Edmonton, AB Real Estate News

By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Wow! What a hectic few weeks. Ronan and I got to spend a delicious week with our family - what fun! He actually took the picture I've used for this blog - not bad for a two year old...The only downside of holidays is the amount of work you come back to after one. I'm busy catching up still.Yesterday as I was driving I heard Andre Agassi on CBC radio. I was only able to hear a short clip but what I heard was wonderful. Andre was asked how young people can be successful and he said by defining what your idea of success is.Before you take any step in any direction you must decide what YOU require to feel successful. Not your mom, not your dad, not what anyone else says is success but what you determine. By doing so you will save yourself a lot of frustration, disappointment and perhaps fee...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Harper Government Strengthens Canada's longterm economic plan - "Our government is investing in science and technology to strengthen the economy and improve the quality of life of Canadians,""This significant investment will help develop, attract and retain the world's best researchers at Canadian universities while strengthening Canada's long-term economic competitiveness." Minister of State Goodyear "Tomorrow's prosperity depends on our ability to compete within a diverse, global economy — to get there, we need to start with competitive infrastructure," "World-class facilities are a magnet for global talent, and these funds make a tremendous difference in researchers' capacity to conduct leading-edge interdisciplinary research and discovery learning." Dr. Indira Samarasekera, Presiden...
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By Jason Thomas
(Royal LePage Summit)
Edmonton housing bubble? There is a recent study from Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives that suggests that Edmonton is in a housing bubble.  The article states that our prices should be a lot lower based on an inflation adjustment from the prices housing here in the period of 1980 to 2000.  Here are my 2 cents on the issue. The main flaw in this study is that it bases todays values on housing values from the 80's and 90's.  In the 80's and 90's Edmonton real estate was severely depressed in relation to the rest of Canada.  Edmonton was hit by two shocks.  The National Energy Policy of the early 80's and then Premier Klein's cutbacks in the early 1990's (which I believe was necessary to get our debt and deficit problems under control).  These political changes caused a severe negat...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Dear Friends and Partners,  This past weekend was the opposite of spending time in the jungle getting your head shrunk, it was investing your time in the city getting your head s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d. I was at the REIN Multi-family investing event with many of you and had a fantastic time. For those that didn't get a chance to attend, you missed out seeing many dynamic speakers and some timely information. We took a bus trip around Edmonton, St. Albert and Beaumont where we heard the local mayors speak about the economic fundamentals of the towns. Even if these areas aren't your targets, it is always good to hear what is happening and get your feet on the ground.As the bus weaved its way through Edmonton, there were many neighborhoods we passed where our properties are within a minute's walk...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Isn't August an amazing month? I hope that you're feeling as energized as I am. There is so much to do; festivals to attend, BBQs to have, lakes to swim in and great properties to invest in! As you know this month we take a little time off to reconnect with ourselves, our family and the great outdoors. I'll be doing a canoeing trip in the Rockies with a wonderful friend that Danielle and I traveled throughout India with 12 years ago. In addition to that, my Mom will be out visiting for a few weeks. But enough about me... What will you be doing?
Never underestimate the value of taking time away from the usual to sit quietly and reflect, or to live out loud a wild adventure. In these moments you'll be fully engaged with yourself... And that is a precious and valuable thing indeed. So, enj...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Danielle wrote a great blog about Nutella and of our perception of the things around us. I'd add on to say that sometimes 'ethical' marketing can educate and aid to making better informed decisions. Of course the flip side is that unethical marketing or marketing that simply dupes us with information that isn't true, can trick us into buying, using or supporting somethings that we normally wouldn't. 

There is a real shift in client testimonials and word of mouth stories - and they're great, when they're true. We want to identify with folks like ourselves and generally trust our friends suggestions because we assume that they come with an added layer of due diligence. When you see the anti-oilsands ads, what do you think? When you get emails for dirt cheap, cash flow properties in the U...
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By Jason Thomas
(Royal LePage Summit)
The stats are out.  And, July was a slower month.   That is to be expected with summer holidays, but our sales were lower than normal.  We had 1294 sales in July and that is off our normal range of 1500-1800.  It is way off July of 2009's numbers of 2223, but last year was an exception.  2009 started with record low sale numbers due to the financial crisis and then turned sharply up with pent up demand that came through in the spring.  The inventory has finally crested at 8892 homes and condos for sale in the metro Edmonton area.  The inventory should continue to fall as homes sell and come off the market.  I've attached a graph showing the inventory and sales levels to put it into perspective.  Have a great summer!  
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By Jason Thomas
(Royal LePage Summit)
We are entering the summer doldrums.  Prices have flattened out this month.  We've actually seen a fall in prices in the condo and duplex market.  SFD $391,497 Up 0.4% from last month CONDO $242,644   Down 2.4% from last month DUPLEX/ROWHOUSE $306,905 Down 4.5% from last month. The big news is the inventory has risen.  We are up to 9406 properties for sale, combine that with 1539 sales last month and that translates into a 6.1 month supply of inventory.  6 months is the borderline between a buyers and a sellers market.  So, officially we are dipping into a buyer's market.  I expect to see our prices stabilizing and softening as we go into the fall.  This is a normal annual occurence, but the excess inventory may add to the softening.  The good news is that the inventory appears to be pe...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Todd and I were lucky to be in Edmonton to see the Streetfest this weekend. There were some amazing performances. We saw local hip hop dancers, a sword swallower and an juggler/acrobat named Mr. Spin. However, the most amazing of them all was Rudi Macaggi and Lea McGowan, whose acrobatic, balletic performance was truly amazing. They were so impressive that even my 2 year old son gave them a resounding round of applause!Read about their show here
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Dear Friends and Partners, I trust that you're enjoying your summer as much as I am. It's turning out to be a busy one as we take advantage of the long days to get the most out of renovating and upgrading units. You'll see a lot of home repair specials at stores like Rona and Home Depot now. Danielle bought a very economical, high efficiency, low flush toilet for only $119 for a basement suit. It worked out cheaper (this time) to buy the toilet on special, rather than using the contractor discount that we have.  Wait a little longer and you'll start to see all the specials on BBQs and lawn furniture too. We're in the process of upgrading a newly acquired 4-plex in the Prince Rupert area. One of the first jobs is to switch out the galvanized pipe to PEX tubing. You're probably thinking t...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Alberta in Growth mode says RBC - "Alberta's economic rebound is gaining strength this year amid stronger construction activity and a busier energy sector, according to a forecast by RBC Economics.""The recovery now looks to be taking shape, with a sharp rise in home building activity and renewed interest in the oil and gas sector combining to fuel growth in the province," RBC chief economist Craig Wright.You can feel "it" in the air in Edmonton. I talk to people everyday that are moving here for work and looking for a place to live. Everything points to a great year!Tarsands Output Set to Double - "Canada will produce more than twice the amount of crude derived from tarsands by 2025 compared with what experts predict the bitumen-rich zones will churn out in 2010.The Canadian Associatio...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
“I would never buy a property that didn’t have positive cash flow,” “A lot of people, unsophisticated investors, buy properties as if they were stocks – the only way they’re going to make money is if they rise in value.” Don R. Campbell, president of the Real Estate Investment Network. READ MOREEveryone says it and all investors forget. Then they learn a lesson that they never forget - negative cashflow will eat you like an alligator.
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By Jason Thomas
(Royal LePage Summit)
The official stats are out for May.  The market is moving more and more into a balanced market.  Prices have still climbed for single family houses (1% increase over April), but condos and duplexes fell (both by 2%).  Our inventory level has increased to 8780 properties which is higher than our peak last year.  Buyers are finding that they have a little more time to look, the average days on market is sitting at 44. The sales were off last years torrid pace of over 2200.  We were just shy of 1700 sales this month (1682).  The slowdown in sales could be attributed to the tightening of mortgage requirements that came in mid April. I've attached some price graphs for different property classes here.  
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Snow in June, well almost. That was the name of a famous TV show in Japan too. These sudden changes in the Alberta weather keep you on your toes.How about the changing market? Well, lots of action lately with multi-units being snapped up within days of being listed. There is a lot of pent up demand from both new and seasoned investors looking for the deals. One of the main reasons is the shift in attitude - folks are feeling more confident. And with confidence, comes improvement in the economy. But beyond there being just an attitudinal driver, you can start to see some of the projects coming back on track.I know of one $26M gas project that ground is breaking on next month... and that's 2 hours outside of Edmonton. North Central Edmonton: Cashflowing Tri-Plex In The Mature Area of Prin...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
We went to the Stanley L. Milner Library the other day filled with slight trepidation as a couple young girls had been attacked there less than a month before. We both commented on how beautiful and citizen friendly the downtown area would be if it could be "taken back".It looks like the City of Edmonton and ProCura Real Estate is ready to do just that. With plans to build a 708 unit Mayfair village in the downtown area."A lot of the things we're doing here can be done elsewhere. The game changer for Edmonton is about downtown, and Mayfair Village is a component of that. If we can change downtown, we can change Edmonton forever, and for the better." Randy Ferguson, ProCura's Edmonton-based COO Read More Programs like REACH will also work to taking downtown and giving it back to law abid...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
Todd went to the Free Rich Dad "How to Get Rich in Alberta" Event. The event which has suffered bad reviews, investigations and unfortunate sales tactics seemed like a good place to network.Overall his impression was that the event skims over a lot of ways to get wealthy but doesn't support with any real meat. It's all sizzle. Which is good if you want to keep people coming back for more but doesn't work for those who are looking for real information. The host, Darren Weeks, an Edmonton multi-millionaire, was partially aggressive and a little condescending - but that's what wealthy are like right? At least it's the way we expect them to be. We got a follow up direct marketing letter with some tips like; build your elevator speech, find a mentor and get a business card. Three excellent p...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
We spent the long weekend in Canmore, AB. It's a beautiful city with a 360 degree view of mountains. I'm sure I've been there before but it's a huge change after 10 years of Nikko, Japan. The MAGNITUDE is incredible. Canada is huge, the Rockie Mountains magnificent.So size does matter. Whether it's mountains to foothills or a huge portfolio to a few rentals. Certainly my style of management would change if I had less properties to take care of. Now my only hope is blocking parts of the city i.e I only visit NW properties today. This is a huge gas and time saver. Only an emergency would drag me anywhere else.
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
It's hard to imagine a labour shortage with unemployment at 6.6% but apparently there is one looming around the corner.Alberta braces for next labour squeeze - "A rebound in the oil patch is sparking fears of a labour shortage like the one that led to sky-high wages and mass importing of skilled tradespeople ...." “We are about to start running into, believe it or not, another labour shortage,” “It is going to be significant again,” says Brian Vaasjo, president of Capital Power Inc. As the need for labour increases so will the need for rental units as in-migration increases. A look at the current rental market in Edmonton would show a lot of selection at very competitive prices. This is going to slowly change. We're seeing a lot of "bids" on rental units. If we post at $1595 the prospec...
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By Todd and Danielle Millar, Nineteen years of excellence!
(Glenn Simon Inc.)
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