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W W W . W E G O T H O M E S .C A

THE GUIDE TO YOUR HOME

JUNE 17, 2009

24 Viscount Dr, Red Deer A Diamond Key Home

› Stimulus for

Homeowners

› Xeriscaping? › Home buyers plan › Curb appeal


2 Wed, June 17,2009

RRSP HOME BUYERS' PLAN The RRSP Home Buyers' Plan allows participants to withdraw $20,000 from their RRSPs to purchase or build a first home. A qualifying home falls into the following categories: • It is located in Canada. • It was acquired not more than 30 days before receiving the withdrawal under the RRSP Home Buyers' Plan. • It is intended to be occupied as your principal place of residence within one year after buying or building it. Both existing and newly built homes are eligible. They include detached or semi-detached homes, townhouses, condominiums, mobile homes, or apartments in a duplex, triplex, fourplex, or apartment building. Shares in co-operative housing corporations also qualify. For 2009 and subsequent years, withdrawals made after January 27, 2009, the maximum is $25,000.

Conditions for Participating In the HBP Only the individual who is entitled to receive payments from the RRSP (the annuitant) can withdraw funds from an RRSP. You can make withdrawals from more than one RRSP as long as you are the annuitant (plan owner) of each RRSP. Your RRSP issuer will not withhold tax on these amounts. Generally, you will not be al-

lowed to withdraw funds from a lockedin RRSP.

To participate in the HBP, ONE of the following conditions must apply: •You are withdrawing funds to buy or build a home for yourself as a firsttime homebuyer or • You are withdrawing funds to buy or build a home for a related person with a disability. In addition, ALL of the following conditions must apply: • You must enter into a written agreement (Offer of purchase) to buy or build a qualifying home. The agreement may be with a builder or contractor, or with a realtor or private seller. Obtaining a pre-approved mortgage does not satisfy this condition. • You intend to occupy the qualifying home as your principal place of residence. • Your repayable HBP balance on January 1 of the year of the withdrawal is zero. • Neither you nor your spouse or common-law partner owns the qualifying home more than 30 days before the withdrawal. • You are a resident of Canada. • You buy or build the qualifying home before October 1 of the year after the year of withdrawal.

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• You are responsible for making sure that all HBP conditions that apply to your situation are met. If a condition is not met while you are participating in the plan, your RRSP withdrawal will not be considered eligible. You will have to include the RRSP withdrawal as income on your income tax return for the year you received the funds. If you do not meet the conditions to participate in the HBP in the current year, you may be able to participate at a later date.

Participating in the Home Buyers' Plan After you meet all of the conditions for participating in the HBP: You have to fill out Form T1036, for each RRSP withdrawal you make. Your RRSP issuer will not withhold tax from the funds you withdraw if you meet the HBP conditions. You can withdraw a single amount or make a series of withdrawals throughout the same year and January of the following year, as long as the total of your withdrawals is not more than $25,000. If you buy the home with your spouse or common-law partner, or other individuals, each individual can withdraw up to $25,000 from his or her RRSP, provided each of you meet the HBP conditions. Example On October 15, 2007, Charles withdrew $7,500 from his RRSP under the

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HBP. Before the withdrawal, Charles had entered into a written agreement to buy a qualifying home. In March 2008, he withdrew an additional $1,500 to pay expenses he had not anticipated. Because Charles' second withdrawal was received after January 2008, it is not considered an eligible withdrawal and must be included in his income for 2008. Your RRSP repayments have to be made on or before December 31 of each year. The repayment period begins the second year following the year in which the withdrawal is made. These repayments do not have to be made to the same RRSP from with you withdrew the funds. You do not receive a second tax break when you make an annual payment. Therefore, you must inform your RRSP insurer that it is not a regular contribution and complete an RRSP repayment form, available from any Revenue Canada district office. The CENTRAL ALBERTA REALTORS® ASSOCIATION is an association of REALTORS® committed to providing its members with the structure and services to ensure a high standard of business practices and ethics so that they might serve effectively the real estate needs of the community. CARA’S website www.rdreb.ca features MLS® Listings, Real Estate Brokerages, Real Estate Professionals, and information about the Association.

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4 Wed, June 17,2009

Canadians Benefiting from Stimulus for Homeowners Real Action. Real Results

T

Housing Starts Increase in May OTTAWA, — The seasonally adjusted annual rate1 of housing starts increased to 128,400 units in May from 117,600 units in April, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). “The increase in May is broadly based, encompassing both the singles and multiples segments,” said Bob Dugan, Chief Economist at CMHC’s Market Analysis Centre. Housing starts are expected to improve throughout 2009 and over the next several years to gradually become more closely aligned to demographic demand, which is currently estimated at about 175,000 units per year. The seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts increased 11.1 per cent to 107,800 units in May. Urban multiple starts increased 11.1 per cent to 60,900 units, while urban single starts also moved up by 11.1 per cent to 46,900 units in May. May’s seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts increased 22.0 per cent in Ontario, 16.8 per cent in the Prairies, 7.3 per cent in Atlantic Canada, and 3.3 per cent in Quebec. Urban starts declined 5.0 per cent in British Columbia. Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 20,600 units in May2. As Canada’s national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 60 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally sustainable, and affordable homes — homes that will continue to create vibrant and healthy communities and cities across the country. 1 All starts figures in this release, other than actual starts, are seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) – that is, monthly figures adjusted to remove normal seasonal variation and multiplied by 12 to reflect annual levels. 2 CMHC estimates the level of rural starts for each of the three months of the quarter, at the beginning of each quarter. During the last month of the quarter, CMHC conducts the survey in rural areas and revises the estimate.

he economic stimulus for Canadian homeowners will create jobs and help Canada’s economy stay on track. The Government of Canada has delivered unprecedented action to stimulate the Canadian economy by introducing numerous measures to assist Canadians and their families. In early 2009, Minister Raitt launched national consultations with provincial and territorial governments aimed at improving investments for Canadian families. Since these consultations, the Conservative Government has delivered its Economic Action Plan, which accelerates and expands unprecedented investments in funding for home retrofits and renovations, tax credits for new homebuyers and personal income tax relief for all Canadians. These are some of the measures designed to create jobs and stimulate the economy in the short term, as well as build the legacy of Canadian communities for years to come.

Progress to Date • The average grant paid to homeowners since April 1, 2009, has increased by almost $300 to more than $1,400. • Homeowners who have completed energy-efficiency retrofits have reduced their annual home energy costs by an average of $500. • More than 100,000 homeowners have received over $112 million in grants since the ecoENERGY Retrofit – Homes program began. • The average number of preretrofit evaluations per month has increased by more than 75 percent (from fewer than 12,000 to more than 21,000 for the same period last year). • The Home Renovation Tax Credit, worth up to $1,350, is available to homeowners who undertake to make improvements to their home or property between now and February 1, 2010. • The First-Time Home Buyer’s Tax Credit, worth up to $750, assists first-time homebuyers with the costs associated with the purchase of a home. • The Economic Action Plan also increases the amount Canadians are allowed to withdraw from

their RRSPs under the Home Buyers’ Plan, increasing the limits from $20,000 to $25,000. This $5,000 increase is the first time the limit has been raised since 1992 and means that a couple will be able to withdraw up to $50,000 from their RRSP funds toward the purchase of their first home. In addition to the dramatic increase in pre-retrofit energy evaluations in the first months of the expanded ecoENERGY Retrofit program, a new survey suggests Canadians are also ready to take advantage of other Economic Action Plan measures to buy their first home or renovate their existing home. The survey, conducted by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), found that 1.9 million Canadians in five major centres across the country intend to carry out home renovations this year, compared to 1.6 million in 2008, an increase of more than 15 per cent from last year. It also found that of Canadians in 10 major centres who plan to buy a home this year, almost half are first-time buyers — up substantially from last year, when 36 percent of Canadians who bought homes were first-time buyers. Encouraging more Canadians to buy a first home and to renovate and increase the energy efficiency of their existing homes will help create and secure jobs for thousands of Canadians and generate new economic activity across the country. It is important to note that for the ecoENERGY Retrofit – Homes Program, unlike the Home Renovation Tax Credit, homeowners must first have a home energy evaluation before any renovations are begun to be eligible for the ecoENERGY grant. The evaluation helps homeowners determine the best energy upgrades for their particular situation.

Next Steps Under the Economic Action Plan, the Government of Canada is providing significant measures that will deliver immediate economic stimulus by encouraging Canadians to renovate and buy homes. For example, for every dollar the Government of Canada invests

The survey, conducted by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), found that 1.9 million Canadians in five major centres across the country intend to carry out home renovations this year, compared to 1.6 million in 2008, an increase of more than 15 per cent from last year. It also found that of Canadians in 10 major centres who plan to buy a home this year, almost half are first-time buyers — up substantially from last year, when 36 percent of Canadians who bought homes were first-time buyers in the expanded ecoENERGY Retrofit – Homes initiative, it is expected that Canadian homeowners will invest approximately $10 in products and services to increase the energy efficiency of their homes. Consequently, this Economic Action Plan investment will generate $2.4 billion in economic activity across Canada. To learn more about the ecoENERGY Retrofit – Homes program, the Home Renovation Tax Credit, the First-Time Home Buyers’ Tax Credit and Increasing RRSP Withdrawal Limits under the Home Buyers’ Plan, visit www. actionplan.gc.ca. Additional financial incentives for energy efficiency retrofits may be offered by your province or territory; for these opportunities, visit the Office of Energy Efficiency Web site.


Wed, June 17,2009 5

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Kelowna, BC -- Generation X purchasers are poised to replace aging baby boomers as the major force in recreational property markets across the country, according to a report released today by RE/MAX. The demographic shift was noted in the 2009 RE/MAX Recreational Property Report highlighting sales, pricing, trends and developments in 50 Canadian markets. The report found demand from Gen X (those born between 1965 and 1980) has nearly doubled over one year ago. Seventy-four per cent of markets surveyed this year reported a marked trend toward thirty-something buyers snapping up affordably-priced product, ranging from waterfront cottages to resort condominiums, compared to just 40 per cent in 2008.

“Much of the activity in the marketplace today has to do with the mindset of this particular generation,” says Elton Ash, Regional Executive Vice President, RE/MAX of Western Canada. “More important than the investment aspect is the commitment to lifestyle. The purchase of a waterfront home or a condominium is more than a simple transaction to Gen X purchasers – owning a recreational property underscores their dedication to family and balance.” The financial strength of the cohort dovetails well with current market realities. Sixty-six per cent of recreational property markets surveyed reported a decline in the number of recreational product sold in the first four months of 2009, while 22 per cent indicated sales were either up or on par compared to one year ago. While the combination of

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By RE/MAX


Wed, June 17,2009 7

Continued from page 6 “After being priced out of most markets for the better half of the last decade, Gen X purchasers now have the financial wherewithal to buy recreational product at virtually every price point,” says Michael Polzler, Executive Vice President, Regional Director, RE/MAX Ontario-Atlantic Canada. “Gen X is ideally positioned to pick up any slack in recreational property markets caused by softer demand from baby boomers and retirees. They represent the next wave of recreational property owners in Canada and they know it.” The time to buy has never been better. With four exceptions, recreational property prices have softened in most major markets across the country. Only on the Newfoundland Coast and in Ontario, from Innisfil to Oro, Kingston, and Beaverton, have values increased this year compared to 2008. Starting prices remain similar to one year ago and in some cases are even higher. “While buyer’s market conditions exist virtually across the board, sellers of recreational properties from coast-to-coast are clearly content to wait out the storm,” says Polzler. “They are in no hurry to unload their product. Many have

held on to their properties for generations – they’re fully-owned yet underutilized, which has prompted some aging owners to list them for sale.” The report also found that while lowball offers are on the rise, very few meet with success. Through tough negotiations with multiple sign backs, purchasers who are serious tend to find out the hard way that sellers are serious too. As a result, the sales-to-list ratio remains relatively high in most recreational property markets across the country. “The prospect of greater stability down the road is creating cautious optimism in the marketplace,” says Ash. “Purchasers are seeking to buy quality product, whether it be situated on lakes, rivers, or ponds, before values start to once-again edge up.”

Highlights: • Supply is adequate in most markets, but heated activity in the lower-end has resulted in tight inventory levels for entry-level product in 18 per cent of markets including: Bancroft, Combermere, Honey Harbour/Port Severn, West Kawarthas, Orillia, Flesherton, North Saskatchewan, and Salt Spring Island. • Older cottage owners, many

who own their properties outright, are selling to younger purchasers with families. • Some American cottage owners in Canada are taking advantage of the stronger dollar to cash out of the market. • American purchasers have largely fallen off the radar, with some exceptions: Lake Winnipeg, Shediac Bay, and Sault Ste. Marie. • Pent-up demand is a factor in the marketplace, as those purchasers who had intended on buying recreational properties in the latter half of 2008 deferred their purchases to 2009. • Older Canadians continue to seek secondary homes in warmer parts of the U.S such as Florida, Arizona, California, and Nevada. • Generation X purchasers are prepared to spend their hardearned dollars on recreational properties, but at the end of the day, they want to know that they’ve negotiated the best deal possible. • The upper-end has somewhat softened in markets across the country. RE/MAX is Canada’s leading real estate organization with over 17,600 sales associates situated throughout its more than 677 independently-owned and operated offices across the country.

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10 Wed, June 17,2009

Xeriscaping When discussing his favourite subject, horticulturalist Jeff de Jong always tries to clear up persistent misconceptions about prairie gardens. First, the Olds College instructor says that a drought-tolerant prairie garden requires minimum maintenance and makes few demands on our precious water supply. Then he points out that a dry garden doesn't have to be drab. De Jong's showcases his personal garden in Southern Alberta as the perfect example of how a prairie garden can be a kaleidoscope of brilliant colours. Naturally nourished by rain water collected in four large reservoirs, it is completely pesticidefree. De Jong’s sustainable garden is home to junipers, dogwoods, elders and more than 30 varieties of ruggedly attractive ornamental grasses. "People assume we're talking about landscapes that resemble a desert. We're not," says de Jong, who often encourages garden enthusiasts to visit his back yard. He says that when they do, they always carry a little inspiration away with them. "The shrubs I use have good stem and leaf colour and maintain their visual interest all winter," de Jong adds. "These are 100 per cent hardy, regional materials, perfectly suited to

Jeff De Jong - Olds College Horticultural Instructor explains the principles and methods for designing and maintaining a water efficient xeriscape garden, including a list of plants that are well suited to dry conditions. “ There is an increasing recognition by many gardeners that working with what nature provides in the quantity of rainfall, and with native plants, can reap rewards such as reduced maintenance and flourishing gardens while preserving precious resources like water. A well-designed, drought proof garden generally turns out to be its own reward. After a certain amount

of loving care in the initial stages, sustainable landscaping makes few demands on householders, requiring little upkeep. For further information about xeriscaping, rain gardens, water conservation and other environmentally friendly concepts, Canada Mortgage And Housing Corporation is an outstanding resource. Please visit the website www.cmhc.ca or call the toll-free number of 1-800668-2642 to learn more.

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a dry prairie climate." Many Canadians are becoming increasingly aware of the benefits of creating water saving landscape designs. It's particularly important to de Jong and other proponents of sustainable landscaping, an emerging science that's sometimes known as xeriscaping. Canada’s national housing agency, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), has turned its attention to the concept by developing solid information that helps consumers get started in developing sustainable landscaping. In CMHC’s Landscape Guide for Canadian Homes examples from across Canada show how working with nature can save time, money and protect the environment. In a CMHC study, a comparison of xeriscapes to conventional lawns and gardens found that the xeriscape took 25 per cent less time to maintain, 90 per cent less water, fertilizer and pesticides and cost 60 per cent less to maintain. “There are definite benefits to the gardener and the environment when we work with nature and what it provides in rainfall and native plants,” said Lynn Armstrong, a researcher at CMHC. “The Landscape Guide fully


Wed, June 17,2009 11

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12 Wed, June 17,2009

Hiring a

Contractor It is finally summer, so it is perhaps no wonder that so many people start thinking about renovating their homes at this time of year. If you are among them, now is the time to lay the groundwork for your project - to map out your ideas and get quotes from some qualified contractors. You will have a much better idea of just how much your project will cost and you should be able to avoid the rush. Before you contact anyone, however, it is important to decide exactly what you want to do and what your budgetary limits are. For example, is this going to be a large undertaking or a relatively small renovation? Obviously a large job will generate more expense and disruption. For example, adding a deck will not cause a great deal of upheaval; but renovating your kitchen will. You and your family need to know how much pandemonium to expect . . . and to be able to accept it. Get referrals for reputable contractors from the usual suspects: family, friends, and colleagues. Obviously if they have had a bad experience with a particular company, you may wish to

avoid using that company. In addition, bear in mind that the same person who replaced your aunt's back porch might not be up to adding a second story to your home. Contractors who specialize in small jobs are not always qualified to take on larger projects. The reverse is also true. Once you have compiled a list of contractors, you may wish to contact the Better Business Bureau to determine if consumer complaints have been lodged against any on them. Depending on the outcome of your investigation, you will want to contact at least three contractors to obtain written quotes. Keep in mind that quotations can vary greatly, so give each contractor exactly the same specifications. Choosing the lowest bid does not always guarantee that the job will end up being the least expensive in the end. In addition, picking the highest quote does not necessarily mean you will get the best results. If possible, get a list of recent clients from these contractors and contact them to see if they were satisfied with the work

done. Also factor in your rapport with each contractor. You are going to have to work closely with him or her; it is important that you understand one another. In addition, be sure to look at everything included in the contract; you do not want unexpected surprises down the road. You should also find out if these contractors are licensed by the industry's licensing commission or trade or professional association. Are they insured and bonded? Have they got good credit ratings? In addition, what kind of warranty, if any, is offered with the renovation? A reliable contractor should be able to offer you ideas, improvements, even cost savings. Ideally the contractor should also provide emergency telephone numbers accessible after hours and on weekends. Once you decide on a particular contractor, get written contracts describing all the work to be done. Specify who is responsible for obtaining all the appropriate permits. Remember that it is absolutely essential to ascertain whether you need a permit for the job to be done and to obtain it before any work takes place. Otherwise, you could be subject to fines; you might even have to dismantle your project. Your contract should also outline start and completion dates and a payment

schedule. Take care when agreeing to the terms of a contract and make sure everything is spelled out clearly. The CENTRAL ALBERTA REALTORS® ASSOCIATION is an association of REALTORS® committed to providing its members with the structure and services to ensure a high standard of business practices and ethics so that they might serve effectively the real estate needs of the community. CARA’S website www.rdreb.ca features MLS® Listings, Real Estate Brokerages, Real Estate Professionals, and information about the Association.

First Impressions Are Everything Let Us Help Make a Lasting Impression Home Staging will transform your home so that it can be marketed to the broadest array of buyers so your home will sell faster ... and you can move on with your life.

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Call Gail at 403.304.7027

CENTRAL ALBERTA

REALTORS ® ASSOCIATION 4922-45 Street, Red Deer 403-343-0881

www.homestagingimpressions.com

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Wed, June 17,2009 13

Curb

Appeal

NO

PAYMENTS

NO

INTEREST Financing Available until 2010 o.a.c. (cannot be combined with any other offer}

In addition, what about the gutters and downspouts? Are they free of debris that can cause blockages? A little attention to your home's exterior appearance may be just what it needs to give it the competitive edge. The CENTRAL ALBERTA REALTORS® ASSOCIATION is an association of REALTORS® committed to providing its members with the structure and services to ensure a high standard of business practices and ethics so that they might serve effectively the real estate needs of the community. CARA’S website www.rdreb.ca features MLS® Listings, Real Estate Brokerages, Real Estate Professionals, and information about the Association.

• Featuring home listings • Home renovations • Home buyer/seller services • Video • Home owner/buyer/ renovator news • Rental properties • Mortgage Calculator • Blogs

We’re Your One-Stop Floorcovering Shop • HARDWOOD • LAMINATE • TILE • CARPETS • VINYL

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CONGOLEUM K-TECH LINOLEUM

Looks like hardwood but installs like a stick down tile. Great for cottages or the RV.

4 rolls left. For kitchens, baths, entry, or just about anywhere in your home.

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DURACERAMIC TILE Reg. $7.25 sq.ft.

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Take advantage of the Home Renovation Tax Credit and you’ll be eligible for up to $1,350 Income Tax Credit (for more details visit: http://www.budget.gc.ca/2009). OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK M-F: 8-7, Sat. 9-5, Sun. 12-5 West Side of Gasoline Alley (next to Gary Moe VW) PHONE: 403-343-6511

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With buyers hunting for value in a highly competitive market, curb appeal has become increasingly important. Your house may be beautifully decorated inside or possessed of charm and warmth within, but if its exterior is neglected or unappealing, would-be purchasers may not inquire further. Giving a house curb appeal may be as simple as cleaning up a yard, mowing a lawn, or applying a coat of paint. Here's a short list of some of the things that Vendors can do to increase their property's curb appeal and make it more attractive to potential buyers: • Trim lawns and shrubs. Plant brightly blooming flowers along walkways to make the property more eye-catching. Ensure that the lawn, driveway, and walkway are free of weeds. A little bit of landscaping can go a long way! • Have a look at the house's exterior. Has it been painted recently? (According to a recent study by the National Association of REALTORS in the United States, white homes sell the fastest - at least in the U.S.!) • Make sure there are no holes and cracks in the driveway and walkway and that oil stains in the driveway have been cleaned up. • Check to see that the roof is in decent condition. Does it sag? Any missing shingles to be replaced?

check out Central Alberta's newest home website www.wegothomes.ca


14 Wed, June 17,2009

A construction site is not a playground With most students getting out for summer break in the next few days, now is a great time to remind children and parents that a construction site is not a playground. Climbing on piles of dirt, riding a bike through the yards, playing in trenches, hammering nails and watching the big equipment at work is a big magnet for kids - and some adults. Yet all too often parents and children are not aware of the many hazards inherent in a active construction site: unstable holes and trenches; heights; power tools and large equipment moving in and out of the area that put people at risk

each day. Parents, make sure young children have their own fenced and secure play area and older children are well aware of the dangers and know to stay clear of construction sites. Parents can also set a good example by not “touring” construction sites after hours. Children and adults who witness this walk-through may presume it is okay for them to do the same, thus placing even more people at risk. “Hey, we’ve all been there,” said Scott Boyd, Past Executive Officer of the Central Alberta chapter of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association. “The scari-

est thing I remember as a five-year old kid was pushing a button on an earthmover - and it started! Imagine if it hadn’t stalled out. I was old and independent enough to ride my two-wheeler to the construction site down the road, but not yet instructed on heavy equipment operations.” “Now in this role in the industry I often drive by sites in the evening and see families “touring” through homes under construction oblivious to the risks they’re

taking and assuming,” said Boyd. Also of concern to parents is the industry is taking a tougher stance on trespassing, theft and vandalism. By far, most people don’t realize they’re on private property when they “visit” a home under construction, but they are. And as mentioned, this trespass sends a message to others that it’s okay to do the same thing. Industry is not suggesting that every one

who trespasses is a thief or vandal. We are suggesting that trespass alarms neighbours, which has an impact on their sense of security and safety of their home and family. For example, most homeowners don’t like people touring through their yards and as a result often build fences to feel more secure. In homes under construction that lack of a fence is seen as an “open door invitation” to the site. Industry is trying to influence that perception. We’re making a concerted appeal to neighbours of homes and communities under construction to anonymously supply the police with information about crime or potential crime through Crime Stoppers: the 1-800-222-TIPS people. Victims or witnesses are often neighbours, but for whatever reasons feel helpless, or feel calling the police will be a waste of time and effort.

This lack of reporting helps enable the vicious cycle of repeated theft and vandalism and an ever increasing list of victims and escalation of the types of theft and vandalism - whereby you and your family are increasingly at risk of being a victim. While the emotional toll for victims and neighbours is difficult to measure, the loss in personal property is not. For the insurance and residential construction industries, they estimate that construction site theft and vandalism is a $20 million problem in Red Deer and area. The combination of safety risk and neighbours mistakenly calling Crime Stoppers about an seemingly innocent trespass hopefully will be enough to encourage parents, and through their instruction of their children, not to view construction sites as playground

Spray Jones is the only certified foam master in Red Deer & area. Use for your basement, renovation or new home. Toll Free 1-866-670-3620 • Office 403-782-3620

www.sprayjones.com 23734F17

• Red Deer & Central Alberta


Wed, June 17,2009 15

MAKE YOUR HOME A

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Driveways

Interlock pavers designed for infiltration One popular choice for driveway surfacing is interlock pavers. They come in a vast array of colours, sizes, shapes and textures and can be installed in an infinite number of patterns. Several companies offer pavers that have engineered gaps between

the pavers that are larger than standard interlock applications and are designed to maximize stormwater infiltration.

Porous asphalt While asphalt that is typically applied is impervious, you can consider a more permeable option. Porous asphalt uses larger sized stone particles than regular asphalt and lets water drain through the voids, helping to reduce runoff and increase infiltration. The same concept is also applied to porous concrete.

Loose aggregate Loose materials include river washed pebbles, pea gravel, stone chips, crushed stone, brick or concrete. These loose surfaces are relatively inexpensive, they are the most flexible for curving or irregular layouts and they allow water to seep slowly into the ground. However, some municipalities don’t allow loose aggregate to be used for driveway surfacing so be sure to check it out first.

Effortless Entertainment Make your home the hangout for family and friends. Home Theatre and MultiRoom Music systems make your house the most entertaining place around.

Comfort & Convenience

• Use your System Remote to start a movie, dim the lights, and adjust the temperature for a true movie theater experience in your own home. • Access your music and videos from any room in your home, anytime. • Make your home theatre system easy enough for a child to use with one simple remote to control all your AV gear.

Endless possibilities The design possibilities and material options for driveways are numerous. Your choice will depend on your needs, personal taste, property conditions, and budget. Before you begin, be sure to take the time to research and plan the project out carefully. To help you develop your plan and learn more about landscaping your home, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation has a book available called, Landscape Guide for Canadian Homes. To order a copy visit us online at www. cmhc.ca or call our toll free number 1-800-668-2642.

Make your home comfortable by conveniently adjusting your lights and temperature from anywhere in your home, and anywhere in the world. Never wake up to a dark, cold bedroom again. Wake up to the perfect temperature with your lights gradually turning on while your favorite music plays over your bedroom speakers. You’ll always get up on the right side of the bed. Set you home to goodnight mode with the touch of a button. The system can automatically adjust your temperature to its night time setting, turn of all the lights in your home and arm your security system.

Bring us your plans for a FREE QUOTE #3, 4664 Riverside #3 Ri id Dr., D Red R Deer

(just north of Co-op Home Centre)

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Until recently, driveways were almost exclusively surfaced with asphalt, a low cost, durable material. These days, however, homeowners can choose from a variety of materials, colours, textures and shapes depending on their taste, style of home and budget. Driveways can occupy a large portion of your property so it’s important to carefully consider the type of material you use and its impact on the environment. It will need to be solid, durable and slip resistant and must stand up to repeated and intensive usage. While asphalt meets these requirements, it’s relatively impermeable and prevents rain water and melting snow from slowly soaking into the water table. This contributes to rapid runoff of surface water toward the storm sewer system and natural bodies of water. This runoff can transport pollutants such as road salt, oils and other substances and can affect water quality and aquatic life. The solution is to surface your driveway with a more permeable material such as interlock pavers designed for infiltration, porous asphalt or concrete, or loose aggregate. While all of these options can be environmentally friendly, you’ll need to consider each material’s level of durability, suitability and cost.

403-309-3474


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16 Wed, June 17,2009

wegothomes-June  

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