1. Potentially dangerous work or work that requires a certain amount of skill should be done by a professional!

2. Clean your tools, have your cutting blades sharpened, and check any electrical equipment

3. Clear plants and shrubs. If they are too close they can find their way into cracks and holes in the exterior walls of home, garage and shed, and can cause damage

4. Check trees for interference with electric lines and other structures. Consult an arborist and have them professionally trimmed if necessary

5. Low areas in the yard or next to any foundation should be filled with compacted soil. Water pools in these low areas can create a breeding ground for insects in the summer.

Interest Rates Hold Steady

The Bank of Canada announced on January 20, 2016 that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 1/2 per cent. The next scheduled date for announcing the overnight rate target is March 9, 2016.

Source: Bank of Canada


Changes to Downpayment Rules

Effective February 15, 2016, the minimum down payment for new insured mortgages has increased from 5 per cent to 10 per cent for the portion of the house price above $500,000. The 5 per cent minimum down payment for properties up to $500,000 remains unchanged. Canadians who already hold mortgages will not be affected by this announcement.

Source: Department of Finance Canada