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Is Your Property Value Going Down?

9 September 2012

Experts have been predicting all year that property values are going to start declining across the country. And that those in especially hot markets, such as Toronto and Vancouver, can expect to see a 10 to 15 per cent decrease in their property value over the next several years. This of course has many homeowners concerned, as they start to compare their equity against their mortgage and scurry to figure out where they stand.

But rather than getting out your paperwork and crunching numbers, a quick look around your neighbourhood can tell you much more. Here’s what to look for, and the clear signs that your community is on the downswing.

Big box stores are moving to the next city
Big businesses go where the big business is, and that’s where the affluence is. If the value of your neighbourhood is declining, chain stores have the advantage of just being able to pack up and move.

If those businesses are the main attraction in a mall or discount outlet, such as a theatre or major store, it’s an especially bad sign. Other businesses rely on these big businesses to draw in more customers; and if they leave, other businesses will most likely be soon to follow.

People are moving out
This is the one that people are most likely to spot the most quickly. If rent signs start cropping up everywhere, or there are lots of vacant homes, it’s a clear indication that property values are declining. People don’t want to be there any more than the big businesses.

Women, children, and the elderly aren’t around
This is one that most don’t think of right away; but the value of properties within a certain neighbourhood can easily be told by the people within them. If there are no women, children or elderly people around, it’s a sign that people don’t feel safe there. And if that’s the case, people don’t want to live there and property values are on the decline.

There’s a clear lack of public services
If buses take away the route to your neighbourhood, lessen the amount of stops, or lengthen the amount of times in between runs, it’s a sign that the city no longer thinks it’s worth the expense to make the trip. This is a clear sign that the neighbourhood is not as prosperous as it once was.

Taking a look at the parks and other public spaces can also be a good indication as to whether or not values are going down. If these areas are always cluttered with trash or the amenities within them are constantly broken down, it means that no one sees the need to take care of it. After all, why should the city spend money constantly fixing up a playground that’s only used as a drinking ground for teenagers at night?

Do you know of other signs that property values are declining, or have you seen some in your own community? If so then let us know in the comment section below or Like our Facebook page and get in on all the talk about financial news!

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