Home Values Online

Are home values online any good? 

 I will discuss the 5 reasons why you should avoid getting your Home Values Online in Canada.

  1. Most websites use online Tax assessments values to report estimate on your home value.  Tax assessment is a tool just used for local tax authority to collect taxes for the city.
  2. Most online home evaluation tools don’t even  allow you to input the number of bedrooms, square footage, age, and other details that are important.  So how could any online estimate be accurate without even knowing how many bedrooms your home has?  
  3. Nearby Properties as a comparison - The online searches that pull nearby properties for comparison, just pull everything that sold in that city.   In my example the property I was looking up the online value for a condo that was in a building that is only 8 years old, and the nearby property that the website used as a  compared sold at 320 Royal Ave was 43 year old building. 
  4. Online home evaluations are very inaccurate - look at this comment regarding the  REMAX.ca website home evaluation tool.  “It's not even close to accurate for my neighbourhood in Kelowna. my neighbour just sold for almost $200k above this tools suggested price!”
  5. You will need to sign in more details.  As you can see here most of the important information you want is blocked out.  But once you give up your personal information you will be called continuously by random sales people.   What do I mean by this?  This is big in the US, but it will start to be more common in Canada.  In the real estate business your personal information is called a real estate lead.  Just google “online home values” and you will see many websites offering home evaluations, but their is a tab for real estate agents to sign up.  So whats the kicker here?  The agents who signs up are promised leads and they are trained to call these leads over and over again in an attempt to earn your business.  So the lesson to be learned here is don’t be a lead, and don’t sign up for an online home evaluations because they are very inaccurate.    

So whats the best method to get your homes value.  Don’t be shy, Just contact your local realtor, and they should give you all the proper information.  Neighbourhood statistics ,all the active ,sold and expired comparable properties on the market.  The in-person home evaluation is always better as the realtor can customize the report to match your home.

If you need an in person home evaluation please feel free to reach out to me.   

Question of the day, what do you think of getting home values online?  Please leave it in the comments below. I will try my best to personally answer all comments myself.     

As always please like, share and become smart savvy consumer.  I make educational content every Tuesday and videos every Friday.

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Selling in a Buyers Market

If you are thinking of selling your home during a buyers market you should know what to expect.  

In a typical sellers market, you could sell a home in one weekend with multiple offers and receive  an offer over your asking price.  But in a buyers market when you have plenty of homes and fewer buyers the tables have turned.  In this video I will discuss 4 things your should expect if your selling during a buyers market.  

#1. Low ball offers - Sellers in soft markets lose equity. Less overall demand for homes puts pressure on sales prices, causing buyers to make lowball offers.

#2. Less Activity - less viewings brings about less offers for your home.  It is important to be patient and understand that it will take longer to sell your home, 3 - 6 months is the norm in a buyers market.  

#3.   Buyers demand repairs - Buyers demand homes in good condition.  In most cases the buyers will perform a home inspection of your home, and may have a list of repair recommended by their home inspector.  In a buyers market the buyers may demand that the seller pay for these repairs or perform them before completion. 

#4.  Subject to sale clauses:  Not every buyer is a first time home buyer, or a new immigrant.  Most buyers need to sell their own home before they can purchase yours.   If a buyer's home does not sell, neither will the seller's and by that time, the number of buyers typically dwindle even more.

So there you have it the 4 things you should expect when selling your home during a buyers market.  If you have any questions please reach out to me.  

If you are thinking of selling view my playlist of videos here or reach out to my for a free home evaluation. 

Question of the day, would you sell during a buyers market?  Yes or No  Please leave it in the comments below. I will try my best to personally answer all comments myself.     

As always please like, share and subscribe and become smart savvy consumer.  I make educational videos every Tuesday and videos every Friday.  This is Alex from Vancouver and Thank you so much for watching this video eh?  

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Realtor Tricks to watch out for

Every industry has its tricks.  Wanna know a few realtor tricks? 

The real estate industry has many tricks.  It is important to know these tricks, and how they may influence your decision as a buyer or seller.  In this video I will discuss 4 tricks that should be disclosed when working with a realtor. 

#1. Property Dimensions:  Property dimensions are always approximate.  And this is indicated in small print in all realtor advertising.  Nothing is stopping a realtor from approximating these dimensions.  Realtors can easily market say a 960 square foot condo for 1000 square feet.  This is great for sellers but bad for buyers.  I recommend referencing the strata plan for condos, and the building plans if you are purchasing a house. 

#2. Number of Bedrooms - a defined as a bedroom is defined a a room with 4 walls, a closet and a window.  Even though you may not care if that den is labelled a bedroom, you should care when it is time for you to sell that home.  The number of real bedrooms will affect your homes value.   

#3. Days on the market - Buyers typically at this stat.  This stat indicates how long the home has been on the market.  The lower the days on the market the better it is in the buyers perspective.  If the Days on the market is greater than 30 days the buyers may feel that their is something wrong with the home and may shy away from viewing or writing an offer. 

The seller and the realtor may decide to remove the property off the market.  This would reset the days on the market back to zero so looking at days on the market is not an accurate figure.  I would recommend looking at the property history on MULTIPLE LISTING SERVICE  versus days on the market. 

#4.  Price- Like days on the market,  buyers like to ask if the home has had any price reductions.   

Their is nothing is stopping a realtor to list a home at 1.5 million and drop it to 1 million the next week.  This makes it appear that a great deal can be had by the buyer.  But the fact is that the price can be changed at anytime with the permission of the seller.  It is always wise to look at the price history of the property and how it relates to market prices in the neighbourhood. 

So there you have it the 4 realtor tricks you should know about if you are buying or selling real estate.  If you have any questions please reach out to me.  

Question of the day, what realtor trick do you come across that I didn’t mention?  Please leave it in the comments below. I will try my best to personally answer all comments myself.     

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Selling a house with a mortgage

If you are thinking of selling your home and you have a mortgage you have four options to think about.  I would recommend checking with your banker and looking at the mortgage documents to find the information you need before planning purchasing your next property. 

Option #1. What is the penalty for terminating your mortgage early?  Usually this is 3 months interest penalty or the interest rate differential which ever is greater.  But the truth is most consumers don’t know what the IRD is and how it is calculated.  The IRD is calculated by taking the difference of contracted mortgage rate and the current market mortgage rate multiplied by the amount of years remaining times your mortgage balance. 

For example if you owe $300,000 with 3 years remaining, and a IRD of 1.44% that would be a penalty of $12,960 which is far greater than 3 months interest penalty.    If the penalty is this big maybe also ask your lender if this penalty can be rolled into your new mortgage. 

Option #2. Can this mortgage be moved to another property?   If you look at your mortgage contract look for the term portable or portability.   If you have this term it indicates that you can move your current mortgage to another property.  

Option #3. Can you have a blended rate?  In most cases if you are upgrading your current home to another home, you may need to borrow more money.  If this is the case ask if you can instead carry on with your current mortgage and have the additional money borrowed at a different rate.  Or if you can re-structure to get a brand new mortgage with a blended rate to avoid paying any mortgage penalties.  

Option #4. Find out from your lender what your maximum mortgage would be if you sold your property to buy an new one.  

So there you have it the 4 options I would look at if I were looking to sell my home which has a mortgage.   If you have any questions please reach out to me.  

If you are thinking of selling view my playlist of videos here or reach out to my for a free home evaluation. 

Question of the day, would you consider breaking your mortgage early to sell your home?  Yes or No  Please leave it in the comments below. I will try my best to personally answer all comments myself.     

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Home home price reduction strategy

Is your home not selling?  Maybe its priced too high? Thats what I am going to talk about right now. 

As you know the Vancouver market has just shifted from a sellers market to a buyers market.   In a sellers market you would price your home at or above the most recent sold.  But when we are in a buyers market the opposite should be in effect.  When the markets shift so should your pricing strategy.  Pricing your home is pivotal to your home selling success.  In this video I talk about the strategy I would use to reduce your homes price.

First Ask yourself the following 4 questions.   

#1. How long have your been on the market?  You should be getting your most amount of viewing activity within the first 2 weeks of your property being available.  In most cases if it is priced properly it would have already been sold.  If your home has been on the market for over 3 months without any changes you will be risking that your property will look stale in the eyes of the buyers.  

#2. How many viewings are you currently getting per week?  On a well priced property on average your realtor should be showing your property about 3 times minimum per week.  The realtor should also be getting about 10 inquiries per week.  

#3 How does your homes price really compare to your competition?  Did you price your home based on recently sold comparable properties, or what the current active properties are sitting at?  Remember, buying in addition to selling is competitive.  Especially when down the street there is a similar home on the market for much less.  Your neighbourhood and home type may only yield a few buyers per month. So its essential to price your home to beat out your competition.  

#4 How bad do you really need to sell?  Markets are always up or down.  Only you will know if its truly the right time in your life to sell.  Remember you can never time the real estate market.  When markets begin to fall they can fall really fast.  

So now what??  whats the prescription to your home pricing headache?   If your home is priced under $1 million I would recommend that you do price reduction increments of $50,000 per week until you get 3-5 viewings per week.  On homes over 1 million the price reduction would be $100k per week.    Remember during a falling market you need to beat out your neighbours and sell fast.

There you have it the price reduction strategy I would use if you decided it was time to finally sell your home .   If you have any questions please reach out to me.  If you are thinking of selling view my playlist of videos here or reach out to my for a home evaluation.  

Question of the day, would you consider using your reducing the price of your home?  Yes or No  Please leave it in the comments below. I will try my best to personally answer all comments myself.     

As always please like, share and subscribe and become smart savvy consumer.  I make educational videos every Tuesday and videos every Friday.  This is Alex from Vancouver and Thank you so much for watching this video eh?  

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Realtor Commission Rates Explained

Real Estate Professionals get paid on a commission split when a property sells you maybe surprised how much they can make off the sale of your home. 


Gross Commission (Based upon selling $600,000 Home)

Full service traditional Realtors charge  7% 1rst 100k and 2.5% on Balance .  The gross agent commission paid to the brokerage would be $19,500.  Realtors who are self employed with their brokerage pay a deal fee or percentage slip of the commission. 


Marketing Expenses

Think of your home like a product, you need to market it to sell it. Some products require different marketing than others.  This stays true for your home as well. Some homes may require a significant amount of marketing and resources while others may require very little.  Market statistics don't lie, ask your Realtor to bring them along, or even have a few realtors bring you some market data so that you can verify all the facts. If the majority of homes sell with marketing on realtor.ca only, then why even use the other forms of marketing?

Internet Marketing $150
Flyers $100
Gas $100


subtotal: $350


Average Days of the market for a sale at 90 Days 

Open houses = 16 hours

Contracts/Closing = 6 hours
Showings =8 hours
Research= 3 hours
Staging = 5 hours


Total 38 Hours


Calculating How Much Realtor Fees Paid By Hour

$19,500 - $250- $350 / 38 hours

= *$497 per hour with one agent 
= *$248.68 per hour with commission split 2 agent


*If property does not sell, the seller pays the Realtor zero dollars.


All marketing costs and time are not reinbursed by the Seller. 

Selling your home is one of your largest financial transactions, you must find a Realtor your can trust. Commissions may seem to be high, but in reality when you break down the commissions charged for Realtors here in BC, Realtors don't actually get paid very much money. One must also consider the same output of hours for properties that don't end up selling. Currently the active to sales ratio is 40% for detached homes which means approx 60% percent of the homes marketed are not sold. The next time you think a realtor in BC makes alot of money, just read this post or forward this to a friend.

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