When you're having a garage sale, one of the toughest tasks is pricing your items. If you put a price tag on your old golf clubs that’s too high, no one will buy them. If you make the price too low, they might sell quickly, but you’ll spend the rest of the day wondering if you could have gotten more!
It's similar to selling your home — except with your home, the stakes are much higher.
You want to price your property to sell, but you don’t want to leave any money on the table.
How do you accomplish that?
Setting the right list price for your home requires a combination of skilled calculation and industry savvy.
Let's start with the "calculation" part...
When you work with me, I'll review recently sold properties that are similar to yours in type, size, features and location. Then, using that data, we’ll calculate a range that represents your property's "current market value."
For example, consider a spacious 15-year-old bungalow in a nice neighbourhood. If similar homes in the area have sold for $475,000- $550,000 in the last six months, then it's obvious that your home should sell in that range too. A list price above or below that range would be in the danger zone.
But skilled calculation is only half the task.
Setting your list price also requires expertise in the local market, combined with good old-fashioned gut instinct. That instinct comes from being on the front lines of many property transactions.
That's why working with a good real estate salesperson is so important, when you’re deciding on the list price for your home.
Real Estate Resale Market Update for January 2018:
The market in different areas behaved very differently. Some of the neighbourhoods saw multiple offers and the prices were high compared to other neighbourhoods. The buyers are definately out now to buy the homes. So if you need market status on your street or in your neighbourhood, please feel free to send me a text or email.
Toronto Real Estate Board President Tim Syrianos announced that Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® reported 4,019 residential transactions through TREB's MLS® System in January 2018. This result was down by 22 per cent compared to a record 5,155 sales reported in January 2017.
The number of new listings entered into TREB's MLS® System amounted to 8,585 – a 17.4 per cent increase compared to 7,314 new listings entered in January 2017. However, it is important to note that the level of new listings was the second lowest for the month of January in the past 10 years.
"TREB released its outlook for 2018 on January 30th. The outlook pointed to a slower start to 2018, especially compared to the record-setting pace experienced a year ago. As we move through the year, expect the pace of home sales to pick up, as the psychological impact of the Fair Housing Plan starts to wane and home buyers find their footing relative to the new OSFImandated stress test for mortgage approvals through federally regulated lenders," said Mr. Syrianos.
The MLS® Home Price Index Composite Benchmark was up by 5.2 per cent year-over-year. This annual rate of growth was driven by the condominium apartment market segment, with doubledigit annual growth versus the single-family segment, with prices essentially flat compared to last year. The overall average selling price was down by 4.1 per cent year-over-year to $736,783. This decline was weighted toward the detached segment of the market. In the City of Toronto, the average selling price was up for all home types except for detached houses.
"It is not surprising that home prices in some market segments were flat to down in January compared to last year. At this time last year, we were in the midst of a housing price spike driven by exceptionally low inventory in the marketplace. It is likely that market conditions will support a return to positive price growth for many home types in the second half of 2018. The condominium apartment segment will be the driver of this price growth," said Jason Mercer, TREB's Director of Market Analysis.
You don’t have to freeze in the winter or start reading by candlelight to reduce your electricity bill. There are many simple ways to use less power with little, if any, impact on your lifestyle.
A good place to start is with your electronics.
According to the David Suzuki Foundation, “Any gizmo that has a clock, digital timer, remote control or standby mode is sucking energy when it's not being used (it's called 'phantom electricity' — and it's scary how much of it there is).” So keep them unplugged as much as possible. Also, unplug charger cords for phone and computers when not in use. Even when not connected to the device, they still suck power.
Another easy change to make involves your lights. Switching to compact fluorescent (CFL) or LED light bulbs can save you a lot of energy. They’re 75% more efficient.
Finally, the old-fashioned method of insulating doors and windows can work wonders for lowering your electricity bill. In fact, some particularly drafty homes can lose up to 40% of their heat. Check for drafts regularly and repair or replace insulation as needed.
None of these ideas will impact your day-to-day living. Yet, they could potentially save you a bundle.
Property Surveyors, sometimes referred to as land Surveyors, play a vital role in the real estate world. They are the professionals who determine or confirm the exact boundaries of a property.
Will you need to deal with a Property Surveyor when selling your home? You might.
Sometimes the mortgage lender will ask for a land survey, especially if your property is older and hasn’t changed hands in many years. You might also be asked for one by the buyer if there is any confusion about the size and boundaries of your property – or if significant changes have been made to it in recent years.
This is nothing to be concerned about.
A qualified Property Surveyor will do the appropriate inspection and measurements on your property and issue you the survey. (It looks a little like a blueprint.)
Property Surveyors are highly trained and licensed. In the United States, the profession is represented by the National Society of Professional Surveyors, with each state having its own governing body. In Canada, Professional Surveyors Canada (PSC) represents the profession nationally, and most provinces have their own professional associations.
Before getting a new land survey, make sure you don’t already have one. Hopefully, you’ve stored the paperwork that relates to the purchase of your home. Look through it. A valid land survey might be right there.
If you have questions about land surveys, call today.
With so many young adults now living in condos, it’s not surprising that a growing number of them are considering staying in a condominium community, even as they start building a family. So, if you want To improve the over all market potential of your building’s individual units, consider how your condo group might address the needs and preferences of this growing sector of buyers. Of course, even though you can’t change the size of individual units or balconies, you can encourage your condo board to look into repurposing some aspects of your building’s common spaces. For example, young parents who don’t drive may be attracted to a condo that dedicates some of its parking area to a compound for strollers and bicycles.
Your board might even seek out nearby buildings to arrange shared space that can be dedicated to providing swimming lessons or daycare, or create a playground or parkland. Smart planning should also include approaching municipal authorities to determine population projections that might warrant expanding a local school.
No one wants to deal with a burglary. How do you reduce the chances of one happening?
Fortunately, burglaries are a well-studied phenomenon — especially by law enforcement. These studies have identified specific things you can do to cut the risk dramatically. Here are some ideas:
• 34% of home break-ins occur through the front door. Experts recommend investing in a door with a top-quality locking mechanism. (The best are those that lock at three points of contact.)
• 50% of burglars will be deterred if your home has some sort of video monitoring system. A thief doesn’t want his face on YouTube!
• Unfortunately, signs and window stickers warning of an alarm system do not deter thieves. However, 62% of burglars will immediately run away when an alarm goes off. Always turn on your alarm system when you’re not home!
• 22% of burglaries occur through a sliding glass door or patio door. Make sure it’s locked and also use a solid metal jammer.
• Some thieves use frequency scanners to gain access to garages. Police recommend changing your remote entry code regularly and putting blinds or curtains on garage windows so thieves can’t see (and be tempted by) any valuables inside.
As you can see, there are many simple things you can do to reduce your chances of a burglary dramatically. The effort is worth it.
Should You Move or Renovate? Three Things to Consider
Determining if you should buy a new home or fix up your current one isn’t easy. In fact, the decision can be steeped in so much drama they make reality TV shows about it! So if you’re considering whether to move or improve, here are three things to consider.
1. Will a renovation truly fix what you don’t like about your property?
If you’re tired of a small kitchen, for example, it might not be possible, given the layout, to make it any bigger. On the other hand, if you’re craving a spacious rec room with a cosy fireplace then a renovation could make that happen.
Of course, there are some things you may want that aren’t specific to your house, such as an easier commute or nearby park. Those are features you may only be able to get by moving.
2. How much will a renovation cost? How does that compare to the cost of moving to a new home?
It’s important to get accurate estimates of each so you can make a smart decision. This is where a good REALTOR® can help.
Keep in mind that renovations have a habit of costing more than you originally anticipate. As mentioned earlier, the final result should be a home you want to stay in for quite some time.
3. Beware of compromising versus settling.
Whichever decision you make — renovate or sell — you can expect to have to make at least some compromises. That’s normal.
For example, consider adding an extension to your house. That’s a major renovation. Is it the ideal way to get the extra room you want? Do the benefits of renovating outweigh the benefits of finding a new larger home designed to include the space you need?
Yes, it’s a tough decision. If you’re in the midst of making it, call today, to get the facts you need to make the best choice for you.