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Kirby Cox's Calgary Real Estate Blog

Whether you’re buying your first home or your third home, there are still some very common pitfalls to avoid. Many times these mistakes are made because of ego or ignorance. However, it should be noted that working with the right REALTOR® (or team of REALTORS®) can help you avoid costly mistakes altogether. 

But, for education sakes, let's go through some common mistakes that buyers can make: 

  • Buying the most expensive home on the block. Remember that your home is an investment. Homes within the neighbourhood escalate in value when the homes around it go up. If your home is the highest standard by which all homes are measured by, your value will increase much less than others.
  • Falling in love with a house that is unattainable or out of your
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Are you a prospective homebuyer? Onto your second or "forever" home? Whatever your situation, preparing for homeownership requires you to a good look at your finances and your expectations so you can put your best foot forward dealing with your mortgage, taxes and home maintenance.

That is why we are going to share our top 7 tips for homebuyers! The first three points all come down to questions you should ask yourself before you start the process of looking for a home. 

  1. Why do you want to buy? Are you tired of paying rent to a landlord? Would you like to have a yard to enjoy? Are you looking to buy your first investment rental property? Would you rather live in a different part of town? Do you want a shorter commute to work? Having a clear sense
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According to a newly released report by Royal LePage Canada, luxury home sales in Calgary have shown signs of recovery. The median price of a luxury detached home increased 0.6 per cent, to $1,990,184 so far in 2018. 

Alternatively, luxury condos are slightly down (6.1 per cent) to $926,620 for the first four months of this year. However, there is a huge inventory of condos on the market in Calgary and the supply continues to be saturated as new builds come onto the market. The luxury house market was down for several years following the recession, so this is encouraging news that prices are rising. 

“While some of the demand stems from buyers employed in the energy industry, it is becoming more common to see executive-level employees within

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The Calgary Food Bank is one of the amazing local organizations that our team is proud to support year after year. If you are looking for a way to give back this month, consider attending one of the events the Food Bank has going on this month: 

  • AMA shredding event: Sunday, May 27 at Al Azhar Shrine Centre (5151 101 Street NW) from 10am to 3pm. This is an event for AMA members to shred and safely dispose of personal documents. You are encouraged to make a monetary or non-perishable donation to the Calgary Food Bank for this event. 
  • Women's Conference: Saturday, May 26 at Kahanoff Centre (200, 105 12 Avenue SE) from 4 to 9pm. Women (18+) are invited to attend an evening of guest speakers and empowerment. Admission is free, but attendees are
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The suburbs are still the number one choice for Calgarians choosing to buy (according to the 2014 City of Calgary census), and if you've never considered living in the suburbs, they have a lot to offer. There are some common misconceptions about living the suburbs that may be holding you back, and we're going to dispell them right now.

According to the 2011 census, 94 percent of the growth in Canada’s cities has been outside the urban core, and nothing has happened to change that trend in the intervening few years. [Ottawa Citizen]

While those numbers are outdated by now, we have seen nothing to prove this trend has shifted. Yet somehow, the suburbs can get a bad rap, so here are some common misconceptions we will debunk:

  • The suburbs
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Spring has finally shown up and in the most amazing way! Temperatures are in the 20s, the sun is shining and wow is the perfect time to get your patio or deck ready for sun and grilling with family and friends!

Here are some quick tips for cleaning your deck or patio:

For Wood Patios:

  • Clean off debris from your deck
  • Inspect for damages: loose boards, nails or rough spots
  • Replace boards if necessary
  • Replace or fix protruding nails
  • Smooth/sand out any rough spots (may need to repaint or restain these spots)
  • Use a deck cleaner (available at hardware stores, ask about the best type for your material)
  • Wear protection when using the cleaner, and hose off patio with water after 20 minutes

For Concrete Patios:

  • Check
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With more listings coming onto the market in March, the inventory of homes available in Calgary has increased, which means buyers have more options.

 "Economic conditions are slowly improving, but it has not been enough to outpace the current impact of higher lending rates and more stringent conditions," said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. "We are entering the most active quarters in the housing market with more inventory, which could create some price fluctuations. However, the improving economy is expected to prevent overall prices from slipping by significant amounts." [CREB]

 Some highlights of the housing market in Calgary right now, according to CREB®:

  • The benchmark price for detached homes in Calgary averages $502,000,
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Yes, spring is finally here! But, we should not forget that with the anticipation of warmer weather this season, we will always be met with a lot of precipitation too. With rain, hail or even snow (as much as we hate to admit it), comes moisture and moisture is never good for your home. When excess moisture goes unnoticed in your home, mould can form.

To understand mould a bit more, let’s go back to the basics.The reproduction of mould occurs through tiny spores, that are present in outdoor and indoor air. The growth of mould indoors occurs when mould spores land on wet surfaces.

It’s important to be aware that moulds can potentially be harmful to humans. Moulds produce allergens, irritants and in rare cases, toxic substances. Depending on the

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Mortgage Stress Test Calgary

Starting on January 1, 2018, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) set a new minimum qualifying rate, or “stress test” for all prospective home buyers, even those with a down payment of over 20%.

Before the new rule, only buyers that had a down payment of less than 20% had to make sure they could pass a stress test. Now it doesn’t matter how much money you save for a down payment, if you don’t pass the new stress test, the bank will not give you a mortgage.

Under the new mortgage stress test, potential home buyers need to qualify for a mortgage at a rate that is either 2% higher than the mortgage rate they qualified for, or the Bank of Canada’s five-year benchmark rate.  For most, that will mean qualifying for a home

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Did you know March is "Community Association Membership Month" in Calgary? It's the perfect time to learn about your community's association and all the great work it does for your neighbourhood, perhaps even getting more involved.

We're lucky in Calgary, that most communities in our city have community associations. Knowing about your community association and where it is located, can offer you a ton of opportunity to get involved in the neighbourhood you live.

What is a community association? 

Community associations are neighbourhood-based volunteer organizations providing support, and opportunities in recreation, education and social life. In Calgary, nearly 150 community associations even operate facilities and/or halls. The Federation of

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