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Archive for February, 2009

Interest Rate Watch – February 27

Sat, 28th February, 2009 - Posted by Sean Kavanagh - (0) Comment

Term Rate
6 Months    5.00%
1 Year        3.90%
2 Years      3.90%
3 Years      4.00%
4 Years      4.09%
5 Years      4.19%
7 Years      5.70%
10 Years    6.05%
Prime        3.00%
Variable     3.80%

If you would like me to send you periodical interest rate updates, please provide me with your email address so I can pass on the latest rate changes, along with any other market information you may be interested in.

It is always best to shop around to find the best interest rate. Let me help save you money!

Buyers and sellers can find everything they need to make the most informed choices on properties in Burlington or Oakville by calling 905-220-9198 or by visiting me at www.seansells.ca.

Sean Kavanagh

Category : Mortgage

Canadian Economy: Not as bad as you may think!

Sun, 22nd February, 2009 - Posted by Sean Kavanagh - (0) Comment

Guess which country, alone in the industrialized world, has not faced a single bank failure, calls for bailouts or government intervention in the financial or mortgage sectors. Yup, it’s Canada. In 2008, the World Economic Forum ranked Canada’s banking system the healthiest in the world. America’s ranked 40th, Britain’s 44th.

Canada has done more than survive this financial crisis. The country is positively thriving in it. Canadian
banks are well capitalized and poised to take advantage of opportunities that American and European banks cannot seize. The Toronto Dominion Bank, for example, was the 15th-largest bank in North America one year ago. Now it is the fifth-largest.

Canada has also been shielded from the worst aspects of this crisis because its housing prices have not fluctuated as wildly as prices in the United States. Home prices are down 25 percent in the United States, but only half as much in Canada.

The Canadian government has been remarkably responsible over the past decade or so. It has had 12 years of budget surpluses, and can now spend money to fuel an economic recovery from a strong position.

The February 2009 article in Newsweek magazine also points to the ‘brain-dead immigration system’ that the U.S. employs that further distances the two countries as we look at rebuilding our damaged economies. Due to the tight immigration and green card distribution policy, large companies have been forced to train foreign nationals to work in Canada. For example, in 2007 Microsoft, frustrated by its inability to hire foreign graduate students in the U.S., decided to open a research centre in Vancouver. This allowed Microsoft to attract the brightest and most talented Chinese and Indian software engineers, train them in American universities, then send them to Canada to work. Not only will Canada benefit from increasing its intellectual capital, it will gain all the income tax revenues from the increased work force.

For more information on buying or selling real estate in Burlington or Oakville, Ontario, if you have questions about current market trends, or mortgage and interest rate information, please visit me again on my website www.seansells.ca or call me at 905-220-9198 and I’d be glad to answer any questions to accommodate all of your real estate needs.

Sean Kavanagh

Category : Market Updates

Staging is the secret to selling your home

Fri, 20th February, 2009 - Posted by Sean Kavanagh - (0) Comment

“Sean was able to list our property, show it to multiple parties, and sell it for what we wanted – in 36 days, over the Christmas holidays, and while we were on our honeymoon!” – Brent Fraser.

The above excerpt was taken from a testimonial of a client that recently benefitted from a professional home staging consultation. If you are thinking of selling your property and want to ensure it gets sold for maximum value, you not only need to hire the most qualified real estate sales representative, you need to have your home staged. With the number of homes currently on the market, your house has to shine brighter than all of your competition. So, as a value added service for all of my clients…..

…..If you list your home with me, your Home Staging is FREE!!!!!!!!!

Home staging is the process of cleaning, de-cluttering and neutralizing a home to help buyers see a home’s full potential. As home sales decline and a record number of houses cram the market, more sellers are turning to home staging to make their properties stand out. Staging is investing time, energy and depersonalizing. Home staging is not, however, massive redecorating and expensive trips to the furniture store.

Consultations with a professional home stager can run up to $500, while the staging itself can cost up to $6,000 depending on the number of rooms that are staged and how many temporary furnishings the stager adds.

However, if you list with me, your home staging is FREE!!!!!!

There are, of course, many parts of home staging sellers can do themselves. The process starts on the outside: clean gutters, edge lawns, groom shrubbery, add a new coat of paint if it’s in the budget. Remove children’s toys, yard art like gnomes and wind chimes, remove the RV from the driveway and stop parking your car on the lawn!

If your house looks bad from the outside, people who drive past won’t even stop to look inside. And with the MLS flooded with inventory, you only have 3 seconds to grab a potential buyer’s interest.

On the inside, start with a good scrub-down of the entire house. Leave no surface untouched, which includes wiping fingerprints off windows and doors, removing black scuff marks from the walls and tackling unwanted odours.  Relegate pets to the outdoors and, during an open house, send them to the puppy hotel.
Tile grout should be bleached, cracks caulked and any mould or stains removed. Replace old hand soap with bottled liquid soap and swap out frayed towels with new ones. Paint over bold colours with inoffensive neutral ones.

Now it is time to de-clutter! Remove framed photographs, knick-knack collections, extra throw blankets and pillows, and stacks of magazines and books. In the kitchen, store toasters, coffee makers and other small appliances in the cabinets to showcase your countertops.

Less is always more when it comes to staging. Too much furniture and too many rugs can shrink a space and hinder traffic flow. The goal is to get potential buyers to feel comfortable when they enter a room. They want to imagine themselves living in the home, not just visiting someone else’s home.

Most real estate agents are convinced that staging is worth the hassle and you can stage to meet all budgets. But remember, if you list with me, your home staging is FREE!!!!!

If you have any questions about current market conditions, mortgage rates, want a free market evaluation done on your home, or if you just want to find out about how to take advantage of my free home staging service, please call me at 905-220-9198 or send me an email at sean.kavanagh@century21.ca. Also, please visit my comprehensive real estate resource centre at www.seansells.ca.

Sean Kavanagh

Category : Home Staging / Sellers

Market Watch – February

Tue, 17th February, 2009 - Posted by Sean Kavanagh - (0) Comment

Market Watch

2,670 Resale Housing Transactions in January

Toronto Real Estate Board Members reported 2,670 sales in January from the 5,075 sales reported in the first month of 2008. Of these, 1,106 transactions took place in the City of Toronto compared to 2,128 in January 2008. In the surrounding “905″ area, 1,564 sales were recorded, from 2,947 last year.

The GTA housing market has not been immune to the economic slowdown in Canada. Some potential home buyers were less-certain about their positioning in the economy over the past year. Until the economy rebounds, and along with it consumer confidence, the number of existing home sales will be more moderate in comparison to the average over the last ten years.

Home prices also moderated in January. The average MLS selling price dipped to $343,632. The average price was $364,415 in the City of Toronto, from $404,202 in 2008. In the surrounding regions (“905″ area code), the average price was $328,935 from $352,965 last year. Buyers have experienced more choice in the existing home marketplace. Lower selling prices have resulted.

It should be noted that the GTA housing market has followed the broader economic slowdown, but was not a cause of the downturn. Home prices remained affordable throughout the new millennium. The average family can still qualify for a mortgage on the average priced home. This remains the case today. Given that we are not facing an early-1990s-style affordability crisis, the rebound in the housing market will likely be quick once economic recovery takes hold.

Median Price
The median price in January was $303,000 from the $319,000 recorded during January of 2008.

If you have any other questions about buying or selling real estate, please call me at 905-220-9198 or check out my website at www.seansells.ca.  There you will find loads of information on current interest rates, market conditions, featured listings and information to assist buyers and sellers with all of their real estate needs.

Sean Kavanagh

Category : Market Updates

Interest Rate Watch – February

Tue, 17th February, 2009 - Posted by Sean Kavanagh - (0) Comment

Interest Rate Watch as of Friday, February 14, 2009

Term Rate

6 Months    5.20%
1 Year        3.89%
2 Years      3.99%
3 Years      3.75%
4 Years      4.19%
5 Years      4.19%
7 Years      5.90%
10 Years    6.35%
Prime        3.00%

If you would like me to send you periodical interest rate updates, please provide me with your email address so I can pass on the latest rate changes, along with any other market information that may satisfy your real estate needs.

It is always best to shop around to find the best interest rate. Let me help save you money!

Please be sure to check out my website at www.seansells.ca to view all my featured listings and to browse all of my other real estate blog posts.

Sean Kavanagh

Category : Mortgage

Saturday Open House for this Burlington Beauty!

Thu, 5th February, 2009 - Posted by Sean Kavanagh - (0) Comment

Large Family Wanted!

Open house at 3086 Parkgate Crescent on Saturday February 7th between 2:00pm and 4:00pm.

Super Spacious Family Home on a Quiet Burlington Crescent! Many Recent Updates including: Windows, Roof, Exterior Doors, Garage Door, Fence, Refinished Floors- Painted in Neutral Tones. Updated Main Floor Bath with Jacuzzi Tub- Newer Doors, Soffits, Fascia, Electrical panel with Inspection Certificate. Open concept Living Room/ Dining Room, Eat in Kitchen with Sliders to Fully Fenced Pool sized Yard, Deck & Patio. Bedroom sizes you have to see to believe. A Master Bedroom with Walk in Closet and Ensuite Privilege. ALL Appliances Included. Close to Schools, All Major Highways and Amenities. In law suite potential. FLEXIBLE CLOSING AVAILABLE!

Bring all offers! Come see it before it sells. With the recent price drop, it’s a steal at $324,900!

Own this Burlington Beauty for payments as low as $673.02

For more information on this great property, click here.

Sean Kavanagh

Category : Open Houses

Sunday Open House – Great Family Home!

Thu, 5th February, 2009 - Posted by Sean Kavanagh - (0) Comment

Bring the Kids to this 3+1 bedroom home!

Open house at 676 Catalina Crescent on Sunday February 8th between 2:00pm and 4:00pm.

Seller Wants an Offer!!! Just Reduced by $20,000!!! Huge 4 Level Split with Self Contained Apartment/ Inlaw Suite with Completely Separate Entrance. Perfect for Investment or Extended Family. Parking for 4 Cars. Open Concept Livingroom/Diningroom with Walkout to Stunning
Landscaped Gardens, & Complete Privacy. Updated Kitchen with Hardwood Floors. Greenhouse Window & Updated Main Bath. 3 + 1 Bedrooms. Newer roof and windows. Family room with Fireplace & Above Grade Window. Freshly painted. Too Much to List! Call for a private viewing
today!!!

Bring all offers! Come see it before it sells. With the recent price drop, it’s a steal at $319,900!

Own this Burlington Beauty for payments as low as $662.66

For more information on similar properties, click here.

Category : Open Houses

Renovate and your government will pay!

Tue, 3rd February, 2009 - Posted by Sean Kavanagh - (0) Comment

If you’re thinking about that refurbished kitchen, or putting in an extra bathroom or a new deck, now is the time to act, because your friends in Ottawa want to help with the bills!

The recent federal budget offered a new renovation tax credit of up to $1,350 toward a wide variety of home improvements, from a new roof to a new lawn.

The one-year program, which is forecast to cost the federal government up to $3 billion, is not only designed to stimulate job-creation in the construction industry, but also to inject life into consumer spending.

It will also help keep skilled workers on the job at a time when home building starts are sagging. As the construction sector employs a lot of people, this new program can help keep those workers on site.

However, this program extends far beyond putting pay checks in the hands of construction workers. It covers a variety of projects that will help the consumer who has been waiting for a time when it was affordable to renovate their home, cottages or condos. In addition to major work such as rebuilding a kitchen or adding a bath, or finishing a basement, it also covers a lot of smaller upgrades. New flooring or rugs, a new furnace or water heater, a refinished driveway, sod for the lawn, interior and exterior painting are all covered under this new project.

The program offers a tax credit of up to 15 per cent of renovation costs over $1,000, up to a maximum of $10,000 in renovation costs. The maximum benefit is thus 15 per cent of $9,000 or $1,350. That comes right off taxes owing, but if it exceeds the total tax bill, there’s no refund.

If you were waiting for the catch, it comes with the receipt that must be produced for the renovations to ensure the work was done by someone who charges tax. Aimed at eliminating ‘cash-only, no-tax’ transactions.

It covers work contracted for or materials purchased between now and Feb. 1 next year. The program is only scheduled for one year, so you will have to start planning now. It doesn’t cover things such as new furniture, household electronics or maintenance contracts for snow removal, pool cleaning and the like.

Householders who make energy-saving home improvements will be able to essentially double-dip because they are eligible for grants under the ecoENERGY retrofit program as well as the new tax credit.

The government estimates that about 4.6 million homes are eligible for the new program.

For more information on buying or selling real estate in Burlington or Oakville, Ontario, if you have questions about current market trends, or mortgage and interest rate information, please visit me again on my website www.seansells.ca or call me at 905-220-9198 and I’d be glad to answer any questions to accommodate all of your real estate needs.

Category : Home Improvements / Market Updates
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