Watch for our advertisement in tomorrow's Calgary Herald celebrating CIR's Five Top Producers from each office out of 700+ Realtors! Thank you to all my Clients for your continued support!
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Watch for our advertisement in tomorrow's Calgary Herald celebrating CIR's Five Top Producers from each office out of 700+ Realtors! Thank you to all my Clients for your continued support!
Posted in: alberta , barry klatt , calgary real estate , canadian spending , finance , financial times , home renovations , Home tips , how to save , properties , real estate , real estate invest , your finance
Over the years, we’ve developed a good understanding of how buildings perform. Construction techniques for new homes have changed rapidly. Most of these improved techniques also apply to renovations.
If you plan carefully, you can renovate your home to make it look better, work better, last longer and be more comfortable. Before renovating, it’s important to assess the condition of your home to determine if there are any significant underlying problems that must be addressed before or during your planned renovation project.
In Canada, we need affordable houses to provide shelter from the elements. We also want our homes to be pleasant, comfortable and attractive.
Homeowners have higher expectations than in the past, particularly about comfort and interior design. Renovations are an opportunity to address some of these expectations.
Some of the reasons people decide to renovate are to:
Renovating is an ideal time to make your house healthier for you, the community and the environment. When assessing your renovation project, be sure to consider the five essentials of Healthy Housing™.
House as a System
A house is much more than just four walls and a roof — it’s an interactive system made up of many components including the basic structure, heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment, the external environment and the occupants. Each component influences the performance of the entire system. A renovation provides an opportunity to improve how your house performs.
As you assess your renovation project, ask yourself how changing particular components will affect the performance of the whole house. For example, as part of a bathroom renovation you may want to add a hot tub that will generate large amounts of humidity during operation.Your existing ventilation may be inadequate to handle the increased moisture levels. It will be important to provide proper ventilation to avoid mold growth, indoor air quality (IAQ) problems and damage to the structure or finishes. You may need to consult with a qualified home inspector or a professional renovator.
A systematic and thorough inspection will help you to assess the condition of your home. Look for any signs of deterioration and the possible causes. Start your inspection in the basement. Many problems in other parts of the house originate there. Depending upon the size of your project, you may want to ask a qualified home inspector or a professional renovator to help you assess your building and develop a plan. Here are some of the likely questions that you’ll want to think about.
Use the House Assessment Worksheet to record the present condition, any problems in your home and to help set priorities for your renovation.
Costing Your Project
The cost of your assessment will depend almost entirely on how many professionals you need. They might include an engineer, architect, electrician, plumber, carpenter or professional home inspector.
Developed by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), the ecoENERGY initiative provides a residential energy assessment service delivered by local organizations across Canada for a fee. Retrofits may be eligible for grants. To find a local service organization or grant information, visit www.ecoaction.gc.ca or call 1-800-387-2000.
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A little more than $40,000 could be up for grabs when you purchase your recreational home in BC!
Good news for sure for real estate investors in the recreational market. Naturally there is a lot of new "unsold" recreational inventory around at the moment and this move by the BC government, while a little hard to understand is a welcome break for a sluggish real estate sector.
No rules in regards to the grant are available which actually refers to grants for second home purchases. The rules and regulations are expected to be published this month.
We do know it will be eligible for purchases of second homes up to $850,000 and is to be administered by the Province rather than CRA in relation to HST/GST rebates.
While it is a welcome break, it is curious in my mind why this would be administered as a grant/bonus. Years ago as the federal Conservatives toppled the long reigning Liberal government, there was talk of tax breaks/deferrals on capital gains for real estate investors. To me, this would appear to be a better long term strategy to assist with what is a very significant industry in our province.
For now however, we are dealing with a temporary grant program that will run from March this year to April next year with details coming as to what defines a second property and who is eligible for the rebate from the Province. We await with baited breath!
Ask me about how to start your search for investment properties in BC!
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The most frequently asked question regarding the new law is whether pets are specifically addressed by the law. Here's the answer! In situations where the driver becomes too involved with their pet, police could reasonably argue that the distraction is comparable to the specifically banned activities of reading, writing and grooming and lay a charge.
If a driver violates a new distracted driving provision and an existing provision in the Traffic Safety Act it would be up to the discretion of the officer as to if one or both charges would apply.
For the safety of both pets and road users, it is best if pets are secured in an appropriate pet carrier.
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In the past several weeks, I've received many questions from people about the new projects that are happening in the Southeast. So I thought I'd send out a quick FAQ email.
As you all may be aware, southeast Calgary has had a bad rap, but all that is going to change. There are many commercial and residential projects in the works to revitalize the mostly undeveloped and underestimated quadrant. Projects like a new hospital, the extension of the ring road and a new mega mall. Yes, you've heard about these projects in the news, but do you know how it will affect the areas in and surrounding the developments?
SOUTH HEALTH CAMPUS
Located at 196th Avenue and Deerfoot Trail S.E., expected to start offering urgent care and ambulatory clinics in 2012, with other services to follow the year after.
When it is fully operational, the hospital will accommodate over 2,400 staff members. A large percentage of these staff members will be from out of town and most probably will want to relocate close to their place of occupation. This will mean that sales of homes around the area will go up, prices will rise due to deman and rentals will increase as well.
To accomodate the potential new residents, home builders and new commercial developments will be busy building in the area.
SETON URBAN DISTRICT
The Seton Urban District is proposed to be the new "Downtown". Plans include residential condo and new housing projects, restaurants, trendy retail shops, spas and fitness, schools, and 24/7 night-life, this is to replica Kensington. Located in between Stoney Trail and Deerfoot Trail, it is the perfect location for visitors coming from the East, West and primarily South. With the major box store chains located at Deerfoot Meadows to the west, there is talk of more US retailers to be occupying more of this Southeast section to create rows and rows of major shopping centres to line the highway. Look for stores like Macy's, J Crew, Marshalls, and others...
SOUTH EAST STONEY TRAIL
The project consists of the construction and maintenance of 25 kilometres of six-lane roadway, 9 interchanges, 1 road flyover, 2 rail flyovers and 27 bridge structures, as well as 12 kilometres of Deerfoot Trail between Stoney Trail SE (currently Highway 22X) and the Highway 2A junction. Encompassing the city, the completion of this span of highway will bring more residents and retailers to the outskirts of the city. The convenience will attract many home owners, renters and developers.
For more information on each of these projects and more, visit the project's site below. Please feel free to contact me anytime if you have any questions. Thank you!
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Calgary’s own CIR REALTY has just been reported the number one leader in residential home sales in all of Calgary as well as the number one independent brokerage for sales for all of Canada in the new REAL Trends Report released this week.
With 4,317 transactions closed in 2010, locally owned and independent CIR REALTY beat out all other city brokerages.
Other competing Calgary brokerages that made the list of REAL Trends top 200 that followed close behind include Re/Max Central, Royal LePage Foothills, Re/Max House and Re/Max House Mountainview.
Ray Stader, Co-Owner and Manager of IT and Finance at CIR REALTY attribute the brokerage’s commitment to technological innovation, 24 hour REALTOR® support and an unsurpassed professional development program to this accomplishment.
"CIR REALTY has positioned itself as a high-tech, high-touch company that prides itself on developing highly educated REALTORS® and giving them the support they need to do their business from wherever it is they are located. Client’s appreciate the efficiency in which our REALTORS® are able to move through the different stages in the estate transaction process, giving them ease of mind and a great experience."
Stader was fortunate to attend the REAL Trends Conference in Denver last month and is thrilled that as an industry leader, REAL Trends continues to provide the most trusted and accurate residential brokerage research in the business.
"The information that REAL Trends is able to provide regarding the residential real estate industry across North America is crucial to the continual growth and improvement of CIR REALTY and other brokerages," Stader says.
CIR REALTY has over 700 REALTORS®, staff and management spread over four Calgary offices and 11 satellite offices outside of the City. The brokerage has been family owned and operated since 1983.
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By: RICHARD GILBERT, Journal of Commerce, May 18, 2011
The top four cities for economic growth in Canada in the next five years will be located in Saskatchewan and Alberta, according to a study by the Conference Board of Canada.
“Buoyed by the resources and energy sectors, the economies of Saskatoon, Calgary, Regina and Edmonton will post noticeably stronger growth than the other cities covered in this report,” said Mario Lefebvre, director of the Conference Board of Canada’s Centre for Municipal Studies.
According to the Spring 2011 edition of the Metropolitan Outlook, Saskatoon will lead the country with real GDP growth of 4.1 per cent in 2011.
Housing starts sprang back from a weak 2009 to hit 2,380 units last year—matching the recent 2007 peak,” said the report. “Both single-detached and multiple-unit starts rose smartly, helping to boost overall construction output by eight per cent—a strong rebound following a gain of less than 1.0 per cent in 2009.”
Population growth is projected to push housing starts higher in 2011 and 2012.
In the non-residential sector, work is expected to start on the $200 million River Landing complex in 2011.
The residential and commercial complex also involves the construction of a $30-million office building, as well as the $60 million Art Gallery of Saskatchewan.
City council has also decided to demolish the 103-year-old Traffic Bridge and build a new $30-million steel truss span with wider lanes.
The strength of residential and non-residential sectors are expected to stimulate construction activity, with an increase of 5.6 per cent in 2011, 6.9 per cent in 2012 and 5.9 per cent in 2013.
Real GDP is forecast to grow by 4.2 per cent between 2012 and 2015.
Calgary’s economy is expected to increase by 3.4 per cent in 2011 and 4.2 per cent between 2012 and 2015.
Despite a number of major projects already under way, total construction output is projected to increase by 1.8 per cent in 2011.
The latest estimates show that about $14.2-billion worth of energy-related projects are now under way in the province. Other non-residential projects that will boost construction activity in Calgary in 2011 include the $1-billion Quarry Park mixed-use development and a $1.3-billion hospital.
Housing starts are forecast to drop to 8,100 units in 2011, as strong new home prices take a bite out of demand.
In Regina, real GDP is expected to expand by 3.1 per cent in 2011 and by 3.8 per cent between 2012 and 2015.
The collapse of the domed stadium scheme in Regina has forced the city of Regina and the Saskatchewan government to consider new options for a stadium and redevelopment of 46 acres currently housing CP Rail’s container yards.
“These yards are to be relocated to what’s called a global transportation hub emerging in the city’s west,” said the report. “Indeed, development of this hub is positioned to be a significant growth driver in the medium term.”
Housing starts increased 45 per cent to 1,347 units in 2010 and are projected to moderate to near 1,280 units in 2011. However, housing starts are expected to jump above 1,400 units in 2012 and remain there for several years.
The construction industry is expected to expand 6.2 per cent in 2011 and an average of 5.6 per cent between 2012 and 2014.
Edmonton's economy is expected to rise 3.1 per cent in 2011 and 3.6 per cent between 2012 and 2015.
The Alberta government is investing $165 million in capital project in 2011, including a new police station in Terwillegar and other infrastructure projects.
Plans for a downtown arena to replace the aging Rexall Place still lack firm financial commitments.
The proposal would also see significant downtown redevelopment and a stop on a yet-to-be-built light rail transit line. Alberta has approved up to $492 million for this LRT route. Longer term, the city is weighing competing proposals from five international design teams to redevelop the City Centre Airport into a neighbourhood for 30,000 residents.
Housing starts rebounded from recession approach 10,000 units in 2010, which represents a 58 per cent increase from 2009. A pullback to near 7,600 units is expected for 2011, with starts hovering near 9,000 units per year afterwards, as population growth is expected to accelerate starting this year.
Edmonton’s construction sector declined by 24 per cent in the last two years, but is forecast to increase by 1.4 per cent in 2011.
The other Western cities covered in this report can expect moderate economic growth.
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