LRT back to Eastgate Square

If you live east of the Queenston Traffic circle in Hamilton this is great news for you. If you are a transit rider its great news and if you are a home owner in the area, its fabulous news!

The east end of Hamilton has seen a bump in real estate values out performing many areas in the Hamilton area along with the high performing core.

This is primarily due to the new GO station coming to Centennial Parkway near the QEW.  Now that the proposed LRT is to extend to Eastgate Mall again, I feel certain we will see another “bump” in prices in the east end.

Taken from From Hamilton For Transit:

Environment Hamilton and Hamilton 4 Transit welcome Eastgate LRT announcement

Lynda Lukasic from Environment Hamilton and Hamilton 4 Transit, welcomes the news that LRT will be approved to go to Eastgate sooner than originally expected:

“As a resident of the area, I can attest to the community support for LRT to come to Eastgate. This area has one of the largest concentration of transit users in Hamilton, and needs high quality transit options. Eastgate is also a major commercial destination in Hamilton and better transit links will improve the neighbourhood’s economy while protecting its environment. LRT will help to transform Eastgate area into a more walkable neighbourhood, which will improve health and quality of life for all residents.”

The reaction to the extension back to Eastgate is being well received and something I believe is a great move forward.  Being a natural transit hub should actually be more cost effective than creating a hub at the traffic circle.

lrt map

 

Excerpt  article 2011, From Don Campbell, R.E.I.N  Real Estate Investment Network

The City of Hamilton hopes to turn to light rail technology to curb traffic congestion. The announcement of five proposed rapid transit lines in Hamilton lead the REIN team to undertake a research report on the impacted neighbourhoods.

REIN’s detailed research has found that there are three “Tiers of Impact” that will occur in the Hamilton region:

First Tier: Neighbourhoods located near the on and off ramps to the Red Hill Valley Parkway. These include: McQuestern East and West, Barton, Nashdale, Kentley, Glenview East, Corman, Red Hill, King’s Forest and Albion Falls. 

Second Tier: Includes areas that will also be positively impacted by the easier access and traffic flow created by the Highway 8 link to the Red Hill Valley Parkway. This will allow commuters from as far away as Toronto and Oakville to cut key minutes off their drive.

Third Tier: Areas that are within 800 meters of the proposed LRT and GO train stations in Hamilton. These areas will move up to second tier once the official announcements are made as to exact locations, then eventually move to first tier once the actual construction begins. Communities impacted by future LRT lines include: Ainslie Wood, Cootes Paradise, Westdale South, Beasley, Corktown, Kentley, Greenford, Green Acres Park, North Glanford, Ryckmans, Mewburn, Sheldon, Kennedy East, Allison, Greeningdon, Balfour, Bonnington, Yeoville, Rolston, Buchanan, Mohawk, Southam, Centremount, Durand, Corktown, Beasley, Central Hamilton, North End, Ancaster, Mohawk Meadows, Bruleville, Burkholme, northern Crerar, northern Rushdale, Hill Park, Lawfield, Crown Point, northern Homeside, Ancaster, Leckie Park, the Elfrida growth area, Corman, Riverdale, and Winona.

When the LRT stations are completed, communities within an 800-metre radius of these transportation improvements can anticipate a 10%–20% increase in their property values. The largest effect will be felt in older and more established neighbourhoods.

– See more at: http://www.reincanada.com/aboutus/media-news/press-releases/hamiltons-transportation-transformation/#sthash.JMSGkkKc.dpuf

If you’d like to discuss how your home will be impacted in value by the proposed LRT, call or text me at 905-537-6005.

If you would like to discuss the benefits of purchasing a home in this area, contact me.

 

 

 

 

What Should I Offer In a Bidding War?

 This is the question of the day in Southern Ontario.
What to offer when you are in competition for a property you really want.  questions answered image
REALTORS(r) sometimes have formulas that vary from market to market. For example,  X amount for every offer in the competition or a certain percentage for every offer in the mix.
It’s something but its not full proof by any means.  In a more normal balanced market we can look at the comparable properties that have recently sold but even that is not full proof in this type of market.
The lack of balance in the supply and demand is throwing all logic out the window.  The bidding war seems to be more impacted by where the other Buyers are coming from ( for example from a higher priced market so everything looks like a bargin).  Also on how many times the other Buyers have lost in competition.  Some get so fed up that they go all in on one they really want and often pay tens of thousands of dollars more than the next best bid.  All information you can not get beforehand.
My best advice is to put in an offer at a price that if you lose and are told it was close you will say “that’s okay, that’s what I was willing to pay” or if you win you don’t say, “oh no, I over paid”.  That is your sweet spot and one only you can determine.
If I figure out the formula, I’ll let you know.                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wish I had a crystal ball! 
crystal_ball

When you only call the Listing Agent to view properties

There are some Buyers out there who will say they only call the listing agents to view properties they have found themselves online or by driving around looking for signs.  This makes no sense to me.  Real Estate services are the only services I can think of where the buyer gets “free” professional services and the someone else pays for them.  The fiduciary duties are owed to the buyer if he/she enters into a Buyer Representation Agreement (BRA) with an agent.  The agency relationship is with the Brokerage.  Without the Agency Agreement you are a CUSTOMER not a CLIENT.

How do you create this agency relationship you might be wondering.  What is the consideration you owe? You owe loyalty.  You pay nothing as long as you are not in breach of your agreement with the Brokerage.

There are three parameters to the agreement.

Time – length of the contract

Geography – the areas it includes

Type – What does it include? Residential, commercial etc.

Some Buyers believe they will get a better chance at “winning” the property in bidding war if they write an offer with the Listing agent, but that is very dollarsignrarely the case in spite of some of the talk out there.  The duty of the Listing Brokerage is to expose the property to the market and try to get the most favourable agreement for the Seller based on their wants and needs.buyer seller image

We can have a Multiple Representation situation where the Sellers REALTOR(r) represents both parties and that is disclosed to both the Seller and the Buyer.

There are specific guidelines we must follow in these cases.  Some Buyers think that the listing agent can then reduce their commission since they are getting “both ends” and make their offer more attractive.  Yes, that can be done but it must be disclosed to all other REALTORS(r) bringing an offer and in turn their Buyers.

The rules are in place to keep things fair and equitable.  night skyline

The best thing you can do is find a REALTOR(r) you connect with and trust and work as a team to find a home.  It is extremely difficult for us out there right now when dealing with a Buyer. It is almost impossible for a Buyer on their own.

 

Good luck and don’t get discouraged.  Just always take your best shot!

 

 

 

 

 

Hamilton is the Coolest!

“We’ve tipped” says successful award winning developer in Hamilton, Steve Kulakowsky from the Core Urban Inc. We are past the tipping point says Steve. I would agree.  It’s no longer “change is coming” or “we have loads of potential”. It is here!

Watch the tour video here.

Increase in house prices averaging 10% for 2015, driven primarily by the influx of “out of towners” loving the affordability. The in-filling and intercity development and promises of better public transit.  Initiatives like Sobi bike sharing. The increase in concepts like work space sharing in amazing spaces like The Cotton Factory. Offering event space rental as well.

The word is out and Hamilton is The Coolest!  Watch more  Hamilton video’s here.

Want to know more about opportunities in #Hamilton.  Contact me and get in on the action in #HamOnt.  Call or text 905-537-6005

 

 

 

I Want To Buy a Home in the Hamilton area. Where Do I Begin?

You begin with financing. I work with a team of trusted professionals to assist and support my clients. So if you are in the Hamilton area, you should start with a call to me or your favourite REALTOR® who can provide you with the proper contacts. If you are not in the area, I have made many great Real Estate contacts outside of the GHA that I can recommend to you.

It is rather easy and efficient when you have guidance. I believe in being involved from A to Z . I can provide mortgage specialists, inspectors, lawyers and other contractors you may need.  I provide a professional photographer if you are selling a home and as well as my staging advice, and a professional if needed.

Once you’ve received the information from a mortgage person, the process can begin.  I would also provide a thorough evaluation on any existing owned home. Then set up a search of the entire MLS of properties that meet your needs and price range.  You would give me feedback on the properties sent. This is vital to get us on the same page. For me to get “inside your head” and figure out your “must have’s” and your ” I want’s”.

Then comes the Education Day home viewings. We aren’t necessarily expecting to find “the” house this visit especially since many of the properties will have been on the market for a while. So not necessarily the cream of the crop. A great day to get the conversation going. A great way to bring out important questions and to focus on what you are looking for.

Moving forward I am “on it” daily until that perfect home for you does come along. I’ll save the information on the offer process and after the offer for another time.

This is a method that has worked well for me and my clients. I find this step by step process can be completed for first time buyers often within 2 weeks depending on your availability. Longer if you have a home to sell of course. My goal is to save you time and aggravation while finding your perfect home at the best price and educating you on all aspects.

Trust a professional and take your first step by contacting me and let me guide you throughrealtors_know_real_estate_ this process of finding your dream home!

Expect More, Get More!

www.HamiltonRealEstateSales.com

The Ladies of Royal Lepage State Realty, Brokerage present….

An Information Seminar Geared to Mature Adults coming this Fall!
Keep watching for details – date and time
It will be at Sackville Recreation Centre on the Hamilton Mountain.

Loads of great information including how to stay in your home long term.
Right Sizing  your home.
What services are out there for you and so much more!

SRES  Seniors Real Estate Specialist

Home Buyers Beware | Watch Out For Kitec Plumbing

I always say, “hire a professional” and it is very important when hiring a home inspector to check out your potential new home.

I hadn’t heard of Kitec Plumbing a couple of years ago until a trusted home inspector found it in a home that my Buyer Clients were trying to purchase in Burlington.  It was a gorgeous, nine year old town-home in great condition.

kitec plumbing
copied from kitecsettlement.com website. Typically orange and/or blue.

What a heart-breaker when the home inspector told us that Kitec Plumbing was found and that it has a high failure rate and was the subject of a class action law-suit.  

My clients were still interested in the property but could not live with the lack of peace of mind that this plumbing would bring. Visions of arriving home to a flood was more than anyone should be expected to endure. Now that the Seller knew about the issue, there was an obligation to disclose. This requirement varies by province so speak to your trusted Real Estate professional if you are selling a property which has Kitec Plumbing.

We had an estimate done to totally replace the plumbing and repair any wall damage.  Basically fix it and make it look like nothing was touched.  We were able to negotiate the price of this repair from the cost of the property and my clients were very happy.

It is vital that you have professionals protecting you and your largest investment.

The moral of the story is “always use a professional”  and “make sure you have a great home inspector”.

The other lesson in this is don’t give up on a property you love because of a defect.  Let your Realtor® work to help to make your dreams come true.

Contact me for more information and visit my website www.HamiltonRealEstateSales.com

Wondering If You Are Over Paying For Your Home in Hamilton, Ontario?

Hamilton’s Real Estate market is healthy and strong and on a huge upturn, just trying to catch up you might say. I see it increasing at least over the next few years.  Having said that, I don’t have a crystal ball…..gosh I wish I did.  There are always unforeseen things that impact our local markets.  Global events, mortgage rule changes, economic events, local events to mention a few.

Let’s talk about spikes.dollarsign

Even in the rising graph there can be spikes.

As a Buyer, I caution you to be careful in a spike.  These can be influenced by the time of year but lately it seems to be more about supply and demand.  Of course the supply and demand issue is partially influenced by time of year.  Lately in Hamilton we have had a shortage of homes to sell to an extreme and I believe we have been in one of those spikes.  Depending on your urgency to buy you may want to adjust your timeline even if just by a few weeks.  Timing is everything.  However, be careful not to wait to long or you can see the prices rise before your very eyes.

If you are a Seller, waiting too long could mean lost dollars if you end up in the fray with other Sellers putting their homes on the market. This could negatively impact the supply and demand from your perspective.  Waiting to get the landscaping done might be a costly decision. Timing IS everything.

Interesting to go back and read this article in The Hamilton Spectator from 2011.  The word definitely has gotten out. I believe Hamilton still has some catching up to do and is thriving and growing. DowntownHamilton

Hamilton is a pretty safe investment and in fact a very smart one in my opinion.

Ask your Hamilton area Real Estate professional for advice on Real Estate decisions in Hamilton.  There are many factors that should be considered as you make decisions regarding your biggest or one of your biggest assets or largest purchases of your life.

Contact me for more information at 905-574-4600, toll free 1-877-574-4601 or direct 905-537-6005.

Expect More, Get More!

What’s the difference between a FIXTURE and a CHATTEL?

When you are purchasing a home it would seem that “what is the difference between a fixture and a chattel?” should be an easy answer.  Well not always, sometimes there is confusion or the wrong expectations.

First lets differentiate the meaning and use.  A fixture is “a-fixed” to the house and is deemed to stay with the house unless it is excluded from the Agreement of Purchase and Sale.  A chattel is not “a-fixed” to the home and goes unless it is included in the Agreement of Purchase and Sale.

Some items are clear and sometimes we put them into the offer anyways for clarity and to make sure everyone understand what stays and what goes.

A prime example of something causing confusion in the last few years is bathroom mirrors.  It used to be clear that the “medicine cabinet” would stay.  Now, with more decorative framed mirrors that may just be hung on a nail like a picture, it’s not so clear.  The Buyer has an expectation that they will have a mirror in their bathroom on closing.  The Seller says, I paid a lot for that and it’s not “fixed” therefore not a fixture. For clarity I always included “any bathroom mirrors” in the agreements I prepare.Framed Mirror

The built-in dishwasher is “a-fixed” by plumbing but since it is an appliance most Realtors® would include it in the “Chattels” section to ensure clarity.  Decorative curtain rod could be just laying on hardware.  So does that mean the rod can go and the hardware bolted to the wall must stay?  What about wall shelves that are held on a screw much like a painting can be?  What about the bookcase that has been secured to the wall to prevent tipping?  traditional-bookcases

Not always so clear is it?

If you’re not sure, it’s best to include or exclude in the appropriate areas to make certain everyone has the same expectation.

Helping you through the process.

Expect More, Get More!

Visit http://www.HamiltonRealEstateSales.com for more Real Estate information.

What’s An ELF? Not Santa’s Helper in the Real Estate World

Clients often ask me, “what’s elf’s?”  Well in the Real Estate world it is not Santa’s little helper but an acronym for Electrical Light Fixture.  Unfortunately, there is a lot of information to give and a limited number of characters allowed. We need room for those descriptive words to paint a picture for you, the buying public.

Here are a few more to help clarify.light

RSA – Room sizes approximate
Reno’d – Renovated
SPIS – Seller Property Information Statement (this requires a whole blog on its own, ask me about it)
F/P – Fireplace
B/I – Built-in
pc – piece as in bathrooms
SS – Stainless Steelchandelier
W/ – With
Sep – Separate
cvac – Central vacuum
TLC – Tender Loving Care
Base – Basement
Prof – Professionally
Hrdwd – Hardwood
GDO – Garage door opener

Let me help you interpret the jargon.  There is a lot said in the remarks of a listing by what is not said and the choice of words used.  Maybe my next blog should be on how to interpret what is not said in a listing remarks section.  Stay tuned.

Contact me with any questions you have or for any assistance with your Real Estate needs.

EXPECT MORE, GET MORE!