September 1, 2019 - HOUSING TRUTH update ~ Calgary housing market from Mark Kolke

HOUSING TRUTH – helping readers stay up to date about what is happening in residential real estate in Calgary …

Editor/Publisher Mark Kolke, Agent/Realtor, MaxWell South Star Realty
 FRESH NEWS – September 1, 2019
+ a cool tool: I’ve got a new on-your-phone MLS search tool. Drive by any sign, find it on your phone, check it out – contact for more information or to book a showing. Get it here or here. By the way, you don’t have drive – do your ‘virtual searching’ from the comfort of you easy-chair … .
+ CMHC posted at $505.0 million dividend to its owner, the Government of Canada; those profits come largely from the mortgage-default-insurance business on CMHC insured mortgages
+ Condominium Regulations, were set to change effective July 1,2019 – and they will still likely come into effect but the new Kenny government is ‘pausing those changes’; yes there would be more red-tape, but the larger concern those changes remedy are the outrageous fees some management companies are charging gouging people for copies of their own condo documents when they are selling - a practice that needs to stop, period.
+ measurements and photos; most agents have moved to ‘professional photos’ and ‘professionally certified measurements’ on their listings; professional photography helps buyers to better see a property through ‘buyer eyes’, with less clutter and with less influence by a seller’s tastes – and to that end many realtors encourage their clients to consult a home stager before those photos are taken; this is relatively small expense that sometimes makes the difference between ‘the home that sells v. the one that doesn’t’, especially in a challenging oversupply market.
+ Ottawa is trying to help; CMHC are launching First-Time Home Buyer Incentive (Sept. 2/2019); don’t hold your breath – lenders and mortgage brokers are just getting their heads around this recent announcement; government is responding, albeit slowly, to concerns that tightening mortgage lending rules over the last two years have stifled first-time buyers most of all. Call it electioneering if you wish, but they are finally listening – so lets hope over the next few months we’ll see if this new incentive really has legs … .
+ RECA (Real Estate Council of Alberta) is the licensing body for the real estate industry; this year and last, through the course offerings agents had a choice to make. In addition to the annual re-licensing course we all take, each year has included another course. This year is it is a math-heavy commercial and property management course. Last year it was very intensive home-measurement course – and you might wonder what is behind it all. Besides the obvious answers of ‘keeping our industry professionals current’, the reality is you can’t keep doing residential work without keeping up the residential course work, and in turn you cannot continue doing commercial work unless you keep up the commercial courses. The result, is there will be three types of real estate agents in Alberta: residential only, commercial only, or both (I’m one of those). This has been a long evolution in our business, to raise educational standards to get into and to stay in the business. I’m glad, and customers should be too – to know the agent you hire is not just someone with a smile, a handshake and smooth words, but that the professional standards and qualifications are regularly and unrelentingly rising. That’s a good thing.
+ would you like to enter our MaxWell ‘Dream Vacation Sweepstakes’?  Just send me an email and I’ll shoot you and entry form.
+ hey wine lovers ~ Joe Montana’s equestrian villa in the Napa Valley is on the market for sale, asking: US$28.9 million

+ clean fuels and carbon tax, carbon capture – it all gets confusing; the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) have come out strongly complaining that new Clean Fuels Standard (CFS) will negatively impact Canadian consumers at home and at the pump; CFS is pretty dry reading, but here it is
+ high efficiency natural gas furnaces have taken the lead – the majority of Canadians have made the switch; still a large portion in the medium-efficiency range
+ RADON – is a gas you’ll be hearing more about this winter and in the future; RECA made ‘radon education’ part of the re-licensing course for real estate agents this year. There is, in my view, more miss-information out there in the market than good-information. I’ll be updating readers on this issue in the coming months. Radon can accumulate in low areas, particularly in basements, during the cooling season. Radon is a naturally occurring gas found in many areas of Canada. Sellers should expect to see a growing number of ‘subject to a satisfactory RADON report’ in offers, so being smarter on this issue is important for all of us.
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What is this newsletter, and why do I publish it?
Most people aren’t buying or selling their home right now or anytime soon, but they have – or ought to have – concerns about what is going relating to the care and value of their investment; their home likely their largest personal investment and source of much pride. Knowing ‘what is going on’ in the market and in housing generally, in Calgary particularly, matters to almost everyone here.
Do you do residential real estate work, or just write about it?
Over the last 20 years I’ve done more commercial work, I got my start in residential mortgage brokerage, lending and sales – and I’ve always lived in housing! YES, I help people buy and sell homes. I have some recent experiences – and a great ‘selling high end homes in a saturated market case study’ to talk about. I’m happy to provide ‘neighbourhood specific’ stats and sold-listings information but you won’t find that in this newsletter; its purpose is to provide information and perspective of value. If that causes someone to call me for a listing presentation or hire me help them buy a property – I’m happy to help you get where you are going!
I thought you did commercial real estate work and publish FACILITYCalgary?
Yes I do. Leasing, sales and consulting work – office space, industrial space, land and investment property work along with public-private-partnership (P3) consulting have been the largest part of my practice for a long time. Love to do the work.
Who gets this newsletter?
In short – anyone who wants it. It’s free. Sign-up is easy. If you are a Calgary resident, client or past client, reader of Musings, Monday Morning Minute or FACILITCalgary publications I’ve got you on this list. If you don’t want to get Housing Truth, just use the opt-out button or send me a note.
AND ... I also publish a weekly e-newsletter on what is happening in Calgary - business, facilities, financing, oil & gas, commercial real estate + interviews of interesting Calgarians. I started this when I returned to Calgary in 1999 as a 'make connections' marketing tool; along the way it became a hobby-turned-avocation - click here to check out FACILITYCalgary 

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Mailing address is: c/o Mark Kolke, 6204B Burbank Road SE, Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2H 2C2

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