When you’re shopping for a new home, you want to find a property that has all the features and characteristics you want. A large deck surrounded by picturesque landscaping ... a beautiful kitchen with gleaming marble countertops... a cozy finished basement with fireplace....
You should look for the ideal home. You deserve it! But some home buyers make the mistake of becoming fixated on finding the "perfect" property, and passing too quickly on those homes that don't quite measure up.
Why is that a mistake? Because some of those less-than-perfect properties have the potential of becoming your next dream home.
First of all, a home that is lacking some desirable features, such as a finished basement, will probably cost less. Those savings may be more than enough to cover any needed upgrade or renovation.
Secondly, if you look at a home in terms of its potential, rather than the features it happens to have now, there will be more properties available on the market for you to consider.
If you're determined to have a large wrap-around deck for entertaining, for example, don't cross homes that don't have this feature off your list. At least not yet. Instead, view these properties with an eye on potential. Is the backyard big enough to accommodate a large deck? How would a deck like that look if added to this particular property? How much would such a renovation cost?
There's no doubt about it. You want to find a home that has all the features and characteristics you want. If you work with a good REALTOR®, there is a good chance you'll find a property that has most of them.
But keep an open mind. Sometimes a "diamond in the rough" can – with an
upgrade or renovation – become a home you'll treasure for years.
January home sales remain below historical averages in Great Vancouver. "The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver reports that residential property sales in Great Vancouver reached 1,351 on the MLS in January 2013. This represents a 14.3 per cent decrease compared to the 1,577 sales recorded in January 2012....."
Home prices are down about 6 per cent from the peak reached in May 2012.
Why is it so important to know how much you can afford to spend on a home?
First, you don't want to buy a property and then find out, only after you’ve moved in, that you can't financially maintain it. That would mean having to resell it under stressful conditions.
Second, you don't want to settle for a property that's less than ideal, when you really could have afforded the "dream home" you've always wanted.
So how do you figure out how much you can afford to pay for your next home? The first step is to talk to a good REALTOR®. He or she will help you gain a clearer understanding of how much your current home will likely sell for in today's market. That amount, together with other financial resources you might have (such as savings), will determine your down payment. The next thing you’ll need to figure out is your mortgage. Your REALTOR® can help you find a lender who will take a variety of factors into account – income, credit rating, debts, expected down payment, etc. – to calculate the maximum amount of mortgage for which you qualify.
Say, through the proceeds of the sale of your home combined with your savings, your expected down payment is $500,000. If the lender authorizes a mortgage of $450,000, then you can afford a $950,000 home. Of course, that doesn't mean you'll need to spend that much. In fact, a home that meets your needs in terms of property type, features, and neighbourhood, may in fact cost you less. One thing is for sure. A good REALTOR® can work with whatever amount you can afford and show you homes on the market that most closely meet your needs.
Looking for a good REALTOR®? Call today.
The Greater Vancouver housing market experienced below average home sale totals and a modest decline in home prices in 2012. Housing prices experienced their peak in May and have gradually declined through the second half of the year by 5.8 per cent. The 5.8 per cent decline in prices represents the decline in the benchmark price of all residential properties in Greater Vancouver. It should be noted that some sub markets have out performed others this year. For example the Vancouver East detached market has actually risen by 1% over the same 12 month period.
There has been hesitation on the part of both Buyers and Sellers in this market which has reflected in lower than average home sales and a gradual decline in housing prices. I think this trend will continue at least for the next 12 months.
Sales activity and housing prices continue to vary depending on area so it's important to work with your REALTOR® for expert advise.
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The next open house for this property will be held on January 6th from 2-4pm.
Citadel Heights lovely 3 Bdrm townhome in a desirable family complex with schools and parks a short walk away. Recent interior updates include, laminate wood flrs, new blinds, fridge, H/W tank, and lighting. Large master with vaulted ceiling, ensuite bath, & walk in closet. 9ft ceilings, skylights, lots of windows make this unit so bright. Enjoy beautiful views of Mt. Baker from family room & upper level. Large sunken LVR opens to patio & manicured fully fenced yard. Great for BBQ, kids & pets. Finished rec room with roughed in plumbing space for 4th bath. Major capital expenditures for roof replacement, fencing, & exterior paint all recently completed. Attached double garage, storage. Great commuter location!
There is no doubt about it! Even if the weather is relatively pleasant, your home won’t show as well in the winter as it would in the summer, especially from the outside. Fortunately, there are many ways to make your home look more attractive and appealing to buyers during the winter season.
If there has been a snow fall clear your front walkway. Make sure fence doors and gates open freely. Also, clear off the backyard deck or patio area. You want buyers to be able to explore around your property without any obstructions. In short, do everything you can to make the experience of walking up to your front door and around your property as pleasant as possible.
Second, clear away any boots, shoes and other outerwear from the front foyer. You want buyers to focus on your beautiful home, not a cluttered entranceway. Also, have mats on both the outside and inside of your main
entranceway. This will give buyers – as well as you and your family – a chance to wipe their boots and shoes.
Next, adjust your thermostat. You want your home to feel warm, cozy and comfortable for potential buyers.
Finally, remember that in the winter, homes show much better during the day. In the evening, it may be too dark to fully appreciate your property. So work with your REALTOR® to schedule viewings during the day whenever possible. If you can, also have pictures of your property available that showcase what it looks like in the summer. That takes planning. So if you're even just casually thinking of the possibility of selling your home, take some good "summer" pictures. Want more advice on how to sell your home in the winter? Call today.
Pleased to announce the recent sale of my listing at 704-1650 Bayshore Drive.
If you're shopping for a new home, you're probably aware that there will be
some costs over and above the purchase price. It makes sense to budget
for these costs so you're not surprised – and unprepared – when you get
Most of these costs fall into a category that the real estate industry calls
"closing costs." The most common types include land transfer tax, lawyer’s
fees and disbursements, sales taxes, and for newly-built homes, utility hookups.
You should also consider other expenses you will incur, such as home
insurance and moving expenses.
Of course, if your new home is a condominium, you’ll also have to account
for the monthly condo fees.
Closing costs can vary depending on the type and location of your new
home. These are costs I can help you determine.
I will be hosting an open house at 714 5th street New Westminster on Sunday between 2-4pm.
You may think that having to deal with multiple offers on your home is a
wonderful problem. After all, there are so many buyers clamoring to
purchase your property!
The challenge, however, is picking the best offer – and that isn't always the
one with the highest price.
Most offers come with conditions, such as "conditional on securing
appropriate financing" or "conditional on the sale of our current property."
You have to consider both the price and the conditions when choosing
which offer to accept.
There are other considerations, too. What if someone makes a great offer
on your home, but they don't have a pre-approved mortgage and they
haven’t put their current home on the market? That kind of offer is risky
because it is more likely than an unconditional offer to fall through.
So there's a lot to think about when you're in the seemingly enviable
position of dealing with multiple offers. How do you select the right one? The
answer is to have a good REALTOR® by your side to help you make the
Want more tips on finding and buying your next dream home? Call today.
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When shopping for a new home, it's a good idea to try and see the potential
of the property you're viewing. It may not be exactly what you're looking for
"as is", but it may have the potential to become your dream home after
some redecorating or renovating.
The challenge is, judging how much work is required. You don't want to buy
a home with the expectation that it requires a $20,000 renovation, only to
discover that it really needed three times that much!
That’s where a good REALTOR® can help.
He or she can help you get a realistic estimate of the cost of repairs,
upgrades, and renovations, and even recommend some reputable interior
designers or contractors. That way, when you see a home with "potential", you'll be able to make a
more informed decision.
Want more tips on finding and buying your next dream home? Call today.
Happy to announce the sale of my Coal Harbour listing unit 902-1250 West Hastings Street.
Come visit my open house on Sunday July 15th 2pm-4pm. Price just reduced to $1,518,000!! A great price for this superiour location. 1,493 sqft 2 bedroom and den with high end finishes and spectacular views.
Something has just spilled on your favourite rug or carpet. There's a stain
forming. You're worried. Will you be able to remove it? Will the stain set and
Luckily, there's a good chance you can completely lift just about any kind of
stain – if you follow a few guidelines.
The first rule of stain removal is: act fast. The fresher the stain, the easier it
is to lift. So when you notice a stain of any kind, start to work on it right
away. Don't wait.
Begin by trying to dry blot the stain. Avoid the temptation of using a wet
cloth or detergent, at least at this stage of the game. Blot the stain gently
with a clean, dry cloth or absorbent paper towel. Be patient. It may take
several minutes before you see any results.
If dry blotting doesn't completely lift the stain, mix up a combination of one
glass of water with one teaspoon of lemon juice. Again, take a clean cloth or
paper towel, wet it with the water/lemon mixture, and gently blot the area
(test on an inconspicuous area first). Wait five minutes, then try dry blotting
You may have to repeat the above process a few times.
Using a vacuum cleaner directly over the affected area can also help lift
more of the stain.
If, after all your efforts, some of the stain is still there, place a couple of
sheets of paper towel over the stain, with a few books on top to maintain
pressure. Leave those there for 24 hours. Check every hour or so. If you
see stain on the paper towels, you know it's working.
If all else fails, consider calling in a professional cleaner. They know all the
tricks and can often perform a miracle for you!
704-1650 Bayshore has been reduced to $1,518,000! This luxury view condo is 1,493 sqft and in one of the best locations in Coal Harbour. I am hosting an open house this Sunday from 2-4pm.
If you're thinking of making a move within the next few months, there are two important things you need to know.
The first is the market value of your current property. That's the amount your home will likely sell for on today's market. When you know its market value, you'll have a better idea of how much money will be available to invest in a new home.
The second is an overview of what's available on the market. Which of the homes currently available for sale meet your criteria with respect to type of home, special features (such as a big kitchen or pool), neighbourhood, etc? How much are these homes selling for? With those two pieces of information, you'll be able to make a better decision.
An experienced REALTOR® like myself can get that information for you. Call today.
Most people feel confident about the basics of home security. ie. Keep all doors locked. Have a light on in the house while away. Never hide a key outside in an obvious place, like under the mat.
- Yet, almost a million and a half properties get burglarized in N. America each year. So how can you prevent that from happening to your home? Here are a few less known home security basics:
- Actually, never hide a key outside. Thieves know all the hiding places. Instead, make sure all family members have a key
- 2/3 of home burglaries occur during the day. So be extra vigilant about making sure doors and windows are locked while you're away during the day.
- Surprisingly, most thieves are not daring. They are 2.7 times more likely to target a home without an alarm system.
- Thieves will attempt to force entry through sliding-style doors and windows first. So make sure these have a locking bar or extra bolt lock.
- Surprisingly, 40% of household burglaries do not involve forced entry. The thief is able to slip through an unlocked window or door.
- Don't show off possessions! An imported racing bike parked next to the garage, or expensive audio equipment clearly seen through a window, is an invitation to burglars.
- Take a look at the lighting and landscaping around your property. Are there spots where a thief could easily hide? If so, make some changes.
- When planning a trip, have a trusted neighbour pick up newspapaeres, flyers and anything else that may accumulate at your door.
Your local police depatment may have more tips and special programs for keeping your home secure. Give them a call.