Archive for living in Kitchener-Waterloo

How to Invest in Real Estate in Waterloo Region

Be in Control of Your Financial Investments with Real Estate

Be in Control of Your Financial Investments with Real Estate

As you are most likely aware, the real estate market in Waterloo Region and surrounding areas is extremely active right now and has been for quite some time. When you witness the rise in home values the next logical step is to think, “Could I make money from investing in real estate?”

Most of the millionaires in existence have made money in real estate. That’s because as an investment, real estate is safe and increases in value over time. If you are thinking of your future and wondering how you will plan for retirement, owning income properties is a solid way of being in control of your financial future. With real estate, you have more control over this type of investment and you don’t need a financial planner to help you execute investment decisions. All you need is a relationship with a long-time Realtor who you trust to pick their brain every once in a while.

To find out how to affordably invest in real estate, watch my video below:

 

 

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,500 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by getting a copy of my free eBook here. Also for more great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.

HOME SELLING TIPS: The *Best* Home Staging Advice

 

HOME SELLING TIPS: How to Get the Most Money for YOUR Home!

HOME SELLING TIPS: How to Get the Most Money for YOUR Home!

In this video, our partners at the design team of Rooms in Bloom Home Staging and Design show you their GREATEST home staging tips. When I list your home to sell I pay these delightful designers (Alana and Heather) to help you get your home pimped to the max. We get the most money for our listings when they have the “magic wand” from Rooms in Bloom waved over them first!

When we prepare your home to sell right the first time, we get the maximum exposure AND the maximum dollar for your home. Find out the most effective home staging tips by watching the video below:

 

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,500 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by getting a copy of my free eBook here. Also for more great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.

REAL ESTATE TIPS: The 3 Main Factors That Lead to Overpricing Your Home for Sale

Understanding the factors that lead to incorrect pricing is vital when selling your home in Kitchener-Waterloo.

Don’t Lose Money When Selling Your Home!

Now that January is well underway, you’re reconsidering selling your house in Waterloo Region. You know that the market is hot and houses are selling for above asking price in many, many instances so now is a good time to sell, right?!

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that ANY home will sell at ANY price just because market conditions are favourable. You have a lot to lose by not pricing your home right the first time it hits the market. I’ve explained all of this in another video (you can watch it here: https://youtu.be/QyvvGq2qK_U).

It’s important to understand the factors that can lead to overpricing your home so that you are sure not to do it and end up losing money on the sale of your home. Watch my video here and benefit from my 21 years of real estate experience in Kitchener-Waterloo and the surrounding areas.

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,500 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by getting a copy of my free eBook here. Also for more great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.

 

Real Estate Tips: How Experts Sell Your Home Fast and for More Money

I’m going to explain to you how Real Estate Experts sell homes faster and for more money. This is important information for you if you are selling your home in Kitchener-Waterloo and you want results. If you are looking to buy your dream home and currently own a house, before listing your home you can benefit from my 21 years of real estate expertise on this issue. Right from the top, does your agent tell you what to do with your home “before” it is listed? When a potential buyer is coming into your home for the first time they have to be able to put themselves in the picture to be able to buy your home. So what do we do to accomplish this?……

Watch this video for my complete answer to this home selling issue:

Click to hear my full response about how real estate experts sell your home for more money

Click to hear my full response about how real estate experts                               sell your home for more money

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,000 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by downloading my free eBook. Also for more great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.

 

How Experts Sell Your Kitchener-Waterloo Home Faster AND For More Money!

Selling your home FAST and for MORE MONEY. Can you have both?

In this article, I’m going to tell you how Real Estate Experts sell homes faster and for more money. This is important information for you if you are selling your home in Kitchener-Waterloo and you want results. If you are looking to buy your dream home and currently own a house, before listing your home you can benefit from my 21 years of real estate expertise on this issue. Right from the top, does your agent tell you what to do with your home “before” it is listed? When a potential buyer is coming into your home for the first time they have to be able to put themselves in the picture to be able to buy your home. So what do we do to accomplish this?

HOME SELLING TIPS 

⊕Depersonalize⊕ You want to depersonalize “mostly” which is not the same as depersonalizing “entirely.” Depersonalizing doesn’t mean you get rid of ALL of your family photos. Home sellers take this to the extreme and then you end up with a house on the market that doesn’t look lived in. Potential home buyers are less likely to be able to envision themselves in your home when all of your personal touches are removed.
Declutter⊕ This seems straight forward and instinctual when you are preparing your home to be viewed by hundreds of people online and dozens of families in person, yet we sometimes need to take this a step further. When you organize your belongings and throw out things you don’t need, you may find yourself in the position my wife and I were in when we sold our first home together. We found that we had SO much “stuff” that I convinced her we needed to rent a storage unit and move the storage bins and extra furniture into. She was hesitant at first but now is a convert after we sold that home in only a few weeks. By placing these belongings in storage, we were able to open up the space to make it more visually appealing.
⊕Staging⊕ How do you showcase your home to make the appealing features stand out? We partner with Rooms in Bloom Home Staging and these ladies will come into your home and This is a service that I pay for to ensure your home is on display in the best possible light. We make excellent use of the available space, open up rooms that may have felt confined, and if we have to we’ll bring in some items to “pimp your home.”

MARKETING YOUR HOME

How is your home marketed? What kind of marketing budget does your real estate agent have to not only help you to make your home look the best, but also for it to be photographed the best and then marketed effectivey online? We know everyone goes online first to look at houses so “how” your home shows online is important. Do your photos make your home look better than it actually does? That’s a big mistake! Misrepresentation (eg. making rooms look bigger than they really are) brings the wrong kind of home buyer into your home. I call this “lunchbox letdown.” Not representing your home accurately in photos and online descriptions will deter agents from bringing other interested parties to view your home.

PRICING YOUR HOME

The most vital component in the process of listing your home and ensuring it is sold in a short period of time and for the most money possible, is the listing price. In fact this issue is SO important I have an entire blog post dedicated to explaining it. You can read this article here or watch the video here: bit.ly/MMPricing. I have also included my

Click to hear my full response about how real estate experts sell your home for more money

Click to hear my full response about how real estate experts                               sell your home for more money

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,000 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by downloading my free eBook.  Also for more great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.

Mark

Is NOW a Good Time to Buy a Home in Kitchener-Waterloo?

Is this really the best time to sell your home in Kitchener-Waterloo? With all of the competition for home buyers, is now a good time to buy a home in Waterloo Region? I address these questions in an informative Q&A session with one of my team members.

In this video, I’m answering questions about the current state of the real estate market in Waterloo region. This is important information for you if you are selling your home in Kitchener-Waterloo. If you are looking to buy your dream home and currently own a house, you can benefit from my 21 years of real estate expertise in answering timely questions about the market for home buyers. Click the video below to hear my answers to relevant questions for home sellers AND home buyers.

 

 

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,000 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by downloading my free eBook here. Also for more great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.

Living in Kitchener-Waterloo: Best Places for Foodies

buying a home in Waterloo Ontario

Restaurant Recommendations in Waterloo

 

Think the big city is the only place to get a really good meal? Don’t be fooled by the urban centers’ reputation. A smaller city can be just as gourmet as any metropolitan area. Kitchener-Waterloo has some fantastic spots that will satisfy even the most discerning foodie’s sensibilities. If you want to find out about Kitchener-Waterloo restaurants, this is a good place to find out!

Festivals

If you love an innovative food truck or fun food festival, Waterloo is a great place to eat on the street. There are numerous fairs featuring food of many ethnicities and origins. Each one offers an opportunity to try a new treat. The Annual Waterloo Food Festival is one of the best you can find anywhere.

The Waterloo Food Festival hosts outdoor events like the Evening Food Fair, the Outdoor Cocktail event and the Waterloo Family Fete, among others. There are also opportunities to have a seat at some of the trendiest eateries and enjoy the fair in air-conditioned comfort. You can try something new at a tasting or experience a masterclass and learn a new cooking technique. Don’t forget the competitions and live entertainment! This four-day event is a foodie’s gastronomic dream-come-true.

The Waterloo town calendar is packed with festivals, street fairs and cultural events. Just about any of these events will have a host of tempting delicacies for the discriminating food-lover. Culture Fest, Art Fest and the Big Music Festival are just a few of the annual opportunities to try a new food truck or sample a street cart. In 2015, the region even hosted the second Food Truck Fare in support of the Independent Living Centre of Waterloo Region.

UpTown Waterloo

UpTown Waterloo is the urban heart of the city. It is home to over 400 businesses including some incredible restaurants. This thriving city-center is a popular lunch and dinner-time destination and for lots of good reasons. Here are just a few to tempt your taste buds.

Beertown – Waterloo Town Square

Part old-school pub, part modern beer emporium and all great food – that’s Beertown in the Waterloo Town Square. The concept for Beertown is one of the powerful Charcoal Groups’ newest and it’s getting rave reviews from all types of customers. It features a “chef-driven” menu focused on all-natural ingredients and creative combinations.

This pub is constantly looking for ways to make beer more inventive and your dining experience more exciting. The menu ranges from traditional poutine to pork belly tacos, Beertown pad thai and a raw salad. There’s something for just about any taste here.

Nick & Nat’s Uptown 21

If you want the full foodie experience, try getting a seat at the chef’s table at Nick & Nat’s Uptown 21. This local spot emphasizes local fare. They’ve been listed in the prestigious “Where to Eat in Canada” guide for 5 consecutive years. This husband and wife team keeps the menu interesting by changing it up depending on what’s freshest right now. You could see a house cured pancetta on the menu or perhaps a hand-stretched mozzarella. For a treat on a budget, take a look at their 3 and 4 course prix fixe options.

King Street Trio Uptown

The ultimate in casual-but-cool, this eatery with an attitude lives in a 100-year-old historic building. You get the charm of a tin ceiling with the modern edge of an open-concept kitchen. Try the cozy dining room or the more intimate semi-private, 14 seat dining area. Fresh food and great value dominate the menu and the service is strong. They will even accommodate allergies issues and dietary preferences.

The Bauer Kitchen

Part of the powerhouse Charcoal Group, The Bauer Kitchen is a SoHo-inspired, up-market bistro. A trendy décor mix of industrial and reclaimed elements gives home to a strong menu of hearty dishes. Any restaurant that puts grilled salmon on the kids’ menu is really thinking about modern foodies and foodies-in-training!

For a decadent indulgence that touches on several current food trends, try the confit duck wings or the roasted bone marrow. A terrific array of burgers and sandwiches are available for lunch and dinner has some heavy-hitting dishes like short rib gnocchi and some lighter notes like an arugula salad with shaved beets, pickled peppers and Granny Smith apples.

Hillcrest House

If you’re craving something a little different, an experience instead of a mere meal, head over to the historic Hillcrest House Bed & Breakfast. Resting on a quiet street in the heart of Waterloo, close to all the attractions, this little gem hides a juicy little secret. It’s called “Trust the Fat Guy at Hillcrest House”.

It’s a ton of fun and you’ll learn a few things you can try at home too. This experience is an incredible opportunity to delve into the mind of Chef Stef, ask questions and take a few recipes home as a bonus. He’ll prepare several dishes right in front of you. The event runs about 3 hours and price will vary depending on your choice of menu items. (If you’d like to stay the night, you’ll get a discount on your room!).

There’s no shortage of foodie havens in Waterloo. Bring your appetite and try a few of our favorite spots. You’re sure to find something to impress your taste buds in the vibrant, exciting community of Waterloo. Have a favourite restaurant you want added to this list? Email me at mark@maurerteam.com!

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,000 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by getting a copy of my free eBook here. Also for great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.

Relocating to Kitchener-Waterloo? Resources To Help (Part 2)

Moving to Kitchener or Waterloo? We Can Help!

Moving to Kitchener or Waterloo? We Can Help!

The Kitchener-Waterloo area has a history that dates back to 1784, and this rich background means great things for its residents. With a regional population of nearly half a million people that’s growing fast, a variety of different industries, and an historically low unemployment rate, this is one area that is ideal for families, young professionals, and seniors alike. If you plan to move here,  it might be helpful to have some resources at your fingertips. Part 1 of our post took a look at moving companies you can use, how to get around the area, changing your address, the utility companies you may need to contact, and healthcare options while you’re here. Once you’ve moved, though, you’ll need more resources at your fingertips outside of the nuts and bolts of your daily life. Take a look at our continued list below.

Houses of Worship

As you look for the right place to fit into the Kitchener-Waterloo community, you may want to take a closer look at the many houses of worship in the area. With options that encompass all of the major faiths, you’re certain to find a place of worship that meets your needs here. This, however, is just an overview of the many worship options in the area, as exploring each would take far more than the confines of this blog post. For a more complete listing, please click here.

  1. Area Catholic Churches: With a number of Catholic congregations around the region, you’re certain to find services that meet your needs. Many also have associated schools for young children.
  2. George’s of Forest Hill: An Anglican church, this congregation offers a variety of worship services on Sunday and during the week as well as a church school for children. They also have book clubs, study groups, and family nights.
  3. Unity Centre: A non-denominational congregation, the Unity Centre offers fellowship for those of all faiths as well as a number of other programs.
  4. Stanley Park Community Church: A very welcoming church, Stanley Park is located right on the Route 8 line of the Grand River Transit, making it convenient for members and visitors alike.
  5. The Lutheran Churches of Kitchener-Waterloo: Our community has nine different Lutheran congregations to help meet your needs. Located across the area, there’s one near almost anywhere you decide to settle.
  6. Kitchener Gospel Temple: A community of faith that was initially founded in 1909, this church has a rich history and a wonderful congregation.
  7. Grandview Baptist Church: Easy to reach, this church offers Sunday services and much more. Perfect for worshipers of all ages, they offer great activities and a wonderful chance to connect with others.
  8. Waterloo Masjid: The Muslim Society of Waterloo & Wellington Counties offers services, events, and regular prayer times.
  9. Kitchener Masjid: Undergoing great renovations to help better meet the needs of Muslims in the area, this is a wonderful facility with a regular prayer schedule as well as other activities and events.
  10. Beth Jacob Congregation: Serving the local Jewish community since 1908, Beth Jacob offers modern Orthodox services as well as a number of other program options.
  11. The Rohr Chabad Centre: With services, classes, and even meals, Chabad is the best place to join the local Jewish community. Initially launched in December 2008, they serve a wide population, and can help you better connect once you’re here.
  12. Temple Shalom: A reform congregation, Temple Shalom draws members from across the area, including young Jewish families. They also have a growing religious school that combines study in Judacia with Hebrew training.

Schools in Waterloo Region

If you’re moving here with a family or you expect to have children while you’re here, never fear. This is a family-friendly community with lots of resources to help you settle in. Below is a listing of schools and care options to help you find the right resources for your family.

  1. Waterloo Region District: If you want your child to attend public schools, this is the place they’ll likely go. Encompassing nearly a hundred elementary schools and a number of secondary schools, you’ll find excellent staff and programs throughout the district.
  2. Waterloo Catholic Schools: Looking for a solid Catholic education for your child? With 47 different Catholic elementary schools and five secondary schools, this area offers an excellent selection to choose from for your child.
  3. Colleges and Universities: If you’re looking to further your own education or you have a student headed for college, you have several choices in the area. Conestoga College, Emmanuel Bible College, Heritage College & Seminary, University of Waterloo, and Wilfrid Laurier University all make their homes in this area.

Things to Do!

Worried you might not find anything to do while you’re here? That will never be an issue. There are so many great options you may have trouble keeping up. It’s possible you may even discover spots you haven’t had time to visit even if you’ve lived here for years.

  1. Kitchener Market: Looking for a feast your senses will love? This is the place to be. With food and wares that represent things from an international perspective it’s one spot you’ll want to visit regularly.
  2. Victoria Park: A prize spot in the heart of downtown, here you’ll find a playground, splash pad, and great walkways. There are winter rinks, a boathouse restaurant, and special events throughout the year.
  3. Doon Heritage Village: A beautiful living history village, there are more than 60 acres that show life in Waterloo in 1914. Every visit comes complete with interpreters dressed in 1914 clothing as well as animals and activities for the family.
  4. Waterloo Region Museum: This museum features two galleries, a main one that tells the story of the Waterloo region and a changing showcase gallery that has new exhibits on a regular basis. It’s worth a visit for you or the kids.
  5. Woodside National Historic Site: The boyhood home of William Lyon Mackenzie King, this house has been fully restored to the way it might have looked in the 1890s. A national treasure, it’s a must-see while you’re here.
  6. Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery: A destination for those who love contemporary art, this fine craft gallery showcases the best of Canadian ceramics and glass and offers numerous educational programs for children and adults alike.
  7. Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery: Emphasizing contemporary art throughout, here you’ll find frequently changing exhibitions and a 4,000 work permanent collection designed to feed your artistic side.
  8. Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony: Phenomenal performances dominate when you catch any of the shows in the symphony season. Consider a customized ticket package to catch the concerts you want to see most.
  9. The Registry Theatre: From great movie series to fantastic concerts and shoes, keep an eye on the schedule here to catch as much as you can.
  10. The Aud: A great place for ice and floor rentals, hall rentals, corporate meetings, and other special events, this complex is one you’ll want to visit on a regular basis.
  11. Chicopee Resort: In the winter, this is a great place to ski and snowboard. In the summer, they offer summer camps, disc golf, beach volleyball, and more. It’s the perfect place for some activity with the whole family.
  12. Iron Horse Trail: Need a place to walk, roller blade, or bike? This is it. Part of the Trans Canada Trail, it runs 5.5 kilometres and connects downtown Kitchener to uptown Waterloo.
  13. McLennan Park: Once a former landfill, this is a wonderful destination for everyone. It offers an accessible play-structure and splash pad, beach volleyball and basketball courts, a skate park, a BMX bike park, a leash-free dog park, pedestrian trails, a toboggan hill, and gazebo you can rent for any event.
  14. Centre in the Square: Looking for fantastic shows and events? This is the venue to visit. There’s not a bad seat in the house, so check the schedule regularly.
  15. The Museum: With five floors of interactive exhibits, this is a great place for you and the family alike. Lots of everything is packed inside, and imagination is the key word here.
  16. Joseph Schneider Haus: If you want to step back in time, this is the place to do it. A dynamic museum, this local landmark is Kitchener’s oldest home. Take the family and take a closer look at the history behind this amazing area.

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,000 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by getting a copy of my free eBook here. Also for more great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.

Preparing to Buy a House in Kitchener-Waterloo: A Quick-Prep Guide!

Kitchener-Waterloo Home Buying Guide

Home Buying Guide

You’ve spent hours dreaming about the possibilities involved. Maybe you’re envisioning a fireplace in the living room. Perhaps a nice sunroom and reading area. And well, that perfect little breakfast nook would be nice! After the dreams, though, reality begins to sink in. Looking to buy a house in Kitchener-Waterloo Ontario is a huge life step, and it takes a bit of preparation before you can even start the shopping process. With so much to think about and do, where should you focus your energy? We have compiled a quick guide to help you prepare to buy a house in Kitchener or Waterloo Ontario.

Down Payment Funds

The majority of potential homeowners can’t afford the entire purchase price of a home upfront, so a mortgage is typically necessary. Depending on your credit history, down payment requirements can vary from bank to bank but they’re usually about ten percent of the purchase price. Saving that money for your down payment is an absolute must. You may even want to set up a separate account to help you keep back the funds you need for the home of your dreams. The more you add to that account on a regular basis, the better off you will be when going to potential lenders when it’s time to obtain a mortgage for your home.

Prepare Your Credit

There aren’t many lending companies and banks that will offer you a mortgage without the right credit score, and it may take some work to get there. If you currently have a problematic credit score, you may want to sit down with a loan officer now to look at what you can do to improve it before you’re ready to buy. Simple steps like checking your credit report often, paying bills on time, paying down credit cards and/or loan balances, and dealing with any problem credit report entries is an absolute must. A credit counselor can help guide you with regard to any other steps you may want to take.

Save for Additional Expenses

The cost of the down payment and closing expenses are hardly all you’re going to be facing with a house purchase. There are always little things that come up when you get ready to buy a home. Having funds set aside specifically to deal with those issues has to factor into your readiness checklist. Think about the cost of the move, any repairs you might want to do to the home, and any additional furniture you may need to purchase once you move in.

Understand Financial Terminology

Mortgage loans are steeped in financial terms, and it can take some time to get your bearings in this overwhelming arena. Learning as much as you can about mortgages and the terms a loan officer might use as he or she is getting ready to offer you a deal, is essential. You need to become familiar with the types of mortgages available, the terms they use to describe them, and what’s required in order to obtain each type. Most banks have first time home buyer guides posted to their websites to help make sense of terms like APR and Good Faith Estimate. It’s still a good idea to utilize a variety of resources to ensure you get the best possible picture of what you’re going to be expected to have knowledge of.  Waterloo Region mortgage broker Rosanna Congi has a Mortgage Glossary you can access on her website.

Consider Various Housing Types

Your dreams may be big, but you have to think about the housing types available in the Kitchener-Waterloo neighborhood in which you want to live. Single-family homes are great, but in some cases condos can offer many of the same amenities with lower costs. Investment properties that include multi-family housing that may allow you to live in one unit while you play the role of landlord for the other unit(s) could be the right choice for you as well. The goal is to understand what is available and what can meet your dreams.

Find the Right Realtor

Not all real estate agents are created equal. There are many in Kitchener-Waterloo who will help you find exactly what you need and others who leave you feeling somewhat disappointed. You want to find a Realtor® who will help you find just what you want in a home, not what they want to sell you. Conducting your own research is always helpful. You may want to consider a team versus a singular agent. You need help and advice immediately. With an individual agent you’re likely to stay in a holding pattern while he or she helps other clients. With a team, you’ll always have access to a professional Realtor® who is familiar with your situation.

Although “right now” may not be the “right time” for you to buy a house in Kitchener-Waterloo, preparing yourself both physically and mentally for the world of home ownership can take a bit of time. The longer you give yourself, the more likely it is that you’ll truly be ready when the time comes.

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,000 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by getting a copy of my free eBook here. Also for great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.

Water Damage: What Will My Insurance Cover?

Water Damage to Your Kitchener Waterloo Home

This blog post was first published on the website of Restoration 1 Kitchener. We have modified it for   our readers - we hope you find it useful.

Water has damaged your home. And while that is in no way any fun at all, at least your homeowner’s insurance is going to cover the cost of the cleanup and remediation, right? That’s a relief at least. Except if you are not the kind of person who pays minute attention to the insurance coverage you buy and pay for then sadly, in some cases, the answer might be no.

The Basics

In Canada, your basic property owner’s insurance will cover certain kinds of water damage pretty much as standard. If a pipe burst on your washing machine and flooded the laundry room then yes, your insurance should help pay to fix the damage. By the same token if a particularly bad rainstorm causes water to enter your home (maybe because it breaks a hole in the roof or floods the basement), you will not be covered. According to Jack Tu of BDA Insurance, water coming from a rainstorm that floods your basement is NOT covered in Canada.  Jack says, “We are currently the only G8 country in the world that does not offer flood coverage.  Flood is defined as overland water coming into the home – for example through a window well, doors, etc.  Additionally, water coming in through cracks in your foundation is not covered.”

In very basic terms almost all standard property owners’ insurance policies will cover “clean water damage.” What does that mean? Water that has not come from below ground or from a sewer, which is the case in both of the examples we cited above.

One thing to watch out for though; damage from frozen pipes. Technically this would be a clean water incident and you would imagine it would be covered. However, for many insurance companies this is a really grey area and coverage is not assured, especially if it can be proved you were away on vacation or something similar at the time.

Dealing with Dirty Water Damage Costs

A standard property owner’s insurance policy may or may not automatically cover ‘dirty water’ damage. Dirty water damage would be considered to be things like toilet overflows or flooding caused by a sewer pipe backup, even if the fault was not yours and the municipality you live in was actually responsible for maintaining the sewers involved.

Go through the small print on your policy and if you are not sure if dirty water damage is covered, give your insurance company a call to check. Even if it’s not though you can purchase add on insurance at a low cost to cover these kinds of dirty water incidents and it is something well worth considering given how much damage such things could cost.

Overland Floods

Believe it or not right now, in Canada, you can’t actually purchase specific insurance that covers overland flooding. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada only a very small number of properties are at risk for such a thing. Therefore, in the eyes of the insurers there would be too few people paying in to such insurance to make it worth their while offering a specific overland flood insurance policy in the way that insurers in the United States may.

So Do I Have the Right Insurance Coverage?

The only way you can accurately answer that question is to have a chat with your insurance broker. As your home is such a huge investment it always pays to be on top of things like this – and make sure you understand every last word of the fine print regardless. It’s always better to be safe than sorry after all.

We recommend that you take a few moments to review the insurance policy you have in place before you need to know the specifics about your coverage. You’re going to want to make sure you have the right coverage for the biggest asset you own, your home in Kitchener Waterloo.

If you have any questions about home insurance we recommend Jack Tu of BDA Insurance to our customers. You can contact Jack at 226.606.9622 or email him at jtu@teambda.ca. We hope you never have to deal with water damage to your home but if you do – contact the experts in water damage, Restoration 1 Kitchener. You can reach them through their 24 hour emergency hotline at 519.505.4785 or visit their website at http://www.kitchener.restoration1.ca.

Find out how I’ve helped more than 2,000 families buy and sell homes in Kitchener-Waterloo by getting a copy of my free eBook here. Also for great real estate videos you won’t find anywhere else, subscribe to my YouTube channel. I love to share my expert knowledge so if you have any real estate questions feel free to call me at 310-SOLD or email me at mark@maurerteam.com.