Thursday, February 26, 2015

Watch out for fraud

Alberta is a place of booms and busts. Wealth can be made and lost very quickly. For all the "overnight" success stories you hear there are dozens more tales of funds lost, misappropriated and outright stolen.

 From straw buying to title fraud there are many ways you can be taken. Take a look at Globe and Mail's Top 6 Real Estate Scams.

We've all heard of the Madoff ponzi scheme that took in billions of dollars. Did you know we have a possible Canadian one in courts now? Read about League Group and the $330 million of investors funds that they lost.

 Lastly,  Field of Dreams, the Albertan farmland project that lost billions.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Real Estate for the long term

We  recently moved to accomodate our desire for city living with a bit of a country life feel. We got a beautiful ravine front bungalow. My kids say it's country in the front, city in the back.
One of our neighbours owns three houses on the street. They are rented and used for storage as well. These are pretty expensive prime lots.  I imagine he bought these three houses kept them tenanted and paid down the mortgages over the last  25 years until he got mortgage free.
He now has a steady cash flow ( aside from taxes, insurance and repairs) and easily one million plus just for the lots....
If that isn't an excellent long term strategy I don't know what is!
You don't need 20+ houses you would do well with only one.
“We have always believed that real estate is a safe long-term play. The numbers don’t lie – since prices have begun to be tracked, they have increased,” “Of course we have seen short-term fluctuation with dips and corrections, but in the long term the arrow has always pointed up.” Don Campbell

Real estate is not day-trading - read more HERE

Friday, February 20, 2015

Tiny House Movement

In my neighbourhood all the old tiny war houses are being turn down and turned into gigantic single family homes, duplexes and triplexes.  I ofter marvel at the heating costs of such mega houses.

If you are on Facebook and aren't good at avoiding clickbait you have seen the exact opposite end of the spectrum.  Tiny houses. 900 sqft and down. Often built by the owner and using whatever he could find in a 100 meter radius (I jest). However tiny houses are amazing. They look cozy and often epitomize a Japanese aesthetic of style and functionality.

What takes me out of the tiny house market is a husband, two boys, a cat and a billiards table. 

Today you can see a 165 sqft one on beautiful Pender Island HERE

Friday, February 13, 2015

More Good News

Alberta Oil Sands Investment Real Estate News®
Glenn Simon Inc., Suite 1217, 5328 Calgary Trail NW, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Tel 1-888-780-5940 Fax 1-888-276-4517   email:

February 14th., 2015
Volume 18, Issue 3

Dear Friends and Partners,

Not all the news stories are bad. I met my friend early Monday morning and he looked really tired. He said that he’d been volunteering (1 of 3 shifts) for The World's Longest Hockey Game. He’d spent from 2:AM-6:AM score-keeping.

That meant standing on the cold balcony watching the game at the house of Dr. Brent Saik's of Saiker's Acres hockey rink who has been hosting the event. He said it's amazing to take part.

You can see more here  and donate here.  Keep the good news coming. 

 Central Edmonton: Inglewood 4-Unit Cashflow

Turbo charge your portfolio. This 1977 built Side X Side Duplex with fully finished basement suites is located a few blocks from the old municipal airport, which is to be redeveloped into an urban living/green space. Inglewood offers easy access to Downtown, Grant MacEwan and Yellowhead Highway as well as many parks and schools to enjoy in this desirable, mature neighbourhood.

This property has front entrances to each side of the 2 X 3BD halves.  This property was built as a duplex and features 2 x 1BD (non-conforming) basement suites. Slated to renovate and modernize to improve value and rent-ability. This will become a turn-key deal. The property has a double car garage and driveway. Excellent access to downtown, transit and parks.

Comes complete with great tenants making this a totally turn-key property for you. Inglewood is a great mature area that is a desirable for tenants working in the city or attending Grant MacEwan. HUGE upside potential due to the quality of the building, great purchase price, strong economic fundamentals and the proximity of this property in relation to Edmonton's desirable growing core.

Purchase price: $679,000
Total Investment: $158,900
Your Estimated 5 Year Profit $96,725
Your Estimated pre-tax Total ROI is 60% or 12% per year

These 4 suites rent for top dollar and have everything arranged, including financing structure and incredible tenants. Your investment includes: impeccable tenant selection, financial analysis, professional inspection, insurance, financing set-up, legal fees, basic accounting, reserve fund, CMA, bi-annual statements, strategic market planning to ensure successful entry and exit, plus much more!


Short-term slowdown predicted

By Myke Thomas , Calgary Sun, January 17th, 2015

The sudden and precipitous drop in the price of oil has put a huge question mark over the Calgary housing market in 2015 and Calgarians are looking for answers.
The economists have answered with their thoughts below.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

CMHC predicted a housing market slowdown in the fall, before oil prices plunged, with expectations for total housing starts to decline 16% and net migration to slow by 17%, with an increase of 2% in MLS sales this year over last.  FOLLOW THIS ARTICLE

Analysis: Job figures show oil price drop hasn’t sunk employment
Employers watch numbers for impact of declining spending on oil exploration

By Don Pitis, CBC News, February 6th, 2015

Oil companies across Canada have been slashing their budgets. In previous months, those cuts have not showed up in Canadian unemployment numbers, but today's job numbers offer a new window on the state of the U.S. and Canadian economies.
The numbers were a surprise to the upside, with Canada's economy adding 35,000 jobs during the month — much better than the 5,000 jobs that economists had been expecting.

Jobless figures give unemployed people an update on their prospects for finding work, but labour force statistics do a lot more than that.   GRAB THIS STORY


Keep building during downturn Consulting Engineers of Alberta urge

By David Howell , Edmonton Journal, February 5th, 2015

Alberta’s economic woes have prompted the Consulting Engineers of Alberta to ask members to hold their 2015 rates for consulting services at 2014 levels, as part of a wider effort to encourage continued spending on infrastructure.

In December, the association recommended a 3.3-per-cent increase to 2015 contracts. But after a vigorous debate this week, board members voted unanimously to ask all firms to hold the line, CEA president Matt Brassard said Thursday.  READ MORE HERE


I appreciate all your calls and emails. I'm looking forward to helping you with your next step towards building real wealth.
Your success continues EVERYDAY, let me help you build for tomorrow.

“If you’re going through hell, keep going!"  - Winston Churchill

Warm Regards,

Todd and Danielle Millar


P.S. Stay ahead by checking out Danielle's blog at Edmonton Real Estate Investor for all your cutting edge market news and information.

Saturday, February 07, 2015

Crying over rentals...

I got stuck in an 80s music warp on youtube the other day. One hit led to another till I was watching a Platinum Blonde video.

Where are they now??? Pressing question, I googled them.

Kenny Maclean the bassist and Keyboardist passed away in 2008.

Mark Holmes the lead singer is an actor and composer.

Sergio Galli is a luxury home builder in Ontario. I'm sure I've seen his beautiful homes in Mississauga. Take a look here

Chris Steffler lives in Toronto. I found a great article about his foray into rental real estate. Imagine the guy from Platinum Blonde as your landlord.

 Anyway he had some troubles:

“One day I got a call from a tenant saying he was going to sue me for $100 because a mouse ate out the crotch of his girlfriend’s bathing suit and another $500 because mice were in his sofa. How did it become such a huge problem? This couple had been there for two years. All they had to do was tell me they’d seen a mouse and I would have come right over to deal with it.”
“I was totally stressed out. When a tenant doesn’t pay the rent or a cheque bounces, you can have the best excuses in the world but the mortgage company doesn’t care about your problems. Some major repair would suddenly need to be done and I’d be like, ‘omigod, I need two grand by Thursday!’ Those houses cost me a lot of money and a relationship.”

The best piece of wisdom:

It’s about being self-sufficient,” he says. “If your landlord doesn’t have to come all the way to your place at dinnertime on a long weekend just to fix a leaky tap, you cement a great relationship. Just let him cash your cheques and worry about the big stuff, like replacing a furnace or the roof. The more love you can get happening with your landlord, the better off you’ll be.”

Rentals are never easy. It's interesting everyone has the same troubles. No one is doing it better and becoming a millionaire over night.  Maybe a property manager could have eased his troubles.

Thursday, February 05, 2015

2015 Great time to buy, selling is a different story.

“While this is not unusual for the winter, it can make it difficult for buyers to find the right home. The influx of properties we have seen on the market in January will be a relief for buyers, allowing them more choice in their price range and possibly more time to make their selection."

We are likely seeing the effects of oil prices and a feeling of economic cautiousness among some buyers,” Geneva Tetreault, president of the Realtors Association of Edmonton Read More