Holiday Thoughts

So now that everyone is thinking about friends and families and wondering how much to spend for Auntie Jane and Uncle Amir, do not forget about those struggling through this season because of loss, finances, mental health issues.

This is a difficult time for a lot of people so give where you can and reach out to anyone you think may need to see you for a cup of coffee.

While you are at it, check the batteries in your smoke alarm and co2 detector

Mayoral Race

Who ever is chosen for mayor of the Great City of Toronto will have to address a few major issues:
1. How are we going to maintain and expand transit;
2. How are we going to make this city truly world class;
3. How to get people engaged in their city;
4. How are we going to eliminate poverty and homelessness;
5. How are they going to work with City Council to achieve these and other ends.

These are big questions and of course can not be solved by one person in one term. Ask your municipal candidates how they are going to tackle these big issues or if they are even thinking of these issues.
In order to fund any of this, taxes will need to be raised or maintained, remember this. Perhaps the Land Transfer Tax is not going away any time soon.

Remember to support your local politicians, support the candidates you believe in by way of volunteering, donations and of course voting on October 27, 2014.

Home horrors in the GTA

Were to look for information on your house or condominium.

Here are some websites for the Greater Toronto Area:

Homeverified.ca

bedbugregistry.com

www.housecreep.com

Here is a great article by Mark Wiesleder on searching your home’s past:

http://www.thestar.com/business/personal_finance/2014/02/07/how_to_find_out_if_someone_died_in_the_house_you_want_to_buy_weisleder.html

**Please note that the information on these sites might not be updated, please check with your realtor and vendor about specific addresses.

Land Transfer Taxes & Tax Refunds (Toronto and Ontario)

Land Transfer Tax Refund for First-time Homebuyers

Ontario

http://www.rev.gov.on.ca/en/refund/newhome/index.html

Land Transfer Tax applies to all transfers of land in Ontario.

First-time homebuyers may be eligible for a refund of all or part of the tax. For transfers where: the agreement of purchase and sale was entered into after December 13, 2007, the refund applies to all homes, whether newly constructed or resale.

Applications for a refund must be made within 18 months after the date of the transfer.

The maximum amount of the refund is $2,000. The refund can be requested at the sale or directly from the Ministry of Finance. No interest is paid on this refund.
(For Toronto, the maximum refund is $3,725.00)

http://www.toronto.ca/taxes/mltt.htm#rebates

To claim a refund, you:

• must be at least 18 years of age;
• must occupy the home as your principal residence within 9 months of the date of transfer; and
• You and your spouse cannot have ever owned a home, or an interest in a home, anywhere in the world.

Ontario Land Transfer /Toronto (in bold) Formula

0.5% of the value of consideration for the transfer up to and including $55,000
1% of the value of the consideration which exceeds $55,000 up to and including $250,000 (to 400,000.00 for Toronto)
1.5% of the value of the consideration which exceeds $250,000* Only Ontario
2% of the amount by which the value of the consideration exceeds $400,000 (Toronto)

Example: House for $600,000 in Toronto would have the following transfer taxes

Toronto $7,725.00
Ontario $8,475.00
Total $16,200.00

Note: this is not intended as legal advice, please contact a lawyer for assistance with your residential purchase.

How do you know what you have?

Why wait until after the break in, fire, flood to write down the make, model and serial number number, and other important details of what you have. Do it now and protect yourself.

The link below, gives you several online ways to put this information about your personal property (tv, computers, cameras, dirt bikes, ATV, motorcycle, etc.)

http://www.ontariohomeowner.com/news/2375-do-you-know-what-you-own-tips-and-resources-for-home-inventory-documentation