What’s the value of regular exercise? Do you exercise regularly?

I’m not a personal trainer, nor do I play one on TV.

However, it doesn’t take much to know the benefits of exercise, especially today when many of us are spending hours sitting in front of our computers, then winding down our day sitting in front of the TV with a few snacks perhaps. If you are experiencing bouts of lethargy, stiff legs, a sore back, or feeling sleepy during the day, perhaps it’s time to get moving.

For those of us working from home, the weeks go by with Mondays quickly becoming Fridays rolling through the weekend, only to start all over again. Work, Eat, Sleep. Breaking up your day with a work out will not only make you feel better physically and mentally, you may also become more productive. Working out releases’ endorphins which make you happier and less stressed. To top it off, it is well known that people who exercise or are active, don’t get sick as often as those that are sedentary. As we are heading into flu season we could all use the benefits of working our way up to regular exercise.

If you don’t want to hit the gym, consider natural exercise. Basically doing something fun where you inadvertently end up exercising. Could be something as simple as grabbing a couple of badminton rackets and batting the birdie around. No need for a net.

When you are home hunting, consider how much value you place on having a gym in the building or room for your own equipment? Are you the type of person more likely to work out if you could roll out of bed, throw on your gym clothes and head downstairs? If you had to shower, get dressed and drive somewhere, how long will you keep up your routine?

Take your workout for a test drive, you might find it quite refreshing.


You are ready to go home hunting …

To ensure an enjoyable and constructive experience, you need to be prepared. This requires some homework to really know your Needs vs your Wants.

Plan to set aside some quality time to brainstorm the expectations and features of your next home. Then make a list with two columns marked NEEDS and WANTS.

Now imagine walking through your new home room by room, envision each space, what does it contain, what do you Need, what do you Want?

Do you like to cook? How important is the size of the oven or whether the range is gas or electric? If the oven is too small Cornish hens may be on the menu at Thanksgiving, or you may not be able to use full size baking trays for that secret cookie recipe.

How much laundry do you have to wash each week? It’s easy to overlook the value of full size appliances if you want those king size sheets washed in one load.

Storage is a big one for condo owners, you may have seasonal items that have to be packed away, so a locker is important. If the condo doesn’t have a locker, would in-suite storage suffice? Consider everything you own and decide where things will go, the last thing you want to do is purchase a place that becomes overly cluttered because items don’t have a home.

Outdoor space is another factor to consider when making your list. Do you want a deck or a patio? Main level condos usually have a larger patio and potentially, a yard with great access for entertaining or kids and pets. How important is a property with a balcony? Do you like to BBQ? Do you wish to grow veggies or face a specific direction?

Is parking important or do you take the SkyTrain? You may want a property within a .5km radius of a station so it is an easy walk even on a Vancouver winter day. Do you want a private garage or is a parkade ok?

Hopefully this has provided some insight into what you should think about, and what is important to you. Other areas to consider may be your furniture and whether it will fit in certain rooms, closet space and fitness area. Remember, this is a work in progress, if you do the homework, you will know when you find the right home.

I’d love to help you walk through this process, please don’t hesitate to call

Shannon 604-828-9095


You may have watched the UK TV series where the Brits are constantly trying to get on to the Property Ladder. It is very expensive in the United Kingdom to own property, the terminology may not be the same here, but we certainly have the same situation.

Many people are finding it harder and harder to achieve property ownership. Many of you may have rented your property with the intention of saving up for a down payment, years continue to go by, and you are still renting. How much money have you spent on rent while you watch the property prices increase? Every increase in property requires a larger down payment, it’s a vicious circle.

Maybe now is the time to think “outside the box” and consider an alternative method to owning property. Are you aware that you can purchase a property with your trusted, long-term roommate and be listed on Title as “Tenants in Common”? Tenants in Common basically means that each person owns a percentage of the property.

Calculate how much you spend per year on rent with your roommate, how long have you lived together, would it make sense to make an agreement to purchase a property together? The benefit is you will gain equity and not be throwing your hard-earned money towards paying off your landlords' mortgage each month.

When and if your circumstances change and the time comes to part ways, you can sell the property and take advantage of the equity you have built, or you may be in a situation where you can keep the property as rental income.

The big question is, if you have the down payment now, why aren’t you buying a home?

Here’s an example that I confirmed with a professional mortgage broker this morning:

  • $500K condo, Strata Fee $350, Taxes $1900
  • Minimum down payment (5%) $25K ($12,500 each)
  • Mortgage payment $2,079 ($1,039.50 each)
  • Strata Fee ($175.00 each), Taxes ($79.16 each)
  • Cost per month ($1,293.66 each) 
  • The above calculation is based on a Joint Income of $110,000/year, 5year fixed high ratio mortgage 1.95%

If your share of rent is currently $1,000.00/month, you are paying your landlord $60,000 in 5 years

How much can you sell your property for in 5 years? Definitely something to think about ….

As this idea is a little different than the standard approach, it is a good idea to have a discussion with your lawyer or mortgage broker for more detailed information. If you’d like contact names for either, please give me a call.

Let’s get the ball rolling, if you would like properties fitting your criteria sent directly to your inbox, please give me a call or email to discuss your needs & wants. I am always happy to help.

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