Be Aware Of What Your Are Signing Before Buying a House in London Ontario

Before  buying a house in London Ontario, be aware of what you are signing !

Signing buyer agency in London Ontario

                                           Why is That?

Most real estate agents may want you to sign a Buyer Agency Agreement because without a written agreement, there are no guarantees the Realtor who finds you your new home will get paid.

Most agency agreements say, in effect, that the Realtor will help you find a place, and you agree not to work with any other real estate agents during your search. That’s like someone asking you to get married and you haven’t even had your first date yet!

Now, after reading this, hopefully  you will know enough to maybe go out with this Realtor on at least one date (viewing a few homes).  Still, you may feel uncomfortable signing a contract that obligates you to this Realtor until you buy or die.

How can you handle it?

In Ontario, licensing laws require that you acknowledge receipt of a copy of The Buyer Agency Agreement which explains fully what you are signing.  Who represents whom in the transaction?

I  think it is very important that you understand what it is that you sign, and  keep in mind, this form is written by RECO (Real Estate Council of Ontario), and there is a lot of language in there to ensure that when you buy a home, that Realtor will get paid, either by you or by the seller.

Also, keep in mind that you are free to negotiate changes any of the boilerplate language if there are terms or conditions you can’t live with

working with a Realtor in London Ontario

      Here are some of the major issues it will include:

  • How much does the broker charge and how is that paid?  In Ontario, the sellers usually pay the brokerage fees, and I’ve even heard Realtor’s telling people that their services to buyers are “free”.  Not quite.  If the listing company has negotiated a payment from the seller (called a “co-op” commission) to your Realtor of less than the amount of the fee he or she charges, the agreement may say that you must make up the difference.  In other words, if your agreement calls for a 3% payment, and the co-op commission is only 2.5%, you may have to write a cheque for the difference at settlement.
  • Does the buyer broker charge an up-front contingency fee?  If so, how much is it?  Is it refundable under any circumstances?  Is it credited back to you at closing toward your down payment and closing costs?  This is one way that a Realtor can help weed out real buyers from tire kickers, and it’s becoming more customary.
  • How long is the term of the agreement?  If you are not sure you want to enter into something long-term, and if the Realtor  insists that you have to sign something, make it a week or so.  You can extend your contract at the end of that time – assuming the Realtor is doing a good job and you both want to continue the relationship.
  • What geographical area does it cover? 
  • What type of property?
  • Is it possible for you to break up once you’ve signed on the dotted line?  If it turns out that you’ve made a mistake and don’t want to work with that Realtor after all, how do you get out of it?  Most brokerages will let you out, but they don’t have to make it easy for you, unless you have included language that lets you terminate.

Make every word count

When a good Realtor enters into a buyer brokerage agreement with a new client, they know that they have to earn the trust and loyalty that the agency agreement represents.  But the agreement has got to be more than a piece of paper.  And there will be important elements of the relationship that can’t be written into a boiler-plate contract.

 Some questions to ask


How To Price a Home To Sell in London Ontario

How to price a home in London Ontario to sell is what every home owner  wants to realize and to receive as much money as possible when selling their home.  The natural inclination is to price the home a little higher, thinking they can always come down later if need be or that buyers are going to offer less anyway.

Get Your House Sold in London Ontario

But listing your house in London Ontario at a price that is too high frequently nets the seller LESS money than an original price at market value.  Why is this?  Because, when most people looking for homes in your price range, they will reject your home in favour of other homes in a reasonable price range.

Buyers know prices, they may have already been in 6-10 homes, they can compare and in the long run, the buyer will decide if your home is priced right! No offers on your house after 30 days, what do you think the reason was?

So you price your home high, thinking you can come down.  Problem is, the Realtor and buyer community don’t look at it that way.  They see it as an overpriced house.  After a few weeks go by, a few open houses, signs, agent tours and not a nibble.

Finally, in order to attract attention back to your home, you’ve reduced your home price more than you ever thought you would, and you’re now netting much less than if you had priced it correctly in the beginning.

And think about this:  The money you lost is not just the lower sales price, but all the extra interest you paid on your mortgage…all the extra property taxes and other carrying costs that accrue while your home is waiting to sell.  I’ve seen it happen time and again!

I call it chasing the market or to be subtle, like falling off a cliff in the night, you know you are going to hit the bottom but you don’t know when!

Real Estate Fact: The Seller Is Solely Responsible For How Much, and How Quickly Their Home Sells!

                    pricing your home in London  too high

Overpricing almost always increases time to sell, and adds to your carrying costs.  The most common mistakes home sellers  make when choosing a price.

  • Not choosing the right price when a property is first listed. In other words, thinking “We can always come down”.
  • Putting the property on the market at an unrealistic price. A property must be priced on a comparative basis to the other properties which are similar. (I should add, everyone thinks their home is different but buyers and their agent doesn’t think so.)
  • Not relating marketing time to price. Generally, the quicker you want to sell, the less you should be willing to take.
  • Thinking that buyers aren’t comparing your home, on a dollar-for-dollar basis, with every other home on the market

​Below are some questions you may want to get answers to. The quality of your questions will dictate how soon and for how much your home will sell.                  

  • How to set the asking price to maximize the exposure of your home and end up with a profitable sale?
  • How to define and compare market value between homes?
  • How the total market performance may affect your home sale –  the positives & negatives?
  • How to handle buyers during any showing to help yield the highest price?

  Also, with this information, you’ll never pay too much for any home you buy for the rest of your life.

Wortley Village Old South Jazz Festival

Wortley Village

jazz   ​& blues festival

Sunday, August 28, 2016.

1 day event: August 28, 2016.
9 live bands featuring local musicians!
7 hours of entertainment!
4 Stages!
​Admission by donation.
Bring a lawn chair. Hope for sun! Expect to be entertained!

More info

This is a great street venue to people watch, dog watch, do a jig if you want, shake the hips or your lips, have a drink, a bite to eat, meet some new people

Westmount London Ontario Real Estate


Westmount London Ontario Real Estate Stats

Westmount London Ontario Real Estate so far in 2016

 114 houses sold through MLS in the Westmount neighbourhood of London Ontario from January 1, 2016 to August 26, 2016 for $391,309 which was 99% of the asking price and these took about 26 days to sell.

However, 18 houses did not sell and were either re-listed or taken off the market! The way the current real estate market is in London Ontario, a house not selling is the responsibility of two people, the Realtor or the home owner or both. If a house does not have an offer after 30 days, something is wrong!

64 condos changed hands at an average price of $201,963 for 98% of their asking price and were on the real estate market for 34 days.

City of London profile of the Westmount Neighbourhood

In 2015, 160 houses sold in Westmount in south west London Ontario through MLS for an average selling price of $378,515 which was 98% of the asking price and these took about 33 days to sell.

107 condos in Westmount were sold through our MLS system for an average price $185,872 and took on average 42 days to sell.

A caution here about the average condo price in Westmount. Of the 107 condos sold, the lowest was a walk up at $88,000 and the highest was a one floor bungalow style at $347,900!


map of Westmount in London Ontario

 More London Ontario Neighbourhoods

Extra Costs When Buying an Investment Property in London Ontario

Buying an investment property in London Ontario & area  costs more than the offer you make on the property. There are numerous other expenses that will add to the amount that you should take into account.. This purchase price checklist outlines most of the costs you can expect if not all.

Please note that they can vary by province and are subject to change.

extra costs when buying an investment property

Purchase Price
The starting point in your calculation… if you’re like most , you’ll need a mortgage for the majority of the purchase price and you should really shop around for a mortgage, not only for the rate but other fees that they could charge you on top of the mortgage.

Last week I had a client who has an accepted offer on a $420,000 property and the difference in fees between three of the top lenders was $1683.00! Their rates were basically the same. She saved the $1683.00 of course!

Lawyer’s Fees
Fees vary from law firm to law firm.  As we work daily with quite a few lawyers I see not only that their fees vary, even disbursements vary!  How that can be when the disbursements are written in stone ?  Because most investors do not know what the disbursements should be, yet nickle dime a purchase over $100!

Land Transfer Tax
Is a tax payable to the Provincial of Ontario by the purchaser upon the transfer of title from a seller. This amount is usually not expected by most investors. It can be sizeable. The amount varies  and is generally a percentage of your purchase price. I can advise you, of the exact fee based on purchase price.

Registration Fees
Fees paid to the provincial government for recording a title transfer, mortgage registration or other instrument such as an Assignment or lien with the local authorities. (Disbursements)

High Ratio Insurance
Must be purchased if you are buying a property for less than 20% down. A sliding fee scale applies, depending on the percentage of the purchase price required in a first mortgage (some minor exceptions) which can be added to the mortgage

investing in real estate London Ontario

Compliance Letter
Obtained by your lawyer and required in many municipalities throughout Canada before a property transfer can take place. This is an acknowledgment from the building department that the property either has, or is clear of outstanding work-orders.

Work-orders are specific clean-up or fix-up requirements that the owner is legally required to do, and which must be completed before ownership can be transferred.

Tax Certificate
Obtained by your lawyer at the time of sale to confirm that local taxes have been paid and are up-to-date. If they are not up to date, the seller is required to pay them from the proceeds of the sale. If there are insufficient proceeds, then you may be legally required to pay the outstanding taxes. If, on the other hand, taxes have been prepaid, you may have to compensate the seller for them.

Mortgage Appraisal and Application Fees
Application fees apply on high ratio mortgages only while appraisal fees are common to most mortgages. Generally $150 — $235 each would apply.

Home Inspection
A report commissioned by a property owner or purchaser, usually to verify the condition of a property prior to the “firming up” of a purchase agreement. The scope and detail may vary, but most reports outline any particular problems and associated repair costs. Unfortunately, no licensing is required, and this service is not specifically regulated other than by general consumer protection legislation.

The best safeguard against inadequate work is to ask me who I can refer you to people who stand by their work, whom we have used and those we have fired because of incompetence or lack of care.

get a home inspection on investment properties

Land Survey
The legal written and/or mapped description of the location and dimensions of your land. The survey should also show the dimensions and placement on the lot of any structure, including additions such as pools, sheds and fences. An up-to-date survey is often required by a lender as part of the mortgage transaction, although the practice of Title Insurance as enough is becoming more prevalent in almost 98% of cases.

Title Insurance
Over the last few years is the introduction of title insurance into the real estate buying process. Title insurance can be purchased by home buyers to protect against potential deficiencies in a number of areas, such as the land survey. There are numerous benefits to this product, and you should consult your lawyer.

Connection Charges
Some local utility companies (hydro, gas, oil) charge a fee on closing to connect new buyers up to their service. More common, however, is an extra charge on the first billing.

Property Tax and Prepaid Utilities Adjustments
If the previous owner prepaid property taxes or other utilities, they will be credited the prepaid portion on closing. If they paid all their taxes by April, expect a large adjustment cost on closing!

Envelope Real Estate for information

Regulation Fees:

City Liscence, City Landlord Fee, an ESA Report and a Fire Marshall’s report, zoning (?), and a myriad of costs that most do not eeven think about.

One of the first things I do when first working with a client is go over all fees or costs so that you know what you are getting into, plus, no more worrying or fretting how you are going to come up with the money.

All our clients are well prepared, that is why they save money, time and hassles. If you want to be a client of ours, lets meet and discuss the options.

Sunningdale Houses & Condos London Ontario

             Sunningdale London Ontario real estate sales

Sunningdale Houses & Condos London Ontario

2016 Numbers

55 houses in Sunningdale  in North London Ontario were sold from January 1, 2016 to August 24, 2016 for an average sale price of $642,988 which was 98.3% of the asking price  and these took about 59 days to change hands!

19  Sunningdale condos were sold through our local MLS real estate board in the same period for an average $383,007 which was 99.1% of the asking price and on average, took 61 days to sell.

Top 10 Houses & condos for sale in Sunningdale

Sometimes I may choose 10 but sometimes I find I am not able to because of price or condition. So instead of the Top 10, there could be 9 or at times only 6.

My Top 10 Houses & Condos For Sale in Sunningdale

In 2015

  75 houses were sold on MLS in 2015 for an average price of $618,674 which was 98% of the asking price and these were on the market an average 68 days!

  19 condos changed hands at an average price of $368,408 and these were on the market an average 50 days and sold for 2% less than the asking price!

            one floor condo in Sunningdale in North London          A beautiful Sunningdale home in North London

    The Sunningdale neighbourhood is located in North London bordered by Fanshawe Park Road West, Richmond Street, Sunningdale Road West and Hyde Park Road and includes Medway Park and Hyland Estates.

   A very short drive to the Masonville shopping area and dining and the big box stores in Hyde Park. Easy access to the University of Western Ontario (UWO or Western), it’s hospital and nearby  research centre.

    5 minutes to downtown London and quick access to great beaches along Lake Huron such as Ipperwash, Pinery Provincial Park, Grand Bend, Bayfield and Goderich.

  The houses and condos in Sunningdale are tastefully laid out with many enclaves and one of a kind homes.


 here is all the MLS listings in London, including Sunningdale.

Sunningdale London  OntarioArea Map

Other London Neigbourhoods

Summerside London Ontario Real Estate

71 houses have sold in the Summerside neighbourhood of London Onatrio from January 1, 2016 to September 23, 2016 for $317,690 which almost was the asking price and these sold within an average 24 days!

19 condos were sold for an average price of $223,831, these took about 29 days to sell and sold for 98% of the asking price.

Top 10 Houses & Condos For Sale in Summerside London Ontario

Here are my Top 10 houses & condos for sale in Summerside in London Ontario

 In 2015, the Summerside neighbourhood in London Ontario , on our local MLS system, 89 houses changed hands for an average price of $287,713 which was 98% of the asking price and these houses were on the market for an average 44 days.

18 condos were sold as well, with an average price of $216,688 which was 99% of the asking price and these condos took on average 35 days to sell!

Summerside Houses for sale London Ontario

2014 Activity

Summerside London Ontario Real Estate was very active in 2014 with 88 houses being sold along with 20 condos.

The average sold price for a house in Summerside in south London that sold was $291,656 and these were on the market an average 45 days. The condos were on the market an average 62 days and sold on average $211,405, both houses & condos in Summerside London sold for about 98% of the asking price.

Summerside London is a great neighbourhood for families as it has a great quick access to highway 401 and Veterans Memorial Parkway, making the commute to work that much less driving time!

Summerside is one of London Ontario’s newer communities and is located in  the South East of London, East of Highbury, north of the 401, West of Veterans Memorial Parkway (Airport Road) and south on Commissioners Road East.

Summerside  has been growing at London’s southeast edge of the city for about 14 years or so. Summerside holds a lot of appeal for those who wish to live in London, but whose work carries them to neighbouring communities such as St. Thomas, Ingersoll or Woodstock or quick access to Highway 401.

It is a popular area for younger families as house prices are attractive.  This community offers single family houses, condo townhouses, attached and de-tached condo bungalows and a gated condo corporation. There are houses being built all the time and the resale market is vibrant!

Plenty of shopping, schools and churches  nearby.

Summerside  London Ontario Map  Houses & Condos


Other London Neigbourhoods

Houses in Oakridge London Ontario are Selling

201 houses in Oakridge have sold from January 1, 2016 to August 22, 2016  through our local MLS for an average price of $353,208 which was 99.8% of the asking price and these took about 19 days to sell. Unfortunately for 21 house owners in Oakridge, their houses did not sell or were re-listed again.

At present there are 36 houses for sale in Oakridge Acres, Oakridge Meadows & Oakridge Park.

In the same period, 78 condos changed hands, for 99.7% of the asking $246,295 price and on the market 27 days! 6 condos did not sell or were re-listed .

What do these numbers indicate? There are buyers willing to buy and seller’s who price their homes at the market price will get 99-101% of their asking price. Pretty simple, yet, I hear of buyers who think they can  get 10-15% off the asking price and a few misquided sellers who think their home is worth more than the other homes that have sold in their neighbourhood!

buying a house in Oakridge London Ontario

In 2015

255  houses in Oakridge in London Ontario sold through our MLS system for an average $326,740 which was 99% of the asking price and these were on the market less tan 30 days

110 condos in Oakridge sold in the same period for an average $228.046 which was 98.1% of the asking prices and these condos took 38 days to sell on average.

More and more people are returning to their roots, buying these homes in Oakridge where they grew up, having large, deep lots and renovating them to meet their aging lifestyles. I have had many clients buy these 60’s and 70’s homes and upgrade them with modern kitchens, larger bedrooms and bathrooms.

Oakridge  Acres and Oakridge Meadows is an older neighbourhood in west London (with a few small patches of 10 year old or less homes) with large lots, mature trees and very few cookie cutter streets.

As with any market, some Oakridge homes sold in 2-5 days while some are still languishing on the market. Again, numbers do not lie; a successful real estate sale leaves clues as does homes that are not selling.

Oakridge London Ontario Real Estate Map

Other London Neigbourhoods

Uplands Neighbourhood in London Ontario

73 houses have sold in the Uplands neighbourhood in London Ontario from January 1, 2016 to August 21, 2016 for an average $472,958 which was 99.2% of the asking price and took about 30 days to sell.

However, 22 houses did not sell and were either relisted or taken off the market. As well, of the 21 houses in Uplands that are currently listed for sale on MLS, 11 of them have been on the market for over the 30 day average.

Why do you think that is? As a professional Realtor who sees lots of houses in London , I know why and the buyers & their sales person of the 73 houses that did sell know as well!

house sales in Uplands in London Ontario

32 condos have sold so far for an average $306,130 and were on the market for about 39 days & sold for about 98.6% of the asking price. At present there are 9 condos in Uplands for sale and unfortunately fot a few condo sellers, 8 of them in fact, did not sell or had to be-re-listed and put on the market again.

Top 10 Homes for sale in Uplands London Ontario

 Here are the Top 10 Houses or Condos For Sale in Uplands

In 2015,  97 houses changed hands in Uplands in North London on the MLS system and 42 condos. The houses took 40 days & 40 nights to sell for 98% of the asking price of $452,871 and the  condos took an average 57 days to sell  for 98% of the $319,004 asking price!

Uplands  is located in the north end of London and is bounded by Richmond Street to the west, Sunningdale Road to the south, Adelaide Street North to the east and London municipal boundary to the north.

Uplands London Ontario Real Estate Information

  Uplands is a relatively newer area of London with a great cross section of executive style homes, one floor bungalows and a great selection of one floor condo homes, both attached and detached.

Living in Uplands is convenient to major shopping, churches, schools, dining, golf courses and other recreation venues and attractions.

Other London Neigbourhoods

Lambeth Talbot Village Neighbourhood in London Ontario

Lambeth Talbot Village Houses

101 houses in Lambeth, Talbot Village neighbourhood in London Ontario were sold from January 1, 2016 to August 20, 2016 at an average price of $430,961 and these were on the market an average 39 days and sold very close to the asking price! Unfortunately, 12 houses in Talbot Village, Westwinds and Lambeth did not sell and at present, there are 27 houses in Lambeth for sale.

3 condos in this neighbourhood were sold for an average $436,125 as per our local MLS.  These took about 18 days to sell! There are two condos in Talbot Village for sale but have been on the market since April 2016.

  In 2015

113 houses changed hands in Lambeth and  Talbot Village neighbourhood in south London in 2015 for an average price of $447,162 and sold for 97% of the asking price and took on average 44 days to sell!

In the same period, 8 condos sold at an average price of $380,475 which was 2% less than the asking price and were on the market an average 60 days.

 In 2014

2014 was quite active for Lambeth houses and condos with 119 houses exchanging hands for an average price of $412,343 and these sold for 97% of the asking price and sold within 42 days!

9 condos sold in the Talbot Village area at an average $395,333 and these were on the market an average 59 days and sold for 99% of the asking price.

 More London Ontario Neighbourhoods