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Archive for July, 2016

geo 11Sometimes it can be a challenge to understand a client’s entire list of needs as it relates to an area they want to live in. This can sometimes simply be chalked up to political correctness and while things like ethnicity in an area or the languages spoken may really matter to the client, they may beat around the bush on the topic.

You want to help your buyer make a deal so it is important to give your client all the information they need to make an informed decision about a neighbourhood.

While what is in a particular community (transportation, schools, amenities) matter to people, what matters even more in many cases is who lives in a community. Family make-up, cultural cohesion, even similar backgrounds may be important.

Your buyer likely wants to know things like:

  • Percentage of homeowners vs renters – some may want to live in an area that is more populated by homeowners while others may want to rent out all or some of their property so this data really matters.
  • Income ranges in the area
  • Education level of families – people want to live amongst people like themselves so education level of families is important to many buyers.
  • Types of families – mature, young families, seniors etc…
  • Age ranges of people in the community
  • Race, religion and languages spoken in the community and more… This is a big one and while some may not come out and ask you this information – it should be presented for consideration.

Preparing a neighbourhood demographics report for your client is a great way to share the demographic information with them in a way that they can review it with their family at home. Give them everything. The more you give, the more value you provide in your service because you are helping them to make the most informed buying decision as it relates to the property they are interested in.

GeoWarehouse has the tools to give you clients more, including access to neighbourhood demographics.

Find out more at www.geowarehouse.ca.

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geo1Whether you are representing a buyer or a seller, if a condo is involved you want to read this blog. For the party who buys the condo, their lawyer will request a condo certificate prior to closing. The condo certificate contains information about the management and financial position of both the condo being purchased and the condo’s management corporation.

Why will the buyer want the condo certificate? Because of the information it contains. Drilling down, the condo certificate is very valuable for 3 primary reasons.

  1. The condo corporation – The condo certificate will contain information about the condo corporation’s management structure, expenses and budget. It will disclose if the condo corporation has legal issues and much, much more… This information in totality will support whether or not the condo corporation is in good financial shape. This information may impact the buyer’s decision to purchase.
  1. The condo itself – The condo certificate will reveal the financial standing of the unit in question, including the cost of monthly maintenance fees, inclusions and whether or not the owner is up to date on their payments.
  1. Bi-laws – The condo may have restrictions, such as no pets or how common areas can be used, and this will all be outlined in the condo certificate.

The condo certificate, historically, has been obtained through a lengthy process, beginning with a written request to the condo corporation, paying a fee and then waiting up to 10 days for the certificate to be received. Since obtaining a condo certificate is time consuming and costly, some real estate sales professionals leave it to the lawyer, crossing their fingers. However, this is no longer the only way to obtain a condo certificate.

Technology has changed, and condo certificates can now often be obtained online, payment rendered online, and in some cases delivery of the document can be done electronically – taking courier fees, cheques and time out of the equation.

This makes obtaining a condo certificate for your client easier and more efficient. Obtaining a condo certificate makes all parties to the transaction view you as offering top-notch services because you are taking measures to ensure that everything is checked out at the beginning of the transaction and not on the eve of close.

Condos that make it to closing where condo arrears or some issue that could delay or even prevent a closing appear end up costing everyone. Avoid the hassle today and check out the GeoWarehouse Store to learn how you can start ordering online condo certificates today!

Visit https://www.geowarehouse.ca/marketing/features.php#Premium-Services.

 

 

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July 11, 2016

geo2The first quarter of 2016 has closed so we thought, what better time to recap Canadian housing numbers? A good starting point is the Teranet – National Bank House Price Index™ (HPI). The Teranet National Bank House Price Index reports the rate of change of Canadian single-family home prices.

We like to rely on this index for two reasons:

  1. Where the data comes from – data is derived from property records of public land registries – which is the most accurate source for land data.
  2. Coverage – the HPI covers 11 major Canadian Cities – Victoria, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Hamilton, Toronto, Ottawa, Montréal, Québec and Halifax.

Here is how Q1 played out:

  • Jan 2016 – Home prices dropped by 0.1%
  • Feb 2016 – Home prices increased by 0.6%
  • Mar 2016 – Home prices Increased by 0.8%
  • Q2 Teaser: April 2016 – Home prices increased by 1.2%

Good news for real estate sales professionals – 3 out of 4 months saw increases. In fact, the past 3 months consecutively have shown increases.

The Vancouver and Toronto markets continue to fuel the market with red hot increases to property values as evidenced by house price indices across the board. The average price of a single family detached home in Canada was widely reported to have soared over 1 million dollars coming into 2016 with Canada’s average recently reported by CBC to be over $500,000 – you can read more on this here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/crea-house-prices-march-1.3537143.

Many have speculated that foreign investment is, at the least, behind what seems to be a boom in British Columbia, to the point where the government has even expressed concerns over supply vs. demand. Here are some interesting articles on the topic to whet your appetite:

Meanwhile, in Toronto, soaring house prices are pushing buyers to look outside of the city and we don’t just mean in the GTA. Toronto’s market has led to booms in Hamilton, Barrie and other cities that are not considered the GTA.

No doubt that the Bank of Canada maintaining the incredibly low lending rate of 0.5% is helping as well. With a strong first quarter, all indicators seem to point towards a strong spring and summer in this ever exciting Canadian real estate market. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that things continue to grow as they have been over the last few months!

For more on the Teranet – National Bank House Price Index™ please visit: http://www.housepriceindex.ca/.

Want to take advantage of the tools that give you a bigger piece of the action? Visit www.geowarehouse.ca today.

 

 

 

 

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NEW Reporting

Author: GeoWarehouse
July 4, 2016

Rich reporting capabilities will help you find the information that you need, in an easy to read manner and with deep analytics that you can use.

 

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No Property Survey? No Problem

Author: GeoWarehouse
July 4, 2016

geo1Surveys are a critical part of the property purchasing process. While the immergence of title insurance has left some relying less on surveys – any person who buys a home really should get a copy of the survey.

Why? Surveys reveal a lot. Surveys are similar to a map that outlines a property’s boundaries and structures. A property survey will reveal improvements to the land where new structures have been added or where the size of the property itself has been increased.

Surveys are also important because they mitigate the likelihood of future disputes over land and boundary lines – this commonly occurs when the time comes to put a fence in or construct a garage. This is not to mention that a survey may reveal that a neighbour has a fence or building constructed on the property that is being sold or vice versa. This can become a costly exercise should it come up after the new owner has taken possession of the property. Your client also may benefit from a survey if they plan to construct new structures or build on the property because the survey will help them determine where they can and cannot legally build.

This brings us to our next point – zoning. Depending on how your client plans to use a property, the survey will reveal restrictions with regard to zoning. For example, what if your client has plans to put in a double garage but the property is not zoned for one, or perhaps your client plans to use part of their property for a business? A survey can reveal these restrictions which may pose problems later.

Finally, a property survey is one document that says what is what. In cases where two properties are sharing something like a driveway, for example, the survey will outline exactly how much of the shared element is located on the property being sold.

The challenge here is that, especially in cases of older properties, surveys can easily be misplaced or lost. Historically, when this occurs the next step is to have a new survey performed which is very costly and takes some time. No property survey? No problem. Well, not having a property survey is a problem, but a lost or stolen one no longer is.

Property surveys are available to you online. Can you imagine the value you can provide to your client when they cringe telling you they can’t find their survey – and your response is ‘not a problem!’ If a survey is available online for your property, the time to get it is greatly reduced because it is expedited electronically and the cost is also far less than requesting a whole new survey.

Don’t have a survey on hand? No problem. Grab one today from the GeoWarehouse Store: https://www.geowarehouse.ca/marketing/features.php#Premium-Services.

 

 

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