Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Why you should use your HELOC...

I’m Nathalie Ng. I am the Money Chick- A mortgage agent who is licensed to give you unbiased advice on your mortgage. 

Nathalie, I hear so much about HELOC’s what are they?


Home Equity Line of Credit is a smart and flexible financing solution for home owners who own an existing property. It is an integrated financing solution where the home owners borrow in a convenient way & unlock the equity they have built up in their home. They can use that capital however they wish.

What are the reasons in general people would get a HELOC?

There are many reasons for getting a HELOC. Whether it’s paying down high interest rate debts, undertaking home renovations, or simply handling day-to-day expenses, many people seem to be feeling the financial squeeze. But few realize there’s something close at hand that can help them manage all of their credit 

Can you give me a practical example when it is used?

HELOC’s are usually used to pay off:  High Interest Credit Card debts, car & personal loans & unsecured lines of credit. Because the existing credit cards debts are at very high interest rate ranging from 19 to 30%, a HELOC is much more viable since the rate on a HELOC product ranges from (Prime rate +0.5) to (Prime +1). So it can be as low as 3.5 or 4% roughly. This represents significant savings in interest.

Another key benefit of the HELOC is that it allows you to take advantage of interest rates that are lower than most other debt products, namely, unsecured credit lines, some car loans etc…. That could mean savings of hundreds of dollars or more each every year. 

So it seems there are potential savings when using HELOC to pay debts..  Can you give me another example?

Some people use it to do home renovations in their basements. These can cost $20,000 and up. For example- If someone is renovating their kitchen and/or basement, and the cost is let’s say $30,000. Instead of paying cash or using credit cards of 19%, the homeowner you can do a HELOC for lets say 4% and the minimum monthly payment is only $99! That is pretty good.

What if people already have a mortgage. Can they still get a HELOC?

Very often, people refinance their mortgage since their mortgage of 3 years ago, is more expensive than mortgage rates now. So it is in their best interest to refinance now. So I encourage them to take the extra 
equity out and use it for personal use. All this can be accessed through a single, one-time application. 
In the case where they don’t need to refinance, they can just obtain a HELOC as a 2nd mortgage. It is also
good to remember that a HELOC is like an open mortgage- so there are no fees or charges to pay that Line of credit in full. 

Can anyone apply for a HELOC?

Yes, anyone who is a home owner can apply. However, to be eligible, they need to have a Triple AAA client, good credit and a stable job. And those who are approved, they can only borrow up to 65% with a HELOC. New rules effective July 9th, 2012.  One word of caution I would like to add though: Is that a HELOC is not to be used to satisfy shopping indulgences such as mall shopping, or big screen TV. A person who is getting a Line of Credit to buy such household items should think twice about that. 

That is great information, thank you Nathalie. How can we get hold of you?
Thank you, I can be reached at             416-629-1818      

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Transit Amalgamation or Doom in Toronto?

So Toronto Transit Riders fear being taken over by the Ontario body called Metrolinx
Has Toronto endlessly produced over budget and past due date projects?
Isn't Metro linx more efficient?  

PLEASE OH PLEASE   Lets have some regional transit planning besides building fences around Toronto. Lets join the 905 to the 416 Please include 519 and 705!   Why does Ontario not have Bullet Trains?

What do you think?

A message from the Toronto Environmental Alliance's Public Transit Campaigner: Speak up to keep our public transit public!
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Ontario Budget Attempts to Privatize Public Transit and other Public Services

Hello fellow TTCrider,

I'm sending you this urgent message because I think TTCriders might want to know how the Provincial Budget Bill could impact Toronto's public transit.

Just as we savour our victory in winning back four Light Rail Transit lines for Toronto, an even greater threat is presenting itself—two provincial government initiatives that may foster privatization of our public transit systems. They are:

1) Schedule 28 (The Government Services and Service Providers Act, 2012), which is a section of the provincial government’s Budget Bill 55 that goes for a final vote at the Legislature this Wednesday, June 20th.

There is still opportunity for an amendment to eliminate Schedule 28 this Monday, during the meeting of the Standing Committee on Financial and Economic Affairs. We can call or email an MPP today and Monday morning and ask them to oppose Schedule 28. Here is why:

Section 28 will give a new Cabinet Minister sweeping power to authorize contracting out or privatization of any and all Ontario Government Services, with no requirement for transparency or accountability—even if this contradicts the mandates and regulations of other ministries. These measures will also apply to local municipal services and agencies. Concerns are compounded by Ontario’s obligations under international agreements, such as GATS, CETA, and NAFTA, which may prohibit favouring local contractors over international bidders. In addition, once a service is contracted out, restoring public ownership may be prohibited. (Here is a legal opinion on the Provincial budget bill that expresses many of these same concerns.)

  • Call or email your MPP. Here is a link which will give you their name and contact information when you enter your postal code. 
  • Contact members of the Standing Committee on Financial and Economic Affairs and ask them to vote for an amendment to eliminate Schedule 28. Here is a list of the members of the Committee and the Committee Clerk's contact info:
    Chair                Bob Delaney                Liberal              Mississauga - Streetsville
    Vice Chair        Teresa Piruzza            Liberal               Windsor West
    Members         Victor Fedeli                 PC                    Nipissing
                            Cindy Forster               NDP                  Welland
                            Monte McNaughton     PC                    Lambton-Kent-Middlesex
                            Yasir Naqui                  Liberal              Ottawa Centre
                            Michael Prue              NDP                 Beaches – East York
                            Peter Shurmen             PC                   Thornhill
                            Soo Wong                   Liberal             Scarborough - Agincourt
    The Committee Clerk is Valerie Quioc Lim. She can be reached at 416-325-7352 and can be sent messages for distribution to the Committee at her email: (I've bolded the Toronto MPPs.)

2) The Province and Metrolinx's handling of the four approved Light Rail projects opens the door to privatization of financing, project management, and potentially ownership and operation of these new transit lines. Privatized transit has been a disaster around the globe. We need to remind our MPPs of this to ensure we don't repeat the mistakes other cities have made privatizing their public transit systems. (Here is a short youtube video on the dangers of privatizing public transit created by the Public Transit Coalition in 2010.)

At it’s April 25th meeting, Metrolinx decided to take project management away from the TTC and implement work in the context of a public-private partnership with one large company. TTC staff voiced their concerns with this approach at their May 30th meeting, while the Commission quietly endorsed Metrolinx's approach.

In addition, here is what acclaimed author Taras Grescoe reports about Vancouver's Canada Line in Straphangers, his comprehensive new book about transit systems in 12 cities of the world: 
  • The Canada Line to the [Vancouver] airport … was the first major piece of transit infrastructure in North America to be built with a public-private partnership, an initiative many commentators say was plagued by corner-cutting. Three stations had to be eliminated from the planned route, and the station platforms … were too short to allow future expansions. Thanks to cost overruns, the provincial government will be compensating the private company that operates the line with payments up to $21 million a year until 2025.
Finally, an opinion piece in the June 5th Toronto Star by TTCrider Joell Vanderwagon, titled, Premier should tame Metrolinx beast sets out the details and dangers of the situation.

There is still time to stop this takeover. Stay tuned for actions that can be taken to address our concerns with this approach to building the desparately needed LRT network.

For More and Better Public Transit,

Jamie Kirkpatrick, Public Transit Campaigner
Toronto Environmental Alliance

Add your comments!    What do we need to make Toronto Better?

We can meet for coffee

It is informal; close to your location of choice. An informal, casual and non threatening meeting place.

In this digital day and age, Forms and PDF's we can read are on my iPAD, or on my laptops, Digital Signatures and rocket sticks for instant online access. Will I register you into the Buyers Registration 

System with your Home Selection Criteria?

We will discussing your financial capacity, employment and urgency for being located into the new property. Your credit score, down payment sources and when funds will be available with the offer.

I will need to print for you a sample of available properties for sale that meet your availability and timing. This is then packaged for you into a Buyers Agency folder with; 

Or we could meet at my Office.

Yes, I keep an office because we still need the PRIVACY.

We need a location where you can look at an offer, read the information, digest the content and context, ponder and consider the negotiation at hand and formulate a decision, WITHOUT ambient noise and over your shoulder Looky Lou's....

Yes even in this day and age with the work from home concept; I still like my office.    Where would you like to meet?

Shopping this summer?  Lets get started...

+David Pylyp

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Investors need to pay Landlord License Fee

Toronto has not yet joined other municipalities to license Landlords but that may be short lived as the City looks for new sources of Revenue. The average tax appears to be at $825.00 per unit.

Condo Units in a Building are exempt.
Compulsory licensing for small landlords is rapidly spreading throughout Ontario, having come into effect most recently in Waterloo on April 1 and North Bay on May 1. Other Ontario cities which have already implemented a licensing regime are GuelphLondonMississauga and Oshawa.
The idea appears to be contagious, and many other cities are looking at the concept, including Hamilton and Kitchener.
Waterloo’s licensing regime is typical. Licensed rental properties in homes or townhouses can have no more than four bedrooms, but units in apartment buildings and condominiums are strangely exempt.
Landlords are required to pay application and annual fees of as much as $825 to rent bedrooms in houses and townhomes.
Regulated units are theoretically subject to higher standards for health and safety, and landlords are subject to a criminal records check. The new bylaws set maximum occupancy limits (apparently regulating how many people can sleep in one bedroom), and minimum distances separating one licensed building from a neighbouring one.
Previously required fire inspections have been eliminated, and landlords now have to self-certify compliance with six different bylaws, including, strangely, fence bylaws, as well as building, fire, electrical and health codes.
The ability of Ontario municipalities to implement landlord licensing came into force in 2007 with changes to the province’s Municipal Act, which allowed municipalities to regulate businesses and business transactions.
Many observers — including this one — are concerned that the new regulatory scheme is either a municipal money grab, or a crude attempt to regulate and limit housing for students and large families. Both groups are often classified as low income. In Waterloo, for example, two tenant families with three children each cannot live in houses within 150 metres of each other.
North Bay city statement about its new bylaw says that the purpose of regulation includes ensuring that rental properties “do not create a nuisance to the surrounding neighbourhoods, and . . . protect the residential density, amenity, character and stability of the residential areas.”
Similar arguments were used to justify restrictive property covenants based on race and religion prior to the 1950s. In a horrendous 1949 decision of the Ontario Court of Appeal, the judges wrote that a restriction on title to land preventing purchase by those of “Jewish, Negro or coloured” race or blood was just to assure that the residents were “of a class who will get along together.”
It seems that in WaterlooNorth Bay and elsewhere, today’s students and large families are being treated like yesterday’s minorities.
In fact, the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) is currently investigating whether rental housing licensing bylaws in North Bay and Waterloo create discriminatory barriers to rental housing.
Bob Aaron is a Toronto real estate lawyer. He can be reached by email at, phone             416-364-9366       or fax 416-364-3818.
Visit the Toronto Star column archives at for articles on this and other topics or his main webpage at

Are you interested in acquiring tenants for a unit in Toronto?    Give me a call at 647 218 2414

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Realtor 2.0 Toronto Real Estate update

We are rapidly moving to the half year for Toronto Real Estate, and I'd like to take a broader view of whats happening in our City. In downtown Toronto; the commercial sector, The Bank of Nova Scotia Tower sold for a record $ 1.27 Billion. This is the highest value for a Canadian office building and it was sold to Canadian Investors! 

That single sale is a statement about continued confidance about real estate in Canada and the bouyancy of the Canadian Market. The Value of High Rise office buildings and condominiums has been rizing equally because of the low interest rates and strength in the economy. We are seeing increased incidences of multiple offers across all product ranges. In the Toronto West and Etobicoke Region its not uncommon or rare to see a million dollar home in a multiple offer situation.

Last months sales activity was near 11,000 units, That's actually up 11% over last year, Our year over year increase in prices was an average of 5.6%. Loan Approvals are the lifeblood of real estate, From CMHC information that I have, Half of the loans in process, Are for renovation and improvement. We are repairing our houses to make sure we can live in them longer. 

With Condo Sales and Construction, it seems that there is actually a crane everywhere on Toronto's skyline, But they are also moving themselves a little further into the 905, down to Long Branch, off of Brown's Line, into Port Credit and into Oakville. 

Is there a possibility of a Price Adjustment? I can see that... 

Possibly for 2014, When the numbers of absorption cannot handle the number of units available for occupancy, Investors will be looking for tenants, and squeezed to take lower prices, both for rent and for purchase if they decide to sell the units. Detached houses on the other hand see people moving further, for house affordability, The Toronto Land Transfer Tax also plays a part of that purchase decision. 

There are great Mortgage Packages available this summer to move up buyers. If your mortgage is renewing give us a call, we'll see if we can get a better rate for you...  

The Banks won't phone and say   "Hey, we have a better price on this product!" 

For those people who are buying this summer.. There will be an increase in inventory during the summertime, as fewer shoppers are competing for product. This gives you chance to pick through to see whats available and hopefully get a better selection. Give me a call at 647 218 2414 to get started on your home purchase adventure. +David Pylyp