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

Lowest July Sales Since 2002

Lowest July Sales Since 2002

  Sales were down 40% for July compared to last year with 5,921 houses and condominiums changing hands in all the districts.  Although it’s common for the market to dip lower in the summer months, this was extreme… the lowest sales for a July since 2002. Condo townhouse and high-rise suites took a bigger 38.6% share of the market with 2,283 units being sold. The July average sale price for all GTA homes came in at $746,218 – a still significant but much more moderate 5% higher than last year. If you consider the year-to-date average compared to last year however, the market is still up 18.8% which shows that not all those gains in price during the insane spri...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Home Buying Process Timeline - What Should You Do First?

Home Buying Process Timeline - What Should You Do First?

After many years of helping Toronto house and condo buyers, we’ve found that, with the exception of occasional sudden events, most house and condo buyers begin their home buying search about six to twelve months from the date they ultimately pick up their keys from their lawyer and move in to their new home.   Those sudden events might include a job change, a marriage, a new addition to the family, a divorce or receiving an inheritance.   It usually all starts with you having some casual thoughts or conversations about buying and then, over time, as market information is received and knowledge about the home buying process is gathered, it progresses to actually going out to l...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Beware Of Awkward Sensory Experiences Destroying Your Sale

Beware Of Awkward Sensory Experiences Destroying Your Sale

How do you think your condominium suite, or building for that matter, will stand up to an examination by every buyer’s senses… sight, smell, hearing, feel and taste?  Well, maybe not taste so much but certainly by the other four. Prospective purchasers will have all four of those senses turned on high when they enter your building, take the elevator to your floor and then enter into your suite.  Because your home is new to them, they’re excited to experience what it would be like to live there full time. When you are finalizing your preparations to put your home on the market, take two tours of your residence… one in the daytime and the other at night&he...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

3 Things You Absolutely Need To Be A Successful Buyer

3 Things You Absolutely Need To Be A Successful Buyer

Cash, Cash, Cash…   You’ll definitely need the big bucks to buy a house or condo in Toronto.  For purchases up to $500,000, you’ll need a minimum of 5% down payment and for purchases between $500K and $1,000,000 you’ll need a minimum of 7% down.  Closing costs are over and above that.   When asked by a bank lender or mortgage broker how much cash you have, give them an exact figure for your total and tell them that includes money you’ll need for closing costs so there’s no confusion.   Your cash can come from your bank account, your RRSP, any GICs or Term Deposits or from the bank of Mom and Dad or any combination thereof.   ...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

BIG Drop In The June Market Stats

BIG Drop In The June Market Stats

Sales were down 37.4% for June compared to last year with 7,974 houses and condominiums changing hands in all the districts.   Condo townhouse and high-rise suites took a bigger 37.6% share of the market with 3,000 units being sold.   The June average sale price for all GTA homes came in at $793,915 – a still significant but much more moderate 6.3% higher than last year.   Because of higher prices for semi and detached houses, sales and competition for condo suites has now brought the high-rise market into extremely high demand.   The active listing inventory is one of the strongest indicators of how smooth or outrageous the market has been.  The inventory aver...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Why Meet With An Agent Before Starting Your Home Search?

Why Meet With An Agent Before Starting Your Home Search?

One of the things that most agents do when you first contact them is to ask you a few questions over the telephone such as what are you looking for, how many bedrooms and bathrooms and what neighbourhoods were you thinking of?   Then they will just throw you in their car, take you around and tour you through a bunch of homes.  More often than not many of those homes don’t fit your needs.   The problem with that is it wastes your time.  You spend your weekends or evenings going out and looking at homes that don’t even come close to what you really want to be moving into.   The Buyer Consultation is all about saving you time and getting clarity!   We f...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

3 Improvements NOT To Do Before Selling Your Home

3 Improvements NOT To Do Before Selling Your Home

It’s tempting… install new hardwood floors, add in a new granite countertop, build in new closet organizers, hang new window coverings… all the things you’ve always wanted to do to your suite. A typical buyer often has three problems when it comes to doing renovations, and this especially applies to first-time buyers who have no experience whatsoever.   First, the thought of doing any renos scares them because they have no idea what things cost and they almost always estimate the expense as twice as much as it really is.  Second, they’re often busy, busy people and have no time to do things themselves and third, after paying their down payment and ...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Get Some Timeline Guidance For Your Mortgage

Get Some Timeline Guidance For Your Mortgage

  Actually, it’s never too early to start thinking about how much of a mortgage you might qualify for.  Many people start looking at condos or houses online or at open houses 6-18 months ahead of when they’re thinking they might buy.   Having a realistic figure in mind about how large of a mortgage you could get approved for will save you a lot of time (and dreaming).   Another good reason to get an early pre-approval is that, in all probability, you will find out things about your credit or about what you need income-wise that you didn’t know before.    You can then use your lead time profitably to clear up any issues, solidify jobs or create...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Some Relief From April’s Market Madness

Some Relief From April’s Market Madness

  Sales were down 20% for May compared to last year with 10,196 houses and condominiums changing hands in all the districts.   Condo townhouse and high-rise suites took a bigger 35% share of the market with 3,565 units being sold… just 120 fewer sales than in April.   The May average sale price for all GTA homes came in at $863,910 – a still significant but more moderate 14.8% higher than last year.   Because of higher prices for semi and detached houses, sales and competition for condo suites has now brought the high-rise market into extremely high demand.   The active listing inventory is one of the strongest indicators of how smooth or outrageous the...Read More