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REMonline.com - April 12, 2016

Canadian millennials are optimistic about the future, including their homeownership prospects, according to a new poll by Re/Max. The survey, conducted by Leger, found that 78.5 per cent of Canadians 18-34 agree that owning a home they love is attainable. In all provinces, they agree that homeownership is attainable, despite price appreciation in cities like Toronto and Vancouver, says Re/Max.

The survey also found that 81.6 per cent of Canadians 18-34 agree that finding a good job in their field is attainable, demonstrating overall optimism about their future.



While millennials are optimistic about homeownership, many expect help in order to make their dreams a reality. Of Canadians 18-34 who are considering buying a home, 37 per cent expect help with their down payment from a family member or friend. Of those who are expecting help, 60 per cent anticipate that it will come from their parents.

“The older generation has seen significant appreciation in the value of their homes, while the younger generation is entering the market at a higher price point,” says Gurinder Sandhu, EVP, Re/Max Integra Ontario-Atlantic Canada Region. “This means first-time buyers in Canada’s higher-priced markets often need a little help, which many parents are in a position to offer.”

Unsurprisingly given the higher home prices in these regions, prospective buyers in all age demographics in British Columbia are most likely to expect help, followed by those in Ontario.

The survey also found that when asked about their financial priorities, 68.2 per cent of Canadians 18-34 agree that saving for a down payment is a priority and 78.4 per cent agree that saving for retirement is a priority.

“We’ve found that for many young Canadians, homeownership is an important milestone that they are actively working toward,” says Elton Ash, regional EVP, Re/Max of Western Canada. “Furthermore, while Canadians continue to value and aspire to homeownership, they are not doing so at the expense of other financial considerations, such as retirement savings.”

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Aluminum wiring was extensively used in homes between the mid 1960s - 70s when the price of copper spiked. Potential problems with this wiring include lower conductive efficiency, overheating, and incompatibility of joining aluminum wire to copper wire.

 

If you have aluminum wiring in your home, signs of problems include discolouring of the wall receptacle, flickering lights, or the smell of hot plastic insulation.

Any signs or smells of burning, or receptacles that are warm to the touch is a serious issue.

Do not use the receptacle until a qualified electrician makes an inspection.

Not all aluminum wiring is hazardous.

Aluminum wiring in the home will operate as safely as any other type of wiring if the proper materials were used, installed and maintained as per the manufacturer's instructions and the provincial safety code. If the home involved in your transaction has aluminum wiring and you suspect problems may exist, it is recommended that a qualified electrical contractor inspect the electrical system, including connections. The insurance company may insist on a complete electrical inspection by a certified electrician, rather than a report from a home inspector.

 

Have any questions about buying or selling a home with aluminum wiring? Give me a shout at darrylwalsh@royallepage.ca or 204-5000 ext 222.


Aluminum Wiring

 

- Article information from CREA, The Canadian Real Estate Association

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Knob and tube wiring, also known as open wiring, was used in homes in Canada for almost 50 years, starting in the early 1900s. Parts are still available for maintenance purposes. Knob and tube wiring that was installed properly can provide many more years of service. 

 

The issue starts with changing lifestyles. Most old homes do not have as many electrical circuits as a new one. To get around this, some homeowners have installed additional outlets or new circuits and tied it into the old wiring, rather than starting a new circuit at the electrical panel.

 

Some problems also occur because if a circuit became overtaxed and 15 amp fuses were constantly blowing, homeowners put in 25 or 30 amp fuses to stop the problem. Having 25 or 30 amps in a wire not designed to handle it causes the wire to overheat. The wire and the insulation become brittle, and that is when the safety issues begin.

 

Some homeowners also did their own renovations, adding outlets but connecting them into the old wiring without making proper connections.


"Knob and tube wiring, on its own, is not inherently a problem."

 

Knob and tube wiring, on its own, is not inherently a problem. Some argue it does not have a ground conductor, but that is true of any wiring installed between 1950 and 1960. The ground conductor - or "third prong" - is necessary if you are plugging in appliances that have a 3- prong plug. If the knob and tube wiring is restricted to rooms without major appliances, this creates no special hazard.

 

"Some insurance companies may ask for a specific electrical contractor report."

 

If the home involved in your transaction has knob and tube wiring, it is recommended that you follow these guidelines:

  • Have a qualified electrical contractor check the knob and tube conductors for sign of deterioration and damage. Some insurance companies may ask for a specific electrical contractor report.
  • The general inspection report will also identify visible electrical safety concerns in the electrical wiring.
  • Knob and tube conductors should be replaced where exposed conductors show evidence of mechanical abuse and or deterioration, poor connections, overheating, or alterations that could result in overloading.
 

Example of 1930s knob and tube wiring
- Article from CREA, The Canadian Real Estate Association

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