Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Get the proper permits or pay the price!

It is imperative that the proper permits be in place for your building and renovation work.

If you fail to get a proper permit, once work stops, inspectors can ask you to halt work and also remove any work already done.

If you don't see a permit there probably isn't one. Ask the contractor to show you the permit BEFORE work starts.

Permits protect the homeowner in two ways.
First, the municipality will make sure the plans outline a structurally sound project.
Second, they check that building codes are followed as well as bylaws.

Process to obtain a building permit; Submit a permit application with 2 sets of a site plan and detailed drawings of the project. (get an engineer or architect to do the drawings. $200-$2000 this covers the admin work, processing fees, staff hours and inspections.

Allow 10-30 business days...
The municipality will check the work during the process at key stages to ensure quality of work. Appr. 6 inspections made.

I hope this info helps you....


PS.... I offer a $500 referral fee if you know someone looking to buy or sell a home. Give me a call and I would be glad to help them out... www.NewImageHomeSales.com

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

2012 Housing Starts Forecast

Canadian Housing Starts - January 10, 2012

Canadian housing starts rose almost 8 per cent month over month in December, to a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 200,200 starts. New home construction in BC urban centres fell 20 per cent from November, at 21,000 starts (SAAR) and were down 26 per cent year over year in December.

The year 2011 ended with housing starts 3 per cent higher than 2010 at 24,235 units, driven by a 20 per cent increase in multi-family starts.

Looking at major metropolitan areas, housing starts fell 30 per cent year-over- year in Vancouver due to a 40 point drop in multi-family starts. Total starts in Vancouver finished 2011 up 17 per cent at 17,867 units. Abbotsford new home construction fell 43 per cent year-over-year in December, but was up 4 per cent for all of 2011 at 543 units.

Housing Starts in Victoria fell 54 per cent year-over-year in December and finished 2011 22 per cent lower at just 1,642 starts.

Finally, new home construction in Kelowna showed some encouraging signs of recovery to end the year, rising 88 per cent year-over-year in December.

However, 2011 was another challenging year, with starts ending the year 2 per cent lower than 2010 at 934 total starts. For 2012, we expect that housing starts will grow roughly in-line with new household formations at 27,500 units, though with a clear bias toward multi-family units and relatively weak new single family starts.

Monday, January 2, 2012

10 things to know about gas ranges.... 1. Can't beat an electric oven..... gas is in the best when it comes to cooktops however pros agree that the even heat produced by the electric oven is best... you can purchase a Viking or Elba hybrid with gas top and electric oven.. 2. Are cheaper to run.... gas ranges cost 1/2 of what you would pay for an electric range per hour. 3. No longer need pilot lights.... an electric igniter is used instead of the eternal flame which saves gas consumption by 40% 4. Are insulated.... self-cleaning gas versions have the most insulation to handle prolonged temps... 5. Tell you which pot size to use... Use the burner to match the pot instead of wasting the burners heat on a pot that is too small for the burner. 6. May come with a sensor... optional auto-ignite feature allows the range to detect if any gas leaks are present. 7. Need a CO2 detector... If the range isn't working properly, the produced CO2 can be deadly. Install a detector close to the range to detect leaks. 8. Reveal when you're wasteful... A blue flame is efficient, an orange or yellow flame signals that the range needs servicing. 9. Get all choked up... Burners caked with food impede flame production, clean the range regularly. 10. Need a sealed oven door... close the door on a piece of paper, if the paper slips out easily the seal needs replacing. Hope these tips help and enjoy a great new year... Arran PS.... If you know someone looking to buy or sell a home let me know and I will provide a $500 referral fee...