Edmonton Real Estate Blog

(NC) An estimated three million Canadians have one, and they have emerged as the single largest contributor to the growth of household debt in Canada.


Yet many consumers do not appear to fully understand how they work.


No, we’re not talking about credit cards or car loans. We’re talking about home equity lines of credit or HELOCs.


According to a 2019 survey by the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada, many people appear to lack awareness of the terms and conditions of this widely sold financial product, exposing them to the risk of over-borrowing, carrying debt for extended periods and uninformed decision-making.


HELOCs are a secured form of revolving credit. The lender uses your home as a guarantee that you'll pay back the money you borrow. And, as you pay your HELOC down, you can borrow it again, up to a maximum credit limit.


Most major financial institutions offer them with a mortgage as a combined product, which is sometimes called a readvanceable mortgage. Many use them for...

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Identity theft has been on the rise so I thought I would share some information to protect yourself from identity theft.

How to Spot Identity Theft

  1. Review your credit report regularly to spot suspicious account openings.
  2. Check banking transactions regularly. Report anything strange immediately.
  3. Recognize, and look into it, if youre not getting important pieces of mail (i.e. bills, bank statements).
  4. You are receiving calls from debt collectors about debts that aren't yours.
  5. You get a notice that your information was compromised at a place you do business with or have an account. 

How to Protect Yourself

  1. HTTPS. Purchasing or putting your information into a website that does not have the prefix HTTPS means it is not secure. Watch out for sites that only have HTTP.
  2. Secure your mail. Do not leave any trace of information on credit card statements, utility bills, and the like. This is a strategy lots of thieves use to gather information from you. Shred anything that has your name and address...
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(NC) Winter is made for curling up inside to watch a good movie or tv show. And when you’re in hibernation mode, it’s nice to have a dedicated place for binge-watching. Here are some tips to create your very own theatre at home:

Minimize ambient disruptions. You don’t need to do a major remodel, but a few changes can help cut out distracting sounds and light. Try choosing a space that’s naturally darker like your basement, or you can fake it with room-darkening or blackout blinds. When it comes to eliminating noise, softer materials can make a big difference – add an area rug, throw pillows and lush curtains.  

Plan for proper viewing. For a comfortable experience, consider some rules of thumb for viewing and seating distances. The distance from your tv should be 1.5 to 2.5 times the diagonal width of the screen, and it’s best to have the centre of the screen at eye level. If you’re buying a new tv, use this formula to see how...

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(NC) One of the best things about winter is coming inside from the frigid weather to a cozy and welcoming environment. To make your home a space where you’ll want to hibernate all season long, check out these tips.

Add layers of lighting. Our winters can be long and cold, so take steps to make sure your refuge is toasty warm and inviting. Swap out cool, white lightbulbs for warm ones and place plenty of light fixtures at various heights throughout your home. Think reading lamps, wall sconces and pendant lights. If you have a fireplace, make sure it’s clean and safe to use for natural lighting and warmth. You can also pepper your home with candles in comforting seasonal scents like fresh pine or cinnamon.

Create cozy nooks. Whether it’s in your bedroom, living room or study, set up spaces that make you want to curl up for a relaxing evening. Try making a little reading nook in your bay window where you can dive into a good read while pausing to watch the snow fall....

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(NC) The term “house poor” is likely one we’re familiar with as Canadians. Given the ever-changing housing market, it’s something you may even have identified with. But what does it really mean? And how can we avoid it?

“House poor” is a situation that describes a person who “over-extends” themselves and spends an unusually large proportion of his or her total income (roughly 30-40% or more) on home ownership, including mortgage payments, property taxes, maintenance and utilities. If you’re feeling like a disproportionate amount of your income goes towards your home-related expenses, then you might be in this group.

According to the 2019 RBC home ownership poll, half of Canadians claim they would avoid a situation where they become house poor as they say it’s mentally stressful and financially irresponsible.

However, one in four Canadians does identify this way and approximately one in ten is prepared to put themselves in this position....

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(NC) Renovations can be a daunting task. If your goal is to increase your property value, smaller upgrades can provide a higher return on your investment.

Here are some budget-friendly projects for key areas of your home that can boost your property value:

Kitchen. You don’t need a complete remodel to increase the value of this space – it can be as simple as focusing on one thing, such as cabinets or countertops. Refacing old cabinets by adding a fresh coat of paint, a new finish or updated knobs can bring new life to your kitchen. Adding new granite countertops is an easy way to modernize an older kitchen. Make sure to choose a countertop that fits with the price point and aesthetic of your home.

Bathroom. The bathroom is where most of us begin and end our day; modernizing it is a great way to increase your property value. New floors or shower tiles will give the illusion of a complete makeover. Updating the vanity, sink or mirror...

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(NC) Long nights and chilly weather activate our instincts to hunker down and nest at home. Get inspired to make your space relaxed and inviting and make the most of the season with these helpful tips and ideas.


For warmth. Is there anything better than curling up with a good book and comfy duvet as the snow falls gently outside? For a soft and warm cover, consider one with a down filling. Down is the warmest available; it’s a natural fill that has the ability to reloft and mould itself to your body for continuous warmth and comfort. It’s also great for your bedroom pillow and in a jacket for when you do decide to brave the cold.


Avoid buying down fibre, an inferior product that lacks insulation. To make sure you’re getting a quality product, look for the Downmark certification label, a globally recognized and trusted quality certification symbol for Canadian-made down and feather filled products. The label assures items are genuine and have been finished in Canada according...

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(NC) As the change in weather has us retreating indoors, take some time to spruce up your interiors with these design ideas.


Play with paint. One of the most budget-friendly ways to change up a space is with paint. You can use it to refresh antique or dated furniture, or you can create a whole new ambiance with a new wall colour. For the cooler months, try dark, nearly black walls to add depth to a room. Keep it warm and inviting with lighter furnishings and décor; the deep shade will accentuate their silhouettes for a striking finish.


Re-theme a room. Whether it’s your bedroom, kitchen or living room, switching up the style of a room can dramatically improve the overall look and feel. Try a new colour palette, or a different aesthetic like rustic, contemporary or cottage to create a renewed environment. For an affordable makeover, focus on smaller but impactful elements like textures, accents, furniture and décor.


Frame your view. Transform a boring basic window with...

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