James Hambling | (780) 460-8558

According to Statistics Canada, new home prices rose 0.1 per cent nationally in July, after a 0.2 per cent increase in June, representing a year-over-year increase of 2.3 per cent. Of all Canadian cities, Regina has increased the most on an annual basis, up 4.7 per cent. But it has been gains in Toronto that really pushed up the national index, which increased 4.6 per cent over July 2011.

Home prices in Calgary and Edmonton didn’t move much on a monthly basis in July, up 0.1 per cent in Calgary, down 0.1 per cent in Edmonton. Annually, prices were up 2.3 per cent in Calgary and 0.8 per cent in Edmonton.

New home and resale prices have been relatively flat in Alberta over the past couple of years, even as wages and employment increased at a healthy clip. The federal government has returned mortgage insurance standards to where they stood in 2004, which will force households to be more prudent. That, in turn, will force some delays, but, clearly, the Alberta market, after an initial drop and four years of flat growth, is close to burning off most of the excess.

Let me know if I can be of any help - James

Daily Economic Comment - ATB

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BOOST YOUR PAYDOWN: Tips to save thousands

Early and often: that's the best way to pay down your mortgage, save thousands and cut years off your debt. There are a few ways to boost your mortgage paydown:

Make your house pay. Put a dent in your debt by adding revenue. Consider renting out part of your home, or taking in a roommate to help off-set expenses. Rent out an extra parking space if you have one. Or talk to your accountant about whether you can write off a room in your home as an office for your home business – then throw your tax savings against your mortgage each year!

That brings us to the best tip: Accelerate your payments.  A mortgage is probably the largest debt you will ever take on. Every payment decreases the amount of interest you owe – so make a plan to pay down faster. Get in the habit of making lump sum payments whenever possible; put work bonuses or cash gifts directly against your mortgage principal. Every payment after that will be worth more. And if you're paid twice-monthly, divide your monthly payment into two and make them every time your paycheque comes in. Believe it or not, frequency makes a huge difference over the life of your mortgage.

Let me know if I can be of any help – James – 780-967-0079

Information complements of Rick Tober @invis

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Once Again, No Rate Change!
It's great news for variable rate holders as the Bank of Canada announced earlier today that it is keeping the overnight rate unchanged, which means the prime rate for most lenders should stay at 3%. 

The Bank's statement noted that there is "widespread slowing of activity across advanced and emerging economies" and that in Canada "global headwinds continue to restrain economic activity."

As with recent releases, there was the hint that future rate hikes may be necessary through the cautionary statement that "some modest withdrawal of the present considerable monetary policy stimulus may become appropriate" in order to control inflation.
The Bank's next rate decision is scheduled for October 23.
As we head into the fall season, Canadians continue to benefit from historically low 5 and 10-year fixed rates.  And we're starting to see the new OSFI guidelines being implemented at the major Canadian banks. Scotiabank just announced that their Free Down Payment mortgage will be discontinued September 15, 2012.  Contact your mortgage broker if you would like a review of your situation in light of the new mortgage rules and guidelines and today's great rates


Let me know if I can be of any help - James


Information complements of Rick Tober @invis


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James Hambling
Office:(780) 460-8558
Fax:(780) 967-5134
James Hambling Century 21 Masters
110 – 5 Giroux Rd
St. Albert, Alberta
T8N 6J8 Canada

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Data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton.