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August 21st, 2019 
Cindy Parsons
Sales Representative

Royal Service Real Estate Inc., Brokerage

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Investment in Home Improvement, key in this competitive Market 
For immediate release
Investment in home improvement,
key in competitive housing market, says RE/MAX
Mississauga, ON (September 17, 2008) – An increasingly competitive housing environment is
prompting a significant number of Ontario homeowners to invest in renovation before listing their
homes for sale, according to a recent survey by RE/MAX Ontario-Atlantic Canada.
The RE/MAX Survey of Home Buying and Selling Trends in Ontario, conducted by COMPAS
Research, in the first half of 2008 found 79 per cent of sellers said they made improvements to
their homes two years prior to listing and more than one third (39 per cent) of them did so with
selling in mind. Further indicative of how sophisticated sellers and buyers are becoming, 37 per
cent of sellers made upgrades to their home after listing their property for sale. Home sellers are
typically spending $21,000 on average in renovations; the most popular of which are updating
kitchens, hardwood flooring, and new windows.
“Investing in renovation for the purpose of selling a home continues to grow in 2008,” says Michael
Polzler, Executive Vice President and Regional Director, RE/MAX Ontario-Atlantic Canada.
“Changing market conditions are largely responsible for the upward momentum in residential
investment which is up four per cent to $6.9 billion in Ontario for the first half of this year, compared to
last year at the same time. We are seeing two clear trends emerging with some homeowners looking to
boost resale value by renovating and others choosing to bring their home up to today’s standards by
upgrading areas that are dated. In either case, the end result is a product that will more likely yield top
dollar when it is time to sell.”
Renovations can drastically influence a home’s market value. The RE/MAX Survey found the
wealthiest homeowners (those with an income of $150,000 or more) spent the most on
renovation at $37,663 on average, while those earning under $30,000 spent the least at $8,263.
Renovation costs typically increased with housing values, with the cost of refurbishing a home
priced at $500,000 or more topping out at $55,974.
- more -
RE/MAX Ontario-Atlantic Canada…2
“With buyers visiting an average of nine properties before settling on the one they want to call
their own, sellers need a distinct advantage over the competition,” says Polzler. “Location is still
the primary factor for buyers, but a property’s condition also plays an important role. Our Survey
found properties with updated kitchen cabinetry, hardwood flooring, new windows, an openconcept
and a finished basement appeal most to today’s selective purchaser.”
Most Appealing Upgrades and Gap (Most minus Least)
All Sellers
Most Least Most/Least
Kitchen cabinet upgrade 18 1 +17
Hardwood floor upgrade 11 2 +9
New windows 10 1 +9
Removing walls to create
open-concept living 8 2 +6
Finishing the basement 8 3 +5
Kitchen appliance upgrade 5 2 +3
New shingles 6 3 +3
New bathroom taps and plumbing 4 3 +1
New bathroom tiles 2 1 +1
The RE/MAX Survey of Home Buying and Selling Trends in Ontario surveyed close to 1,000
Ontario home sellers using data provided to COMPAS Research by RE/MAX. Samples of this
size are deemed accurate to approximately three percentage points 19 times out of 20.
RE/MAX is Canada's leading real estate organization with over 17,500 sales associates situated
throughout its more than 640 independently owned and operated offices across the country. The
RE/MAX franchise network, now in its 34th year, is a global real estate system operating in over 65
countries. More than 7,000 independently owned offices engage more than 115,000 member sales
associates who lead the industry in professional designations, experience and production while
providing real estate services in residential, commercial, referral and asset management. For more
information, visit: /> ###
For more information:
Christine Martysiewicz Eva Blay / Melissa Lucas
RE/MAX Ontario-Atlantic Canada Point Blank Communications
905.542.2400 416.781.3911
Bi-weekly and weekly payments 
Most mortgages have the option to allow payments to be made on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. This option may be desirable for two reasons. The first is it can save you money as you can expect to pay off your mortgage about 4 years sooner. This can save you dramatically over the life of your mortgage. The other reason why these options are so popular is that if your employer pays you on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, you can simplify your budgeting by making the payment line up with the way you paid.
Making Extra payments 
Paying extra amounts on your mortgage can make a big interest saving over time. When we select a mortgage company, privilege payments options are something that we look for. A 20% privilege payment will allow you to pay off up to $20,000 per year on a $100 000 mortgage. It is important that the privilege payment also be flexible to allow you to pay smaller payments on the mortgage and as often as you wish. An extra $1000 periodically paid on a mortgage can help you become mortgage free faster.
Reducing the CMHC fees on your purchase 
When you require a mortgage for more than 80% of the purchase price of a property, that mortgage must be insured by Canada Mortgage and Housing (CMHC) or GE Mortgage insurance. The premium charged by these company`s decreases as the down payment increases. When you finance your property at 95%, a premium of 3.75% is added to the mortgage. By increasing the down payment to 10% of the purchase price the premium can be reduced to 2.5%. If you can put down 20%, you can avoid any additional insurance fee. Depending on your situation there are ways that you can structure this financing to avoid the CMHC or GE insurance premium.
Advantages of Bigger Down Payments 
As mentioned above, when you put a 20% down payment on your purchase you can avoid the CMHC premium. More importantly the larger the down payment, the lower the amount of interest you will pay over the life of your mortgage. It is important to note that it may not be wise to stretch yourself to increase your down payment and end up borrowing on credit cards or a line of credit at a higher rate.
Short Term Rates vs. Long Term Rates 
The options for mortgages available can be very confusing for most mortgage shoppers. Terms for mortgages vary between variable and fixed rate, 6-month terms to 10 year terms. Taking a variable or floating rate mortgage can have savings. Typically the shorter the term or guarantee of the rate, the lower the rate will be. This does not always happen, depending on the market place and the economy, but history has shown that short-term rates tend to be lower than long-term rates. The up side of variable rate is the strong potential for interest rate savings. The down side is the fact that you are accepting the interest rate risk without a guarantee. If you are considering a variable rate mortgage you need to look at your own risk tolerance, and your cash flow available to deal with potential increased payment. Considering projections of rates and where we see interest rates heading can also be important in this decision. Make sure you talk to an expert when you are making this decision.
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