By: Thomas Cook

Why Checking Your Credit Report Is Important

Why Checking Your Credit Report Is Important

A credit report for each buyer going on title is one of the three most important items a bank or mortgage broker checks to see if you are credit worthy and if they’re willing to give you a mortgage.   If you’ve never had credit, have no debt and have always paid cash for purchases, this is not a good thing in this instance.  Lenders want to look at your credit history to see how you’ve handled credit in the past.    If this is you, then you should immediately go and apply for a credit card and use it monthly.  Pay the balance off to zero if that makes you more comfortable.  Doing this for a minimum of six months will establish a good credit rec...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Market won’t slow down… several records have been smashed

Market won’t slow down… several records have been smashed

Big numbers came in once again for August as the traditionally slower summer month showed record sales of 10,775 sales of houses and condos across the GTA.  Our real estate market is displaying the pent-up demand generated after months of being shut down due to Covid.   Condo townhouse and high-rise suite sales were up by 16.6% with a 28.8% share of the market and 3,104 units being sold.  Although not a record, August 2020 sales were only exceeded by those in 2016 (by just over 400 suites).   The August average sale price for all GTA homes came in at $951,404… a big 20.1% increase compared to one year ago.   The active listing inventory is one of the strongest...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Move-Up vs. Second Home: Which One Is Right For You?

Move-Up vs. Second Home: Which One Is Right For You?

The pandemic has changed the way many of us live, work, and attend school—and those changes have impacted our priorities when it comes to choosing a home.   According to a recent survey by The Harris Poll, 75% of respondents who have begun working remotely would like to continue doing so—and 66% would consider moving if they no longer had to commute as often. Some of the top reasons were to gain a dedicated office space (31%), a larger home (30%), and more rooms overall (29%).   And now that virtual school has become a reality for many families, that need for additional space has only intensified. A growing number of buyers are choosing homes further from town as they s...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

How The Closing Process Works - A Checklist Of The Critical Steps

How The Closing Process Works - A Checklist Of The Critical Steps

Now that you’ve accepted a buyer’s offer, there are still a few offer details that must happen.    First, any conditions that the buyer, or you, have inserted into the offer must be satisfied and either a Waiver or a Notice of Fulfillment must be signed by the relevant party.    Typical buyer conditions could be to arrange financing, have a home inspection, a satisfactory review of the condo Status Certificate or even sometimes conditional on having the offer reviewed by the buyer’s lawyer.   Once those have been signed, your sale is now considered to be ‘firm and binding’.   The buyer’s deposit with their offer - typically ab...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Surprising demand as July sales and average sale price hit record highs

Surprising demand as July sales and average sale price hit record highs

Big numbers came in for July as the traditionally slower summer month showed record sales of 11,081 sales of houses and condos across the GTA.  Our real estate market seems to have thrown off the ‘Covid blues’ and bounced back bigger than ever.   Condo townhouse and high-rise suite sales were up by 8.7% with a 28.8% share of the market and 3,194 units being sold.  Although not a record, July 2020 sales were only exceeded by those in 2016 (by just 250 suites).   The July average sale price for all GTA homes came in at $943,710… a big 16.9% increase compared to one year ago.   The active listing inventory is one of the strongest indicators of how slo...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Lowest Mortgage Rates in History: What It Means for Homeowners and Buyers

Lowest Mortgage Rates in History: What It Means for Homeowners and Buyers

The interest rate on Canada’s most popular mortgage, the five-year fixed rate, has fallen to its lowest level in history. In early June, HSBC made headlines when it began offering Canadians a five-year fixed-rate mortgage below 2%. Multiple brokers followed suit, and some are now advertising even lower rates. And while many Canadians have rushed to take advantage of this unprecedented opportunity, others question the hype. Are today’s mortgage rates really a bargain?   While discounted five-year fixed mortgage rates have hovered between 2% and 4% for the past decade, they haven’t always been so low. For a period of 18 years, from 1973 to 1991, the posted five-year mort...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

How To Avoid A Bad Credit Rating

How To Avoid A Bad Credit Rating

It may not be great now, but with a little effort—and admittedly, a lot of time—you can give your credit score a big boost.   Once a collection item hits your credit score, the damage is done. With your FICO score, the only thing that can heal your score is time.   So how do you improve your credit score? Everybody’s situation is different but here are few guidelines you need to take to heart.   Pay your bills (credit cards, vehicle loans etc.) on time - at least make the minimum payment on time and pay more with your next pay check. We know… that’s obvious but paying late by even 30 days could lower your score by between 20-40 points  &...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Cautionary Tips If You Have A Pet

Cautionary Tips If You Have A Pet

Many Ontario residents know that in a rental building, they can have pets even if their lease has a no pets clause. Provided their pet is not a nuisance and doesn’t cause other tenants’ harm, human rights laws in Ontario override these “no pets” clauses.   However, a common misconception is that this is the case in any situation, such as in a condo. Unfortunately, if you are renting or own a suite in a condo, “no pets” rules can be enforced. But as is the case with many Toronto condos, some buildings have restrictions around pets.   While certain pets may allowed, there could be limits on the number of pets or their size or the type of pet permit...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Toronto Average Home Prices Hit Record High In June

Toronto Average Home Prices Hit Record High In June

What a recovery!! In June, at the end of the traditionally busy spring market, sales were almost back to the busy levels from 2019 with 8,701 houses and condominiums changing hands in all the districts.   Condo townhouse and high-rise suite sales were down by 12.5% with a 28.5% share of the market and 2,479 units being sold.  This however is almost a 90% jump over May 2020 condo sales!   The June average sale price for all GTA homes came in at $930,869, up about $65,000 from the month before and a big 11.9% increase compared to one year ago.   The active listing inventory is one of the strongest indicators of how slow or fast the market has been moving.  The inventor...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Add Value To Your Home With These 9 DIY Improvements

Add Value To Your Home With These 9 DIY Improvements

Whether you’re prepping your house to go on the market or looking for ways to maximize its long-term appreciation, these nine home improvement projects are great ways to add function, beauty, and real value to your home.   The best part is, once you’ve secured the materials, most of these renovations can be completed over the course of a weekend. And they don’t require a lot of specialized skills or experience. So grab your toolbox, then get ready to boost your home’s appeal AND investment potential!   1. Spruce Up Your Landscaping   Landscaping improvements can increase a home’s value by 10-12%. But which outdoor features do buyers care abou...Read More