Blogs

After listing a house several times and receiving little or no response from prospective buyers most people begin to wonder what the problem is. Some realtors will tell you that selling a home takes time. Indeed it does. If you notice that similar homes in the market are selling and yours is not, there could be a deeper problem.

One of the biggest obstacles of selling real estate in Colorado is the price of the home. If your home is priced to high, it is unlikely that you will receive inquiries. The best way to price your home is by comparing it to similar homes in your area that have recently sold.

Many sellers price their homes by using a dated appraisal combined with an appreciation calculation. This is not the wisest method for pricing your home for two reasons. Your home is not guaranteed to appreciate over time. In fact, some homes depreciate in value. The second reason is that an appraisal even as little as one year ago does not win over current market worth. The best way to price your home is based on today’s market.

A second obstacle that could stand in the way of selling a home is the condition of the home. Buyers are looking to purchase homes that are in top condition. Anything less will likely not receive an offer. It is important to make sure your house is presentable – both inside and outside – before showing it to any prospective buyers. In fact, the outside should be prepared before the home is listed. If a prospect drives by the house and deems the outside not presentable, he or she will not bother with inquiring about the inside of the house.

Price and condition are two of the biggest obstacles for home selling. If your home is not selling, these are the first to attributes you should check.

Thousands of Houstonians jog in Memorial Park every day. Many others flock into this green oasis in the midst of the city?s concrete to play ball, picnic or just to enjoy nature. But, years ago soldiers drilled where people now run.

Memorial park was originally used as a farmland. Its first owner, A.C. Reynolds, established a saw mill and a grist mill there in 1831. Ownership of the land changed many times and by 1883 it was apparently abandoned and it remained a densely forested land. The calm was shattered in 1917 when the United Stated entered World War I. The city of Houston successfully lobbied to become the training site, and the U.S War Department chose 2,000 acres along Buffalo Bayou as the location of the facility. In less then a month, more than 1,000 buildings were hastily constructed and Camp Logan became home to 20,000 soldiers.

Even though Camp Logan successfully trained these men for combat abroad and continued to serve after the war as a military hospital, the base is often remembered for a bloody riot. On August 23, 1917, a battle broke out between soldiers from an all black regiment, Houston police and some local citizens. After the smoke cleared, 40 people were dead and 19 soldiers were executed after the largest court martial in U.S history. When the war ended, Catherine Mary Emmott conceived the idea of establishing a park in memory of the many soldiers who had fought and died for their country.

In 1924 the City of Houston with a population of 200,000 became the owner of one of the largest urban parks in any metropolitan area in the United States. The original deed specified that the land should always be used for park purposes only or else it would be reverted to the Hogg heirs. Miss Ima Hoggs watched the property for 50 years, during which time there were more then 100 encroachment attempts. Miss Ima and those who followed her, stood firm in their refusals.

Houstonians who enjoy Memorial Park today can thank countless people who have gone before them for this green island of calm in the bustling city.

I’m sure you’ve noticed the papers read “Surrey Booming!” or “Vancouver Market BOOM!” or maybe “Fraser Valley Market Is Red Hot”. Well due to increasing population and decreasing supply of land, real estate prices go up. This is a natural law of the world. Many communities have slow growth or no-growth because they cannot meet rapidly expanding needs for their community. With our government, this is not the case. Our government understands that restrictions on land availability means new development. This causes land value to go up in value in the Fraser Valley housing market. Real Estate is a commodity that the public needs. Other investment commodities are not so reliable because they don’t constitute a public need. Sometimes people will live in the lower mainland and want Vancouver Island as a retreat. Vacation property or places of retirement creates further demand for land. And so the cycle goes. You can see why real estate can be a solid investment for your Canadian dollar’s.

For all the reasons outlined in earlier points, clearly buying a new home in British Columbia has the potential for an attractive return on your investment. Before and after tax. In fact some of the tax advantages of real estate investments include the following

(i) tax free capital gains on your principle residence.

(ii) the “ability” to write off principal residence suite’s rental income against your home expense!

(iii) Writing off home based business income against your home expense.

(iv) Reduction tax rate of 50% of capital gain form your investment in real estate.

(v) Write off deprecation of the building against income.

(vi) Much, Much more! (contact your local realtor for more information)

A prudent Fraser Valley investor can result in a net positive cash flow income to you every month. Not only can the money provide you with additional money in the lower mainland but the fact that you have a positive cash flow is one factor that automatically increases the value of income acquiring real estate.

Review our 10 key investment Strategies

1. Research the market before making any decisions would be a great start! Consider at least three potential investment opportunities.

2. Buy specific types of property’s that are in demand. For example, a single family house with a spare basement suite for revenue is a great solid commodity. A condominium, duplex, triplex or four-plex. Don’t buy an apartment building until you have the experience of several smaller properties.

3. Strive to have a “break even” cash flow. In other words AVOID DEBT! Cover all your expenses from cash flow such as mortgage payments, taxes, property management and strata fee’s. Also make sure insurance, repair are paid.

4. Budget a “what if” plan just incase you have a vacancy for more then 2 months.

5. Ensure that you have competent property management. Either hire a property manager or do it yourself.

6. Keep rents at market maximums and manage expenses to keep at market minimum.

7. Always view and inspect your property before you buy. Verify all financial information and obtain your realtor’s guidance in the Fraser Valley market.

8. Keep a minimum of 3 moths operating expense as a reserve fund for unexpected expenses such as repairs or vacancies.

9. Buy properties within 4 hours driving distance to where you live. That way you can easily monitor your investment. Stay within Richmond, Burnaby, Vancouver, New West, White Rock, Langley, Maple Ridge, Aldergrove, Abbotsford, Mission and Chilliwack. Any further then that (hope and Vancouver island) maybe be too long of a drive for an investment property.

Give yourself a realistic time frame to achieve your investment objectives. Real estate cycles are 5-8 years and sometimes more! Be patient!