While many Canadians have a good understanding of financial services terms, a recent Angus Reid survey revealed that only 51 percent of respondents were confident they knew what a mortgage deposit was, with 48 percent admitting they were "not very confident" or "not at all confident" they understood the term.


It's easy to see why there's some confusion over the definition, as homebuyers often use the terms "deposit" and "down payment" interchangeably.  While they both refer to money put forward in the home buying process, here's some clarification of each term:

 

A deposit is comprised of the initial funds the buyer submits during the offer process to secure or commit to a property they wish to purchase, as a gesture of trust and good faith to the seller.  It's typically made at the time the offer is made, or upon acceptance of the offer.  There's no typical amount for the deposit, although 5 percent is the norm and in a hot housing market, an offer with a higher deposit...

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PINEAPPLE DESIGN

  HOME


The benefits of having a room plan


A successful room that you enjoy spending time in can be achieved by creating a room plan.  The room plan lays out how best to use the space as well as sets the design and style to be achieved.  The way you feel in a space is influenced not only by the specific furnishings in the room, but by how they fit together, the existence of focal points, balance, textures and lighting.  This is the easiest time to make changes if desired before anything has been ordered.  A room plan incorporates any existing furniture you may want to keep as well as shows any furniture to be added.  The plan also includes all the colour, fabrics, window coverings, carpet and lighting that are necessary to complete the room.  Once all the selections have been finalized, a budget can be confirmed.  You know that when everything arrives it fits and money is not wasted.  Without a plan, purchases are made without...

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It's time for homebuyers and sellers to take a deep breath...the busy real estate season is ready to take off!  What's the forecast for this year's real estate activity?


Research by the Bank of Canada suggests that tightened mortgage rules will reduce sales activity in housing markets across Canada, particularly in and around Torono and Vancouver.  Meanwhile, potential homebuyers throughout other areas of the country are anticipated to pause on the sidelines, as they save up larger down payment before purchasing and contributing to a modest improvement in sales activity during the second half of 2018.


The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) notes that the anticipated decline in Canadian sales activity in the fist half of 2018 due to an erosion of housing affordability from tighter mortgage regulations may be mitigated by a number of factors.  Some buyers who qualify for a smaller mortgage may purchase a lower-priced home, while others may opt to stretch the amortization...

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Is 2018 the year you or someone you know intends to retire?  If so, a big part of that plan will likely involve some serious decisions about long-term housing.

 

Retiring from a paying job typically means an adjustment in your income, so here are some important points to think through before you take that important step:

 

Are you anticipating that you'll be included in the 15 percent of Canadian seniors who still have an outstanding mortgage on their homes?  If so, you need to recognized exactly how much extra money you'll need in retirement in order to cover your housing costs.

 

If retirement is on the horizon but not yet imminent, you'll want to work with a financial planner and mortgage professional to see what you can do to reduce or eliminate your mortgage debt before you retire.  Bumping up your monthly payments now, while you're still working, will help the debt disappear quicker.  If you can refinance to a lower interest rate but keep your monthly...

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The weather outside is frighening... so why is your car suffering the elements on the driveway, while your junk sits protected and cozy inside your garage?  don't wait for spring cleaning-pull on some gloves, crank up your playlist and head into the garage to toss what you don't need, organize what you do need, and clear the way for a protected envioronment for your vehicle.


Garages tend to be a catch-all of all the clutter that nobody wants to trip over inside the house.  So step one is to sort all like-items together to get a handle on what the heck you have in that garage, anyway.  Chances are you have lots of duplicates of things you don't even need one of, things that you might be able to donate or even sell online to someone who actualy does need it.

 

Once you purge and can see the light (and the floor), then it's time to organize the remaining items.

 

Install shelving as needed, and take advantage of all vertical space to store frequently used items; if...

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Strategy for Saving


Ensuring your home is prepped properly can save you a nice chunk of change while protecting your property for years to come. 

Break It Down

Looking at a giant to-do list is overwhelming. To save frustration, break it down into two or three jobs you can tackle over the next three to four weekends. First up, windows. Check each one in the house for drafts and insulation needs. The following week, inspect pipes to avoid an unfortunate burst in January. You can make things even easier by dividing the job among the family. Assign each person a room to inspect and report back on whether it's ready for winter.

Three Steps to a Safe Season

#1: Prep the Plumbing

Drain the water from your outdoor faucets and garden hoses and arrange to have any in-ground sprinkler pipes blown out. Roll up the garden hoses and store them inside. Identify any "problem" pipes that are prone to freezing in the house and consider using heat tape to keep them warm during extremely cold weather....

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IS THIS "THE ONE"

 

Whether you're ready to commit to a place because it actually has most of the "must haves" on your list, or whether it's the realization that there's not a lot of suitable inventory on the market that has made you a little impulsive, before you sign the purchase agreement, take a moment-and a deep breath-to remind yourself of the following buying parameters:

 

1)  DON'T BITE OFF MORE THAN YOU CAN CHEW.  Your monthly housing costs-including mortgage payments, property taxes, homeowner's insurance, heating costs etc.-shouldn't take up more than a third of your gross monthly income.  Work with your mortgage representative to figure out what you can afford, and stick to that budget.

 

2) LOOK BEYONE THE FOUR WALLS.  In addition to the home itself, make sure the area will work for you and your family.  Check out transportation, amenities, schools, shopping, safety issues, distance from work and family, and if the style of the neighbourhood...

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Services & Benefits

Our staging and design team are on hand to facilitate your needs when it comes to preparing your home for sale.

Staged homes sell faster and for more money when compared with homes that have not been staged.

 

We offer FREE staging consultation, this includes advice on updating your home for the best return. Providing you with a detailed list of recommendations.

 

Staged homes sell on average 15 to 18 percent higher than a home that is not staged.

 

Our Team can coordinate any necessary repairs, and assist you with any de-cluttering, updating, painting and storage needs.

 

Staged homes spend less time on the market than non-staged homes.

 

Professionally staged homes stand out in the prospective buyers' minds.

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