Do you Really Need a Realtor When a Buying a Home?

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Vancouver, British Columbia has several residential neighborhoods that are nothing short of ideal when it comes to raising a family. It isn't surprising, then, that many families find it appealing to relocate to this city. This brings up the age-old question: Do you need to hire a Realtor to find the home of your dreams?

You can certainly attempt to buy a home in Metro Vancouver without an agent. Yet some selling agents find that buyers with no representation are perceived as less serious about property acquisition. As such, this might hinder your chances of buying a home.

Hiring a Realtor can help make the home buying process proceed more smoothly since the agent has connections with both sellers as well as lenders. The agent will first ask about your preferences as well as your financial situation to determine your buying power. This will make it easier for them to match you with a lender.

Aside from matching you with lenders and sellers, Realtors can also protect your interests when you are about to close the deal. For instance, if you need a third-party inspection for termites, asbestos, and other faulty structures, Realtors can usually hook you up with reputable service providers. In any case, see to it that you hire a buyer's agent who'll be on your side through it all.

The Advantages of Condo Living

Friday, July 26, 2013

If you lead a hectic urban lifestyle, where you live can determine the amount of stress you can expect on a daily basis. You can choose to live in the suburbs where property costs can be cheaper and where there's more space for your family to enjoy. Yet the distance to your place of work as well as home maintenance costs can soon prove taxing.

These days, a lot of city folks find it more practical to live in condominiums. Some condos are located near city centers, thus minimizing the stress and hassle associated with one's daily commute. For instance, you can get a place that's just a few blocks away from your office so you can simply walk rather than drive a car or take public transit.

If home maintenance tasks are not your cup of tea, then condo living might just be the perfect solution for you. Condo building administrators usually take care of electrical and plumbing repairs, round-the-clock security, and maintenance of common areas (such as gyms, swimming pools, and lobbies). You therefore have less to worry about regarding property upkeep and your family's safety within the premises.

In any case, you might find it easier to acquire your very own condo unit with the help of a certified realtor. Your real estate agent can give you a listing of available properties that suit your budget and preferences, and even facilitate on-site visits.

Real Estate in Vancouver is Doing Fine...for Now

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Things are looking good so far for the Vancouver real estate market, what with the Northern and Western districts experiencing at least 30 percent more gross sales since June (which is way better than the same period last year). That's not all; in fact, demand for luxury real estate is expected to remain consistent. If the market holds up, there won't be a foreseeable downturn in sales anytime soon—excellent news for both buyers and sellers.

That said, it will still take some time before a luxury property gets sold, particularly if the price is unusually too high or if there aren't that many interested buyers. Case in point: one $29.9 million estate in the West Side hasn't been sold since April 2013, despite the fact that a $25 million condo in Fairmont was sold in June. No doubt buyers still demand lower prices, as was the case for one residential property in Whistler that was sold earlier this year after a $5 million price slash.

Still, the Canadian real estate scene is much better than in the United States, which is only expected to turn up better numbers by late 2013. One expert even suggests that the year actually marks a transitional phase from Canada's lackluster real estate performance to one filled with optimism and greater potential. If this is true, then people can expect to see even better things in 2014 and beyond.

Three Essential Items on Your Dream Home Checklist

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Vancouver is the place to go to when you're looking for a new home. With its extensive business district, pristine beaches, and surrounding mountains, this city probably has all you're going to need in this new chapter of your life. To succeed in your search, here are some things you should keep in mind.


While you won't have a problem getting basic services in Vancouver, service providers and other important establishments may not be near. Find a home close to schools, offices, supermarkets, hospitals, etc. The closer you are to these places, the easier your family can adjust to your new surroundings.


Neighbors are part of your everyday life. You may often see what they do, hear what they talk about, and invite them to your home every now and then. As such, be sure choose a peaceful community where you can get along harmoniously with the other households.


You're probably firm in your decision to purchase a home given that you are quite confident that you have the necessary monetary resources and easy access to a home loan. In any case, buy a home that suits your budget so you won't have to deal with financial problems later on. Keep tabs on your expected income to figure out how you can settle your mortgage payments on time.

Relocating to Vancouver: Find Your Dream House

Monday, July 8, 2013

If you're looking for another city to call home in the near future, you might want to consider Vancouver, Canada. Known for its alternative arts scene, diverse population, and rich culture, this British Columbia city is one of the top choices for relocation. While each neighborhood in Vancouver has its own allure and draw, there are a couple of communities that stand out if it is a dream house you’re looking for.

The North Shore is where waterfront luxury homes can be found. Just across the Lions Gate Bridge, this area is divided into West and North Vancouver, and features breathtaking views of the beach and the mountains. If your nest egg is quite substantial and you're willing to spare no expense to get your dream home, the North Shore is the perfect area in which to reside.

The West End, on the other hand, is the place to be if you fancy living in quaint apartment buildings or older-era homes. Residences with a view of the English Bay are available in the area and can be bought at relatively affordable prices.

There are many neighborhoods in Vancouver where you can settle down. To get a great deal on a home, get a real estate agent who can show you around British Columbia and knows the neighborhoods inside out.

Is Buying a Condo the Right Choice for You?

Friday, July 5, 2013

There are plenty of available choices when you are into buying a new home, and one of them is a condominium unit. A condo is almost like an apartment in size, but ownership terms may differ. They are perfect for those who are ready to own a home, but don't like the traditional detached structure.

Condominiums are attractive for those who want a simpler lifestyle and minimal maintenance requirements. Living in a condo can free you from some chores like mowing your lawn, cleaning several rooms plus your garage, and worrying about security when you're out of town.

Searching for the right condo is much like looking for a house. If you have an idea of the layout, size and community you want, seek an established and reputable real estate agent who can bring you to the unit you want. Go over listings for prospective properties, and real estate websites for the realtor who can help you.

If you are thinking of buying a new home for your family or for yourself, condos should definitely be on your list owing to their practicality. Talk to a real estate agent now to discuss your concerns. He'll help you decide if a condo is the right choice for you.

There's Still Hope for Canada's Housing Woes

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

When it comes to expensive houses in Canada, Vancouver seems to consistently make the top cut. Shaughnessy currently has the highest average home price in the country at about C$3 million, while West Vancouver is home to the country's most expensive house, priced at about C$28 million. It is even expected that an average homeowner who wants to buy a house in Vancouver has to pay C$100,000 more than in other places like Toronto.

Arguably, this prestige can also come across as a double-edged sword, since high prices tend to scare away a lot of prospective buyers. In fact, this is exactly what is going on right now with the Canadian housing market, with sales either remaining flat or dropping even lower every month—a trend that is expected to stick around at least until 2015. Stricter mortgage laws that were passed recently seem only to increase home prices in Toronto and elsewhere instead of combating the unprecedented rise of home loans.

However, the future isn't really that bad for real estate in Canada since it is also expected that the increasingly large supply of unsold properties will encourage more people to buy them eventually. This can also happen if interest rates remain low and construction of new houses also slows down, because a growing population will compel families to buy homes. For now, and despite these housing woes, Canada is faring fairly well on the global real estate market compared to other countries like the United States and Chile. 

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