Category Archives: Pay off Debt or Invest in Real Estate

303 Highland Ave. Oshawa

A house That Keeps on Giving!


This home showcases the best of both worlds.Two living spaces and great rental income. This 2 +1 bedroom bungalow offers lots of natural light, 2 newer Kitchens, 2 Updated Baths, and Gorgeous Hardwood Floors. Entertaining is made easy with large Deck and Spacious Back yard. Massive Garage which was originally a single car that has an addition, making it the ultimate man cave. Basement is finished with a one bedroom suite with lots of storage, Home features newer plumbing, shingles, electrical, wiring, foam insulation on basement walls and sound insulation in the ceilings. Plus so much more!

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Retirement Resolutions

Is 2018 the year you or someone you know intends to retire? If so, a big part of that plan will likely involve some serious decisions about long-term housing.

Retiring from a paying job typically means an adjustment in your income, so here are some important points to think through before you take that important step:

Are you anticipating that you’ll be included in the 15 percent of Canadian seniors who still have an outstanding mortgage on their homes? If so, you need to recognize exactly how much extra money you’ll need in retirement in order to cover your housing costs.

If retirement is on the horizon but not yet imminent, you’ll want to work with a financial planner and mortgage professional to see what you can do to reduce or eliminate your mortgage debt before you retire. Bumping up your monthly payments now, while you’re still waiting, will help the debt disappear quicker. If you can reference to a lower interest rate but keep your monthly payments the same, you’ll also be able to chip away at your principal faster.

Consider if you still need your current space or if a smaller home would make more sense. A smaller space typically results in lower home operating expenses and less work to keep the household humming.

Please call The Mash Team to discuss all your downsizing options, whether that means a smaller house, a condo, or some other, more practical housing alternative to your current house. #CBRMR

What does being rich mean? How to define it

You probably know wealth when you see it around you – but do you know whether you are rich?

With real estate values soaring across the country, many Canadians feel a level of financial confidence today they’ve never known before. But have they reached a point of financial security? Do they have enough money for their future, and if not, how will they know when they do?

Statistics Canada employs numerous metrics for the other end of the spectrum, without ever using the term “poor.” For instance, the income cutoff for a single person living in a large city was $24,328 in 2014. For a family of four the amount was $45,206.

But there is no magic threshold, no national statistic, that defines you as rich. Wealth is a malleable term that might mean a well-stocked beer fridge, living mortgage-free or having enough money invested for a long retirement.

When it comes to amassing wealth, the United States sets the gold standard. But Americans themselves can’t definitively articulate what being rich means.

Twenty-seven per cent define it as having a lot of money; while 24 per cent say wealth means enjoying life’s experiences, and 22 per cent say it means being able to buy anything they want. That is the breakdown according to a representative sample of 1,000 U.S. adults surveyed in April by Koski Research for Charles Schwab Corp.

When asked to express how much is required to be considered “wealthy,” this “average” group of Americans came up with the amount of $2.4-million (U.S.), or nearly 30 times the actual median net worth of U.S. households.

Ask rich people a question like that, however, and you get a completely different answer.

Many people who have the drive to make significant sums of money don’t have the ability to dial down that ambition once they are wealthy. For them, the thrill is in the pursuit and money is the scorecard.

When the investment firm UBS AG polled 2,215 U.S. millionaires in 2015, nearly two-thirds of those with a net worth of less than $5-million and dependent children expressed concern that they are only one wrong step away from a major setback – be it a large investment failure or job loss. For individuals with $5-million or more, one-third said they felt they couldn’t withstand a setback.

Clearly, money doesn’t make it easy to sleep at night; it can be difficult to relax once you get to the top.

“With memories of the financial crisis still lingering, most millionaires don’t have enough wealth to feel secure,” concluded the UBS report, entitled When is Enough … Enough? “As a result, many feel stuck on a treadmill, without a real sense of how much wealth would make them satisfied enough to get off.”

In Canada, the average household net worth rose 4.3 per cent to $680,098 in 2015, according to Environics Analytics. Vancouver households crossed a symbolic threshold, becoming the country’s first “city of millionaires,” with an average net worth of $1,036,202, up 7.3 per cent from the prior year.

These gains were powered largely by rising real estate prices; Canadians’ principal residences comprise about one-third of their assets, according to Statistics Canada. What homeowners generally fail to accept, however, is that the money in their principal residence is permanently locked in. Very few Canadians end up selling their homes in retirement and enjoying the proceeds until their last cheque bounces the day they die peacefully in their beds.

Instead of looking at home valuations, a better measurement of wealth is whether your earned income – that is personal income from investments rather than employment – exceeds your expenses. Another sign of real wealth is the ability to forgo life insurance, because your estate would have enough assets to support your family at its current lifestyle.

Probably the least helpful way to assess your wealth is by comparing your spending with others, a process that will surely leave you feeling short.

Consider the millionaire family that flies to Whistler, B.C., annually for a ski vacation during the March break. By most standards, they look rich. But those parents may well be looking at a select group of their friends who are redefining the holiday experience by opting for snow and surf during the two-week break scheduled by most private schools: the first week in Whistler, the second in the Caribbean.

Instead of chasing a mirage, the best approach may be to embrace a broader definition of wealth. If you knew you only had five years to live, how much financial hardship would your family incur? How drastic a set of steps would you need to take to get your financial affairs in a state acceptable to you? What financial legacy would you be leaving and how close to your goals would it be? And most importantly, what course would you set to optimize those final years? Answers to these questions could provide the best snapshot of your true personal wealth today.


Know Your Options


Life has a habit of throwing unexpected twists at us when we least expect them. While none of us should live our lives in a constant state of worry, it’s important to know that, should financial troubles from the loss of a job or other unexpected situations strike, you can count on the advice of your mortgage broker to see you through it.

Life changes involving illness, change of work status or change of marital status can affect your ability to make your mortgage payments, so if you anticipate a change in any of these things please call to discuss your payment options as soon as possible.

If you have to default on a payment, lenders can sometimes grant you temporary payment relief and give you options for a repayment plan, depending on the situation. Mortgagors with a good payment record can often work out a temporary agreement that will allow them to make reduced payments for a specified period of time.

Remember, lenders do not want you to default on your mortgage any more than you do. It is in everyone’s best interest for you to demonstrate good financial discipline when times are good, so you have the best chance of full cooperation from your lender if you ever run into difficulty.

Please call me if you anticipate needing a “Plan B” for your loan obligations!

253 Verdun Road. Oshawa

Trendy, Thoughtful, Fully Renovated, Charming Brick Home.

Located on Quiet Street Close To All Amenities. Everything New Including Kitchen W Granite Countertops, Main Floor Powder/ Laundry Room, Hardwood Floors On Main Floor, Wide Square Baseboards, 200 Amp Service And Panel, Gas Furnace, Ac, Paved Driveway, Concrete Walkway, 2 Porches Plus Walkout From Dining Room To Gigantic Deck Overlooking Huge Shady Back Yard. Everything Except Furniture Included.

Home Shows Amazing! All of This for $355000.

Positive Cash Flow!

271 Nassau Street. Oshawa

Income Generated each month, in this Property, Close to Schools, Transit and Shopping. Main Floor has two units, and one upper unit. Yearly rental income is $ 33684. . Expenses are: Taxes $3428, Water $1096, Gas $1555, Hydro $5670.39. Home is fully rented, and ready for a new owner to collect the rent cheques.  Call Today!


271 Nassau St. Oshawa
Upper Unit Living Room
Upper Unit Kitchen
Main Floor 1 Bedroom Unit
Main Floor Unit
Main Floor Unit
Main floor Bedroom
Triple Closet
Large Yard
Parking for 6 Cars
New A/c 2015
Main Floor Unit + Basement
Living Room


Where Do Extra Payments Go?


If you were lucky enough to get a raise earlier this year, or found yourself in possession of a one-time lump sum, you may have asked to have that extra amount applied directly to your mortgage. If you have a relatively new mortgage, you may be wondering why the interest portion of your monthly mortgage payment is not noticeably declining by now.

The reason is that the interest portion of your payment is calculated on the outstanding balance of your mortgage which, especially in the early years, makes up a significant portion of your monthly payments. As your mortgage term progresses and your principal starts to shrink, the amount of money that goes directly towards the principal increases while the amount that goes toward the interest declines.

Any time you make extra payments, they go directly toward reducing your overall principal balance, and with that lower principal you’ll pay less in interest overall and shave years off your mortgage.

Please ask for an example, based on any extra amount you may be able to put toward your mortgage on either a one-time or a monthly basis, of how much time AND money you could save!

For More Information, Contact The Mash Team!

10 Ways to Avoid a Tax Audit

We have several times, and its very stressful.

Here are 10 ways that may help you to Avoid an Tax Audit

1.  Don’t Ignore the CRA’s requests for further information

2. Don’t have large or unusual changes in deductions or credits. 

3. Don’t claim large home-office deductions.

4. Don’t Claim 100 per cent business use of a vehicle. 

5.  Not reporting income from a T-slip. 

6. Don’t Report  income much lower than other residents in the same area. 

7.  Don’t Claim an aggressive tax shelter. 

8.  Don’t have Recurring losses from a rental property. 

9.  Avoid being Self Employed

10.  Don’t Have a lot of money in your TFSA 

Source: CRA 201242540

For The Complete Article: Click Here: 10 Ways to Attract A CRA Auditors Attention


Interest rate and how it affects you


Saving strategies to pay off your mortgage

Many financial planners will agree that one of the best financial strategies available to homeowners is to pay off your mortgage as quickly as possible and eliminate years of paying unnecessary interest. Here are a few strategies to help you cut years off your mortgage:

  • Shop around – When your mortgage comes up for renewal, you aren’t limited to using the same lender. Take a look at what other financial institutions or mortgage brokers have to offer. We can put you in touch with a choice of lenders and help you evaluate the various options available to you.
  • Consider all your options – When evaluating mortgages, remember there are other factors that can have an impact on cost in addition to the interest rate. The opportunity to make supplementary payments against the principal has significant value. Penalties for early termination can also have an impact on how quickly you can retire your mortgage debt.
  • Make payments as frequently as possible – Most lenders will allow you to change the frequency of your payments during the term of an existing mortgage. Speak to your lender and choose the most frequent schedule of payments available to you. Choosing weekly payments versus monthly can literally save you thousands of dollars and help you pay off your mortgage years earlier.
  • Generate additional income from your property – Renting out a portion of your property to earn income is a time-honoured practice that still holds true today. Sacrificing some living space in the early years of your mortgage can ‘jump start’ your payment schedule. Lump sum payments applied directly to your principal early in your mortgage term will have make a major impact on paying off your home quickly and achieving financial independence. This can easily be done in the Durham Region as long as you meet the Regions guidelines.