July 13, 2018

Should You Use the Listing Agent When Buying a Home?

Don’t use a listing agent to buy a home. Instead, work with a buyer’s agent who has your best interests in mind.

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Should you use the listing agent when buying a home?

At face value, this seems like a pretty good idea. They have the inside track to the home’s seller, and you can perhaps get some of their commission because they’re getting paid twice on the deal.

The truth, though, is that you won’t get any of their commission if they’re good at their job. This is because they have an agreement with the seller that doesn’t have anything to do with you.

The main factor to consider in this situation is agency, or who represents who in the transaction. In this case, the listing agent represents the seller, represent their interests above their own, just like a buyer’s agent would represent a buyer’s interests above their own.

 

 

 

It’s a direct conflict of interest to go to a listing agent.

 

 

If you go directly to the listing agent when buying a home, they have a conflict of interest in terms of their relationship to you. They need to sell the home for as much money as possible and make the transaction as smooth as possible. You, on the other hand, want to buy the home for as little as possible and make sure your interests are protected.

What you need here is a good buyer’s agent who’s very well-versed in the market you’re thinking of buying in. If you trust them, heed their advice. Do not work with anyone you don’t trust.

If you have any more questions about this topic, don’t hesitate to call or email us anytime. We’d love to sit and chat with you.

Posted in Home Buyer Tips
June 28, 2018

Markets Exist Within Markets

In each city, there are markets within markets where the situation for buyers and sellers is different than what’s happening on a broader level.

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What is the difference between markets within markets?

Each city has separate communities, and each of those communities contains submarkets. For example, let’s say a particular city is a buyer’s market, meaning there are many homes available for sale but not many buyers to buy them. Within that single market, though, many communities can either be buyer’s markets or seller’s markets. And in those communities, different products can represent different submarkets.

Let’s say the Riverwood community in Port Coquitlam has both attached and detached homes. Detached homes are single-family homes with typically a yard and a garage, while attached homes are condos and townhouses. Oftentimes, condos and townhouses will represent a completely different market than the single-family houses. One can be a buyer’s market and one can be a seller’s market.

 

 

 

A single market or area can contain many different submarkets.

 

 

When someone describes the market in a certain way, remember that there are a variety of factors involved that further determine how the situation applies to you specifically and what you’re looking for.

If you’d like to know more about what the market’s like where you live and how the situation applies to you as a buyer or a seller, don’t hesitate to give our team a call or send us an email. We look forward to hearing from you.

 

Posted in Real Estate
June 12, 2018

Why It’s a Bad Idea to Go Directly to a Listing Agent

When buying a home, if you think you can cut yourself a deal by going directly to the listing agent, you are sorely mistaken.

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Don’t go directly to a listing agent when buying a property.

Cutting corners here might seem like a good idea—you could just go directly to the seller’s representative and maybe negotiate some money off of their commission, saving you money in the process.

However, the bad news for you is that the seller’s agent doesn’t represent you.

Think of it this way: If you’re in court as a defendant, would you go to the prosecutor to get advice about how to win the case? Or do you think that their advice would be suspect, given that they represent the side whose interests conflict with yours?

 

 

 

Professional negotiation and representation skills at no extra cost—that’s the reason you should find an agent of your own instead of appealing to the listing agent directly.

 

 

It’s the same thing with the seller’s representation. They have a contract with the seller, and their single goal is for their client to get the best deal they can, and that doesn’t usually involve helping you out.

What’s more, if you try to negotiate their commission down, you not only won’t succeed, but you’ll probably offend that agent.

When you get a buyer’s agent to represent your interests, you’ll want someone to serve your interests above their own. An agent who represents you as a buyer will get around half the commission, but it won’t cost you anymore, since it has already been negotiated with the seller to pay that amount. Professional negotiation and representation skills at no extra cost—that’s the reason you should find an agent of your own instead of appealing to the listing agent directly.

If you would like a more in-depth explanation of how this works or want to chat about real estate in general, please feel free to reach out to someone on the Prince Team. We’ll get back to you straight away.

Posted in Home Buyer Tips
May 29, 2018

Defining the Two Kinds of Value Your Home Has

What’s the difference between assessed value and market value? Today we’ll be covering the important distinction between these two figures.

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Today we will address an important question: What is the difference between market value and assessed value?

 

Well, assessed value is the value put on your home by a tax assessor. This value is used to determine the amount a homeowner pays in terms of property tax, municipal tax, federal tax, or whatever tax is applicable in their area.


On the other hand, market value is the value your home would be sold for in the real estate market. It’s determined by what a willing-and-able buyer who is not under duress would pay a willing-and-able seller for their home.

 

Assessed value determines the amount a homeowner

pays in terms of applicable property taxes for their area.

 

If a home is listed at $500,000 and receives multiple offers, one of which is for $520,000, then the amount of that highest offer would equate to the home’s market value.

 

To get a more in-depth explanation, please reach out to us by phone or email. Someone from our team would be happy to provide you with that information.

 

If you have any other questions or would like more information, feel free to give us a call or send us an email. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Posted in Home Owner Tips
May 18, 2018

Rental Restrictions on Strata Properties

Are you planning on buying a strata property to use as a rental? Here is some information you’re going to need.

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On a strata property, the strata council (made up of members of the people who own property in the building) can decide collectively that they only want to allow a certain percentage of rentals, or no rentals at all. The rental restrictions on strata properties fall into three categories:

 

1. Rentals allowed. Anybody can rent to anybody at any time.


2. Rentals allowed with restrictions. This is the most common. Let’s say there are 100 units and there is a 10% rental restriction. That means only 10 units can be rented out at once. If you want to rent your property and there are already 10 units rented out, you’ll have to go on a waiting list.

3. Rentals not allowed under any circumstances. However, they can’t prevent you from renting to immediate family members via the Strata Property Act.

 

Most strata properties have some kind of rental restriction.

 

Hardship is another thing to know about. If you bought another place, but can’t find someone to buy or rent out your first property, you can ask for a hardship permission from the strata council. If they allow it, you can still rent out your unit even if rentals aren’t technically allowed.

 

This is a complicated topic. If you need clarification or have any questions about the process, don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

 

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Posted in Home Buyer Tips
May 4, 2018

What Is the Typical Offer Process in the Lower Mainland?

How should you make an offer on a Lower Mainland home? Here’s a helpful guide.
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What does the typical offer process look like for a buyer in the Lower Mainland? We’re going over that today.


When you make an offer on a home, you have to consider terms and conditions, the price, and the closing and possession dates. The closing date is actually the date that you pay for the property and the possession date is the day you move in. You also have the deposit to make. Typically, the deposit is due after the subjects are removed from the property. Now, let’s take a closer look at the offer process from start to finish:


1. You make the offer. After negotiating back and forth, you will get to an accepted offer where all the terms are agreed to.


2. You enter the subject removal phase. This takes anywhere from seven to 10 days. During this time, you do your final approval for your financing, your inspections, and review the strata documents (if applicable).


3. Pay your bank draft. This is usually a deposit of around 5% of the purchase price. At that point, we have a firm deal and the bank draft goes into trust at the buyer’s agent’s brokerage.

 

4. Notify the lawyers. Inform lawyers on both the buyer and seller side of all the details. They will handle the transfer of money and title, and then all we have to do is wait.

 

5. Get the keys and move in. After the seller releases the keys, we’ll hand them off to you and we’re done.

 

It’s a straightforward, but complex, process.

 

This is the typical offer process in a normal market. When we have multiple offers, however, it’s quite different. If you have any questions about this or anything else relating to real estate, don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

 

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April 18, 2018

Is Now the Time to Sell?

Is now a good time to sell? It depends on a few things, which we’ll cover today.

 

Today I’m here to answer the question, “Is it a good time to sell?”


The answer to this question depends on a few different factors. The first one is why you’re thinking of selling. Do you need more space for your growing family? In that case, you’re probably going to move regardless of where the market’s at.

 

The second factor is the market itself. Is it a buyer’s market, seller’s market, or a balanced market? To find out, we look at the sales ratio. It’s the number of sales divided by the number of active listings in the given month. Let’s say there were 100 active listings and 20 listings sell. That’s a sales ratio of 20%.  Any sales ratio below 15% is a buyer’s market, 15% to 21% is a balanced market, and 21% and above indicates a seller’s market.

 

I hope this gives you a better idea of what the market is and how it works.

 

I hope this gives you a better idea of what the market is and how it works. If you have any questions or you're just curious about the value of your home, don’t hesitate to reach out and give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

 

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Posted in Home Seller Tips
April 5, 2018

Signs That You’re in a Seller’s Market

How can you tell if you’re in a seller’s market? Here’s a quick explanation.

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Here’s a question I’ve been hearing a lot lately: “What is a seller’s market?” I’m here today to answer that question.

A seller’s market occurs when there's an abundance of buyers and a lack of listing inventory. This puts a lot of pressure on buyers to compete for each listing, which causes prices to increase and multiple offer situations to occur.

"A seller’s market puts a lot of pressure on buyers."

You’ll see buyers make offers over list price and without contingencies. As the bidding war continues, prices will continue to go up.

If you have any questions about what the market looks like where you live, don’t hesitate to reach out and give us a call or send us an email. We would be glad to help.

 

Posted in Videos
March 19, 2018

What Does a Buyer’s Market Look Like?

What does a buyer’s market look like? We’ll explain today.

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What is a buyer’s market? A buyer’s market occurs when we have an abundance of listings and a lack of buyers. In a buyer’s market, there is pressure on prices to stagnate or decrease.

Why would home prices go down in a buyer’s market? Since there are so many homes for sale and not many buyers in the market, sellers are competing to get buyers to purchase their homes. As a result, buyers have the advantage in this market.

"Buyers have the advantage in this kind of market."

If you have any other real estate questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. We would be happy to help you!

Posted in Videos
March 6, 2018

How to Tell if We’re in a Buyer’s or Seller’s Market

There’s an easy way to tell if you’re in a buyer’s or seller’s market. Here it is.

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How can you tell whether you’re in a buyer’s or seller’s market? It’s actually pretty simple.

It’s a data point or a metric called “sales ratio.” This is determined by taking the number of total sales divided by the number of active listings in a given month. For example, 100 active listings and 20 sales in a month will give you a 20% sales ratio.

Any sales ratio below 15% is a buyer’s market, anything between 15% and 21% is a balanced market, and anything above 21% is a seller’s market.

In my next post, I’ll tell you exactly what a buyer’s market is. If you have any questions in the meantime about what kind of market you’re in right now or anything else relating to real estate, give me a call or send me an email. I would be happy to help you.

Posted in Videos