July, 2012

RRSP Home Buyers’ Plan

The Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP) is a program under which you can, generally, withdraw up to $25,000 from your registered retirement savings plan (RRSP) to buy or build a qualifying home. Couples, including common-law, will be able to withdraw up to $50,000. However, you must meet the first-time home buyer’s condition.

Home buyers withdrawing funds do not have to pay income tax on the amount withdrawn, providing the funds are repaid into the RRSP within 15 years. NOTE money must be in your RRSP for a minimum of 90 days before a withdrawal can be authorized.

Furthermore, all eligible withdrawals do not have to be included in your income, and your RRSP issuer will not withhold tax on these amounts. However, before you can withdraw the funds, you must have a written agreement of purchase and sale/build for a qualifying home and occupy the home within one year.


Air Conditioner Rebate Program

Consumers that replace an inefficient central air conditioner with a new ENERGYSTAR qualified system are eligible for a $500 rebate!

There is also a $50 rebate for having your central air conditioner tuned up by a registered participating contractor, and a $75 rebate on the supply and installation of a programmable thermostat.

For consumer information call 888-668-4636

Tips on Pricing Your Home in Today’s Real Estate Market

The market ultimately determines the true value of your property. Before you compare your home to similar properties and establish a competitive list price, the following points should be considered:




-Community amenities

-Buyer supply

-Financing Options

A comparative market analysis is an indicator of what today’s buyers are willing to pay for a home. It compares the market activity of homes similar to yours in your neighbourhood. Those that have recently sold represent what buyers are willing to pay. The homes currently listed for sale represent the price sellers hope to obtain. And those listings that have expired were generally overpriced or poorly marketed.

I will prepare a competitive market analysis for your home based on the most current market information. Together, we will establish the proper list price for your home.

Your property is not something you sell every day. In fact, for many people it is their largest asset. A house is very complex to market and the process needs to be well organized. To do the job properly, a plan is needed.

I will prepare a personalized plan for you containing all activities intended to market your property. Your property will be aggressively promoted online, through other Real Estate Professionals, your corresponding real estate board, MLS services (unless it’s an exclusive listing), and mailings to potential buyers in your area.

The single most important decision you will make is determining the right asking price for your property. Once a realistic sales price is achieved, you can count on your property being professionally marketed and promoted to bring more buyers to your door. Pricing your home right means:

-Your property sells faster, because it is exposed to more qualified buyers

-Your home doesn’t lose its ‘marketability’

-The closer to market value, the higher the offers

-A well-priced property can generate competing offers

-Other Real Estate Professionals will be enthusiastic about presenting your property to buyers


This post courtesy of Ali Maldoff and Chestnut Park Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage

Toronto Market Update June 2012

Although the sales results for residential resales reported by the Toronto Real Estate Board were down in June as compared to June of 2011, the month’s performance was still strong. As in the case of the previous few months, the number of new listings coming to market continued to increase, prompting some economists to conclude that the sellers’ market that has been in play in Toronto since the latter part of 2009 may be coming to an end. I believe that this prediction maybe premature. It will take a string of months when sales decline and listings continue to increase before the market will convincingly move from a sellers’ to a balanced market.

In June 9,422 residential properties were reported sold. This request is down by more than 13 percent compared to the 10,850 sales reported in May, the most sales reported in any month in 2011. June’s sales were also off by 5.4 percent compared to the 9,959 sales reported in June 2011. This is one of the few months in which sales in the current month did not exceed sales for the same month in the previous year. On a year-to-date basis, 50,778 sales have been reported. This pace, if it continues, will exceed the record year of 2007 when Toronto area Realtors sold 93,193 residential properties.

A trend reported in the last monthly report continued into June. Sales growth continues in the 905 region, while sales are beginning to decline in the 416 marketplace. In June sales of detached houses were down 9 percent in the 416 area, yet up 2 percent in 905. Similarly semi-detached home sales were down 15 percent in the 416 region, while the corresponding housing type in the 905 region was up 7 percent. It is only in the case of condominium apartment sales that the 905 and 416 markets are in lock step. Condominium apartment sales were down 18 percent in the 416 region and 20 percent in the 905 area, the largest drag on the over market.

New listings continued to increase as compared to June of last year. 16,679 new listings came to market, 13 percent more than the 14,755 that came to market last June, but substantially fewer than the 19,177 that came to market in May. Since April 52,292 new listings have come to market. During this same period 30,400 sales have been reported, resulting in an increasing active listing base. At the beginning of July there were 20,583 active listings, 13.7 percent more than the 18,102 properties available for sale in July of 2011. As I have indicated in previous reports, the increasing inventory, if it continues, will shift the balance in the market, resulting in more buyer choice and ultimately moderating price increases.

Not withstanding the increasing inventory levels of residential properties in the Toronto area properties continue to sell at a very brisk pace. In June it took only 22 days for all properties (on average) coming to market to sell. Last year it took 24 days. Although the pace in June was blistering, it was one day less than the 21 days it took all properties to sell in May. Like the months of inventory, the days on market statistics must be keenly observed to see if any moderating patterns are developing.

June’s average sale price declined as compared to Mays. In May the average sale price was $516,350, slightly less than the all time record average sale price of $516,608 established in April of this year. Junes average sale price came in at $508,622, 7.3 percent higher that the $474,223 achieved in June 2011. Junes decline, as compared to April And May, is consistent with cyclical seasonal declines, and does not, therefore indicate that average sale prices are declining. Historically prices begin to decline in June, and continued to decline in July and August.

Central Toronto remains the most expensive place to purchase detached and semi-detached houses. On average a buyer can expect to pay $1,306,000 for a detached house, and $ 700,000 for a semi-detached house. Properties in these categories sold in 19 and 14 days, respectively, notwithstanding their expensive selling prices. The least expensive detached and semi-detached homes can be found in Toronto’s eastern trading districts. On average homes sold for $ 506,370. Buyer’s had to be ready to act quickly. Properties in these categories were often spending less than 10 days on the market before being reported sold.

July will be an interesting month to monitor. If at the end of the months sales for July of this year are less than sales for July 2011, it will be two consecutive months of negative sales variances. Still too early to pronounce that the market has shifted to a balanced market. But clear signs that change is underway If this does not occur, then one can anticipate a brisk market for the remainder of 2012, though less frothy than the first six months of this year. Early indications are that July 2012 will compare well to the performance achieved in July 2011.

Prepared by: Chris Kapches, Senior Vice-President
Chestnut Park Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage