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Property tax increases to stifle homebuyers?... Chinese New Year spurs real estate in Vancouver... Million-dollar homes a growing trend...


Property tax increases to stifle homebuyers?... Chinese New Year spurs real estate in Vancouver... Million-dollar homes a growing trend...

Property tax increases to stifle homebuyers?
Some in Manitoba’s real estate industry worry rising property taxes could drive people away from Winnipeg. According to CTV.ca, the Manitoba Real Estate Association said homeowners could bolt to bedroom communities where taxes are lower. "Unfortunately, along with those choices is going to be longer commute times. More impact on the environment. More demand for infrastructure and more duplication of services,” said Lorne Weiss of the Manitoba Real Estate Association.

Chinese New Year spurs real estate in Vancouver 
Weekly home sales continue to soar into the year of the sheep. In fact, sales for attached and detached homes during the last week of February was the highest in six weeks since Jan.18. According to an article from the Vancouver Observer, based on statistics published by Urban Vancouver Properties, attached homes sales stands at 79 sales more than the weekly average of 344 of the five preceding five weeks. Detached sales also rose 97 sales higher than the average of 212, an increase of 46 per cent. Cory Raven, managing broker at Re/Max, says Chinese New Year heightens whichever housing trend is dominate in that year. “Any year where we have an already busy market, it seems like Chinese New Year speeds [it] up even more.” 

“If it’s a slower market like we saw in 2008 and 2009 with less sale, we didn’t notice it as much,” added Raven. “But generally speaking, if the market is busy, than Chinese New Year is even busier.” Based on data reported by The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) February is trailing the highest selling January since 2010. 

Million-dollar homes a growing trend 
Depending on where you live in Canada, a million-dollar home can be either a mansion or a fixer-upper.
In cities such as Vancouver and Toronto, the average cost of a detached home will set you back more than seven figures. Meanwhile, the market in Alberta has seen sales and prices drop since the collapse of oil.

In January, Deutsche Bank AG warned that homes in Canada are overvalued by 63 per cent, and that homeowners are "in serious trouble" due to rising debt levels. But the Bank of Canada's surprise decision to cut interest rates that same month, has given some Canadians incentive to keep buying property.

 

For more information on your market dont hesitate to reach out to us directly.



Are buyers getting a good first impression of your property from the street? It's more important than you might think. Here are some tips:


Your home at a glance

 

Have you ever driven up to a restaurant and your first impression was disappointing? Perhaps the windows looked dark and gloomy, the façade was worn and unattractive or for some other reason it just didn't look like a tempting place to eat.

 

It could still be a fantastic restaurant – a real gem. But, your first impression has soured your anticipation. If you still walk through the front door, it will likely be with the expectation of being disappointed.

 

This scenario often plays out in the real estate market as well.

 

A buyer drives up to a home for sale and quickly forms an impression based on what he sees "from the curb". That's why you'll hear real estate experts talk about the importance of "curb appeal". It's one of the most important selling points of a property.

 

If you plan to put your home on the market, you obviously want your home to look as attractive as possible from the street. Fortunately, there are many simple things you can do to improve curb appeal.

 

For example, you can trim shrubs and hedges, plant flowers, clean the walkway and driveway, paint the front door and garage door, and clean the exteriors of the windows. All these projects are relatively easy and inexpensive. Yet, each can make a dramatic improvement to how your home looks at first glance.

 

Don't be like the great restaurant that’s hidden behind an unkept façade. Make sure your curb appeal reflects the overall value of your property.

 

Looking for more advice on selling your home quickly and for the best price? Call today.

 



Some Home Renovation points..


Home Renovations That Pay Off
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There are two main reasons why homeowners invest in a home renovation or major redecorating project: They want to enjoy the results of the new kitchen, bathroom, flooring or other improvement they’ve made; and/or, they hope that the money they spend will come back to them – at least in part – when they sell their home.

So which projects are most likely to increase the resale value of a home? A story by Joanne Cleaver, featured on MoneyWatch.com last year, identified five renovation projects that give you the most bang for your renovation buck.

Floors. Old, scuffed or dated flooring tends to get noticed by home buyers, regardless of how well the rest of the room is decorated. New flooring — especially stone, ceramic tile and hardwood – can make any room look larger and more inviting.

Kitchen. When it comes to selling your home, the kitchen is one of the most important rooms. The more modern, new and spacious it looks, the faster your home will tend to sell. That’s why you can expect a pay back of up to 80% of the cost of a kitchen renovation.

Bathrooms. Who isn’t impressed by a new and gleaming bathroom with a big shower, modern faucets and other attractive décor? That’s why hotels spend so much time and money making their bathrooms look great. According to the Cleaver article, homeowners tend to get a pay back of up to 75% of the cost of a bathroom upgrade.

Closets. Any improvement that makes a closet look roomy and organized tends to result in a pay back of most of its cost. Even something as simple as installing a good closet organizer can have a dramatic effect.

Energy-saving upgrades. In this age of increasing energy costs and environmental concerns, home buyers are drawn to such features as energy-saving windows, lighting, thermostats and more.

Keep in mind that home improvements don’t just have an impact on the selling price of your home, they also help to sell your home faster.

For more information, call today.



Don’t make selling your home and buying another one overwhelming.


Selling your home doesn't have to be overwhelming

 Overwhelming

When some people think about selling their home, they imagine all the things they will have to do: paint the kitchen, clean closets, prepare for viewings, find another home, arrange financing, start packing, etc. It can all seem very overwhelming very quickly.

 

In fact, the long to-do list you imagine you’ll have to deal with may dissuade you from making a move!

 

It doesn't have to be that way.

 

There are many ways to make selling your home and buying another relatively simple and easy.

 

Sure, there will be some work to do. You may need to prepare your property so that it looks appealing to potential buyers – cleaning, decluttering, doing some repairs, etc. Of course, you will also need to view some properties for sale in order to find your next dream home.

 

But those activities may not be as time-consuming or difficult as you had imagined. In fact, you and your family might actually enjoy the experience – and see it as an adventure.

 

The trick is to work with the right REALTOR®, someone who can guide you through the process, show you the shortcuts, and generally make things easier for you.

 

It's a little like baking your first cake from scratch. The task seems daunting, unless you have a master baker by your side to guide you step-by-step through the process. Then it's a lot easier, and even fun!

 

That's what a good REALTOR® can do for you. Looking for one? Call today.



How to make sure buyers notice the best features of your home:


What home buyers love to see

 

Buyers are more likely to make an offer on your home if they see a lot of things they love about it. So what do buyers love to see?

 

One of the main things they like to see is a lot of space. Of course, you can't change the size of your rooms, but there is a lot you can do to make small spaces in your home seem more spacious.

 

Buyers also love to see a clean and uncluttered home. Think of how inviting a hotel room looks at first glance, with everything neat and organized. Of course, your home isn't a hotel, but the more neat and attractive you can make each room, the better.

 

One thing buyers don't love to see is potential maintenance issues. So as much as possible, get things fixed or updated.

 

In fact, the more "finished" and "move in ready" your home looks, the more likely a buyer is to make an offer.

 

Don't forget the surrounding neighbourhood either. A buyer may not take the time to explore the area, so be sure to make a list of the most appealing features. You might want to take a picture of the brand new playground just down the street or print off a local map showing nearby shopping, theatre and other points of interest.

 

It's not about creating a false impression. Rather, it's about making your home look its best and drawing attention to its most enticing features.

 

Want more home selling tips? Call today.



Healthy foods that give you a quick energy boost:


Energy FoodsFoods that boost your energy

 

Many people order an espresso or reach for an energy drink when they need a boost. However, there are other foods that can give you a similar increase in energy and are, arguably, a lot healthier. Here are a few examples:

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  • Coconut oil. It contains high quantities of medium chain fats, which are a quick source of energy.

 

  • Honey. It tastes sweet because it's a natural form of sugar. As we all know, sugar gives you a quick boost.

 

  • Iron containing foods. Lack of iron in your diet can leave you feeling sluggish. Adding more beans, spinach, and lentils to your diet – perhaps in salads – can help boost your iron levels.

 

  • Nuts. Almonds, cashews and other nutrient-rich nuts are the ideal quick snack for an energy boost.

 

  • Dark chocolate. It’s great news for chocolate lovers, but keep the portions small.
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Finally, not drinking enough water can also rob you of energy. In fact, water may be the best energy-boosting "food" of them all.