The Calgary Herald today released a economic forecast provided by Scotiabank.  I have posted the information below, with a link back to the original article at the Calgary Herald website.
Alberta will lead the country in economic growth in 2011, building on a resource-led rebound this year, a new report suggests.

In its latest forecast released Wednesday, Scotiabank expects Alberta's economy to expand 3.5 per cent, the most growth among the provinces. The province is expected to post three per cent growth this year.

"Resource-related activity is ramping up alongside strong emerging-market demand for key industrial products, which along with a weaker U.S. dollar, is boosting commodity prices," said Scotia Economics economist Alex Koustas in a release.

The report also noted that Alberta's job market has been slow to catch up to national gains, but expects "substantial" improvements in 2011.

The housing market posted strong rebound in starts, with potential for steady gains as in-migration return to growth, it noted.

Housing starts have recovered sharply this year after steep declines in 2008-09. "Net flow turned positive in the first half of 2010, a trend that should continue as job prospects improve, supporting the outlook for retail and housing activity," Scotiabank said.

The pace of economic growth is more cautious than other recent forecasts, which also show the province to return to the head of the pack next year. RBC Economics pegs Alberta's economy to grow 4.3 per cent next year.

Rising prices for commodities such as oil and metals will play a role in bolstering certain parts of the country, the report said.

 
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It was disappointing to see prices and home sales slide again last month after a slight increase in September.  Home sales in the city of Calgary were down month-over-month in October 2010. The number of single family homes sold in October dropped 7% from September.

Buyers are still remaining cautious, keeping the market soft.  The year over year sales continued to decline in October. 

The average prices of single family homes in the city of Calgary in October 2010 decreased 3% from September 2010, when the average price was $460,278, and a 4 per cent decrease from October 2009, when the average price was $462,465.

The fact remains that the market is still soft and sellers need to be cognizant of this as it affects what they can reasonably expect to list their homes for if deciding to sell.  

On the up side, there were 22% fewer listings of homes in October than September, lowering inventory (number of homes available for sale) which in the long run will help to balance the market.

These stats were released on November 1st by the Calgary Real Board (CREB ®).

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I frequently receive requests for Market Evaluations from clients and potential clients.  In today’s market it is so important to know what our options are, and what the true value of our home is before putting it on the market.  Each REALTOR® has a different way of determining what price they will recommend to their clients when someone requests a market evaluation.  Often the home owner is surprised at the price they are provided by the REALTOR® who they have requested the information from.

I thought in this month’s newsletter I would provide some very basic information as to the process I go through when determining home prices, and how I come to the price that I provide when fulfilling requests for evaluations.

Most of my requests for evaluations come to me via my website.  The home owner provides me with their address, and basic information about their home and request for a price evaluation of their home.

When I receive this information I do a full market analysis for the area specific to the neighbourhood in which the home is located. 

An analysis will include research into the pricing of homes that are actively for sale in the area, as well as the prices of homes recently sold. It may also take into consideration nearby amenities such as schools and shopping facilities.  (Homes near a school will sometimes have a better potential for sale than those that are not, and therefore may command a better price than the same home that is not near such amenities.)

Once I have all the figures and have determined a price range for a home, I then send the home owner an email advising them what I believe the true value of the home is based on the information they have provided for me.

Now comes the insight that every home owner needs to know and understand about the options REALTORS®  have to consider when we are providing home evaluations to potential sellers.  There is a reality to realty!

I think the easiest way to explain how a REALTOR® may work in providing initial evaluations to a home owner is to give you an example:

Upon receiving the information from a home owner about their home, I research the area, the current market, the number of homes that are currently for sale in the area with their current listing prices, and a list of homes recently sold in the area and the prices those homes have sold for.  All the homes I research are based on the same criteria of information the home owner has sent to me, so that I can determine as closely as possible the most appropriate price based on similar homes.

It might look something like this:

Homes Actively For Sale – 9 homes found listed in the surrounding area that are similar in size and structure with similar finishing as the home owner.  They are on the market at prices ranging from $445,000.00 to $499,000.00.  Upon closer look, two of the homes have lowered their prices recently to the lower range of pricing.  Most of the newer listings are priced in the mid-range, and have also lowered their prices from their initial prices, and most of the homes have been on the market for over six months, with one of them being on the market as long as two years.

Homes Recently Sold – Two to five homes that have been the most recently sold that meet the same criteria were sold at prices ranging from $410,000.00 to $439,000.00.  In looking at the original listing prices of these homes, they had been listed from $440,000.00 to $470,000.00.  Four of the five homes sold only after the owners relisted at a lower price. Most sold at the upper range of the sold prices however were on the market for over 6 months before being sold.

Looking into sold properties is more important than comparing the pricing of active listings (properties that are currently for sale).  Sold properties indicate how much buyers are willing to pay for your home given the current market. Therefore when receiving comparable home prices from your REALTOR® is more important to put more weight on the pricing of homes being sold than the prices of those being listed when looking for an accurate price point.

My Pricing Determination – As a REALTOR® I have an obligation to anyone who contacts me to provide them with the best and most accurate information possible. However I also have to consider the position of the home owner. 

Price Determination Example 1 - On home evaluations for potential clients, knowing that they want to get the most value for their home as is possible, if I really want to obtain them as a client I can take the information I have gleaned from my research and price their home in the high range and send them a recommendation of listing between $460,000.00 to $470,000.00. 

By doing this, the home owner may get excited about using me as a REALTOR®  and choose to list their home with me.  I can then initially list the home at that price, however I know from my research that unless there are special circumstances, it is unlikely the home will sell at that price, so why would I want to give my client unrealistic expectations?  Well, if I price the home at a higher price, and the price is similar to other homes that are actively for sale in the area, it is more likely that the client will decide to list his home and that he will list his home with me.

However, experience has proven, time and again that in the end, the homeowner will in most cases over time, agree to lower the price to a level that is more reasonable to potential buyers.  He or she has to in order to get buyers to come through the home.  REALTORS® know this and often when providing initial market evaluations can use this practice to obtain the initial listing.

Price Determination Example 2 – Taking the same information and research, I determine that the home is likely to sell at a price that is within a price range of $430,000.00 and $450,000.00 depending on upgrades and other information that can only be determined upon viewing the actual property.  I know that by keeping the price estimate truer to the reality of what the current market is at, there is less likelihood for disappointment for my home owner.  They are not going to have unreasonable expectations and if the price has to be lowered, it will not be as significant a drop in order to sell the property as it would have to be in Example 1.

When I provide estimates, I prefer to look at what I believe the true value of the home is and provide my recommendations to the home owner based on what I believe I can sell their home for in a reasonable period of time.  I prefer to be conservative in my estimates as it is always easier to explain to a client reasons why they should increase their listing price once I have actually attended their home, rather than try to explain why my online evaluation is over estimated and that they need to lower the price when the time comes to list!

Every REALTOR®  has their own reasons for pricing homes the way they do, however regardless of what pricing is done, the fact remains, the market always sells at the market  price regardless at how the initial listing is priced.  It’s imperative that in order to get the best price for your home that you remain competitive, yet flexible in pricing.  How flexible is entirely dependent upon how quickly you want to move your home in the market.    

Think of it from a buyer’s perspective.  If you have the option of looking at 9 homes in the area you want to purchase in, and all those homes fit the same or very similar criteria, and all are in similar condition, are you going to spend an extra $50,000.00 you don’t need to spend?

True Pricing Determination – The most accurate way to determine what you should list your home for in order to get your highest price in the most reasonable amount of time is to have a REALTOR® attend your home to do an onsite home evaluation.  REALTORS® know what upgrades in your home can accentuate the value of your home and physically attending the residence and viewing your home is the only truly accurate method of determining the most realistic price of your home.  It also provides you an opportunity to ask questions that are important to you in regards to not only potential listing price, but also market timing.  An experienced REALTOR®  can often provide you excellent insight that can help you meet your personal goals.

Many of you who are recipients of my monthly newsletter are actively researching the market to either buy a home or sell your current home or both.  I hope this newsletter helps to explain why an online evaluation often seems on the lower end of the market and have been curious as to why your home is evaluated at the low end of the market. 

Current Market Trends – It is important to understand the significance of the current market trend when pricing your home as well.  Without taking into account current market trends, many homes are overpriced and simply won’t sell if they have not priced themselves according to the current market trends.  Remember too, that when you sell at lower prices, you are also in a position to buy your new home at a lower price as well.  Timing is important, but swings both for selling and buying.  These are important things to factor into your decision to sell and what price point to set.  Good advice from a realty specialist can help you make those decisions.

Free Onsite Evaluations - If you would like an accurate evaluation of your home and recommendations based on the current market I would be pleased to visit your home and provide you a full onsite appraisal, provide you a package with the latest in market information to help you make a sound decision regarding your home and answer any questions you might have regarding the market.  There is never any obligation and I am always ready to help.

If you would like to have a current market evaluation done on your home to determine what your next step should be, I’m here for you.  My business is made from sincerely helping people achieve their personal goals, not trying to convince them to sell if it is not in their best interest.  Nor will I suggest an unreasonably high listing price in order to obtain your business.  I will give you straight facts and advice and the rest is up to you!

Please don’t hesitate to call me at any time.  My personal cell phone number is 403-399-0809, or if you prefer, my personal Email of Natasha@HouseHuntingAdventures.com.  There is never any obligation and I understand and respect that you may only need an evaluation for current interest and that you may not even be in the market to sell your home.  I welcome any opportunities to do onsite market evaluations and enjoy meeting people and providing any market insight you may be in need of.

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Secondary Suites Grant Program:

Getting Started

What is the Grant Program?

The Secondary Suite Grant Program offers a grant of up to $25,000 to cover up to 70 % of the costs of developing or upgrading a legal secondary suite. It was launched in April 2009 and will run until December 2012.

How can I apply?

·         Check out your eligibility by answering the questions below.

·         Grant Program Brochure: download & read.

·         Grant Application Form: download, complete, sign and return.

·         Grant Agreement: download, complete, sign and return.

·         Questions? Call Jacquie Mercier Mc-Murrer on 403-268-5406.

If you answer YES to these questions then you are eligible to apply for the Grant Program…

·         Is your property within a land-use district that allows a secondary suite?
Visit calgary.ca/myproperty to find out what your land-use district is.
Visit calgary.ca/secondarysuites to find out if your land-use district allows secondary suites.

·         Is your property a single detached home?
(i.e. You don't share any walls with a neighbour)

·         Are you the registered property owner?

·         Do you live in the primary home?

·         Are you prepared to rent out your suite at no more than the maximum rent for 5 years?

·         Are you prepared to accept all the terms of the Grant Agreement?

What do I have to agree to?

·         You must contribute a minimum of 30% of the costs of developing or upgrading your suite.

·         The rent you charge must be no more than the average market rent for a similar property in Calgary. This is currently $855 (including utilities). This information is updated each year in the Calgary Mortgage and Housing Corporation rental review - www.cmhc.ca.

·         You must enter into the Grant Agreement and your suite must be available for rent for 5 years.

·         You must live in the home throughout the Grant Agreement term.

·         You must provide information annually to show that your suite was available for rent at no more than an average market rent.

What is a secondary suite?

A secondary suite (also known as a basement suite, mother-in-law suite or granny suite) is a self-contained living space located on the same property as a detached house. It has a separate entrance, cooking, sleeping and bathing facilities. For more information, go to calgary.ca/secondarysuites.

Is a secondary suite a good idea for me?

Developing or upgrading a secondary suite may take some time to complete and require a significant financial investment by you. You should gather as much information as possible before making your decision about whether to move ahead. Download more information from the right hand side of this page that can help you.
 
A secondary suite works well for some tenants while providing welcome additional income for landlords. Tenants often enjoy living in a residential neighbourhood with a backyard, access to laundry, close to schools and parks and they may get along well with you as their landlord. However, it does not work well for everyone.
 

You can often avoid conflicts about noise, utility costs, privacy, sharing the backyard, laundry, etc. by ensuring you have an agreement in writing, which you've discussed in advance and that both you and your tenant have signed. As a landlord you have rights and responsibilities, which you need to be aware of before you make the decision to rent out your suite. You can get more information from servicealberta.ca, landlordandtenant.org, and calapt.org.

Why is The City offering a Grant Program?

The City of Calgary is offering a Secondary Suites Grant Program as part of the Enterprise Housing Program. The Enterprise Housing Program is designed to incent the private and non-profit sectors to produce housing that is affordable.

 

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Calgary, November 1, 2010 – Home sales in the city of Calgary were down month-over-month in October 2010, showing signs that buyers still remain cautious, despite signs of economic recovery. Year-over-year sales continued to trend lower in the month of October, according to figures released today by the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB ®).

 

The number of single family home sales in the month of October 2010 shrank by 7 per cent at 888, compared with September 2010, when sales were 958. The number of condominium sales for the month of October 2010 was 310. This was a decrease of 15 per cent from the 366 condominium transactions recorded in September 2010

.

Year-over-year, the number of single family homes sold in October 2010 in the city of Calgary were down 31 per cent. In October 2009, single family home sales totalled 1,285. Condominium sales saw a decrease of 48 per cent from the same time a year ago. In October 2009, condominium sales were 601.

 

“Buyers remain cautious, perhaps waiting to feel a little more confidence in Calgary’s economic growth and their own job security,” says Diane Scott, president of CREB ®.

 

“We believe economic recovery will build momentum into 2011 as the outlook for oil and gas and other sectors continues to improve. This, coupled with low interest rates and improved  affordability, should eventually help to stimulate Calgary’s housing market,” adds Scott.

 

The average price of a single family home in the city of Calgary in October 2010 was $444,744, showing a 3 per cent decrease from September 2010, when the average price was $460,278, and a 4 per cent decrease from October 2009, when the average price was $462,465. The average price of a condominium in the city of Calgary in October 2010 was $287,793, showing a 1 per cent increase from September 2010, when the average price was $284,028 and no significant change over last year, when the average price was $289,155. Average price information can be useful in establishing trends over time, but does not indicate actual prices in centres comprised of widely divergent neighbourhoods, or account for price differentials between geographical areas.

 

The median price of a single family home in the city of Calgary for October 2010 was $387,900, showing a 1 per cent decrease from September 2010 when the median price was $390,000. This was a 5 per cent decrease from October 2009, when the median price was $410,000. The median price of a condominium in October 2010 was $255,000, showing a 4 per cent decrease from September 2010, when the median price was $265,000, and a 3 per cent decrease from October 2009, when it was $263,500.

 

All city of Calgary MLS® statistics include properties listed and sold only within Calgary’s city limits. The median price is the price that is midway between the least expensive and most expensive home sold in an area during a given period of time. During that time, half the buyers bought homes that cost more than the median price and half bought homes for less than the median

price.

 

“Our average price is being buoyed by more sales in the million dollar plus category. Despite a slowdown in certain market segments, homes sold in the city of Calgary at one million dollars or

more have actually seen an increase of more than 15 per cent when compared to the same time one year ago. This boost in sales is, indeed, a bright spot in our current market,” says Scott.

 

Single family listings in the city of Calgary added for the month of October 2010 totalled 1,765, a decrease of 22 per cent from September 2010 when 2,252 new listings were added, and showing a decrease of 3 per cent from October 2009, when 1,819 new listings came to the market.

 

Condominium new listings in the city of Calgary added for October 2010 were 721, down 22 per cent from September 2010, when the MLS®  saw 921 condo listings coming to the market. This is a decrease of 16 per cent from October 2009, when new condominium listings added were 859.
 

“We are seeing some decline in the number of new listings coming on to the market. A continuing decline in supply will help bring the market into balance,” says Scott.

 

“We believe we will see a tempering of our inventory levels, as some sellers offer marginal reductions in prices, or others choose to pull their home off the market for a period of time,” notes Scott. “Homeowners should consider speaking with their REALTOR® about their current marketing strategy—there are always options in every market.”

 

“Overall, we’re cautiously optimistic that Calgary’s economic recovery will pick up as we move into 2011—but in-migration will be needed to fuel a sustained recovery in Calgary’s housing market,” says Scott.
 
For more detailed information and charts on current market trends for October visit:
 
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The Calgary Herald today released a economic forecast provided by Scotiabank.  I have posted the information below, with a link back to the original article at the Calgary Herald website.
Alberta will lead the country in economic growth in 2011, building on a resource-led rebound this year, a new report suggests.

In its latest forecast released Wednesday, Scotiabank expects Alberta's economy to expand 3.5 per cent, the most growth among the provinces. The province is expected to post three per cent growth this year.

"Resource-related activity is ramping up alongside strong emerging-market demand for key industrial products, which along with a weaker U.S. dollar, is boosting commodity prices," said Scotia Economics economist Alex Koustas in a release.

The report also noted that Alberta's job market has been slow to catch up to national gains, but expects "substantial" improvements in 2011.

The housing market posted strong rebound in starts, with potential for steady gains as in-migration return to growth, it noted.

Housing starts have recovered sharply this year after steep declines in 2008-09. "Net flow turned positive in the first half of 2010, a trend that should continue as job prospects improve, supporting the outlook for retail and housing activity," Scotiabank said.

The pace of economic growth is more cautious than other recent forecasts, which also show the province to return to the head of the pack next year. RBC Economics pegs Alberta's economy to grow 4.3 per cent next year.

Rising prices for commodities such as oil and metals will play a role in bolstering certain parts of the country, the report said.

 
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It was disappointing to see prices and home sales slide again last month after a slight increase in September.  Home sales in the city of Calgary were down month-over-month in October 2010. The number of single family homes sold in October dropped 7% from September.

Buyers are still remaining cautious, keeping the market soft.  The year over year sales continued to decline in October. 

The average prices of single family homes in the city of Calgary in October 2010 decreased 3% from September 2010, when the average price was $460,278, and a 4 per cent decrease from October 2009, when the average price was $462,465.

The fact remains that the market is still soft and sellers need to be cognizant of this as it affects what they can reasonably expect to list their homes for if deciding to sell.  

On the up side, there were 22% fewer listings of homes in October than September, lowering inventory (number of homes available for sale) which in the long run will help to balance the market.

These stats were released on November 1st by the Calgary Real Board (CREB ®).

Read full post

I frequently receive requests for Market Evaluations from clients and potential clients.  In today’s market it is so important to know what our options are, and what the true value of our home is before putting it on the market.  Each REALTOR® has a different way of determining what price they will recommend to their clients when someone requests a market evaluation.  Often the home owner is surprised at the price they are provided by the REALTOR® who they have requested the information from.

I thought in this month’s newsletter I would provide some very basic information as to the process I go through when determining home prices, and how I come to the price that I provide when fulfilling requests for evaluations.

Most of my requests for evaluations come to me via my website.  The home owner provides me with their address, and basic information about their home and request for a price evaluation of their home.

When I receive this information I do a full market analysis for the area specific to the neighbourhood in which the home is located. 

An analysis will include research into the pricing of homes that are actively for sale in the area, as well as the prices of homes recently sold. It may also take into consideration nearby amenities such as schools and shopping facilities.  (Homes near a school will sometimes have a better potential for sale than those that are not, and therefore may command a better price than the same home that is not near such amenities.)

Once I have all the figures and have determined a price range for a home, I then send the home owner an email advising them what I believe the true value of the home is based on the information they have provided for me.

Now comes the insight that every home owner needs to know and understand about the options REALTORS®  have to consider when we are providing home evaluations to potential sellers.  There is a reality to realty!

I think the easiest way to explain how a REALTOR® may work in providing initial evaluations to a home owner is to give you an example:

Upon receiving the information from a home owner about their home, I research the area, the current market, the number of homes that are currently for sale in the area with their current listing prices, and a list of homes recently sold in the area and the prices those homes have sold for.  All the homes I research are based on the same criteria of information the home owner has sent to me, so that I can determine as closely as possible the most appropriate price based on similar homes.

It might look something like this:

Homes Actively For Sale – 9 homes found listed in the surrounding area that are similar in size and structure with similar finishing as the home owner.  They are on the market at prices ranging from $445,000.00 to $499,000.00.  Upon closer look, two of the homes have lowered their prices recently to the lower range of pricing.  Most of the newer listings are priced in the mid-range, and have also lowered their prices from their initial prices, and most of the homes have been on the market for over six months, with one of them being on the market as long as two years.

Homes Recently Sold – Two to five homes that have been the most recently sold that meet the same criteria were sold at prices ranging from $410,000.00 to $439,000.00.  In looking at the original listing prices of these homes, they had been listed from $440,000.00 to $470,000.00.  Four of the five homes sold only after the owners relisted at a lower price. Most sold at the upper range of the sold prices however were on the market for over 6 months before being sold.

Looking into sold properties is more important than comparing the pricing of active listings (properties that are currently for sale).  Sold properties indicate how much buyers are willing to pay for your home given the current market. Therefore when receiving comparable home prices from your REALTOR® is more important to put more weight on the pricing of homes being sold than the prices of those being listed when looking for an accurate price point.

My Pricing Determination – As a REALTOR® I have an obligation to anyone who contacts me to provide them with the best and most accurate information possible. However I also have to consider the position of the home owner. 

Price Determination Example 1 - On home evaluations for potential clients, knowing that they want to get the most value for their home as is possible, if I really want to obtain them as a client I can take the information I have gleaned from my research and price their home in the high range and send them a recommendation of listing between $460,000.00 to $470,000.00. 

By doing this, the home owner may get excited about using me as a REALTOR®  and choose to list their home with me.  I can then initially list the home at that price, however I know from my research that unless there are special circumstances, it is unlikely the home will sell at that price, so why would I want to give my client unrealistic expectations?  Well, if I price the home at a higher price, and the price is similar to other homes that are actively for sale in the area, it is more likely that the client will decide to list his home and that he will list his home with me.

However, experience has proven, time and again that in the end, the homeowner will in most cases over time, agree to lower the price to a level that is more reasonable to potential buyers.  He or she has to in order to get buyers to come through the home.  REALTORS® know this and often when providing initial market evaluations can use this practice to obtain the initial listing.

Price Determination Example 2 – Taking the same information and research, I determine that the home is likely to sell at a price that is within a price range of $430,000.00 and $450,000.00 depending on upgrades and other information that can only be determined upon viewing the actual property.  I know that by keeping the price estimate truer to the reality of what the current market is at, there is less likelihood for disappointment for my home owner.  They are not going to have unreasonable expectations and if the price has to be lowered, it will not be as significant a drop in order to sell the property as it would have to be in Example 1.

When I provide estimates, I prefer to look at what I believe the true value of the home is and provide my recommendations to the home owner based on what I believe I can sell their home for in a reasonable period of time.  I prefer to be conservative in my estimates as it is always easier to explain to a client reasons why they should increase their listing price once I have actually attended their home, rather than try to explain why my online evaluation is over estimated and that they need to lower the price when the time comes to list!

Every REALTOR®  has their own reasons for pricing homes the way they do, however regardless of what pricing is done, the fact remains, the market always sells at the market  price regardless at how the initial listing is priced.  It’s imperative that in order to get the best price for your home that you remain competitive, yet flexible in pricing.  How flexible is entirely dependent upon how quickly you want to move your home in the market.    

Think of it from a buyer’s perspective.  If you have the option of looking at 9 homes in the area you want to purchase in, and all those homes fit the same or very similar criteria, and all are in similar condition, are you going to spend an extra $50,000.00 you don’t need to spend?

True Pricing Determination – The most accurate way to determine what you should list your home for in order to get your highest price in the most reasonable amount of time is to have a REALTOR® attend your home to do an onsite home evaluation.  REALTORS® know what upgrades in your home can accentuate the value of your home and physically attending the residence and viewing your home is the only truly accurate method of determining the most realistic price of your home.  It also provides you an opportunity to ask questions that are important to you in regards to not only potential listing price, but also market timing.  An experienced REALTOR®  can often provide you excellent insight that can help you meet your personal goals.

Many of you who are recipients of my monthly newsletter are actively researching the market to either buy a home or sell your current home or both.  I hope this newsletter helps to explain why an online evaluation often seems on the lower end of the market and have been curious as to why your home is evaluated at the low end of the market. 

Current Market Trends – It is important to understand the significance of the current market trend when pricing your home as well.  Without taking into account current market trends, many homes are overpriced and simply won’t sell if they have not priced themselves according to the current market trends.  Remember too, that when you sell at lower prices, you are also in a position to buy your new home at a lower price as well.  Timing is important, but swings both for selling and buying.  These are important things to factor into your decision to sell and what price point to set.  Good advice from a realty specialist can help you make those decisions.

Free Onsite Evaluations - If you would like an accurate evaluation of your home and recommendations based on the current market I would be pleased to visit your home and provide you a full onsite appraisal, provide you a package with the latest in market information to help you make a sound decision regarding your home and answer any questions you might have regarding the market.  There is never any obligation and I am always ready to help.

If you would like to have a current market evaluation done on your home to determine what your next step should be, I’m here for you.  My business is made from sincerely helping people achieve their personal goals, not trying to convince them to sell if it is not in their best interest.  Nor will I suggest an unreasonably high listing price in order to obtain your business.  I will give you straight facts and advice and the rest is up to you!

Please don’t hesitate to call me at any time.  My personal cell phone number is 403-399-0809, or if you prefer, my personal Email of Natasha@HouseHuntingAdventures.com.  There is never any obligation and I understand and respect that you may only need an evaluation for current interest and that you may not even be in the market to sell your home.  I welcome any opportunities to do onsite market evaluations and enjoy meeting people and providing any market insight you may be in need of.

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Secondary Suites Grant Program:

Getting Started

What is the Grant Program?

The Secondary Suite Grant Program offers a grant of up to $25,000 to cover up to 70 % of the costs of developing or upgrading a legal secondary suite. It was launched in April 2009 and will run until December 2012.

How can I apply?

·         Check out your eligibility by answering the questions below.

·         Grant Program Brochure: download & read.

·         Grant Application Form: download, complete, sign and return.

·         Grant Agreement: download, complete, sign and return.

·         Questions? Call Jacquie Mercier Mc-Murrer on 403-268-5406.

If you answer YES to these questions then you are eligible to apply for the Grant Program…

·         Is your property within a land-use district that allows a secondary suite?
Visit calgary.ca/myproperty to find out what your land-use district is.
Visit calgary.ca/secondarysuites to find out if your land-use district allows secondary suites.

·         Is your property a single detached home?
(i.e. You don't share any walls with a neighbour)

·         Are you the registered property owner?

·         Do you live in the primary home?

·         Are you prepared to rent out your suite at no more than the maximum rent for 5 years?

·         Are you prepared to accept all the terms of the Grant Agreement?

What do I have to agree to?

·         You must contribute a minimum of 30% of the costs of developing or upgrading your suite.

·         The rent you charge must be no more than the average market rent for a similar property in Calgary. This is currently $855 (including utilities). This information is updated each year in the Calgary Mortgage and Housing Corporation rental review - www.cmhc.ca.

·         You must enter into the Grant Agreement and your suite must be available for rent for 5 years.

·         You must live in the home throughout the Grant Agreement term.

·         You must provide information annually to show that your suite was available for rent at no more than an average market rent.

What is a secondary suite?

A secondary suite (also known as a basement suite, mother-in-law suite or granny suite) is a self-contained living space located on the same property as a detached house. It has a separate entrance, cooking, sleeping and bathing facilities. For more information, go to calgary.ca/secondarysuites.

Is a secondary suite a good idea for me?

Developing or upgrading a secondary suite may take some time to complete and require a significant financial investment by you. You should gather as much information as possible before making your decision about whether to move ahead. Download more information from the right hand side of this page that can help you.
 
A secondary suite works well for some tenants while providing welcome additional income for landlords. Tenants often enjoy living in a residential neighbourhood with a backyard, access to laundry, close to schools and parks and they may get along well with you as their landlord. However, it does not work well for everyone.
 

You can often avoid conflicts about noise, utility costs, privacy, sharing the backyard, laundry, etc. by ensuring you have an agreement in writing, which you've discussed in advance and that both you and your tenant have signed. As a landlord you have rights and responsibilities, which you need to be aware of before you make the decision to rent out your suite. You can get more information from servicealberta.ca, landlordandtenant.org, and calapt.org.

Why is The City offering a Grant Program?

The City of Calgary is offering a Secondary Suites Grant Program as part of the Enterprise Housing Program. The Enterprise Housing Program is designed to incent the private and non-profit sectors to produce housing that is affordable.

 

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Calgary, November 1, 2010 – Home sales in the city of Calgary were down month-over-month in October 2010, showing signs that buyers still remain cautious, despite signs of economic recovery. Year-over-year sales continued to trend lower in the month of October, according to figures released today by the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB ®).

 

The number of single family home sales in the month of October 2010 shrank by 7 per cent at 888, compared with September 2010, when sales were 958. The number of condominium sales for the month of October 2010 was 310. This was a decrease of 15 per cent from the 366 condominium transactions recorded in September 2010

.

Year-over-year, the number of single family homes sold in October 2010 in the city of Calgary were down 31 per cent. In October 2009, single family home sales totalled 1,285. Condominium sales saw a decrease of 48 per cent from the same time a year ago. In October 2009, condominium sales were 601.

 

“Buyers remain cautious, perhaps waiting to feel a little more confidence in Calgary’s economic growth and their own job security,” says Diane Scott, president of CREB ®.

 

“We believe economic recovery will build momentum into 2011 as the outlook for oil and gas and other sectors continues to improve. This, coupled with low interest rates and improved  affordability, should eventually help to stimulate Calgary’s housing market,” adds Scott.

 

The average price of a single family home in the city of Calgary in October 2010 was $444,744, showing a 3 per cent decrease from September 2010, when the average price was $460,278, and a 4 per cent decrease from October 2009, when the average price was $462,465. The average price of a condominium in the city of Calgary in October 2010 was $287,793, showing a 1 per cent increase from September 2010, when the average price was $284,028 and no significant change over last year, when the average price was $289,155. Average price information can be useful in establishing trends over time, but does not indicate actual prices in centres comprised of widely divergent neighbourhoods, or account for price differentials between geographical areas.

 

The median price of a single family home in the city of Calgary for October 2010 was $387,900, showing a 1 per cent decrease from September 2010 when the median price was $390,000. This was a 5 per cent decrease from October 2009, when the median price was $410,000. The median price of a condominium in October 2010 was $255,000, showing a 4 per cent decrease from September 2010, when the median price was $265,000, and a 3 per cent decrease from October 2009, when it was $263,500.

 

All city of Calgary MLS® statistics include properties listed and sold only within Calgary’s city limits. The median price is the price that is midway between the least expensive and most expensive home sold in an area during a given period of time. During that time, half the buyers bought homes that cost more than the median price and half bought homes for less than the median

price.

 

“Our average price is being buoyed by more sales in the million dollar plus category. Despite a slowdown in certain market segments, homes sold in the city of Calgary at one million dollars or

more have actually seen an increase of more than 15 per cent when compared to the same time one year ago. This boost in sales is, indeed, a bright spot in our current market,” says Scott.

 

Single family listings in the city of Calgary added for the month of October 2010 totalled 1,765, a decrease of 22 per cent from September 2010 when 2,252 new listings were added, and showing a decrease of 3 per cent from October 2009, when 1,819 new listings came to the market.

 

Condominium new listings in the city of Calgary added for October 2010 were 721, down 22 per cent from September 2010, when the MLS®  saw 921 condo listings coming to the market. This is a decrease of 16 per cent from October 2009, when new condominium listings added were 859.
 

“We are seeing some decline in the number of new listings coming on to the market. A continuing decline in supply will help bring the market into balance,” says Scott.

 

“We believe we will see a tempering of our inventory levels, as some sellers offer marginal reductions in prices, or others choose to pull their home off the market for a period of time,” notes Scott. “Homeowners should consider speaking with their REALTOR® about their current marketing strategy—there are always options in every market.”

 

“Overall, we’re cautiously optimistic that Calgary’s economic recovery will pick up as we move into 2011—but in-migration will be needed to fuel a sustained recovery in Calgary’s housing market,” says Scott.
 
For more detailed information and charts on current market trends for October visit:
 
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Data is supplied by Pillar 9™ MLS® System. Pillar 9™ is the owner of the copyright in its MLS®System. Data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by Pillar 9™.
The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.