How Not To Overpay When Buying a Condo in London Ontario

How do you, a buyer of a condo in London Ontario, able to act quickly when the condo you like either has multiple offers or the threat of one?

Yes, the condo market in London Ontario is heated as these April statistics say it all.

Being prepared ahead of time is one thing you could do, the other is what I call market education. That means knowing what is on the market as far as styles, prices, neighbourhoods go. What will happen is that once you grasp what the condo market is doing, you can make a decision based on facts and not fear of loss or impulse!

Do not be lulled into complacency as the results can be you overpaying or choosing the wrong condo in London Ontario!

Cosigning a Loan To Buy a Condo in London Ontario?

What are the consequences if your daughter and her husband want to buy a home, but recently asked you to “Co-Sign” on the loan?

Cosigning a loan for a condo

There’s nothing wrong with helping a family member or close friend with buying a home.  However, co-signing on a loan should be done with great care and knowledge of the consequences.  Co-signing means that you are extending your personal credit for the benefit of someone else.  Problem is, if the borrower defaults, the lender will look to you for full repayment.  So you’re not really a co-signer, you’re a co-debtor.  Here are a few tips that may prove helpful when co-signing:

Although you’re co-signing, make sure your co-borrower is putting cash into the transaction.  The more they put in, the lower your risk.

Obtain a credit report on the person you’re co-signing for, even if it’s another family member.  If they’ve defaulted on other debts, there’s a good chance they’ll default on the debt you’re co-signing.

Ask the lender to release you from the loan when the principal balance is reduced to a certain amount.

Examine how your credit rating and ability to borrow will be impacted.  Co-signing on a loan can sometimes impact your ability to get financing if you need it.

Make sure your name is listed on the deed as a co-owner.  And by all means, speak with a good real estate lawyer.

If your son or daughter separate, who owes what on the home? You could end up buying out one or the other.

If the home is sold, will you share in any appreciation or gain in value?

These are only a few of the consequences let alone the dis-harmony between families or a friend. I have advised and helped many families over the years, so not only is a competent lawyer and lender required, but a real estate person with your interests in mind.

Let me share my experience with you.

Reading This Will Cause Your London Ontario Condo To Sell

I read that most people spend more planning a vacation than their financial future and as a Realtor, I can say most people do not spend enough time planning the sale of their condo!

Focus sells condos

Oh, they may read articles about staging, lighting, maybe even search properties on line and then , that is it!

Very little planning is done about how the condo could be marketed better, when it should be marketed, who will market it, what skills do the people you choose to help have, including your lawyer, a listing Realtor who has experience with condos, perhaps even  your finacial advisor or accountant.

 Here are some free links to help nudge you toward making wise decisions!

Pine Valley Condos London Ontario in Demand

The one floor Pine Valley Condo town homes (townhouses) in London Ontario are highly sought after because of the location and the size of the units.

There are 4 clusters of these on Pine Valley, being:

Starting in the $260’s, they offer one of the best values in London Ontario. At present, with the demand for one floor condos being extremely high, there are none available for sale, but stay tuned, I have a few coming up soon.

Townhouse Condos in London Ontario Are Selling Quickly!

When thinking about selling your townhouse in London or South West Ontario, where do you start? When do you start?

How would you feel if you knew some surefire ways to prepare before selling a condo, if you knew about the timely steps to take, the questions to ask, the caveats to be aware of?

This unbiased real estate white paper will get you thinking and keep you on track before, during and after you list your condo for sale.

Here it Is!

 

Over the years I have helped hundreds of condo owners sell their properties and most, if not all, had fears, some had poor perceptions or even false information and all had concerns about pricing , how long will it take, what will it cost and choosing the right brokerage and representative to help.

In this report I prepared,  you will learn and read about the proven methods of getting what you want when you sell your condo in London and a few things to be cautious about and how to know and judge for yourself that the choices you are making are right for you.

Choices in Real Estate

Choosing to choose is a mantra that successful people have used for years which translates into the fact that all the results we get are from our choices!

If things go right or wrong you:

  • Chose the listing price of your condo (or you agreed to what your sales person said the price should be, but it still was your choice)
  • Chose the real estate person to represent you
  • Chose how you wished to be treated, responded to
  • Chose the condition of your condo when it is on the market, the tidiness, cleaness and upkeep

 

Why I Sell Condos and Do Not Just List Them, a Huge Difference !

The condos & houses we list typically sell for more and quicker than the average Realtor because of effective marketing.

We accomplish this first by doing a supply/demand analysis in the immediate area for any home we consider marketing.

All Realtors have access to the same market information; it is the valuation and experience of what that information means to the marketing of a home that matters.

X-rays mean nothing until they are evaluated by a competent physician. Similarly, knowing what the market is doing affects both the marketing time and value

Not sold yet in London

A professional champion real estate lister will not let you gamble with your largest investment of your life, will not give you false hope or convince you to take what could be a very expensive risk on your part.

A true professional will explain the pros and cons of the options available and if you choose that professional, your condo will sell for the market price in the time frame you want and you can move with confidence.

Again, choose wisely!

Once you understand these important issues, you’ll know how to price and sell your condo for the fastest, most profitable sale.  Also, with this information, you’ll never pay too much for any real estate you ever buy again for the rest of your life.

 Read More:

Great Tips Buying a London Ontario Condo

  Condominium living is a popular option for many as it can be a relatively carefree housing option and London Ontario is no exception and by following these tips, it will definitely be carefree!

happy condo buyers in London Ontario

    Most  newspapers now include a condominium section which recognizes the increasing number of people who already live in—or aspire to live in—a condominium.

  The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has created a  guide to help you become an informed condominium buyer and to help you make the best choice. At the end of the CMHC Guide you will find full definitions of some of the terms used.

   It will identify important questions to ask—and the people you should be asking—before you make this important purchase.

  Millennials buying a condo in London Ontario

 At the end of the report, there is a selection checklist to help you narrow down the choice between the different types of condominiums you might see.

  Another great Condos in London guide is one that I have been providing to Londoners for the last 15 years, in it you will see price ranges and styles of condos, neighbourhoods, specific buildings or complexes, local London Ontario links and telephone numbers, maps and tips.

I hope you will find it as helpful as hundreds of clients have.

Cadeau Terrace Condos in London Ontario Sales 2016

2,5,6,7,9,10,14,18 Cadeau Terrace is an  adult orientated condo community  in  Byron, Warbler Woods neighbourhood of London Ontario. Most of these one floor condominium town homes  have a double car garage and some backing on to green space.

Cadeau Terrace  Condos London Ontario

An excellent quiet location for nature lovers, golf enthusiasts and for those who travel and would like a safe upscale neighbourhood. depending on the Cadeau Terrace address, some of these are detached with walk outs.

A very well maintained area, easy access to shopping, services and downtown London located off of Commissioners Road West.

 2 Cadeau Terrace 75 Units 

5 Cadeau Terrace 48 Units 

6 Cadeau Terrace 13 Units

7 Cadeau Terrace 34 Units

9 Cadeau Terrace 39 Units

10 Cadeau Terrace 9 Units

14 Cadeau Terrace 36 Units

18 Cadeau Terrace 43 Units

These are all the condos & houses currently listed for sale on MLS in Byron.

                        

                         Average Prices as per MLS

Address 2015  2016
2 Cadeau $289,788 $334,400
5 Cadeau $294,600 $315,000
6 Cadeau $358,900 $313,750
7 Cadeau No MLS Sales $274,250
9 Cadeau $265,000 $278,000
10 Cadeau $369,900 No MLS Sales
14 Cadeau $360,167 $330,000
18 Cadeau $314,199 $344,950

Note: When you see a large spread between the 2015 prices to 2016, there can be many reasons for such an increase or decrease from year to year. There is no question that demand and appreciation have an effect, but also condition of the property, location, updates and the motivatiion of both the seller and the buyer.

For my clients I do a detailed comparison to explain why!

My Top Picks London Ontario Condos

My Top Picks London Ontario Condos may be helpful to you as I have shown buyers 736 condo apartments, townhouses and town homes in 2016. 

If you are finding it confusing searching MLS, newspapers and magazines or agent websites for a condo in London Ontario, I do too sometimes!

Top picks London Ontario Condos

Knowing the price, styles, location and amenities that every condo apartment or town home or townhouse complex has in London can be daunting and my goal when working with a buyer  is to first educate you, the buyer, about what is available, then assist you in narrowing down the search and then offer you  guidance and my experience & negotiating skills to get you the property that fits.

In London at present there are these apartment condos for sale in London Ontario:

  • 23 from $71,900-$99,900
  • 41  from $100,000 – $150,000
  • 33 from $150,000 – $200,000
  • 31 from $200,000 – $275,000
  • 18 over $275,000

Townhouse Condos that are currently for sale:

  • 6 from $71,000 to $99,900
  • 27 from $100,000 to $150,000
  • 31  from $150,000 – $200,000
  • 58  from $200,000 – $275,000
  • 66  from $275,000 – $350,000
  • 22 from $350,000 – $450,000
  • 37 over $450,000
 Apartment Condos For Sale in London  (My Picks)
Bedrooms Bathrooms Price Description
2 1 $114,500 1000 square feet Plus, bus route UWO
2 2 $137,000 insuite laundry, freshly painted
2 1+1 $163,900 Downtown, hardwood, fireplace, 5 appliances
2 1+1 $197,000 5 appliances, pool, underground parking
2 2 $249,900 9′ ceilings, hardwood, ceramic, master ensuite
2 2 $279,900 Luxury, green space, underground parking
2+1 2 $389,000 Downtown, luxurious, spacious
2 2 $449,000 1850 square feet +, a wow factor
2 2+1 $678,000 Great View
 Townhouse Condos For Sale in London (My Picks)
Bedrooms Bathrooms Price Description
3 1+1 $119,900 Forced air, finished basement
3 2 $147,900 Finished Basement, Patio, 5 appliances
3 2 $169,900 Master ensuite, garage, bus route UWO
4 2+1 $199,000 ,garage, finished basement, large rooms
3 2+1 $249,000 Walk to UWO, garage
2+1 2+1 $279,000 one floor, double garage, finished basement
3 2+1 $369,900 one floor, detached, double garage, finished basement
3 3 $431,000 End unit, park like setting, one floor, double garage
3 3+1 $469,900 Exclusive area, 3500 square feet +, double garage

So, looking for a condo in London Ontario that is right for you should not be guess work or by luck. I know condos, where they are, the best locations, the better built ones,  the better managed ones, the best values, the safest ones, and buildings or complexes to stay away from.

Because of the volume of business I do, I also from time to time have listings that are not on MLS, it could be because they are doing last minute touch ups or my client knows I have many active buyers ready to buy if the right condo becomes available.

New Mortgage Rules To Affect London Ontario Condo Sales?

New Mortgage Rules To Affect  London Ontario Condo Sales?

Effective October 17, 2016, Ottawa has taken measures that affects everyone when selling their home and for anyone taking out an insured mortgage to buy a home.

At the bottom of this post I have included the 4 major changes  and you can read them at your own peril!

read more about condos in London

What I mean is, they are easy to read and comprehend, however, these changes may slow down real estate sales ( not good for home sellers) , affect house & condo  prices, another form to fill out when filing your income tax and prevent some buyers from being able to afford buying a home.

I know why Ottawa did this, it was to slow things down in Toronto and Vancouver, but do the decision makers in Ottawa know that 70% of Canadians do not live in these two cities?

One thing that no one will answer for me yet is:

 “How will these changes affect those who mortgages are coming up for renewal?”

 If you are unsure how any of these changes will affect you, feel free to drop me an email or call me at 519-435-1600.

I plagiarized the following from The Globe and Mail October 3, 2016

As of Oct. 17, a stress test used for approving high-ratio mortgages will be applied to all new insured mortgages – including those where the buyer has more than 20 per cent for a down payment. The stress test is aimed at assuring the lender that the home buyer could still afford the mortgage if interest rates were to rise. The home buyer would need to qualify for a loan at the negotiated rate in the mortgage contract, but also at the Bank of Canada’s five-year fixed posted mortgage rate, which is an average of the posted rates of the big six banks in Canada. This rate is usually higher than what buyers can negotiate. As of Sept. 28, the posted rate was 4.64 per cent.

Other aspects of the stress test require that the home buyer will be spending no more than 39 per cent of income on home-carrying costs like mortgage payments, heat and taxes. Another measure called total debt service includes all other debt payments and the TDS ratio must not exceed 44 per cent.

Who it affects

This measure affects home buyers who have at least 20 per cent for a down payment but are seeking a mortgage that may stretch them too thin if interest rates were to rise. It also affects lenders seeking to buy government-backed insurance for low-ratio mortgages.

Why

The government is responding to concerns that sharp rises in house prices in cities like Toronto and Vancouver could increase the risk of defaults in the future should mortgage rates rise.

The change

As of Nov. 30, the government will impose new restrictions on when it will provide insurance for low-ratio mortgages.

What it is

The new rules restrict insurance for these types of mortgages based on new criteria, including that the amortization period must be 25 years or less, the purchase price is less than $1-million, the buyer has a credit score of 600 and the property will be owner-occupied.

Who it affects

This measure appears to be aimed at lowering the government’s exposure to residential mortgages for properties worth $1-million or more, a category of the market that has increased sharply in recent years in Vancouver and Toronto.

Why

Vancouver and Toronto are the two real estate markets that are of most concern for policy makers at all levels of government. These measures appear to be targeted at those markets.

——

The change

New reporting rules for the primary residence capital gains exemption.

What it is

Currently, any financial gain from selling your primary residence is tax-free and does not have to be reported as income. As of this tax year, the capital gains tax is still waived, but the sale of the primary residence must be reported at tax time to the Canada Revenue Agency.

Who it affects

Everyone who sells their primary residence will have a new obligation to report the sale to the CRA, however the change is aimed at preventing foreign buyers who buy and sell homes from claiming a primary residence tax exemption for which they are not entitled.

Why

While officials say more data are needed, Ottawa is responding to extensive anecdotal evidence and media reports showing foreign investors are flipping homes in Canada and falsely claiming the primary residence exemption.

——

The change

The government is launching consultations on lender risk sharing.

What it is

Currently, the federal government is on the hook to cover the cost of 100 per cent of an insured mortgage in the event of a default. The federal government says this is “unique” internationally and that it will be releasing a public consultation paper shortly on a proposal to have lenders, such as banks, take on some of that risk. The Department of Finance Canada acknowledges this would be “a significant structural change to Canada’s housing finance system.”

Who it affects

Mortgage lenders, such as banks, would have to take on added risk. This could potentially lead to higher mortgage rates for home buyers.

Why

The federal government wants to limit its financial obligations in the event of widespread mortgage defaults. It also wants to encourage prudent lending practices.

What is the London Ontario Condo Market Like?

What is the London Ontario condo market like now and going forward into the new year? I don’t know about the future, but I can share with you some facts.

London Ontario Condo Market

First off, 1695 condominiums have sold in London Ontario from January 1, 2016 to December 2, 2016 and on average, they took 44 days to sell and received 98.2% of the asking price.

Secondly, there are condo neighbourhoods in London where condos were on the market and sold within 3-5 days, and then there are those that were on the market longer than 90 days. It would seem obvious why some sell quicker than others.

Is it price, style, condition, location, marketing or the colour of the front door or because the moon and stars are not aligned? I don’t know about the last one but I can definitely say price, condition and marketing are why some sell quicker and for money and why some do not.

 I know which complexes, neighbourhoods and condo styles sell quicker than others and more importantly, the best values out there because I am in the market 6-7 days a week and I make it a point to know the market and not guess at it!

With the better condos in London selling for 99.2% or more of asking price, there are still units that can be had for 90 95% of the asking price.

Now the question is, are you a seller or a buyer? Both of you may want to know factual numbers and not opinions from your neighbours, your hair dresser or Uncle Bob who knows someone who knows someone  who was in real estate 7 years ago! (Seriously, I had a couple who took Uncle Bob’s advice! They now have gone through 3 different real estate representatives and their condo is still not sold! What a tragedy.)

As a buyer, knowing the difference between market price and the value price are two separate numbers, or I could add another value, the emotional perceptual value.

So, what is the condo market in London like and what will it be like next years?  For the wise who are willing to listen and take professional advice, very good, for the rest, not good!

Buying a condo in London Ontario should not be guesswork!