Importance of Property Agreements for Common Law Partners in Alberta

When it comes to property rights and distribution, many people are aware of the laws that apply to married couples. However, for common law partners in Alberta, know the law. It is crucial for individuals in common law relationships to understand the importance of having agreements in place regarding property and its distribution. This blog post will highlight the significance of such agreements and the potential implications of not having them.

The Family Property Act in Alberta:

The Family Property Act, in effect in Alberta, addresses property division for common law partners. Under this act, the court has the authority to make a distribution of property between the spouses or adult interdependent partners based on the following factors:

Exempted Property: Certain types of property, such as gifts, inheritances, and property acquired before the relationship began, may be exempt from distribution.

Valuation Date: The value of the property to be distributed is determined as of the trial date, unless a written agreement states otherwise.

Just and Equitable Distribution: The court considers various factors, as outlined in section 8 of the act, to determine a fair and equitable distribution of property.

Income and Acquired Property: Property acquired by a spouse or adult interdependent partner during the relationship, including income derived from the original property, may be subject to distribution.

Importance of Agreements:

Having clear agreements in place regarding property rights and distribution is crucial for common law partners in Alberta. Here's why:

Protection of Individual Interests: A written agreement allows partners to define and protect their individual property interests. It can outline which properties are individually owned and which are jointly owned, reducing potential disputes in the future.

Control over Distribution: With an agreement, partners have control over how their property will be distributed in the event of separation. They can specify the division of assets and debts, ensuring a fair and mutually agreed-upon outcome.

Avoiding Legal Complexities: Without a written agreement, the court will rely on common law principles to determine property division. This can lead to complex legal proceedings and uncertainties about the outcome, potentially causing stress and financial burden.

Addressing Contributions: Agreements can address the contributions made by each partner during the relationship, whether financial or non-financial. This ensures that contributions are considered when distributing property, minimizing potential unfairness.

Clarity and Peace of Mind: By having a well-drafted agreement in place, common law partners can have peace of mind, knowing that their property rights are protected and that they have a clear plan in case of separation.

Common law partners in Alberta should understand the significance of having agreements in place regarding property and its distribution. The Family Property Act provides a framework for property division, but having a written agreement allows partners to define their own rules and protect their individual interests. Consultation with a family lawyer is recommended to ensure that agreements are properly drafted and legally binding. By taking proactive steps, common law partners can establish clarity, protect their rights, and avoid potential disputes in the future.

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Pre-Approval vs Pre-Qualifying For a Mortgage

Pre-qualification and pre-approval are two different steps in the mortgage application process.

Pre-qualification is the initial step in the process, in which a lender will ask you for basic information about your income, debt, and assets. Based on this information, the lender will give you an estimate of how much you might be able to borrow. Pre-qualification is typically done online or over the phone and is a relatively quick process.

Pre-approval, on the other hand, is a more detailed process that involves submitting documentation to the lender to verify your income, assets, and creditworthiness. This typically involves filling out an application and providing documentation such as T-4's, tax returns, bank statements, and pay stubs. The lender will then review your application and credit history to determine how much they are willing to lend you and at what interest rate.

Pre-approval is more thorough than pre-qualification and provides a more accurate estimate of how much you can borrow. It also gives you a better idea of what your interest rate and monthly mortgage payment might be. Because pre-approval requires more documentation and a more detailed review by the lender, it typically takes longer than pre-qualification.

In summary, pre-qualification is a quick estimate of how much you might be able to borrow, while pre-approval is a more thorough process that provides a more accurate estimate of how much you can borrow and at what interest rate.

Reach out with your questions and if you need a mortgage broker, I can connect you to a like-minded individual.

Jason Streich⁠
Greater Calgary Real Estate⁠
403 807 2204⁠⁠

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Source: Pre-Approval vs Pre-Qualifying For a Mortgage | Greater Calgary Real Estate | Feb 24th, 2023 


What Does Inflation Mean For A Real Estate Market?

Inflation typically means that the overall cost of goods and services in an economy is increasing. In the real estate market, this can lead to higher home prices as the cost of building materials, labor, and other expenses associated with buying and selling homes increases.

Additionally, if inflation is coupled with a strong economy, demand for housing may also increase, further driving up prices. However, it's important to note that inflation alone does not determine real estate prices, it is a complex market that is influenced by various factors.

Jason Streich⁠
Greater Calgary Real Estate⁠
403 807 2204⁠

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Source: What Does Inflation Mean For A Real Estate Market? | Greater Calgary Real Estate | Jan 27th, 2023


Before heading into the long weekend...
I want to say a massive THANK YOU to the most incredible clients in Calgary!

The year has had a good start and as we approach the Spring market, I can feel it getting busier. You deserve the best experience and being prepared prior to listing will help keep you ahead of the curve when the Spring market arrives.

What’s in it for you?
- A Fun Client-First Experience
- Home Staging Assistance
- Professional Photography & Videography with Dzyne Culture
- Refined Listing & Marketing Strategy
- Systems to keep you updated & in charge

When you’re ready, call/text (403) 807-2204, send me a DM, or email I love to help!

Housing Taxes and Benefits for 2023

Effective January 1, 2023

Anti Flipping Tax  - Profits from properties held for less than 12 months are fully taxed with certain exceptions for unexpected life events like death or divorce. This ensures investors pay their share and are an active role in lowering home prices. 

Speculation Tax – Effective May 7th, 2022, The Goods and Services Tax/ Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST) will be applied to all assignment sales of new construction or substantially renovated residential housing. Note, an assignment sale is when a property is resold before it’s been built or lived in.

Vacant Home Tax – Foreign-owned underused housing will have a 1% annual vacant homes tax to help make more homes available, the market more affordable and to ensure non-resident owners of Canadian housing pay their share. 

Foreign Buyers Ban – Foreign purchasing will be halted for 2 years effective January 1st, 2023 ensuring housing is used as Canadian homes and not as financial assets for foreign investors.

Benefits for Buyers in 2023 - The First-Time Home Buyer’s Tax Credit doubled to $1,500 in direct support to home buyers to offset the increasing costing costs involved in the home buying process. January 1st, 2023 saw the introduction of a refundable Multigeneration Home Renovation Tax Credit which provides $7,500 to support the construction of secondary suites for senior family members or other adults with needs like disability.  

Tax-Free First Home Savings Account (FHSA) If you contribute $8,000 per year to buy a home, it’s the equivalent of the government offering you a non-taxable gift. Unlike the HBP, you don’t need to pay back the amount, even if the withdrawals are not used on a down payment for a home. However, those withdrawals will be taxable.

Reach out with any questions! It would be a privilege to serve as your Realtor.

Jason Streich⁠
Greater Calgary Real Estate⁠
403 807 2204⁠

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Source: Housing Taxes and Benefits for 2023 | Greater Calgary Real Estate | November 26th, 2022


How Do Interest Rates Affect Our Real Estate Market?

The real estate market can be significantly impacted by interest rates. When they’re low, it’s more affordable to borrow money to purchase a home which increases the demand and raises prices. When interest rates are high, it’s more difficult and less affordable to purchase a home which decreases demand and lowers prices.

Any change in interest rates can impact existing mortgage and the value of homes. They are crucial in understanding the overall health of the real estate market. If you have any questions about buying or selling, connect anytime! It would be a privilege to serve as your Realtor.

Jason Streich⁠
Greater Calgary Real Estate⁠
403 807 2204⁠

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Source: How Do Interest Rates Affect Our Real Estate Market | Greater Calgary Real Estate | Jan 27th, 2023


Common Real Estate Terms

This month I am sharing a list of some of the more common terms you may hear regarding real estate transactions. If you have any questions on these or any other real estate-related concerns, please feel free to reach out to me. I’ll be happy to help you out!

Jason Streich⁠
Greater Calgary Real Estate⁠
403 807 2204⁠⁠


Canada Greener Homes Grant

Saving energy saves you money! Buildings, including our homes, account for 18% of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions. The government wants to help Canadians make where they live more energy-efficient. This means homes will be more comfortable and more affordable to maintain while also supporting our environmental objectives. ⁠

The Canada Greener Homes Grant will help homeowners make their homes more energy-efficient, create new jobs across Canada for energy advisors, grow our domestic green supply chains, and fight climate change.⁠

Participants are eligible for up to $5,600 total under the initiative. Updates will be provided over the life of the initiative to keep homeowners informed. As part of our work, we are committed to ensuring Greener Homes reaches diverse Canadians including those living in remote and northern communities and those with limited internet access. ⁠

Currently, work is being done on building a diverse network of energy advisors to provide career opportunities to all Canadians and to meet the need of our communities.⁠

For more information please click here

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