Leanne Drolet

Royal LePage Sterling Realty

Office 604-421-1010

Cell 778-840-7211

Email: Leanne@realtygal.ca

Categories

Whether you're painting your home to prepare it for sale, or simply to make it more attractive for your own enjoyment, choosing the right colour is super important! A colour isn't just a matter of taste, it's also, to a large extent, about the emotions it elicits.


If you're painting your foyer, for example, you may want it to seem warm and welcoming. So, light, warmer tones might be appropriate as that colour is often interpreted as friendly.


In your living room, you may want to create an atmosphere of comfort and relaxation. In that case, consider shades of greens or grays as those colours communicate peacefulness and calm.


Want the rec room to look vibrant and energetic? Brighter colours communicate those emotions, possibly shades of reds.


Where do you find more information about colour psychology? There are plenty of charts available online. Just Google "colour psychology charts". They can help you select just the right colour to convey the feeling you want for a room.


Of course, if all else fails, you can't go wrong with soft beiges, or light gray/beiges especially when selling your home. Neutral colours are often interpreted as reliable and buyers are able to picture their own furniture and items in a more neutral palet.


Have questions about painting and other fix-ups that will help sell your home faster and for the best price? Give me a call!  

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If you have a home that is overdue for a renovation, you might be worried that it will be difficult to sell as a "fixer-upper".  In fact, you might delay listing your property for that reason.


The good news is, you don’t need to fix up everything in your home to prepare it for sale. You can be selective and choose only those projects that are most likely to help your home show well and sell quickly.


Here are some projects to consider:


• Repairs. Few things stand out more during a viewing than something in obvious need of repair. That includes minor issues, like a dripping bathroom faucet, as well as major concerns, such as the central air conditioning unit not working or the gas not on for a gas fireplace. Get these repairs done!


• Painting. Painting is one of the easiest and most affordable DIY projects you can do. Yet the impact it can have on your home is stunning. Some rooms are completely transformed by a fresh coat of paint.


• Kitchens & Bathrooms. Buyers love to see great looking kitchens and bathrooms. In fact, there are even magazines devoted just to those rooms! You don't necessarily need to do a major renovation of these spaces, but a makeover can be a good idea. Consider replacing sinks, countertops, and/or cabinet hardware.


• Floors. If the floors in any of your rooms have become worn and unsightly, look at options for refreshing them. Consider replacing carpeting, refinishing hardwood, and/or getting tiles professionally cleaned and polished.


• Outdoors. Sometimes you can compensate (a little) for a less-than-ideal interior by sprucing up the outdoor space. Explore ways to improve your deck or patio, walkways, and landscaping.


Even if your home is older, you can make it more attractive to buyers with any one of these projects.


Want more ideas for finding eager buyers for your home and getting the best price when you sell? Give me a call!

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November 18-25, 2019

The REALTORS Care® Blanket Drive is coming soon!

Here's how you can help

We collect blankets and warm clothing to help the homeless, women and children in need, and persons living in supportive housing. Your donations are kept in the community where they are collected, and are given to charities that distribute them directly to those in need.

Please donate the following items for all ages:

  • gently used or new blankets or sleeping bags
  • warm clothing, coats
  • hats, gloves, scarves
  • new socks and underwear

Socks are especially important for the homeless. They're as good as gold. 

REALTORS Care® Blanket Drive story

Way back in 1994, some caring REALTORS® in Vancouver observed the homeless situation in the city’s eastside and said to themselves, we’ve got to do something.

They put out an appeal to their colleagues for warm blankets and coats and collected enough donations to help 3,000 of Vancouver’s homeless in the downtown core.

That single act of kindness has blossomed into one of the largest annual collections of warm clothing and blankets, helping homeless people and the working poor in every single community in the Lower Mainland.

Since then, thousands of REALTORS® from Whistler to Hope have collected enough donations to help more than 385,000 people in need. Each year, more than 75 dedicated members pick-up and deliver all the donations, and well over 100 real estate offices in the Lower Mainland act as collection depots.

The REALTORS Care® Drive now collects an astonishing amount of warm, winter items on behalf of dozens of local charities to help about 35,000 people each year.


Do you have some warm clothing and blankets to donate?  Contact Leanne @ Leanne@RealtyGal.ca 

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You've likely heard of the term "curb appeal"...


It refers to the initial impression buyers get when they first see your property from the street. If the impression is a good one, it sets the right tone for the rest of the home viewing and can even get you more money on the sale of your home!  


Here are some proven ideas and simple solutions that you can do to your home to help with the first impressions!


• Sweep the walkway leading up to the front entrance. Add a new welcome mat and a flower pot. Also, wash down the front door. 


• Wash both the inside and outside of the front windows. You'll be amazed at the difference that can make.


• If possible, remove cars from the driveway. Let buyers imagine their own cars parked there!


• Mow the lawn. Lightly trim the hedges. Weed flower beds.


• Remove anything from inside window sills that may look unsightly from the outside. Try putting a couple of flowering plants there instead.


• Place any trash bins out-of-sight. For example, put them in the garage or neatly at the side of the house.


• If the entrance door hardware is old and worn, change it. New hardware can make a bigger difference than you might think.


• Make sure the outdoor lights are working, especially if you're showing your home in the evening.


• Add some flowering plants to flower beds, or buy a couple of portable potted plants and place them strategically.


• If you have a power washer, give the walkway, driveway or stair rail a quick blast! 


These simple improvements may seem minor, but anything that helps buyers form a more positive first impression of your home is worth the effort!  


If you would like more ideas, please feel free to contact me!  I'm always here to help!

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Imagine driving through a desirable neighbourhood and, just as you turn a corner, you see the absolutely perfect home! Guess what? It's for sale! But, there’s a problem. Your current property isn't on the market. In fact, until this moment, you hadn’t seriously considered moving. So what do you do?


Your first step is to find out more about the listing.


*Get a description of the property.

*Find out the listing price.

*Check out the size, layout, number of bedrooms and other features.

*If it all looks good, schedule a viewing.


Chances are, you can do all that in less than a day. If you go to see the property and still love it, your next step is to determine if it fits within your budget. To do that, you'll need to quickly find out the Current Market Value of your home — what it will likely sell for — so you can determine how much money you'll have available after your outstanding mortgage and any other costs are deducted. It’s a smart idea to speak to your lender about getting a pre-approved mortgage at this point too.


Next, you'll need to make an offer on the new home. Depending on the competitiveness of the neighbourhood, and the likelihood of multiple offers, you might need to list your home first. That, along with a pre-approved mortgage, will make your offer more credible. You might end up buying the new home before your current property sells. Although that might cause some jitters, this scenario happens all the time in real estate. If you do the right things, and prepare your home properly, there's a good probability it will sell in time and that everything else regarding the two transactions will go smoothly. But, you do need to move quickly and make some fast decisions if you want to get that perfect home.


I can help. Call me!

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 Wouldn't it be nice if you had all the time in the world to find your next dream home?


You could leisurely browse the current listings, select homes you'd like to see, schedule visits on dates that are most convenient for you, and make an offer on a property only after you've had plenty of time to consider all the alternatives. Sure, that sometimes happens, but unfortunately it's not how it typically happens...


Often, people shopping for a home are on a timeline. Sometimes a very tight timeline. So how do you find your next dream home when you don't have all the time in the world?


First, you need to develop a clear picture of the home you're looking to buy. How many bedrooms? What size of property? What type of structure (two story, back split, etc.)? Close to shopping, transit and/or schools? Then, you need to list your preferences. These might include "large kitchen" or "main floor office" or covered parking. Once you've completed that exercise, you'll have a more detailed profile of the type of property you want! That will make it easier to decide which of the listings on the market you want to see. You should also narrow down the area in which you'd like to live. If you have three or four targeted areas, and only consider listings in those areas, your home search will be much faster.


What if you don't know the neighbourhoods well? It's best to visit a few. Drive around. Explore. Get as much neighbourhood data as possible, such as demographics, recreational activities, parks, shopping, schools, etc. Then choose the neighbourhoods that fit your lifestyle.


Finally, the best way to find a new home on a tight schedule is to work with the right real estate agent — someone who, like me, is experienced in the local market. Call me anytime!

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 Have you ever considered renting out a room to a student or renovating your basement into a self-contained rental apartment? It’s a big decision that many people ask about!


There are many pros and cons to consider. On the pro side, renting can provide you with additional income. An extra few hundred dollars a month can go a long way towards paying down your mortgage or splurging on an exotic summer vacation. Creating rentable living space in your home — for example, an “in-law suite” featuring a kitchenette and bathroom — may also increase your property’s market value.


On the con side, you’ll have more costs and responsibilities as a landlord. For example, you might need to purchase extra insurance because basic home insurance policies typically do not cover rental units, even if you’re just renting out a room. You’ll also be responsible for dealing with repairs sometimes in the middle of the night. Also, if you’re not careful about the renter you choose, you might end up with a “problem tenant”. For example, you could have a tenant who is consistently late on rent payments or simply stops paying. That can be stressful.


If you’re deciding whether or not to rent, be sure to check local laws and regulations. Many jurisdictions have very strict rules regarding renting out space in a residential property, and those rules change frequently.  Make sure you get the latest information and way all the pros and cons!



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Your neighbourhood has a lot of features that can help sell your home faster!  Unfortunately, buyers don’t usually notice those features just by driving around. So, you need to make sure they get all the information they need about your neighbourhood and that's where I come in!


For example, say homes don’t go on the market often in your area. That’s an indication that the quality of life in the neighbourhood is so good that no one wants to leave! In real estate we measure the area’s “turnover rate”, and it’s handy data to have when listing your home. Demographic data can also be helpful when selling your property. If your neighbourhood has a lot of families, for example, that’s going to be appealing to buyers with kids. Even local development plans can play a role in making your home more attractive to buyers. If a new ramp to a major highway is in the works nearby, getting to work is going to be easier. That could be a big benefit to commuters.


Other types of data that can help sell your home include: • Planned local construction.

• Proposals for neighbourhood improvements. (For example, a new playground.)

• Rates at which local property values are increasing.


Any information that shows the advantages of living in your area is going to be useful when selling. By the way, this is the kind of information I put together to provide to prospective buyers when selling your home. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me!

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 Hopefully, this will never happen to you. But, there are circumstances – a fire, for example – when you and your family would need to exit through a window.  It pays to be prepared!


Your first step is to determine which windows are safe to use as an exit. There should be at least one on each level. The windows you select will need to provide enough space for a person to climb through (at least a 20 inch opening). Make sure everyone knows which windows are “safe exit” windows, and how to open them.


Keep in mind that windows may have screens, so ensure everyone knows how to remove those as well. For a second floor window, consider purchasing a portable escape ladder. These are compact and easily stowed in a closet or under a bed. When you need it, it hangs off the sill and expands into a ladder all the way to the ground. It’s not designed for everyday use, but it will get you and your family out!


Rehearsal is also a good idea. You want everyone to know how to get to the nearest “safe exit” window – especially in the dark.


Finally, keep your windows in a good state of repair. According to the National Fire Safety Association, windows should open easily for everyone, and should not have anything in front of them that will prevent or delay a quick exit.



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Imagine this scenario...


You purchase a new home and move in. A few weeks later, you hear a strange rumbling sound. It’s the furnace. It’s only a year old, yet it’s sputtering like it’s twenty. You realize you’ll have to call in an HVAC contractor to get it fixed. You’re thinking, “Ouch! This is going to be expensive.” Well, maybe not. You see, since that furnace is relatively new, it might be covered by its original warranty — even for you, the new owner.  But a warranty is useless if you don’t know it exists.


Recent studies suggest that upwards of 50% of people pay to get items fixed that were actually covered by a warranty. So, when purchasing a new home, be sure to ask this simple question: “What warranties do you have for items, materials or workmanship in this house?” Warranties are common on new stoves, fridges, washers, dryers and other big ticket appliances. Some such warranties are transferrable, which means they are still in force when the items pass from one owner to another. Even less expensive items, such as electronic thermostats and automatic garage door openers, may be covered by a transferrable manufacturer’s warranty.


If the home you’re purchasing is relatively new (say, less than 10 years old), the builder’s warranty may also still be in force. That can be handy if a structural problem arises. Even recent renovations, may have come with a labour and/or installation warranty of some kind.


As you can see, warranties are everywhere! The more you’re aware of them, the more you’ll save when something needs repair or replacement.

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Imagine finding a home you love, making an offer, and then finding out there are other competing offers on the table. Ouch.


If you’re looking for a property in a competitive market, it is likely that there will be multiple offers. Even just one can create the risk that you’ll lose the home. So how do you make sure your offer is enticing enough to win over the seller? Here are some ideas:


Don’t make a low-ball offer. If you do, it might be dismissed and you probably won’t get another chance to bid — especially if the other competing offers are near the listing price.


• Have a pre-arranged mortgage and include that with your offer. This reassures the seller there won’t be any money issues. (Most lenders will provide you with a pre-arranged mortgage certificate for this purpose.)


• Go in with a price high enough that the seller will be interested, but not so high as to be leaving money on the table. This is tricky and requires a savvy knowledge of the current market.


• Have a REALTOR® present the offer on your behalf.


A REALTOR® will know how to do so professionally, and in a manner that gives you the best chance of getting the home. In a competitive situation, working with a REALTOR® who is an expert on the local market — and a skilled negotiator — is crucial.


Looking for a REALTOR® like that? Give me a call today!

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In almost every movie featuring a house on fire, the actors seem to be able to move around the house and see just fine, while beating back flames with a shirt or coat. Of course, that’s not what happens in real fires.


When there’s fire in a home, there is typically complete darkness (because the power goes out) and a cloud of spreading thick, black smoke makes it difficult to see and breathe. That’s why knowing how to get out of your house — fast — is crucial.


Experts recommend rehearsing what to do in case there’s a fire. Make sure everyone in the family has an exit plan. Each should know exactly how to get out, including primary and secondary exits, and where the family will meet once safely outside.


Never attempt to take anything with you. It may seem like you have plenty of time to grab a coat or purse, but the characteristics of a fire can change in seconds.


As a failsafe, in case you can’t exit through a door, you should determine in advance which window has the safest exit. Make sure that the window opens easily and everyone knows how to remove the screen or any other obstruction.


Finally, don’t call the fire department from inside your house. Get out first, then make the call!

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The real estate board of Greater Vancouver reports that home sales and listings trends are below long-term averages in the Metro Vancouver* housing market. This is due largely to reduced activity in the detached home market.


Residential property sales in the region totalled 1,523 in January 2017, a 39.5 per cent decrease from the 2,519 sales recorded in January 2016 and an 11.1 per cent decrease compared to December 2016 when 1,714 homes sold.


Last month’s sales were 10.3 per cent below our 10-year January sales average.  “From a real estate perspective, it’s a lukewarm start to the year compared to 2016,” Dan Morrison, Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) president said. “While we saw near record-breaking sales at this time last year, home buyers and sellers are more reluctant to engage so far in 2017.”


New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 4,140 in January 2017. This represents a 6.8 per cent decrease compared to the 4,442 homes listed in January 2016 and a 215.5 per cent increase compared to December 2016 when 1,312 properties were listed.


The total number of homes currently listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver is 7,238, a 9.1 per cent increase compared to January 2016 (6,635) and a 14.1 per cent increase compared to December 2016 (6,345).


The sales-to-active listings ratio for January 2017 is 21 per cent. This is the lowest the ratio has been in the region since January 2015. Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12 per cent mark for a sustained period, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it surpasses 20 per cent over several months.

“Conditions within the market vary depending on property type. The townhome and condominium markets are more active than the detached market at the moment,” Morrison said. “As a result, detached home prices declined about 7 per cent since peaking in July while townhome and condominium prices held steady over this period.”


The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $896,000. This represents a 3.7 per cent decline over the past six months and a 0.2 per cent decrease compared to December 2016. 


Sales of detached properties in January 2017 reached 444, a decrease of 57.6 per cent from the 1,047 detached sales recorded in January 2016. The benchmark price for detached properties is $1,474,800. This represents a 6.6 per cent decline over the last six months and a 0.6 per cent decrease compared to December 2016.


Sales of apartment properties reached 825 in January 2017, a decrease of 24.7 per cent compared to the 1,096 sales in January 2016.The benchmark price of an apartment property is $512,300. This represents a 0.3 per cent increase over the last six months and a 0.4 per cent increase compared to December 2016.


Attached property sales in January 2017 totalled 254, a decrease of 32.4 per cent compared to the 376 sales in January 2016. The benchmark price of an attached unit is $666,500. This represents a 0.4 per cent decline over the last six months and a 0.7 per cent increase compared to December 2016.

 

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When is the best time to meet with a REALTOR® like me?


Chances are, you would say, “When I’m thinking of buying or selling a home.” You’d be right, of course! However, there are many other good reasons to meet with me. Here are just a few:


• You want a professional opinion as to the current value of your property, so you know what it would likely sell for in today’s market.


• You notice a home listed for sale in a desirable neighbourhood, and you’re interested in learning more — even if you’re unsure you want to make a move.


• You’re thinking of moving within the next couple of years, and you want to find a REALTOR® like me, that you can get to know and trust.


• You want some recommendations for preparing your home for sale ahead of time and especially determining what repairs and other work needs to be done and recommended proven and reputable contractors!

 

 

• You want an honest assessment as to the state of the local market, and the best time for you to buy or sell.


• You have real estate-related questions and you want to talk to an expert who knows the local market well and can provide you with answers.


• You have family that is considering buying or selling, or downsizing and you or they need some help with where to start!!!


As you can see, there’s a lot of value you can get from talking to me as your REALTOR®. I'm happy to answer any questions you may have, so please feel free to contact me!

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Housing demand remains strong despite diminishing supply...

Home sales reached near record levels in November even as home listings began the traditional year-end decline.


The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver reached 3,524 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in November 2015. This represents a 40.1 per cent increase compared to the 2,516 sales recorded in November 2014, and a 3.3 per cent decrease compared to the 3,646 sales in October 2015.


Last month’s sales were 46.2 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month and rank as the second highest November on record for residential property sales.

“November is typically one of the quietest months of the year in our housing market, but not this year,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “The ratio of sales to home’s available for sale reached 44 per cent in November, which is the highest it’s been in our market in nine years.”


New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 3,392 in November. This represents a 12.5 per cent increase compared to the 3,016 new listings reported in November 2014.  The total number of properties listed for sale on the real estate board’s MLS® is 8,096, a 35 per cent decline compared to November 2014 and a 15.4 per cent decline compared to October 2015.


“Demand remains strong and there are housing options at different price points throughout the region,” McLeod said. “It’s important to work with your REALTOR® to understand your options before you embark on your home buying journey.” 

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $752,500. This represents a 17.8 per cent increase compared to November 2014.


The sales-to-active-listings ratio in November was 43.5 per cent. Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio declines below the 12 per cent mark, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it reaches 20 per cent, or higher, in a particular community for a sustained period of time. 

Sales of detached properties in November 2015 reached 1,335, an increase of 31.9 per cent from the 1,012 detached sales recorded in November 2014, and a 44.2 per cent increase from the 926 units sold in November 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 22.6 per cent from November 2014 to $1,226,300. 


Sales of apartment properties reached 1,553 in November 2015, an increase of 47.6 per cent compared to the 1,052 sales in November 2014, and an increase of 60.3 per cent compared to the 969 sales in November 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 14 per cent from November 2014 to $435,000. 


Attached property sales in November 2015 totalled 636, an increase of 40.7 per cent compared to the 452 sales in November 2014, and a 49.3 per cent increase from the 426 attached properties sold in November 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 11.3 per cent between November 2014 and 2015 to $536,600.


*Editor’s Note:  Areas covered by Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver include: Whistler, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, Coquitlam, New Westminster, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and South Delta.


Courtesy of the Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board

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Metro Vancouver home buyers push October sales above long-term averages

Home buyers remain active across Metro Vancouver despite a reduced supply of homes for sale.


The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in *Metro Vancouver reached 3,646 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in October 2015. This represents a 19.3 per cent increase compared to the 3,057 sales recorded in October 2014, and a 9 per cent increase compared to the 3,345 sales in September 2015.


Last month’s sales were 36.2 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

“Home sales are more than one-third above what’s typical for this time of year yet the supply of homes for sale is the lowest we’ve seen in five years,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “This activity has created favourable market conditions for anyone considering selling their home today.” 


New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 4,126 in October. This represents an 8 per cent decline compared to the 4,487 new listings reported in October 2014.


The total number of properties listed for sale on the real estate board’s MLS® is 9,569, a 30 per cent decline compared to October 2014 and an 11.4 per cent decline compared to September 2015.


This is the lowest active listing total in Metro Vancouver since December 2010.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $736,000. This represents a 15.3 per cent increase compared to October 2014.


The sales-to-active-listings ratio in October was 38.1 per cent. Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio declines below the 12 per cent mark, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it reaches 20 per cent, or higher, in a particular community for a sustained period of time.


Sales of detached properties in October 2015 reached 1,437, an increase of 13.1 per cent from the 1,271 detached sales recorded in October 2014, and a 34.7 per cent increase from the 1,067 units sold in October 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 20.1 per cent from October 2014 to $1,197,600.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,543 in October 2015, an increase of 21.7 per cent compared to the 1,268 sales in October 2014, and an increase of 40.5 per cent compared to the 1,098 sales in October 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 11.4 per cent from October 2014 to $425,800.


Attached property sales in October 2015 totalled 666, an increase of 28.6 per cent compared to the 518 sales in October 2014, and a 34.3 per cent increase from the 496 attached properties sold in October 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 9.3 per cent between October 2014 and 2015 to $526,700.



Courtesy of the Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board

*Editor’s Note:  Areas covered by Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver include: Whistler, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, Coquitlam, New Westminster, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and South Delta.

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If you take care to price your home correctly — that is, at a price that is in line with what similar properties in the area have sold for recently — then you have a good chance of selling it at or near your asking price.  That doesn’t mean you won’t get a low-ball offer. You just might. So what do you do when that happens?


First, understand that the buyer may not necessarily be trying to steal away your home at a bargain-basement price. He might simply be mistaken about its true market value. Of course, he might also be coming in at a low price in the hopes he’ll get lucky.


You will never actually know the buyer’s motives. So it would be a mistake to get angry or dismiss the offer out-of-hand. That low-ball offer might end up being the beginning of a negotiation that results in you selling your home at a good price.


Your first step is to work with your REALTOR® to determine:
• How serious the buyer is.
• How qualified the buyer is. (For example, does he have a preapproved mortgage?)
• How amenable the buyer is to a counter-offer that reflects the true market value of your home.

• What that counter-offer should be.


This isn’t an easy process. It takes knowledge and experience to get it right.

Working with a good REALTOR® is essential.  Call me today if you're thinking of selling!

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You’ve no doubt noticed the occasional news report about a product being recalled for safety reasons. For example, a car model with a brake problem, or a children’s toy that, under some circumstances, may cause injury.


You may not know that these news reports are merely the tip of the iceberg.  For each product recall you hear about in the media, there are dozens that get little, if any, publicity.


That means there may be products in your home that have been recalled — and you don’t even know about it. It’s a scary thought.


How do you find out about recalled products that may affect you? Here are two tips.


1. Always complete the registration that comes with many products.  This is typically done by mailing in a registration card or filling out an online form. When you register, you’ll be alerted by the manufacturer if the product is recalled for any reason.


2. Both Canada and the United States have agencies that list recalled products on their websites. In Canada it’s the Healthy Canadians website at www.healthycanadians.gc.ca. In the United States it’s the Consumer Product Safety Commission at www.CPSP.gov. It’s a good habit to check these sites every season.


If you discover that a product in your home has been recalled, contact the manufacturer immediately. Never assume that the reason for the recall won’t apply to you.

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When you put your home up for sale, you want it to look its best to potential buyers. That’s why you clean, tidy and de-clutter every room.


Some sellers, however, miss the backyard. You need to pay just as much
attention to that space as you do to the interior of your home. The backyard
is as important a living space as the family room. To some buyers, even
more!


Buyers want to see an attractive backyard space, with the grass cut and the
hedges trimmed. The more neat and tidy you can make it, the better. If you can create an oasis, even better! 


Be sure to sweep walkways and wipe down patio furniture.  Also, watch out for the following things that buyers do not want to see:


• Bags of garage and other waste.
• Doggie do-do. (Be sure to stoop and scoop!)
• Rakes and other tools piled in the corner.
• Cluttered and disorganized or poorly maintained storage sheds, pool huts and other backyard structures.
• Weeds in the flower beds.
• Items stored underneath the deck.
• Hoses not stowed neatly.
• Electrical outlets and water faucets that don’t work.


These are not difficult issues to fix. Doing so will positively impact the impression the buyer gets of your backyard.


Do you have a backyard that shows particularly well in the summer? Here’s
a tip: Take pictures when things are in bloom and looking their best! Those photos will help buyers be able to appreciate how beautiful it looks in the summer, should you list your home in the winter.


Want more tips on making your home show well so that it sells fast? Call me, I'd be happy to help!

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Usually when you list your home, you would prefer to sell it quickly.  It’s likebeing the first one served at a crowded restaurant! It’s satisfying.  However, sometimes there’s more to it than that. There may be a truly urgent reason why you need to find a buyer for your property as soon as possible, such as a sudden job relocation.


If that’s the case, it’s important to explain your situation to your REALTOR®, who will be able to put together an action plan for selling your home quickly and for the best price possible.
During that conversation, ask what you can do to help the process along. For example, your realtor may be able to:


• Spread the word to your friends and other connections on Facebook.
• Canvass your neighbours and tell them about your listing and hand out flyers.
• Stage your home so that it’s more attractive to prospective buyers.


When it comes to price, be prepared to be flexible. That doesn’t mean you must settle for a price far below your home’s market value. However, you do need to be prepared to accept a good offer rather than try to hold out for a great one.


Also be open to as many viewings and open houses as possible. Having many prospective buyers come through your home within a short period of time may be a little inconvenient, but the payoff might be an offer!


Finally, work with your REALTOR®. A good REALTOR® (like myself :) will know the local market well and have many ideas for selling your property fast

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