Housing affordability across the country

Housing affordability has been the talk of the nation in recent years, especially as tighter mortgage regulations and higher borrowing costs have started to impact housing markets across the country.
A recent report by RBC Economic Research indicates that Calgary’s housing market isn’t out of reach for many potential homebuyers, especially when compared to the Vancouver and Toronto markets, as well as the Canadian average.

(more…)

Read More

Fun in the sun

How to buy a vacation home without getting burned

While sunburn can ruin a holiday, getting burned on a vacation home purchase can sting for much longer. Fortunately, doing your homework will help you find your place in the sun without feeling the heat.

“The market has seen price drops lately, so a lot of people are finding vacation properties at $300,000 or below,” said Bill MacDougall, a real estate professional with Optimum Realty Group in Calgary.

(more…)

Read More

Crunching the numbers

How much home can you afford?

Shopping for the home of your dreams requires knowing how much you can afford to spend, which for most buyers ties directly into a mortgage.

Financial institutions in Canada look at a buyer’s Gross Debt Service (GDS) and Total Debt Service (TDS) ratios to help determine how much mortgage to approve, and therefore, how much home a person can afford.

(more…)

Read More

Dollars and cents

The costs associated with selling a home

Deciding to sell your home is a big decision, so it’s always good to remind yourself of what that decision entails, including the associated costs you might incur. Many real estate industry groups have resources available to the public on the home-selling process, such as the Real Estate Council of Alberta’s Home Seller’s Guide. However, most resources don’t specify selling costs, in part because they can vary greatly depending on the individual property and circumstances of the sale. To provide a frame of reference, here is a summary of costs associated with selling a typical $500,000 home in Calgary: (more…)

Read More

Five tips for first-time buyers

Advice from the experts

Buying a home will be the biggest purchasing decision most of us will face in our lifetimes. Adding to the weight of that decision is going through it the first time.

“Buying a home can bring together both excitement and stress, especially for a first-time homebuyer,” said RBC Financial regional vice-president Joshua Johner.

“First-time homebuyers often need extra advice throughout the process. It’s difficult to know exactly what to expect, but most issues can be resolved by doing a little homework at the outset.”

(more…)

Read More