November 2013 - Property information statements myths

November 2013 - Hammer Home News
Dear Friends,
This month I decided to discuss some myths relating to the the Seller Property Information Statements, known in our industry as the SPIS. The myths below have been best explained by an article written by Bob Aaron, Real Estate Columnist for The Star, published in August, enjoy and please send me your feedback about the SPIS, what do you think of this document, did you find it important in your most recent real estate transaction?
As a result of its promotion by the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA), the seller’s property information statement (SPIS) continues to be a source of never-ending business for litigation lawyers and endless grief for unlucky buyers and sellers who are being swept into the bottomless pit of lawsuits because they used it.
It’s time to debunk some of the myths surrounding the form, many of them promoted by OREA and its industry apologists. Here they are:
· Myth: Commonplace advice for sellers signing the form is Liars Beware. Nothing could be further from the truth. The real reason sellers often get sued is not because they lie but because the SPIS is complicated, highly technical, misleading and highly ambiguous. It is impossible to complete the form fully and accurately without expert advice from industry professionals. And judging from more than 200 Canadian lawsuits, even the professionals get it wrong sometimes.
· Myth: When buyers are faced with a home for sale for which the SPIS is not provided, they offer less money than they otherwise would have. This fallacy has never been supported by a shred of statistical or anecdotal evidence.
· Myth: Buyers become suspicious when an SPIS is not provided, and in many communities “this tactic usually creates a stigma on the property.” Again, this myth is unsupported by any reliable evidence.
· Myth: Signing an SPIS may prevent possible legal action because known defects or problems are disclosed. My research provides no support for this proposition.
· Myth: Using the SPIS reduces the chances of serious problems that can lead to litigation and may prevent possible legal action. In my view, industry experience proves otherwise.
· Myth: When sellers make a disclosure that is complete and accurate, their chances of being sued virtually disappear. An examination of court cases involving hidden defects puts the lie to this statement. When a house contains concealed defects which may or may not be known at the time of sale, sellers may get sued even when they do not sign the SPIS.  While refusing to sign an SPIS is never an absolute shield from litigation, signing the form exponentially raises the chances of being sued.
Let me know your thoughts on this topic, please email me at
Hope to see you soon, enjoy the snow!



Canadian Home Sales fall back in October

Ottawa, ON, November 15, 2013 – According to statistics released today by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), national home sales declined in October 2013.

  • National home sales declined by 3.2% from September to October.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity came in 8.3% above levels in October 2012.
  • The number of newly listed homes declined by 0.8% from September to October.
  • The Canadian housing market remains in balanced territory.
  • The national average sale price rose 8.5% on a year-over-year basis in October.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) rose 3.5% year-over-year in October.
The number of home sales processed through the MLS® Systems of Canadian real estate Boards and Associations and other co-operative listing systems fell 3.2 per cent on a month-over-month basis in October 2013. The decline returned activity back to near where it stood last June and July.

“October’s lower activity provides early evidence confirming that sales in the later summer and early fall were boosted by homebuyers with pre-approved mortgages at lower than current interest rates jumping into the market before their preapprovals expired,” said Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist.


This Month's Trivia Question:
Visit and tell us what was tweeted on November 6th? 

The first five individuals to respond correctly will win a $10.00 gift card to Starbucks. Email your answers to

Last Month's Trivia Question:
Visit my website and email me TIP #5 on the 10 steps to buying or selling your home?

The Answer was: Talking money

You’ve made your decision and you’re ready to take the plunge. The paperwork is in front of you. Now, you begin to panic and second-guess everything. Relax, this is normal for first-time buyers and sellers. The experience is exciting and nerve-racking all rolled into one. Luckily for you, negotiating the best deal for my clients is where I excel.   Once an offer is made, three things can happen: the offer can be accepted; rejected; or countered. You can generally expect a few rounds of back-and-forth negotiations before a deal is done.  

Congratulations to: Joe N., Melanie D., Jamie G., Krystyna T., Rebecca R. were the first five to correctly answer last month and win a $10.00 gift card to Starbucks.

Feature Listings
35 Stradwick Avenue

Welcome to 35 Stradwick Avenue, the is the first time this unique and charming home with amazing pride of ownership throughout has ever been placed on the market.

32 - 3691 Albion Road

Charming 3 Bedroom 2 Bat end unit condo in truly move in condition.  Freshly painted, brand new berber carpets, hardwood in the bedrooms, very spacious bedrooms with a walk in closet in the master bedroom...

8-510 Stonefield Private

Bright and spacious LEED certified condo, approx. 1095sqft, 2 bedroom, 2 bath and den. Built 2010, Brio II model sunny southeast facing top floor end unit.


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This month enjoy a FREE gift certificate for 25.00 per person on any 7 day or more all inclusive vacation package, cruise or escorted tour.  No strings attached.

Rachel Hammer, Broker

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