Blog

8 Reasons Real Estate is the Best Investment

Real estate has long been considered a solid investment for many reasons. It is a relatively safe and easy way for people to build wealth beginning with a small amount of money. If you are interested in investing in real estate, I’d be happy to help you find the right properties.


Here are some of the ways investing in property can help you build an investment portfolio.


1. Real estate investments can provide you with a reliable and steady cash flow. Investing in rental properties is relatively easy as expenses are predictable and if your properties remain occupied you know what to expect in terms of profit margin.


2. Real estate appreciates in value. Real estate consistently appreciates, even during economic downturns, making it one of the more reliable investments. On average, real estate in the US appreciates between 3-5% annually.


3. Real estate investments help you retire. If you have been paying on your mortgage throughout your working years, you will experience greater cash flow as you near the end of your mortgage term and the principal is paid off.


4. Real estate sales are taxed at a lower rate than other income. When you sell your property, you are taxed short- or long-term capital gains which are usually lower than income tax brackets.


5. Real estate equity can be leveraged. One of the most attractive reasons for investing in real estate is the ability to leverage your money. When you take out a mortgage to purchase property you reduce the amount of capital required. As you build up equity in the property, you borrow against the equity or refinance the original loan, freeing up cash to buy another property.


6. You have control to improve upon your asset. Unlike an investment in stock, where you have no control over how it performs, you can improve upon your real estate investment. Updating or upgrading systems, finishes, appliances, and landscaping helps build value in your investment.


7. Real estate gains taxes can be deferred. Under the 1031 exchange tax code, you can invest the gains from the sale in one property to the purchase of another property without paying taxes on the gains.


8. Real estate investments are depreciable. This is confusing, but you can legally claim a depreciation expense on an investment property even though the value of your investment property is actually appreciating. The depreciation deduction allows investors to generate a higher cash flow while reporting a lower income for tax purposes.

Could Rising Home Prices Impact Your Net Worth?

Learn how to determine your current net worth and how an investment in real estate can help improve your bottom line.
 
Among its many impacts, COVID-19 has had a pronounced effect on the housing market. Low home inventory and high buyer demand have driven home prices to an all-time high.1 This has given an unexpected financial boost to many homeowners during a challenging time. However, for some renters, rising home prices are making dreams of homeownership feel further out of reach.
 
If you’re a homeowner, it’s important for you to understand how your home’s value contributes to your overall net worth. If you’re a renter, now is the time for you to figure out how homeownership fits into your short-term goals and your long-term financial future. An investment in real estate can help you grow your net worth, build wealth over time, and gain a foothold in the housing market to keep pace with rising prices.
 
 
What is net worth?
 
Net worth is the net balance of your total assets minus your total liabilities. Or, basically, it is what you own minus what you owe.2
 
Assets include the cash you have on hand in your chequing and savings accounts, investment account balances, salable items like jewelry or a car and, of course, your home and any other real estate you own.
 
Liabilities include your total debt obligations like car loans, credit card debt, the amount you owe on your mortgage, and student loans. In addition, liabilities would include any other payment obligations you have, like outstanding bills and taxes.
 
 
How do I calculate my net worth?
 
To calculate your net worth, you’ll want to add up all of your assets and all of your liabilities. Then subtract your total liabilities from your total assets. The balance represents your current net worth.
 
Total Assets – Total Liabilities = Net Worth
 

Ready to calculate your net worth? Contact us to request an easy-to-use worksheet and a free assessment of your home’s current market value!
 
Keep in mind that your net worth is a snapshot of your financial position at a single point in time. Your assets and liabilities will fluctuate over both the short term and long term. For example, if you take out a loan to buy a car, you decrease your liability with each payment. Of course, the value of your asset (the car) will depreciate over time, as well. An asset that is invested in stocks or bonds can be even less predictable, as it’s subject to daily fluctuations in the market.
 
As a homeowner, you enjoy significant stability through your monthly real estate investment, also known as your home mortgage payment. While the actual value of your home can fluctuate depending on market conditions, your mortgage payment will decrease your liability each month. And unlike a vehicle purchase, the value of your home is likely to appreciate over time, which can help to grow your net worth. Right now, your asset may be worth significantly more than it was this time last year.3
 
If you’re a homeowner, contact us for an estimate of your home’s market value so that you can factor it into your net worth calculation. If you’re not a current homeowner, let’s talk about how homes in our area have appreciated over the last several years. That way, you can get an idea of how a home purchase could positively affect your net worth.
 
 
How can real estate increase my net worth?
 
When you put your real estate dollars to work, it’s possible to grow your net worth, generate cash flow, and even fund your retirement. We can help you realize the possibilities and maximize the return on your investment.
 
Property Appreciation
 
Generally, property appreciates in one of two ways: either through changes to the overall market or through value-added modifications to the property itself.
 
  1. Rising prices
 
This type of property appreciation is the one that many homeowners are enjoying right now. Buyer demand is at an all-time high due to a combination of low interest rates and limited housing inventory.At other times, rising home prices have been attributed to different factors. Certain local conditions—like a new commercial development, influx of jobs, or infrastructure project—can encourage rapid growth in a community or region and a corresponding rise in home values. Historically, home prices have been shown to experience an upward trend punctuated by intermittent booms and corrections.5
 
  1. Strategic home improvements
 
Well-planned and executed home improvements can also impact a home’s value and increase homeowner equity at the same time. The type of home improvement should be appropriate for the home and in tune with the desires of local buyers.
 
For example, a tasteful exterior remodel that is in keeping with the preferences of local home buyers is likely to add significant value to a home, while remodelling the home to look like the Taj Mahal or a favourite theme park attraction will not. A modern kitchen remodel tends to add value, while a kitchen remodel that is overly expensive or personalized may not provide an adequate return on investment.
 
Investment Property
 
You may be used to thinking of investments primarily in terms of stocks and bonds. However, the purchase of a real estate investment property offers the opportunity to increase your net worth both upon purchase and year after year through appreciation. In addition, rental payments can have a positive impact on your monthly income and cash flow. If you currently have significant equity in your home, let's talk about how you could put that equity to work by funding the purchase of an investment property.
 
  1. Long-term or traditional rental
 
A long-term rental property is one that is leased for an extended period and typically used as a primary residence by the renter. This type of real estate investment offers you the opportunity to generate consistent cash flow while building equity and appreciation.6
 
As an owner, you don’t usually have to worry about paying the utility bills or furnishing the property—both of which are typically covered by the tenant. Add to this the fact that traditional tenants translate into less time and effort spent on day-to-day property management, and long-term rentals are an attractive option for many investors.
 
  1. Short-term or vacation rental
 
Short-term rentals are often referred to as vacation rentals because they are primarily geared towards recreational travellers. And as more people start to feel comfortable travelling again, the short-term rental market is poised to become a more popular option than ever in certain markets. In fact, with travellers continuing to seek out domestic options in lieu of international travel, this may be the perfect time to consider an investment in a short-term rental property.7
 
Investing in a short-term rental offers many benefits. If you purchase an investment property in a top tourist destination, you can expect steady demand from travellers while taking advantage of any non-rented periods to enjoy the home yourself. You can also adjust your rental price around peak demand to maximize your cash flow while building equity and long-term appreciation.
 
To reap these benefits, however, you’ll need to understand the local laws and regulations on short-term rentals. We can help you identify suitable markets with investment potential.
 
 
WE’RE HERE TO HELP
 
Ready to calculate your personal net worth? Contact us for an easy-to-use worksheet and to find out your home’s current value. And if you want to learn more about growing your net worth through real estate, we can schedule a free consultation to answer your questions and explore your options. Whether you’re hoping to maximize the value of your current home or invest in a new property, we’re here to help you achieve your real estate goals.
 
 
The above references an opinion and is for informational purposes only.  It is not intended to be financial advice. Consult the appropriate professionals for advice regarding your individual needs.
 
 
Sources:
 
  1. Financial Post -
    https://financialpost.com/real-estate/canadian-home-sales-prices-surge-to-new-record-in-march
  2. Forbes -
    https://www.forbes.com/advisor/investing/what-is-net-worth/
  3. Global Property Guide -
    https://www.globalpropertyguide.com/North-America/Canada/Price-History
  4. Canadian Real Estate Association -
    https://creastats.crea.ca/en-CA/
  5. Trading Economics -
    https://tradingeconomics.com/canada/housing-index
  6. Canadian Apartment -
https://www.reminetwork.com/articles/hopeful-outlook-for-canadas-rental-market/
  1. MoneySense -
    https://www.moneysense.ca/spend/real-estate/is-now-the-time-to-buy-a-vacation-home/
     

5 Inspiring Home Design and Remodeling Trends for 2021

We’ve all spent a lot more time at home over the past year. And for many of us, our homes have become our office, our classroom, our gym—and most importantly, our safe haven during times of uncertainty. So it’s no surprise to see that design trends for 2021 revolve around soothing colour palettes, cozy character, and quiet retreats.
 
Even if you don’t have immediate plans to buy or sell your home, we advise our clients to be mindful of modern design preferences when planning a remodel or even redecorating. Over-personalized or unpopular renovations could lower your property’s value. And selecting out-of-style fixtures and finishes could cause your home to feel dated quickly.
 
To help inspire your design projects this year, we’ve rounded up five of the hottest trends.  Keep in mind, not all of these will work well in every house. If you plan to buy, list, or renovate your property, give us a call. We can help you realize your vision and maximize the impact of your investment.
 
 
1. Uplifting Colours
 
Colours are gravitating toward warm and happy shades that convey a sense of coziness, comfort, and wellbeing. This year’s palettes draw from earthy hues, warm neutrals, and soothing blues and greens.1
 
While white and gray are still safe options, expect to see alternative neutrals become increasingly popular choices for walls, cabinets, and furnishings in 2021. For a fresh and sophisticated look, try one of these 2021 paint colours of the year:
 

  • Aegean Teal (coastal blue) by Benjamin Moore
  • Urbane Bronze (brownish-gray) by Sherwin-Williams
  • Soft Candlelight (muted yellow) by Valspar
 
On the opposite end of the spectrum, indigo, ruby, sapphire and plum are showing up on everything from fireplace mantels and floating shelves to fabrics and home accessories. These classic, rich hues can help bring warmth, depth, and a touch of luxury to your living space.
 
To incorporate these colours, designers recommend using the “60-30-10 Rule.” Basically, choose a dominant colour to cover 60% of your room. For example, your walls, rugs, and sofa might all be varying shades of beige or gray. Then layer in a secondary colour for 30% of the room. This might include draperies and accent furniture. Finally, select an accent colour for 10% of your room, which can be showcased through artwork and accessories.2
 

 
2. Curated Collections
 
After a decade of minimalism, there’s been a shift towards highly-decorative and personalized interiors that incorporate more colour, texture, and character. Clearly-defined styles (e.g., mid-century modern, industrial, modern farmhouse) are being replaced by a curated look, with furnishings, fixtures, and accessories that appear to have been collected over time.3
 
This trend has extended to the kitchen, where atmosphere has become as important as functionality. The ubiquitous all-white kitchen is fading in popularity as homeowners opt for unique touches that help individualize their space. If you’re planning a kitchen remodel, consider mixing in other neutrals—like gray, black, and light wood—for a more custom, pieced-together look. And instead of a subway tile backsplash, check out zellige tile (i.e., handmade, square Moroccan tiles) for a modern alternative with old-world flair.4
 

 
3. Reimagined Living Spaces
 
The pandemic forced many of us to rethink our home design. From multipurpose rooms to converted closets to backyard cottages, we’ve had to find creative ways to manage virtual meetings and school. And designers expect these changes to impact the way we live and work for years to come.
 
For example, some home builders are predicting the end of open-concept floor plans as we know them.5 Instead, buyers are searching for cozier spaces with more separation and privacy. Cue the return of walls and, in some cases, alcoves and sliding partitions that enable homeowners to section off rooms as needed.6
 
The necessity of a home office space is also here to stay. But what if you don’t have a dedicated room? Alternative workspaces have become increasingly popular. In fact, one of the biggest trends on Pinterest this year is the “cloffice”—essentially a spare closet turned home office. Searches for “home library design” and “bookshelf room divider” are on the rise, as well.7
 

 
4. Staycation-Worthy Retreats
 
With travel options limited right now, more homeowners are turning their vacation budgets into staycation budgets.8 Essentially, recreate the resort experience at home—and enjoy it 365 days a year!
 
Bedrooms should provide a soothing sanctuary for rest and relaxation. But this year, minimalist decor and muted colors are giving way to bolder statement pieces.3 To create a “boutique hotel” look in your own bedroom, start with a large, upholstered headboard in a rich color or pattern. Layer on organic linen bedding and a chunky wool throw, then complete the look with a pair of matching bedside wall lights.9
 
Carry those vacation-vibes into your bathroom with some of the top luxury upgrades for 2021. Try a large, zero-entry shower for two, a floating vanity with hand-free faucets, or a radiant-heated floor for the ultimate spa-like experience.10
 

 
5. Outdoor Upgrades
 
From exercise to gardening to safer options for entertaining, the pandemic has led homeowners to utilize their outdoor spaces more than ever. In fact, backyard swimming pool sales skyrocketed in 2020, with many installers reporting unprecedented demand.11 But a new pool isn’t the only way homeowners can elevate their outdoor area this year.
 
Composite decks have become a favorite upgrade for their low-maintenance and durability. And in 2021, creative design elements are on the rise, including unique inlays, wider planks, and multiple deck board colors. Add stair or bistro lights for a touch of ambiance while enhancing safety and visibility.8
 

 
DESIGNED TO SELL
 
Are you contemplating a remodel? Want to find out how upgrades could impact the value of your home? Buyer preferences vary greatly by neighbourhood and price range. We can share our insights and offer tips on how to maximize the return on your investment. And if you’re in the market to sell, we can run a Comparative Market Analysis on your home to find out how it compares to others in the area. Contact us to schedule a free consultation!
 
 
Sources:
  1. HGTV Canada –
    https://www.hgtv.ca/decorating/photos/home-design-trends-for-2021-1942419/#
  2. The Spruce –
https://www.thespruce.com/timeless-color-rule-797859
  1. The Kit -
    https://thekit.ca/life/home/home-decor-trends-2021-inspiration/
  2. Houzz –
https://www.houzz.com/magazine/36-home-design-trends-ready-for-takeoff-in-2021-stsetivw-vs~142229851
  1. Zillow -
    https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/the-end-of-open-floor-plans-how-homes-will-look-different-after-coronavirus-301080662.html
  2. HGTV Canada -
    https://www.hgtv.ca/shows/family-home-overhaul/photos/the-top-design-trends-for-2021-according-to-hgtv-canada-design-experts-1943092/#currentSlide=5
  3. Pinterest -
    https://business.pinterest.com/content/pinterest-predicts/more-door/
  4. Canadian Contractor -
    https://www.canadiancontractor.ca/buildwire/decking-trends-for-2021/
  5. Homes & Gardens –
    https://www.homesandgardens.com/spaces/decorating/bedroom-trends-224944
  6. Canadian Interiors -
    https://www.canadianinteriors.com/2020/11/26/top-trends-to-impact-kitchen-and-bathroom-design-over-the-next-three-years-nkba/
  7. CTV News -
    https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/backyard-pool-sales-surge-during-the-covid-19-pandemic-1.4957596