11 Apr

Adulting VI: Buying Real Estate

Adulting with Marty

This event featured a topic that you’ve all been asking for. We brought in our friend and expert Marty Staniforth of Staniforth Real Estate to discuss that elusive adulting goal of buying real estate! Marty has carved out a niche helping first-time buyers. 

We discussed things like:

  • The steps to take when considering buying your first property
  • What specifics Marty would have us consider when working with a real estate professional
  • Interesting pieces of overall guidance from Marty on the search, offer, and acquisition process, along with some thought-provoking tips & quotes

As a bonus, you’ll find photos from the event below!


Marty’s Adulting Advice

Some good questions to ask a potential real estate professional:

  • How long have you been in Real Estate?

  • What do you enjoy most about your job?

  • What gives you an advantage over other agents?

  • How much capacity do you have right now to take on a new client?

  • Can you walk me through the home buying process?

First-Time Homebuyers Program At-a Glance

The First-Time Homebuyers’ Program reduces or eliminates the amount of property transfer tax you pay when you purchase your first home. If you qualify for the program, you may be eligible for either a full or partial exemption for the tax.

Do I qualify?

To qualify for a full exemption, at the time the property is purchased you must:

  • Be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident
  • Have lived in B.C. for 12 consecutive months immediately before the date you register the property or filed at least 2 income tax returns as a B.C. resident in the last 6 years
  • Have never owned an interest in a principal residence anywhere in the world at any time
  • Have never received a First-Time Homebuyers’ exemptions or refund

The property must:

  • Be located in BC

  • Only be used as your principle residence

  • Have a fair market value of $475,000 or less if registered on or before February 21, 2017, OR $500,000 or less if registered on or after February 22, 2017

  • Be 0.5 hectares (1.24 acres) or smaller

You may qualify for a partial exemption from the tax if the property:

  • Has a fair market value less than $500,000 if registered on or before February 21, 2017, OR $525,000 if registered on or after February 22, 2017.

  • Is larger than 0.5 hectares

  • Has another building on the property other than the principle residence

Event Photos

31 Jan

Adulting V: Wills & Taxes

Adulting with Elizabeth

After our intro event, we conducted a highly scientific survey and based our sessions on your feedback. We brought in another expert –  this time Elizabeth Mah from Paperclip Law – to talk about wills.

We discussed things like:

  • How to do tax season right
  • What questions Elizabeth would have us ask ourselves in determining if we even need a will.
  • Overall guidance from Elizabeth on how to be proactive rather than reactive when it comes to protecting your money.


You’ll find photos of the event below!

Tax Tips with Dan & Rach

Some tax tips for you brought to you by the folks at Wealthsimple.

  1. File on time.
  2. Actually, file early.
  3. For a lot of us, the best thing you can do for your tax bill (and your future) is to contribute to your RRSP before March 1.
  4. If you got married (or are common-law married), get RRSP-married too.
  5. Marriage/Common Law part two: bundle your charitable contributions for a better bang/buck ratio (*more tax credit info below)
  6. When it comes to deductions, leave no stone unturned.
  7. Invest your tax refund as soon as you get it.
  8. If your refund is too big, don’t congratulate yourself – make some changes.

*First-Time Charitable Donor’s Tax Credit: if you’re donating for the first time, you can claim the first-time donor’s tax credit. As a first-time donor, you can claim an extra federal tax credit of 25 percent on your first $1,000 of donations. This works out to the equivalent of a tax credit of 40% on your first $200 in donations, and 54% on amounts above $200. More info on charitable donations and tax credits here.

Elizabeth’s Adulting Advice

Do I Need A Will?

Well, first off, what’s a will? A will is a legal document that tells everyone what to do with your stuff (and kids) after you die. In BC, it:

  • Deals with your property and assets so that they pass to the people you choose, when you want them to receive it, in the form you choose (outright or over time through a trust), and in the most tax-efficient way; and
  • Ensures that your kids are cared for by the people you designate, and have access to assets for their well-being and benefit.

Great, with that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the thoughts that may be going through your mind right now.

1. Doesn’t everything just automatically go to my family, spouse and children?

Not necessarily – have you added them as joint owners? Have you designated them as beneficiaries?

2. I’ve told my spouse and children about what I want so they can just take care of it.

In BC, “telling” doesn’t count. You either have a will that works, or you don’t.

3. I’ve just downloaded a will from Google or bought a will kit when I was picking up some shampoo the other day, so I’m good, right?

Well, it depends on whether you signed it properly and have covered off all your assets.


Ugh, maybe a few holes? Time to think about checking this off the to-do list. Elizabeth even has a few suggestions for what you need to write a will.


Event Photos