Category Archives: BUYING

Buying property

Tarion Warranty Protection: What you need to know

Tarion Home Protection: The Full Scope

Tarion Home Protection: The Full Scope

When people buy a new home, they want to have confidence that it has been built well and according to the standards set by law. Tarion Warranty Corporation is a private corporation that regulates new home builders and protects the rights of new home purchasers through the Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act. With tens of thousands of houses and condominiums sprouting up across the province every year, especially in Toronto, it is important to be aware of the protection entitled to new homebuyers.

Builder Licensing

One of the major responsibilities handled by Tarion is the licensing of all new home and condominium builders in Ontario, ensuring builders have the technical experience, customer service capacities and financial stability to perform their job. Consumers are advised to do as much research as possible prior to the purchase of a new home and Tarion has helped make this a little easier through the publicly-accessible Ontario Builder Directory. The Directory provides important information about new home builders including whether they are licensed, how many homes they have built and whether Tarion has had to resolve warranty claims on their behalf. It also shows builders who have had their license refused or revoked.

Warranty Coverage

In addition to licensing builders and maintaining the builder directory, Tarion protects new homebuyers with mandatory warranty coverage. The coverage begins even before homeowners move into their new homes with deposit protection, delayed closing coverage and protection against financial losses for contract homes.

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Choose a Location for a New Home: Some factors to consider

How to choose a location for a new Home

Whether you are purchasing your home as an investment, a lifestyle upgrade or both, one of the most important decisions you will make is where you want to live. Your home’s location will help determine not only the future value of your investment, but also many aspects of your everyday life. This article is designed to educate you on how to choose a location for a new home. Here are some factors you should consider carefully when selecting a location.

Geographic Location
The part of the country you choose to live in will have a major impact on your lifestyle. Particularly if you want to stay in your home for a long time, make this decision very carefully, taking into consideration the factors that are most important to you, like average home prices in the area, job opportunities in your field, proximity to loved ones and climate.

City vs. Suburb vs. Rural
The setting you choose within the city or town you select will affect the amount of peace and quiet you have, lot size (if you’re buying a house), primary and secondary education options for your children, proximity to shopping, entertainment, medical services and anything else you might want or need, and more. For more information on this topic, please read my article on Country or City Living.

Within a particular area, different neighbourhoods will have different characteristics. You’ll want to pick the one that is the closest fit to your lifestyle and personality – a place where you’ll feel comfortable and where you are likely to get along with your neighbours. You’ll also want to try to live close to the places you visit frequently, like grocery stores, your job, and, if you have kids, the schools you want them to attend. My article titled “Neighbourhood Mistakes” speaks more about this topic in depth.

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A Comprehensive Guide to buying a new home in Ontario

So you’re thinking about buying a new home?

Buying a new home-Read our guide

Download buying a new home in Ontario – comprehensive guide

One attractive option are buying new houses in suburban areas that offer bigger living spaces. Another option are buying new condos and townhouses in urban centers close to amenities, transportation and entertainment. Many buyers find buying new homes appealing because it gives you the ability to choose custom finishing’s. And let’s not forget everything will be brand new!

This guide will provide you a comprehensive overview about what to consider and how to protect yourself if you are planning to buy a newly built house or condo.

It will show you:

a) what protections you have under Ontario law when buying a new home
b) what overlooked details to check out that can save you thousands of dollars down the road
c) how to avoid paying extra condo fees
and much more!

If you have any questions about buying a new home, house or condo, I’m happy to help. Call Sam Marji, your trusted real estate adviser at 647- 220-9588.

Download buying a new home in Ontario – comprehensive guide

Stop paying rent

How to decide if you should rent or buy

How to decide if you should rent or buy


Renting is a huge business in the greater Toronto area. If you currently rent, you know that paying out those hundreds of dollars every month to line the pockets of your landlord is not a pleasant task. However, like most renters you probably feel stuck in a home that isn’t even yours simply because you can’t save up that down payment for your own home.

This article contains explains whether you should rent or buy. It shows you how you can stop paying rent and start contributing to your own financial future, rather than that of your landlord. By having some valuable information about the real estate industry, as well as some tips and tricks about property ownership, you’ll be able to start on the road from renting to owning. After reading this article, my goal is that you will learn the following:

1. Save for a down payment for your property
2. Make best use of your financial institution, and other loan sources
3. Consider reversing the rental roles

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What is a Meth House?

Are You About To Buy A Former Meth Lab?

Shopping for a good home can be difficult enough when simply considering the location. You may worry about additional factors such as the type of neighbors you’ll have or the quality of the school your children might attend.

One important factor that is often overlooked is the history of the home in question and whether it may pose as a problem.

Before you prepare to buy a home, this is one question you will definitely want to know the answer to.

“Am I Buying A Home That Was a Former Meth Lab?”

You may look at the house and not see any apparent clues that anyone ever produced methamphetamines there. It could be that you have no idea what signs to even look for.

I was recently contacted by an associate from,based out of Jensen Beach, Florida, who was generous enough to provide me with a visual graphic of the telltale signs of former meth labs.

12 Keys Rehab created this graphic as a guide:

Signs your house was a former meth lab

Signs your house was a former meth lab

Is Your Home a Former Meth House? by 12 Keys Rehab

Where Can I find a Home Inspector?

What quality of work to look for in the best home inspector?

What quality of work to look for in the best home inspector?

Home inspection represents a key piece of the home-buying process. A home inspector provides an expert eye that gives an invaluable assessment of the biggest investment a buyer will make.

The best home inspector can ease the process and make sure there’s no surprises. A bad home inspector can jeopardize a sale, hurting both sides of the real estate equation.

Here are a few ways to protect yourself against an unqualified home inspector.

1. A lot of information about inspections aims at buyers, but they can help sellers. You may even want to invest in an inspection before you put the home on the market, so you can fix potential issues, adjust the price point, or know what to expect at the negotiating table. Remember to prep as much as you can to make the inspector’s job easier.

2. When hiring a home inspector, make sure the person doing the inspection is recommended by a reliable source. You can consult the Better Business Bureau in your municipality or the Ontario Association of Home Inspectors to find a professional home inspector in your area. Ask friends and relatives who recently bought for recommendations. Your real estate agent might have someone they trust as well.

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The Mistakes We make when selecting a neighbourhood

Questions to ask to avoid mistakes choosing the wrong neighbourhood

Questions to ask to avoid mistakes choosing the wrong neighbourhood

What made you choose the neighbourhood you’re in right now? Did you like how close it was to your job, or was it close to a major transportation hub? Were you drawn in by how many families live on the block, or did you love how many young professionals lived in the area? We all have different reasons for why we choose where we live today, but some of them may not have been good ones. Some people claim that their neighbourhood just “felt right,” but choosing your next living location based on how you feel isn’t very smart. Here’s how to avoid mistakes when choosing a neighbourhood.

You have found a house that you are absolutely in love with. It’s everything you’ve ever dreamed of and it’s close to your friends, but there are a few small things. The neighbourhood has a slightly high crime rate, traffic can be a nightmare, but you are just so in love with the house! Don’t make the mistake of ignoring some of those glaring problems. Eventually the newness and novelty of your new home will wear off, and those “minor” problems will start to seem much bigger.

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City vs Country – Which is the Better Place to Live?

City vs country - what to consider when deciding what is best for you

City vs country – what to consider when deciding what is best for you

It’s been a much heated issue for some time, whether to live in the city or head out to the suburbs. Depending on your age and where you are in your life, this decision can be an easy one, or it can be quite difficult. When you are in your 20s, kids, a house and a daily minivan commute into the city for work is probably the furthest thing from your mind.

Often when first buying into the market, one is single and think “location, location, location.” The lure of the city with its convenient public transportation, nightlife and employment opportunities are overpowering.

The challenge is that location and budget do not align. Your precious dollars will only stretch so far in the city and compromise tends to be the final factor in your decision.

Your dream home with a garden may require your dream location to take a back seat. Or your dream location may translate into a cozy dwelling in the sky, where personal space is your sacrifice.

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Where Can I go to fix my Bad Credit?

Bad Credit is Not the End of the World

Purchase options available to you if you have bad credit

Buying real estate with bad credit is not the end of the world, it just requires a carefully thought out plan by the investor and their mortgage agent.

Here are some common investment strategies for those who have sufficient capital to make a down payment and/or service the mortgage payments, but have damaged credit.

1. Buy owner-occupied properties with income suites

This investment strategy is great for new investors with damaged credit to build a real estate portfolio. Because these properties are partially occupied, the borrower can qualify for owner-occupied mortgages up to 90% of the property’s appraised value. Today there are more lending options for the self-employed and in the sub-prime mortgage market, which reduces the need for private financing.

These are typically residential dwellings – some are single-family dwellings with legal basement suites or multi-units up to four-plex¬es and may include vacation properties that you can rent during the different seasons.

As an owner-occupier, you have the option to convert part of the property for rental use as your credit improves. This allows you to take advantage of widely available insured renovation mortgage programs.

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What are the risks associated with investing in Commercial Real Estate?

Steps to take to choose a commercial property for long-term investment

Steps to take to choose a commercial property for long-term investment

Many investors get started by investing in the residential market probably because it is familiar and easily understood. After all, many of us own our own homes and have seen equity build-up and mortgage pay-down firsthand.

With a good system for locating and analyzing residential real estate and with the help of experienced and reputable property managers this can be a good way to create long-term, sustainable wealth. However, achieving your personal goals and growing your portfolio sometimes means stepping outside of your comfort zone. For some of you, this translates into adding commercial property to your portfolio.

Entering the commercial market can be a great way to diversify and exponentially grow your real estate holdings. Many investors stay on the sidelines because of fear or a lack of understanding of the commercial market.

They may also be bogged down by limiting beliefs: “I don’t have enough money to get into commercial real estate”; “I don’t have a team in place to handle a larger investment”; and “the commercial market is too complicated for me.”

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