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What is small scale multi-unit housing (SSMUH)?
Small-scale multi-unit housing, missing-middle housing, and infill housing are all terms that describe ground-oriented homes with multiple units that can fit into existing single-family neighborhoods.

What is the new SSMUH law passed by the Province of BC?
It is new legislation that requires all BC municipalities to amend their zoning bylaws to allow infill housing on single-family and duplex parcels. The Province requiresthat 4 housing units must be allowed on each urban serviced parcel larger than 280m2 (~3,000ft2 ) and 2 units on other lands. It has also set policy that must be considered in zoning, including regulation of: height, setbacks, off road parking, coverage, etc.

Why did the Province make these changes for increased density?
This is just one of several changes to deal with a “housing crisis” decades in the making and comprising of the following: increasing homeless population; increasing overall population; low rental vacancy rate; homes shifting to short term rentals and/or speculation; chronic lack of affordable housing; and unprecedented post-pandemic price increases.

What changes must the City of Salmon Arm complete by JUNE 30, 2024? The City must update its Zoning Bylaw to comply with the legislation by the end of June, 2024. The changes will enable up to 4 units on the vast majority of low density residential parcels, e.g.: a home with a suite and an accessory dwelling unit in the yard or a duplex with a secondary suite in each half. Smaller parcels < 280m2 in area will allow up to 3 units.

Will Council hold a public hearing? How do I submit input?
No: under the new BC law, Council is prohibited from holding a public hearing. While we will collect written input, the process is to “inform” you rather than asking “what do you think.” In the future the most appropriate way to provide input on residential uses and density would be through the Official Community Plan. Kindly note that Salmon Arm is currently engaging with the public on the City’s Official Community Plan update which is related to infill housing. Your input will help with this work.

Will this increase my property taxes or property value?
Since it is up to BC Assessment to set your assessment - which then determines your property taxes - it is unknown at present. BC Assessment has suggested that impact of these types of changes to property value may be minimal because broad zoning changes do not have a discernable impact on land value. For example, when a single property is zoned to allow 4 units, the value may increase as it is the only property with this density. But when almost all residential properties are zoned to allow 4 units, the value increase is minimal as it is universal (minimizing the added value to your specific property).

Will our infrastructure have capacity for the added housing density?
New infill development must be connected to water and sewer. Infrastructure requirements are identified and then resolved during the development permit and/or building permit approval processes. The City Engineering Department undertakes ongoing assessments to determine available capacity in the system and prioritizes plans for future upgrades. There may be parts of Salmon Arm where the system (sewer and/or water) may need to be installed or upgraded to support infill housing. The costs for this are typically paid by the developer. The City then maintains, operates and replaces these works. SMALL-SCALE MULTI-UNIT HOUSING FAQs February/2024 Photo of SSMUH from “Homes for People” Wharf Wastewater Lift Station June 30th

If I live in a dwelling on a bare-land strata, will this change my zoning?
The new zoning will apply to all eligible properties regardless of the type of subdivision that created the parcels in the zone. Strata corporations may make bylaws regarding the type of building that may be constructed on a bare land strata lot, and owners would need to comply with all strata bylaws.

How many housing units can I build on my property? When can I start construction?
At present, and until the Zoning Bylaw is amended, nothing has changed. When the Zoning Bylaw is complete (June 30th, 2024) property owners can then determine the detailed zoning regulations that will apply to their property. A building permit and in some cases development permit as well as registration under the Homeowners Protection Act may also be required. What about dwelling setbacks, heights, size, lot coverage? The provisions that regulate or limit “build-out” that are currently in effect in the Zoning Bylaw still apply but these will be examined as a part of the process. Council may or may not revise these. As a part of the legislation, the Province has established guidelines that the City must consider when regulating build-out via the Zoning Bylaw. The regulations must be reasonable and must support infill housing without effectively precluding it by significantly increasing setbacks or decreasing parcel coverage. Bylaw requirements for off-street parking for each dwelling unit must also considered. The Province has suggested that these be decreased.

Will the existing size limit of 90m2 (968ft2 ) for secondary suite & accessory dwelling units remain?
The Zoning Bylaw currently caps suite size; however, the unit may be within a much larger accessory building, especially on large parcels. The benefits and drawbacks to increasing this cap will be considered by Council as a part of the process. Neighbours may be concerned about excessively large buildings that block views and reduce greenspace - be they accessory suites or accessory storage buildings.

How could this change my neighbourhood?
With the changes, you are likely to see many housing forms other than traditional single family homes. How quickly the changes take place will be dependent on how many of your neighbours choose to take advantage of the new housing options that provincial legislation has enabled.

I have an illegal suite. Is it legal now?
No. Despite that zoning and density may enable your suite, you still require a building permit and occupancy certificate to ensure compliance with the BC Building Code. This protects you and your tenants. Note that this is the case even if you are paying extra for utilities and garbage/recycling.

Where can I find more information?
For Bylaw changes & Council reports go to and search “small scale multi-unit housing”
For more general info & background go to the BC Ministry of Housing:


BUYING Foreclosure Properties in BC - The Simplified Version

Today, we're going to talk about something called foreclosure properties in British Columbia. This is basically when someone can't pay back the money they borrowed to buy a house, so the bank or lender has to take over and sell the house to get their money back.

**Scroll down to the bottom for the simplified version

Understanding Foreclosure Properties - when someone can't pay their mortgage, the bank asks the court for permission to sell the house. This process is called foreclosure. The bank then takes control of selling the house, but the court has to approve everything to make sure it's fair.

Pricing and Negotiation -  When the bank sells the house, they have to make sure they're selling it for a fair price. This means they have to show the court that they've tried to sell it for the right amount of money.

Subject Conditions - when someone wants to buy a foreclosed house, they might have some conditions, like checking if the house is okay or getting a loan. But even if they agree on a price, the court still has to say it's okay.

"As Is, Where Is" Condition -  One important thing to know is that when you buy a foreclosed house, it's usually sold "as is, where is." This means the bank can't tell you much about the condition of the house, so you need to check it out yourself.

Application and Court Approval  - Once everyone agrees on the sale, the bank has to ask the court to approve it. They have to show the court all the details of the sale and why they think it's fair.

Public Disclosure -  All the information about the sale, like how much it's sold for, is made public. Other people can come to court and try to buy the house too.

Court Process and Approval At court - the judge looks at all the offers and picks the best one. But sometimes, if the offers aren't good enough, they might not approve any of them.

Vesting Order and Completion -  When everything's approved, the court gives something called a Vesting Order. This tells the court to transfer the house to the new owner and clear any debts on the property.

Buying a foreclosed house might seem tricky, but it's important to follow all these steps to make sure everything is fair and legal. It's a big responsibility, but it can also be a great opportunity to get a new home!



Where does the initial offer go for approval in the foreclosure process?

In the foreclosure process, the initial offer is sent to the lawyer for approval. The lawyer reviews the offer and may either accept it or suggest changes before sending it back to us. Upon acceptance by the lawyer, the buyer proceeds to address any remaining conditions. 

What occurs after we remove our subjects during the foreclosure process?

After removing subjects in the foreclosure process, a court date is scheduled. During the period leading up to this court date, usually 3-4 days prior, interested parties have the opportunity to submit additional offers. The lawyer overseeing the process determines this deadline and notifies us accordingly. If there are other offers, the original accepted offer also retains the option to submit a revised offer during this timeframe. At the court date, the judge reviews all offers and selects the one to accept, subsequently establishing a completion date.

If the judge chooses our offer what happens then?

After the deal is approved, the Court issues what's called a "Vesting Order." This order, given by the Court, instructs the Registrar to transfer the property title to the successful bidder. The Vesting Order also clears any financial limitations on the new owner's rights under the title. However, it doesn't remove non-financial limitations like access easements or restrictive covenants. Usually, completion and possession occur 14-30 days after court approval.

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? Email me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Salmon Arm BC
Message me: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:


BC Implements New Home Flipping Tax Effective January 1, 2025 - does it make sense?

BC Implements New Home Flipping Tax Effective January 1, 2025

Starting January 1, 2025, the BC home flipping tax will impact income generated from the sale of properties within British Columbia. Properties purchased before this date may still fall under the scope of the tax if sold within 2 years, unless certain exemptions are met.

Initially outlined in British Columbia’s Homes For People plan, the primary aim of this tax is to discourage the short-term holding of properties for profit.

Here's how the tax will operate:

  • The tax will be applicable to income derived from the sale of properties owned for less than 2 years.

  • The tax rate will vary, with the highest rate imposed on properties held for the shortest durations. It will start at 20 percent for properties sold within 365 days of purchase and diminish to zero between 366 and 730 days.

  • Exemptions may be available for those eligible.

Who will be affected:

  • If you sell your property on or after January 1, 2025, income from the sale may fall under the new tax if the property was acquired less than 2 years prior.

  • Whether the tax applies depends on the purchase date of the property.


  • If you bought a property on May 1, 2023, and sold it on January 31, 2025, the income from the sale would be taxable.

  • However, if you opt to sell the property after June 1, 2025, the income wouldn't be subject to the tax.

Note: The seller's residency status may vary.


  • Certain life circumstances, such as separation, death, illness, work relocation, involuntary job loss, change in household status, personal safety, or insolvency, may qualify for exemptions.

  • Selling your primary residence within 2 years of purchase might allow you to exclude up to $20,000 from taxable income.

  • Exemptions will also be available for those contributing to housing supply or engaging in construction and real estate development.

It's important to note that this overview doesn't encompass all potential exemptions, and further details will be provided in due course.

Applicable properties:

  • The tax pertains to income earned from the sale of properties with housing units, those zoned for residential purposes, or the rights to acquire such properties (e.g., contract assignments).

  • Special provisions will apply to properties or parts thereof used for non-residential purposes.

Notably, income from the sale of properties situated on reserve lands, treaty lands, and lands of self-governing Indigenous Nations won't be subject to this tax.

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? Email me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you! It’s my pleasure!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Salmon Arm BC
Message me: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:


Tips for Making an Offer on a Home

Before making an offer on a home, ensure you're financially prepared and ask important questions to gain insight into the property. Discover six key questions to ask the seller for additional information to inform your decision-making process.

When making an offer on a home, being pre-qualified or pre-approved by a lender is crucial. Here's why it matters and six key questions to ask the seller for additional insight into the property:

  1. Why is the seller selling the house? Understanding the seller's motivations can help you evaluate the true value of the property and adjust your offer accordingly.

  2. How much did the seller pay for the home? While the original purchase price can provide some context, it's essential to consider other factors like market value and property improvements.

  3. What does the seller like most and least about the property? This question can reveal valuable insights into the property's strengths and weaknesses, helping you make an informed decision.

  4. Has the seller experienced any past problems with the home? Knowing about previous issues like leaks or repairs can help you assess the condition of the property and any potential future expenses.

  5. Are there any nuisances or problem neighbors? Understanding neighborhood dynamics can influence your decision, especially regarding noise levels or planned community changes.

  6. How are the public schools in the area? The quality of nearby schools can impact property value and desirability, making this information valuable for your decision-making process.

By asking these questions and working with your real estate professional, you can gather crucial information to make an informed offer on your dream home. Ensure you're fully prepared and equipped to negotiate effectively.

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? Email me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you! It’s my pleasure!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Salmon Arm BC
Text me: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:


Essential Home Repairs Before Selling: A Realtor's Guide

Discover the top home repairs recommended by a seasoned real estate professional before listing your property for sale. From fixing sticky doors to refreshing landscaping, learn how these simple tasks can enhance your home's appeal and expedite the selling process.

When you’re preparing to sell your home, it’s crucial to ensure it shines in the eyes of potential buyers. Here are five key repairs you should prioritize:

  1. Check all light bulbs: Replace any burnt-out bulbs throughout your home to ensure proper lighting consistency, especially in multi-light fixtures like bathroom fixtures.

  2. Fix sticky doors: Address issues with entrance and interior doors by applying simple remedies like WD-40 to ensure smooth operation.

  3. Refresh landscaping: Enhance curb appeal by cleaning walkways, planting seasonal flowers, and trimming hedges to showcase a well-maintained exterior.

  4. Repair fixtures: Attend to minor plumbing and hardware issues such as leaky faucets or loose drawer handles to leave a positive impression on buyers.

  5. Check smoke detectors: Ensure all smoke detectors have fresh batteries and verify expiration dates for added safety and value during inspections.

Bonus Tip: Re-caulk around sinks to enhance cleanliness and reinforce the well-maintained appearance of kitchen and bathroom spaces.

Remember, extensive renovations aren't always necessary. By addressing these simple repairs and enhancements, you can increase your home's appeal and expedite the selling process. Contact us for a complimentary market evaluation and personalized plan to maximize your home's potential. Let's get your home ready for a successful sale!

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? Email me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you! It’s my pleasure!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Salmon Arm BC
Text me: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:


Strategic Home Staging: 4 Methods to Achieve Selling Success

When your house hits the market, it's showtime! But are you truly ready? Getting your home market-ready is crucial for attracting the right buyers and maximizing your price. Here are four strategies to set the stage for success:

  1. Do-it-yourself home staging: Even basic decluttering and tidying up can work wonders. Pack up unused items, clean kitchens and bathrooms thoroughly, and clear pathways. Focus on essential items and declutter surfaces. Impress potential buyers from the moment they see your listing photos.

  2. Professional staging consultation: Take advantage of our complimentary service with a professional interior designer. Get personalized advice on furniture arrangement and simple enhancements like new towels or throw cushions. Choose the perfect paint color to appeal to today's buyers. Spend an hour to make a positive impression on potential buyers.

  3. Virtual staging: Ideal for vacant properties, virtual staging brings your empty space to life in listing photos. Our professional photographer captures images with virtual staging in mind, creating furnished views of key areas. Stand out in online searches and help buyers envision themselves in the space.

  4. Physical staging: While an option, physical staging can be costly. Furniture rental, delivery, and setup expenses can add up to thousands of dollars per month. In most cases, virtual staging offers a cost-effective solution without sacrificing impact.

With these four options, you can tailor your approach to fit your unique situation. Whether your home is bustling with activity or sits empty, we're here to help you create a memorable real estate performance. Get ready to impress potential buyers and sell your home with confidence!

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? message me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you! It’s my pleasure!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Salmon Arm BC
Text me: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:


Discovering Education Excellence: A Guide to Schools in Salmon Arm, BC

As your dedicated realtor, I understand that the perfect home goes hand-in-hand with the right educational environment for your family. Salmon Arm offers a variety of schools, each with its unique offerings and vibrant community. In addition to public schools, there are excellent private institutions contributing to the educational tapestry of this wonderful area. Let's delve into the educational landscape to ensure you make informed decisions about your family's future.

1. Salmon Arm Secondary - Sullivan Campus

Location: 751 Parksville St, Salmon Arm, BC

Welcome to Sullivan Campus, an integral part of Salmon Arm Secondary School, designed for students in grades 10 to 12. With a commitment to academic excellence, Sullivan Campus prepares students for the next chapter, whether it be further education or entering the workforce. The school's diverse extracurricular activities, including sports, arts, and community service programs, create a well-rounded educational experience.

2. Salmon Arm Secondary - Jackson Campus

Location: 551 14 St NE, Salmon Arm, BC

For students in grades 8 and 9, Jackson Campus provides a supportive and engaging environment. This campus focuses on the transitional years from middle to high school, encouraging students to explore various subjects and activities. Academic achievement and personal growth are at the forefront, ensuring a smooth transition into higher grades.

3. Bastion Elementary School

Location: 315 9 St SE, Salmon Arm, BC

Bastion Elementary is a cornerstone for young learners, offering education from kindergarten to grade 5. Rooted in building strong foundations in literacy and numeracy, this school also places importance on a well-rounded education. Programs in art, music, and physical education contribute to a holistic learning experience.

4. Hillcrest Elementary School

Location: 1180 20 St SE, Salmon Arm, BC

Dedicated to academic excellence, social responsibility, and life skills development, Hillcrest Elementary caters to students from kindergarten to grade 5. Parental involvement and community engagement are encouraged, fostering a collaborative educational environment.

5. South Broadview Elementary School

Location: 2090 10 Ave SW, Salmon Arm, BC

South Broadview Elementary, welcoming students from kindergarten to grade 5, is committed to providing a positive and nurturing environment. In addition to core academic subjects, the school emphasizes character development, instilling values of respect, responsibility, and cooperation.

Private School Options:

6. Kings Christian School

Kings Christian School is a distinguished private institution committed to academic excellence with a strong emphasis on Christian values. Serving students from kindergarten to grade 12, Kings Christian provides a nurturing environment focused on character development and personalized education.

7. Shuswap Adventist School

Shuswap Adventist School offers a unique educational experience with a focus on both academic and spiritual growth. With classes from kindergarten to grade 9, this school promotes a supportive community and a holistic approach to education.

As your trusted realtor in Salmon Arm, I believe that a home is not just a property; it's a part of a larger community, including the schools that shape the future. Whether you're a growing family or looking to invest in a community with excellent educational facilities, Salmon Arm has something special to offer. For the latest updates or to explore additional educational options, feel free to contact me. Let's embark on this journey together, finding not just a house but a home within a thriving educational community.

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? Email me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you! It’s my pleasure!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Salmon Arm BC
Text me: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:


Jez's Guide to Home Selling: From Marketing to Closing

Discover the unparalleled benefits of partnering with a REALTOR® like Jez for your home-selling journey. From exclusive tools to navigating the complexities of closing, Jez ensures a seamless process. Learn why having a REALTOR® is essential and how to maximize your property's value.

Why Choose a REALTOR®?

A REALTOR® goes beyond being a licensed professional; they are esteemed members of the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) adhering to the highest standards of professionalism and expertise. With access to exclusive tools like the MLS® Home Price Index (HPI), only available to REALTORS®, they provide advanced insights into home price trends, giving you a strategic advantage.

How Jez, Your REALTOR®, Guides You Through the Selling Process:

  1. Setting the Optimal Price:

    • Jez, your local real estate expert, uses exclusive industry knowledge and tools, such as the MLS® HPI, to help you set the right price.

    • Ensures you maximize earnings without intimidating potential buyers.

  2. Preparing Your Home for Market:

    • Jez offers expert advice on home renovations to boost your property's value.

    • Advises on cost-effective improvements and the option of a pre-listing home inspection.

  3. Marketing Strategies:

    • Utilizing professional photography, videography, and virtual tours for an impactful online presence.

    • Leveraging social media, real estate sites, and the extensive REALTOR® network to maximize exposure.

  4. Handling Offers and Negotiations:

    • Jez assists in negotiating the best purchase price, ensuring your interests are protected.

    • Provides guidance on accepting, rejecting, or countering offers for a successful negotiation.

  5. Closing the Sale:

    • Collaborating seamlessly with your lawyer, Jez ensures a smooth closing process.

    • Offers essential tips for sellers, including meeting reporting requirements and coordinating the exchange of keys.

  6. Moving Out:

    • Jez provides practical advice for a stress-free moving experience.

    • Coordinates with professionals for a hassle-free move and ensures a smooth transition.

Choosing Your REALTOR®:

  • Trusting a known and trusted REALTOR® like Jez is a wise choice.

  • Use the "Find a REALTOR®" feature, filter by location and specialty, or seek recommendations from friends, family, or social media.

  • Jez, your REALTOR®, ensures you receive personalized attention and a tailored approach to your selling needs.

Pricing Your Home and Home Renovations:

  • Learn about the importance of getting a home appraisal and how Jez, as your REALTOR®, determines the asking price.

  • Explore typical renovations before selling, from kitchen updates to enhancing curb appeal.

Financial Considerations:

  • Consult with a professional financial advisor before making significant decisions.

  • Understand financial implications like discharging or transferring mortgages and potential capital gains tax.

Listing Agreement and Marketing Your Home:

  • Signing a listing agreement with Jez officially kicks off your home-selling journey.

  • Understand the crucial elements included in the listing agreement, from property descriptions to completion dates.

Closing the Sale and Moving Out:

  • Jez guides you through the seller's responsibilities during closing.

  • Ensure a smooth transition by coordinating with your REALTOR®, lawyer, and other service providers.

Embark on a rewarding home-selling journey with Jez, your dedicated REALTOR®. Contact Jez today to elevate your selling experience and achieve the best results for your property.

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? Email me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you! It’s my pleasure!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Salmon Arm BC
Text me: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:


Your Tactical Handbook for International Homebuyers in Canada

Embarking on the exciting journey to a new country entails thrilling prospects, coupled with a multitude of challenges. From untangling the complexities of immigration to orchestrating the logistical intricacies of relocating your household across borders, the adventure demands strategic planning. Adding a layer of complexity is the recent enactment of the Prohibition on the Purchase of Residential Property by Non-Canadians Act in 2023, reshaping the dynamics for those eyeing Canadian real estate.

This legislation, set for a two-year term, imposes restrictions on non-Canadians seeking specific residential properties in Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs) or Census Agglomerations (CAs), particularly those featuring three units or less. However, certain exemptions apply to specific groups, such as students meeting specific criteria, temporary residents with viable work permits, and individuals fleeing international crises under particular conditions.

Cracking the code to navigate this intricate terrain lies in early and thorough research. Delve into specifics such as local market dynamics, property types, and pricing. Consider enlisting the expertise of a seasoned REALTOR® in Canada to guide you through this complex process, ensuring you make informed decisions.

For those fortunate enough to be exempt from the ban and currently residing in Canada, the purchasing process follows a familiar trajectory. REALTOR® assistance in connecting with mortgage professionals ensures you are pre-approved, allowing you to embark on your property search with a clear budget in mind. becomes your go-to platform for exploring listings, with showings arranged by your agent or even virtual walkthroughs if you find yourself abroad.

In the event the ban renders you ineligible but your sights are set on moving to a CMA or CA before 2025, the wise choice is to explore rental opportunities. Be prepared for a competitive rental market by leveraging resources like or seeking guidance from local REALTORS® on current trends in their areas. Overcoming hurdles, such as a lack of Canadian credit history, involves meticulous preparation, including compiling essential documents like letters of employment, pay stubs, character references, and previous landlord recommendations.

For international buyers planning to make Canada their home post-2025, the lifting of the ban promises an array of options. In the interim, arm yourself with knowledge through research and establish connections with a local REALTOR® who can provide valuable insights, virtual tours, and ensure you are well-positioned for a successful future property acquisition.

A few pointers for post-ban foreign buyers to bear in mind:

  1. Property ownership does not impact immigration or citizenship status.

  2. Canadian mortgages necessitate a down payment ranging between 5% and 50%.

  3. Any rental income incurred is subject to income tax.

As you embark on this exhilarating venture to Canada, may your transition be seamless. When the time arrives to secure your dream home, trust a seasoned REALTOR® to guide you through the process with expertise and enthusiasm!

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? Email me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you! It’s my pleasure!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Salmon Arm BC
Text me: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:


Essential Tips for First-Time Home Buyers

Discover essential advice for first-time home buyers, from staying resilient after rejected offers to leveraging technology and exploring alternative housing options. Follow these expert tips to make informed decisions and ensure a smooth home-buying journey.

Stay Positive After Rejections: Building Resilience in Home Buying

  • Don't be discouraged by rejected offers; view them as opportunities to find a better fit.

  • Work with experienced real estate professionals to navigate challenges and stay motivated.

Explore Beyond Comfort Zones: Finding Your Ideal Home

  • Broaden horizons by venturing outside familiar neighborhoods.

  • Realize hidden gems in lesser-known areas with unique charm and character.

Budget Wisely: Planning for All Home-Buying Expenses

  • Consider all expenses beyond the down payment, including closing costs, property taxes, and maintenance fees.

  • Develop a precise financial plan from the start to avoid unforeseen financial burdens.

Start Small: Your First Home as a Stepping Stone

  • Understand that your first purchase doesn't have to be your forever home.

  • Begin with a more affordable option, accumulate equity, and upgrade in the future.

Leverage Technology: A Tech-Savvy Approach to Home Buying

  • Use online platforms, real estate apps, and virtual tours for remote property exploration.

  • Save time, cast a wider net, and make informed decisions with technology.

Exercise Patience: Trusting the Home-Buying Process

  • Be patient and trust the process; finding the right home takes time.

  • Extra time invested can lead to long-lasting happiness with the perfect home.

Evaluate Your Budget: Aligning Expenses with Financial Goals

  • Assess your budget considering mortgage approval and long-term financial goals.

  • Avoid stretching your budget to the maximum for financial stability and comfort.

Engage Early: Seeking Professional Guidance

  • Enlist experienced real estate professionals early for guidance.

  • Benefit from insider knowledge, market insights, and assistance with complex processes.

Compare Mortgage Rates: Maximizing Long-Term Savings

  • Resist settling for the first mortgage rate; explore different lenders.

  • Partner with a lender aligning with financial objectives for significant long-term savings.

Preserve Savings: Avoiding Financial Strain

  • Maintain a financial safety net; don't drain all savings for the down payment.

  • Keep savings for emergencies, repairs, or unforeseen circumstances for peace of mind.

Explore Alternatives: Diversifying Housing Options

  • Consider townhouses, condos, or older homes for unique advantages.

  • Diversify your search for the perfect home that suits your unique lifestyle.

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? Email me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you! It’s my pleasure!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Salmon Arm BC
Text me: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:


FIVE cost savings programs for first-time homebuyers

There has never been a better time to be a first-time homebuyer in Canada. With both federal and provincial governments offering a number of resources, grants, and rebates to the first-time homebuyer, now may be the time to purchase your dream home.

Here are five programs that can help you afford to purchase your own home without breaking the bank.

HOMEBUYER’S PLAN - First-time homebuyers have an opportunity to use their RRSP contribution towards a down payment, thanks to the Canadian Revenue Agency’s Homebuyer’s Plan. First-time homebuyers can withdraw up to $25,000 from an RRSP account so long as the contribution was made more than 90 days prior, and will only have to pay it back over a 15-year period. This means that couples can withdraw a total of $50,000 combined from their RRSP accounts, which can make a huge contribution towards a down payment.

GST/HST NEW HOUSING REBATE First-time homebuyers residing in provinces that have combined provincial and federal sales tax into HST, including Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Ontario, and B.C., are eligible for an HST tax rebate through the federal government. While rebates and conditions vary from province to province, the program is designed to help with the federal portion of the HST new homebuyers have to pay. You can find out if you’re eligible for an HST New Housing Rebate, as well as all necessary application forms on Service Canada’s website.

FIRST-TIME HOMEBUYER’S TAX CREDIT - Homebuyers who have not owned a home within the last four years may be eligible for the first-time homebuyers tax credit through the Government of Canada’s Economic Action plan. The credit is based on $5,000 multiplied by the lowest federal income tax rate for that year. For example, the lowest federal income tax rate for 2014 is 15 per cent, so the value of the credit would be $750. You can learn more about the first time homebuyer’s tax credit

ENERGY EFFICIENT HOUSING - Canada is a beautiful country filled with flowing rivers, flourishing wildlife, and vast landscapes, which is why we fight so hard to protect our environment. There are many ways homeowners can benefit from buying or building energy efficient homes. Along with a variety of national energy efficient building programs, there are also a variety of province-specific rebates and cost-saving programs to help build a more sustainable home. Be sure to consult Genworth Canada’s comprehensive list of consumer benefits, loans, refunds, and federal and provincial energy efficient home programs to explore ways you can save by going green, as well as their guide to what to look for when purchasing an energy efficient home.

HOMEBUYER PRIVILEGES - New homebuyers who receive a Genworth insured mortgage also receive access to a number of Homebuyer Privileges when shopping at select retailers for moving and home-related product and services. In the past, privileges have included a 15 per cent discount on credit reports from Equifax, a $55 gift card to Rona, 10 per cent off car rentals from Hertz, half price home inspections from Service Experts, 15 per cent off moving boxes from Frog Box, and much more. This program is especially beneficial to ease the financial burden of smaller or less obvious home buying costs like moving, decorating, and renovating. From Genworth canada- See more at: http:// cost-savings-programs-for-first-timehomebuyers#sthash.XUtdYvdO.dpuf

Curious to know how the market’s doing in your neighbourhood? Email me and I’ll prepare a quick customized report for you! It’s my pleasure!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Lets talk Real Estate: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:



Embarking on a home renovation is an exciting yet intricate process that demands careful consideration to ensure success. As a seasoned realtor, builder, AND renovator I've witnessed numerous homeowners facing challenges during renovations. In this comprehensive guide, we'll delve into key insights on how to avoid common pitfalls and navigate the renovation journey smoothly, ensuring optimal results for your property.

Home renovations, when executed effectively, can significantly enhance the functionality, aesthetics, and overall value of a property. However, the journey is often fraught with potential issues that, if not addressed, can lead to costly mistakes and dissatisfaction.

Quality craftsmanship is paramount. Opt for reputable contractors with a proven track record to guarantee superior work, eliminating the need for expensive fixes down the line. Similarly, prioritize durable and reliable materials, making a strategic investment in your home's long-term resilience.

The role of design cannot be overstated. Collaborate with experienced designers to craft a space that is both visually appealing and functionally aligned with the practical needs of your lifestyle, thereby enhancing the property's overall value.

Timing is crucial for success. Plan renovations during optimal seasons to prevent weather-related delays, ensuring your project stays on track. Ensure that your renovation plans seamlessly align with the flow and purpose of your home, avoiding designs that feel disjointed or do not make sense.

Striking a balance between quality and the property's price point is essential. Overinvesting or cutting corners can have a direct impact on resale value. Develop a clear plan, establish a realistic budget, and incorporate a contingency fund to accommodate unexpected expenses.

Maintain a smooth working relationship with trades by ensuring they are licensed and reliable. Regularly monitor contractor payments and verify adequate insurance coverage to mitigate risks. Obtain comprehensive estimates for the entire job to prevent budget overruns and secure necessary permits early on to avoid legal complications.

Avoid attempting work beyond your expertise or cutting corners to save money, as this can lead to decreased market value and potential health hazards. Prioritize professional services and safety measures to guarantee optimal results.

Renovations, when approached with a clear plan, can enhance your property's value and aesthetics. However, success requires meticulous planning, attention to detail, and strategic decision-making. By considering these insights, you can navigate the renovation process smoothly, ensuring a positive impact on your property's value and overall satisfaction. Should you have questions or need guidance on home renovations, feel free to reach out!

Jez Nichols
CIR Realty Shuswap
Lets talk real estate: 250-515-5391
Send me an email:

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