Mid-Island Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find my blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings and travel and home decor to recipes. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. I’d love to talk with you!

Jan. 22, 2021

11-606 Farrell Road, Ladysmith, BC

Congratulations to my Buyer!!

Posted in Real Estate
Jan. 22, 2021

From Decorating to Staging

There is a difference between the two—here’s how to get your home ready to sell. Once you’ve decided to put your home on the market, you’re looking to sell quickly for the best possible price. One tactic that can help sell your home faster is staging.

At first, staging may seem like a real estate term that doesn’t actually mean anything. Isn’t staging just decorating? Well, not exactly …

Appeal to the masses

Your home is likely decorated to your tastes. It could be colorful and eclectic, or rugged and industrial. But when you’re staging your home, rather than appealing to a specific decorating sense, you want to furnish your home in a way that appeals to everyone—and more importantly, doesn’t turn anyone off who just isn’t into your personal style.

Tone down the personal flourishes

Buyers want to be able see themselves in a home and imagine how they’d make it their own. Unfortunately, that means less of your own style as you’re preparing for your move. Cut down on family photos, bold artwork, and unusual furniture. Do some major decluttering so the buyer can see all the space and storage opportunities. It may be sad to start removing the items that make your house a home, but it’s an important part of the process.

Mass appeal doesn’t mean “boring”

Your staged home can still be colorful, just stay away from extremes. If you paint, stick to whites, grays, or neutrals. Add flourishes of color with window treatments or accent furniture, but try to choose items that will appeal to both genders.

Call a pro

There are likely several staging companies in your area. If you need a recommendation, reach out to your trusted real estate professional.

Posted in Home Decor, Real Estate
Jan. 15, 2021

What Affects Property Values?

Some the features that increase property values are obvious—like a remodeled bathroom, a modern kitchen, or a sought-after neighborhood. But here are a few features and circumstances you have not have realized can affect property values.

  1. The neighbors: Not every neighborhood or community has an HOA that can keep the neighbors from going overboard with decorations or neglecting to care for their home. Homes adjacent to crazy neighbors can potentially be undervalued.
  2. Trendy groceries and coffee: Recent statistics suggest that if your home is a short walk from popular grocery stores like Whole Foods or coffee chains like Starbucks, it can actually appreciate faster than the national average.
  3. Mature trees: A big beautiful tree in the front yard is enviable, and it’s not something that can be easily added to any home. Homes with mature trees tend to get a little boost in value.
  4. Parking: This isn’t too much of an issue if you live in the suburbs or in a rural area, but residents in dense cities can have real problems with parking, and homeowners might need to rent a spot just to guarantee a place to park each night. That’s why having guaranteed parking in urban areas will raise property values.
  5. The front entrance: First impressions matter to buyers—many will cross a home off their list within 10 seconds of stepping through the front door. An appealing front door, a friendly entryway, and a functioning doorbell are all necessities for getting top dollar.
Posted in Real Estate
Jan. 13, 2021

Real Estate Now Magazine Jan/Feb 2021

 

 

 

 

Posted in Real Estate
Jan. 8, 2021

Avoid These Two Big Mortgage Mistakes

We all know that searching for and viewing potential homes is the fun part of the home-buying process. The not-so-fun part? The mortgage.

But if you don’t pay attention to the details, your mortgage can end up dragging down the enjoyment of your new home and cause some major regrets. Here are a few mistakes to avoid to ensure that you love your mortgage terms as much as your hew home.

Don’t find your home first: Shopping around for the best mortgage rate should be the first step in the home buying process. You may even want to talk to a mortgage broker a full year before you plan to buy. It’ll give you time to get your affairs in order to qualify for the best rate, could save you thousands of dollars in the long run, and you won’t feel rushed to accept an unattractive loan because you’re worried you’ll miss out on your dream home.

Don’t forget your real budget: There’s often a big difference between what a lender says you can afford and what you can actually afford. Your debt-to-income ratio doesn’t include the money you spend on hobbies, or the cost of commuting to work, or maintenance and utility costs.

Really sit down and examine your spending before committing to the loan amount the lender is offering. You won’t enjoy your home nearly as much if it’s eating into your favorite hobbies.

Posted in Real Estate
Jan. 4, 2021

2021 RDN Proposed Tax Hikes

It's that time of year again... to see the complete list of proposed RDN tax increases and decreases, click here!

Posted in Real Estate
Jan. 4, 2021

Create Your Dream Man Cave

Sometimes, the man or men of the house just need a little space to d their thing. That's why, if your home layout allows, a man cave is a great addition. Now that you have the space picked out, how should you fill it? Check out these tips to get you started!

  1. Mini fridge and bar. Every good man cave ha a stockpile of drinks and food. Purchase a mini a fridge and fill it with your favourite alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverages. Then, don't forget to fill a basket with easy-to-grab snacks.
  2. Ample seating. You'll likely be spending a large chunk of time in your man cave watching tv, relaxing, playing games and more, so choosing the right couch or recliners is crucial. Plus, if you plan to have the guys over, you'll want to make sure you choose furniture that can seat everyone comfortably and have back-up folding chairs in case you need more spots.
  3. Favourite decor. Whether you're a big movie buff, die-hard sports fan, or dedicated concert goer, your man cave is the perfect place to let your interests shine by displaying your favourite memorabilia, posters, jerseys and more.
  4. TV. The centerpiece of your man cave is your TV. You should purchase one that is large enough to see clearly from any spot in the room and comes equipped with streaming services to ensure you can catch the game or newest movie release with a click of a button.
  5. Games. Video games, card games, board games and more. Fill your man cave with all your favourites to keep you and your guests entertained with some friendly competition.
Posted in Home Decor
Dec. 28, 2020

7 Morgan Place, Nanaimo

Posted in Real Estate
Dec. 23, 2020

Wonder Walls

An Artful Ibizan Estate with Personality

WRITTEN BY VICTORIA HITTNER  PHOTOGRAPHY BY GEOFF FENNEY

The Ibizan finca, or traditional farmhouse, is often characterized by locally sourced materials and a fluid blueprint that adapts to the needs of its inhabitants. When designer Ed Godrich was asked by longtime friends and clients to renovate a finca they had recently purchased in the hills of the Spanish island, he created a design in line with this rich tradition.

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Posted in Home Decor
Dec. 18, 2020

Wining, Dining and Cruising

Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri

WRITTEN BY HEIDI SIEFKAS

Nestled in the Ozark Mountains of south-central Missouri is a world-class boating, golfing, shopping, and fishing mecca. The Lake of the Ozarks—with more miles of coastline than California’s ocean beaches—is the Midwest’s premier lake resort. Only a couple hours from St. Louis, Jefferson City, and Branson, the “Fun Lake” is known as one of the best places to own a second home. Why is this area of the Show-Me state so special? It won’t take long to see why.

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Posted in Travel