Vancouver weather is a factor When buying a home, it can be easy to overlook year-around weather issues. You may think you are purchasing a home in a sunny area, but come to find there is always a heavy cloud cover. This is just one of a number of weather issues to consider when selecting your dream home.
If you must have a sun deck in the Vancouver area as part of your new home, you better make sure it is going to be sunny! Just because a general geographic area has a lot of sun doesn't mean your home will. Things to look for include fog and heavy cloud cover for a home in a valley. If the home is located on the side of a hill or valley, make sure you know when it will get sun and shade. Vancouver weather temperatures can be radically different depending upon the amount of sun you get.
When it rains, it really pours! One potential nasty surprise for new homeowners can be the condition of a neighborhood after it rains. Even an inch of rain can flood streets to the point that you can't drive at all. Make sure you stop by a gas station or local store to ask about flooding problems in the area.
I have been known to enjoy the beach and spending time on the water and perhaps you do as well. I am pretty sure neither of us would enjoy it in our house. Still, millions of people a year buy homes in flood plains without even knowing it. Eventually, this can lead to a disaster when heavy rains come and you find out the reason they call it a flood plain.
Unlike streets with bad drainage, floods are much more damaging. When a river overflows, flood levels are typically measured in feet. Can you image the effect on your home of a flood that reaches five feet in depth? Well, you probably always wanted to renovate the first floor of your home.
Mother nature has a way of doing whatever she wants. Make sure you avoid her grumpy spells by looking into the effect of Vancouver weather on your prospective dream home.
1. Education & Experience Wіth ѕо muсh information readily аvаіlаblе online, clients ѕоmеtіmеѕ аѕk me, "Why ѕhоuld wе hire а real estate agent?" Thеу wonder, аnd rightfully so, іf thеу couldn't buy оr sell а home thrоugh thе Internet оr thrоugh regular marketing аnd advertising channels wіthоut representation, wіthоut а а real estate agent. Sоmе dо OK, mаnу don't. Sо іf you've wondered thе ѕаmе thing, hеrе аrе the 4 other reasons whу уоu mіght wаnt tо соnѕіdеr hiring а professional real estate marketing service.
'Go Fish' (formerly BIN 942) Prime Restaurant Location Business For Sale at 1521 BROADWAY W in VANCOUVER, BC Canada. Well Established Restaurant with a 50 seat Food Primery License in a prime Vancouver location at Granville and Broadway. Great opportunity to carry on as 'Go Fish' or start a new project.
$225,000 - 1521 BROADWAY West VANCOUVER (Vancouver West, Fairview VW) V6H 3G6
Congratulations to everyone in our Vancouver group of offices. We are #1 in the World once again with over $3.6 Billion in Sales!
I keep going back and I can't get enough! This is not your regular pub fare and Owner/Chef Dale MacKay, winner of Canada's Next Top Chef, has hit a home run with the food. 'Ensemble Tap' is Chef MacKay's sister restaurant to his more up- scale restaurant 'Ensemble'. I won't list off everything that I enjoyed on this menu because I love the entire menu. I have been back 5 times in the last few months and I can't wait to go back again all because of the great food quality and flavours. Here are a few of my and my guest's favorite dishes. We both agreed that Ensemble Tap has the best Chicken Wings in the city and we have been looking for a very long time! We like the 'hot" wings with fresh cucumber pickles and ranch ($12). Another top choice is the Award-Winning Pulled Pork Sandwich (From Top Chef Canada) with Apple-Horseradish Slaw, BBQ Beans and Fries ($13). We also sampled the Crispy Chicken Burger with Bacon ($14), Mussels and Fries in a Thai Curry Broth ($18) and Crispy Braised Ribs with BBQ-Spiced Rub ($15). I really could go on! This restaurant should be on everyone's list to visit and I encourage everyone to check it out.
Location:990 Smith Street, Vancouver - (604) 566-9770
This red wine is from the Elqui Valley region of Chile and made with 100% dried grapes. The Falernia winery is Chile's nothernmost wine estate. This wine is priced at $17.99 and has a herbal edge that carries on the palate, with a certain leathery note with delicious chocolaty notes and a touch of sweetness. This Carmenere pairs well with rich dishes including Lamb Shank, Steak, Spaghetti Bolognese and of course great with chocolate for desert.
Staging a home for sale means just that...setting the stage so that your home may sell faster and often times closer to the listing price than if it were not staged. Here are 10 Easy Ideas You Can Use
Staging allows the home to be presented as a canvas and allow the buyer to paint a picture for them; visualizing what the space will look like if they moved in with their items. But that does not mean showing an empty home; rather staging accentuates spaces within the home by creating vignettes, which enhance positive space while downplaying negative areas within the house. I currently have a listing in Steveston, Richmond BC, Canada, and my clients have done an amazing job staging there home. It has created nothing but positive feed back about the condo along with showing its value. Take a look: http://302-6233londonroad.com/
You could hire a professional stager for about $400 for a consultation and then shell out thousands for the stager to do the packing and the redecorating, OR you can do it yourself, keep the savings and put it into staging the home if you do-it-yourself.
In order to create the staging scene, understand that for the next 30-90 days, while the house is for sale, you will need to have removed personal items, collections and clutter, (and keep them 'gone' until you have a signed contract). Your home may lose its personal style and warmth, but that will be one of the small sacrifices you will need to make to maximize profit from the sale of your house.
Staging will require some planning as you will pack away items, which you may have kept handy just for the sake of a convenience (i.e., refrigerator door space used as a bulletin board for 'to-do lists,' coupons, family photos and calendars, etc.) or items which may have been left plugged (indefinitely) into electrical outlets for convenience, such a shavers and hair dryers in the bathroom; all of which add clutter to the home.
If you stage your home for sale on your own, here are 10 easy tips to remember:
1) Make a list of all the spaces, choose one room at a time and tackle each individually. You will be overwhelmed if you choose to do 'the whole house' in one afternoon. Start with the bathroom(s) and the kitchen and then move to the common rooms and finally the bedrooms. Basements, hallways and attics are last. Check off each room on your list as you go helping to make you feel as if you have made some accomplishment. Understand that packing up clutter is 'work' and it is time-consuming (that is why there is a $100 an hour price tag on the hiring a professional), but remember always that the savings outweighs the hard work. By all means, ask family members to pitch-in. Even children can pack away their toys and older children can clean a dirty shower. Plug in the Ipod or put on a CD to help the time pass a little more pleasantly.
2) Evaluate the colors of each room individually. Pastel colors do not sell well. Baby blue and princess pink are often gender-inspired colors, which are a huge turn-off for potential buyers. Even if the buyers have children and will use the baby blue room for their own baby, they may or may not like that particular shade or, in fact may wish to use yellow or green, often considered colors, which can traditionally be used for both boys and girls. Play it safe and simply paint over the pastels with a neutral color like beige or off-white. Any wallpaper should be removed or painted over if possible.
3) Go to your neighborhood grocery store and ask them for empty boxes from produce as these usually have side cut-outs for easy grabbing. Start storing empty boxes in a place for easy access a few weeks before you begin to stage. You will need the boxes and having them handy will keep the packing momentum moving along.
4) As you go from room to room, remove family pictures from the walls and replace them with used art from a thrift store or simply purchase framed prints from a local dollar store. Pack away all collections including children's Hot Wheels, baseball cap collections and any other really personal collections you and your family may be fond of. You may leave out neutral items for decorating such as pricey crystal, Lladro, colorful depression glassware to fill in those spaces left behind when the spoon collections, baseball card collections and Formula 1 car collections come off the fireplace mantle and shelves. This may be 'painful' but consider that in 30-90 days you will be able to unpack these items in your new home and enjoy them again.
5) Consider at this point whether you will need to rent storage space or whether a neighbor or a friend will allow you to store these items in their home as filled boxes will accumulate quickly. A new storage idea has streamlined storage space in recent years, whereas you rent a container or a pod and store the items in this portable space for as long as you need to. If you should rent this container space, do not store the entire container on your own property. Ask a friend or a neighbor if you can store it there or ask the container company if you can store at their own facility. You do not want to make your home look like a warehouse. Also, do not consider storing any packed items in a spare bedroom or in the basement of your own home as you would simply be de-cluttering one room and cluttering another. All rooms should be clear of storage boxes, afterall you are selling a home and not a storage space.
6) Clean, clean, clean....particularly bathrooms and kitchens. No home will sell especially well with grit, mold, dirty tiles and floors. For as much as you will stage each room, the buyers' eyes will focus on the dirt and not on the hard work you put into staging. People remember dirt and grime and it would only remind them how much more work they would have to do when they moved in themselves. If you need to re-grout a dirty tub, then you will need to make that effort.
7) Buyers make a determination of a home within 20 seconds of walking through the front door. Make that experience memorable within that short period of time. If you have an entryway, set up a table, a small attractive bowl of expensive mints and add some flowers.
If you have an entryway, open all the doors off the entry to make the space appear larger and brighter.
8) Go from room-to-room and pack- up clutter. Leave a small basket under the counter or in a closet with items you will need to use while you are still living there. The only items on a bathroom counter should be a small bouquet of flowers, a bar of clean decorative soap in a clean soap dish and a clean hand towel. Toothbrushes, toothpaste, shaving cream, medications and hair products should all be packed away under the counters or in places, which are not noticeable.
9) Go to the supermarket and purchase an inexpensive bouquet of either daisies or carnations. You get many more flowers to work with in these arrangements than you would if you opted to spend money on roses or more expensive flowers. Arrange the flowers in whiskey snifters, small vases, or, if you do not have either take a better drinking glass from your kitchen, tie a small ribbon around the base and fill that with water and a few daisies. Use these arrangements randomly around the home but be sure to place at least one in each room. Change flowers as needed but the daisies and carnations seem to last a long time even if you forget to add more water! Dying flowers MUST be thrown out immediately; they make bad impression to visitors to your home.
10) Move out the bulky furniture and create little seating venues in your home with small tables and chairs. For example, you normally have a large sectional in your TV room with a cocktail table and two side tables...however, you may also have a large window facing the backyard that is blocked by the sectional. Remove pieces of the sectional to make the space appear larger. Place the cocktail table and one end table near the sectional. Find two chairs, which do not always have to match and place the other end table in front of the window with the 2nd end table in between the chairs. Add your bouquet of flowers, a small lamp and you have another seating area in the room. Pull your curtains away from the window, tie back with decorative rope or ribbon and let the light shine in the room. Add a bowl of lemons (I also like to use colored peppers) to the cocktail table for added color. Find two pillows that DO match and place them on the chairs in front of the window to tie the room together. If you do not have matching pillows, take two unmatching pillows and wrap matching pillow cases around the pills and knot in the center with a piece of ribbon. This is an easy formula to pull together a room which works in every bedroom and common area in the home.
Remember investors have a keen eye and following these staging tips will only help sell your home!
Please leave me your comments and suggestions and for a great example of a job well done staging a home take a look at what my clients did with their Richmond Condo: http://302-6233londonroad.com/
Becoming a successful real estate investor requires being able to find good real estate investment deals and put them together. Your job is not to become an closing attorney, a management expert, or a repair person. Use professionals!
You must learn how to appraise and find the true value of real estate this information will help you make better investment decisions. Realtors, appraisers, and banks determine what a property is worth by looking at comparable sales usually three to five sales of similar property that has recently sold in the same neighborhood. You must be able to do the same.
Getting a list of comparable prices of properties bought or sold (and when it sold) for the neighborhood you need information about, and asking active real estate investors in your area what the market is like will be helpful and making a better investment decision. What is the ideal market for investing?
There is no such thing as an ideal real estate market for investing. It tends to be more difficult to find bargains in rising markets if the market keeps rising the probability of selling the property quickly for a large profit increases. In contrast but when property values are falling more bargains become available.
You need to be able to assess the true value of properties based on when you expect to sell. Your purchase must be made at a good enough discount to allow for a profitable sale at a later date.
Leverage is very important for investors because the less cash you put down on each property the more properties you can buy. If the properties go up in value your rate of return goes up. However if the properties go down in value and you have a lot of debt on the property this can result in negative cash flow.
Since real estate is generally cyclical negative cash flow is only a short-term problem and can be handled if you have other income or a cash reserves. This makes "Nothing down" investing very helpful to protect against negative cash flow for high leverage investor.
If you are a long term real estate investor leverage will work in your favor if the markets in which you invest appreciate in the long run and your income from the properties can pay for most of your monthly debt.
Strategies to limit risk
To limit risk become educated in your local real estate market first by understanding the large scale trends from global down to national regional and specific neighborhoods. Learn about target neighborhoods with the help of successful real estate investors in your area along the way.
Real estate investors can help you interpret market indicators such as the average length of time houses have been on the market this month versus last month or last year. With this information it will help you make better investment decisions.
It is important not to guess the future of a local real estate market you need to have a clear plan in mind when purchasing property. As a real estate investor you must know exactly how you will exit the property before you buy. And have a backup plan or two in case the first course of action doesn't work. You must know your market and your plan before you begin to invest. For more helpful information and online real estate go to http://vancouvercanadahomes.com
With oil and natural gas prices rocketing, stoking terror of long, cold and and expensive winters, a renewed interest in keeping heating costs under control has has been sparked. Homeowner's have an ignited passion in understanding energy saving methods. If you're in this boat, stuck in cold waters, here are some tips for energy saving tricks of the trade.
If you're living in a home with a furnace that's more than 20 years old, you may have already attempted the "buy a sweater" method of keeping warm. This is certainly one approach, but these days upgrading your home's conditioning system is a much better option, and will bode well for you in the here and now, and in the long term, should you decide sell your home. More and more, homebuyers are looking for homes with energy efficient systems already in place. So, think of these upgrades as a long term investment in the resale value of your home, as well a cost efficient and green alternative to your current conditioning system.
Now, with that old choker of a furnace huffin' and puffin' away, guaranteed it's not as efficient as it could be, no matter what fuel type it uses. The newer gas furnaces are mid-efficiency (78-82%) or high efficiency (89-96%). Although the higher efficiency products can cost up to $1000 more than the mid-efficiency products, extra costs will be re-couped in a couple years, as they will burn less fuel. And, you'll be the greenest frog on the block, sending less harmful emissions out into the atmosphere. "It's so easy being green", murmured Kermit, once he upgraded his furnace.
With oil furnaces, there are again, much more efficient products on the market as of late. But, a oil furnace does need to partner with a good chimney, and so this may be an additional cost to keep in mind
Take note, it's still the case that electric heat is more expensive than oil and gas, although a smart combination of central woodstove heat, supplemented by electric heat can be cost efficient.
Let it Flow: Change Your Filters!
Whether disposable or washable, all forced-air heating/cooling systems use filters. And, these filters need to be maintained and changed. Some filters require monthly changes while other last up to three months, and much depends on the conditions within your home. A dirty filter will restrict air flow and with clogged filters you're blocking heat that would otherwise be keeping you toasty warm. Do yourself a favor and keep on top of the regular changing of your heat filters. This is a pretty easy way to boost your energy efficiency and cut costs.
Pump it up: Install a Heat Pump
Air source heat pumps are the most common and they are generally used with a back-up heating system. In terms of function a heat pump works by extracting heat from the outside and bringing it in, (in heat mode), and by removing heat from the inside of the house and releasing it outside. ( in cooling mode).
The king of heat pumps, though, are ground and watersource, or geothermal. And while the initial investment may be great, the saving will be substantial in the long run. These pumps will use 25-50% less energy than conventional conditioning systems.
At the end of the day, another simple method to help with soaring heat bills, is to keep an eye on the set temperature levels in your house, What is normally described as room temperature is around 68 Fahrenheit (20 degrees celsius). Of course, only you can decide where to set the dial. But, if you'd rather avoid the " put on a sweater" method of winter energy conservation, you might consider investing in an improved conditioning system that'll bring you warmth today, and will be a smart investment in the re-sale value of your home.
These are my personal tips that you should consider when buying a property.
1) Research is the key
Always do research. You can never do enough research. A lot of people dive into the property market head first and blind folded, and that’s when people make bad purchases. If you like a property, find out about the surrounding area; find out the local crime rate, find out how much properties in the area recently sold for. Find out EVERYTHING. There are tonnes of websites out there that will give you all these details at no cost. Start with my website http://vancouvercanadahomes.com
2) Prepare yourself financially
Financially prepare yourself before you make any offers- get financially sorted. Make sure you can afford the property. Make sure you have taken every cost into consideration, like conveyancing solicitors, stamp duty, survery fees, Real Estate Agent fees etc. Most importantly, make sure you can get the financial backing you need.
3) Structural Survey
Always get a structural survey or inspection done. With the newer homes, the basic or mid-ranged survey is fine. But with older properties, definitely get the higher-level inspection. Sure this may add expenses onto your limited budget, but it could potentially save you thousands. Regardless, most Mortgage lenders will insist on a structural survey and inspection, as they won’t want to help you finance a house that’s about to fall apart.
4) Property fittings
Make sure you ask what comes with the property before you make an offer. A lot of houses are presented beautifully, especially with fitted bathrooms and kitchens. You may get a nasty shock when you move in only to find the previous owners took the fittings with them.
5) Stay away from the asking price
Never offer the asking price, unless it is known that you are in a competing offer situation, even if you’re in love with a particular property. Sellers/ Real Estate Agents usually add on a few thousand pounds from the actual value of the property, because they expect offers to always be below asking price. Be risky, and make a cheeky offer- you maybe surprised.
6) The Property Market
Find out how long a property has been on the market for from your Vancouver REALTOR®. If a property you’re in love with has been on the market for a long period of time, ask yourself why; be suspicious. If the property is legit, and for some odd reason it’s not selling, then make a low offer.
7) Control your emotions
Never act overly keen to either the seller or your Real Estate Agent. The REALTOR® and seller both have one thing in common- they want the buyer to spend as much as possible. Remember, the Real Estate Agent is working for the seller, not the buyer. If you act overly keen, they will make you spend more money than necessary. Buying property is like playing a game of poker- you need to play the game with a face of stone.
8.) Be patient
Don’t let your patience get the better of you. Never rush into buying a property; buying a house is a big deal and will effect your life. There is an art to buying property, and patience is a big part of it. Impatience leads to expensive and inadequate purchases. If your patience is the direct reason of losing out on a deal, don’t worry, properties come and go on the market. On the other hand, your impatience could be the direct reason of making a bad purchase, and consequently throwing your money down the drain.
9) The future is important
Think about the unforeseeable future. The property market is a very uncertain area. Interest rates can increase at any time, and that will have direct impact on your monthly mortgage repayments. You may be out of work for a period of time, would you still be able to afford the monthly mortgage payments?
10) An empty property looks so much different
Imagine the property is empty- do not be fooled by props a seller has strategically planned. Once a house is stripped from all it’s wrapping, you maybe surprised how different it looks. Check behind and under the furniture, because you never know what surprises maybe hidden away- peeling wallpaper, stained carpets etc.
11) Don’t forget your neigbourhood
Are you looking for a peaceful area? Remember, an Real Estate Agent is working with the seller to get a maximum sale value- they will arrange viewings at optimum times. When you view a property, the surrounding area may be quiet and peaceful. Consider what the noise maybe like at times you haven’t been there.
12) Damp properties
Smell for dampness. Touch the walls; feel if they’re damp. Always be suspicious if a home is overly heated and sprayed with overpowering fragrances.
13) The roof can be costly to fix
Check the tiles on the roof. A lot of people neglect the roof when inspecting a house, and that’s exactly where a lot of people have to shell out a lot of expenses. This especially applies to older properties.
14) Location is just as important as the property
Finding the dream house is always great. But what about your dream location? Does it contain all your essentials, like a local groceries, schools etc. Don’t just focus on the property; focus on the bigger picture. Make sure the local area is equipped for your requirements.
15) Shop around for property
You can never find the right property after one viewing; even if you think otherwise. Make sure you take your time looking at several difference properties. Don’t just look in one area, be a little open minded and open yourself to possibilities. You’ll get a better idea of what your hard earned cash can actually get you.