Real Estate Marketing Solutions
Farming and Referral Programs, Branding

TREB wins battle with Competition Bureau

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The Competition Tribunal dismissed, with costs, the anti-competitive complaint of the Competition Bureau against TREB yesterday. Read about the Tribunal’s decision on REM's Website and The Toronto Star.

This is a major victory for TREB which has maintained that the consumer’s right to privacy should prevent sensitive information such as the sales price history of homes from being openly circulated on the Internet through so-called VOWs (virtual office websites).  We applaud this decision for a number of reasons but primarily because the MLS® system was built and paid for by REALTORS® over a very long period of time and, as a result, should not be made available as a “public utility”, even if a minority of REALTORS® want open access to support their particular business model. We believe that, since the MLS® system is an asset of CREA, only REALTORS® as a whole should be able to alter the accessibility of the system. Clearly most REALTORS® do not support the change sought by the Competition Bureau and so the Tribunal’s decision, regardless of how it arrived at it, was the correct one. Comments?

Scotiabank CEO Rick Waugh is the first banker to openly critique Finance Minister Jim Flaherty

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Scotiabank CEO Rick Waugh has become the first banker to critique Finance Minister Jim Flaherty for openly meddling in the mortgage market. While Mr. Flaherty’s concern for the country’s overall level of household debt and its potential impact on our economy is perhaps warranted, we believe that this concern should not manifest itself by interfering in the pricing practices of individual lenders. Both the Bank of Montreal and Manulife Financial were strongly pressured by Mr. Flaherty to suspend their recent 5-year fixed mortgage rate special offers. Our opinion is that the Department of Finance and the Bank of Canada should resort to typical measures of government policy (such as the setting of the central bank interest rate) in exercising their mandate to protect our economy. Moral suasion is one thing but open interference in the price setting or promotional practices of lenders is another matter altogether. What do you think? A few articles on the topic can be found here and here.

Microsite Videos

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More and more of our clients are posting their own videos on the microsites that are associated with either their Realty Sweep™ or Keep in Touch™ newsletter. That’s really great to see! If you’re farming, it’s almost like having a “fireside chat” with your farm area prospects each and every month. If you’re working your referral base, it’s like being able to speak to your entire database of contacts in one fell swoop!

Even if you’re too busy to record your own video, there are some other easy solutions to customize your microsite content. One great example is simply posting a virtual tour of a key listing and then adding some brief commentary in the personal message box.

Ready for REALTOR® Connections & REALTOR® Quest 2013

Our new trade show booth, which sports our new branding and slogan, is here and ready to go! What do you think? Leave us your feedback in the comments section below.

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We'll see some of you at the next REALTOR® Connections 2013 (Hamilton-Burlington) on March 27th, 2013, and of course everyone from TREB at REALTOR® Quest on May 1st, 2013. Be sure to stop by our booth to hear about our show specials! If you are thinking about starting some more marketing soon, don't miss out!

New Window Envelopes for your Precision Realty Sweep™

Effective with our March issue, we will be adding a window envelope to your Precision Realty Sweep™ program. This window will fully reveal the masthead of your newsletter providing your format is either Classic or Contemporary. If you have a Booklet format, you may want to consider switching to one of the other formats to gain this advantage – just let us know!

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Also if your combined Precision Realty Sweep™ volume is over 1,000 units, we can now print your own logo (black only) on the outer envelope. Please let us know if you would like to take advantage of this new feature.

Please contact Jenn at 416-236-0543 Ext. 221 if you have any questions.

We’ve Moved!

In addition to the launch of our new website, we've also moved our office.  Our new location at 642A The Queensway is large, bright and cheerful. We think our downstairs neighbours, Get A Better Mortgage, would agreeoffice

A Brand New Look! A Brand New Business Building Concept!

Welcome to our brand new site complete with our new corporate branding and an entirely new look. We are very excited about it!site

RE/MAX Kick Start 2013

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It was great to see everyone at RE/MAX Kick Start 2013!

Thanks for dropping by our booth and having a look at our companion microsites demo. It was a good way for us to introduce new and existing clients to some of the new features recently added to the Realty Sweep™ and Keep In Touch™ programs.

If you would like to learn more about our microsites and how to really engage with your farm area and contact database, give us a call or email for a one-on-one training over the phone!

Toronto leading the western world in high highrise development

According to a new study by the Chicago-based Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, tall building construction in Toronto is outpacing every other city in the entire Western Hemisphere. There are currently 15 skyscrapers under construction which will exceed 45 storeys. That means that there will a total of 44 high rise buildings of over 150 metres in height by 2015. That's more than triple the amount that existed in 2005 when there were only 13 high rise buildings in this category. Of course, virtually all of this dramatic surge in high rise development has been fuelled by the construction of new high rise condos.

CAAMP versus Jim Flaherty

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The mortgage rule changes introduced on July 9th by the Department of Finance have had a pronounced effect on the Canadian real estate market. As of that date, the maximum amortization period for government insured mortgages was reduced from 30 to 25 years and a $1 million purchase price ceiling for government insured mortgages was introduced as well. Since these new rules were put into effect, there is no denying that the market has cooled substantially in terms of volume. In addition, resale prices have also started a softening trend, although they are still up marginally versus year ago in most markets. There is widespread agreement that these are the facts - but there is much less agreement as to whether this is a good or bad thing.