Once a Year, Consider Your Property’s Potential Assuming that at each renewal, a homeowner’s mortgage would be less than it was in the previous term, homeowners can look forward to eventually improving their monthly cash flow. In addition to a smaller mortgage, some may also enjoy the benefit of additional home equity if the property’s market value has increased since it was first purchased. If these factors are working in your favour, it could be a good time to think about your options.
For example, you could consider increasing your monthly payments and shortening the amortization period for your remaining mortgage. Alternatively, you might consider upsizing to a more accommodating home, or downsizing and benefitting from more affordable monthly costs (e.g. mortgage, condo fees, etc.) and fewer responsibilities. If you’re looking for financial opportunities, another option might be to examine the income-earning potential of a second property that could provide you with a stable monthly return on your investment. If now is the time to consider how you may capitalize on your property’s potential, let’s meet to discuss the best options for you. We can start with a candid evaluation of today’s market and your property, and then consider the factors that might affect values in the short and long term.
Home inspections are commonly used to help buyers assess the condition of a house before purchase. However, they can also be very beneficial for homeowners – even if they are not intending to sell in the short term. Getting an informed professional opinion about the state of a home can be invaluable in determining priorities for future renovations or ongoing maintenance decisions. The report will give you an objective opinion on the status of the critical elements of the construction and operation of the house, such as its foundation, structure, roofing and drainage, as well as its HVAC, plumbing and electrical systems.
This thorough checklist can also be used to request and compare contractor quotations when it’s time to act on the inspector’s recommendations. Furthermore, it can provide a basis for discussing the current and potential market value
Imagine finding a home you love, making an offer, and then finding out there are other competing offers on the table. Ouch.
If you’re looking for a property in a competitive market, it is likely that there will be multiple offers. Even just one can create the risk that you’ll lose the home. So how do you make sure your offer is enticing enough to win over the seller? Here are some ideas:
• Don’t make a low-ball offer. If you do, it might be dismissed and you probably won’t get another chance to bid — especially if the other competing offers are near the listing price.
• Have a pre-arranged mortgage and include that with your offer. This reassures the seller there won’t be any money issues. (Most lenders will provide you with a pre-arranged mortgage certificate for this purpose.)
• Go in with a price high enough that the seller will be interested, but not so high as to be leaving money on the table. This is tricky and requires a savvy knowledge of the current market.
• Have a REALTOR® present the offer on your behalf. A REALTOR® will know how to do so professionally, and in a manner that gives you the best chance of getting the home.
In a competitive situation, working with a REALTOR® who is an expert on the local market — and a skilled negotiator — is crucial.
You’re standing by your window admiring the view. Then you notice it. Moisture has built-up around the edges of the glass. Should you worry? It all depends on the reason for the build up.
Assuming you have traditional double-pane glass in your windows, there are a few things to look for if you notice moisture.
Often, moisture at the bottom of the windows is simply caused by too much
humidity in your indoor air. If that’s the case, simply adjust your humidifier. If the moisture is on the exterior of the window, typically there’s also no problem with the window itself. It may have rained recently or the outside humidity may have spiked causing the accumulation. Generally, there’s no reason for concern.
However, if the moisture is in between the two panes of glass, the seal has broken and surrounding air – along with its water content – has made its way in. This disrupts the thermal barrier of the window, reducing its energy efficiency. In fact, the glass might feel noticeably colder than your other windows on chilly days. In that case, you’ll need to replace the pane.
Similarly, if the moisture is coming in through only one spot — the bottom right corner, for example — then you might have a leak. If you have a wood frame or sill, you may also notice a growing water stain. It’s important to get leaks fixed quickly. There may be water damage occurring within the frame that you cannot see.
When you make an offer on a home, it’s a smart idea to have a professional home inspector check it out from top to bottom. This inspection will ensure that the property doesn’t have any unexpected “issues”. After all, you don’t want to buy a home only to discover that the roof needs to be replaced, immediately, for thousands of dollars.
That being said, you might question whether you really need to invest the few hundred dollars it costs for a professional home inspection. “The home we want to buy looks like it’s in very good shape,” you might be thinking. “I can’t see anything wrong with it.”
However, a professional home inspector can see things you can’t. When you view a property that’s on the market, you might be able to notice obvious issues, like a crack in the foundation or a dripping faucet. If you’re experienced with home maintenance, you might even notice roofing tiles that look like they’re overdue for replacement.
But you won’t pick up all the issues a home inspector can.
A home inspector will, for example, use a special device to check for moisture build-up in the washrooms – which can be an indication of mould. He or she will also inspect wiring to make sure everything is safe and compliant with the building code.
That’s not all.
Like a determined detective, a home inspector will investigate the property’s structure, electrical and plumbing systems, insulation, and other components — and then report the findings to you.
In the end, a professional home inspection gives you peace-of-mind and protects your investment. So getting one is highly recommended — even for recently built homes.
A good REALTOR® can recommend a trusted home inspector for you.
Looking for more ideas on making smart decisions when buying a home? Call today.
Say you’re viewing a home and are impressed with how it looks. The walls are freshly painted. Everything seems bright and new. You’re considering making an offer.
Then, while standing on a mat in the kitchen, you hear a squeak below your feet. You lift the mat and see that some tiles are broken. Obviously the mat was there to, literally, cover up that defect.
A few broken tiles are not a big deal. But now you’re thinking, “What else might be wrong with this house?”
There’s no reason to worry that every home will have maintenance issues hidden from view. However, it’s smart to do your due diligence to ensure the home you’re considering is truly as good as it looks.
One way is to have a professional home inspector check out the property as a condition of your purchase offer. He or she will inspect the home from top to bottom, inside and out, and point out any issues you should address.
It’s also smart to ask questions. Find out the age of certain features, such as the roof, furnace, and appliances. Ask about any recent renovations, and determine whether they were done by a professional or by the homeowner.
Most importantly, work with a good REALTOR® who can provide you with information on the property that you would have difficulty getting on your own. Your REALTOR® has a stake in making sure you buy a home with your eyes wide open — knowing all the potential maintenance issues you’re likely to encounter.
Whether you're considering buying a particular home, selling your current
property – or both – a home inspection can help.
A home inspection is an inspection by a qualified professional who takes a
close look at every aspect of a home – structure, wiring, plumbing, and
more – and identifies issues you may not have noticed yourself.
For example, a home inspection can reveal that a furnace will need to be
replaced soon, or that there is a water leak into the basement that needs to
You'll definitely want to get a professional home inspection before you buy a
particular property. That's why most offers to purchase a home are
conditional upon passing a home inspection. (The last thing you want is to
buy your dream home only to discover that the wiring needs to be updated!)
You may also want to get a home inspection on your own home before you
list it for sale. A certificate from a qualified professional that states that your
home passed inspection will make your property more attractive to buyers.
Many reputable home inspectors are members of a professional industry
• Canada Association of Home & Property Inspectors.
• Professional Home and Property Inspectors of Canada.
• National Home Inspectors Certification Council.
In the U.S.
• American Society of Home Inspectors. (http://www.ashi.org)
• National Association of Home Inspectors. (http://www.nahi.org)
• American Institute of Inspectors. (http://www.inspection.org)
It's important to note that certification or licensing is not a requirement in
many jurisdictions. So select a home inspector carefully.
Need to find a reputable home inspector? Call today.
I may be able to give you few reputable Home inspectors to choose from.
I am just a one phone call away.
Protect your home and the investment in your home.