Realtor, Real Estate Okotoks, Cochrane, Calgary

      


Big city deals with a small town feel! 

Specializing in Real Estate in Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & Area


Call or text 403.700-2532   Email: home@griffinre.ca

Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas


The costs associated with selling a home

Deciding to sell your home is a big decision, so it’s always good to remind yourself of what that decision entails, including the associated costs you might incur. Many real estate industry groups have resources available to the public on the home-selling process, such as the Real Estate Council of Alberta’s Home Seller’s Guide. However, most resources don’t specify selling costs, in part because they can vary greatly depending on the individual property and circumstances of the sale. To provide a frame of reference, here is a summary of costs associated with selling a typical $500,000 home in Calgary:

 

Commissions – $19,950
Using a professional REALTOR® to sell your home provides many benefits, and that expertise is repaid in the form of commissions, which are split between your Realtor and the buyer’s Realtor. The industry standard in Alberta is typically seven per cent on the first $100,000 of the selling price, then three per cent on the balance, plus GST.

 

Legal Fees – $1,000
The cost of legal services can vary, but Calgary real estate lawyer Jeffrey Kahane says typical legal fees usually run about $1,000, which includes all necessary disbursements. Kahane adds that if your property is a condominium, there is an additional cost for an estoppel certificate/certificate of insurance, which, depending on the management company, might cost $200 to $350.

 

Real Property Report – $800
The Alberta Land Surveyors’ Association does not set a standard cost for preparing a real property report, as the work required can vary greatly depending on the property and what has been done to it since the original boundaries were placed. Expect to pay an average of about $600 for a new report and $500 to update an existing one, plus about $200 for a Certificate of Compliance from the City of Calgary.

 

Mortgage pre-payment penalty (if applicable) – cost varies
If you sell your home before the maturity date of a closed mortgage there might be penalties for pre-payment. Typically, that will be three months of interest on a closed, variable-rate mortgage, but can be much more if you have a closed, fixed-rate mortgage with an interest rate higher than current rates. In that scenario, you might be charged for interest on the remainder of the term, based on the interest rate differential. Check with your mortgage provider to be certain of the terms of your mortgage and pre-payment penalties.

 

Home staging/renovations – cost varies
Selling a home has sometimes been compared to speed dating, as buyers viewing several homes have only a short period to decide whether your home might be a potential candidate for purchase. So, to boost the chances of selling a home, many people make renovations or minor modifications to freshen things up, such as a new coat of paint. Others hire a home staging professional to make their home stand out from the crowd.

 

Moving expenses – $1,500
Lance Laliberte with Premiere Van Lines says professional moving is billed at an hourly rate, based on the number of movers and trucks needed, so they always recommend an in-home survey to provide the most accurate quote possible. However, he says the average cost for a local move within Calgary for a standard three-bedroom home with between 10,000 and 12,000 pounds of household goods is $1,500 to $2,000 during peak season in spring and summer months and $1,000 to $1,500 during fall and winter months, not including packing or unpacking services.

 

FYI: Bridge financing
If the closing dates for the home you are selling and one that you’ve already purchased don’t coincide, then the solution is bridge financing to cover the gap between your current mortgage and the one on the new property.

Nicole Wells, vice-president of home equity financing products and segments with Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), says a bridge loan is a temporary financing option that enables homeowners to use equity in their existing home to pay the down payment on their next home, while they wait for their property to sell or as they complete renovations on a new home.

 

“It allows you to own both homes at the same time and, for some, can help you buy first and sell later,” said Wells. “It can reduce stress of moving, strengthen your purchase offer and mitigate the need for temporary storage.”

She says a bridge loan is a short-term solution defined by the number of days between your purchase close date and subsequent sale date, which can be as short as one day or run as long as six months.
Wells adds that interest rates for bridge loans can be more expensive than conventional financing, but the shorter loan term can offset the cost.

 

Currently, the cost of bridge financing at RBC is set at RBC prime plus 4.5 per cent.

She suggests anyone considering the use of bridge financing should speak to their mortgage specialist to find out if it’s right for them.

 

Source: CREB NOW

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Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas

Maybe you’re buying a home for the first time. Or maybe you’re selling your old home to move to something new. Whether buying or selling, you’re involved in an intricate process requiring many specialists. One of these specialists might be a REALTOR®, who’s responsible for making the transaction as easy as possible for you.

The REALTOR® Difference

However, not every licensed or registered broker or salesperson is a REALTOR®. To be a REALTOR®, the agent must be a member of The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). And to be a member of CREA, an agent is expected to be:

  • Committed to the REALTOR® Code: The code is the accepted standard of conduct for all real estate practitioners who are REALTORS®. It’s your guarantee of professional conduct and the quality service. Read more about the REALTOR®Code.
  • Knowledgeable about developments in real estate: A REALTOR® can get you the information needed to make an informed decision: comparable prices, neighborhood trends, housing market conditions and more.
  • Actively updating education: Through courses, workshops and other professional development, a REALTOR®maintains a high level of current knowledge about real estate.
  • Access: REALTORS® have access to Board MLS® Systems, which facilitate the cooperate sale of properties to benefit consumers.

Benefits of a REALTOR®

Whether buying or selling a home, you can trust that your REALTOR® will ensure the transaction is completed competently and professionally. You don’t have to worry about the details – your REALTOR® can take care of them for you. You can get advice from someone with an intimate knowledge of the local housing market. And you can count on the help of a professional who has committed to serve with integrity and competence.

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Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas

Moving with pets Okotoks

How to make moving easier on your four-legged family members

 

For Erika Lagyjanszki, a 25-year-old wedding photographer, moving out of her basement apartment was a stressful ordeal for both her and her pets.

Finding a new rental that would allow her two dogs – Bailey, a four-year-old husky border collie cross, and Diesel, a two-year-old shepherd husky cross – while trying to time the logistics of the move added to her exasperation.

And, while Lagyjanszki had moved before and knew what to expect, she wasn’t prepared for the affect the experience had on her pets.

 

“They did not do well with the move at all,” she said. “We had to stay at a friend’s house for a month in between moving and the dogs kept getting into fights. That had never happened before, and it got to the point where I had to get in between them. I’d also come back after a day at work and the place would be trashed.”

Moving is a very stressful event, as any homeowner or renter can attest. But, what we don’t often think about is the effect it has on our furry friends. Both cats and dogs can suffer stress when their world is suddenly changed.

“Moving can be stressful for pets because their whole routine is being uprooted, and you can’t explain to them what’s going on,” said Ashley Barton, certified trainer and general manager of Chasin’ Tails Dog Care Center and boarding facility in Calgary. “Pets rely on the regular flow of their everyday, so now when all their belongings are being packed up and moved somewhere else, it can be extremely stressful on them.”


Boarding can help

When you move, the front doors are usually propped open, and the last thing you need to worry about is your pet escaping while you are packing everything into the truck.

That’s why Barton says sending your pooch or kitty to pet daycare, or boarding them for a couple of days while you move can help with the transition.

“Boarding your pet while you move is a great idea to relieve stress for not only your pet, but for you as well,” she said. “When your pet is used to going to a boarding facility, or staying with a friend, it’s still a regular event for them to go to the sitter. They can be happy on their pet vacation, and you don’t have to stress about them being around for the big day.”


WHEN YOUR PET IS USED TO GOING TO A BOARDING FACILITY, OR STAYING WITH A FRIEND, IT’S STILL A REGULAR EVENT FOR THEM TO GO TO THE SITTER. THEY CAN BE HAPPY ON THEIR PET VACATION, AND YOU DON’T HAVE TO STRESS ABOUT THEM BEING AROUND FOR THE BIG DAY.


For dogs, a doggy daycare is like one big play date for your pooch – one that leaves them tired at the end of the day, which is ideal when you’re introducing them to a new space.

“Moving is taxing on you as much as it is on your dog, so knowing that you are bringing a happy, tired dog into the new home can help lessen anxiety or unwanted behaviours in the new house,” said Barton.

For cats, a vet clinic or friend’s house is ideal, so that when they are brought to the new home they can settle into their new environment without all the commotion typical of a move. Leaving a few moving boxes around will give your feline friend a place to take shelter.


Signs of Stress

While our pets can’t tell us if they are stressed in words, they do give us signs to relay the message that they are feeling anxious, says Tyson Hainsworth, master dog trainer at Dog Squad in Calgary.

Hainsworth says some signs to look for in dogs include panting, whining and drooling. For cats, a lack of appetite can be a sign that your pet may be stressed.

What to do

Dogs present a special case. Hainsworth says if a dog knows he doesn’t need to be the protector of the pack, he will be pretty calm anywhere you take him.

How to show him you’re the top dog? Only give him attention on your terms, says Hainsworth. “Don’t give Fido attention when he demands it through things like pawing, jumping, barking, nipping, etc.”

In addition, Hainsworth also says to teach the dog that you are the leader on walks.

“When it comes to the new neighbourhood, if your dog will walk a half step behind you (on the right), they respect you as the leader and will see that you keep them safe from any new threats in the neighbourhood. It sets everything in motion and gives you the chance for a blank slate at the new residence.”

And once you’re all settled in, make sure to create a safe space for your cat or dog, adds Barton.

“When you bring them into the new house, make sure you have their new area set up with their bedding, so they can begin to feel more comfortable with their familiar scents faster.”

 

Article Courtesy of CREB

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Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas


1. Failing to have your real estate associate provide a detailed market analysis of the home’s value.

2. Failing to get an inspection on the property you are purchasing.

3. Not requiring a Real Property Report (RPR) with compliance on the property you are purchasing.

4. Making a low-ball offer and discouraging the seller from negotiating with you.

5. Failing to get pre-qualified for mortgage financing prior to making the offer to purchase.

6. Not allowing enough time to find out all of the important information, such as building inspections, permits, title examinations and any relevant municipal/community information.

7. Neglecting to work with a Buyer’s Associate.

8. Purchasing a For-Sale-By-Owner (FSBO) or other property (ex. new build), without the use of a real estateprofessional and attorney.

9. Purchasing a parcel of real estate without obtaining title insurance.

10. Not obtaining a City Inspection or copies of applicable permits!


Although the list above is not a full and comprehensive list of all pitfalls buyers make when purchasing a home, they arecommon problem areas.  You can avoid dealing with the headaches that arise from overlooking these items by choosing the right REALTOR®. For further explanation of the implications of any of the pitfalls listed in this report, call me.  I would be happy to discuss your specific situation and put you on my customized listing search, so that you can be the first to find out about new listings that match your specific criteria.  If youwould like more information about the process of purchasing real estate, let me know, I would be happy to help you with the process!

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Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas

Although this is not a comprehensive list of everything that needs to be followed when deciding to purchase real estate it is list of important items that we have noticed at CIR REALTY which can play a big role for most buyers. 

Use a REALTOR®!
As members of the National Association of REALTORS® each member adheres to a strict code of ethics that provide a wide variety of benefits for buyers and sellers. Not all real estate agents are members of the National Association of REALTORS®.

Have your REALTOR® provide a detailed price evaluation of the property you are purchasing.
In other words, make sure that you REALTOR® compares the property you are purchasing with other homes in the are that have recently sold. Note: It is more important to examine recently sold properties than the current active listing inventory or expired listings. It is still important to see what other homes are listed for or have been listed which have not sold but you really want to put your infancies on what the other sold listings like the property you are purchasing have sold for. 

Get a home inspection.
Many times buyers will choose to purchase a home without having the home inspected by a qualified professional. Many states if an inspection is performed within a timely manner you can generally ask for the seller to repair or fix the items in question or get an allowance deducted from the price of the home. If it is an issue that cannot be resolved you may even be able to be relieved from your contractual obligations. 

Enter into a buyer’s agency relationship with your REALTOR®.
It is important to understand that agency issues can play a big role in the purchase or sale of a home. By having real estate agent work with you as a buyer’s agent the agent is providing duties of obligations for you the buyer and not the seller or the seller’s agent. Make certain that the real estate professional you have hired has a good clear understanding of buyer’s agency and how it operates before entering into any buyer’s agency contract. 

Put a good deposit.
Often time’s buyers put very little earnest money down when negotiating the purchase of a home unfortunately to the seller it shows little commitment on your part as a buyer to purchase the home. A larger earnest money deposit shows your sincerity and your intent to complete the purchase and can be a big factor in the negotiating of the purchase price. 

Watch important time lines.
With most real estate contracts to purchase real estate documents there are important dates and time lines that must be followed. How quickly the home inspection must be completed when to review the title work, how quickly your loan approval must be met and more. A good buyer’s agent acting on your behalf will follow these guidelines and make sure that you meet each and very time requirement. However, it is also good practice on your part as the buyer to make note of these date and times so that nothing is overlooked or missed. A good example of this might be the date your complete your home inspection, the date to complete all of your mechanical and structural inspections. The contract may provide for you to terminate the transaction if there is a major defect that can not be corrected or fixed. If this inspection is not performed in a timely manner under the dates and times of the sales contract there maybe no remedy depending on the state law to terminate the transaction if your inspection is not done before the proper date and notice provided to the seller or sellers agent. 

Shop around for your home mortgage.
Often buyers will go to only one lender to apply for a home loan before beginning any initial credit reporting or verification or other signed documents with a lender find out what their interest rate, closing cost and other fees are associated with your home mortgage. You can also request that the lender reduce part of the closing cost or ask if any fees are negotiable. Many times lenders fees are not set in stone and can be negotiated or removed from the cost of the loan. For example, some lenders will wave the cost of a credit report or appraisal fee to encourage you to do business with their company or if you credit is good enough and depending on your down payment some lenders may even wave all or part of their origination fees. The important point is for you as a purchaser to ask if any of the costs for the loan can be eliminated or discounted. 

Get a survey.
Most title insurance policies in many states do not cover encroachment or survey boundary problems when they arise. After the closing it is generally too late to get help from the previous owner you purchases the home from unless they knew about it or had reason to believe there was an encroachment. Still it could cost you thousands of dollars in legal fees to correct the problem or seek a realty in the right amount of time. 

Examine your title policy in a timely manner.
Make sure that your buyer’s agent and you review the title policy in a timely manner. As noted in previous bullet points above there are certain dates and time lines that need to be followed to report any objections you might have with something attached to the real estate. Such as a restriction you would not be happy about. 

Make sure the seller provides a detailed disclosure about the property.
Most states now require the sellers to provide comprehensive seller disclosure statements about the real estate they are selling. This can help you as a buyer to determine what or if any problems or issues the sellers have had with the real estate they are conveying. 

Ask the seller for copies of warranties on any appliances or work they have had performed.
It is generally easier for the seller to find this information prior to closing then after the transaction has been completed. So any type of warranty question prior to the sellers receiving their funds to their house is a good idea. 

Take your time before you purchase.
It is always a good idea to look at home some homes before making a purchase decision. Don’t feel as though you have to buy the first home you look at. Comparing the one you are interested with several others can help you in determining if the value is where it should be for the home you would like to purchase. 

Source: John D. Mayfield ABR, ABRM, GRI, e-PRO, CRB

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Data supplied by CREB®’s MLS® System. CREB® is the owner of the copyright in its MLS® System. The Listing data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by CREB®.
The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.
The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS®, and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.