Open House - The Real Estate & Mortgage Show

Real Estate and Mortgage Answers

CFRA_Open_HouseEvery Saturday morning at 11 AM, Paul Rushforth and mortgage broker Frank Napolitano join CFRA's Steve Gregory on Open House.

They provide expert answers to real estate and mortgage questions from people just like you. You'll find plenty of information on how the market is doing and why, and they also have plenty of fun along the way!

Whether you're new to real estate or have plenty of experience already, you'll find the latest updates you need to prepare for your next home purchase or sale.

You can play the episodes by following the link below, or click here to get a list of transcripts.

Listen to Episodes of Open House Online

Highlights From Recent Episodes

Here are some highlights from past episodes. If you'd like to listen to the episode, visit the podcasts page.

December 1, 2018: Writing an MLS Listing, and Making a Down Payment for the First Time

Dora B. joined Frank and Steve in-studio for one of the last shows of 2018!

Wording Matters on MLS Listings

When it comes to writing up your home’s MLS listing, choosing the right words matters. A phrase as common as ‘cosmetic changes’ can mean a lot to different people, and even cause the bank or lender to require closer looks. That’s why it’s so important to work with a realtor who knows how to market your property the right way.

18% of First Time Home Buyers Are Gifted Their Downpayment

As rates have increased over the year, Frank shared some rather surprising stats about first time home buyers. Due to the stress test introduced in January, there’s been an increase in first time home buyers using monetary gifts for down payments.

It was reported that 18% of first time home buyers are using gifts from parents or family members as a way to afford to purchase a home.

Frank’s hope is that since rates are increasing, adjustments to the stress test will be made, giving back some buying power to Ontarians.

November 24, 2018: Decorating for Christmas and Pre-Approvals

We only have a few more shows of 2018, and Barb stopped in to chat with Paul and Steve.

Don’t Overdo it on the Christmas Decorations

If you’re selling your home this holiday season, Paul and his team advise you to keep the decorations at a minimum. Too many decorations (especially inside) can make the space look cluttered - and that can turn off prospective buyers.

Remember, it’s fine to embrace the holiday decor, but buyers have to be able to visualize living in that house all year round.

Pre-Approval Rates Hold for 120 Days

Barb reminds us that pre-approval rates hold for 120 days. You have to take possession of a property in that time, otherwise you have to be approved again.

Pre-approvals are often higher than the rate you can actually get. Generally it’s the pre-approval rate plus the 2 points for the stress test. Make sure to speak with a mortgage broker about getting the best rate.

November 17, 2018: Professional Photos and How Credit Scores Affect Your Mortgage Rate

Paul, Steve and Frank celebrated Frank’s birthday by talking about the importance of presenting your home, and how a credit score can affect your mortgage rates come renewal time.

Professional Photos Make a Difference

Paul shared a story about a recent listing his company took over that was originally for sale by the owner. All they did was take professional photos, and the home sold in two days. Previously, it had poor quality photos and sat on the market for months.

This is just another example of how professional photos are so important to a successful home sale - and now that there’s snow on the ground, make sure to get an exterior shot that keeps your listing up to date.

How a Credit Score Affects Your Mortgage Rate

One caller asked Frank how credit scores affect your mortgage rate. The better your credit score, the better rates you’re able to get. Frank explained that many people have better scores than they think, and it’s important to be aware of where you stand.

In general, when you renew your mortgage as is, your credit score won’t be a contributing factor. However, if you’re changing something about your mortgage - i.e. closing a home equity line of credit - your credit score will be factored in.

If you have more questions, it’s recommended you talk to a mortgage broker.

Contribute to Our Holiday Angel Trees

At both our Orleans and Kanata offices, we have Angel Trees. Whether you’re a client or not, we invite you to come in and take a gift tag from our angel tree. Each tag has information for a child, and you can buy them a present. Bring the present unwrapped and the tag back to our office, and the present will go to that child through the Orleans Cumberland Resource Centre.

November 10, 2018: Sales Up 11.8% in October, and Using a Listing Agent

Paul called in from Montreal to join Frank and Steve in Ottawa for this week’s show - and he had some great news to share.

Ottawa’s Home Sales Up 11.8% in October

Paul shared the numbers for October 2018’s real estate market - and their awesome. The stand-out figure is the 11.8% increase in home sales from October 2017.

“Ottawa hit a home-run,” Steve says, nicely summing up the stellar results of the busy fall month.

Most of this growth is thanks to the condo market, which is recovering nicely from the multi-year slump we experienced not long ago.

You can check out all the October numbers here >

When You List Yourself, You’re Going to End Up Paying

Using the example of a Nepean house listed in Kanata, Paul took a few moments to remind listeners who crucial it is to work with a listing agent.

Many people are trying to save money when they sell themselves - but as a buying agent’s commission comes out of the sale, you’ll actually be paying someone to negotiate against you - so how much are you really saving?

There are many benefits to working with a listing agent - not just pricing >

November 3, 2018: Keep Your Lights on and Remove Your Personal Items

Paul, Frank, and Steve spent the last day of Daylights Savings talking about important things you need to do to show your house this time of year.

Make Sure You Turn the Lights On

Now that it gets dark earlier, chances are buyers will be viewing your home after the sun goes down.

Paul advises all sellers to turn on their lights before a buyer and agent arrive for a showing. You know best where the lights are, and you want to give the impression of a warm, welcoming house before someone even steps in the door.

Your Home Shouldn’t Look Like Your Home When Selling

Personal items will not help buyers visualize themselves in your home. Therefore, you should remove personal photographs, knick knacks, and anything else that could distract buyers from the house itself. This includes smells!

Tip: When you sell your home and start taking artwork and shelves off the wall, you should patch any visible holes.

Open House Transcripts

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