Courtesy of Bonny Dann
Besides making life at home a lot more pleasant and easier, a kitchen remodel is a home improvement project from which one can expect high returns on investment. Let us look at the important areas to be covered during a kitchen remodel.
Staying within the kitchen’s existing ‘footprint’ will save a lot of money. It means not altering the position of the existing plumbing, electrical and gas lines. Don't forget though, if your excisting systems are not up-to-date, you will need to invest in the necessary upgrades.
If you are looking at selling your home in the future, a home inspection may reveal that your existing electrical, plumbing and/or gas lines are outdated, and you may have to carry out the necessary upgrades or compensate the buyer by reducing the selling price. Therefore, it is always better to upgrade the electrical, plumbing and gas lines during a kitchen remodel, much before selling your home.
The second area to cover would be the cabinets. If the existing cabinets are in satisfactory working order, all you may need to do is repaint them and replace the hardware. You may be suprised at the cost of replacement cabinets, they a great return on investment.
Take a good look at your countertops – depending on the condition you may have to choose between refreshing and replacement. Make sure the colour of the backsplash complements the cabinets.
Changing the kitchen taps is also important – you will find new models which not only look trendy, but also come with enhanced functionality.
Flooring is an important area to be covered during a kitchen remodel. Preparing food in the kitchen may require you to stand for a long time, So consider flooring that acts as a cushion for your feet while being resistant to stains. Examples include ceramic tile, cork and cushion linoleum.
Another area to look at is your appliances. If you look through the latest kitchen appliances available today, you might see a few that you could really use in your kitchen – use these to replace the outdated appliances, and take care to invest in energy-efficient kitchen appliances, today most people prefer stainless steel.
The layout is extremely important and a kitchen remodel is a great opportunity to improve your kitchen’s layout. Today the trend is towards open floor plans. If your kitchen seems a little too cramped, just moving a doorway or bringing down a wall could open the kitchen right out.
THE PROCESS OF SELLING YOUR HOME (GUIDE ONLY)
- THE BUYER VIEWS THE HOME WITH THEIR REALTOR.
- THE BUYER MAKES AN OFFER ON YOUR HOME.
- THE SELLER & BUYER NEGOTIATE VIA THEIR REALTOR. ( Price & Conditions)
- THE SELLER ACCEPTS A PRICE & CONDITIONS ( Making sure his Real Property Report is correct)
- THE DEPOSIT AMOUNT IS AGREED BY BOTH PARTIES.
- THE CONDITION DATE IS AGREED BY BOTH PARTIES.
- THE POSSESSION DATE IS AGREED BY BOTH PARTIES.
- THE SELLER AND BUYER EXCHANGE LAWYER INFORMATION.
- THE DEPOSIT CHECK IS MADE OUT TO THE SELLERS REALTORS BROKER TRUST ACCOUNT.
THE CONDITION PERIOD BEGINS ( LENGTH AGREED BY BOTH PARTIES)
- THE SELLER INSTRUCTS HIS LAWYER, SELLERS REALTOR SENDS THE OFFER, PLUS ANY ADDITIONAL AGREED AND SIGNED SCHEDULES.
- THE BUYER ADVISES THEIR LAWYER OF THE OFFER TO PURCHASE AND PROVIDES A COPY OF THE OFFER.
- THE BUYER INSTRUCTS THEIR MORTGAGE PERSON OF THE OFFER TO PURCHASE AND PROVIDES A COPY OF THE OFFER AND INCLUDES BOTH PARTIES LAWYER INFORMATION.
- THE BUYER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR PROVIDING THE SELLER WITH THE WAIVER ON CONDITION DATE.( END OF CONDITION PERIOD)
- THE BUYERS LAWYER WILL CALL IN THEIR CLIENT USUALLY THE WEEK BEFORE POSSESSION . THIS MEETING WILL BE USED TO GO OVER EVERYTHING AND SIGN ALL RELIVANT DOCUMENTS.
- THE SELLER WILL PROVIDE ALL KEYS, GARAGE OPENERS, APPLIANCE HANDBOOKS, ALARM CODE INSTRUCTIONS, CANADA POST, GARBAGE COLLECTION INFO ON POSSESSION DATE AT A PRE ARRANGED TIME WITH THE BUYERS REALTOR/ BUYER.
- #buyingincalgary #4calgarybuyers
5 Mistakes to Avoid With Smaller Room Sizes
Let’s look at mistakes clients make with restricted spaces in their homes.
Mistake 1) Filling up smaller sized rooms with lots of medium or small sized pieces of furniture. Many may even justify this act by saying that small pieces of furniture are in proportion to small rooms. However, the right strategy for smaller rooms is actually just the opposite.
Mistake 2) Never cover up windows in smaller spaces by blocking out part or all of it’s natural light. Let the lights make the room appear bigger.
Mistake 3)Don’t go for Dark colours when painting walls in small rooms. Going dark for one feature wall is OK, going dark for all the walls will make a small room look even smaller.
Mistake 4) The big NO NO, don’t clutter rooms in confined spaces, clutter is a notorious space-eater – it eats up physical space as well as makes small rooms appear even cramped to the eyes.
Mistake 5) Never stop the flow of a room, people like to walk easily through a small room, not weave their way through furniture. Light and Space make the eye see the room as bigger than it actually is.
With the right strategies, you can make compact rooms look even more impressive than large rooms. And, you can make a smaller room look impressive on a lower budget, as the amount of premium finishes and elements required to ‘fill’ a restricted space is lesser than that required for larger spaces.
Make it work for you, less is best! #smallrooms #makingsmallspaceswork
25 EASY FIX UPS FOR YOUR CALGARY HOME
The condition of your home will have a huge impact on how fast it sells, and its eventual selling price. Preparing your home for sale can pay you huge dividends. Many fix ups cost very little and consist mostly of time and some elbow grease. Here are some simple tips to help your home show its best.
- Clean the entire home thoroughly. Shampoo carpets, wash walls, clean sills, window screens and blinds. Clean out light fixtures and dust shelving. Get detailed here.
- Clean the clutter from all closets, cupboards and cabinets.
- Make your rooms look as spacious as possible. Store unnecessary furnishing items that make your home look crowded.
- Arrange furnishing so that it is easy to walk through your home.
- Scale down the number of photos, pictures, portraits and posters hanging on walls. Make sure you patch all nail and screw holes.
- Keep your curtains and draperies open as a rule. You will want your home to show very light and bright. Find ways to screen any unappealing views.
- Make your kitchen shine. Remove clutter from counter tops and cabinets and store it. Keep your sink clean and clear of any dirty dishes.
- Clean your refrigerator, inside and out. Make sure that you do the simple things like putting an open box of baking soda in your fridge. Also, remove unnecessary clutter from the door.
- Clean your oven. Degrease it and keep it looking as good as possible.
- Keep scented candles burning in the kitchen and bathrooms. Pleasant fragrances will entice buyers to stay longer in your home.
- Keep bathrooms scrubbed and tidy with fresh soap and neatly hung towels. Try to color coordinate your bathrooms.
- Keep all sinks in the home clean and repair leaks or slow drains.
- Go through your entire home and touch up paint. Pay close attention to corners where there is traffic wear. Touch up baseboards, trim and cabinets and cupboards.
- Place plants or flower arrangements in strategic parts of the home. A splash of color from plants, flowers, pillows or small rugs can give your home some real flair.
- Make sure that your home is well lit. Put higher wattage bulbs in dark areas or corners. Keep all lights on during showings, even in mid day.
- Use mirrors on walls if necessary to reflect light and make rooms look larger.
- Make sure that all door knobs and keyed entries are working. Replace any worn knobs or handles.
- Clean up all around the house. Remove any debris piles such as wood, firewood and landscape trimmings. Trim all hedges, bushes and shrubbery away from the house. Keep all garden beds weeded and mulched.
- Put some color by your home's entrance with potted flowers. Keep them watered and looking attractive.
- Keep all walkways clear, clean and in good repair. This includes your driveways and any parking areas.
- Keep all outdoor furniture clean and in good repair.
- Clean your gutters and roof. Keep moss or algae from growing on, in or around them.
- Keep your yard and lawn areas clean and in good health. A green lawn makes a home look great. Keep your lawn edged and free from weeds.
- Repair any broken windows, screens, shutter or awnings.
- Clean your garage area. Remove clutter and make it look organized and as spacious as possible. We all do it, but try to have nothing in your garage but cars !
By following these 25 fix up tips, you can do a lot to increase the perceived value of your home and make it stand out above the competition!
Call Stu for your marketing Consultation
#easyfixups #yycdiytips #calgarydreamhomes #4calgarybuyers
3 TIPS FOR BEING BEAR AWARE IN THE ROCKIES
If you’re hiking in the Rockies you’re on the home turf of the resident grizzly and black bears. Parks Canada recommends taking the following steps to minimize the chance of an encounter:
Clap, sing and talk loudly. Don’t rely on bear bells alone to make your presence known.
Hike in a group of four or more and don’t let kids wander off.
LEASH THE DOG
Or better yet, leave the pooch at home. Dogs provoke defensive behaviour in bears.
For more information on bear safety visit pc.gc.ca.
I hope you have been enjoying this spring like weather! I moved in January and have been out planning my new gardens as there are none at this house and my girls are loving their walks and “suntanning” on the deck!
We have another month of a stable market in Calgary. Listings were down in every category March 2019 as compared to March 2018! Contrary to what you keep hearing about a Buyer’s Market it is still difficult as a buyer to find good quality listings and this situation will to continue to get more difficult as there are less properties being listed. Then prices will start to creep up, slowly at first, and then probably increasing very quickly as there will be a shortage of housing for sale. The same situation we faced in the late 1990s after a long recession.
Sales are up in semi-detached and row housing categories year over year which will push the higher price range of sales up. Sales to listings ratio in detached homes stayed consistent and so did benchmarks prices which is an indicator of a balanced market not a buyer’s or a seller’s market which is great for the public whether buying or selling. I am so happy listings were not up in March, the traditional “spring market”, knowing it will lead to a more balanced market. I am enclosing the entire CREB report.
Enjoy the next month, hopefully without snow, but with some rain as it is very dry.
Real Estate Professionals 403-975-0773
If you’re a first-time homebuyer, the recent federal budget announcement may help you get into your first home.
The Federal government introduced two measures in their recent budget to address first time home buyers and affordability -- A withdrawal increase to the RRSP Home Buyer’s Plan and a new Shared Equity mortgage program.
These measures are aimed at helping first-time homebuyers like millennials and new Canadians break into a housing market. The Shared Equity program, with its interest-free loan program may help earners most affected by the stress test.
Here are the two announcements:
Home Buyer’s Plan Withdrawal Increase. First time home buyers can now withdraw up to $35,000 from their RRSP, tax free, up from $25,000, for a down payment. If you have a co-borrower, that total could be up to $70,000.
First Time Home Buyer Incentive. Billed as a "shared equity mortgage”, the government will lend first-time home buyers’ money to buy a home. According to the budget document, this new incentive "enables homebuyers to reduce the amount of money required from an insured mortgage without increasing the amount they must save for a down payment.”
The loans can be worth up to 10% of the purchase price of newly built homes, or 5% of the price of resale homes. The program is available for buyers with household incomes under $120,000 annually, and the loan portion has a cap of four times annual income.
Shared-equity mortgages do not require interest payments or continuing principal repayments, with the loan repaid when the home is sold.
While that might not seem doable for many households, especially in higher-priced markets, the program is aimed at first-time homebuyers who have been shut out of housing by new mortgage stress-test rules.
Mortgage Professionals Canada, the association for mortgage brokers has estimated that the original stress test would compel about 200,000 potential home buyers to change their plans in the first two years of operation. This program may help a number of those people.
Of course, the devil is in the details, which are still being worked out and I will keep you up-to-date on any new information.
If you would like to know more or have any questions, please call me today.
Cathy: 403-660-1169 The Mortgage Group
Yes the Spring Market is just about here, showings are up and the snow is melting so more buyers are looking at what is out there. So below is a brief guide of how the process will work. Know the amount you have to spend, better not to be "House poor" so don't go to your max if you can help it. We are happy to work with you and show you homes in the areas you like that fit your budget and lifestyle. 403-850-0669
1:The Pre Approval
Arrange a meeting with your Mortgage person and get things moving by filling out your application. Be prepared and take with you income verification, an employment letter and confirmation of your down payment. Be sure ask exactly what the lender will need ahead of time and once approved, ask for a Pre Approval Letter of confirmation.
2: View Homes & Condos
Work on which are your preferred areas and what is your maximum budget and we will email you the active listings within those areas and parameters. At a time/date that works for both of us we will set up a tour of all the properties that fit your criteria and you want to see.
3: Selecting Your New Home
Most people go with their “gut feeling” when they enter the home they really like. Once they are inside then we start to tick the boxes. The location will of been decided beforehand and logistics for work, schools etc already decided. Once we we the short list we can second view and be “objective” does it REALLY work and shall we make an offer.
4: Putting In The Offer
Our offer will be based on relevant comparable sold’s in the area, time on the market and upgrades to the property. We will have a “Starting Point” this can’t be too low because you want the seller not to dismiss your offer, but to work with you so that both sides are happy. Our goal is to achieve the best terms and price for our clients, based on our combined 24 years experience.
5: Offer Accepted
The offer is firstly accepted on price, we add to that our conditions and possession date. The most common conditions are usually Financing, Home Inspection and (or) Condo Document Review, and sometimes review of Bye-Laws if applicable. In a Rural Property Purchase we could add to this Septic Inspection, Well Inspection & Water Analysis (or Co-op Water Analysis if applicable). Usually our length of condition period would be 10-14 business days before we remove our conditions after we are satisfied.
After all is accepted we are in the condition period and need to set up all inspections and reviews.
6: Removing Conditions
All our conditions have been met, if a few smaller things pop up during the Home Inspection we will amend the contract to have the seller put them right before our “Walkthrough” prior to possession. (usually 48 hours)
7: All documents To the Lawyers Office
We will see that all documents are sent to your lawyer’s office as soon as possible. You will then arrange to meet with your lawyer, usually 7-10 days before possession to sign all the required paperwork. Make sure you bring a check or your credit card as the lawyer will be making adjustments for down payments and work done as previously agreed with them.
8: Keys are Releasable
We will make arrangements to meet you at your new home for the “Walkthrough” and we also meet you there when Keys are released by the Sellers Lawyer on possession day. The only thing we suggest is not to book your Telus /Shaw or removal company until the next day, in case there are any hold ups, it doesn’t often happen, but it can.
Then you can just enjoy your new home!!
Happy hunting! Stu
Call or text us to discuss your options 403.850.0669
Things to do before listing your Calgary property
If you are planning on selling your home now is the time as the snow melts, to prepare it. Here are a few things you need to consider before listing the property. At the moment inventory is not TO high but for sure you will have more competition in the next two months!
Instead of a potential buyer looking at maybe 12 homes in the next two months, in March there may be only 6 that fit their criteria, and yours is one of them.
The second thing to do is to make sure that your property is ‘sale-ready’. Any area that requires repair or paint should be attended to, and you should carry out the necessary improvements and upgrades through renovating or remodelling, so as to maximise the appeal and has the features to hold its own against the competition.
Any items left unfixed may be revealed during a home inspection, and this can delay the sale or even cause it to fall through. Needless to say, you will need to clear all the clutter and extra furniture to free up the space and make your home look bright open and spacious. Your home must be ‘showing-ready’ the day you get it listed, so do not leave the job of de-cluttering and cleaning for the last minute. Take time and effort to give your home a thorough clean, if you have to hire the services of professional cleaners it is worth it.
Probably the most important step to take before listing your property is your own mental preparation. Becoming emotionally detached from your home is essential for a successful sale. Such an emotional detachment will help you at every step of the selling process, including working with us on the right price for the property, as opposed to setting a price based on it’s sentimental value.
We can guide you through the entire process. Staging maybe and curb appeal certainly are the finishing touches. We provide our complimentary re staging advice team member.
After this and getting our photographer to take professional photographs to show the home at it’s best is a given in our service. Make sure that you no longer see it as ‘your home’ but as the start of a new adventure that will start the journey to your new home.
With the right strategies and the help of a good team, selling your home can be a smooth stress free process.
Text or Call for a Marketing Consultation Direct 403.850.0669 or email at email@example.com
You have just finished moving to your new house, and you are exhausted, after dragging in the last box. You deserve to relax a little, but not completely, because there is one crucial step still remaining – YOU HAVE TO UNPACK!
People assume that the worst is over after all the boxes and furniture get past the front door of the new house. Unpacking the right way is extremely important to prevent clutter from being reborn in your new house. If you have struggled with clutter in your previous house, unpacking the right way becomes twice as important for you.
So, taking your time to unpack is a better strategy than going about it fast. In fact, it would help if you packed what you need the most separately from what you do not use that often. This way you can take your time to unpack stuff that is not for immediate use.
Preventing clutter and using a system to unpack will also help you get organized right from the start. This especially applies to rooms like kitchens, where unpacking and organizing the items onto shelves and draws will get rid of a fair amount.
When you organize your moving boxes label them for which room they are going in. When the truck arrives put someone on Point Duty! Instructing the movers - Upstairs , Downstairs, Kitchen, Family Room, Carols Bedroom etc. Mark the childrens bedroom doors with sticky notes so the movers know exactly where the box is going. Use a clip board, list the box number with what is in it written alongside. If you don't track and organize- it's just a pile of boxes lol
A new home is a new beginning – so start by unpacking the right way.
Were here if you need us with any questions and we have used our recommended movers, they were awesome and very helpful.
#calgarydreamhomes #movingincalgary #movinghome
A LOOK AT THE MARKET FROM FEBRUARY 2019
The First Type of Buyers
All buyers fall into the different repair categories of your home. The majority of home buyers will be buyers that are families, couples, and people who know very little about making repairs or who want to move into a home that they know is in good condition. They do not want to worry about things going wrong and needing repairs done. They are only looking for homes that are in good to excellent condition and will pay a higher price for them. This is the majority of the real estate market, so if your home is being sold as is, you will have a smaller amount of buyers to choose from or be aware that you may get a low ball offer. Remember a $2000 repair to you is seen by a buyer as a $5000 repair.
The Second type of buyers
This Type are the ones that are willing to fix small to medium repairs on the home. This is the type of buyer that is going to be looking for a fixer upper home. This could be someone that doesn’t have a lot of money, or maybe a new family that is buying their first home and they are willing to put in some extra work to make the home their Calgary Dream Home or First Home to Dream Home in fact. This category includes investors who are looking for a home with some minor repairs that can be a quick flip.
The Third type of buyers
These are the ones who buy and repair homes for a living. This will usually be investors and also contractors. This class of people will not want to move into the home, and are not afraid to tackle some projects. In reality it is what these types of people do for a living so it is just in a days work for them. Because they do this for a living they can estimate the work quick and do it at the right price.
When you are trying to figure out the right price for your home you will want to look for the average sale price of the home in your market area and with us determine fair market value. Keep in mind that the fair market value is based on homes that are in good condition and don’t need a lot, or any, repairs. And we will take you to see your competitors that our current listings.
So, if you decide to sell a house as is, then you must lower the price of your home to below market value in order to get it sold. It cannot command the same price as comparable houses in good conditions since home buyers will always chose your neighbor’s home instead of yours because it is in better shape. And if you list higher than them, you will only end up selling there’s for them!
Get Help Making The Right Marketing Decision
If you are not sure what repairs need to be done to your home it is a good idea to get a home inspector to come and look at what needs to be done before you list. You may also be able to get them to give you an idea of the cost of the repairs and what it will take to bring your home up to good saleable condition. We work with numerous Home Inspectors and pre Inspections are a better rate.
If you can afford the money and the time, then it is good idea to have the house repaired and sell it since you will receive the highest sales price for the home.
We are here to help, firstname.lastname@example.org Direct 403.850.0669
#homebuying #calgarydreamhomes #homepricing
As we head towards the spring, you may be starting to look at buying a home.
Remember though that your Lifestyle is a very important when you are considering where to buy.
Two very important things are the home obviously, but also take a good look at the surrounding neighbourhood. Choose a community that fits your unique lifestyle!
Is your new home going to lend itself to your unique lifestyle. Ask yourself these questions:
- How much entertaining do we do?
- How important is it to have good schools located nearby?
- How long will the commute to work be?
- How big of a backyard do we require?
- Do we need a good sized recreation room?
- How easy will it be to get to all those after hour things like golfing, dance lessons, Baseball or Hockey practices, The Movies and other activities we enjoy?
- How important is it to be in a quiet area?
- Do we want to be near a local park or jogging / cycle paths
These are just suggestions, you can easily create your own list of questions that you can tick off as you move through them.
Email us if you need help email@example.com
#calgarydreamhomes # 4calgarybuyers #calgaryspringmarket
A slew of changes affecting the way developers handle purchase agreements, trust funds and much more took effect due to the passage of the Condominium Property Amendment Act and supporting regulations. These changes were introduced to tackle numerous issues faced by new condominium buyers, one of which was developers going bankrupt without adequate protection of the purchasers’ deposit.
Our good friend Jeff Tincher gives us last months look at the Calgary Market - whilst on the move!
#MONTHLYMARKETMINUTE #CALGARYREALESTATE #CALGARYDREAMHOMES #LUXURYHOMESCALGARY
2018 could have been the hottest year on record for Canadian home sales (if not for this policy change)
2018 could have been the hottest year on record for Canadian home sales (if not for this policy change)
Josh Sherman Feb 6, 2019
The Canadian housing market had a rough year in 2018: sales dropped by 11 percent while the 4.1 percent decline in average price was the worst performance seen since 1995.
But it didn’t have to be that way, suggests the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA’s) top economist.
If federal policymakers hadn’t gotten involved by introducing new stress testing, Canada’s housing market probably would’ve reached never-before-seen heights in 2018, writes Gregory Klump, the association’s chief economist, in an Economic Insight.
After all, he notes, the market had lots going for it. The economist reasons that strong rates of employment and immigration, half the Millennial generation turning 30 — and thus entering the prime age for first-time homebuyers — and low interest rates created an environment for a booming market.
But at the onset of 2018, new mortgage stress testing was introduced from federal watchdog the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institution’s “Guideline B-20” — and that took the wind out of the market’s sales.
The measure forced borrowers seeking an uninsured mortgage from a federally regulated financial institution to qualify at a rate that’s 200 basis points over what they’re applying for or that matches the Bank of Canada’s five-year benchmark rate, whichever of the two is higher.
Previously, borrowers could avoid stress testing by putting forward a downpayment of 20 percent or more on an uninsured mortgage.
Of course, even with the stress testing in place homebuyers can go to provincially regulated private lenders. But they typically offer higher interest rates than the big banks.
So with borrowers now facing a higher bar for mortgage qualification, CREA’s Klump doesn’t see the Canadian housing market regaining its stride any time soon.
“Unlike past policy changes, housing markets do not appear to be adjusting to this one. The boot prints from B-20 will continue to keep housing markets in check in 2019—and beyond,” Klump writes.
#mortgagerules #newchanges #mortgagehelp
By CRAIG TORRES / BLOOMBERG January 30, 2019
(Bloomberg) — The Federal Reserve said it will be “patient” on any future interest-rate moves and signaled flexibility on the path for reducing its balance sheet, in a substantial pivot away from its bias just last month toward higher borrowing costs.
#calgarydreamhomes #calgarybankrates #calgarymortgages