Tag: real estate

Investors are Entering the Student Condo Market

Investors across the country have taken note of student cities and have begun purchasing condos and renting them to students. With the number of enrolled students across Canada on the rise and the cost of an education reaching new heights, investors should definitely consider this strategy of entering the student condo market.

Since 2000, the number of enrolled students across Canada has grown by 44%, reaching more than a million, according to the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada.  The cost of an education in Canada is also on the rise. Investors catering to this market are aware that they are renting not to the poor student, but effectively, to their wealthy parents. These are parents who are more and more prepared to pay a premium to ensure that nothing gets in the way of their children’s education. In fact, the key to building a profitable and manageable student-housing portfolio lies at the high end of the student condo market.  These property types are a great option to both student and their parents for a number of reasons.

Security

Student condos and purpose-built apartment buildings have cameras in all common areas, as well as onsite staff, which gives parents peace of mind.  They also have security systems to control entry, as well as 24/7 video monitoring that protects the premises.

Professional Property Management

Managing 18 and 19-year-olds who are enjoying their first taste of freedom can give Landlords a headache worse than a morning-after hangover.  But you can eliminate this burden by having a professional property management firm handle your rental property on your behalf.

Maintenance

All the maintenance is handled by the condo, including snow removal, gardening, and cleaning common areas.

Preferred by the City

Condos are a preferred structure for municipalities.  Compared to illegal rooming houses, this structure ensures the building isn’t at risk of being shut down.

Fewer Rooms

Condos typically have fewer rooms than student houses.  Fewer rooms mean fewer students per unit and a lower chance that damage and Tenant issues will arise.  Condos are more desirable than larger houses with more distractions.

 

Pre-construction condos are one of the best ways to invest in the student condo market.  Purchased several years before students apply to schools, investors aren’t competing with parents on resale properties.  They often come with full rental guarantees and free or low-cost property management, making them a hands-off investment option.

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Five common mistakes home buyers make to watch out

Buyers are often so focused on finding the desired property within their budget that they make unnecessary and costly mistakes.  Here are five common mistakes home buyers make to watch out for:

1. Not Hiring a Qualified Home Inspector

Just like any other profession – no two Home Inspectors are created equal.  Always be sure to research a variety of professionals.  Find out how they report back results and determine their level of knowledge with the type of home they are inspecting.  You want someone who will take detailed notes and pictures, provide guidance, and take the time to explain the various concerns/benefits of the home.

2. Ignoring the Value of the Neighbourhood

The neighbourhood in which a home is located in is often ignored.  The focus is usually on the features of the home, but what about access to transit, schools, shops, and highways?  How do the other homeowners maintain their properties?  Is the area in a state of growth, stability, or decline?  Does the house conform to the general area?  Is it the worst or best house on the street?  All of these factors can impact not only the current market value but its anticipated future value.

3. Getting Caught up in Multiple-Offer Situations

A number of local real estate markets across Canada are experiencing high buyer demand with relative lack of active listings.  Typically, this trend will push home prices upwards.  This is often compounded by homes that are being priced below market value, and sellers not accepting offers until a specific date.  The purpose of these selling strategies in a hot sellers’ market is to encourage multiple-offer situations.  All too often, the end result is a buyer paying too much for a home.  As a homebuyer, be prepared to walk away from such a situation.  Allowing your emotions to rule your thinking may end up costing you more money than you should be otherwise paying for a home.

4. Having Search Criteria that is too Broad

Home buying should involve the process of elimination, not addition.  It’s normal to begin the process with a fairly broad set of criteria in terms of home features, location and cost.  Once you’ve had the chance to view a couple of homes and build your knowledge base, then it’s time to make some decisions.  The more focused and efficient your search is, the more you’re likely to find the home you actually want.  When search criteria are too broad, we tend to get overwhelmed and have difficulty making meaningful decisions.

5. Not Hiring a Professional REALTOR®

As in the case with every professional service provider, not all REALTORS® are made the same.  Do your homework.  Review REALTOR® websites, ask friends and family and interview multiple Real Estate Sales, Professionals.  A referral to a reputable REALTOR® can be a great source, but just because your good friend has a parent in the business doesn’t mean they’re a good fit for you.

 

Keep these five common mistakes home buyers make in mind when you are looking for your next home.

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Market Update
Apr
14

Market Watch

Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 853 residential properties in February 2015 through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® system, compared with 868 in February 2014, a decrease of 1.7%. In this February 2015 market update, the five-year average for February sales is 914.

“Even though we had one of the coldest months on record, resales for the month of February are only slightly down from last year. Looking at residential properties alone, 13 more properties were sold this February over last February – a 1.9% increase; while the condo market, on the other hand, has been a little slower to gain momentum. That being said, both residential and condo sales are up a total of 226 combined units since January.” – David Oikle, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board

February’s market update noted 168 sales in the condominium property class and 685 in the residential property class. The average sale price of residential properties, including condominiums, sold in February in the Ottawa area was $358,206, an increase of 1.3% over February 2014. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $267,880, an increase of 3.8% over February 2014. The average sale price of a residential-class property was $380,358, a decrease of 0.3% over February 2014.

The hottest segments of the Ottawa market update in February were sales between $300,000 to $400,000, followed by the $200,000 to $300,000 range, and $400,000 to $500,000 range. These price ranges continue to have the highest concentration of properties sold, while residential two-storey homes and bungalows continue to have the highest concentration of buyers.

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