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Canada’s Peter Pig’s Money Counter

NEW Canada’s Peter Pig’s Money Counter
Learning about money is fun with Peter Pig. Kids can practice identifying, counting and saving money while learning fun facts about Canadian currency with this interactive educational game.
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Give your students a deeper understanding of money management with curriculum offered by Choices & Decisions: Taking charge of your financial life™.
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Selling your home sweet home

Selling your home sweet home

By Carla Hindman, Director of Financial Education, Visa Canada

Spring seems to be a typical time for people to test the housing market by listing their homes. Interest rates have remained low over the last couple of years, so more people have been thinking about taking the plunge before the rates start to rise.

If you're planning to sell your home, there are a lot of things to consider. Many factors can negatively impact your being able to attract buyers and ultimately get the price you want. Sometimes there's not much you can do:

  • If you're located on a busy street or the local school district is subpar, you probably won't fetch as much as for the same house in a better neighbourhood.
  • If your house is the only contemporary model in a sea of colonials or if your remodeled McMansion is surrounded by two bedroom/one bathroom cottages, buyers might be turned off. Not everyone wants to stand out from the crowd.
  • If you started remodeling and didn't complete the job, many people won't want to take that on, even with a significant reduction in price.

However, there are many relatively minor changes that may boost your home's marketability. For example:

  • If your interior or exterior walls are painted with bold colors or textures, it might be worth toning it down with a more neutral palette.
  • If you can afford it, have your home professionally staged, since stagers know how to maximize space and show off a home's strong points (while hiding its defects). But if you're using your own furnishings, thin them out.
  • Minimize personal photos and tchotchkes – while they are meaningful to you, they can leave the appearance of clutter.
  • Mismatched appliances, cabinetry and plumbing fixtures stand out like sore thumbs. The same goes for worn floors or carpeting. Discuss with your realtor which improvements might be worth the investment.
  • Make sure your yard is well-tended and has at least basic landscaping. Overgrown weeds and abandoned junk don't help your curb appeal. The same principle applies for common areas if you live in a condominium.

If there are empty homes in your neighbourhood, work with your neighbours to keep an eye on them. Take turns mowing the lawn, picking up trash and removing graffiti. Anything you can do to bring up the quality of the neighbourhood will improve your chance of selling.

Make sure to talk to your financial advisor or tax professional to find out what the tax implications are for your home sale. If it's not your principal residence, different tax laws apply.

This article is intended to provide general information and should not be considered legal, tax or financial advice. It's always a good idea to consult a tax or financial advisor for specific information on how certain laws apply to your situation and about your individual financial situation.

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