Archive | March, 2013

Buying a rental

March 27, 2013

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I have written before about assuming a hot water heater rental contract with your new house. Today’s question: do you want to?

Before you automatically agree to assume the contract, you might want to take a look at the wording of it. Sometimes it makes more sense to enter into a new contract with a new provider, or to buy a hot water heater rather than renting one. Regardless of what you choose to do, it will be a better choice if it is informed.

Cesia

Cesia is a real estate lawyer at Wall-Armstrong and Green, a boutique law firm in Barrie focusing on real estate and estates. When she's not online, she can usually be found in her garden.

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If a tree falls….

March 20, 2013

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Earth Day is coming up next month, so here is a question along environmental lines: If a tree falls in your yard, who has to pay for its removal?

A tree belongs to the property owner whose land the trunk is on. If it straddles two properties, it belongs to both owners. Any owner of the tree can trim branches on their property; this is also true even if the trunk is on your neighbour’s property, but the roots or branches extend onto your side (as long as you don’t harm the tree). Be aware that you have to stay on your own property to do this.

If a tree from your neighbour’s yard falls into your yard, who pays for the damage depends on the situation before the tree fell. If it was a healthy tree, you probably are stuck paying yourself as your neighbour would have had no way of knowing that the tree was at risk of falling. If the tree was dying or damaged, however, and if you had warned your neighbour to take it down, you may be able to recover some of the cost from your neighbour.

Cesia

Cesia is a real estate lawyer at Wall-Armstrong and Green, a boutique law firm in Barrie focusing on real estate and estates. When she's not online, she can usually be found in her garden.

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Low Interest Rates: Here to Stay?

March 18, 2013

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According to a recent survey done by CIBC, almost half of Canadians believe that today’s low rates will remain unchanged over the next year (a notable increase from the same poll two years ago when only 24 per cent of Canadians believed interest rates would remain low).  What do you think – are rates going to stay this low into 2014?

Some other highlights of the poll include:

  • 45 per cent of Canadians said they would choose a fixed rate mortgage if they had to decide today
  • 26 per cent of Canadians said they would choose a variable rate mortgage
  • Another 25 per cent said they were uncertain which mortgage would be right for them, an increase over the 16 per cent who were undecided in 2012

You can read the full report online here.

Tim

Tim is a mortgage agent in Barrie who specializes in helping first-time home buyers. He works with a variety of lenders and can help customize a mortgage with the best rates & options that fit the needs of each customer.

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Toxic walls

March 13, 2013

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In most agreements, you will see a clause called “UFFI”. This stands for urea-formaldehyde foam insulation, and is a material that is carcinogenic and hasn’t been used at least since the 1980s. The clause in the agreement will state that, to the best of the seller’s knowledge and belief, there is no UFFI insulation in the house. The reason for this is that banks do not like to lend money to purchase houses with UFFI inside them. While determining absolutely that there is no UFFI would require tearing down the walls, generally speaking, you would be hard-pressed to find a house with UFFI in it today.

Cesia

Cesia is a real estate lawyer at Wall-Armstrong and Green, a boutique law firm in Barrie focusing on real estate and estates. When she's not online, she can usually be found in her garden.

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Getting Ready for House Shopping

March 11, 2013

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family-houseWith the warm weather over the weekend, many people that are hoping to purchase a home this spring are starting to get “that itch.”  To go look at houses and see what’s already out there on the market.  But do you know how much you can afford?  Have you spoken to a mortgage professional to see how much purchasing power you have?

Don’t go out and find your dream home, only to realize you may not be able to obtain financing.  Talk to a mortgage broker, and in as quickly as 15-30 minutes, we’ll be able to tell you how much house you can afford to look at and purchase. Knowing how much you can purchase up front not only saves the embarrassment of having to retract an offer to purchase due to lack of financing, but also makes the purchasing process a lot less stressful. If you already have a pre-approval (not simply a rate hold, but an actual pre-approval) you’ll be free to focus on finding your dream home!

Tim

Tim is a mortgage agent in Barrie who specializes in helping first-time home buyers. He works with a variety of lenders and can help customize a mortgage with the best rates & options that fit the needs of each customer.

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