How Comfortable are you with your debt?  


Have you made plans for Retirement and living debt and mortgage free?  This is a suprising article that explains why more and more Canadians are still paying mortgages into thier retirement years.  More Canadians it seems are carrying mortgages and debt past thier 60's.  In some ways it makes sense for tax purposes.  Do you plan on carrying debt?  Something to think about.  Read on for more info...

 

Pre-retirement Canadians no longer rushing to repay mortgage debt

Special to The Globe and Mail

Looking forward to those sunset years when you can put your feet up and burn your mortgage? Peter Veselinovich notices that a lot of people are quietly putting away their matches.

 

The traditional mortgage market, where younger Canadians scrimp and sacrifice in the expectation that they’ll be paid up when they retire, has been changing, says Mr. Veselinovich, vice-president of banking and mortgage operations for Investors Group in Winnipeg.

 

“There has been a trend developing where people appear to be more comfortable in carrying debt into what may have typically been their retirement years,” he says.

 

Pre-retirement Canadians in their 50s are taking on an alarming amount of debt and are most at risk of bankruptcy, says April Dunn, owner of the Red Door Mortgage Group, a mortgage brokerage in Vancouver, citing a new study that examined some 7,000 insolvency filings.

 

“More than half of all retired Canadians are carrying debt, with many stuck managing two or more payments a month,” she adds, noting that it’s not unusual to see baby boomers who reach retirement about $400,000 short of their financial goals.

 

Yet some older people have other reasons for not winding down from the mortgage market. For them it’s a lifestyle choice, Mr Veselinovich says. “They have decided to use their resources for other matters and believe their cash flow is sufficient to service mortgage debt.”

 

Others are taking advantage of historically low interest rates. Still others are leveraging property that they have paid off or nearly paid off to pass funds to their children so the kids can afford to buy their own places, he adds.

 

People who downsize from large family homes can often afford to move to smaller places mortgage free. “That being said, there may well be prudent reasons for someone with cash in the bank to take out a mortgage,” says Jawad Rathore, a developer of seniors-focused condo properties.

 

“It can make better sense for their lifestyles and also for their balance sheets,” says Mr. Rathore, president and chief executive officer of Fortress Real Developments.

 

A client with sufficient investments to pay cash for a property may choose to mortgage instead, says Mr. Veselinovich. “Why? Because cashing in the investments may trigger income taxes and other fees.”

 

It may make more sense to use the investments to service the debt, he says, drawing out smaller amounts at a potentially lower marginal tax rate. “There may be opportunities for such an individual to make their mortgage tax efficient.”

 

It’s critical to have a mortgage plan, Ms. Dunn says. “Your mortgage is the financial tool that’s tied to your largest asset, so whether you decide to pay it off early or keep your other investments liquid, having a strategy and utilizing your mortgage as a financial tool can help you have the retirement you want.”

 

Age is not the only factor at work here, experts note.

“It is not a question of age. It is a question of suitability,” says Frank Margani, executive vice-president of strategy and development at Fortress Real Developments.

 

“There could be a healthy 80-year-old who wants to put 40 per cent down on a property and has the income streams to support mortgage payments, and then it’s fine. On the other hand, there could be a healthy 60-year-old, not yet retired but who can’t afford the mortgage payment.”

 

Age is not a barrier to obtaining mortgage insurance, either. Mortgage holders who put down less than 20 per cent on a property are required to buy insurance from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. Others who make higher down payments can buy life insurance, but Ms. Dunn warns that “just like other types of insurances the premiums increase as we get older, and there are some age restrictions by some insurance companies. Premiums can get quite expensive the older we get.”

 

Some other questions to consider are whether you want an open or closed mortgage and to what extent you want to involve other family members in the purchase. If they’re on the deed they can take over payments; on the other hand, dealing with your later-in-life property can be emotional for them.

 
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I have listed a new property at 224 SILVERADO RANGE CLOSE SW in CALGARY.
RED HOT INVESTMENT PROPERTY!!! Great family home - tucked away in a quiet close - perfect for children. Outstanding plan with a main floor den in front with large sunny windows. Family kitchen with a large center island - double sinks - breakfast bar - and yes - a large pantry. The entire kitchen and living room feature hardwood floors and a gas fireplace - so nice!! Three generous bedrooms up with the master offering a large walk-in closet and full ensuite bathroom. The two remaining bedrooms share a semi-private bathroom - great for kids... Additional amenities include arched doorways, rounded corners, and upper floor laundry... great west back yard with a double rear garage. This home is vacant and ready for immediate possession...
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Spring is almost here and it is time to say goodbye to winter!  I say good riddance, but with Spring comes the Dreaded Spring Cleaning!  

 

 

Looking for creative ways to get your kids to help out as you spruce up your home this spring? 

 

Getting kids to participate can be easier when you inject some fun into household chores. If you start kids at a young age and keep things fun, they'll enjoy pitching in. Plus, it teaches them independence and responsibility.

 

Here are some simple tips to get the kids involved in cleaning this spring.  

Assign age-appropriate tasks that can be achieved in short increments (ten to fifteen minute spurts for younger children), and make it fun. Whether you play music or an audiobook, or turn cleaning into a scavenger hunt or game, your kids will be more willing to help out if they have fun while cleaning.

 

Try the PC GREEN line, found at your local Real Canadian Superstore that includes everything from all-purpose cleaners, floor cleaners to paper towels. Not only are these cleaning products safer for your family compared to conventional cleaners, these great performing products are also better for the environment, so you can feel good about using them.

 

Reward your kids with a treat once cleaning is complete. Whether it's taking them out for a pizza dinner or renting their favourite movie, they'll be more likely to want to help out in the future if they're rewarded for their efforts.

 

 

Are you thinking of Buying or Selling your home in Calgary

 

Contact Lawrence today!

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TOP 10 TIPS TO SUCCESSFUL HOME STAGING!

 

 

Preparing your house for selling can be a daunting and overwhelming task whether you have lived in your home a few years or many. The longer you have lived in your home the more things you will have acquired. The intent of this Top 10 Tips for Successful Home Staging is to help you save TIME, MONEY and ENERGY.

In preparing your house for selling you need to take a step back and have the mind set that this is no longer your home but your investment for your future. You want your home to have broad buyer appeal to your target market. Following these 10 Tips for Successful Home Staging will help you sell your house sooner and possibly for more money than if you did not prepare it for selling! Remember most people want to move into their new home without having to make updates to it.

1. Curb Appeal 

Stand back and view your home as if you were seeing it for the first time. This is the ‘first impression’ stage. Depending on the season you may want to have pots of colourful and attractive flowers to greet buyers; a clean and inviting door mat; new and shiny door handles and/or knockers; a freshly painted door.
  

2. Declutter 

Start your pre-pack as soon as possible. You need to decide what you are going to keep, give away, sell or throw away/recycle. Many clients will rent storage lockers or have pods delivered so they can start to clear out what is not going to make the house look good.

3. Clean

You would think this one is common sense but let me assure you, I wish it was so! A clean home translates into ‘They must have really cared for their home.” Use environmentally friendly cleaners where you can, for hard cleaning areas tsp is a good product. Bathrooms and kitchens must be sparkling clean at the very least.

4. Depersonalize

We know you love your family photos and your personal treasures and for living they are perfect. For selling pack them up carefully so you can showcase them in your new home. For selling you want buyers to focus on the best features of your home and not your personal things or collections.

5. A neutral colour scheme is the way to go for selling.

Choose only 3 colours or less to paint your house for selling. If you have an open floor plan then paint the main floor all the same colour. Bedrooms look good in light sage greens or warm blues like the new aqua.

6. Highlight your home’s best architectural features

Place your furniture in each room so that you have very obvious focal points that show off the home’s best selling features. For example, if you have a beautiful fireplace then place the furniture in a parallel grouping so that the eye is drawn to the fireplace.

7. Decide on the function in each room

If you were using your guest bedroom as your den for living, for selling turn it back into a bedroom with bedroom furniture in it. If you do not have the right furniture for each room consider renting it. There are more and more rental furnishing companies opening up every day. If you don’t want to rent then borrow.

8. Lighting your home to its best advantage

Spend money on new light fixtures in brushed nickel or stainless steel. Brass is out so don’t fight it. There are many low-cost lighting stores to select from so no excuses for having dated light fixtures.

9. Window treatments that sell your home 

The most popular on the market are the 2” faux woods in a white tone to go with your trim. Decorative side panels will do the trick if you need to add warmth and colour.

 

10. Flooring needs special attention and is a good investment for updating the look of your home 

Tile or linoleum is great for entranceways, bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms; a good quality laminate or hardwood is perfect for living rooms and family rooms; bedrooms are attractive in a neutral carpet.

By planning and budgeting you can get yourself to the “OPEN HOUSE READY” stage. 

Remember that over 79% of prospective buyers have already checked you out through the MLS listings. Will they like what they see? 

Happy Selling!
 

 
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Calgary Real Estate Homes Sellers Hold all of the Cards!  

 

This is great news for Calgary Sellers!  This is the latest from the Globe and Mail and how the Calgary Real Estate Market is very Strong at the moment and there looks to be no slowing down.  

 

 



Canadian home sales top forecast - And Calgary is leading the way across Canada!  Very infomrative video from Senior Economist at BMO Securities Sal Guatieri.  He has great insight into the Real Estate Market across Canada.  

 

 

 

 

If you are looking to sell your Calgary Home

Contact Lawrence today!

The Very Best!

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