Top 3 Ways to Get Started with Commercial Real Estate

It can prove to be a bit of a challenge to get into commercial real estate for first-time investors. It doesn’t matter if you have invested in residential real estate before because commercial real estate is a whole new ball game that overwhelms even seasoned residential investors. Sure, it is an intimidating world to enter, but it is worth it. So, how do you get started? Take a look at these top 3 ways to get started with commercial real estate. 

Figure Out How Much Money You Can Invest

Before you go too deep into it, you need to assess your current finance and see just how much money you can invest in a property. Decide whether you’d like to invest in a commercial property on cash or will you be seeking a loan down the line to boost your initial investment money set aside. 

If you wish to purchase commercial properties with the help of a loan, it helps to get in touch with your local bank to find out what your options are. You may have to let the bank know how much you have put aside to determine how much loan you would qualify for an investment property. 

Do Market Research: Its More Important Than You May Think 

So, by now, you’ll have figured out your finances, how much you can invest, and just how much you can borrow from a bank for an investment property. The next step is to gain an insight into the real estate world around you or in other locations. Perhaps there is a commercial sector you already have your eyes on, such as apartments, offices, or retail stores. You can do one of two things or both; you can do it yourself or hire a professional to investigate on your behalf. DIY is good, but professional help is even better. 

Experts Are Better Than Beginners: But Together, They are Unstoppable 

At this point, it would be advisable to get in touch with a reliable realtor near you that has an in-depth knowledge of commercial real estate and can steer you away from potential red-flag investment properties. It is okay to do some research on your own, but having a realtor by your side can boost your chances of finding an investment property that will earn you a lot of money down the line. 


When hiring this professional, look for their track record. How many properties have they sold? Do they have a long list of clients? Are they well-known in the area? A good realtor will earn your confidence fast and be very clear with you regarding your options, so keep an eye out for them! 


Everything You Need to Know About Residential REITs

Real estate investment trusts are crucial if you work diligently to build an equity or fixed-income portfolio. They offer incredible diversity great returns, all at very low risk. They help individuals generate a dividend income while they appreciate, making them a great alternative to investing in stocks or bonds. Don’t even think about putting your money away in the form of cash because cash, when it sits idle, depreciates, and that is not something you want. 

With the help of a reliable real estate agent and an online broker, you will be able to invest your hard-earned money into real estate investment trusts. 

REIT is a specialized kind of company that deals with real estate assets. These companies that also invest in commercial properties are known as equity REITs. REITs that invest in mortgages and mortgage-backed securities are known as mortgage REITs. 

Residential REIT

A residential real estate investment trust owns and operates rental properties, including urban high-rise and low-rise apartment buildings. Their focus is mainly on owning properties that appeal to single families and students.


Residential REITs focus primarily on developing new properties from the ground up; then, some grow through acquiring new properties. Both forms of residential REITs increase the value of properties by buying in. Some REITs also do a combination of both. 

Investing in Residential REITs the Right Way

If you’re looking for a short-term investment, residential REITs are not ideal for you. However, if the long-term investment is more your thing, you must invest in residential REITs the right way. In the short term, REITs are impacted by the housing market, but the impact is not as severe over long periods. If you’re investing in REITs, plan for a minimum of 5-years ahead as an investment. 

Residential REITs Offer Diversification

You can easily diversify your portfolio with residential real estate investment trusts. Try to invest in multiple ventures and not tie all your money in stocks because when they slump, as they often do, so will your spirits. When you invest in residential REITs over a long period, a portion of your investment portfolio will continue to appreciate and be secure. 

Residential REITs resist Recession

If you’re looking for an investment protected from the recession, then residential REITs are the way to go. Even if the economy is in the gutter, people will always need places to live in, and as such, will want to either buy or rent. This has less to do with unemployment and more to do with basic needs. 


So, have you made up your mind and would like to learn about whether or not the residential REITs are your next investment option? It might help to get in touch with a realtor to discuss your options. It is better to do this sooner rather than later so your realtor can lay out all of your options in front of you and help you make an informed decision. 


Tips on Buying Your First Rental Property

The real estate market in 2021 has been hot, and right when real estate buyers thought that the market would slow down, the exact opposite happened. The demand for new housing has continued to stay at an all-time high and has been filled by a solid economic base that draws in more workers and their families towards city life.

If you seek to buy a rental property, you might be wondering the best way to go about it. Before you leap investing in this kind of property, you must know everything there is to know before you jump in. Generally, the real estate market tends to be unpredictable. But when you add a global pandemic to the mix, many companies offer their employees working from home opportunities; there is no way to predict the next step for the real estate market.

There are, however, a few things you need to consider before you invest in your very first rental property.

Do You See Yourself as a Landlord?

Suppose you have purchased a rental property as an investment and have rented it out, which automatically makes you a landlord. You need to ask yourself if you have spoken with a property management company. Yes, being a landlord can indeed earn you a lot of extra income, but don’t let it fool you into thinking that there’s not a lot of work that goes into it–in your spare time to be specific.

Tenants may call you in the middle of the night for minor property repairs that you will have to do out of your pocket. If you’re not ready for this kind of commitment and are not the handy type, then you might not be cut out for this kind of role.

Increased Down Payment

The average down payment for a property in Canada is 20% if the property that is listed is for more than $500,000. However, if you would like to make money on your investment, suppose you want to rent it out; the more money you put on as your down payment, the better it is for you. If you can afford it, try putting a 25% down payment to make back more money through equity in the first year.

Up and Coming Neighborhoods

If you would like to maximize your profits from your rental property, one way to do so is to check out up-and-coming neighbourhoods in the city. Suppose you invest in a property in an area that is not as desirable as others, but the prices in that area are lower than in other areas. In that case, it is possible that you can maximize your profits as the neighbourhood will continue to develop and gain gentrification.

Should You Paint Your House Before Selling It?

The answer to this question is yes. A fresh coat of paint is the most affordable way of making sure your property looks cleaner, newer, and like it has been maintained for some time. When you have scuffed or dirty paint on the walls, it may reduce your home’s overall resale value. However, it isn’t just the paint of your house that affects its overall value; it is also what color you choose that matters.

Colors to Avoid and Colors to Use

To get the highest possible price for your property, try to avoid colours that are too extreme or bright. While courage and creativity are excellent traits, they’re not rewarded well in the real estate market. Potential buyers must imagine their furniture and decor inside of your property. If your property is painted in colours like burnt sienna or sunset orange, it will make it infinitely harder for the potential buyers to imagine it as their own.

Mint Green for Kitchens

You may not know this, but buyers tend to offer $1,800 less for a home that has a kitchen painted in a trendy colour such as mint green. You must also avoid the color red as it can potentially reduce $1,500 from the overall price paid off your house, on average. Yellow is another colour you must avoid as it doesn’t settle well with potential home buyers. A colour that does well for kitchens is white.

Bright Green for Bathrooms

If you have your bathrooms painted in a bright green color, you might repel a lot of sellers. On average, typical home buyers tend to steer clear from vibrant colours used in a bathroom and prefer going for more neutral and calming hues in a room they will bathe and brush in the morning. Avoid other colors such as pink, bright yellow, and fire engine red. These are also colors that are less likely to help sell a house. Try going for light blues for bathrooms instead as they can on average, causing buyers to pay 1.6% more for a property.

Blue for Living Rooms

Did you know that when blue is used for property living rooms, it can lower its overall value by $189? Yes, there have been instances of homebuyers loving it, but most prefer to steer clear of it. Homebuyers also prefer colors used in a house that complement colors are used in every room. In general, there should be one theme followed throughout the house in terms of color palettes. Other colors that you should avoid for living rooms are bright yellow, bright green, and pink. Try going for gray when it comes to living rooms. It offers a calming ambiance that homebuyers love, and it gives them a chance to use statement colors for wall art and furniture with a neutral background.

Want some interior design ideas for 2022 before you sell your property? Take a look here.



Top Tips for Saving a Down Payment for a House in Collingwood

Finally, deciding to invest in a house is not easy, especially given Canada’s current real estate market. This essentially means that you will be taking on a huge debt that you will commit yourself to for many years down the line. In addition to this, you will also have to save up for a substantial down payment on the property, which is also one of the biggest reasons why many Canadians are not homeowners yet. They simply cannot afford the down payment on a property.

A lot of us have the option to save up for a down payment, but we know that it takes many sacrifices and a lot of self-discipline to get there. It also requires individuals to commit to a particular plan to save up the amount by an ideal date.

With that big concern in mind, here are a few top tips for saving for a down payment on a house.

1.If you have any high-interest rate debts, pay them off as fast as you can!

The sooner you make payments on these debts, the more you save on overall interest rates.  When these debts are out of the way, you can put your money towards a down payment instead of paying a monthly amount elsewhere. You can pay off your mortgage much sooner by making higher payments.

2.Figure out problem areas where you spend too much.

Everyone has certain money weaknesses, such as; some of us tend to eat out a lot; others spend a lot of money on clothes. It doesn’t matter what your money weaknesses are; what matters is that you need to identify them by being honest with yourself. The more you deny them, the more it will delay your homeownership. Once you have identified your problem areas, you can set a much lower budget for yourself and these categories and calculate the overall difference.

3.Try to set up automatic transfers.

If you already have this done, then good for you. But for those of you that don’t, try to set up automatic transfers from your bank account to send a particular amount of cash from your checking account into your savings account every month. The sooner you get used to it; you won’t even think about this money when you budget your expenses every month.

4.Set a reasonable monthly budget for your household.

This may be the most significant thing you have to do so far: get all parties in your home to agree to a specific budget for every month.  Suppose you live from paycheck to paycheck; it should be your ideal goal to have some money left over from your previous paycheck before you get your next paycheck.

5.Consider a more modest rental.

If you are saving up for a down payment on a home, you may be paying a high amount in rent every month. To save more money for a down payment, consider downsizing and moving to a more modest rental until you have enough saved up.



Top 8 Reasons to Move to Collingwood, Ontario

Are you also considering what life would be like if you lived in the Collingwood area? It is definitely a great place to live which comes with a rather relaxed outdoor lifestyle that is balanced with shopping and restaurants. If you still need more convincing to move to Collingwood, here are our top eight reasons for you. 

Fresh Air, Clean Water

The instant you step inside Collingwood, you will be greeted with fresh air, even on a hot summer day. The water you find in Collingwood is fresh and clean. So much so that the Wasaga Beach has received the award Blue Flag Destination which is only awarded to the most eco-friendly beaches. Only 24 beaches in Canada have this award so far. 

Affordable Properties

The price of a single family home in Toronto is far higher than what a single-family can even afford. So, forget the GTA, it is time to look into properties in Collingwood, Ontario, where you will find affordable single-family homes for a new family at affordable rates. 

Outdoor Adventures

On an average summer day in Collingwood, you will find kayaks tied to the roofs of cars, whereas on cold winter days, you will find snowboards and skis. No matter what the season, Collingwood never fails to offer its residents fantastic adventures to take part in. And you can be one of them!

Incredible Schools

Collingwood offers its residents some of the most incredible schools in Simcoe County, whether they be public, separate, private, English, French, or both. You will also find specialized schools such as Notre-Dame-de-la-Huronie in Collingwood, Ontario. 

Top Rated Golf Courses

On any given day, you will be a 15-minute drive away from a golf course in Collingwood as it offers some of the top-rated golf courses in the country such as Monterra Golf, Batteaux Creek Golf Club, OslerBrook Golf and Country Club, The Georgian Bay Club, and the Lora Bay Golf Club. 

Cycling Trails

You can bike down the Georgian Bay Trail or go on an extreme bike ride downhill the Blue Mountain for Collingwood, Ontario, which will never run out of adventures to offer you. 

Sailing and Boating

You can choose from many marinas in Collingwood for sailing and boating, such as the Cranberry Resort, Ruperts Landing, Thornbury Marina, and the Collingwood Downtown Harbourfront. As they are planning on revamping the harbourfront, the prices of properties in Collingwood will likely go up in the coming years, which is why it is an ideal time to invest if you seek to make a profit. 

The People 

It may sound cliche, but it is true. It is the people that make a place a home. When in Collingwood, take a walk downtown or to the parks or on the water. You will find that the people here are incredibly kind, helpful, friendly, and will always greet you with their old-town charm. If that doesn’t make a place a home, we don’t know what does! 

Reach out to our property experts at Collingwood Homes to get started on your next Collingwood home now.

Your Top 3 Property Tax-Related Questions Answered

Property tax happens to be one of the most visible and painful taxes that homeowners have to pay in Canada. This amount is not skimmed off of their paychecks all at once, they usually have to pay a big installment either on a monthly basis or 4 to 6 times per year. Homeowners also see their mortgage payments increase, if their lender insists that they themselves make the tax payments.

In Canada, the tenants also have to pay a property tax at a much higher rate than homeowners in some municipalities do, but it is usually worked into their rent. There is really no way to avoid the tax, the least you can do is try and understand it so you are better prepared. Here are some of the things you need to know about property tax.

How is Property Tax Calculated?

It is the responsibility of your municipality to assess the value of your home and apply a tax rate on it. If your home costs $300,000 and the tax rate that you pay is 2%, then you pay 2% of $300,000, which is $6,000 a year.

How is My Tax Assessment Determined?

Municipality Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) is a non-profit agency responsible for assessing your property and sending a notice of assessment to you. The assessment that they conduct is to reflect the price that your property would obtain if it is put up for sale. This agency also tracks the real estate sales in neighborhoods so it can put a particular value on a one-bedroom condo in the neighborhood you are in. The assessment of your property may also reduce if it is situated beside a busy corner or a gas station or boost its tax assessment if situated next to a street backing on a ravine. 

How is the Tax Rate Selected?

The tax rate of your property is chosen by your city or town council based on their annual budgeting process. If there is a Regional Council in your neighborhood, they can also set a tax rate.  Toronto, however, has no Regional government, but other municipalities such as Greater Toronto have both the local and the regional governments, which is something you should be mindful of. 

Finally, the provincial government is responsible for setting a tax rate when it comes to education. These three rates are then added together. Suppose that the local tax is 1%, the regional tax is 1%, and the education tax is 0.5%. This would translate into an overall tax rate that is 2.5%. However, the city or down collects attacks on behalf of all of these governments, so what you get is just one bill for all three taxes. 

If you have any questions regarding taxes, you can always reach out to one of our property experts at Collingwood Homes before you finalize the purchase of your next property. Give us a call now, and don’t hesitate to discuss further. 

Jumping Into the Post-Pandemic Real Estate Market: What to Expect

Description: The hike in the prices of real estate properties has left investors feeling devastated, wondering if it is even the right time to buy. 


The Covid-19 pandemic rather negatively impacted the real estate market. While the pandemic pretty much impacted most things, there are a few sectors that remained untouched. 

The world is slowly healing from the severe economic disruptions caused by Covid-19, making investors wonder what is next for the real estate industry. While we cannot make specific predictions, we can track trends to come to a logical conclusion as to what comes next. Worry is a natural reaction to most things today. But, what does help, is doing all the research and educating yourself, so you know in your conscious mind what to expect from the future. 

Covid and Office Properties

Most people began working from home rather than from their offices due to the pandemic. Companies deduced that remote work caused their employees to work more productively and even beat their performance levels from before the pandemic struck. With the vaccination rates on the rise, many companies have returned to their work-from-the-office model, but many have chosen remote work over this. 

What impact does this pivot from in-office to WFH have on office-property investors in Collingwood, Ontario? If the company has a one-person per desk rule, this might significantly impact how they invest in office spaces. They may need floors with smaller subdivisions to accommodate these changes or entirely disregard expensive spaces to invest in more affordable spaces. 

This may change as the pandemic leaves us, but we can’t be sure at this point. 

As for commercial real estate investors, the advice would be to be mindful of the shift in desirable locations when investing in office spaces. Many investors have ditched the hustle and bustle of the city and invested in office spaces in the suburbs. It is a high possibility that investing in these locations might prove to be rather fruitful in the coming years. 

Commercial Properties Post Covid

The commercial real estate world was devastated because of the pandemic. The overall demand for office spaces, retail spaces, and hotel spaces has declined. This has, in turn, put significant pressure on sale prices and has reduced sellers’ expectations when it comes to selling their properties and turning a profit. However, on the flip side, the pandemic has increased the sales of properties for industrial real estate such as data centers, cell towers, and healthcare institutes. 

Have a Cautious But Optimistic View

Whether new or old, investors should be mindful of the lagging vaccination rates in several parts of Canada, whether new or old. These rates can quickly turn into future restrictions and lockdowns in parts of the country. Therefore, they should be careful when they are investing in these areas. It would be worth investing your time in a reputable real-estate agency like Collingwood Info to help you understand the many factors that now go into investing in real estate post-pandemic. 

So, what’s it going to be for you?

Top Classic Movies to Watch As Temperatures Drop

Whether you are looking for an offline family movie night or just want to escape the cold weather coming, there are plenty of classic winter movies that will do just that. Here are the top 10 best winter movies that should be added to your collection.

1) The Big Lebowski – This Coen Brothers cult classic follows Jeff “The Dude” Lebowski, who gets caught up in a case of mistaken identity. 

2) Fanny and Alexander – Set during early 20th century Sweden, this movie is one of the most modern movies on this list. This family saga follows Fanny and Alexander, two children escaping their home to live with their rather strict grandmother.

3) Scrooged – A modernization of Charles Dickens ‘A Christmas Carol’ follows a television executive who is visited by three spirits that show him his past, present, and future.

4) Die Hard – Action genre staple Die Hard is set at an office building during the holiday season. John McClane has to defend himself against terrorists when they take over the structure he is in during his visit to Los Angeles.

5)  Gremlins – A horror comedy about an inventor who receives a strange creature called a mogwai for Christmas. If certain conditions aren’t met, this little guy turns into some really evil monsters.

6) The Nightmare Before Christmas- An American stop-motion animated musical fantasy film by Tim Burton. Jack Skellington, the Pumpkin King of HalloweenTown, is bored with doing the same thing every year for Halloween, so he goes to Christmas Town. Here he takes the idea and meshes it with Halloween ideas to create a ghoulish Christmas event. 

7) Holiday Inn – A musical based on Irving Berlin’s 1942 film of the same name (itself loosely based on the original Turn Back The Clock by Whithall Smith). This film follows Jim, who opens a luxurious hotel to serve as a home for New Yorkers who are stranded in the rural town where he lives.

8) The Chronicles Of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – A children’s classic that follows a group of siblings who end up in a new world called Narnia after discovering an old wardrobe.

9) Dumbo –  A baby elephant is made fun of because of his big ears. When he escapes from captivity and gets stranded in the city, Dumbo learns how to fly and earns the respect of everyone around him.

10) The Sound Of Music – Follows Julie Andrew’s character Maria, a nun in an Austrian convent. She becomes a governess to the seven children of a naval officer who has been widowed. It all occurs during the early days of World War II. 

Are you and your family looking for a new home to watch movies in? Check out new listings here.


Top Effective Marketing Hacks for Real Estate Agents

Description: Want to find out what makes for a modern-day successful real estate agent? Read on to find the top effective marking hacks all real estate agents must use to get ahead of the game.

For every real estate agent out there, the biggest worry is always the marketing strategy they employ and whether it is effective or not. They are getting it right results in expanding their presence in the market and helping them get more leads. 

The competition in the market is genuinely endless as new trends continue to pop up, making it nerve-wracking for those trying so hard to keep up. This is a task aside from the actual job, which is to manage and sell properties. Realtors must create marketing strategies to stay on top of their competition to get more buyers, sellers, and investors. 

Take a look at these effective marketing hacks real estate agents can employ. 

Have a Responsive Website

It counts more than you think. The Internet has been around for decades now, and most of us regularly rely on it to even get from one place to another. The first thing people do when they hear something new is “Google it.” To enhance your online reach, you need to have a functioning and responsive website that is mobile-friendly and can function on Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. 

Inform Your Audience 

Even if you are on top of all the trends, it wouldn’t matter if your audience is not. As a realtor, people can trust it, and it is your job to make sure your audience is updated regarding new trends in the real estate market with the help of social media channels. Inform them not just of trends but also what your company is up to so they can build loyalty with your brand. A great way to do this would be to have a news page for your business so people can keep up with your growth and understand your brand values.

Advertise Effectively

Social media channels have pretty much taken over the world. While organic ads work, you can run paid ads for your business and reach a wider audience. Meanwhile, you can curate content that represents your brand well and keeps people updated on real estate trends in the industry. 

Give The Conventional Methods a Try

We must evolve with the times, which doesn’t mean we should leave behind what has worked for decades. We need to modify the conventional real estate marketing techniques. Still, to turn a more significant profit with the help of direct mails, postcards, pamphlets, and more just to grab the attention of people and hold it for much longer than a few seconds while scrolling. 

Want access to a reliable real estate agent in Collingwood, Ontario, that has your back through the changing trends? Reach out to us at Collingwood Info