Presently, the real estate market has been complicated by changing mortgage rules, lack of inventory and rising interest rates. Separately, each of these factors can complicate buying/selling decisions making conditions volitile. Many other issues can impact the value of a home and its attractiveness to potential consumers. Over our years of experience long-term contacts associated to HVAC installations have proven to be problematic.

As we enter the steamy months of the summer one guaranteed truth is that we will rely on our home comfort systems most days. We have seen real estate deals be blown up by oppressive long term HVAC purchases that will demand full pay out before a deal can be closed.

In many instances clients are attracted by seemingly low payment plans accrued over several years, and as time passes many forget about this monthly payment. When the time comes to settle sellers are faced with the formidable cost of pay out these contracts.

Commonly, a HVAC company will offer low monthly payment over five years for a home comfort solution at a cost of $8000-11000. What consumers do not realize is that these prices are inflated up to 25% with interest rates close to 9%. The penalties for buying out these contracts are substantial, in addition to the initial inflated price point. If clients maintain the contract for the duration of the required time these heating and air conditioning units can end up costing double. These contracts cannot be assigned to new owners and remain a liability to the seller.

What’s the solution?

1.     Avoid these contracts.

2.     Ask questions about penalties, closing ratios and read the fine print of any HVAC agreement.

3.     Look for contractors that offer their own cheaper financing or shop at a store that has no interest for 12 months. Be sure to pay off these agreements before the end of the 11th month.

4.     Get a couple of price quotations from reputable independent contractors

5.     Check into a home line of credit to finance your HVAC project.

6.     Be wary of the premium you pay on brands like Trane and Lennox, all units are made with the same components and have the same warranty.

7.     Make sure you fill out all warranty cards as you might qualify for an extra five years of coverage.

In our two decades of experience, we have had several clients disappointed when large cash payouts are required before closing. If a low monthly payment over five years seems too good to be true, it likely is.

Feel free to contact us for more information or contact our trusted HVAC specialists at and tell him Trish and Kevin recommended them.


Time To Panic or Take a Deep Breath


Buying and selling real estate is undoubtedly one of the most emotional experiences in our lives. A home provides shelter and solace from an increasingly challenging world, but what happens when our largest investment makes us question our financial security? Over the last three months the market has seen shrinking prices sending real estate consumers into panic. One must remember that the housing market is just that, a market. If you have been following the stock market you will have noticed that prices have been volatile, and the real estate market has been comparatively calm. Conditions for market success have not been favourable reacting to rising inflation. Market watchers are not overly surprised at shrinking prices because there are several explanations. First, interest rates have risen modestly and are expected to continue to rise over the next few quarters impacting affordability for some buyers. Savings must increase to offset the added cost of borrowing. Second, Ontario is facing a provincial election. Election years are typically soft for the real estate market as many are waiting to see the complexion of the new government. Third, COVID has had a great impact on prices over the last two years as consumers have kept values rising reacting to being house bound. Fourth, COVID again, people have returned to travel with numbers of travellers in Canada’s airports returning to pre-pandemic levels. Fourth, prices have finally hit a point where they are unattainable for many first-time buyers chasing a large group from the market. This is not an exhaustive set of conditions, but you can see why we have seen a downward trend in prices.

The market will need time to absorb these challenges and when the dust settles, we will likely see upward pressure on prices. There is no doubt that demand has pushed price increases, but this is only part of the issue. Interest rates have been at historical lows and in turn push home values up. Demand has been pushed by an expectation that prices will continue to skyrocket making people feel they should purchase before they are priced out. If a client qualifies for an $800 000 mortgage today and expect prices to rise by 10% during that year, the pressure is on to buy now or pay $880 000 later.

Why should you expect the market to rebound?  Although one should not expect the market to return to insane increases, recovery will occur. Eventually COVID will be in our rear-view mirror and work from home mandates will decrease. People will continue to spend money on travel and recreation in the short-term choosing to leave real estate decisions on the backburner for a while. Consumers will absorb new interest rates and return to the market. The GTA is insulated by extreme downward pressure and will remain stable compared to other Canadian markets. The writer purchased a home in 1988 when rates were 12-14% and in the first year of ownership saw the value drop. After nine years of ownership the value increased 25%, which seems modest now, making home ownership a lucrative investment. Now is not the time to consider house flipping and assignment sales on new builds because it’s unlikely you will see short-term gains that would cover the costs associated to buying and selling. Best advice, if you are entering the market, it might be time to get a good deal. Buy a home where you would like to spend a substantial number of years and your investment will pay off. The same advice stands for those who recently purchased at potentially higher prices. These buyers will benefit from locked in lower interest rates and although they may have paid a bit of a premium, values will increase over the mortgage term. Investing in real estate is never a bad move, this generation of buyers and sellers must accept new market conditions armed with the knowledge that history is on their side.



The real estate business introduces the practitioner to a number of interesting buying/selling circumstances. First-time buyers, renters, commercial clients and downsizers are a few of the situations we’ve helped clients navigate. Late last year, we embarked on our own real estate adventure when our son, Cole, decided to relocate to Victoria, British Columbia. At 22 years, Cole had decided that the Southern Ontario climate was not conducive to his current training passion. An off-spiring relocation was new because our boys had pursued further education close to home, but this time we had to make the leap.

Throughout his formative years, Cole competed at a high level in almost every sport under the sun. While cross training for mixed martial arts, he found a passion in competitive road cycling. He tried to work on an indoor trainer during the winter months, but static training just didn’t cut it and a move to fairer conditions was necessary. He secured a job in Victoria and after job training was given a month to get his affairs together and move to British Columbia. One of his hometown friends caught wind of this bold plan and decided Ontario wasn’t for him either and decided to move with Cole (Insert the theme from The Beverly Hillbillies). We started to look for suitable living spots in the city and realized that rent was quite pricey. We pitched the idea that the guys should forgo renting and seek to enter the real estate market as first-time buyers. In short order, we found a two-bedroom condominium in uptown Victoria at a reasonable price (compared to the GTA) and made an offer. The guys were thrilled, and it was decided that Cole would be the advance scout. He would move out first and take possession of the condo. His friend would follow shortly after graduating school in early 2021. Now we were faced with the moving logistics.

When we embarked on this plan the weather was fair and the leaves offered a palette of brilliant colours. Winter was approaching quickly, and we had to decide how to move Cole and his belongings to the west coast. After considering several options, we settled on renting a cube van (one way) and convoy across the country. I would drive the cube van and Cole would drive his diesel Chev Cruze from the Durham Region to Vancouver Island. What could go wrong? 

The fall weather was holding in Ontario, but we knew the west was a different story and a three-day trek was planned. I booked a week off work and plotted our campaign as skillfully as a platoon commander moving an armoured column. Every detail was considered, we would leave early on a Tuesday morning to be at the Tsawwassen Ferry Friday afternoon for the water crossing. As planned, we left the front door of our Whitby home shortly after 3:00 a.m. on Tuesday morning filled with excitement, confident that our plan was foolproof; we were wrong. The first night we would make it to Thunder Bay with enough time for a solid meal and a good rest. We wouldn’t be able to use the United States as a short cut because of Covid, so the first day was a long haul. The day was uneventful, as we approached Thunder Bay, we were told by colleagues to hustle as the city was about to suffer the first unexpected winter storm. Thankfully, no snow was in sight as we hit the pillow with a plan to rise early and start our way to Regina (Day 1-1413 kms).

Hopes were dashed as the alarm went off at 5:00 a.m. and blizzard conditions were raging outside. Although the snow had only accumulated a few inches, the winds were savage, and visibility was poor. The decision was made to give the roads a shot, little did we know that the police has closed the Trans-Canada Highway and a quick retreat was made to the hotel for more shut eye. By 9:00 a.m. the snow had stopped, and we ventured out four hours late. Crossing the first time zone would buy us an hour, but the plan to have dinner in Regina was dashed. Our two-vehicle convoy chugged passed the reason the highway had been closed hours before. Many of the locals were stranded on the Trans-Canada when the storm hit, and the police were assisting their rescue. Luckily, we drove out of the snow impacted area and were able to hit our stride as we made the eight-hour trek to the Manitoba border. As we approached Regina, we were slowed by prairie snow squalls the like I had never seen, snow came at the windshield as if the Millennium Falcon had just hit light speed. The rest of the route to Regina was uneventful, we arrived at 10:30 p.m. to find that the city had closed hours before. As I jumped from the cab of the Ford Super Duty my knees buckled in pain from being stationary for so long. A dinner of roadside fair and to bed thinking that the path to the B.C. interior would be a cinch, wrong (Day 2-1283 kms).

Day 3 started with bright prairie sun and bone chilling temperatures. The wagon train had to make it to Kamloops and our last hotel stay. Just a simple drive through the remainder of Saskatchewan, Alberta and into the mountains, should be easy enough. I had heard mention of The Badlands, but never imagined how bad they could be in mid-November. A strong highway crosswind made in necessary to steer the truck sideways for the better part of the trip toward Calgary. The wind was so strong that the truck sides made thumping and creaking sounds as if it would be torn apart at any moment. We dare not stop for fear that we would never make it back on the road. It was at this moment that I gained a deep respect for the professional truckers that keep our economy moving during the Canadian winter. The Trans-Canada was caked with about four inches of ice that had been created by blowing snow and the compaction of truck tires. We were fortunate to join a train of 53’ trucks that adopted us into their fraternity. To our great relief the winds subsided as we approached Calgary, an urban respite from the tundra. Approaching dinner, we headed out of the city toward the mountains, quickly the winds raged again flowing off the mountain peaks pushing our vehicles off the road. It was back to white knuckle driving and prayers that we would soon be in the shelter of the mountains. As darkness fell the snow started, visibility was poor, and the roads were treacherous. It was during this stretch that Cole and I decided that we might not make it. We both tried to call Trish to convey how harrowing our situation was and that we might find our early graves in the Canadian Cordillera. She was out for dinner (lol). The two time zones we crossed that day bought us a couple of extra hours or we would have run out of night. I had always considered myself a skilled driver, but nothing prepared me for the twists and climbs the mountain highways presented. Trying to blindly predict the nature of the road in total darkness presented some of the most frightening moments of my life. I would be following the taillights of a large truck only to have them disappear around a seemingly 90- degree turn, leaving me to predict what was next. We arrived in Kamloops well after the sidewalks had rolled up and were lucky to dine on the last of the ready-to-eat fare from the closing supermarket. The final approach to Vancouver would be a breeze and with a welcome respite provided by the Island ferry (Day 3-1373 kms).

Just a quick descent out of the mountains and a river run to Delta and the ferry, a nice restful drive. The day broke with yet another blizzard. Not to worry, we had plenty of time to make the ferry at 2:00 p.m. The Coquihalla Highway proved to be the worst stretch by far. We crept out of Kamloops and waited patiently to escape the snow as we came out of the mountains. As we descended, we noticed that the police has closed the highway in the opposite direction, a wise move after we had spent hours in the snow. Thankfully, we joined the shelter of a group of truckers and used them to gauge the conditions. Delays assured that the 2:00 p.m.  ferry was a pipe dream and I had to scramble to change our plans. We would make the crossing at dinner as long as we could get there in one piece. Approximately 150 kms from the coast, it was as if Mother Nature had snapped her fingers, torrential rain began to fall, the snow was a distant memory. I had never been so happy to see the sky open in my life and realized that I was not going to perish on this adventure. We wouldn’t make it to the storage unit in Victoria before closing, but we would be alive. The Tsawwassen sun shone brightly and for the first time in days, I cracked the window of the truck enjoying the sea air as we boarded the ship. Covid confined Cole to the comfort of the Cruze below deck, while I was able to stroll the promenade. The temperature on the crossing was likely just above zero, but I strolled that ship like I was on the upper deck of a Caribbean cruise.

The rest is quite boring. Victoria offered open restaurants, pizza and beer; we had arrived in paradise. That night we slept a solid fourteen hours recovering from our ordeal. An unmatched bond was built between father and son based on terror, anguish and loathing of our travel choice. Since then when feeling down, we remind ourselves that we endured far worse, a winter drive across Canada. It was only when we arrived in British Columbia that we realized we had broken the law by making the trip without the necessity of snow tires and chains. I will vehemently oppose any suggestion to make such a trip again, as the western mountains should only be enjoyed through the window of business class. How we made it shall remain a tale to be told by two men that will always share an unflappable respect for the land.


Toronto - Mega Block Developments

There was an interesting opinion piece in The Globe and Mail on Friday January 8, 2021, written by Alex Bozikovic, discussing a proposed development on the southwest corner of Yonge and Eglinton in Toronto. Mr. Bozikovic is the architecture critic for the paper and has made contributions to several publications and authored a book on Toronto architecture.

Bozikovic hearkens back to the 1950s and 1960s when the hot idea in urban design was to create spaces to be “park-like, uncrowded…they will be clean, impressive and monumental (and) will have all the attributes of a well-kept dignified cemetery”. While this may have seemed desirable fifty years ago, I believe a neighbourhood without proper access can become boring, underutilized and dangerous.

The site in question housed a large TTC yard and Canada Square. The current proposal would see 600,000 square feet of commercial space lost, in the interim, and replaced with a mixed residential and commercial community built on top of a new bus terminal. Essentially, a large office tower would be built along Eglinton Ave West. Moving south a planned green space would be built over the concreate of the bus terminal adjacent to four large residential buildings on a small cul-de-sac. One can imagine what this type of development would do to the traffic in the surrounding neighbourhoods. Likely the green space would only be used during office hours and sit empty at other times. Although I’m not a botanist, I ponder how viable a green space would be built over a concreate structure, not to mention the shade that would be created with five menacing obelisks. The entire complex would be owned and managed privately making me wonder how “open” this green space would be. Certainly, private security and surveillance would be instituted as part of the plan.

I found the article interesting in light of recent efforts the city has made to open up access to large mega-block developments of the past. Regent Park was built around the time that this notion was popular. It became a glaring failure on several levels but for me the mega-block design was paramount. Regent Park began construction in the late 1940s and closed down approximately twelve city blocks. Over the ensuing decades the green spaces became little more than open fields and the recreational facilities reduced to places for illicit activity. Oak Street, cutting through the area, was closed to vehicular traffic limiting the ability of city services to operate. All this seclusion along with the visual barriers to the street provided by the apartment buildings made it the perfect place to evade detection. A little further east, a cul-de-sac was created on Oak Street and several multi-level residential units were built. In my mind the proposed development at Yonge and Eglinton may be doomed to a similar fate. It seems logical to me that building large scale developments has an extreme downside and a more organic development that includes public streets and staggered eclectic development would be better.

Why not keep the existing buildings and allow greater access to the space in between? Large commercial and residential units complemented by smaller, sustainable businesses would make the location a destination. When I think of my favourite places to visit in Toronto, Kensington Market, The Distillery District, Bloor West Village and Ossington come to mind where streets and pedestrian thoroughfares provide an opportunity to amble on a fine day.


When will the market pop!

Often when talking to friends and acquaintances I’m asked, “what do you think about the real estate market and when will it pop?” My quick answer usually goes something like this, “if I had that answer I wouldn’t be talking to you, rather, I would be on a private island living out my dreams”. In this blog I would like to discuss three important factors in trying to unravel the secrets of the market: subjectivity, sustainability and speculation.

To be honest there are no secrets, it comes down to being well informed and having the type of representation that has your best interest at heart. Depending on individual needs the time to enter the market is whenever you are ready. As the old adage goes, “don’t put off for tomorrow what you can do today”. Buyers and sellers should be more concerned with what suits their lifestyle and where will they find happiness. If you are making a lateral move and staying in the same area with relatively the same housing needs, buying and selling are co-dependent. If staying in the same area your buying and selling prices are going to be comparable unless you plan to down/upsize. Trying to sell high and buy low in the same market is fruitless when trying to purchase similar properties. For example, if I wanted to sell my fully decked out custom home and buy something similar, I should expect to sell high and buy high. If I’m willing to purchase a “fixer upper” in the same scenario there will be gains to be made. If I’m a senior and looking to downsize in the same market I should expect to gain far less than if I downsized to a rural area. Clients can spend their lives speculating on the best time to buy and sell while precious time passes looking after a property that no longer suits their needs.

It may surprise many, but 2020 was a much better year for real estate than 2019. If you recall 2019’s market was impacted by new mortgage rules that took time to settle in with consumers nationally. The Toronto market continued to be impacted by the municipal land transfer tax while the Vancouver market suffered from the taxes placed on foreign purchasers. Both these scenarios fuelled the real estate market in Montreal as investment money ran from the added costs in the other two markets. In 2020 the market was deeply impacted by the Covid crisis in the early going. As the year passed and interests rates dropped, all three of the major real estate markets soared. As we look optimistically toward the end of Covid, speculation must be tempered with the slow rollout of vaccines and sky-high infection numbers through at least the first quarter. Recovery on the stock markets has been swift, bolstered by the prospect of a new government in the United States among other factors.

Recently the December market numbers have been released. In my last blog, I discussed the role working from home and the need for more space have had on the market. House sales in the Toronto market were up 8% in 2020 over the previous year, while Vancouver saw a spike of 22%. In both cases the combination of cheap money and limited supply has returned us to bidding wars for many listings.

This eventuality brings the question of consumer sustainability. While many are looking for bigger properties, while interest rates are low, will consumers be able to sustain mortgage payments and desired lifestyles if rates creep 2 or 3 points higher?

The real estate market will always remain subjective and speculative. Trying to pinpoint when to sell for the highest price and then buy at a low price is a fool’s game. A better strategy would be to enter the market with the knowledge that you would like to move based on your personal, financial and lifestyle needs avoiding transaction remorse.


Lower interest rates have not necessarily helped first time buyers
The Covid-19 pandemic has changed our lives in almost every way. Certain aspects like family and home-based pursuits have been strengthened, while external activities like education, recreation and entertainment have been challenged.
Covid-19 has had an absolute impact on the economy with many businesses closing, negatively impacting employment opportunities.
Interest rates are at historical lows and if you have been saving to purchase your first home you may be well positioned; but that may not be the case in all areas. If you are still looking to live the urban lifestyle, there has been downward pressure on condominium prices as vacancy rates creep higher creating expanding inventories. The suburbs are a different story, particularly in the Regional Municipality of Durham. Those starting families and needing more space have been leaving Toronto’s core and looking to the 905 region for access to modern infrastructure and recreation facilities. Many established families in the 905 have decided to weather the pandemic and stay in their current homes. This move has limited supply, while demand has crept up. This trend may be partially attributed to the pandemic and the need for yard spaces that condominiums just cannot offer.
In the Durham Region the average home price was up almost 20% year over year with the City of Oshawa seeing gains of over 22.5%. Established homeowners in Toronto have seen enormous increases in equity since 2009 making the move outside the city financially advantageous. This reality has created cash rich competition for first-time buyers.
Many younger real estate buyers that purchased a condo as an investment years ago are now stuck with the prospect of dwindling equity and increasing maintenance fees limiting their ability to save a down payment for a larger home outside the city. Furthermore, younger wage earners tend to work in less established positions that have been hit harder with pandemic layoffs and downsizing.
For those fortunate enough to have the money to purchase, short supply has seen the return of bidding wars for attractive properties. There is a good option for millennials, the fixer upper. The 905 presents many opportunities to purchase an older home (25-40 years old) that may be in original condition. Those willing can avoid the bidding wars and seek older homes saving thousands of dollars. One clear advantage of this strategy is having less money tied up in a home purchase freeing funds to update a home with the latest amenities suited to the buyer’s taste.


Being in the present is important for our health and perspective, our future presents a plethora of opportunities for growth. Without trying to be overly new age, the steps we take now will provide a brighter tomorrow. The new year is a fresh start and avoiding grand resolutions may help avoid self-deprecation as the winter months drag on. Bearing this in mind, the old adage “one day at a time” would be more useful to keep personal growth goals on the rails. To be resilient means to be mindful of all the things we as Canadians enjoy. Be kind and be well in 2021.

Over the holidays there was a newspaper article highlighting a proposed development in Vancouver, called Quantum Park. One interesting result of the pandemic was the ability technology has given us to be productive away from the office. Quantum Park will redevelop three hectares of industrial land in Vancouver’s inner harbour into mixed use (commercial/residential) property. The development will be part of moving the city toward a tech centric economy. Although the office will not completely be outmoded, Quantum Park will allow tech companies to lease office space and meeting areas in close proximity to employee dwellings making the morning commute obsolete.

Closer to home Toronto has been considering what to do with The Port Lands that stretch across the lake front from Cherry to Leslie Streets south of Lakeshore Boulevard. One of the most exciting announcements has been the naturalization of the Don River. This process will see the waters of the Don River flow freely into Lake Ontario for the first time in over a century. Parks, bridges, and foot paths will complement proposed residential spaces between the Keating and Shipping channels creating a new island. The area will be complemented by the existing Cherry Beach and Tommy Thompson Park (Leslie Street Spit).

Indeed, there are exciting times ahead for residential, commercial and leisure developments in the Greater Toronto Area. Over the next few months, we will be bringing some other interesting developments in real estate to our readers.

Thank you for your support over the last fifteen years, let’s take 2021 as it unfolds with a positive outlook toward a healthy and hopeful future.


MARKET UPDATE: mortgage debt held by institutional lenders has reached a new high.

Finally, a beautiful sunny day with seasonable temperatures has arrived. The cool weather, gloomy skies and rain haven’t helped the spring real estate market.

Some analysts feel a recession is possible, but recent positive unemployment numbers and continued control of interest rates should temper any long-term economic pull back.

There are several reports that mortgage debt held by institutional lenders has reached a new high. The outstanding balance peaked at 1.56 trillion in April, up 0.17% from the month before. This represents an increase of 3.2% from last year.

New home builders have been slashing prices and, offering substantial incentives to entice buyers. The condo market sales have been relatively good in the Toronto with cost of ownership outstripping rental income.

On the positive side, townhomes and some single detached homes have been subject to multiple offers. The higher interest rates, and strict mortgage rules have impacted on purchasing power taking some buyers out of the market.

I learned early in my career that the real estate market is not static, but constantly changes along with internal and external environmental conditions. Like the equities market, real estate prices can change over night depending on many factors that influence supply and demand. I believe that the late spring and pending federal election are just two of the many reasons we are seeing downward pressure on prices particularly in the 905 Region.

The real estate market can change monthly, quarterly, and yearly. The historical real estate frenzy has left many consumers with unrealistic expectations of inflated selling prices and short selling times. Looking at the relevant data assists in determining a price point, buy ultimately market value is determined in the traditional manner of exposing a property for a reasonable time at a realistic price. Failing to market in this manner may leave a listing to languish on the market, while surrounding comparable properties sell quickly at slightly lower price points. This set of circumstances may stigmatize the property leaving potential buyers wondering what is wrong with a slow-moving listing,

Market forces have shifted from a Sellers to a Buyers market and, it’s very important to ensure your home is positioned competitively. To accomplish this goal, list your property at an appropriate price, be cooperative by allowing all showing requests and be patient so that your home can be exposed to as many potential buyers as possible. By following these few tips, you will get an idea of how well the home is priced by requesting feedback from people that have viewed your home. Selling your home is an emotional process and you should never be insulted that others do not readily see the value that you feel exists in your home

I wrote this blog over the course of a few days, the weather has gifted us a string of beautiful, warm and sunny days and the Raptors are enjoying playoff success lifting spirits. This injection of positivity has also boosted interest and activity in the real estate market.


Happy Selling!



This winter, Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area suffered unusually cold temperatures. Piles of snow, freezing rain and rain coupled with high winds wreaked havoc on our homes. Although extreme weather is a part of Canadian weather your home may be suffering from some bumps and bruises manifesting in roof and foundation leaks. As a home owner it is important to be prepared for these issues and address them as they arise.

Recently, I was vacationing in Florida and had difficulty returning home due to our last (hopefully) wintry blast. The storm caused flight cancellations as our plane wouldn’t leave Fort Lauderdale avoiding the high winds and freezing rain and snow at Pearson.

I made it home after the storm had passed. While unpacking I looked up at the ventilation fan in the master bathroom and noticed a ceiling stain. I immediately recognized this as an issue after auditing several home inspections. Water infiltration and the associated damage can impact the value of a home and the health of the inhabitants.

The stain was not large. Rather than ignore the issue and hope for the best, I conducted a thorough visual inspection of the bathroom and adjacent rooms as water has a bad habit of creeping along finished ceilings, walls, and insulation (with the help of gravity) causing mold and rot.

I contacted a professional roofer with a solid reputation, and he was kind enough to stop by the house that afternoon. Once on the roof he located a spot where a few shingles were missing and an insecure flashing around a vent. The shingles were replaced, and the flashing secured for a quick cost-efficient repair.

High winds, freezing rain and snow can also cause moisture beneath grade level causing lateral pressure to your foundation as it freezes and expands. This pressure can cause cracks in the foundation leading to associated damage to wall, floors and ceilings.

As we enjoy an early spring thaw the large quantity of water produced from melting snow and ice, can pool allowing moisture to creep into the basement through foundation cracks, window, doors and any other opening. You should do a complete visual inspection around your home to look for peeling or bubbling paint, raised flooring, stains on carpet, musty or damp odours and any other evidence water may be present. If the water has been present for quite some time you may notice efflorescence (a crystalline deposit of salts seen on exposed concrete, brick, stucco or natural stone surfaces). Efflorescence is a result of moisture travelling through the solid material and minerals being left behind as the water evaporates. 

It is also important to ensure that water is drained away from your home. Be sure to ensure down spouts are attached and leak free. If the down spouts have splash pads, ensure that they are crack free and graded away from your foundation.

These issues should be checked twice a year (spring and fall) as you open/close outdoor areas like patios.


Part of the Guest Homes Guide To Buying & Selling A Home.

In the second installment of our video series Kevin Guest speaks to Mortgage Specialist Kim Rankin. Topics covered include common mistakes made by potential home buyers when looking for a home and how to protect your credit score.



We are now in the second quarter of 2018, while we are still waiting for greener grass flowers to blossom Patricia, Cheryl and Kevin have been spending time preparing for a busy spring, summer and fall season.

We have been fortunate to partner with our clients and friends to create positive outcomes with their biggest investment. While we haven’t seen the gains that have been enjoyed over the last few years the market is stabilizing and absorbing the new Provincial tax on foreign buyers and mortgage stress test rules. There will be new challenges over the next few months, but be assured that the GTA is the most important and well insulated real estate market in the country and there is always opportunity to make gains while giving your family a happy home.

Guest Homes will be doing a complete revamp of our flagship website,, in the coming weeks so that our visitors can receive a more immersive experience. We are also excited to announce The Guest Homes Guide to Buying and Selling a Home, a series of professional videos to be released monthly, covering all the topics important for today’s market.



We are glad to have you along during this exciting time for our business. We are always here to answer your real estate questions and hope you enjoy what’s in store.

Enjoy spring,

Patricia, Cheryl and Kevin