Archive for the ‘Canada Real Estate’ Category

2009 Awards Gala

Monday, April 12th, 2010

I was off to Regina, Sk last week for the annual Century 21 Awards ceremony for Saskatchewan Century 21 Agents. We had some great speakers and a lovely awards ceremony and I was proud to see my fellow Saskatoon realtors(r) winning awards. Approximately 70% of Saskatoon Century 21 Agents won an award and Century 21 Conexus Saskatoon in the Top 10 for all of Canada for production.

It is always exciting to watch my fellow Saskatoon real estate agents winning their awards and being recognized for their hard work and dedication. Our job is much more than just selling houses for sale in Saskatoon, it is a lifestyle. Most people don’t understand the hard work and sacrifice it takes to be a successful real estate agent in Saskatoon or anywhere for that matter. While we don’t get paid by the hour, there are many people who treat realtors (r) in Saskatoon as they do and don’t appreciate the hard work that goes into this lifestyle. They often see that we are driving around Saskatoon and surrounding area in nice vehicles and aren’t stuck in an office all day long. They don’t see the late nights, running out at all hours, missing time with family and friends so that you can ensure you get your clients their dream house for sale in Saskatoon or to ensure our clients selling their homes in Saskatoon get the best offer. Our vehicle IS our office most of the time so it should be nice and comfortable! So thanks to my colleagues dedication and hard work there were many of us who won awards for selling homes for sale in Saskatoon and we beat out much of Canada with our productivity and hard work.

I knew that I was a Century 21 Centurion Award winner but I didn’t know that I was #49 in the company for units sold and #69 in the company for overall production until today. I am an energetic Saskatoon real estate agent who loves what I do so I am proud of my success and proud to be a realtor (r) in Saskatoon. We have a great city with a great energy and I love to call Saskatoon home.

Thank you to all of my clients, friends and family for your support, understanding, and your open ears when I need to vent my frustrations or exlaim my excitement!! I am happy to be a top producing agent in a great company as Century 21 Saskatoon has a strong team of support staff and Saskatoon real estate agents who work as a team even though we are each individuals.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd
Saskatoon, Sk

Province Hits a Record High in Population

Friday, March 26th, 2010

The province of Saskatchewan population has hit an all time high in 2010 with 1,038,018 people living in the province. We have seen an increase of 15760 people since the same time in 2009. The largest factor is the net international migration which was 8571 people. This is the highest number of immigration to Saskatchewan from international areas since records were started in 1946. I have been working with several first time home buyers in Saskatoon who have come from areas like Russia and the Ukraine. They are looking for houses for sale in Saskatoon that will accomodate themselves but also their families at a later date. Some of my first time home buyers in Saskatoon from the Ukraine are bringing over their parents in the next few months.

The only 2 provinces that saw a higher increase in growth were British Columbia and Nunavut. PEI was the only province that saw a loss of people (152 people lost).

With the number of houses for sale in Saskatoon that we started with in January 2009 compared to the number of houses for sale in Saskatoon in January 2010 the net migration is evident here.

It seems people are moving out west as the highest rate of growth was in the four Western Provinces which recorded higher than normal growth, obviously including Saskatchewan.

We welcome these new home buyers in Saskatoon and I look forward to helping more people buy houses for sale in Saskatoon in 2010. Unfortunately, as a realtor (r) in Saskatoon I cannot speak Russian or Ukrainian but I do have some previous clients who have purchased a home for sale in Saskatoon through me who would likely help if needed! I enjoy being a real estate agent in Saskatoon and love helping people find their ‘new’ house in Saskatoon.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd
Saskatoon, Sk

Announcement:Century 21 Saskatoon #1 Firm in Canada since 1995

Thursday, February 18th, 2010

Century 21 Conexus shines again in 2009. We have sold more houses in Canada than any other Century 21 firm since 1995 and since 2006 we have had the highest production in all of Canada. What does this mean? Century 21 Saskatoon realtors(r) are selling more houses than anywhere else in Canada and this hasn’t only been since the Saskatchewan real estate boom as we have been selling more houses in Saskatoon since 1995.

This year our awards gala will be held in Regina on April 6th and Century 21 Conexus Realty from Saskatoon, Regina, Prince Albert and Moose Jaw are the proud recipients of this award.

“It is with great dedication, knowledge and commitment to quality service that CENTURY 21 Conexus Realty Ltd. has so duly earned this recognition. Rod Spence and the CENTURY 21 Conexus Realty Ltd. team are innovators in the real estate industry and this has led this company’s success in the Saskatchewan community,” said Don Lawby, President of Century 21 Canada Limited Partnership. 

“I sincerely congratulate Rod Spence and the entire staff of CENTURY 21 Conexus Realty Ltd. for this well deserved achievement,” adds Lawby.

“CENTURY 21 Conexus Realty Ltd. along with its offices and sales people have received many awards but to achieve the TOP RANKED FIRM in Canada for the 4th consecutive year is an amazing accomplishment and certainly shows the strength of our organization”, says Rod Spence

If you are interested in learning more about Century 21 in Saskatoon or about Saskatoon real estate contact me.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd Saskatoon
653-8222 (offic)

70% of Century 21 Saskatoon Agents Receive Awards for 2009 Production

Thursday, February 4th, 2010

Every Tuesday morning Century 21 real estate agents in Saskatoon get together for our weekly sales meeting to go over recent sales data, recent trends in Saskatoon real estate and just get caught up to date in general on the happenings in the world of fellow realtors(r) in Saskatoon.

Amongst the data last week were the announcements of the awards for production in 2009. I am proud of my fellow Century 21 Real Estate Agents in Saskatoon as 70% of us have been recognized for sales achievements in 2009.

With the slowing of the global markets, 2009 was slower than 2007 and 2008 so it is great to see so many real estate agents with Century 21 in Saskatoon doing so well.

Awards are broken down into 7 categories; Masters Silver, Masters Ruby, Masters Emerald, Masters Diamond, Centurion, Double Centurion and Grand Centurion. I am excited to say that I was awarded the Century 21 Centurion award for the second year in a row. There are 9 of us from our company who achieved Centurion status. Only 1 agent in the company was awarded the Double Centurion and this year we didn’t have any Grand Centurions, but I am sure 2010 may see someone achieve this.

Century 21 agents are also recognized for their donations to charities such as Easter Seals Canada and our Saskatoon real estate agents in Century 21 have been the most generous in the country with fundraising efforts and personal donations. It is a great company with wonderful values and I am a proud Saskatoon Century 21 Realtor(r). We have a great family of agents, managers and support staff.

If you are looking to buy a house in Saskatoon or to sell your house or condo in Saskatoon contact me!

Kari Calder
Residential Real Estate Specialist
Saskatoon Century 21 Conexus

Kari Calder
Saskatoon Real Estate Agent
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd.

Saskatoon Housing Unaffordable?

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

According to the Frontier Centre for Public Policy Saskatoon’s housing market has been deemed seriously unaffordable. We are at a rate of 4.6 (same as 2008) and that rate is on par with Calgary, Edmonton, Hamilton and Montreal.

How they figure this out is by taking the median house price in Saskatoon (the exact mid point between the highest and the lowest priced homes that sold in Saskatoon in the third quarter) and dividing it by the median annual gross income.  The rate means that, to pay of your home purchase in Saskatoon, it would take 4.6 years of your entire salary to pay off a typical Saskatoon home.

This had definitely changed since the Saskatoon real estate boom of 2007, but it has changed across the country. The rate for paying off your house in Saskatoon was 2.0 in 2006, then in 2007 it went up to 2.6, then 3.5 in 2008 and now 4.6 in 2009.

Buying a house in Regina and Winnipeg are the most affordable markets out of the major markets across Canada. Vancouver is the most expensive market out of the 28 measured in Canada but it is also topping the charts out of 272 metropolitan areas in Ireland, the U.K., New Zealand,  Australia, the U.S. and Canada. Victoria was also severely unaffordable at 7.4 but Ottawa is still moderately affordable with a reading of 3.8 up from 3.4 the previous year. I can help put you in touch with a realtor in Regina or any city if you are in need.

Affordability in Alberta homes has improved slightly; Calgary fell from 4.8 to 4.6 this year and Edmonton just slightly from 4.2 to 4.1. On the other side of the country Toronto went from 4.8 to 5.2. So ask yourself, would you rather live in Vancouver, Toronto or Saskatoon as the prices of homes for sale in Saskatoon is still more manageable, as is the commute time and the quality of life. If you are looking to buy a house or condo in Saskatoon contact me. I can set you up with a great Saskatoon mortgage broker or two to get you on your way.

These reports should be taken with a grain of salt however as any statistic should considering they aren’t looking at the entire picture of real estate in Saskatoon or anywhere else. They use limited data with small numbers which can easily be skewed.

Our market is trending towards being more of a sellers market so if you are looking to sell your house in Saskatoon contact me.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd

BOC Interest Rates Unchanged

Thursday, January 21st, 2010

In the news on January 19th, 2010 it was stated that the government will keep the lowest practical rate of 0.25% until at least the middle of 2010.

In Saskatoon real estate we are still seeing a 5 year mortgage around that 3.99% mark which has been fluctuating slightly, but that seems to be a common rate with several lending institutions.

This means that you can still get locked into a 5 year mortgage for a very good rate or wait a few months with an open variable mortgage and then lock in before the rates start increasing, but beware that in 5 years your interest rates may change substantially so be careful to only buy a house in Saskatoon that is within your means and not at the very end of your means if you don’t have a job that will be giving you a raise accordingly! It is generally best to see a mortgage broker in Saskatoon to get the best rates.

As a realtor in Saskatoon I work with many buyers who have mortgage approval for much higher than they spend. I do have clients who do max out with their pre-approved amount, but they generally know that they will have a second income paying for the house (spouse, room mate, etc) or they know that their jobs are secure and their wage will increase.

Economic growth across Canada is still lagging a bit, but it is expected to be higher than originally expected in 2011. Our high Canadian dollar against the US dollar is hampering Canada’s recovery as exports are less desirable.

Saskatoon is always a bit different than the rest of Canada and our listing inventory seems to prove that people are buying houses in Saskatoon and the Saskatoon real estate market has been seeing a recovery.

Contact me if you are looking for a mortgage broker in Saskatoon to get you pre-approved to buy a house in Saskatoon. I have a few great mortgage brokers in Saskatoon who I work with who will get you the best rates and the best mortgage for your needs.

Kari Calder
Residential Real Estate Specialist
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd.

October Homes Sales Busier in 2009 than 2008

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

Homes sales in Saskatoon continued to rise last month with a total of 311 houses selling at an average of just under $275,000. In the same month in 2008 only 213 houses for sale in Saskatoon sold. The average house price in Saskatoon is down from 2008 with that average being $285,547. Keep in mind that the average house price in Saskatoon does not take into factor how many condos vs single family homes have sold, so there are a lot of variables each month. This year an increase in sales of homes between $250,000 and $275,000 has helped contribute to this ‘decline’.
Other good news for the market, but not for some home buyers in Saskatoon, is the listings have now dipped below 1000 for the first time in more than a year. There were 971 homes for sale in Saskatoon this year compared to last year when there were 1667 houses for sale in Saskatoon.
CMHC’s senior market analyst for Saskatchewan, Paul Caton, believes the slower pace of housing activity in 2009 has allowed for a reduction in inventories, setting the stage for an increase in activity in 2010.
CMHC also predicts an increase from 3700 units selling in 2009 to 3900 units in 2010.
For all of you buyer’s who are contemplating waiting to buy a house in Saskatoon, don’t wait too long! We are already experiencing multiple offers on re-sale homes and, while we hope it doesn’t come to ‘presentation of offers’ again where you may be up against as many as 20 other buyers for the same house, it is a possibility.
For all your Saskatoon residential real estate needs, contact your Saskatoon real estate agent, Kari Calder.

Kari Calder
Real Estate Specialist
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd. Saskatoon

First Time Home Buyer Mistakes and How To Avoid Them

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

As a Saskatoon real estate agent, I enjoy working with first time home buyers in Saskatoon. I have a few documents for my first time home buyers in Saskatoon which helps answer questions before they arise and it is always a good thing to come back to when looking to buy a house for sale in Saskatoon and area.
The whole process can feel overwhelming, whether this is the first time you have bought a house for sale in Saskatoon or whether you have bought many homes for sale in Saskatoon.  That is why I am here!
One of the first things to consider and think about is your credit rating.
Most people don’t know their credit rating and a good credit rating will improve your ability to get a loan. If your credit rating needs improvement, you can do things like making sure you always make at least the minimum payments on your credit cards, loans or utilities and pay them in a timely fashion.

Second is being unrealistic about how much you can spend on your new home in Saskatoon and surrounding area. Most people over-estimate how much they can afford to spend. You can go to my website and check out my online mortgage calculator which will help you visualize payment amounts based on house price, how much you are putting down, and mortgage rate/amortization. Be careful with online mortgage pre-qualification as you may forget about something that has affected your credit or about loans.

Third is not considering mortgage pre-approval. You should always go in and meet with a mortgage professional to determine what you are pre-approved for. Knowing how much you can spend gives you confidence to begin looking at homes within your price range. This rate is guaranteed for 90 days, but if it goes down, which we are seeing, you can guarantee the lower rate for another 90 days.

Next is assuming you won’t qualify for a mortgage. Even if you have been bankrupt, been declined in the past, or had other problems, I can put you in touch with some really good mortgage brokers in Saskatoon whoc can shop around to help you get your dream home in Saskatoon by finding alternative mortgage solutions. It may cost you a bit more initially, but once your credit improves the mortgage broker will help you lower your mortgage cost in the future.

Fifth is not knowing all the down-payment options. There are so many different options depending on how much of a down payment you can afford. A conventional mortgage (25%) down, a high ratio mortgage (5% down minimum) or no down-payment (must have a minimum 1.5% value of the home set aside for closing costs as this has to be done in cash).

Sixth is if you are too focused on the interest rate rather than the overall solution. Your future plans will also determine the type of mortgage you go with, so it is important that your mortgage broker know what your plans are and they will help determine what will best suit you, your budget, and your future plans. This includes fixed rate mortgages, variable rate mortgages, and a combination of fixed and variable to benefit from both.

Next is not choosing your own mortgage payments schedule. If you make payments weekly vs monthly, you save a lot of interest in the long term. If you go with a longer amortization period you may have more room to manage your cash flow (ie: 35 years vs 25 years). If you increase your amortization period though you increase your interest costs. You do not have to stick with a 35 year amortization though after your first 5 years are up (if you lock in). Some companies also offer a ‘double up’ program and various other programs to let you put more cash onto your mortgage.

Finally, many first time home buyers in Saskatoon and area forget about closing costs and other non banking details. I work with a lot of first time home buyers so I ensure to coach them on the costs that will occur before possession can happen and those include the closing costs (lawyer fees, land title transfer fees, taxes, etc) There are also other costs such as paying for a professional home inspection, insurance, moving costs, etc.

Owning your own home is a milestone and it is very exciting to purchase your first home. Let me help you in that experience. I can help you find a qualified mortgage specialist who will get you the best rates and deals as well as help you with other professionals along the way.

For your first time home buying in Saskatoon needs, contact me!

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd.
Saskatoon Real Estate Specialist

Home Starts Rebounding Right into 2010

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

According to an article in the Financial Post today, housing starts are expected to continue to rebound in the fourth quarter of 2009 and into 2010 as inventories decline and demand increases.
Home contruction is forecase to reach just under 142,000 homes in 2009 and rise to almost 165,000 in 2010, according to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.
CMHC Chief Economist, Bob Dugan, is optimistic and expects the housing market across Canada to continue to strengthen as the economic conditions continue to improve.
Existing home sales are expected to reach over 441,000 in 2009 and up to over 445,000 in 2010. Average house price is also slated to increase from just under $313,000 in 2009 to $324,500 in 2010.
We are already seeing the rebound in Saskatoon Real Estate with the markets having picked up substantially since July, 2009. If you are looking to buy or sell your house in Saskatoon, contact me for all of your Saskatoon Real Estate needs.

C21-#1 Fundraiser in Canada Award Goes to C21 Saskatoon!

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

I am proud to be one of 62 realtors with Century 21 in Saskatoon! CREA (The Canadian Real Estate Association) has ranked Century 21 Conexus Realty in Saskatoon as the #1 Fundraiser in Canada…since 2004!

What does that mean? That means our company has beat out every other company, organization, etc across the country in our fundraising efforts for EVERY fundraiser held by every real estate organization in the country, for 6 years in a row!

Century 21 in Saskatoon  and the Century 21 realtors in Saskatoon, along with all of the support staff and their families, have raised funds for Easter Seals Camps. In the summer the 24 hour relay raised almost $40,000 and in September the popular “Easter Seals Drop Zone” raised more than $12,000. Realtors in Saskatoon with Century 21 and support staff alike harnessed themselves to the side of a high rise building and rappel downwards. But not this Saskatoon realtor ®. I prefer to stand and cheer on my fellow Saskatoon realtors and our amazing support staff. They support us in our daily jobs but also join in the support to send more than 6000 kids with disabilities annually to camp in 22 locations.

Way to go Century 21 in Saskatoon! If you want to help support Easter Seals then you can buy or sell a house through a Century 21 representitive in Saskatoon.

Kari Calder

Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd.

Residential Real Estate Specialist