Monday, April 30, 2012

Lynch Incoming BCREA Vice President

Elected At BCREA AGM April 2012 Posted: April 27th, 2012 Former Vancouver Island Real Estate Board (VIREB) President and 2011 REALTOR® of the Year Jennifer Lynch, can add one more accolade to her resume – Vice President of the British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA). Lynch, who has been a REALTOR® since 1994 was elected Vice President for the year at the BCREA Annual General Meeting in Victoria April 24th. “It speaks well of the REALTORS® on Vancouver Island that one of our own would be elected to such an important position at the provincial level,” stated VIREB President Guy Bezeau. “Jennifer has always demonstrated exceptional leadership skills in her business and in her relationship with the Board. We’re all very proud of her, and it’s no stretch of the imagination to say that they don’t get much better than her.” Lynch, a Gabriola Island based REALTOR®, had previously spent four years as a member of the VIREB Board of Directors and served as Board President in 2007. In February of this year she was awarded REALTOR® of the Year for 2011 for her outstanding community involvement and her dedication to excellence which has had a profound influence on the professional image of Vancouver Island REALTORS®. She begins her term of office May 1st. Posted File: lynch_elected.pdf Blog Courtesy of the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Public Art: Gabriola Streets about to be more Colourful

The Island is going to change a bit in the upcoming month, thanks to the hard work of the folks on The Gabriola Arts Council. They've initiated some public art work, and I'm pleased to say that I've been one of the five artists selected to paint a hydro pole in my neighbourhood. Now, I've been busy trying to get in touch with the neighbours, brainstorm a representative image/theme for the area, and get the ideas going. I'm looking forward to this project (it's my first opportunity to be involved in a public art piece), bringing some more art to the streets of the island and creating some good neighbourhood energy, which is one of the reasons I love living in my neighbourhood.

If you live in the Islands View/Coho/Thomspons/Spring Beach neighbourhood and want to be part of this project, please let me know, there are ways that everyone can be included in this fun endeavour.

We have the pole painting set for Saturday, May 5th from 1pm on, and a pole celebration for all our neighbours set a little later in the day.

** The above photos is from one of the poles that were painted in Whitefield, to see their colorful poles visit .

Saturday, April 7, 2012

10 Most Commonly Asked Mortgage Questions - Week 4

In the final week of  our series on the 10 most commonly asked mortgage questions this week we look at closing costs & mortgage payment caluculations. The blog is written by our guest blogger, John Eivindson, from Dominion lending, who services Gabriola, and has provided a wealth of information on lending practices.

How much will I have to pay for closing costs?

     As a general rule of thumb, it’s recommended that you put aside at least 1.5% of the purchase price (in addition to the down payment) strictly to cover closing costs. There are several items you should budget for when it comes to closing costs. Property Transfer Tax is charged whenever a property is purchased. The tax will vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but I can help with the calculation. GST/HST is only charged on new homes, and does not affect homes priced at less than $400,000. Even homes that exceed the price threshold are only taxed on the portion that exceeds $400,000. Certain conditions may apply. Please contact you lawyer/notary for more detailed information. Your lawyer/notary will charge you a fee for drawing up the mortgage and conveyance of title. The amount of the fee will depend on the individual that you use. The typical cost is $900. If you’re purchasing a single-family home, you’ll need to give your lender a survey certificate showing where the property sits within the property lines. Some exceptions are made, however, on low loan-to-value deals and acreage properties. A survey will cost approximately $300-$350, but the lender will often accept a copy of an existing survey. Other costs include such things as an appraisal fee (approximately $200), title insurance and a home inspection (approximately $350).

How much will my mortgage payments be?

     Monthly mortgage payments vary based on several factors, including: the size of your mortgage; whether you’re paying mortgage default insurance; your mortgage amortization; your interest rate; and your frequency of making mortgage payments.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Gabriola Island - Easter Weekend

While there is so much happening on this incredible island for Easter weekend, there is also an opportunity to take a moment and enjoy the amazing scenery around Gabriola.  So, if you're out and about on the island this weekend, please take some photos, if you're willing to share them, send me an email, and I'll post them on an upcoming blog.    I can't wait to see what you get up to on the island this Easter weekend!!!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Beach Clean Up & Up-cycle

     It's easy for me to admit that I'm a beachcomber. I can't go to the Gabriola shorelines without searching through the rocks and pebbles in my hands and looking at all the driftwood pieces. At times, I'll find wood pieces or styrofoam from boats and I'll stop and think about ways I could use these found materials. I was on the beach the other day and found this piece of styrafoam, I thought it would be easy to shape it and decided that I will use it to make either a mosaic fish or a junk bird. I will post you a picture with what it becomes, and hope that the transformation does up-cycle it from discarded garbage on the beach to a piece of art.