We own a business in Kitchener and someone keeps parking in our designated parking spots. Is there anything we can do? – FRUSTRATED
DEAR FRUSTRATED: Parking violations on private property are generally handled by your city’s bylaw enforcement team. In the City of Kitchener, if a driver parks in a spot designated for someone else (in a lot that meets the necessary signage requirements), bylaw officials can issue a ticket or have the vehicle towed.
Should you find a vehicle unlawfully parked in your spot, call the bylaw enforcement office (519-741-2345 in Kitchener). The person who makes the call will need to meet the bylaw official on-site. If a tow is required, call the bylaw office and a tow company. In this case, both the caller and the tow truck driver will need to meet the bylaw official at the scene.
We were at an open house this weekend. The agent showed us that there was a $100K discount on the property from a few weeks ago. It sounds like a great deal, should we make an offer? – READY TO ROLL
DEAR READY: I strongly suspect the home was overpriced to begin with. A price that has been inflated and dropped doesn’t mean you’re getting a great deal (think of the discount stores where everything is on sale and no one ever pays retail). You need to look at the value of the property and not necessarily the list price, as listing prices may be set strategically and can vary according to market conditions.
Pre-2016, sale prices were typically running at about 98 percent of listing prices. Then, we briefly saw list prices rise to about 100- 112 percent of sale prices. Pricing can be adjusted to achieve specific results. Without knowing which open house you attended, I would recommend you ask your own Realtor (not the seller’s Realtor) what the value of the home should actually be.
I am planning to put 50 percent down on my home purchase, do I need a financing clause? – SAVING GRACE
DEAR SAVING: The safe answer is always yes, though in multiple offers, you don’t always have the opportunity. According to Mortgage Advisor Lyda Sterczewski at CIBC, the need for a financing clause depends on your situation. She says that with a 50 percent down payment, you shouldn’t need to worry about an appraisal, but there will still be the issue of qualifying for a mortgage. Having a low income or being self-employed can affect your ability to qualify at the standard rate; the property value and your credit rating also come into play. If you’re wary of coming to the table with a financing clause, Lyda recommends speaking to your mortgage advisor before making an offer and if necessary, having a backup plan (like a co-signer) at the ready. If you’re not in a multiple offer situation, you may want to throw in a financing condition, at least for a couple of days.