August 2014

There are 13 blog entries for August 2014.

Summer is coming to an end and soon we’ll be seeing the changing colors of Autumn and the white wonderland of Winter. If your home is going to be on the market during these upcoming months, there are some things you should do to make your home more inviting and sellable.

The first thing you should do is immediately have photos taken of your home, even if it won’t be on the market right away. You want to advertise your home with Summer photos that show a green lawn and trees to create the best impression. Even if you don’t have outdoor space to photograph, interior photos will show the season through the windows and it’s best to have warm and green than cold and white.

I hire a professional real estate photographer to shoot the homes that are listed

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Buying a home for the first time is one of the biggest decisions and commitments most people will make. There can be a lot of pressure to buy because it seems that’s part of being an adult and what you should do. However, there are times when it makes more sense to rent, such as having a job that could have you moving within the next year or two or planning to go back to school. You need to be able to make a commitment as well as be financially ready. So how do you know when it’s right? Here are some points to consider before shopping for your first home.

You’ve created and manage a budget.
It’s critical to have good money management skills when you are a homeowner. You need to know where your money is going every month and take control of frivolous

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Selling real estate seems like a well-paying career that’s easy to get into. That’s the thought most people have when they consider getting a real estate license. Unfortunately, it’s far too easy for people to get into our industry and, before they realize how hard it is to actually make a living, they often damage the industry by cutting corners (often in an attempt to cut commissions) which results in poor attention to detail and terrible customer experiences.

When you go to buy or sell a home, interview no less than two agents to compare the services offered and the fees for the services they provide. You want to be sure you are working with a Realtor who is experienced, diligent, proactive, honest, and cares about your needs. Here’s a quick list of

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Buying a new home and moving can be an exciting time. It certainly can be stressful but we know that it’s going to be great when everything is done. However, there is a member of your family that doesn’t understand what is happening and all they see is upheaval. It’s your pet! There are things you can do, with a little planning ahead, that will ease the stress of moving for your pet and in turn for you, too. Here are a few things to add to your To-Do list.

Before Moving Day

  • Advise your veterinarian that you’ll be moving and have your pet chipped or have their chip updated with your new address. Update any tags on collars to your new address as well.
  • If you’re moving to a new city, get a copy of your pet’s medical records and ask your vet if he
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I remember getting into the real estate business and wondering how long it would take to learn, memorize and properly apply all of the terms that go along with standard purchases and financing agreements. Luckily, real estate is not medicine and we don’t have our own language! I thought it might be helpful to others to provide a quick reference of the 20 most commonly used (and commonly misunderstood) real estate terms. You may have heard some of these before or may hear them for the first time when you are buying or selling a house.

Rent Roll: A legend of renters (lease holders) with a brief description of start/end dates, type of lease, rent amount, and leaseholder renewal options if they exist.

Mortgage: A loan secured by real property. Unlike an

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Selecting the right price to ask for your home before going to market may be the most important decision sellers make next to what person they choose to represent them during the process.

Buyers will see your price BEFORE they see your home! Making it stand out on paper is important, but pricing a home too high will result in a long, drawn out, painful process leaving the seller asking tough questions about why the home isn’t selling or why they aren’t getting showings. But pricing the home too low may result in a sale that cost the seller thousands in unrealized equity due to having accepted an offer for far less than they could have realized if only they had priced the home right to begin with.

Understanding the real value of your home is the

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I’m always amazed at how every time I talk to my stock broker, he seems to be telling me that I should be buying stock. “The market is going up – buy stock!” “The market has dropped – it’s a good time to buy more stock”. It makes me feel a bit uncomfortable hearing this advice because clearly it can’t always be a good time to be a buyer – nor can it always be a good time to be a seller.

As a Realtor I’m often asked “How’s the real estate market?” A fair question and one I love to talk about. But before answering ‘good’ or ‘bad’ I find it more helpful to know if the person asking plans to buy, sell, or invest. The reason is because what I know of current market activity is almost always good for one person and bad for another. If the market is sluggish

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Should you buy a home first and then sell your house, or sell your home first and then buy a house? This is the classic real estate catch-22 that many people deal with when attempting to move their life and family, along with their equity from one home to another. There are some solutions that you should know about.

Either way is risky because if you buy before selling your existing home you run the risk of owning two homes for a while and double your monthly housing expenses for items like mortgage payments, property taxes, utilities, and maintenance/condo fees. This can wear on a persons’ psyche and your resources. This process will sometimes cause you to become more motivated to sell which may result in aggressive (perhaps ill-advised) price

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Who does the Realtor represent when working on a deal where one single agent represents both the buyer and seller?

Realtors have a responsibility to represent their clients to the best of their ability. I believe all Realtors truly want to do what’s best for their client; to get their buyer the best possible price terms and conditions for the home they want, and to achieve the same for their sellers. It is in fact our fiduciary responsibility and obligation. One that most agents take very seriously. Nobody intends to compromise the position of anyone, but often when a Realtor represents both sides on the same transaction someone (sometimes) feels like the other party got the benefit of the better advice from the agent, or perhaps feels like the other

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As an active agent in a busy Edmonton real estate market I’m often asked to provide home owners with the valuation of their home. I’m honored! Really, it’s an honor to be invited into someone’s home to provide an evaluation of value – something these folks will use to make monumental decisions concerning housing for their future and family.

Most have an opinion of value and hope for me to offer them the highest valuation possible, while others simply have no idea of value and trust that I’ll be accurate. But almost all people make the mistake of thinking that I (as the Realtor) am determining the value of their home. I don’t! As a Realtor I can offer an informed opinion of what I think the buyers will be willing to pay for a home like theirs at this

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