A blog cannot deal with all aspects of a subject and is not intended to replace professional advice. It's purpose is to highlight information and identify areas of possible interest. Anyone wishing to discuss this blog or to make any comments or suggestions about this blog is invited to do so by either posting comments or emailing me directly.
Great curb appeal not only makes your home the star of the neighbourhood, it can also improve its value and help you sell it for more. Whether you’re thinking of listing your home or just want to make your home the envy of your neighbours, here are several ways to increase your home’s curb appeal.
1. Make your home’s exterior look like new.
For many potential buyers, the condition of the exterior of a home can offer clues to the condition of the interior. The first place to start when boosting curb appeal is the exterior of your house
Paint. Paint is the best way to make your home appear newer. While you can paint your home yourself, if it’s large or more than one story, consider hiring a professional. Painting has a 55 percent return on investment.
Maintain your siding. Over time, weather and the elements can make your home’s siding appear dull and dirty. Use a pressure washer to clean stains, spider webs and accumulated dirt and grime,...
After a long period of disconnect between supply and demand, Calgary's detached housing sector is firmly in balanced territory. Sales were still 10 percent below long-term trends in March, but above levels seen in recent years, while average inventory declined compared to last year, supporting price stability in the detached market.
Source: Used under standard YouTube licence terms.
Backup offers are becoming more common and are ofter successful. In the last downturn of the market, buyers were having a difficult time in qualifying for mortgage loans. While not a huge number of deals fall apart, in difficult times they seem to double in quantity. In a short 3-month period that year, we completed 3 successful deals for our clients by making backup offers on homes that were conditionally sold.
In October of 2016, lending criteria for high-ratio mortgages substantially changed. As a result, consumers who would previously had no problem in qualifying for a mortgage loans are more frequently being turned down by lenders. As a result of this, their conditional purchases are collapsing. In March 2017, the mortgage insurance premium increased – again! The qualification rules will probably only get more difficult.
If you had an accepted offer that was a backup to the first offer and the first offer collapses for any reason,...
Drones, also known as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (or UAVs), have recently entered the mainstream market in Canada and are now widely used both commercially and recreationally. For use in real estate, the activity is considered strictly a commercial use. Commercial drone use is heavily regulated and compliance is required in order to fly.
Operating a drone means that certain rules and guidelines must be followed to ensure the safety of the drone's team, of the public, and of manned aircraft in the area.
All drone flights must take place in daylight and in good weather,
Aircraft must remain in visual line-of-site of the drone pilot at all times,
Drone operations must be conducted outside of airport airspace, away from populated areas, buildings, public areas, and busy roads, and cannot go higher than 90 metres, vertically,
The privacy of others must be respected.
While most of these rules are primarily safety oriented, they may also affect when and how one is able to capture aerial imagery,...
I received another soliciation for a real estate coaching program this morning. The opening line was, "Do Open Houses Work?" Okay so as a very curious REALTOR® that truly believes they can work I thought, let's hear what he had to say.
Take a look at this information in this video:
Source: Used under standard YouTube license terms.
As a disclosure, this is a Toronto-based real estate trainer that sells his coaching program across North America to real estate agents from all brands: local, national and international. Whether or not he is a certified coach or if he has ever been a licensed real estate agent, I don't know. But, his words are mimicked by almost every real estate trainer.
Did you hear what he said? "Of course open houses work: almost any lead generation system works if you're great at it."
Did you hear what he didn't say? "Open houses are not used to actually sell the home where the open house is being held. They're used to generate more potential business...
Would you like a report of your neighbourhood sent directly to your inbox at the beginning of each month? Just let me know the neighbourhood(s) you're interested in seeing the monthly (or quarterly) stats on.
[I originally posted this article in early 2014 and it's been reposted often by others (with and without permission). I have reposted it here with updated content to reflect some of the realities in 2016.]
In an increasingly digital world, it's really important to have at least a very basic understanding of how some of the advances in technology affect you as a consumer. This is true even when it comes to looking at purchasing real estate. While searching for homes online makes the hunt for real estate a heck of a lot easier, you will likely find yourself lost in "information overload" and why hiring a real estate agent to help you before you start a serious search is important. Real estate agents have access to oodles of data and can help interpret it by separating the important details from the myriad of other data. At least they should be able to.
When it comes to searching for real estate online, particularly with things like IDX and MLS Reciprocity, what does it all mean for...
It is a fabulous home that is ready for a new family. Located at 136 Sunset Close in Cochrane, Alberta, the home is a perfect blend of Location + Value + Lifestyle.
Just 30 MINUTES to downtown Calgary & about an hour to the mountains. Cochrane has that small-town charm and it's just close enough to the big city!
A bright, MOVE-IN READY Calbridge-built home of 2,400+ square feet. Quality upgrades like easy maintenance - and pet friendly - ceramic tile throughout most of the main floor, a main floor home office, walk-thru pantry & laundry area, an over-sized patio door and a large granite island are features of this newer home. See FLOOR PLAN in photos. Plush carpeting in the living room & throughout the 2nd floor. SPACIOUS bedrooms & walk-in closet. BONUS ROOM + added FLEX area upstairs. Ensuite bath has soaker tub & separate shower enclosure. Fully-fenced yard backs onto green space & walking path and trees provide lots of privacy. INSULATED, DOUBLE GARAGE. Unspoiled...
I'm hosting an OPEN HOUSE this Saturday from 2 to 4 pm. Come on down and say "hi."
Priced $44,000 below TWO almost identical units that came on the market in the last several days — this home offers tremendous value at $425,900!
Tranquility and style, this exquisite 2 bedroom townhouse is located in the highly sought after Enclave at Castle Keep in Aspen and is surrounded by an abundance of green space. It features a functional, open concept layout, dark hardwood floors throughout main level, 9 foot ceilings, a gourmet kitchen with stainless steel appliances, extended high modern cabinets with a raised eating bar overlooking the dining and living areas with over-sized windows and an unobstructed view of the forested area and ravine. The upper floor boasts two large master bedrooms, each with their own private ensuite and a conveniently located laundry room. The ground floor includes a tandem 2-car garage. The home is a quick commute to downtown Calgary and is close to...
You've probably been driving around Calgary and have seen several RE/MAX® Real Estate Signs.
RE/MAX actually has some of the strictest real estate signage rules among all the various real estate brands (both franchised and independent). The colours, the style, the layout and the content are strictly defined by our corporate offices.
Currently, there are two basic styles. Both indicate which franchisee is being represented in the bottom line of each sign. In Calgary, for example, there are over 10 different RE/MAX offices working the city so you may see a sign from any one of them. The individual real estate agent's name is also required to be on the sign (and the name has to be the one that is registered on their provincial real estate licence. A nick name, if used, must be on the licence too.) Team names are permitted, but they should always include the name of the individual agent that has the listing.
Yesterday, I held an Open House at 334 Ascot Circle SW.
I met so many wonderful people!
A big THANK YOU to everyone that came out in the chilly Calgary weather to see this wonderful home. We had 12 people through during those two hours including one real estate agent and her client. At one point it seemed to be like shark infested waters and a feeding frenzie of home buyers!
We should be getting an offer any day on this wonderful home in a tremendous complex in Aspen Woods.
If you're looking for a home in this area or any other west and northwest community of Calgary, please give me a call. I specialize in all of these neighbourhoods!
I'm hosting an OPEN HOUSE this Sunday from 2 - 4 pm. Come on down and say "hi."
Priced about $35,000 below an almost identical unit that came on the market today, this home offers tremendous value at $433,900!
Tranquility and style, this exquisite 2 bedroom townhouse is located in the highly sought after Enclave at Castle Keep in Aspen and is surrounded by an abundance of green space. It features a functional, open concept layout, dark hardwood floors throughout main level, 9 foot ceilings, a gourmet kitchen with stainless steel appliances, extended high modern cabinets with a raised eating bar overlooking the dining and living areas with over-sized windows and an unobstructed view of the forested area and ravine. The upper floor boasts two large master bedrooms, each with their own private ensuite and a conveniently located laundry room. The ground floor includes a tandem 2-car garage. The home is a quick commute to downtown Calgary and is close to all amenities, the C-Train...
Sales of homes in Hawkwood this past month are following a similar trend of many other established communities in Calgary. While sales are slower than sales in 2014, sales continute to happen and overall sales prices have not substantially lost ground. In fact, on an annualized basis the selling prices in Hawkwood for 2015 are up 3.2% over 2014.
Because home prices throughout many areas of the city are somewhat stalled, it remains a good time to buy homes for both first-time buyers and move-up buyers. However due to the negative influence of the media, many will tend to sit back and wait until prices begin to rise overall in the city instead of just in a few select neighbourhoods and price ranges as the case today.
Looking for a home in our lovely neighbourhood of Hawkwood or looking to sell one?
I'm the trusted neighbourhood real estate professional! I live here, I work here, I'm here for You!
Here are all the listings available in Hawkwood today: click...
Federal Finance Minister Bill Moreau announced in early December the government is increasing the down payment requirements for homebuyers seeking to purchase properties over $500,000. The move is designed to cool down the smoking-hot housing market in some of Canada’s biggest cities (namely, Vancouver and Toronto).
Homebuyers will have to put 10 percent down on the portion of the price over $500,000.
Anything under $500,000 will still only require a five percent down payment.
"This will impact one percent or less of the market,” Morneau told a news conference.
Morneau says the new measure is aimed at expensive homes while still encouraging first-time homebuyers to get into the market.
Those selling their homes in order to size up, especially in cities with hot housing markets, likely won’t feel the pain since they’ve built up equity in those properties.
Price impact: The influence over prices should be small given the narrow reach of the new rules, analysts say....
Today, the federal Finance Minister announced changes to the rules for government-backed mortgage insurance to contain risks in the housing market, reduce taxpayer exposure and support long-term stability.
Effective February 15, 2016, the minimum down payment for new insured mortgages will increase from 5% to 10% for the portion of the house price above $500,000. The 5% minimum down payment for properties up to $500,000 remains unchanged.
For example, a home costing $700,000 would require a $45,000 down payment – a 5% down payment on the first $500,000, added to a 10% down payment on the remaining $200,000.
Buyers shopping for homes below the $500,000 mark will be unaffected by the new rules.
The move is expected to take pressure off the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), which offers mortgage loan insurance for properties valued below $1 million.
Since the 2008 recession, the federal government has made it more challenging for Canadians to...
There has been little talk of the alignment of the Calgary MLS System community names and divisions with those of the City of Calgary. Early in January 2016, the map will be aligned.
What this means for consumers is that they can get more relevant information on the community they are interest in buying a home within. The 4 zones are being replaced with 8 districts. Some MLS System neighbourhoods are disappearing and almalgamating with a larger neighbourhood. (eg. Ranchland Estates almalgamates with Ranchlands; Lake Bonavista Estates almalgamates with Lake Bonavista; Garrison Woods amalgamates with Altadore.)
For me, it will be a bit of a challenge getting to learn some of the new nuances, but it does make a lot of sense and I welcome it. As far as I'm concerned, it's long overdue and the sooner it's implemented, the better!
Legal and safe secondary suites in Calgary appear on The City of Calgary’s registry. These suites have been inspected, and have met the numerous safety requirements under Alberta’s building code at the time the work allowed under the building permit was completed. Only suites that meet these safety requirements appear on the registry, and have been issued a numbered sticker that corresponds to their address. A map of all such suites is available in the link below.
In accordance with Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL), we do NOT give our permission for other commercial enterprises to contact us for any other commercial messages by email, text message, fax or telephone.
Data supplied by CREB®’s MLS ® System. CREB® is the owner of the copyright in its MLS® System. The Listing data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by CREB®.
The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.
The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS®, and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.