Best My Nest by CIR REALTY is a program that focuses on connecting you to the people, services and ideas in your community that make living your best life in your home possible. Excllusive to CIR's VIP Clients only - find out how to be a member!
Posted in: best my nest , buying houses , calgary real estate , cir realty , creb , home design , hoome renovation , how realtors help , selling houses
Best My Nest by CIR REALTY is a program that focuses on connecting you to the people, services and ideas in your community that make living your best life in your home possible. Excllusive to CIR's VIP Clients only - find out how to be a member!
Posted in: calgary condo for sale , calgary real estate , cleaning tips , foreclosures , jeff kahane law , legal advice , legal contracts , live in alberta , real estate deals , spring clean
Calgary's Resale Condominium Market Shows Signs of Life
Double digit year-over-year condominium sales growth
Total residential sales for the month of February 2013 totaled 1,711 units, a one per cent decline over the previous year. Accounting for the leap year in 2012, activity in the single family market resembles last year’s activity. However, even with one less day in the February 2013 figures, condominium sales have made significant gains increasing by 13 per cent relative to February 2012. Click Here
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Posted in: 2013 real estate , calgary , calgary buy sell , calgary mls , calgary real estate , mls listings , real estate 2013 , real estate listings , real estate new year
Just a quick update out to all my buyers as we go into the holiday season. Currently we are at 3600 houses and condos on the market. In a healthy good market, we would be sitting at about 5500 to 6000 listings, unhealthy would be 7000 and above. These numbers are calculated by my personal searches that I've used over the last 10 years.
What we have is very low inventory which may result in a very busy January market. My suggestion is to be ready, get all your finances together and have a clear idea of exactly what you want. I predict it's going to be a quick start right after the holidays so as soon as we see more inventory come on in the new year, we may have to move fast!
Contact me NOW if you are looking to buy or sell! We can get a head start right after the fireworks!!!
Posted in: calgary real estate , canada economy , mls listings canada , real estate market canada , toronto real estate , vancouver real estate
The Canadian Real Estate Association suggests Calgary's housing market has shifted from a position of balanced to a seller's market.
So far I am #2 in my office for June Top Producer Standings and in the Top 5 of CIR overall! Thank you to all my Valued Clients for your support! Whoo-hoo!!!
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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.
Posted in: calgary real estate , canadian spending , CIR Realty , finance , financial times , how to save , market trends , money talks , news , real estate , your finance
In a growing trend, on the cusp of RRSP season, yet another poll shows that Canadians, by and large do not feel prepared for retirement.
Furthermore, many do recognize the link between retirement success and developing and implementing strategy: “Planning ahead makes a significant difference, according to the poll - among Canadians who say they have a long term investment plan for retirement, 76 per cent say they are financially prepared for retirement, versus just 25 per cent among those who don't have a plan.”
“Planning for retirement is something almost every Canadian thinks about at this time of year, and our poll results show that many would like to be further ahead when it comes to their retirement plans," commented Christina Kramer, Executive Vice President, Retail Distribution and Channel Strategy, CIBC. "Our poll results reveal a split in the country when it comes to retirement, with those who are actively planning ahead are about three times more likely to feel prepared for their future retirement than those who have not yet mapped out their retirement strategy."
For Baby Boomers who feel panicky, and that time has run out in advance of their retirement, fear not. There is no time like the present, even when it comes to retirement saving and planning.
Furthermore, previous CIBC research shows that 69% of Canadians intend to keep working through retirement age, so for many there is flexibility in terms of saving deadline.
There is also benefit, no matter what stage of life you are in, to understanding what you are investing in, and how that fits into your overall planning. The temptation for many is to wait to the last minute of the RRSP deadline, which can sometimes result in rushed decisions.
“We're all busy, and some Canadians have fallen into the habit of making their RRSP contribution just before the deadline without taking the time to sit down and understand where they are versus their goals, and what they might need to change to keep making progress," added Ms. Kramer. "We encourage Canadians to make this the year you use the time before the contribution deadline to look at your broader financial picture, particularly given the difference we see it making in the confidence people have in their retirement plans."
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With all the Grow Ops being busted these days, I thought I should bring to your attention the ones that were not busted but instead moved. In this case, how can you tell if a house was a former marijuana grow op if the police did not catch it first? Here are some signs that you can look for.
IDENTIFYING A FORMER GROW OP
Never assume the location is too bizarre or inconvenient to be a grow op. Police
have found grow operations in new housing developments, in large and small
homes, in basements and attics, in high-rise apartments and warehouses, and
in outbuildings. Marijuana grow operations have even been discovered in
vehicles like tractor-trailers, campers, motor homes and railroad cars.
In one Montreal raid, a grower used his own basement but tapped the
electricity from the adjacent garage of his neighbor. In another, police
discovered that every second new house on a street in a new subdivision
had been converted into grow ops — six houses in all. Police have noted an
increasing sophistication in illegal operations.
Grow ops often require extensive cleanup and repair. It is possible that these
repairs were never made and the real damage is hidden. Noticeable signs that
you may be dealing with a former grow op include:
• Mould in corners where the walls and ceilings meet.
• Signs of roof vents.
• Painted concrete floors in the basement, with circular marks of where
pots once were.
• Evidence of tampering with the electric meter (damaged or broken
seals) or the ground around it.
• Unusual or modified wiring on the exterior of the house.
• Brownish stains around the soffit that bleeds down along the siding.
• Concrete masonry patches, or alterations on the inside of the garage.
• Patterns of screw holes on the walls.
• Alteration of fire places.
• Denting on front doors (from police ramming the door).
It is our responsibility as both Listing and Buying Agents to do our due dilligence for our Clients to fully disclose any grow op activity in properties. However, in some cases, we are not aware of this if the house has no record. It is always BEST and advised that you request a full home inspection by a reputable and certified inspector. By doing a thorough examination of the vents and electrical, the inspector may be able to spot a former grow op.
Between 2005 and 2009, an average of 2,650 people died each year and an average of 12,890 people were injured in home fires. Cooking fires were the leading cause of those fires (40 percent) and associated injuries (36 percent). The majority of these cooking fires were initiated by the ignition of food or cooking materials. In less than 1 percent of cooking fires, clothing was ignited first, but that led to a disproportionate 15 percent of cooking-fire fatalities.
In order to avoid these unnecessary dangers, follow these safety tips from NFPA:
And in the case of a fire:
If you’re in the market for new appliances, read our buying advice for ranges and cooktops and wall ovens. Consider one with safety features that will let you know if the surface is still hot and lock the controls so children can’t turn the unit on.
Posted in: alberta , barry klatt , calgary , calgary real estate , CIR Realty , financial times , market trends , money talks , news , properties , real estate
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!
Posted in: alberta , barry klatt , calgary , calgary mls listings , calgary real estate , cir , CIR Realty , market trends , mls , money talks , news , properties , real estate , realtor
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.
Posted in: alberta , barry klatt , calgary real estate , financial times , market trends , news , real estate , your finance
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.
Posted in: barry klatt , calgary mls listings , calgary real estate , CIR Realty , financial times , how to save , market trends , mls , money talks , real estate , realtor , your finance
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