Sunday, December 19, 2010

West Kelowna Real Estate ~ Karen Guy ~ Wow, this is why I love my job!

Merry Christmas Karen! Thank-you so much for the card, calender and chocolates!

I love the calender! I find I really use that style so useful for keeping track of all my daycare stuff. I love my new place and neighbourhood. I'm SO glad I made the move. Everything you did for me helped make things go smoothly so THANK-YOU from the bottom of my heart! Love, Bonna
Karen Guy, REALTOR®
I am the GUY that will make a difference!
Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty
C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Thursday, December 16, 2010

West Kelowna ~ Homeowners Protect Yourself Now ~ CO Detectors

Homeowners can take action against potential carbon monoxide poisoning by taking the following steps:

This is an IMPORTANT REMINDER to take this time to ensure you CO detectors are working.

Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, colorless gas produced by the combustion of fuels such as natural gas, oil, and propane in devices such as furnaces, water heaters, and stoves. These items are normally designed to vent the CO to the outside, but harmful interior levels of CO can result from incomplete combustion of fuel, improper installation, or blockages, leaks or cracks in the venting systems.

• Have all fuel-burning appliances professionally inspected yearly, preferably before the start of the cold-weather season when heaters and furnaces are first used

• These appliances include gas stoves and ovens, furnaces and heaters, water heaters, generators, and clothes dryers

• All such devices should be properly installed and vented to the outside whenever possible

• If repairs are necessary, be sure they are performed by a qualified technician

• Always use the proper fuel specified for the device

• Have flues and chimneys for fuel-burning fireplaces or wood stoves inspected regularly for cracks, leaks, and blockages that may allow a buildup of CO to occur

• Never use gas stoves or ovens to heat the home, even temporarily

• Do not start or idle a vehicle in a garage, even with the outer garage door open.

• For additional protection, purchase a CO detector (either battery operated or plug-in) and follow the manufacturer's instructions for proper location and installation

• Learn what to do should the CO alarm activate: If anyone in the home experiences symptoms such as fatigue, dizziness, blurred vision, nausea, or confusion, everyone should leave immediately and seek medical attention. If no symptoms are felt, open doors and windows immediately and shut off all fuel-burning devices that may be potential sources of CO.

Karen Guy, REALTOR® I am the GUY that will make a difference!

Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Karen Guy, REALTOR® ~ Holiday Viewings are Worth a Look

Holiday Viewings

The holiday season is fast approaching. It’s a time that is traditionally taken up with family gatherings, parties and general celebration, with all the flurry of activities that go with it. Real estate is often the furthest thing from the most people’s minds – but I’d like to tell you that if you’re one of the home buyers and sellers who think that way, you could be missing out!

The holiday season can have definite advantages for both buyers and sellers. If you currently have your home listed for sale, you may find yourself caught up in the time demands of shopping and entertaining. You may be feeling that you don’t need the added stress of keeping your home in “show-ready” condition at a time of year when viewings may tend to slow down. In fact, some home sellers won’t accept viewing appointments during the holiday season. While that’s your choice, you should be aware that a decision like that could result in a missed opportunity. After all, in today’s ethnically diverse society, there are still many prospective buyers who may not be celebrating the holiday season, yet they still have time off to view properties. Also, with some homes not accepting viewing appointments, your listing may have less competition during the holiday period.

Of course, if your home is decorated for the holidays, it probably looks at its most attractive. Holiday viewings have the advantage of showing off your home at its most welcoming, and prospective buyers can envision themselves in its warm and inviting atmosphere. So why not roll out the welcome mat to potential buyers too?

The holiday season offers advantages for buyers as well. Fewer buyers actively looking during the holidays means there’s less competition from other buyers. It’s still an excellent time to go house hunting. As your local Coldwell Banker real estate professional, I can help bring you a home for the holidays!

Karen Guy, REALTOR®

I am the GUY that will make a difference!

Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Karen Guy, REALTOR® ~ Maintaining Your Hot Water Tank


Performing routine checks and maintenance on your hot water tank, whether it is gas, oil or electric, is vital to extending the life and efficiency of the tank and ensuring your safety. The normal life expectancy of a tank is 8 – 12 years. Older tanks have the manufacture date as part of the serial number; however newer tanks have stickers with the date of manufacture clearly stated.

Completely check the tank for any signs of leaks, corrosion, damage and deterioration. Check water lines on top of the unit for leaks and corrosion; also check that the bottom drain valve is not leaking. You should routinely drain the tank and flush out any silt and debris on the bottom of the tank. This will greatly increase the life and efficiency of your tank, especially if you are on a well system.

The area around the tank should be kept clear of debris and combustibles. Air flow is required to help with combustion and the performance of your tank. Visually check the tank’s main components. Check the burner and pilot-light burn pattern and look for signs of corrosion and deterioration and ensure that the flame shields are in place. Air flow to the burner area should not be obstructed.

Next, take a look at the temperature pressure relief valve (TPRV) located on the side of the tank. The TPRV is designed to release any build-up of pressure or temperature. There should be no signs of leakage or corrosion. The TPRV should also be equipped with a down-tube to safely direct any release of hot water and/or steam from hitting you. The TPRV should never be capped. Without the ability to release pressure, your tank will essentially become a ticking bomb.

The vent connector/exhaust pipe on top of the tank should be securely attached with no holes or corrosion. If the vent is not in good condition it could lead to the off gassing of Carbon Monoxide, which can make you ill or at high levels, lead to fatality.

You should consult a professional plumber if any of the above issues exist or if you have any questions or concerns.

Karen Guy, REALTOR® I am the GUY that will make a difference! Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

West Kelowna Realtor Karen Guy ~ Tips on Planning a Home Office

Planning Your Home Office

Technology is quickly changing our everyday lives, and if you’re like me, you want to use it to your best advantage, no matter what the time of day. For some people, that may also mean making a few changes to your home environment. More and more homeowners I talk to are converting their sewing room, games room or den into a home office.

If you’re thinking of creating a home office, a good place to start is making a list of needs that you want your home office environment to fulfill. Make sure that you consider possible future uses as well as just your immediate needs. Prepare a budget and include both the cost of equipment and any installation costs. Don’t forget to consider an extra phone line, and high-speed internet installation or wireless service costs. You should also determine whether any additional power outlets or lighting will be needed to accommodate your room’s new purpose. If you need electrical work done, factor this into your budget.

Your equipment cost is one area where you probably won’t want to skimp. With today’s rapidly-advancing technology, you may find that if you only go with a minimal set-up, your equipment could quickly become inadequate to handle your future needs. If you need to cut back on your budget, you will probably be better served by ‘getting creative’ with furniture or decorating costs. I’ll be giving you some tips about this in my next newsletter.

If you’re considering a home office, remember that when the time comes to sell, prospective buyers generally find a home office a welcome and attractive feature. And if you’re looking for more ideas to make your home more saleable, or you’re wondering what’s in demand for today’s homes, just give me a call. As your local Coldwell Banker sales professional, I can advise you about what’s hot and what’s not in our market, and how various improvements may affect the resale value of your home. Let’s talk.

Karen Guy, REALTOR® I am the GUY that will make a difference! Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Monday, November 8, 2010

West Kelowna Real Estate - Market Update from my E-Connection Newsletter

I had a great chat with another Realtor friend in Langley the other morning.  He is quite busy right now working with clients wanting to take advantage of upgrading to a more expensive home (let’s say you want to buy a home that’s worth $100,000 more than the current home you are in) in the current down market.  If you are thinking of exactly this, there couldn’t be a better time.

A lot of buyers out there are sitting on the fence and waiting to decide if prices will go down even further.  In my opinion they may, but the other unknown factor is interest rates; what are they going to do?  If house prices fall slightly, interest rates could very well increase.  Interest rates certainly can’t come down much more; so, I personally consider this a wash.  Don’t be one of many who wake up regretting not getting into the market when they had a chance.

The only time the bottom of the market is realized is when it’s too late, as prices are already on the way up again.   Gone are the days of buying and flipping.   If you are planning on making a purchase and staying in your home (which more people are these days) it’s irrelevant if values decrease slightly.  Like I said, in my opinion you cannot go wrong making a purchasing now.

Click here to see my full E-Connection Newsletter.   If you would like to receive these every 6 weeks please send me an email and I will add you to my distribution list.

Karen Guy, REALTOR® I am the GUY that will make a difference! Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Friday, October 22, 2010

West Kelowna Real Estate - The Power of Social Media to Market Real Estate

I am attending a very informative seminar on the power of social media. Enjoy!

Karen Guy, REALTOR®I am the GUY that will make a difference!Coldwell Banker Horizon RealtyC 250.878.3605O 250.768.8001

Friday, October 15, 2010

Nice Suprise!

So I'm sitting in my office the other day working on a few things.  In between seeing clients, answering calls and all the other things this is a time when I get to reflect and think about what will happen next in the crazy career called Real Estate, when Lynn comes in and hands me some mail.

I look up from my computer a little frazzled but welcome the break.  Every three months or so we get our "Ultimate Service" Customer Satisfaction Questionnaire's back from clients and I am very proud to share these comments.

"We saw Karen's sign down the street - and went to her open house at another property and was very impressed by her personality and knowledge of our area (Smith Creek).  She went over and above our expectations and our understanding of the duties of a REALTOR.  She is very considerate of her client's needs.  We would highly recommend her without any hesitation!   N & P Bell."

"I was VERY happy with Karen's service.  I know a lot of REALTORS and chose Karen because of the great things I had heard about her service.   B. Irving."

Thank you so much to you both - you know who you are!

Receiving these wonderful thoughts is what makes my career in Real Estate worth every minute of all the hard work and effort it takes to be successful.

until next time...

Karen Guy, REALTOR® I am the GUY that will make a difference! Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

West Kelowna Realtor Karen Guy

Low Mortgage Rates Boost August Home Sales

Vancouver, BC – September 14, 2010. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) residential sales in the province declined 35 per cent to 5,590 units in August compared to the same month last year. On a seasonally adjusted basis, MLS® residential unit sales in the province increased 7 per cent in August from July 2010. The average MLS® residential price climbed 4 per cent to $487,804 in August compared to the same month last year.

"August home sales posted the first month-to-month increase since March of this year,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “Lower mortgage interest rates and an improving labour market are inducing additional consumer demand."

"The number of new residential listings in the province has fallen 30 per cent since April,” added Muir. “With fewer new listings, total active listings are now on the decline, signaling that an end to the buyer’s market may be on the horizon."

Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume increased 8 per cent to $26.9 billion, compared to the same period last year. Residential unit sales rose 2 per cent to 53,717 year-to-date, while the average MLS® residential price climbed 10 per cent to $501,226 over the same period.

Karen Guy, REALTOR® I am the GUY that will make a difference! Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Friday, July 16, 2010

Social Media Revolution ~ this is a must see

Karen Guy, REALTOR® I am the GUY that will make a difference! Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Saturday, June 19, 2010


I just came back on the 5th of June from a wonderful part holiday / part Real Estate work conference.  I took a week long Education cruise to Alaska on Holland America with about 50 other REALTORS®.  What an amazing experience and a truly great group of people I met.  The talent of the speakers aboard the cruise who taught our courses was exceptional ~ kudo's to you, and cheers to everyone aboard who helped make this such a memorable event.  We took a helicopter ride up into the Graciers in Juneau (we drank fresh glacier water), we went on the White Pass Summit Railway in Skagway and took an amphibeous vehicle tour through the streets of Ketichan, and then into the ocean to see the most spectacular site of eages that I have ever seeen.!   Here's a few pictures.


Karen Guy, REALTOR® I am the GUY that will make a difference! Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day ~ this is so true, enjoy!

Are you a mean mum, I know mine was, and now I am AND I love her for it

Mean Moms

it's worth the me :-)

Someday when my children are old enough (two of mine are now and it's so great that they actually comprehend this message) to understand the logic that motivates a parent, I will tell them, as my Mean Mum told me:

I loved you enough . . .

To ask where you were going, with whom, and what time you would be home.

I loved you enough to be silent and let you discover that your new best friend was a creep.

I loved you enough to stand over you for two hours while you cleaned your room, a job that should have taken 15 minutes.

I loved you enough to let you see anger, disappointment, and tears in my eyes. Children must learn that their parents aren't perfect.

I loved you enough to let you assume the responsibility for your actions

Even when the penalties were so harsh they almost broke my heart.

But most of all, I loved you enough . .

to say NO when I knew you would hate me for it. Those were the most difficult battles of all. I'm glad I won them, because in the end you won, too. And someday when your children are old enough to understand the logic that motivates parents, you will tell them.

Was your Mum mean? I know mine was. We had the meanest mother in the whole world! While other kids ate candy for breakfast, we had to have cereal, eggs, and toast. When others had a Pepsi and a Twinkie for lunch, we had to eat sandwiches. And you can guess our mother fixed us a dinner that was different from what other kids had, too. Mother insisted on knowing where we were at all times. You'd think we were convicts in a prison. She had to know who our friends were, and what we were doing with them. She insisted that if we said we would be gone for an hour, we would be gone for an hour or less. We were ashamed to admit it, but she had the nerve to break the Child Labor Laws by making us work. We had to wash the dishes, make the beds, learn to cook, vacuum the floor, do laundry, empty the trash and all sorts of cruel jobs. I think she would lie awake at night thinking of more things for us to do.

She always insisted on us telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. By the time we were teenagers, she could read our minds and had eyes in the back of her head. Then, life was really tough!

Mother wouldn't let our friends just honk the horn when they drove up. They had to come up to the door so she could meet them. While everyone else could date when they were 12 or 13, we had to wait until we were 16.

Because of our mother we missed out on lots of things other kids experienced. None of us have ever been caught shoplifting, vandalizing other's property or ever arrested for any crime. It was all her fault. Now that we have left home, we are all educated, honest adults.. We are doing our best to be mean parents just like Mum was. I think that is what's wrong with the world today. It just doesn't have enough mean mums!

in loving memory of Margaret Ann Guy, today tomorrow and always. :-)  missing you, especially today, but everyday.

Karen Guy, REALTOR®
I am the GUY that will make a difference! Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty
C 250.878.3605 O 250.768.8001

Friday, March 26, 2010

Bowl for Kids Sake - Kelowna - Karen Guy

Join me in helping Big Brothers and Sisters!   Please give a little donation - a little does a lot!
Thank you.  :-)

Karen Guy, REALTOR®
I am the GUY that will make a difference!
Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty
C 250.878.3605
O 250.768.8001

Friday, March 12, 2010

February Home Sales Strong in Kelowna Despite Olympic Fervor

For immediate release

Vancouver, BC – March 11, 2010. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) residential sales in the province climbed 63 per cent to 5,955 units in February compared to the same month last year. On a seasonally adjusted basis, MLS® residential unit sales in the province declined 13 per cent compared to January 2010.

“Home sales continued to moderate in February after the record pace of the fourth quarter.” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “However, February’s performance was better than expected considering many households were preoccupied with Olympic gold."

The BC residential sales dollar volume increased 91 per cent to $2.96 billion in February compared to the same period last year. The average MLS® residential price climbed 17 per cent to $497,807 over the same period.

"Low mortgage interest rates are continuing to underpin consumer demand and fuel first-time homebuyer activity,” added Muir. “Improving economic conditions are expected to bolster consumer confidence over the coming months.”

For the complete news release, including detailed statistics, follow this link:

Karen Guy, REALTOR®
I am the GUY that will make a difference!
Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty
C 250.878.3605
O 250.768.8001

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Taxation Update - How will it affect Kelowna home owners!!

On March 4, 2010, Finance Minister James Flaherty presented the 2010 Federal Budget which contains several measures of interest to Investors Group and its clients. This summary contains highlights of these proposals, which are not yet law. Clients should contact their Investors Group Consultant for information on how these proposals may affect their financial plans.

Parental Government Benefits – Shared Custody

Currently, when parents share custody of a child, only one individual can receive the Canada Child Tax Benefit (CCTB) and Universal Child Care Benefit (UCCB) amounts in a particular month and the child component of the GST/HST credit in respect of a particular quarter. The Budget proposes to allow two eligible individuals to receive CCTB and UCCB amounts and to receive GST/HST credit amounts when a child lives more or less equally with two individuals who live separately. These individuals will each receive 50% of the annual entitlements effective for benefits payable starting in July, 2011.

Universal Child Care Benefit for Single Parents

The Universal Child Care Benefit (UCCB) is $100 per month for every child under the age of 6 years. For parents in a married or common-law relationship, this payment is taxable to the spouse with the lower income. Single parents are required to include the amount in their income and effectively be taxed at their marginal tax rate. The Budget proposes to allow a single parent receiving the benefit the option to include all amounts received under the UCCB in either the parent’s income or in the income of the child for whom an Eligible Dependant Credit is claimed. If included in the income of the child, this will reduce the Eligible Dependant Credit the parent can claim. If the single parent is unable to claim an Eligible Dependant Credit, he or she will have the option of including the aggregate UCCB amount in the income of one of the children for whom the UCCB was paid.

Measures Affecting Stock Options

Repeal of Stock Option Tax Deferral for Publicly Traded Securities - If an employee acquires a share of his or her employer’s corporation under a stock option agreement, the difference between the fair market value of the share at the time the option is exercised and the amount paid by the employee to acquire the share is taxable as employment income in the year the option is exercised. If certain conditions are met, the employee is also entitled to a stock option deduction equal to one-half of the employment benefit, which results in the taxation of stock options at capital gain like tax rates. Since the year 2000, employees exercising stock options of publicly traded companies could elect, within limits, to defer the taxation of employee stock option benefits until the year in which the shares were sold. This election was available on up to $100,000 of options vesting in a particular year (based on the option strike price). The purpose of this measure was to reduce the incidence of employees being forced to sell shares of their employer in order to pay the income tax triggered by the exercise of the option. The Budget proposes that this tax deferral election be repealed with respect to options exercised after 4:00 PM Eastern Standard Time on March 4, 2010.

Relief for Tax Deferral Elections – Some taxpayers who took advantage of the tax deferral election on stock options (introduced in the 2000 Federal Budget) have experienced declines in the value of their optioned shares to the point that the value of their shares is less than the tax liability that would be owing should they decide to sell the optioned shares. To provide relief, the Budget proposes an elective tax treatment that would limit the tax liability on the employee stock option benefit to the proceeds realized from the disposition of the shares. Individuals who disposed of optioned shares prior to 2010 will have to make an election for this special tax treatment on or before the filing due date for 2010 (generally April 30, 2011). Individuals who have not disposed of their optioned shares must do so before 2015 in order to be eligible for this elective tax treatment.

Stock Option Cash Outs – As outlined above, the 50% stock option deduction results in the taxation of employee stock option benefits at capital gain like tax rates. Unlike other remuneration paid to employees, the corporate employer does not get a deduction for the stock option benefit if the employee exercises the option to acquire shares. However some stock option plans have been structured to provide the employee with the option of receiving cash instead of shares at the time of exercise. In situations where the employee elects to receive cash, under the existing law, it is possible for the employer to deduct the payment made to the employee and for the employee to also claim the 50% stock option benefit deduction. For options exercised after 4 p.m. EST Time on March 4, 2010, the Budget proposes measures to prevent both the 50% stock option deduction and a deduction by the employer from being claimed for the same stock option employment benefit.

US Social Security Benefits

The Budget proposes that Canadian residents who started receiving U.S. Social Security benefits prior to 1996, and who have continuously received those benefits since that time, must only include 50% of those benefits received on or after January 1, 2010 as taxable income. These rules may also apply to survivors.

Canadian residents who started to receive benefits on or after January 1, 1996 must continue to report 85% of the benefits received as taxable income as per the Canada-US Tax Convention.

Scholarship exemption

Currently, post-secondary scholarships, fellowships, and bursaries are fully exempt from tax. The Budget proposes to make post-doctoral fellowships taxable. The Budget also proposes that if the educational program is part-time and the student is not disabled, then the exemption will be limited to the amount of tuition paid for the program plus the costs of program-related materials. These measures will apply to the 2010 and subsequent taxation years.

Medical Expense Tax Credit

The medical expense tax credit provides a non-refundable tax credit for eligible medical expenses that exceed the lesser of the annual threshold ($2,024 for 2010) and 3% of net income. The credit is calculated by multiplying the lowest personal tax rate (currently 15%) by the amount that exceeds the lesser threshold.

The Budget proposes that expenses incurred for purely cosmetic procedures (including related services and other expenses such as travel) would not be considered eligible medical expenses for the purposes of this credit. Purely cosmetic procedures would generally include surgical and non-surgical procedures purely aimed at enhancing the individual’s appearance. A cosmetic procedure that is required for medical or reconstructive purposes will continue to qualify for the medical expense tax credit. This measure will apply to expenses incurred after March 4, 2010.

Registered Disability Savings Plan changes

A Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP) allows families and friends to save for the long-term financial security of a person with a severe disability. Where an RDSP has been established for an eligible beneficiary and their family meets certain income tests, the government may contribute Canada Disability Savings Bonds (CDSBs) of up to $1,000 annually ($20,000 lifetime). Where eligible contributions are made, the government may also contribute Canada Disability Saving Grants (CDSGs) of up to $3,500 annually ($70,000 lifetime) to the plan.

CDSG and CDSB room will now carry forward - Currently, if a contribution is not made or an RDSP is not established during a year of eligibility, the CDSG and CDSB “room” for that year is lost. The Budget proposes to allow CDSG room and CDSB room to carry forward for up to 10 years. The amount of the CDSG and CDSB that will be awarded in any given year will be based on the family income during each of the prior 10 years (but not before 2008, the year RDSPs became available). There is no limit on the CDSB amount that can carry forward, but CDSG will only be paid on unused entitlements up to an annual maximum of $10,500. The carry forward will be available starting in 2011.

Rollovers from RRSPs/RRIFs to RDSPs - Currently, upon an individual’s death, if their RRSP/RRIF proceeds are payable to the individual’s financially dependent infirm child or grandchild, they can be transferred to that child or grandchild’s own RRSP/RRIF on a tax-deferred basis. The Budget proposes to extend these rollover provisions to include transfers to the child or grandchild’s RDSP. The amount transferred to the RDSP would count against the RSDP beneficiary’s lifetime $200,000 contribution limit, but these “rollover contributions” would not be eligible to receive the CDSG and would be taxable when withdrawn. These measures will be effective for deaths occurring on or after March 4, 2010. Special transitional rules will apply for deaths that occurred after 2007 (when RDSPs became available) and before 2011, effectively allowing the proposed measure to apply as of January 1, 2008. To allow time for financial institutions and the government to adjust their RDSP systems, RDSP contributions benefiting from the proposed RRSP/RRIF rollover measures cannot be made before July, 2011.

Requirement to Report Aggressive Tax Planning Transactions

The Budget introduces proposals requiring taxpayers to report aggressive tax planning transactions. Under the proposals, a reportable transaction is defined as a tax avoidance transaction that bears at least two of the following three hallmarks:

1. The promoter or tax advisor is entitled to fees that are contingent on the tax results achieved or the number of participants;

2. The promoter or tax advisor requires “confidentiality protection” in respect of the transaction; and

3. The taxpayer or the person who entered into the transaction for the benefit of the taxpayer obtains “contractual protection” in respect of the transaction.

Discovery of a reportable transaction that has not been reported could result in the denial of the tax benefit resulting from the transaction. If the taxpayer elects to claim the tax benefit, a penalty for not reporting the transaction would apply. Subject to modifications from public consultations, these proposals would apply to avoidance transactions entered into or completed after 2010.

Investors Group Financial Services Inc.

This report specifically written and published by Investors Group is presented as a general source of information only, and is not intended as a solicitation to buy or sell specific investments, nor is it intended to provide legal or tax advice. Clients should discuss their situation with their Consultant for advice based on their specific circumstances.

Karen Guy, REALTOR®
I am the GUY that will make a difference!
Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty
C 250.878.3605
O 250.768.8001

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Flaherty moves to toughen mortgage rules for West Kelowna home owners

By CBC News

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced new rules Tuesday aimed at preventing homebuyers from getting into financial difficulty when mortgage rates rise. After consulting with major Canadian lenders, Flaherty outlined the latest weapons at Ottawa's disposal aimed at removing some of the speculative froth in the housing market. "There is no...

Click here to view this content.

Karen Guy, REALTOR®
Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty

C 250.878.3605
O 250.768.8001

Sunday, February 14, 2010

I got this from a friend today, and it took me a few seconds to see the seal - too funny, thought I would share!

there's always someone being a wise-guy in a photo  :-)

Karen Guy, REALTOR®
Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty

C 250.878.3605
O 250.768.8001
Valentine's Dessert

Chocolate-Berry Cheesecake

Prep Time: 18 min

Total Time: 3 hours 50 min

Makes: 15 servings

1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® chocolate fudge cake mix
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
1 container (6 oz) Yoplait® Original 99% Fat Free red raspberry yogurt
1 container Betty Crocker® Rich & Creamy chocolate frosting
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups sliced strawberries
1/2 cup blueberries
1 can (21 ounces) strawberry pie filling


1. Heat oven to 325°F. Grease or spray bottom only of 13x9-inch pan.

2. In large bowl, beat cake mix and butter with electric mixer on low speed until crumbly; reserve 1 cup. Press remaining crumbly mixture, using floured fingers, in bottom of pan.

3. In same bowl, beat cream cheese, yogurt and frosting on medium speed until smooth. Beat in eggs until blended. Pour into pan. Sprinkle with reserved crumbly mixture.

4. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until center is set. Cool 30 minutes. Refrigerate at least 2 hours until chilled. Just before serving, stir strawberries and blueberries into pie filling. Top each serving with berry mixture. Store covered in refrigerator.

High Altitude (3500-6500 ft): Heat oven to 350°F.  At end of step 2, prebake crust about 10 minutes.

yum! ~ and easy too :-)

Karen Guy, REALTOR®
Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty

C 250.878.3605
O 250.768.8001

Monday, February 8, 2010

What the HST means for Home Buyers in Kelowna and West Kelowna

Here is an informative article from the British Columbia Real Estate Association,
Karen Guy

The British Columbia Real Estate Association and its members are concerned that home buyers and sellers, particularly buyers of new homes, will bear most of the burden associated with the proposed Harmonized Sales Tax (HST).

The cost of real estate transactions will increase on July 1, 2010 with the introduction of the new HST. The people of BC will be particularly affected since our province has some of the highest priced real estate in the country. Approximately 40% of all real estate transactions in BC involve sales priced over $400,000, the original threshold for an HST rebate.

On November 18, 2009 the provincial government announced the HST transitional rules on housing which includes a threshold increase from $400,000 to $525,000, moving the threshold to above the median new home price in the province. According to the government news release announcing the transitional rules, the limit was increased due to feedback from consumers and the industry. To read the news release and backgrounder click here.

For more information and to see the Residential Housing New Housing Rebates and Transitional Rules for BC click here.

The effect of the HST will also be to introduce a new tax on most services provided by GST/HST registrants in BC. As such, service-providers like REALTORS®, home inspectors, and appraisers will be required by government to collect and remit 12% HST on their fees.

The bottom line is that the proposed HST will increase the cost of buying and selling all property and it will have a much greater impact on the purchase of newly-built homes. Almost 60 per cent of the average family's household income is required to cover home ownership costs. If the HST is implemented as planned, they'll be paying even more.

Karen Guy
West Kelowna Real Estate Agent

Monday, January 25, 2010

Purchasing a home in West Kelowna


You have decided to purchase a home in Kelowna.

You'll be joining the ranks of hundreds of families who realize that home ownership offers a number of benefits including building equity, saving for the future, and creating an environment for your family. 

When you own your own home, your hard-earned dollars contribute to your mortgage. The equity you earn is yours.  Over time, your home will increase in value.

In the following reports, you'll find the information you need to make a wise buying decision.  We'll take you through the planning process step-by-step; to help you determine which home is right for you.
You'll find a host of informative articles on mortgages, viewing homes, the offer, closing details and moving.

I specialize in selling homes in the in the Okanagan Valley including Westbank, West Kelowna, Peachland with a focus on Rose Valley, Lakeview Heights, West Kelowna Estates and Shannon Lake.

Please contact me if you have any questions about buying or selling a home. My priority is to provide you with the ultimate service that will continue to make me your real estate agent of choice not just for today but tomorrow and always.

I am the GUY that will make a difference!

Karen Guy
West Kelowna Real Estate Agent
(250) 878-3605

Are you currently looking for a REALTOR® for the first time in Kelowna?

Are you currently looking for a REALTOR® for the first time?

Are you in the process of choosing a new one?

I would be honoured to be considered.

I am happy to provide further information so you can make an informed and educated decision in choosing the right Realtor® that will not only meet your expectations but exceed them.

Located in Kelowna, Coldwell Banker® Horizon Realty is a firm that I chose to work with so I may offer my real estate clients greater value. I was looking for that extra something special and I found that edge with Coldwell Banker’s “Ultimate Service Program®” and their award winning track record.

I am a graduate of the Canadian Securities course which enhances my ability to assist you in making solid buying or selling decisions about the place you call home.

My priority is to provide you with the level of service that will continue to make me your REALTOR® of choice not just for today, but tomorrow and always.

My Business Philosophy

My philosophy is to provide the best possible service and do it with honesty and integrity.

I believe that when you say you are going to do something; follow through and do it....if you are unable to do so in a reasonable timeframe – communicate.

I believe that when asked a question and you don’t have the answer – don’t fake it by telling people what you think they want to hear.

I endeavor to find the answer and get back to our clients promptly.

If this philosophy is one that sparks your interest, please review the testimonial section of my web-site and let my clients tell you more about me.

I specialize in selling homes in the in the Okanagan Valley including Westbank, West Kelowna, Peachland with a focus on Rose Valley, Lakeview Heights, West Kelowna Estates and Shannon Lake.

Please contact me if you have any questions about buying or selling a home. My priority is to provide you with the ultimate service that will continue to make me your real estate agent of choice not just for today but tomorrow and always!!!

Karen Guy

West Kelowna Real Estate Agent
(250) 878-3605

Monday, January 11, 2010

A Message from your Real Estate Professional:

During this time of the year I always like to think back and reflect on life a little more than usual. I’ve had this book at home for quite some time and I recently came across it – it’s called The Simple Living Guide by Janet Luhrs. One of the very first chapters lists 28 secrets to happiness. I won’t list them all, but here are a few and definitely gives us plenty to think about.

• Live beneath your means and within your seams
• Donate blood
• Don’t make excuses
• Stop blaming other people
• Give all the clothes you haven’t worn in the last three years to charity
• Listen more, talk less
• Every day do something nice and try not to get caught
• Be on time
• Don’t argue
• Get organized
• Let someone cut ahead of you in line
• Be humble
• Re-read a favourite book
• Know when to say something; know when to keep your mouth shut
• Be kind to kind people
• Be even kinder to unkind people

As you socialize with more people than at any other time of year, think of me when the topic of real estate comes up. The market changes daily from one community to another. My report will keep you abreast of the overall market trends and your community activity. For specific questions unique to you, call me. I'm available to answer your questions and to help in any way that I can. Have a safe and wonderful holiday season.

PS – Feel free to forward this email to anyone you know who might be investigating the market. I’ll be happy to provide detailed information catered to specific needs or questions. Also, if you know of anyone that would like to have a business featured in my e-newsletter, please contact me.

Selling Your Home in West Kelowna

Well, you’ve finally made the decision to sell!!!

But now where do you turn or who do you call?

Choosing the right REALTOR®, is the first important decision to make.

Take the time to interview and ask questions. Choosing the wrong REALTOR® can lead you down a path of frustration and worries. Who has time for that?

Let’s face it your home is probably your most valuable asset.

You need a REALTOR®, who is invested in the process of looking after your best interests, you need someone you can depend on and trust to give you consistent and accurate information.

That person is me, Karen Guy.

I work very hard to make sure the selling experience for you is a positive and stress free one.

In today’s real estate market simply signing a listing contract and putting a sign up on the front lawn just isn’t enough to achieve results and satisfy today’s savvy home seller.

There are more listings on the market now than there have been in the recent past. Both networking and the ability to be technologically advanced play key roles in the successful sale of properties. I aim to keep my clients ‘in the loop’ with informative and consistent communication.

I have an effective and recognizable marketing program that will help you get the results you are looking for. Keep in mind that at this time of year a lot of people will contemplate selling their home now that the Christmas season is behind us. This means there will be more competition out there. I will help you price your home according to today’s market.

If you are interested in selling your home and decide to interview a REALTOR®, I would be honored to be considered.

Please contact me if you have any questions about selling your home in the Okanagan Valley including Westbank, West Kelowna or Kelowna British Columbia, Peachland, Summerland.

My priority is to provide you with the ultimate service that will continue to make me your real estate agent of choice not just for today but tomorrow and always.
I am the GUY that will make a difference!

Kelowna Real Estate Agent West Kelowna Karen Guy Realtor