Cooling house market could undercut retirement plans


imagesOriginal Article from CBC Business News

Sean Davidson Posted: Jan 04, 2013 5:52 PM ET

Investors hear it all the time: real estate is a sure thing. Or, at least, it’s as close to a sure thing as can be expected; safer than going for a white-knuckle ride on the stock market and seemingly simpler than muddling around with bonds and RRSPs.

Property values, proponents of this mantra like to say, only partly in jest, will keep going up so long as we’re making new people faster than we’re making new land.

This is, experts warn, an over-simplification, and one which creates risk for those who plan to use real estate to bankroll their retirement.

Inheritance “Tension”: Why More Families May Be Headed For Court


Original article from CBC News Canada

By Talin Vartanian Posted: Nov 23, 2014 5:00 AM ET


It’s no secret that family fights over wills can be vicious.

Someone dies and an unholy war erupts over who gets how much of the estate. It might be adult children contesting their late parent’s wishes, doing battle with a step-parent or challenging each other to claim a bigger piece of the financial pie.

There’s more at stake now than ever before. According to a study by BMO Investorline published this year, we are about to witness the biggest inter-generational transfer of wealth in Canadian history, from those born in the 1930s and ’40s to the baby boomers.

When it Makes Sense to Consider a 35-Year Mortgage


Original Article By: 

Huffington Post, June 9th, 2015

imageBritish Columbia and Vancouver in particular is a hot real estate market at the moment. In fact, the Vancouver Sun reports that April was B.C.’s strongest level of sales for that month in a decade and a 29 per cent increase over April of 2014. The province’s growth in employment is not as high as we’d hope but people seem confident in the rise of property prices.

With high prices and many potential buyers struggling to enter the market, some buyers are considering stretching out their payments with a 35-year amortization rather than the typical 25-year amortization that most Canadian home buyers use.

As Our Parents Age, Stay Put or Sell?


One of the more difficult decisions for many people is what to do with the family home when elderly parents are unable to maintain it. The alternatives include selling the house so the parents can move to a condominium or retirement community or upgrading it to allow live-in care.

These decisions should not be rushed. For many, the family home remains their major asset and as a result of the principal residence exemption, it can be sold without paying any income taxes. In many cases, however, the money from the sale must generate enough income after investment (when added to all other income from investments or pension) to look after their needs during retirement.

Tips for Preparing Your House for Sale

Manson Slik,

Often, the hardest part of selling your home is getting the house into “sell ready” condition. This can be a stressful, time consuming and, frankly, an overwhelming experience for both you and your family. Many people don’t know where to begin, which often leads to homes going on the market in a less-than-perfect state. The truth of the matter is that small changes can make a serious impact on the selling price of your home. If you want to maximize your profit, you must commit to the work and get it done. The good news is that by breaking this job down into individual tasks, preparing your house for sale can be manageable – even enjoyable!

Talk to your Agent

Your real estate agent sees and sells listed properties day after day; he/she knows what works. Ask for their advice. They have the experience needed to help you make a list of priority jobs narrowing down the “must dos” from the “could dos” and make the list manageable.