One of the best parts about living in Edmonton is the many winter-themed activities, events and attractions that make it such a “cool” place to live. If you’re looking for a few fun, affordable, family-friendly events to add to your calendar this season, here are a few ideas:

1. Snowshoe and Stargaze

When: Saturdays, December through February 15th

Marvel at the starry night sky as you snowshoe your way around Elk Island – one of Canada’s many revered national parks and conservation reserves. This one-of-a-kind experience takes visitors on a short, guided snowshoe hike with interactive interpretation of the constellations above. Fireside snacks and refreshments are provided at no extra charge. 

2. Experience the Deep Freeze 

When:…

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The New Year is just around the corner, and with it comes some great news for Edmonton home buyers. Here are five reasons why now is the right time to purchase a new Edmonton home:

1. Record-Low Home Prices 

According to a recent report released by the Canadian Real Estate Association, Edmonton’s benchmark home price has now reached the ultra-affordable low of $316,200. Having fallen 8.29% over the last several years, homes are now being sold at prices not seen since the buyer’s market of 2013 – where the benchmark price was only slightly less at $314,500.

Home buyers interested in detached single-family dwellings and townhomes can expect to see some particularly substantial savings compared to last year, with average prices dropping over…

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Gross Debt Service and Total Debt Service ratios are the two primary calculations lenders use during the loan application process. Together, these ratios play an integral role in determining your ability to qualify for a mortgage and how much home you can afford.

Here’s what you need to know:

GDS Ratios

Your GDS ratio refers to the percentage of your annual income needed to cover monthly housing costs – specifically your mortgage payment (principal and interest) as well as taxes, condo fees (50%, if applicable) and heating. As per the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), this percentage should be no higher than 35% when applying for a mortgage loan. 

How to Calculate Your GDS Ratio:

Your GDS ratio is the sum of your monthly…

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While downsizing offers countless benefits (the chance to save money and pursue your retirement dreams, for example), making the move to a smaller home can be altogether overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be! Here are nine helpful tips to make your downsizing process easier:

1. Have a Plan

Reduce downsizing stress by planning ahead. Start by making a list of manageable goals with a commitment to stick to them – even if it’s as simple as tackling one drawer a day, over time, every little bit helps.

2. Start With the Obvious

Begin by clearing out the rooms you won’t have in your new home. Recreation or family rooms, additional bedrooms and bathrooms and home offices are all good places to start.

3. Practice the Rule of Three

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