Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Busy Month of August in Saskatoon Real Estate!

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

August was a busy month in the Saskatoon real estate community. There were 415 houses or condos in Saskatoon that sold which is up from 311 the year before. Our year to date sales in the Saskatoon real estate market is also up 12% to 2819 with the average days on market in Saskatoon being 38 days. The most active price range of houses for sale in Saskatoon continues to be the $300,000 to $350,000. If you are thinking of selling your house contact me as I would love to help you sell your house in Saskatoon or surrounding area.

Average house price in Saskatoon is also up from last year but the monthly average house price can be deceiving as we take the total number of sales divided into the total value and if there were more high end homes in that month the average house price in Saskatoon would appear to be higher than a month when more lower end homes sold.

We also listed fewer properties for sale in Saskatoon in August from the previous year with 629 new listings but overall we are up 3% from the yeaer before. There are less houses available to potential consumers than last year. I just listed a great house for sale in Hudson Bay Park and am hoping to have an offer sorted out on it shortly!

Activity is also picking up in the areas around Saskatoon such as Martensville, Warman, Osler, etc with the sales increasing 31% from last August’s number and the average days on market is 55 days for these areas.

It is forecasted that interest rates will remain unchanged for the time being which means it is a great time to buy a house for sale in Saskatoon and it is forecasted that we will have a good balanced market for the remainder of 2011 meaning prices should stay level to a slight increase depending on demand.

If you are looking to buy a house in Saskatoon and you need a good Saskatoon realtor to help you out please contact me and I would love to help you purchase a home for sale in or around Saskatoon.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Fusion

Saskatoon-High in Crime? Good Job CBC!

Saturday, August 6th, 2011

I love how, right on the heels of an article that people in Saskatchewan have a cheery outlook on our economy and that Saskatchewan’s economy will be doing better than the national average, CBC prints news that we have the highest overall crime rate (and of course Winnipeg as their economic forecast is also pretty good!)

It seems to happen often like this. One article will bring people looking for job opportunities in Saskatoon or Saskatchewan and as a result the newsmakers will print a downer article to make people question if their lives are at stake if they come to Saskatchewan!? Maybe I am just jaded about the news industry, but I see it happen quite often so I don’t think it is a mere coincidence. CBC writers who are more than likely not from Saskatchewan?

What they always fail to mention about our crime statistics and and number of murders is that they are typically gang related and happen in the core neighbourhoods so 95% of the population is not affected by it. I have had people looking to buy houses for sale in Saskatoon who were worried because of ‘news’ like this. I am always sure to take them into the areas they will want to avoid. They are small and people should not lump in the rest of the west side of Saskatoon as there are loads of beautiful neighbourhoods on Saskatoon’s west side.

This map of murders though shows a more accurate story,-106.675694&spn=0.072763,0.153714&source=embed 

Saskatoon, and Saskatchewan in general, is one of the leading markets for economy, real estate, etc so it isn’t surprising that we also get negative publicity. I have certainly lived and traveled in scarier places in the world so take what you read with a grain of salt…as always! Saskatoon real estate is still a great investment and will continue to be so in the future in my opinion.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Fusion

Century 21 Conexus Changed to Century 21 Fusion

Friday, July 22nd, 2011

I should write about a change in Century 21 Saskatoon that took place on July 1. We went from working under a bank, Conexus Credit Union, to becoming owned by Saskatoon real estate agents in less than a month. This was a good move for everyone I feel. We had our hands tied with the beauracracy of working under a banking system since I became a real estate agent in Saskatoon over 4 years ago. Conexus has now, I believe, sold off all of the Century 21 franchises across Saskatchewan.

Three Saskatoon real estate agents (and 1 spouse) purchased the Century 21 Saskatoon franchise and we are now called Century 21 Fusion. We take pride in advancing with technology while excelling at Saskatoon real estate sales. Gary Busch and Barry & Sandy Chilliak are the new agent/owners of Century 21 Saskatoon (Century 21 Fusion).

Some people ask me if it is a conflict of interest to have our Saskatoon real estate company owned by realtors in Saskatoon but little do they know Century 21 was one of the only ones that was not owned by Saskatoon real estate agents. So, is it a conflict of interest? Only if the owners are cherry picking the best listings when people call our company and are looking for a Saskatoon real estate agent to list their home for sale in Saskatoon.

Do I mind? If I minded I would have packed up my bags and left! With my 4 year annivesary having just passed as being a Realtor in Saskatoon I have not wavered from Century 21 Saskatoon as I enjoy my colleagues and I see the advantage of working with such a cohesive company. We have different things to offer than other brokerages in Saskatoon so I’m proudly sticking with them.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Fusion

Who Really Wins in a Messy Divorce?

Thursday, July 21st, 2011

Buying lottery tickets in Saskatoon with the aim to win the largest prize of all, the Lottery Showhome, is commonplace in Saskatoon and we have many opportunities every year. The Lottery Showhomes, typically located at the presitgious Saskatoon Willows Golf Course and subdivision, are always stunning and jam packed with hopeful ticket buyers. It all goes to a good cause with proceeds going to various charity organizations.

A recent CBC story about previous Lottery showhome winners really struck close to home as I was personally involved in the attempt to sell the home that was the centre of a long dispute between an estranged husband and wife. CBC news reported that my 1/2 of the sellers won the battle but it would be hard to say anyone ‘won’ in this case. Knowing my client as I do and the relationship he has with his boys I am happy it has all worked out for him but the expense and more importantly the time spent fighting is something they can’t get back.

Often when we see Saskatoon houses for sale they are the result of something negative like a separation, divorce, death, etc. Always a nice change when I meet sellers of Saskatoon homes who are selling their home in Saskatoon because they are combining households with marriage. Unfortunately though divorce definitely keeps the Saskatoon real estate market, and any other market in north america for sure, busy.

Moral of the story; money doesn’t buy happiness. Having a house is not necessarily having a home.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Fusion

Iconic Stone House Demolished

Monday, May 9th, 2011

Make way for more condos for sale in Saskatoon’s east side as the iconic stone house on the corner of Clarence and College was demolished this week.

The owner is considering a lawsuit against the city. The City, along with the new owner of the property Remai Ventures Inc, made the decision to demolish the house this past week. Claiming the ground had softened and causing the house to lean it was considered a liability and there was no indication as to when it would be moved so the decision was made. A moving company lifted the home six weeks prior but due to the house not conforming with the neighbourhood in which it was intended to be moved to, the city denied the move. The second location chosen by the owner was impossible for now due to low lying power lines and washed out roads.

Two adjacent properties were pillaged by Habitat for Humanity for reusable items before the demolition. The owner is very discouraged and claims that the home was renovated in 2006 and is upset about the environmental impact and felt it could have been given to help with the homeless people or people in need.

As a Saskatoon real estate agent I drive the city everyday and drive by this home many times a week and I, for one, felt this structure was an eyesore and I am happy to see it gone. It was a unique home in Saskatoon for sure but not an attractive one!

Now there will be new condos for sale in Saskatoon once these east side units are built. Currently there are other condos for sale near the U of S and the prices reflect their high end nature so I am very curious to see what these ones will be like. Location location location!

If you are looking for a condo for sale in Saskatoon contact me as I help many people buy condos for sale in Saskatoon every year and am very familiar with the Saskatoon real estate market.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd
Saskatoon, Sk

February Saskatoon Real Estate Update

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

The Saskatoon real estate market has been a busy one in February. MLS sales are up 22% from 2010 while listings are only up 9% from 2010. The most active price range of houses for sale in Saskatoon last month was $250,000-$275,000 which indicates the entry level homes are the hottest commodity right now. With the changes in mortgage rules that does not surprise many of us.

The average price for Saskatoon homes for sale is almost the same as 2010 and the overall average house price in Saskatoon is up 4% from last year at this time.

Optimism in Saskatoon’s economy remains high and this is seen by the amount of people expressing interest in moving here from other provinces, renters wanting to purchase a house or a condo for sale in Saskatoon and existing Saskatoon home owners moving up. Job creation in Saskatoon remains steady so the forecast for the rest of 2011 is for a balanced market and resale prices to increase slightly due to demand.

If you are waiting to buy a home for sale in Saskatoon and hopeing for ‘prices to go down’ this doesn’t appear to be happening any time soon. A steady increase seems most likely so instead of paying 100% interest by renting in Saskatoon you may want to talk to your local Saskatoon mortgage broker or Saskatoon Realtor (R) to discuss how to get started in the Saskatoon real estate market. If you are a first time buyer in Saskatoon and don’t know where to start I can help you with the entire process.

Kari Calder
CENTURY 21 Conexus Realty Ltd.

Interest Rates Have Gone Up

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

We have had some warnings the past few days that rate hikes were coming and I just got confirmation from Centum Canada Mortgages (the Century 21 affiliated mortgage brokers) that rates have indeed gone up to 3.79 for a 5 year term. If you are thinking about buying a house for sale in Saskatoon it doesn’t hurt to get your rate locked in and held.

The alarm was sounded on Monday by Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney as household debt has reached an all time high. These low interest rates are not here forever so he warns that we need to be more cautious. The tone indicates that he may be setting the stage for a rate increase next year.

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty says they will keep tightening mortgage lending rules as needed to keep credit growth in check.

As a Saskatoon Real Estate Agent I think it is great to take advantage of the current low rates to build your retirement portfolio and to get started in the Saskatoon real estate market but only if you feel secure in your job and in your earning potential as when it comes time to renew your mortgage after 5 years and you have been living close to your means or slightly above your means those rate changes will have a huge and sometimes life changing affect on you. Some people are forced to sell while others just look at different options like getting a room mate or a boarder. If you are thinking of putting your Saskatoon house for sale let me know.

There are other risks in our economy and the high dollar is not helping the Canadian economy. As consumers we like it (especially with the Saskatoon winter we are experiencing it is nice to vacation in the southern US with the dollar being at par!) Debt worries in Europe also affect us here so rate hikes may be held off according to some analysts as they believe there are bigger fish to fry.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd
Saskatoon, SK

City Budget-Here Come the Taxes :-(

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

As the city of Saskatoon continues to grow so do the expenses as we saw in the latest Saskatoon Star Phoenix update today. Thankfully council members were not happy with the proposed 4.65% increase in property taxes, instead it will be 3.99%. As it is there are already households in the city who have property taxes upwards of $10,000!?! For my career as a Saskatoon Real Estate agent I get to hear about the already expensive taxes compared to many other cities across Canada.

This reduction in property tax increase does not come without taking it from elsewhere. The Saskatoon City Police are being asked for $150,000 to be trimmed from their budget. If this does not happen the property tax increase will be 4.1%. Sometimes it feels that Saskatoon home owners are penalized but we also have to think about the trickle down effect. If someone owns a Saskatoon revenue house and their taxes go up I would assume the rent would also go up to reflect this inflation.  

As a Saskatoon real estate agent I am curious to see how much they spend on the 25th and Idylwyld project as this was under fire all night. Does it need to be beautiful? I vote no! Does it need to function, absolutely. When I am out showing houses for sale in Saskatoon and I have to get from the west side to the east side it is nice to have some options and not have to weave left and right to get to the main bridge.

If you are looking to a buy a house for sale in Saskatoon let me know and I would be more than happy to help out! If you are sick of the taxes and looking to sell your house in Saskatoon in the hopes that the grass is greener elsewhere I would also love to speak to you!

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd

Arbor Creek Will NOT Be Getting A School

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

It has been rumoured for years that the vacant land across from Wright and Kenderdine Rd in Saskatoon’s Arbor Creek may be getting a school. Owned by Dundee Realty this site has been designated for future schools however there has been a formal request by the developer to turn this into a new residential housing site for Saskatoon’s east side. The company has already begun the process to rezone the sites making 45 residential lots available in Arbor Creek for single family homes  according to the Saskatoon Star Phoenix today. It would be great to see more lots for sale in Arbor Creek but at what cost? Having lived near the future site myself I can see the benefit for new home buyers in Saskatoon as you can get a brand new house in a well established area so I am sure there will be a huge demand for the lots.

Instead it appears that the public and catholic school systems are putting their efforts into Willowgrove.I have helped a few people buy houses for sale in Willowgrove that will be near these schools that ARE going in.  The Catholic school board has already removed Arbor Creek from its five-year capital plan for the division. Unfortunately many homeowners near the ‘proposed’ school site in Arbor Creek chose that location for the future potential. They have already been waiting a long time and by now most of their small children are likely in high school!

Land for Saskatoon new home construction is limited and expensive to begin with, especially on the east side. This land will be in huge demand so I have to give it to Dundee, they know how to develop better than the city does in my opinion.

If you are looking to buy or sell real estate in Saskatoon give me a shout! I would be more than happy to help find you the perfect house.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Saskatoon

Come ON Star Phoenix, Why Print Garbage Like This?

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

You know we are lacking in newsworthy articles when the Star Phoenix chooses to print something as obscure and silly as this article, which is basically mortgage and real estate terms for dummies. I am sure they meant it to be fun but it is misleading and lacks professionalism.

As a Saskatoon real estate agent this article did put a bee in my bonnet…or burn my bunns…or whatever other choice phrase one may have for getting annoyed. There should have been a nice big disclaimer that this article was a joke. Example-portable mortgage-a mortgage for a motor home. Okay, that is sort of funny, I am not totally humorless, but I still think as a Saskatoon realtor (r) there needs to be follow up.

I did enjoy one of the comments made:

I guess an early morning Boomer is sitting tight, waiting for a house which was upgraded to his delight, and wants it for 1980’s price. Sure! wait for prices to drop to “historical” standards.
If anyone ever dealt with a real estate agent (in Saskatoon) or a mortgage broker, they know how much work is done by them, and if they are lucky after all the work is done, the client may choose to stay with the sucker who did ALL the work to help the client with their best possible result.
There should be a service fee charged like that charged by servicemen who just come to give you an estimate, refundable if you use their expertise.

This was an anonymous post but as a Saskatoon real estate agent I wanted to hug this person! I can’t tell you how many hours and days and months some times I have dealt with a potential Saskatoon home buyer or someone looking to put their Saskatoon house for sale only to get burned when they decide to use the price I worked out for them to list their house for sale in Saskatoon privately or with an agent who is willing to list it for less commission (but you do get what you pay for as some of those same Saskatoon real estate agents have openly told me before what their sellers would take as a low offer, so did saving $1000 cost the sellers a lot more, yep!).

I am an honest, ethical, hardworking Saskatoon real estate agent with Century 21 Saskatoon and I know that many people have had bad experiences with some of my colleagues. I know that my integrity and hard work will keep me successful in my Saskatoon real estate career but give me peace of mind. There are definitely some of my colleagues who I wonder how they sleep at night. They would answer “very well” but there are lots of us Saskatoon realtors who are doing a good and honest job who get judged by the bad ones.

Kari Calder
Century 21 Conexus Realty Ltd