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Definition of Walk Through

Walk Through Image 1

Walk Through

A final inspection of a home before "closing" to look for and document problems that need to be corrected.



Related Terms:

Widow's Walk

A platform with a rail around it, built onto the roof of a house. The platform is accessible by stairs or a ladder from the interior of the house. See Plan #10433 for an example.


Creditor Proof Protection

The creditor proof status of such things as life insurance, non-registered life insurance investments, life insurance RRSPs and life insurance RRIFs make these attractive products for high net worth individuals, professionals and business owners who may have creditor concerns. Under most circumstances the creditor proof rules of the different provincial insurance acts take priority over the federal bankruptcy rules.
The provincial insurance acts protect life insurance products which have a family class beneficiary. Family class beneficiaries include the spouse, parent, child or grandchild of the life insured, except in Quebec, where creditor protection rules apply to spouse, ascendants and descendants of the insured. Investments sold by other financial institutions do not offer the same security should the holder go bankrupt. There are also circumstances under which the creditor proof protections do not hold for life insurance products. Federal bankruptcy law disallows the protection for any transfers made within one year of bankruptcy. In addition, should it be found that a person shifted money to an insurance company fund in bad faith for the specific purpose of avoiding creditors, these funds will not be creditor proof.


Inspection Report

This is a telephone interview of the person applying for life insurance conducted by someone from the underwriting department of the insurance company. Some insurance companies only sporadically contact applicants and some contact every applicant. On average the interview lasts between 15 to 30 minutes. The questions asked relate to personal habits (like smoking and alcohol consumption) and finances, including income and net worth, confirmation of employment, duties and the nature of the applicant's business. In addition, there are questions about driving, sports, aviation and currently held insurance. All information obtained is strictly confidential and is submitted solely to the underwriter for review.


Insured Retirement Plan

This is a recently coined phrase describing the concept of using Universal Life Insurance to tax shelter earnings which can be used to generate tax-free income in retirement. The concept has been described by some as "the most effective tax-neutralization strategy that exists in Canada today."
In addition to life insurance, a Universal Life Policy includes a tax-sheltered cash value fund that cannot exceed the policy's face value. Deposits made into the policy are partially used to fund the life insurance and partially grow tax sheltered inside the policy. It should be pointed out that in order for this to work, you must make deposits into this kind of policy well in excess of the cost of the underlying insurance. Investment of the cash value inside the policy are commonly mutual fund type investments. Upon retirement, the policy owner can draw on the accumulated capital in his/her policy by using the policy as collateral for a series of demand loans at the bank. The loans are structured so the sum of money borrowed plus interest never exceeds 75% of the accumulated investment account. The loans are only repaid with the tax free death benefit at the death of the policy holder. Any remaining funds are paid out tax free to named beneficiaries.
Recognizing the value to policy holders of this use of Universal Life Insurance, insurance companies are reworking features of their products to allow the policy holder to ask to have the relationship of insurance to investment growth tracked so that investment growth inside the policy may be maximized. The only potential downside of this strategy is the possibility of the government changing the tax rules to prohibit using a life insurance product in this manner.


Registered Pension Plan

Commonly referred to as an RPP this is a tax sheltered employee group Plan approved by Federal and Provincial governments allowing employees to have deductions made directly from their wages by their employer with a resulting reduction of income taxes at source. These Plans are easy to implement but difficult to dissolve should the group have a change of heart. Employer contributions are usually a percentage of the employee's salary, typically from 3% to 5%, with a maximum of the lessor of 20% or $3,500 per annum. The employee has the same right of contribution. Vesting is generally set at 2 years, which means that the employee has right of ownership of both his/her and his/her employers contributions to the Plan after 2 years. It also means that all contributions are locked in after 2 years and cannot be cashed in for use by the employee in a low income year. Should the employee change jobs, these funds can only be transferred to the RPP of a new employer or the funds can be transferred to an individual RRSP (or any number of RRSPs) but in either scenario, the funds are locked in and cannot be accessed until at least age 60. The only choices available to access locked in RPP funds after age 60 are the conversion to a Life Income Fund or a Unisex Annuity.
To further define an RPP, Registered Pension Plans take two forms; Defined Benefit or Defined Contribution (also known as money purchase Plans). The Defined Benefit Plan establishes the amount of money in advance that is to be paid out at retirement based usually on number of years of employee service and various formulae involving percentages of average employee earnings. The Defined Benefit Plan is subject to constant government scrutiny to make certain that sufficient contributions are being made to provide for the predetermined pension payout. On the other hand, the Defined Contribution Plan is considerably easier to manage. The employer simply determines the percentage to be contributed within the prescribed limits. Whatever amount has grown in the employee's reserve by retirement determines how much the pension payout will be by virtue of the amount of LIF or Annuity payout it will purchase.
The most simple group RRSP Plan is a group billed RRSP. This means that each employee has his own RRSP Plan and the employer deducts the contributions directly from the employee's wages and sends them directly to the RRSP Plan administrator. Regular RRSP rules apply in that maximum contribution in the current year is the lessor of 18% or $13,500. Generally, to encourage this kind of Plan, the employer also agrees to make a regular contribution to the employee's Plans, knowing full well that any contributions made immediately belong to the employee. Should the employee change jobs, he/she can take their Plan with them and continue making contributions or cash it in and pay tax in the year in which the money is taken into income.



Registered Retirement Savings Plan (Canada)

Commonly referred to as an RRSP, this is a tax sheltered and tax deferred savings Plan recognized by the Federal and Provincial tax authorities, whereby deposits are fully tax deductable in the year of deposit and fully taxable in the year of receipt. The ability to defer taxes on RRSP earnings allows one to save much faster than is ordinarily possible. The new rules which apply to RRSP's are that the holder of such a Plan must convert it into income by the end of the year in which the holder turns age 69. The choices for conversion are to simply cash it in an pay full tax in the year of receipt, convert it to a RRIF and take a varying stream of income, paying tax on the amount received annually until the income is exhausted, or converting it into an annuity with guaranteed payments for a chosen number of years, again paying tax each year on moneys received.
If you are currently 69 years of age, you may still contribute to your own RRSP until December 31st of this year and realize a tax deduction on this year's income. You must also, however, make provisions before December 31st of the year for converting your RRSP into either a RRIF or an annuity, otherwise, the full balance of your RRSP becomes taxable on January 1 of the following year. If you are older than age 69, still have earned income, and have a younger spouse, you may continue to contribute to a spousal RRSP until that spouse reaches 69 years of age. Contributions would be based on your own contribution level and are deducted from your taxable income.


Spousal Registered Retirement Savings Plan

This is an RRSP owned by the spouse of the person contributing to it. The contributor can direct up to 100% of eligible RRSP deposits into a spousal RRSP each and every year. Contributing to a spouses RRSP reduces the amount one can contribute to one's own RRSP, however, if the spouse is a lower income earner, it is an excellent way in which to split income for lower taxation in retirement years.


Walk Through Image 1

Canada Pension Plan (CPP)

A Plan that provides retirement and long term disability income benefits to residents of Canadian provinces (excluding Quebec).


Estate Planning

An insurance program designed to provide funds for insured's dependents upon death of the insured, and to also conserve, as much as possible, the personal assets that the insured wants to bequeath to heirs.


Quebec Pension Plan

A Plan that primarily provides retirement and long-term disability income benefits for residents of Quebec.


Closing Costs

Various expenses associated with purchasing a home. These costs can include, but are not limited to, legal/notary fees and disbursements, property land transfer taxes, as well as adjustments for prepaid property taxes or condominium common expenses, if any.


Closing Date

The date on which the sale of a property becomes final and the new owner usually takes possession.


Gross Household Income

Gross household income is the total salary, wages, commissions and other assured income, before deductions, by all household members who are co-applicants for the mortgage.


Home Equity

The difference between the price for which a home could be sold (market value) and the total debts registered against it.


Inspection

The examination of the house by a building inspector selected by the purchaser.


Closing

The meeting at which the sale of a property is finalized. The buyer signs the lender agreement for the mortgage and pays closing costs and escrow amounts. The buyer and seller sign documents to transfer ownership of the property. Also known as the settlement.


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Coach home

One of a group of homes in a two-story building, with own garage and entrance.


Courtyard home

A home with a courtyard as its main entrance.



Home warranty

Like any other warranty, this guarantees the property against failure of mechanical systems, such as plumbing, electrical, heating and installed appliances.


Patio home

Small, single-family home with a patio.


Single-family home

A detached house.


Townhouse

One of a row of houses connected with common side walls.


Built-Up Roof

A roofing composed of three to five layers of asphalt felt laminated with coal tar, pitch, or asphalt. The top is finished with crushed slag or gravel. Generally used on flat or low-pitched roofs.


Construction Documents

All drawings, specifications and addenda associated with a specific construction project.


Gable Roof

A roof that consists of two sloping Planes that meet at the ridge or peak. The Planes are supported at their ends by triangular, upward extensions of walls known as gables.


Hip Roof

A pitched roof with sloping sides.


Interior Finish



Walk Through Image 3

aterial used to cover the interior framed areas of walls and ceilings




Plant Shelf

A decorative feature approximately 8 feet above the floor, normally associated with volume ceilings that add high spaces/shelves to use for decorative purposes.


Plot Plan

An overhead view Plan that shows the location of the home on the lot. Includes all easements, property lines, set backs, and legal descriptions of the home. Provided by the surveyor.


Roof Valley

The "V" created where two sloping roofs meet.


Roof Vent

A louver or small dome mounted near the ridge of the roof to allow the passage of air through the attic.


Shed Roof

A roof that pitches up further on one side than the other. Shed roofs are also used over some porches.


Stick-Built Home

A house built without prefabricated parts. Also called conventional building.



 

 

 

 

 

 

Related to : home, mortgage, insurance, homebuyer, real estate, property, buy home, home insurance, financing, home financing, home buyer, first time homebuyer, homes, homebuying, credit, condo.


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