Posts Tagged ‘buying a home’

Running from October 5th to the 11th this year’s theme is “”Working Smoke Alarms Save Lives: Test Yours Every Month”.

Home fires account for 30% of all fires and 73% of all fire-related deaths in Canada. While many of these tragedies could have been avoided, communities and fire services across the province, as well as the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management, will be hosting a number of events to help raise awareness and keep people safe. Functioning smoke alarms can increase chances of surviving a fire by up to 50 per cent and Ontario requires a working smoke alarm on every storey and outside all sleeping areas. Over the last five years, in 35 per cent of fatal home fires, there was no smoke alarm warning. In 13 per cent of those, there were no smoke alarms present. Precious seconds are all you have in case of fire and every second counts. Getting advance warning from a smoke alarm could save your life and that of your family. Be prepared.

We would like to share the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) list of the 10 top tips for preventing fires and saving lives.

  1. Install and regularly check smoke detectors
    • Remove dust, check batteries when the clocks change in the spring and fall, test regularly and replace at least every 10 years
  2. Create an emergency preparedness plan for your family
    • Develop a fire evacuation plan, practice executing it and stick to the plan in an emergency
  3. Frequently inspect and clean chimney flues
    • Ensure there is no blockage or buildup that could cause a fire
  4. Install proper light bulbs
    • Never use light bulbs with a higher wattage than the maximum indicated on the fixture
  5. Monitor heated appliances and decor
    • Properly use and watch portable heaters, ensure lint is removed from the dryer, never leave an iron unattended and keep an eye on burning candles
  6. Be careful when cooking
    • Use your kitchen safely, especially when deep-frying or cooking with flammable oils
  7. Properly store flammable materials
    • Keep gasoline, solvents, waste and other materials that could ignite at a distance of at least 10 meters from your home
  8. Remove dry leaves and debris
    • Keep leaves, other dry materials and potentially flammable garbage away from the exterior of your house, especially if you have wood or vinyl siding
  9. Prepare and update a home inventory
    • Make a list of what you own, including the value of each item; take photos or make a video of your belongings; and update the list regularly
  10. Assemble a disaster safety kit
    • Prepare a basic kit of food, water and other necessities that will last at least 72 hours in an emergency




Thinking of Selling or Buying a Home? Click the red links.



BEFORE visiting a model home here are some things you need to know.

Comparing Existing and New Homes

You will find that existing homes on average are less expensive and more likely in an established neighbourhood thatBuild-Buy has been there for a number of years. New homes on the other hand being more expensive have the ability of offering you a chance to get it done to your liking rather than what’s just there. Working with the home builder you might decide on upgraded flooring, light fixtures, energy efficiency, and finishing touches such as crown molding, hard wood flooring or even higher ceilings. All of this will play a part in deciding which way to go. An existing home will have settled and the street leading to it are probably all lit and paved along with the driveways which is not always the case for new homes. You could be sitting next to a mud pile for a while, sometimes even a few years.

First Thing First

You should know that the home builders hire Selling Agents to promote their homes. These agents have the builder’s interest at heart. When you hire a Realtor to represent you as a Buyer’s agent you have the best of both worlds. His fiduciary duties or obligations are to represent you and your interests as he verifies plans, warranties, financing, building material and even lot and services.  So when you are hiring a Realtor find out how much he knows about new homes so that if you decide to go that route you will have the best representation. If you visit the model home first and you sign your name as a visitor most Realtor will not represent you as the Builder will then consider you their client and will not negotiate with them.


Buy-BuildThe price range that you want to pay for a home and what you can afford will always be your primary concern. Knowing the bottom line and what kind of mortgage you will be carrying will be a big help in the decision making. If you have to sell a home first will also play part in the whole calculation. You may also want to move into a new home before you sell your home so that any extra work could be done before the big move. It’s much easier to paint a home or add finishing touches before the furniture gets all moved in. You might opt for a bare bone home and do the finishing yourself or pay the builder to upgrade some of the basics such as hardwood flooring, ceramic tiles, and stainless steel appliances. In a new home having a finished basement or a deck might not be a priority and could be done later. On the other hand adding a master ensuite or an extra room could prove to be beneficial when comes time to resell. These are some of the options to consider but there are many more.

Choosing a Builder

Your Realtor can help you with this as they know who they are and what they produce. Depending on the type of home that you are looking for they will be better equipped to inform you of all the variance. Like doctors or lawyers not all home builders are the same. From a master builder to space innovator to technology and energy expert, there are many different kinds of builder. Your needs, financial situation and what is available will all play a part.

Neighbouring Facts

Whether you are buying existing or new home you will want to know the neighbourhood. In an existing home-buyingneighbourhood you might want to drive around and check other homes for cleanliness, yard embellishment, general maintenance and you will want to know who lives next door, across the road and across your back yard too. Is it a quiet street or is it being used as a freeway for the motorcycle club down the road? Is it near schools, shopping, church and work? How about the accessibility to these things? It might take six minutes to drive from work to the entrance of the new subdivision but if it takes you thirty minutes from the entrance to your home you might rethink the idea. If a new neighbourhood you should know what else will be built around there. If there’s a green area will it be removed to make room for more homes? Don’t take anything for granted. Even a lake can be dried up.


A good Realtor will be a master negotiator for you whether in an existing home or a new home. Look for builders packages offered that could save you a lot of money in upgrades or financing. Sometimes a less desired or even a premium lot could be obtained at a lesser cost. The model home or other homes from a series that are finished but still not sold or even another contract that fell through could mean a reduced price. There is always room to negotiate.


New Home ConstructionCertainly when you purchase an existing home you know what you are buying because you can see it all from the neighbourhood, the attic to the basement of the house. Neighbourhoods are established and you can see how easy it is to access. Landscaping and fencing are usually done. You might be lucky to find a home that was upgraded already by a past owner. You don’t have to pay the GST/HST unless the home was substantially renovated and then the taxes are applied as if it were a new home. Some people prefer the challenge and flexibility of building their own home. A new home has up-to-date design, material and features. You may be able to choose certain features such as style of siding, flooring, cabinets, plumbing and electrical fixtures. Other features could be upgraded such as adding a fireplace, trees and sod, or a paved driveway. GST applies to new homes but you could be entitled to a rebate from the New Housing Rebate Program. Check Canada Revenue Agency’s website or check with your Realtor. Other than lower maintenance costs many items in new homes are covered by a warranty.

There is certainly a myriad of choices when it comes to purchasing a home. We’ve looked at existing and new homes here but now the real homework begins as you decide what type of home you would like but we will leave that for another report.

It’s that time of year when many folks decide to sell their homes and having an Open House is most likely part of the agent’s marketing plan to attract buyers and a sale of the home. But not every one attending Open House has the intention of buying a home. Find out how to protect yourself and your belongings during an Open House. This video will show you how.



Looking for a Dream Home? CLICK HERE! to get started!

If you are thinking of Selling your home and are not sure where to start CLICK HERE for the first steps!

Click on photo for  more details

Click on photo for more details

3 Gees Way, Cambridge ON

This lovely 2 storey home is located on a large fenced corner lot with easy access to the 401, schools and amenities. Starting at the very top we have a large loft that is sure to be a busy place for your family. Whether you make it a media room or family room or even an extra bedroom- it will be super spacious. Loft

Down one floor we have a huge master bedroom with awesome windows letting in maximum natural light. You have sufficient room to make a sitting area for reading and relaxing. You also have a walk in closet for all your storage and a very impressive ensuite with a whirlpool tub that has ceramic back splash and skirting. There will be no fighting in the morning with the double sinks and a separate shower.

Mstr Ensuite

Also on this floor we have two other good size bedrooms, a 5-pce family bath and the most women friendly laundry room with a laundry tub. No more ups and downs to do laundry.  Next we go down the main floor.

The main floor is very open as you would have noticed when you came in. The front foyer has ceramic flooring, a large closet for coats, a man door to the garage and a 2-pce powder room.

Down the short hall is the main living space which is open and bright. The chef will love this kitchen with all of the Dinettecupboards, counter top and breakfast bar. Across from the kitchen is a lovely dinette with window to the side yard and access to the rec room.

Next we have the large living room which has patio door access to the large deck and fenced side and back yard. You can easily entertain on this main floor. Living Room

Next we go down to the finished basement for a view of the “L shaped” recreation room.

You have so much options here for the kids or teenagers. Or keep it for hubby for a man cave or fitness room. The choice is there.

Exterior Back Last but not least is the back and side yards. It’s unusual to have a fenced side yard so this lot gives you the most yard. You have a lovely patio for BBQ and entertaining and a shed for all your summer time storage.

You won’t want to miss the Open House on Sunday for a chance to see it all in person. It will be worth the trip.

For more information or to view the Visual Tour go to

Thinking of selling your Home? Start Here!

Thinking of buying a Home? Start Here!

Here we are June already. Market is heating up along with the weather. If you are thinking of selling or buying a home don’t forget that we have the tools in place to get the job done. For Sellers, get a quick Free Home Evaluation to find out what your home is worth. For Buyers, let us help you Find your Dream Home quickly from the comfort of your home. Give us a call or follow the red links.

May Cambridge Market Baromerter




Buying a home requires knowledge and we are here to help you in the process. When you hire a Realtor you have the best representation to help you find your dream home and to help you negotiate the best deal for your wallet. Your interests are the Realtor’s prime concerns. How will he stay in business or get new clients if he does not give you top service? What will he do to get you the best deal and how can you prepare to avoid any mistakes that buyers often overlook but alas too late? Here are some of the major steps to home buying:

Get Mortgage Pre-Approved

One of the most important steps into home buying is finding what you can afford to buy. When you get Mortgage pre-approved you will also know how much you can afford to pay for a home and it will help greatly in choosing the right home. Most Mortgage lender will guarantee you a rate for a particular length of time making it easier to search for your home without the stress of having to make a rush decision. It will also give you dealing power because the sellers will take your offer more seriously knowing that you are pre-approved.

Get the Right House

We put every home buyer under the magnifying glass sort of speak to find out what client’s needs are. We have developed a “Buyer’s Wish List” to help buyers sort out the needs versus the wants. Once you are equipped with the List you are better able to focus on finding the home that meets your criteria and you are less susceptible to play the emotional roulette.

Placing an Offer

Deciding to place an offer requires some homework that your Realtor will be more than happy to do. He will find out what other comparable homes in the area sold for and whether this home is overpriced for the market. This will give you negotiating power if you want to pursue the offer. You don’t want to pay too much for a home and by the same token if you have found the right house you want to be able to beat out the competition by knowing how far you should go in a multiple offer. You want to make the best business decision for you and keeping the emotional entanglements away will save you money and heart aches.

Documents Accuracy

Part of the offer should include title search and survey of the property to make sure that you are getting everything that is listed without any infringements. The title search will advise whether the seller has the right to sell that property and whether there are any encumbrances such as liens, easement, mortgages or property line issues that would prevent the buyer from taking full possession.

Helping Buyers find not just a house but the right house is what we do. Once our buyers are equipped with the knowledge to make the right choice they are on their way to purchasing their dream home.

As the temperature so slowly inches up activity for Sellers and Buyers has come into full swing. Buyers are plentiful and are looking for value with homes ready to move in. Sellers have a great opportunity to sell for the right price in the least amount of time.

April Market Barometer Cambridge


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