Toronto Income Property Newsletter – April 2010

Spring is here. This is traditionally our busiest time of the year as folks start making their real estate moves so that they can be situated by the end of the summer. Since the income property market was so robust in the first quarter of 2010, I can only predict that the demand and excitement for these kinds of properties will continue unabated for some months to come. Interest rates will be rising soon, so that ought to eventually slow things down a little. As always, if you have any market or investment questions, please feel free to reach out to me at any time. It would be my pleasure to help you out in any way possible.

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There has been a lot of press lately about current real estate practices and how agents go about servicing the public. In case you haven’t heard, the Canadian Competition Bureau is looking into how the Canadian Real Estate Association has a “monopoly” on the MLS data that we use to share information with each other about properties. Critics are crying out that the system should be opened up to the public so that you are not forced to pay high commissions by having to use a realtor. This is a very interesting debate that will rage on for quite some time to come. I’m all for allowing public access to MLS data, provided there are checks and balances in place to ensure the data’s accuracy and integrity. It’s a problem we face now without opening the data up to an inexperienced public. I don’t think the real issue that upsets most folks is about sharing the MLS anyway. I think that it is more so about how certain real estate practices may not always be in the best interest of the general public, and obviously this has to change.

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There has been some confusion with respect to the HST that will arrive in July. Here are the main guidelines:

i. HST will come into effect on July 1st, 2010

ii. HST will not apply on the purchase price of resale homes

ii. HST will apply on services such as moving costs, home inspections, lawyers fees and real estate commissions

iii. HST will apply to the purchase of newly constructed homes. Homes under $400,000 may be eligible for certain rebates from the province

Enjoy the warm weather folks and go TFC go!

P.A.

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