News & Press

Real estate commissions: What does it cost and who really pays?

July 18, 2017


The real estate industry operates on being paid only upon a successful result. This means that if your property does not sell or close, you do not pay.

The fact that the fees associated with real estate are based on this contingency is good for consumers. But does this mean that a successful seller pays for the collective work done by real estate agents in all of those unsuccessful transactions? This may be a reason why fees have hovered around 5% for some time now, even as house prices have escalated tremendously over the past 20 years. I guess the real question is what is a fair fee to pay for a successful real estate transaction and how does it all work in paying for the services of both the sellers’ agent and the buyers’ agent?

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Why smart money is still investing in Canadian houses: Don Pittis

June 30, 2017

Don Pittis · The Business Unit · CBC News

Sorry, young house hunters. It turns out the overpriced home you were hoping to buy isn’t just a place to live.

Now, maybe more than ever, houses are a financial investment.

And while that may not be good for young Canadians hoping to get into the market, there are no signs new government rules will change that in the short term.

In fact, a new flood of money into the global economy from central banks in an attempt to counteract the depressing effect ot the Brexit vote only makes putting cash into real estate a sounder financial investment.

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Pre-construction condos: Should you use a realtor?

December 29, 2016


Should you use a realtor when buying a new pre-construction condo?

The answer for this is a definite YES. Toronto realtor Matt Smith, who specializes in helping buyers navigate through the complicated process of buying new condos, has shared with me the many pitfalls and disadvantages of buyers going it alone when dealing with the builders’ sales staff.

Above all else, realize that the builder’s sales team works for the builder and only the builder. That is where their loyalties lie. They simply have zero interest in protecting you or your rights, or in getting you the best deal or best location within the building. By using your own real estate agent, you get the advantages of comparative shopping as well as their specialized knowledge of these complicated transactions, which can potentially save you both legal and financial problems and surprises down the road. It is important to declare and introduce your realtor with the builder when you register as a client at the new condo site.

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Opinion: Gentrification helps everyone, be it in St-Henri, HoMa or elsewhere..

December 29, 2016


In recent months, some shops in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve and St-Henri have been vandalized and looted. The apparent motivation behind these criminal acts was to denounce gentrification — the process by which run-down areas are renovated by middle-class families and young professionals who move in.

The fear is that as this happens, poorer individuals will be displaced. In fact, though, gentrification is a tool for improving the living standards of everyone, including the poor.

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New mortgage rules will ‘reduce the risk’ a housing crash poses to Canada’s economy.

October 07, 2016

Gordon Isfeld | October 3, 2016 |


OTTAWA — Canada’s finance minister believes the housing market remains hot, but healthy. It just needs a little more regulatory care to keep it that way and not harm the economy in the process.

For now, Bill Morneau’s prescription calls for some gentle adjusting of existing rules — like closing a tax loophole on non-resident real estate investors — along with new measures, such as a mortgage-rate “stress test” to ensure hopeful buyers can afford to get into the market in the first place and meet their payments when lending levels begin to rise.

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