KITCHENER – WATERLOO CONDOS & LOFTS FOR SALE

Posts tagged “mortgage

Kitchener Waterloo Housing Market Has Another Record Breaking Month in November

The trend continues here in the Kitchener Waterloo housing market as well as many other urban centers in Ontario. It was another record breaking month for homes sales in the region mostly due to the lack of inventory.

Home sales through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System)  totaled 535 last month, an increase of 27.1 percent compared to November of 2015, marking another record breaking month for residential properties sold. November’s sales included 352 single detached homes (up 34.4 percent compared to November 2015) and 118 condominium type units (down 22.9%) which include any property regardless of style (i.e. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc.). Sales also included 32 semi-detached homes (up 45.5 percent) and 28 freehold townhouses (down 20 percent).

Record breaking sales are also being tallied on a year-to-date basis with 6,352 residential transactions compared to 5,341 during the same period in 2015, representing an increase of 18.9 percent. “Year-to-Date Sales to the end of November have now exceeded any previous end-of-year totals on record.

In 2007, sales to the end of the year exceeded 6,000 units for the first time, and haven’t hit that high-water mark again, until now, an entire month earlier. Inventory levels on the other hand, remain stubbornly low. In their October release, the Canadian Real Estate Association stated that, “the tight balance between housing supply and demand in Ontario’s Greater Golden Horseshoe region is without precedent (including the GTA, Hamilton-Burlington, Oakville-Milton, Guelph, Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, Brantford, the Niagara Region, Barrie and nearby cottage country).” As of the end of November, the KWAR’ MLS® System only had 565 active residential listings on the market, down 23.1 percent compared to the previous month, and 60.8 percent below the same period last year.

The average price of all residential properties sold in November was $411,602 a 15.5 percent increase over 2015. Detached homes sold for an average price of $473,104, an increase of 13.9 percent compared to November 2015. During this same period, the average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $209,360, a decrease of 8 percent. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $310,151 (up 14.8 percent) and $330,534 (up 27.7 percent) respectively.

With a notable shortage of inventory, many properties are selling above list price and  this is because you have many buyers competing for fewer properties, and this is pushing up the average price. The median price of all residential properties sold in November increased 18 percent to $377,500, and the median price of a detached home during the same period increased 16.4 percent to $425,000.

In my opinion those are some staggering numbers and there is no sign of it slowing down in the near future.

If you have any questions on the information or are thinking of buying or selling your home now or in the spring please give me a call and we can sit down and discuss the best options and strategies for you and your family.

Have a wonderful December and Holiday Season!

Kevin


New Mortgage Rules for Canadians has started.

On October 17th, the federal government set up new guidelines for qualifying for a mortgage here in Canada. The federal government says it’s responding to concerns that sharp increases in housing prices in Toronto, Vancouver and elsewhere could increase defaults in the future, should historically low interest rates finally start to climb.

One of the key changes is that homeowners  will be subject to a mortgage rate stress test beginning Oct. 17. It does not matter what size of down payment they have. Before now, those with less than a 20 per cent down payment were required to pass a stress test and have mortgage insurance backed by the federal government through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

The test measures whether the buyer could still afford to make payments if mortgage rates rose to the Bank of Canada’s posted five-year fixed mortgage rate.

That rate is usually significantly higher than what a buyer can negotiate with banks or other lenders. For instance, TD has a five-year fixed rate mortgage at 2.59 per cent, while the Bank of Canada’s rate is 4.64 per cent.

The stress test also sets a ceiling of no more than 39 per cent of household income being necessary to cover home-carrying costs such as mortgage payments, heat and taxes.

It has been said that Regulators are under intense pressure to do something because home prices are climbing fast and may be over-valued in some markets. They want to avoid any kind of catastrophe on their watch..

So is this a good thing for Canadian housing?  Many markets outside of the larger centers are also experiencing a sharp increase in house prices. Here in Kitchener Waterloo, the demand for medium priced homes is literally a bidding war with many homes selling for far more than i think they should be. That being said, prices are a reflection of supply and demand so that current pricing is a direct result of many more buyers than sellers.

The new rules also mean that, beginning this tax year, all home sales must be reported to the Canada Revenue Agency. The gains from sales of primary residences will remain tax-free, but the government is aiming to block foreign buyers from purchasing and flipping homes while falsely claiming the primary residence exemption from capital gains tax.

It remains to be seen whether these steps will tighten the current market, expand or collapse it. My only advice is that if you are thinking of selling your home this fall that you take advantage of the extremely low inventory levels that we have in Waterloo region.

Give me a call and we can grab a coffee and discuss the best solution for you and your family. You can reach me at 519-497-4646 or email to baker_kevin@rogers.com

Have a great day

Kevin


The Hot Real Estate Market Continues in Kitchener Waterloo with No Signs of Cooling.

The trend continues here in Kitchener Waterloo with no signs of cooling. The demand for homes is Hot Hot Hot.

A total of 540 residential properties changed hands in Kitchener Waterloo and area though the MLS® System.  This represents a 29.2 percent increase in sales compared to September of 2015, and is a new record high for the month.

On a year-to-date basis 5,241 residential units have sold compared to 4,456 during the same period in 2015, an increase of 17.6 percent. This is the first time sales have exceed the 5000 unit mark at the end of the third quarter. The demand is strong but the supply of homes still continues to lag well behind. Residential listing inventory  totaled 815, a decline of 51 percent compared to September 2015.

Showing the most traction, were the sales of condominium type units, which include any property regardless of style (i.e. semis, town homes, apartment, detached etc.), increasing 80.6 percent to 130 transactions in September relative to the same month a year ago.

Meanwhile, 333 single detached homes sold last month, an increase of 19.8 percent, compared to last year. September’s sales also included 31 Semi-detached homes (down 18.4 percent) and 33 freehold townhouses (up 22.2 percent).

The average price of all residential properties sold year-to-date was $380,692, a 9.7 percent increase over 2015. The average price of a detached home to the end of the third quarter was $443,554, an 11.8 percent increase over 2015. During this same period, the average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $231,187, an increase of 4.5 percent. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $281,709 (up 8.3 percent) and $293,167 (up 8.5 percent) respectively.

The median price of all residential properties sold year-to-date increased 9.9 percent to $350,000, and the median price of a detached home during the same period increased 10.9 percent to $400,500. Like many other markets in Ontario, it continues to be a sellers’ market here in Waterloo region. Due to the outweighing demand over supply, its putting upward pressure on prices.

With the new changes by the federal government, introducing the mortgage rate “stress test” on all new insured mortgages, could delay home purchases for some first time home buyers, as they assess what they can afford, and possibly save for a bigger down payment.

I don’t believe that these changes will impact our area to a large degree, the very fact that the government is taking steps could cause a slight cooling of the market.

If you have any questions or are thinking of buying or selling this fall please give me a call and we can discuss some strategies that would work best for you.

Have a great Thanksgiving!

Kevin


Hot Home and Condo Sales Continue in Kitchener Waterloo

Hi there and hope you had a fantastic summer!

The housing market here in Kitchener Waterloo is as hot as the weather has been this past summer!  There were a total of 598 home sales in KitchenerWaterloo and area though the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) in August. This represents a 26.4% increase in sales compared to August of 2015. It also ranks as the most active August on record and 37.6% above the 5-year average for the month. That is simply amazing.

Year-to-date sales also climbed to new heights with 4,703 residential sales so far in 2016. Again, this is the highest on record for this period and 23.4% above the 5-year average.

We are still experiencing a lower than normal listing number with active listings almost half of what they were last year at this time. Active listings through the  MLS® System to the end of August sat at 863, which is 46.6% lower compared to same period last year’s 1,616 homes that were on the market. That means we are still experiencing a very tight market in terms of availability of homes which continues to push up home prices in the region.

August’s sales included 353 single detached homes (up 19.7% compared to August 2015) and 151 condominium type units (up 36.0%) which include any property regardless of style (ie. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc). Sales also included 40 Semi-detached homes (up 14.3%) and 49 freehold townhouses (up 69.0%).

The average sale price of all residential sales in August increased 15.2% to $402,000 compared to August 2015.  Its clear that as a result of the strong residential activity  that buyers remain confident about home values here in the region.

Single detached style homes sold for an average price of $487,050 an increase of 20.9% compared to last year. The average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $233,302, an increase of 7.9%. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $298,148 (up 10.2%) and $299,353 (up 5.5%) respectively.

Overall. the market is extremely competitive and if you are thinking of selling your home now is a great time to take advantage of the strong home prices. If you have any questions or would like to get together for a coffee and discuss how we can help with your housing needs please give me a call or text  at 519-497-4646. You can also email me at kevinbaker@kwhometeam.ca


Waterloo Region Posts Record Number of Home Sales in First Half of 2016

 

It is another fantastic month for Real Estate here in the Waterloo Region.  The Region had another record setting month with 740 properties sold in Kitchener-Waterloo and area in the month of June. This represents a 13.1% increase compared to the June of 2015, and ranks as the most active June on record. Honestly in my 15 years as a Realtor I have not seen a market like this one.

During the first half of 2016, there were 3,519 home sales, 18.0% above last year’s total for the same period and 22.8% above the 5-year year-to-date average. That would make the highest number of home sales we have ever recorded in the first half of the year.

On a monthly basis, home sales were 29.7% above the 5-year average for the month of June. As sales continue their upward trend, active residential listings continue to remain depressed in comparison to the same time last year. Currently, the number of active residential listings on the KWAR’s MLS® System to the end of June sat at 1,199, which is 33.9% lower compared to same period last year. This translates to 51.4% fewer available listings on the market today than the same time last year. That means the market needs more sellers to keep up with the high demand of buyers that are looking in the area.  With some of the prices that homes have been selling for, now is a great time to get your home up on the market.

June’s sales included 485 single detached homes (up 13.6%) and 145 condominium type units (up 2.1%) which include any property regardless of style (ie. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc). Sales also included 46 Semi-detached homes (up 9.5%) and 54 freehold townhouses (up 42.1%).

The average sale price of all residential sales in June increased 11.2% to $390,144 compared to June 2015. With fewer listings on the market combined with an increased interest in people wanting to live in the Region, we’re seeing upward pressure on home prices.

Single detached style homes sold for an average price of $451,289 an increase of 10.7% compared to last year. The average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $232,999, an increase of 8.0%. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $277,672 (up 14.5%) and $296,572 (up 10.6%) respectively.

If you have been tossing around the idea of selling your home, give me a call and we can sit down and look at the best options for you and your family.

Have a great July!

Kevin


Sales Hit All Time High in May in KItchener, Waterloo and Cambridge

All I have to say is WOW!!!!  What an incredible month for the Kitchener Waterloo and Cambridge Real Estate Markets. The market is on fire with many homes selling over list price in multiple offer situations.  The buyers seemed to be lined up out the door if you have a property under the 430k mark in certain neighborhoods of town.

Here are some of the stats from the past month.  There were 752 properties sold in KW and area which represents a 19.6% increase compared to May of 2015, and a 27.7% increase compared to the 5-year average for the month of May.

This is the first time since 2007 that residential sales in May exceeded seven hundred units. Year-to-date sales for 2016 also hit an all-time high with 2,776 homes sold in the first five months of the year, 19.2% above last year’s total for the same period and 21.0% above the 5-year average.

Active listings however are down in comparison from last year. Currently, the number of active residential listings on the KWAR’s MLS® System to the end of May is at 1,283 which are 26.1% lower compared to same period last year. This translates to 35.2% fewer available listings on the market today than the same time last year.

So what does that mean?  If you are thinking of selling your home now is a great time to do it. Unfortunately you may also wish to buy and that could prove challenging with the lower than usual inventory buyers often find themselves competing with other buyers, for the same property.

With steady interest rates expected into the later part of 2016 and early 2017,  and steady employment growth, the region is poised to continue the demand for housing and we should see balanced market conditions return for the foreseeable future in Waterloo Region.

May’s sales included 474 single detached homes (up 15.6%) and 166 condominium type units (up 37.2%) which include any property regardless of style (ie. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc). Sales also included 47 Semi-detached homes (down 11.3%) and 56 freehold townhouses (up 27.3%). The average sale price of all residential sales increased 7.3% to $378,248 compared to May 2015. Single detached style homes sold for an average price of $438,708 an increase of 9.8% compared to last year. The average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $221,073, a decrease of 1.2%. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $277,355 (up 1.1%) and $296,751 (up 10.2%) respectively.

If you have any questions on the stats or are thinking of making a move in the near future, please give me a call and we can sit down, grab a coffee and look at your options.

Have a great week!

Kevin


Record Homes Sales in March here in Waterloo Region

It was another Fantastic Month for Home Sales here in Waterloo Region with 584 properties sold in the Kitchener Waterloo area.

This represents a 16.3% increase compared to the March of 2015, and ranks as the highest March on record since 2010. That is just incredible.

During the first quarter of 2016, there were 1,350 home sales, 23.9% above last year’s total for the same period and 17.8% above the 5-year quarterly average and the highest quarter on record since 2010. On a monthly basis, home sales were 16.6% above the 5-year average for the month of March.  The mild weather has brought the buyers out in droves and the spring market is well underway!

March’s sales included 383 single detached homes (up 11.2 %) and 110 condominium type units (up 26.4%) which include any property regardless of style (ie. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc). Sales also included 38 Semi-detached homes (down 2.6%) and 42 freehold townhouses (up 50.0%).

The average sale price of all residential sales increased 5.8% to $371,733 compared to March 2015. Single detached style homes sold for an average price of $428,495 an increase of 9.2% compared to last year. The average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $211,117, a decrease of 11.9%. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $284,226 (up 9.7%) and $276,562 (up 0.6%) respectively.

Sales activity in the $350,000 – $399,999 range increased significantly in the month of March with 98 homes sold in that range, a 78.2% increase from the same time last year. Yes I said 78.2%!! That is clearly evident with all the multiple offers that we have been involved in over the past month.

Year-to-date residential sales in the $300,000-$399,999 remain most popular with 490 sales to date accounting for 36.3% of all residential sales. Pushing the average sales price up for the month were increased sales in the $500,000 – $749,999 range, which posted a 31.6% increase in units sold, compared to March 2015

All in all, Kitchener Waterloo is still showing that we have a vibrant economy and  home values are continuing to show strength.

If you have any questions on the information above or are interested in buying or selling in the coming months feel free to give me a call at 519-497-4646 or email to kevinbaker@kwhometeam.ca

I am happy to help.

Have a wonderful April!

Kevin


Kitchener Waterloo Home and Condo Sales Take a Leap in February! – Market update

All I have to say is WOW, what a month! The housing market is on fire with multiple offers and low inventory it seems that the spring market has started. Here are some of the highlights from the past month.

Residential sales were up 28.2% compared to the same month last year with 452 homes being sold. That is 18.6 percent above the 5 year average for the month. Those sales included 280 single detached homes which is up 40.7% over last February, 33 semi- detached(down 17.5%), 31 townhomes (up 6.9%) and 103 Condo units (up 25.6%).  That makes this past February the most active February since 2008! With interest rates still holding steady, Waterloo region remains an attractive place to live and invest.

Single detached homes sold for an average price of $419,480 which is an increase of 7.7% compared to last year. The average sale price for a Condo unit was $242,272 up 8.3% while townhomes and semis sold for an average of $328,569 (up 10.0%) and $291,770 ( up 12.0) respectively.

The average sale price of all residential sales through the KWAR’s MLS® System increased 10.3% to $361,889 compared to February 2015 with 42.0% of home sales in February occurring in the $250,000-$350,000 range.  With all the cold temperatures that we experienced last year that helped contribute to a 5-year low in home sales for the month. Things have been quite a bit warmer these past few weeks in comparison, and it goes to show how much of a role weather can play when it comes to buying or selling and kicking off the spring market!

If you are thinking of buying or selling now is a great time to start the process. Give me a call at 519-497-4646 or email to kevinbaker@kwhometeam.ca and I can provide all the information you need to make the right decision.

 

Have a great March!

Kevin


Kitchener Waterloo Home and Condo Sales Finish Strong in 2015! – Market Update

Happy New Year!  I hope you are enjoying the winter weather that has finally arrived.

It was another strong finish for the Residential Real Estate market here in Waterloo Region in 2015.

A total of 5,563 sales were processed through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS®) which was an increase of 4.9% percent compared to sales in 2014 . Unlike 2014, which remained slow almost half the year, 2015 only lagged behind in home sales for the first two months of the year. With relatively normal winter weather and no ice storm or polar vortexes, the spring market did not experience the same delay seen in 2014.

Residential sales finished this year with 293 home sales in December compared 262 the same time last year in Kitchener-Waterloo and area. This equates to an 11.8% increase in the number of sales for the month. This month there were 168 detached homes (down 4.5%), 80 condominiums (up 53.8%),   20 townhomes (up 33.3%) and 23 semi-detached (up 21.0%) sold, with the average price of all homes sold this month coming in at $367,121 (up 8.2%).

Overall It’s been a fantastic year for home sales in the Region, which speaks volumes about the economy, the opportunities and  innovation taking place in Waterloo Region.

Total residential sales in 2015 included 3,576 single detached homes (up 4.9% from 2014), 409 semi-detached (up 4.6%), 398 townhomes (up 2.3%) and 1,180 condominium units (up 5.9%).  The average sale price of all residential sales in 2015 increased 3.9 percent to $348,888 in comparison to 2014. Single detached homes sold for an average price of $400,456 (up 3.5%), semi-detached for $268,400 (up 3.4%), townhomes for $301,005 (up to 4.1%) and condominiums sold for an average of $237,735 (up 7.3%).

Locally,  Waterloo Region remains a strong and stable housing market. The excitement around the area from the ION, the burgeoning tech sector, the rural and urban blend position Waterloo Region as a highly desirable place to live and invest.

If you have any questions regarding the local Real Estate market, thinking of buying or selling this spring or know of someone that is, please let me know. I am always happy to help and provide advice where ever I can.

Have a great week!

Kevin


Kitchener Waterloo November Market Update and NO to the MLTT

Realtors and Home owners here in Waterloo Region and across Ontario have spoken and the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing has heard our outrage.  The Minister confirmed this week that the government will not give the municipalities the ability to charge the Municipal Land Transfer Tax.

This is fantastic news for everyone in the region!!!

Now that this bullet is dodged, here in Waterloo Region it was another good month of home sales with a total of 413 residential properties sold last month compared to 376 in November last year. This number included 254 single detached homes (up 10.0% from last November), 22 semi-detached (down 45%), 33 townhomes (down 15.4%) and 99 condominium units (up 37.5%).

Average prices also increased 8.2% to an average price of $412,581 for single detached homes. Condo’s were up 7.3% with an average of $225,341, while townhomes and semis sold for an average of $313,015 (up 13.8%) and $257,995 (down 1.9%) respectively.  Average sale price of all residential sales through the Kitchener Waterloo MLS system increased to $350,703 up 6.7%

With 2015 drawing to a close shortly we have had another outstanding year for homes sales in Waterloo Region.  CMHC is forecasting steady mortgage rates and stronger employment in the Region for 2016 and that means continued demand for housing.  Comparing our prices here against our neighbors in the GTA, Waterloo Region still remains very affordable.

If you are looking to make a move in the spring and would like to have a better idea of what your home is worth click here now.  Whether buying or selling give me a call and let’s sit down for a coffee and discuss how we can help make the move to a new home a smooth one for you and your family. I can be reached at 519-497-4646 or email to kevinbaker@kwhometeam.ca

Have a Wonderful Holiday Season with your family!

Kevin


Kitchener Waterloo Home and Condo Sales Remain Strong in August

Its been another strong month of home sales here in the Waterloo Region. With a total of  459 sold through the Multiple Listing System (MLS®).  The month of August did post a 2.1% decrease in home sales compared to the same month last year across Kitchener-Waterloo and area. However, home sales in the month of August were 9.5% percent above the 5-year average for the month.

This strong sales activity helped bring year-to-date total sales to 3,991, a 6.1% increase compared to the same time last year, and 6% above the 5-year average. Year-to-date sales were also the highest on record since 2008.  There was strong residential sale activity this summer season and with recording setting year-to-date sales it’s clear that buyers remain confident about the value of homes in Kitchener-Waterloo and area.

Residential sales in August included 284 single detached homes (down 2.1% from last year), 35 semidetached (up 2.9%), 29 townhomes (down 17.1%) and 107 condominium units (down 0.9%). The average sale price of all residential sales through the KWAR’s MLS® System increased 6.6% percent last month to $347,057 compared to August 2014. Single detached homes sold for an average price of $401,533 an increase of 6.2% percent compared to last year. The average sale price for a condominium was $241,508, an increase of 7.7% percent and the average sale price for a freehold townhome was $300,546, an increase of 2.9% percent from the same time last year.

Overall these numbers show that the real estate sector here in the Kitchener Waterloo is showing no signs of slowing down and points to a long term stability and strength.

If you have any questions on any of the information provided above or would like to discuss your specific real estate needs please give us a call or email to kevinbaker@kwhometeam.ca

Have a great day!


Another Busy Month of Condo and Home Sales in Kitchener Waterloo for June 2015

Its been a very busy home buying and selling season in June for the residents of Kitchener Waterloo and Waterloo Region.  There were 626 homes sold through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System). This represents a 9.4% increase compared to June of 2014, and 15.8% above the 5 year average for the month June.

Residential sales in the first half of 2015 totaled 2,949, an 8.1% increase compared to the same time last year, and 2.7% above the 5-year average. This marks the highest number of homes sold in the first half of the year since 2010.

On a year-to-date basis, the average sale price of all residential sales (KW and area) increased 2.6% to $347,105 compared to 2014. Single detached homes sold for an average price of $396,191 an increase of 1.3% compared to last year. The average sale price for a condominium units sold in the first half of the year was $235,081, an increase of 5.3 per cent over 2014. The housing market in Kitchener-Waterloo continues to show strength Buyers have confidence in Waterloo Region, that combined with low mortgage and interest rates should continue to support home sales in 2015.

Sales for the month of June in KW and area included 407 single detached homes (up 7.1 %), 137 condominium units (up 24.5%), 42 semi-detached (up 7.7%) and 35 freehold townhouses (down 12.5%). Across KW and area the average sale price of all residential sales through the Kitchener Waterloo MLS® System increased 0.2% to $351,259 compared with June 2014.

Looking at transactions strictly in the cities of Kitchener-Waterloo residential sale prices increased 3.2 percent to $344,405 compared to the same time last year. Single detached homes sold in June across KW and area had an average price of $408,569 an increase of 0.9% compared to last year. Condominium market prices were up 4.2%, with the average condo unit selling for $225,390.

If you have any questions or would like more specific neighborhood information about your home please feel free to give me a call at 519-497-4646 or email kevinbaker@kwhometeam.ca


Strong Month of May for Kitchener Waterloo Home and Condo Sales

It was another fantastic month for the local real estate market here in Waterloo Region .There were 553 home sales in Kitchener-Waterloo and surrounding area through the Mls system.

This represents an 8.4% increase compared to May of 2014, and 9.6% above the 5 year average for the month May. With a total of 2,926 home sales occurring through the Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate Board, year-to-date sales are 3.3% above the five year average.

Although sales numbers in Kitchener-Waterloo are higher in comparison to May of last year, they are on par with the month of April, at 1.7% above last month’s residential sales numbers, a difference of nine home sales. It’s been a very busy but typical spring market. Low mortgage interest rates and a diverse local economy continue to support home buying in Waterloo region.

Much like the month of April, sales activity in the $300,000 – $349,999 posted a healthy increase in the month of May with 126 homes sold in that range, a 24.8% increase from the same time last year. Sales in the $400,000 – $499,999 also increased with 81 sold in this price range, a 28.6% increase.

Sales in KW included 355 single detached homes (up 4.7 %), 113 condominium units (up 28.4%), 44 semi-detached (up 2.3%) and 40 freehold townhouses (up 8.1%). The average sale price of all residential sales through the Mls, increased  1.6 percent to $343,750 compared to May 2014. Single detached homes sold for an average price of $390,704 an increase of 1.1% compared to last year. Condominium market prices were up 7.1%, with the average condo unit selling for $237,649.

If you have any questions or are thinking of buying or selling in the coming months feel free to give me a call.

Have a great week!

Kevin


CMHC Raises Insurance Premiums for Highest Risk Purchasers – Kitchener Waterloo Condos and lofts

Are you looking to buy your first home or condo?  Do you have less than 10% as a down payment?

If so then you need to be aware of recent changes to the mortgage insurance premiums that are offered through CMHC   (Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation)

It was announced a few days ago that Canada’s federal housing agency is raising mortgage insurance premiums as part of a plan to boost its capital reserves.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. said it is raising premiums on the highest-risk mortgages – borrowers who have down payments of less than 10 per cent – by 15 per cent starting June 1.

What does this mean for buyers?

The increases only apply to new mortgages for borrowers with small down payments. Those who put down more than 10 per cent of the purchase price aren’t affected. Premiums will also remain unchanged on CMHC’s portfolio insurance, which lenders take out on bundles of uninsured mortgages so they can securitized them, as well as the agency’s insurance for apartment buildings.

The effects will be modest for affected borrowers. An average Canadian borrower who can afford to pay the only the minimum 5-per-cent down payment typically takes out a mortgage of $252,000, CMHC said. Premiums for those borrowers would rise $5 a month, or about $1,500 more over the course of a 25-year mortgage.

CMHC predicted the changes would “not have a material impact on housing markets,” suggesting the agency isn’t looking to cool the housing market. Senior vice-president Steven Mennill stressed in a call with reporters that the changes were a “business decision” related to higher capital requirements and “not in any way related to a change in policy or approach.”

One thing is clear: By limiting increases only to borrowers with less than 10-per-cent down payments, the federal corporation is concerned that it was underpricing the risk on the most indebted borrowers.

Mortgages with lower levels of equity are typically more vulnerable to a housing shock and require higher levels of capital reserves to account for potential losses, which means higher premiums for riskier borrowers.

My advice would be is if you are thinking of buying a home or condo this spring and have less than a 10% down payment that you take advantage of the lower premiums offered before June 1st.

For more details or questions please email myself at kevinbaker@kwhometeam.ca   or give us a call at 519-579-4110

Enjoy your week!

Kevin


Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate Market Update for March 2015

It was another solid month of home sales in March here in Waterloo Region. Residential property sales through the MLS system continued to climb month over month with 619 properties sold. This represents a 15.1 percent increase compared to the March of 2014 which was the second lowest March on record since 2006.

During the first quarter of 2015, there were a total of 1,343 home sales, 3.6 percent above last year’s total for the same period and 8.4 percent below the 5 year quarterly average, which is again great news and shows continued strength of our local housing market.

Sales activity in the $300,000 – $349,999 increased significantly in the month of March with 151 homes sold in that range, a 49.5% increase from the same time last year. Pushing the average sales price up for the month were increased sales in the $500,000 – $749,999 range which posted a 61.5% increase equating to 63 sales compared to 39 in March 2014.

March’s sales included 436 single detached homes (up 25.3 %), 95 condominium units (down 2.1 %), 41 semi-detached (down 8.9) and 41 freehold townhouses (down 6.8%).The average sale price of all residential sales increased 7.4 percent to $347,722 compared with March 2014. Single detached homes sold for an average price of $384,635 an increase of 4.0 percent compared to last year. In the condominium market prices were up 12.1%, with the average condo unit selling for $238,846.

Overall the market is still moving forward and prices remain stable. We are expecting another busy spring market which seems to be well underway at this point.

If you have any questions about the local market or would like more information on home prices for your neighborhood, please feel free to give me a call or email direct at kevinbaker@kwhometeam.ca

Thanks and have a great week!

Kevin


June Condo Update for Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate

It was another solid month for home sales in Waterloo Region. Although the number of sales was down compared to last year they were up compared to the 5 year average. Prices were also up which is  a great sign that the buyers are still out there and looking to make a move. If you have any questions or would like more specific pricing on your home please don’t hesitate to give me a call.

 

STEADY STREAM OF HOME SALES FOR THE MONTH OF MAY

KITCHENER-WATERLOO, ON (June 4, 2014) –– Residential property sales through the Multiple Listing
System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) in May were down
5.6 percent compared to last year’s record setting month of May.
A total of 725 residential properties were sold in the month of May compared to 768 the same time
last year. This was only the second time since 2007 that residential sales in May have exceeded 700
total sales. Comparing the 5-year average for the month of May shows a 5.7 percent jump in
residential sales.
“The spring home buying season was in full swing this May” says Lynn Bebenek, President of KWAR.
“Strong sales and price gains reflect the confidence homebuyers have in regional housing market as
a great place to live and invest.”
May’s sales included 514 single detached homes (down 3.4 % from last year) 101 condominium units
(down 17.9 %), 60 semi-detached (up 3.4 %) and 43 freehold townhouses (down 2.3 %).
The average sale price of all residential sales through the KWAR’s MLS® System increased 3.5 percent
last month to $345,323 compared with May 2013. Single detached homes sold for an average price
of $386,474 an increase of 2.1 per cent compared to last year. The average sale price for a
condominium was $226,157, an increase of 6.4 percent compared to May 2013.


May 2014 Update for Kitchener Waterloo Condo Market

The nice weather looks like it is finally here to stay which is great news for the local Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate Market. Over the past months we have been experiencing a slight slow down in sales mostly due to the abnormally cold weather we have been having. The weather man is promising nicer weeks ahead and a warm summer so that is great news.

Although sales in April are up over March of this year, we are down year over year approximately 6%.  The condo market here is Kitchener Waterloo is growing at a fast pace with many new building projects underway but the sales there have remained flat.

The great news is that prices are still climbing. Average price is up 2.9% or almost $344,000.  That means that even with the low inventory levels that we have been experiencing the buyers are still out there and willing to pay to get the home of their dreams.

For a complete rundown on the stats you can read them below. If you have any questions on the market in general or specific pricing of your home feel free to give us a call. We would be happy to come over.

 

APRIL HOME SALES UP OVER MARCH, DOWN YEAR-OVER-YEAR

KITCHENER-WATERLOO, ON (May 6, 2014) – There were fewer residential property sales through the
Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS®
(KWAR) in April compared to the same month last year.
A total of 652 residential properties sold in the month of April compared to 691 the same time last
year, a decrease of 5.6 percent. In comparison to March, residential sales grew 21 percent,
continuing the trend of monthly increases in home sales since the beginning of this year.
“We’re continuing to see increasing sales activity month after month,” says Lynn Bebenek President
of the KWAR. “Persistently bad weather seems to have delayed decision to buy or sell homes, but the
combination of increasing monthly sales, lower mortgage rates and some sun should drive increases
in the months ahead.”
April’s sales included 445 single detached homes (down 6.1 % from last year) 121 condominium units
(on par with last year), 38 semi-detached (down 19.1 %) and 41 freehold townhouses (down 2.4 %).
Year-to-date residential sales were 6.6 percent below last year with 1,948 residential homes sold thus
far.
While sales were a little slower this month the average sale price of all residential sales through the
KWAR’s MLS® System increased 2.9 percent to $343,839 compared with April 2013. Single detached
homes sold for an average price of $387,130 an increase of 2.2 percent compared to last year. The
average condominium price was up 9.8 percent selling for $237,008, partially due to the sales of
higher end condominium townhomes alongside traditional condos.


April Real Estate Update for Kitchener Waterloo – A Slower March to Spring

KITCHENER‐WATERLOO HOME SALES ‐ A SLOWER MARCH TO SPRING

KITCHENER‐WATERLOO, ON (April 3, 2014) –– Residential property sales through the Multiple Listing System
(MLS® System) of the Kitchener‐Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR), were down 12 percent last month,
compared to March 2013. There were 536 residential sales reported during the month of March, 23 percent more
than in February.

Looking at the first quarter of 2013, there were a total of 1,293 residential sales, a decrease of 7.3 percent
compared to last year’s 1,395 sales.

“As everyone knows, we’ve just come off of one of the harshest winters on record”, says Lynn Bebenek, president of
the KWAR. “Anecdotally speaking I’ve heard from several business operators who say they’ve experienced a
slowdown this winter because of extreme cold and snow, and our residential real estate market was no different.”
Bebenek adds, “On the bright side, everyone has buyers waiting and hopes are resting on a busy spring.”
Home sales in March 2013 included 347 detached homes (down 13 percent), 98 condominium units (down 4.9
percent), 44 semi‐detached (down 24.1 percent), and 43 townhomes (on par).

The dollar volume of residential sales in the first quarter of 2014 came in at $423,915,584, a 5.9 percent decline
compared to the same period last year.

Single detached homes sold through the KWAR’s MLS® System in March went for an average price of $368,896,
virtually unchanged from the same month last year when the average price was $368,706. On a year‐to‐date basis,
the average price of a single detached home sold for $377,711, a 3.4 percent increase.
The average sale price of all residential sales also increased a negligible 0.1 percent to $322,833 last month
compared to the same month last year. On a year‐to‐date basis, the average price edged up a little higher to
$327,854, representing a 1.6% increase over 2013.

If you have any questions or would like a Pricing Analysis on your home please give me a call at 519-579-4110


CMHC Premiums Are Going Up – Kitchener Waterloo Condos for sale

CMHC (Canadian Mortgage Housing Corporation) Announced that their Loan Insurance Program is going to be changing. What does that mean for Canadians purchasing properties with less than 35% down? Have a look at the chart below to see how the costs will be changing. If you have any questions or would like any advice please give us a call.

CHMC PREMIUM UPDATE

 


Condo Sales Up! February 2014 Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate Update

JANUARY’S DEEP FREEZE SLOWS OVERALL HOME SALES
CONDO SALES UP IN JANUARY

With most of the country still locked in the DEEP FREEZE, Kitchener waterloo still remains strong on pricing even though sales are slipping a little. The warm weather approaching soon(i hope), I would expect that the market will kick into high gear with strong sales.

If you have any questions on the market in general or specific pricing of your home please don’t hesitate to give me a call.

See below to read the excerpt from the Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate Boards stats.
KITCHENER-WATERLOO, ON (February 5, 2014) –– Homes sales through the Multiple Listing System (MLS®) of the
Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) in January were down 5.3 percent compared to January
of last year.
A total of 319 residential properties were sold compared to 337 the same time last year. Residential sales in
January included 207 single detached homes (down 13.4% from last January), 17 semi-detached (down 29.2%),
18 townhomes (down 28%) and 74 condominium units (up 54.2%).
“Coming off a strong 2013, the pace of home sales slowed down somewhat in January,” stated Lynn Bebenek,
President of the KWAR. “The weather didn’t help much either; the extreme cold and heavy snow made
January a less than desirable month to be out looking at houses.”
January’s deep freeze didn’t hamper sale prices however, single detached homes sold for an average price of
$375,009 an increase of 5.7 percent compared to last year. The average sale price for a condominium was
$214,921 an increase of 1.5 percent, while townhomes and semis sold for an average of $263,679 (down 0.9%)
and $254,807 (up 3.5%) respectively. The average sale price of all residential sales through the KWAR’s MLS®
System increased 1.1 percent to $323,533 compared to January 2013.
“The winter months can be hit or miss depending on the weather,” says Bebenek. “Buyers and sellers will be all
the more eager once spring hits, and we are expecting a strong spring market.”


Top 10 Mortgage Tips for 2014 – Kitchener Waterloo Condos and Lofts

A peek at the year ahead: Our top ten mortgage tips for 2014!

Your home may be the biggest investment you’ll ever make. That means you want to be smart with your mortgage. Although we can’t say for sure what mortgage rates will do – or how the housing market will shift – we have compiled our top tips for the year ahead; sensible strategies for today’s homebuyers and owners.

  1. Variables are back. Several lenders are offering strong “prime minus” rates that could save you thousands in interest. And the Bank of Canada is still holding their key “overnight rate” very steady and very low… making variable-rate mortgages a sensible option right now. Fixed versus variable has always been a challenging mortgage decision. Let us help you decide which financing option best meets your needs.
  2. Don’t sleepwalk through your mortgage renewal. Don’t miss out on an opportunity to save thousands on your mortgage. When your lender sends you a letter saying it’s time to renew… then it’s time to get an expert second opinion. We’re independent and we have access to over 50 lenders. If there’s a better deal, we’ll find it.
  3. Pay your phone bill on time! Paying your bills on time has always been the most important credit habit. Equifax recently started to include phone companies on credit bureau reports – so your lender can see if you have any delinquencies with your phone bills. Look like a good borrower.
  4. Keep other good credit habits. Don’t let your credit accounts exceed 30 per cent of your limit. Don’t cancel an old credit card without getting advice. And don’t sign up for store cards: they often have crazy interest rates, and the application triggers a credit inquiry (you don’t want a lot of those).
  5. Mortgage versus total debt. Do you have high-interest debt outside your mortgage that you won’t be able to pay off in the next few months? Then think about rolling that debt into a new low-rate mortgage. This one, smart strategy could save you thousands… and boost your monthly cash flow. We can analyze your situation to see if you qualify.
  6. What’s the prepayment penalty? Don’t let anyone tell you prepayment penalties are “all the same”. They’re not. If you ever need to get out of your mortgage early, the right mortgage could save you thousands. Not all lenders calculate penalties the same way, and the differences can be substantial. It helps to know which lenders have the most fair prepayment penalties. With access to dozens of lenders – we’ve got that information at our fingertips.
  7. If one of you wants to keep the marital home. If you are going through a separation or divorce and one of you wants to keep the marital home, we’ve got some great mortgage options, including a mortgage to 95 per cent. Your home can be the asset that gives you both a fresh start!
  8. A paydown will pay it forward. Take every opportunity to beat down your mortgage principal using any prepayment privileges! Use tax refunds, bonuses, whatever. Or switch to weekly or bi-weekly payments. Every dollar you pay down on principal means every future payment goes further.
  9. Thinking renovation? We see what you see. Your reno will add value to your home. That’s why we have a special “Refinance Plus Improvements” mortgage that lets you refinance up to 80 per cent of the new, post-reno value of your home. Cool deal.
  10. Come in for a checkup. Your mortgage needs an annual checkup. Really. Life doesn’t stand still, which means your needs may have changed. Even a minor tweak can pay big dividends.

How To Hide All Those Cords from Behind the Desk

Do you find that all those, computer, phone, monitor cords etc are a real pain to look at everyday? Do you wish you had a great idea to hide them from sight?

images (3)

Well here is a great blog post I found on how just to do that.  Have a look and have  fun with the project

http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/20759446/list/Hide-Cords-in-Style-With-DIY-Graphic-Panels


October 2013 Market Update for Kitchener Waterloo Real Estate

SOLID HOME SALES IN OCTOBER

KITCHENER-WATERLOO, ON (November 5, 2013) –– Residential property sales through the Multiple Listing System
(MLS®) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) in October were down 4.0 percent
compared to October of last year.

A total of 481 residential properties were sold compared to 501 the same time last year. Year-to-date sales are
up 3.3 percent with 5,620 homes trading hands so far this year. That stands 2.2 percent above the 5-year
average and up 3.2 percent from the same time in 2012. Residential sales in September included 313 single
detached homes (down 2.8% from last October), 44 semi-detached (down 8.3%), 36 townhomes (up 9.1%) and
85 condominium units (down 7.6%).

“On a monthly basis the number of sales in October was in line with the average of the past 5 years,” says
Dietmar Sommerfeld, President of KWAR. “Looking at year-to-date figures, homes sales are the highest they’ve
been compared to the last five years.”

Sommerfeld says he is confident about the local economy and the region’s housing market, pointing to a
recent Canadian Mortgage Housing Corporation (CMHC) report (Fall 2013) that states steady mortgage rates
combined with stable/increasing employment in the Region will continue to keep housing demand strong
moving into early 2014.

Single detached homes sold for an average price of $352,807 an increase of 3.6 percent compared to last
year. The average sale price for a condominium was $214,226 a decrease of 0.7 percent compared to
October of last year. The average sale price of all residential sales through the KWAR’s MLS® System increased
3.3 percent to $312,785 compared to October 2012.

If you ever have any questions on the information provided or specific pricing of your home feel free to give me a call to discuss. I am always happy to help.


Get the Best Mortgage Rate: Five tips for Financial Fitness – Kitchener Waterloo Condos and Lofts

 

When the time is right for you to buy a home, make sure you are financially fit and eligible for the best possible mortgage rates. Here are our top five tips to boost your “financial fitness”:

1. Whip it. Whip your credit rating into shape: pay your bills on time… every time. Keep your oldest credit card for its history, and make sure it’s always paid on time. Try not to apply for any new credit.

2. Follow the 33% rule. Never run up a credit card or line of credit past 33% of its available limit. If you’ve got a $3,000 limit, then $1,000 is your absolute ceiling.

3. Cash is king. Gather up the maximum down payment possible. The more money you put down on a home, the better.

4. Be prepared. Put together a file folder with the following: pay stubs, or proof of self-employment income, list of debts and assets, and current bank statements. We can advise what you’ll need.

5. Start a dialogue. Talk to us about your plans. Find out if you can pre-qualify, and ask about how you might qualify for the best possible rate.

The process of qualifying for a mortgage begins long before you decide to buy a home! But if you make a plan to improve your financial fitness… you’ll have no shortage of lenders willing to compete for your business. For more information or a connection to a great Broker just give me a call. I am happy to help.