Category Archives: Advice Column

Why some homes struggle to sell (as illustrated by Legos)

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Well the other issue is the design. This house can’t decide if it’s a castle or contemporary home. The right buyer will love it, but so far that buyer hasn’t shown up.

Enjoy this clever lego illustration of why some homes struggle to sell, by Sacramento appraiser Ryan Lundquist & sons!

Reblogged from Sacramento Real Estate Blog

Some houses simply struggle to sell. They sit on the market week after week and month after month with no bites. Here is an example of one house that has done just that. Take the lessons here for what they’re worth.  🙂

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Five things to do if you are over-extended on your mortgage

Theresa Shaw

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Reblogged from Financial Post, Andrew Allentuck

Mortgage default may be rare in this country, but nearly 9% of indebted households need 40% or more of their gross income to pay their debt service charges, says the Bank of Canada Financial System Review.

If you can see problems coming, then you can take action to avoid foreclosure, which happens when lenders run out of other alternatives and borrowers can do no more to pay their debts. Here are five options to consider when you are being crushed by mortgage payments:

1. Extend amortization: If the mortgage has been paid down to 10 or 15 years, then extending it to 20 to 25 years or even to 30 years will decrease payments. In a lot of cases this will work, says Elena Jara, director of education for Credit Canada Solutions, a Toronto-based non-profit organization which offers free credit counselling.

2. Seek…

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Getting rid of risky property play will improve retirement

Theresa Shaw

Situation: Couple has retirement portfolio with high risk investments that could fizzle
Solution: Get out of speculative investments, then invest for reliable income

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Reblogged from Andrew Allentuck

In Alberta, a couple we’ll call Frank, who is 57, and Ella, who is 51, emigrated to Canada decades ago to find work and build secure lives.

Starting with nothing but their will to work, Frank in a municipal civil service job, Ella in health care, they have built up about $705,000 of net worth, most of it in their $490,000 home. They worry, however, that their income from about $184,000 of financial assets plus two civil service pensions at 65 plus CPP and OAS may not be enough to sustain their retirement. The irony is that their Canadian assets would make them very wealthy in their countries of birth. In Canada, though, they worry that their liabilities could sink their retirement.

It…

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