Archives for September 2013

What about homes that are For Sale By Owner?

I sometimes have Buyer clients looking at Edmonton real estate listings and St Albert real estate listings, ask “what about private sales?”

I say, “good question.”  Let’s talk about them for a second.

I believe that anyone is free to sell their car, bicycle, boat, and yes even their home on their own. We live in a free country.

Now, do I think it’s the best way to sell your home? No. And for a few reasons. I won’t go into great depth here because I already have a page on this website about For Sale by Owners and why they should use a REALTOR® such as us to sell their home.

In regards to buyers, For Sale by Owners are more difficult for me to show.

I try to show each pre-approved buyer a selection of homes, so they can choose the home that they want. With homes on the MLS® this is quite easy.

I contact the listing REALTOR® to set-up an appointment but the seller will not have to be home when we go through. This is because we have an electronic key container system to hold the keys and get access to the home. I can show a series of homes to a buyer with ease.

Now, I will show the buyer a For Sale by Owner but I have to make an appointment that is convenient to the seller because they have to be home to let us in. Plus, Buyers might be nervous when a home-owner is there because they are looking in the closets with the owner there.

Either way a seller decides, it’s their home to sell. It’s just that I believe there are many pluses to having a hard-working, caring REALTOR® like us work with you to get your home  SOLD.

Organized real estate has been around for 150+ years, so it must be doing something right.

Call us to get us working for you!

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Ben’s Foreclosure Friday Listings – Sept 27th – 2013

Fall is here and interest rates have been slowly creeping up.  The Edmonton and area real estate market continues to be very active. Alberta has a robust economy and the Edmonton area reflects that.

If your thinking of selling, now would be a good time to list your house with us. Call or email us for all your real estate wants and needs.

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There are some pretty good deals here for the owner or investor that wants to buy a property to hold and rent for the future, to live-in, or to reno and flip. I will be happy to assist you but please make sure you are comfortable with what you are doing and that you have your finances sorted. If you need a mortgage broker or bank mortgage specialist, we can suggest several. Just ask.

If you would like to have foreclosures emailed directly to you, just  fill out the form at the bottom.

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One file below is Edmonton condo and single family foreclosure listings, and one file will be condo/single family foreclosures surrounding Edmonton. Asking price is $200,000 to $500,000.

If you are looking for the opportunity to find a good deal on a house or condo, have a look at these listings.

1. Just click on this link to access the Edmonton listings.    Edmonton Foreclosures Sept 27 – 2013

2. Just click on this link to access the surrounding area listings.   Around Edmonton Foreclosures Sept 27 – 2013

If you have any questions or would like to see one or some of these homes, just call Ben at 780-266-4418.

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Ben’s Foreclosure Friday Listings – Sept 20th – 2013

Summer is officially coming to an end but the weather is staying nice.  The Edmonton and area real estate market continues to be very active. Alberta has a robust economy and the Edmonton area reflects that.

If your thinking of selling, now would be a good time to list your house with us. Call or email us for all your real estate wants and needs.

– – – – –

There are some pretty good deals here for the owner or investor that wants to buy a property to hold and rent for the future, to live-in, or to reno and flip. I will be happy to assist you but please make sure you are comfortable with what you are doing and that you have your finances sorted. If you need a mortgage broker or bank mortgage specialist, we can suggest several. Just ask.

If you would like to have foreclosures emailed directly to you, just  fill out the form at the bottom.

– – – – – –

One file below is Edmonton condo and single family foreclosure listings, and one file will be condo/single family foreclosures surrounding Edmonton. Asking price is $200,000 to $500,000.

If you are looking for the opportunity to find a good deal on a house or condo, have a look at these listings.

1. Just click on this link to access the Edmonton listings.   Edmonton Foreclosures Sept 20 – 2013

2. Just click on this link to access the surrounding area listings.  Around Edmonton Foreclosures Sept 20 – 2013

If you have any questions or would like to see one or some of these homes, just call Ben at 780-266-4418.

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Edmonton dominates housing awards

CHBA honours province’s top builders, renovators, developers.

Edmonton builders took home the lion’s share of trophies at the 2013 Awards of Excellence in Housing on Friday, winning 14 of the 22 prizes.

The awards were handed out during the BUILD 2013 Conference in Jasper, held by the Canadian Home Builders’ Association — Alberta. The annual event brings together builders, renovators and developers from across the province.

This year, for the first time, the association awarded Builder of the Year accolades in three categories: large volume, small volume and multi-family. Homes by Avi took the Ralph Scurfield Builder of the Year Award in the large-volume category; White Eagle Homes of Edmonton received the nod for small volume; and Builder of the Year in the multi-family category was Qualico Group of Companies.

Calgary’s builders won six awards, and one builder in each of Red Deer and Lethbridge was also honoured. Companies that won multiple awards include Homes by Avi (four), White Eagle Homes (three) and Landmark and Qualico (two each).

The CHBA received a record 412 entries this year from across Alberta, underscoring the strength and competitiveness of the industry. According to the association, housing starts in the province were up 10 per cent in the first half of 2013, and new housing activity is expected to remain relatively high throughout 2014.

The complete list of winners is as follows:

SINGLE FAMILY HOMES

Single family under $250,000: Sterling Homes — Trista, Edmonton

Single family $250,000 — $280,000: Homes by Avi — Yorkdale, Edmonton

Single family $280,000 — $310,000: Homes by Avi — Donovan, Edmonton

Single family $310,000 — $350,000: Homes by Avi — Rosedale, Edmonton

Single family $350,000 — $400,000: Rococo Homes — Cameron, Edmonton

Single family $400,000 — $450,000: White Eagle Homes — Sandstone, Edmonton

Single family $450,000 — $525,000: White Eagle Homes — Emilia, Edmonton

Single family $525,000 — $625,000: Homes by Avi — Dream Home, Calgary

Single family $625,000 — $750,000: White Eagle Homes — Blue Diamond, Edmonton

ESTATE HOMES

Estate home $750,000 — $1,000,000: Galko Homes Master Builder — custom home, Lethbridge

Estate home $1,000,000 — $1,500,000: Marcson Homes — Victoria, Edmonton

Estate home over $1,500,000: Crystal Creek Homes — Bobier residence, Calgary

MULTI-FAMILY

Multi-family apartment under $325,000: Jayman MasterBUILT — Midori, Edmonton

Multi-family apartment over $325,000: Rohit Communities — Duke, Edmonton

Multi-family townhouse or duplex under $300,000: Pacesetter Homes — Affirmed, Edmonton

Multi-family townhouse or duplex $300,000 — $400,000: Landmark Homes — Unit 3109, Calgary

Multi-family townhouse or duplex over $400,000: Prominent Homes — Altadore, Calgary

RENOVATIONS

Renovation under $200,000: Ackard Contractors — Parkview west residence, Edmonton

Renovation $200,000 — $500,000: Platinum Homes & Developments — Goranson residence, Red Deer

Renovation over $500,000: Malbec Homes — Barn House, Calgary

GREEN HOME

Landmark Group of Builders: Chopin, Edmonton

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

Brookfield Residential: Auburn Bay, Calgary

MERIT AWARDS

Broadview Homes: Cascade, Calgary

Sorento Custom Homes: Marcelo, Red Deer

Daytona Homes Master Builder: Austyn II, Edmonton

Daytona Homes Master Builder: Marquis, Lethbridge

Brost Developments: Sovdi residence, Medicine Hat

http://www.edmontonjournal.com/homes/Edmonton+dominates+housing+awards/8913189/story.html

Okay, it’s time to send in the Negotiator…

Some of the aspects of my profession as a real estate agent, are to represent my clients best interests, to carry out their lawful instructions, and to work to get them the best price.

The art of negotiation is very often required to successfully bring two parties to an agreement.

Now, during the negotiation process its not necessarily just the price that’s negotiated. It can be the possession date, the deposit, the terms, or the conditions. All aspects of the transaction could be subject to negotiation.

As a real estate agent, I believe our clients benefit from our experience while we take a lot of the emotion out of the negotiation, and that is a good thing. If we help the buyers and sellers to reach a mutually acceptable agreement then both sides can feel well served.

It is often said that “3rd party negotiation saves money”. This means that having a professional REALTOR®, like us, negotiating for you, can save you money as opposed to you negotiating with the other person yourself.

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If you are thinking of selling your home yourself, please have a look at the information on this website.  It will help you to get a feel for just how much service we put into listing and selling your home or condo.

Ben

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Edmonton-area housing market still strong

EDMONTONEdmonton-region home prices showed a moderate upswing in August compared to a year ago, according to statistics released Wednesday by the Realtors Association of Edmonton.

“Our market continues to exhibit strong fundamentals,” said association president Darrell Cook. “Rental vacancy rates are low at about 1.2 per cent, new home starts are up and weekly take-home pay rates are the highest in Canada.”

The average single-family dwelling sold for $416,494 in August, up 1.5 per cent from July and up 5.4 per cent from August 2012. The median selling price for a single-family dwelling was $380,100, down 1.3 per cent from July but up 2.7 per cent year-over-year.

The condominium average selling price was $244,675, down 0.9 per cent from July and up 3.8 per cent from August 2012. The August median condo selling price was $230,000, up 2.2 per cent from July and up 3.8 per cent from a year earlier.

Residential sales dropped 14.2 per cent from July to 1,490, but compared to August 2012, sales were up 9.9 per cent.

Recent mortgage rate increases would not have a major impact on the market, Cook said.

“Buyers applying for a mortgage now may have to buy a slightly less expensive property than before because their qualification amount may be lower. In the short term, any reduction in the number of buyers will be made up by the potential buyers becoming more motivated to buy before their pre-approval period ends.”

Cook said price escalation also wasn’t a concern for him.

“The upward pressure on housing prices will be moderated by the seasonal decreases as we approach winter,” he said.

The inventory of homes fell to 5,557 in August from 5,834 in July. It took an average of 53 days to sell a home.

http://www.edmontonjournal.com/business/Edmonton+area+housing+market+still+strong/8869442/story.html

Edmonton leading province’s new home construction

EDMONTON – The latest economic outlook from the province shows Edmonton has surpassed Calgary in housing starts this year, becoming the leader in new home construction in Alberta.

At the current pace, Alberta will see 36,500 new homes built by the end of this year – that’s about 4,000 more than had previously been estimated by the province. Edmonton has been the major driver of that growth, with housing starts up 31 per cent. Experts say the hot market is being driven by high population growth and low unemployment.

“People are being drawn to this city because of our relatively low unemployment rate. We’re at 4.5 per cent. We also have relatively high wages,” says Edmonton chief economist, John Rose. “So we’ve seen population growth pick up very, very sharply in the Edmonton area.”

“Our working age population, that is the population 16 years and over according to the labour force survey, has grown by 4 per cent in the last year, and that’s really remarkable,” he adds.

Rose explains that it’s not just Edmonton experiencing strong housing growth, but the whole region. However, he says that, for the year as a whole, “Edmonton is going to very handily outperform Calgary, both in terms of employment and housing starts.”

“We’ll have probably one of the best years we’ve seen for housing starts both in the city and in the region.”

Dan Hanna, of Parkwood Master Builder, has seen the effects of the hot housing market firsthand.

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Renting vs. buying real estate

“This is a record year in 25 years, so yeah – it’s been a good year.”

He says the company has experienced a growth of about 20 per cent, and based on what he’s heard from other builders, his company isn’t the only one seeing a surge in business.

It’s believed the market will soon begin to cool, though.

“As we get into 2014, we’re going to start to see interest rates moving up, we’ve seen some long-term mortgage rates go up over the past couple months. When we get into 2014, that really is going to begin to bite,” says Rose. “So affordability for housing – because mortgage rates are going to start to move up for 2014 – is going to be an issue. And again, that’s going to take some of the heat out of the Edmonton housing market.”

Rose believes those factors may bring the province’s housing market down 0.5 to 1 per cent, but Alberta will still continue to outperform the rest of Canada.

http://globalnews.ca/news/812468/edmonton-leading-provinces-new-home-construction/ Global News

I’m Buying a Brand-New Home, so “Why do I need a Real Estate Agent?”

I’m Buying a brand-new home, so “Why do you need a Real Estate Agent?”

This seems a logical question for those interested in buying a brand-new home, while wanting to save all they can. After all, you can talk with the home builder or their sales rep and you can quickly be the owner of a brand-new home, plus you can do it all without ever having to sit down with those “gasp” REALTORS®.

But what you may not realize is that the money you are saving by skipping out on the Realtor isn’t really being saved at all. In fact, those who don’t use a Realtor likely are costing themselves more in the long-run. Why, you say?

For starters:

1. Your agent is a licensed professional, meaning he or she has a wealth of knowledge and resources unavailable to the unrepresented home buyer,

2. By hiring a Knock-Knock Team agent, you also save yourself the time and energy of doing quite a bit of legwork. Many buyers justify not using an agent because they figure they can do this work themselves,

3. Real estate agents are also your personal advocates. During the process they represent your interests and want to get you the best deal possible – after all, their jobs and reputation depend on it! In some cases, an experienced agent can even negotiate with the seller’s non-negotiable prices to get you a better deal or possession date,

4. Choices. We can help you compare different builders, and even see if a one or two year old home could be better value. Then you may have a home with the landscaping, fencing, and deck already done for you, and

5. We are usually paid through the seller, so it doesn’t cost you to use our services as a Buyer.

Before you go into that beautiful Show Home, remember that it is meant to be perfectly staged and finished to WOW you. They do look really good, but lots of the finishes are upgrades and cost thousands extra. We will help you compare costs and finishes between different builders and areas.

The builders sales rep might not have any interest in helping you, the buyer, get a better price or extras.  Their job is to get the best possible deal for the builder. The builder probably will not give you a discount because you aren’t represented by an agent. By going into the transaction unrepresented, you are up against a Seller that works the housing sales business everyday, while you do not.

So instead of asking yourself, “Why should I use an agent?” the real question is, “Why wouldn’t you hire an agent?”

Hiring an agent will save you time today and money tomorrow.

Ben

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