners, each living in their own suite.
They had shared the house for a decade but on Feb 26, 2018, Claridge served his mother with a two-month notice to end tenancy for landlord’s use of property.
“He said that he did so because he had a new child on the way, and wanted to live in the larger upstairs suite, switching with his mother, an idea she had raised herself,” Grauer said.
When she missed her contribution to the March 2018 mortgage payment, the first such instance, Claridge served a 10-day notice to end tenancy for unpaid rent.
Iberg testified she realized only then that she had signed the assignment of purchase contract in favour of her son. Soon after, she also realized she had apparently signed a residential tenancy agreement with her son as landlord, she said.
“There is no doubt that she signed the documents,” Grauer said.
Claridge claimed the money was a gift – a condition required by the lender – and that the house is his and that he was entitled to evict his mother.
“This would leave Mrs. Iberg with nothing after a lifetime of supporting her son,” Grauer said in his ruling.
Grauer ruled Iberg should receive $130,000 to reflect what she had put into the property and that any equity left from the payout of a first mortgage on the house should be divided equally. Always be fully aware of everything you sign and obtain professional and legal advise...especially when purchasing property with the intention of being joint tenants.

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