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(NC) What do you do if your income property is up to code but prospective tenants just aren't knocking at your door? Whether you're renting out a room, a lower level apartment, or a house, these tips will improve your return on investment by adding value to a living space.
• Make an instant impression. Use bold wallpaper on a wall visible from the entry way to create a focal point for prospective tenants.
• Focus your upgrades in spaces where they'll be noticed. If re-doing the whole washroom isn't an option, try adding a new functional yet durable and stylish faucet such as one from Delta's Leland bath collection from deltafaucet.ca.
• Save money on utilities by installing energy saving appliances and fixtures. The extra savings can go back into your pocket.
• Help prospective tenants visualize living in your space. Decorate with personal touches such as a colourful pair of rain boots or a stack of books on the floor. www.newscanada.com
How to save for life's milestones
(NC)—So many important events in life seem to come at once, so how do we find enough cash to cover your first car, dream wedding, and a brand new house?
According to the TD Canada Trust Report on Savings, we don't—at least not upfront. When polled, 40 percent of Canadians say they find it a real struggle or impossible to save and many rely on loans and lines of credit, credit cards and the pockets of friends and family to fill in the gaps.
Raymond Chun, a senior vice president at TD Canada Trust offers his advice on what to consider when saving and budgeting for three of life's big milestones:
1. Your first car—Cars are depreciating assets that lose value significantly over time. Don't spend more than you need to or pay interest longer than you have to. Aim to save at least 20 per cent of the cost for the down payment. Larger down payments will lower your monthly payment and could save you hundreds of dollars in the long run.
2. Down payment on your first home—Aim to save 20 per cent of the purchase price, but the more you pay upfront the more you'll save in the long run. Open a high interest savings account and automate your savings with a pre-authorized transfer. As a first time home buyer, you could also consider withdrawing some of your RRSP savings to put towards your down payment, but remember you'll have to pay it back.
3. Wedding—A dream wedding lasts one day, but if it means you will be paying off the event for the next few years, you might want to think about scaling back a bit. The average cost of a wedding in Canada is $20,000, so consider putting some of these funds towards building a future or paying down debt.
Chun also reminds us to take advantage of free tools banks offer, like online cash flow calculators and budgeting templates, to help you save and budget for life's big milestones.