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9 Secrets to Selling Your House Fast in a Slow Market

Small PicSelling a house in a slow real estate market can be difficult. In times like these, it's not enough to simply list your home and wait; you actually have to sell your home. No one really wants to sell anything when the market is bad, however, it's not impossible to sell your house in these conditions. It just takes a positive attitude and a different kind of game plan.

Even though the market's not favourable to sellers and widespread economic recovery may be months, even years off, there are a number of tactics available to increase the likelihood of a sale. Read More

5 Tips To Boost Your Affordability When Arranging For A Mortgage

1. Know What You Can Afford- A Mortgage pre-approval helps you establish a price range and the maximum mortgage you can reasonably afford. Most lenders will lock in a rate for up to 120 days when pre-approving potential borrowers for a mortgage.

2. Revisit Your Current Debts- When applying for a mortgage , a lender will look at your total debt service ratio (TDS), or how much of your total income is going towards various types of debts, including car loans, credit cards, and other consumer loans.

A Mortgage broker can advise on restructuring your current debt (by increasing the amortization and lowering payments on your car loan), to ensure that your TDS ratio is acceptable to prospective lenders.

3. Look Into A Longer Amortization- Some lenders offer mortgages with amortizations longer than the traditional 25 year amortization which result in a lower monthly payment.

Those opting for a longer amortization should plan make lump sum payments down the road or increase their monthly payments (say, after receiving a salary increase), to lessen the amount of interest they pay throughout the life of their mortgage.

4. Increase The Size Of Your Down Payment- Increasing the size of your down payment means a lower monthly payment. A common way for first time buyers to come up with more cash for a downpayment is to make use of the Federal Home Buyers' Plan to withdraw up to $20,000 each from a registered retirement saving plan (RRSP) without tax penalty to buy or build a qualifying home. Also, many lenders allow the down playment to come from a properly documented gift, and a borrowed down payment may be possible for some borrowers.

5. Consider Locking In Your Rate For A Longer Period Of Time-  If you're uneasy about fluctuating interest rates and your ability to meet any increases, then a fixed rate mortgage could be a good fit. Many lenders are open to longer fixed fixed terms, up to 10 years in some cases