Free Properties in White Rock, BC?

Only 100 years too late !!  When I finish building my time machine, I’m going back to 1911 to take part in this deal!! Check it out!

Fall & Winter Maintenance Suggestions

Fall is the perfect time to get your home ready for the coming winter, which can be the most gruelling season for your home. During winter months, it’s important to follow routine maintenance procedures, by checking your home carefully for any problems that may arise and taking corrective action as soon as possible.  Fall Check fireplace and chimney; service or clean if needed Clean range hood filter Clean leaves out of eavestroughs Check roofing and flashing for signs of wear or damage Close outside hose connection Close windows, skylights Check weather-stripping around doors and windows Clean and reactivate heat recovery ventilator, if it was turned off Winterize landscaping Test space heating system Close vents to crawl spaces Test your smoke alarms; change the batteries at least once a year Winter Clean or replace furnace filter Check/clean heat recovery ventilator; wash or replace filter Clean humidifier and turn it on if needed Check exhaust fans Ensure that air intake, exhausts and meters are clear of snow Clean range hood filter Check basement floor drain Do safety checks: fire escape routes; fire extinguishers; door and window locks Ensure gas valve is clear of ice and snow Annually Dust or vacuum electric baseboards Vacuum ducts behind warm air and return air grilles Test plumbing shut-off valves to ensure they’re working Test pressure relief valve on hot water tank; drain water from tank Check and, if needed, oil door hinges Lubricate garage door motor, chain, etc Check attic for signs of moisture in summer or fall Check septic system; clean if needed (usually about every three years) Every Two to Five Years Check and repair driveway cracks Check and repair the chimney cap and the caulking between the cap and chimney, re-caulk as necessary Refinish wood surfaces, including window frames and doors  

Top Ten House Staging Tips to Help You get More for your Home When You Sell it.

Thinking about selling your house?  Taking a bit of extra time to consider the following suggestions can definitely help make a better first impression and help your home stand out from the others. Here’s the top 10 home staging suggestions, as recommended by professional home stagers: 1. Keep it clean Look at your home as though you’re seeing it for the first time. Is every room neat, spotlessly clean, dusted and uncluttered? Steam clean carpets and wax floors. Wash walls, heating and A/C vents and light fixtures. Pay special attention to your bathroom and kitchen – make sure that tile grout is mildew free and baseboards scrubbed. Clean the refrigerator and stove as well as the washer and dryer (inside and out). And, don’t forget about the windows! Make sure that all windowpanes, ledges and blinds are spick and span. 2. Lose the clutter Have a yard sale or take old furniture, clothing and knick-knacks to Goodwill. Organize shelves, put away items and purge your home of unnecessary items. Make sure that your kitchen and bathroom counters are free of small appliances and personal effects. 3. De-personalize your home Make your home “anonymous,” so that buyers can envision it as their potential home. Put away any family photos, sports trophies, collectibles, knick-knacks, and souvenirs. This will also help to remove clutter and create more space. 4. Freshen-up Adding a fresh coat of paint and laying new carpet will clean and brighten up your home. Choose neutral colors and make it consistent throughout the home. If you choose to wallpaper, make sure that the paper is properly applied, your color choice is neutral and patterns are kept to a minimum. 5. First impressions count Like a first date or job interview, the first impression of your home is the most important. …

Does the quality of photographs matter when trying to sell your home?

I find it interesting that so many Realtors don’t place a priority on the promotional materials used to feature the homes they are trying to sell. Especially considering that most home buyers are now being introduced to the home for the first time online – you’d think that quality photographs would be essential. When poor photographs are used to feature a property, many negative aspects can be perceived such as the home appearing much smaller and crowded than it really is (by using the wrong lenses), and much darker (by not knowing how to take proper exposures). Below are photographs of one of my listings – a side by side comparison of SOME photographs I’m using to market my current listing, vs a previous time this same house was marketed on the MLS with another Realtor. If you were selling your home, which would you prefer? When hiring a Realtor to market your home, make sure they are hiring a professional photographer to capture your home in the most favourable way.  Your home will stand out much better, and this is especially important when trying to sell your home in a very competitive market such as the one we’re dealing with right now in South Surrey / White Rock, BC.

How to decide if you should replace your windows

One of the most prominent features of any home is the windows. When they are well maintained they have a positive impact on the impression people (such as potential buyers) will have of your property. The opposite occurs, of course, when your windows look old and worn. So does that mean you should replace your windows? That depends on a number of factors. Window replacement can be an expensive renovation. Here are a few things to consider before making your decision. • Do your windows get frost or condensation build-up on the interior side? This could be a sign that the windows are not keeping out the cold as well as they should. • Do you see water infiltration or mildew on the interior sides of any of the window sills? This means that moisture is creeping in from the outside, and you need to get those windows repaired or replaced as soon as possible. • If your windows are double-paned – (two panes of glass) – check for any signs of moisture in between the glass panes. Moisture indicates that the thermal seal is broken and at a minimum, the glass will need to be replaced. • Take a look at your windows from the outside. Is the trim rotted or cracked anywhere? Are there dark spots or any signs of rotting on the wood frames? Repairs or replacement may be required. • Check the operation of your windows. Do they open and close easily? This is important because some windows, such as those in bedrooms, are often designed to be big enough to use as an exit in case of a fire. • Finally, are you happy with how your windows look? Do you feel that your property will look significantly better with new windows? Although they are expensive, replacing windows has a lot of advantages. Depending on the efficiency of your current windows, replacing them could cut your energy …

Assessing a property’s long term potential

You see a home on the market that you like. Should you buy it? Before you make an offer, it’s a good idea to get a sense of the property’s long-term potential. After all, a property is not just a potential home, it’s also an important investment. Here are some things to look for when viewing homes on the market: Is the area’s average income increasing? The more affluent a neighborhood becomes, the higher the property values. Are employment opportunities growing nearby? If jobs are leaving the area, housing prices will likely decline. Are there any nearby housing or community developments that will enhance the quality of life in the area? If a park with a quiet walking trail, or a prestigious golf course, is being built nearby, the value of the neighborhood will increase. Is the crime rate on the rise or decline? This can have a significant impact on future property values. Are there public transit lines located nearby? Studies show that housing prices increase in areas where public transit is close and convenient. Is the property located in a neighborhood dominated by higher priced homes? Does the property have features that will always be valued by home buyers, such as a large kitchen or spacious backyard. Are there short-term negatives about the area that will eventually disappear, such as loud construction projects? Once those negatives are gone, house prices will often jump. Need help finding the right home for you? Call (604)764-1380 or use the contact form below and we’ll get started!  

Ten Ways to Get the Best of Winter When Selling Your Home

If your home will be for sale this winter, it is important to master certain seasonal issues that are less significant or even non-existent at other times of the year. Here are 10 bits of sage advice from RE/MAX agents that can help put a “Sold” sticker on that yard sign. Let Those Lights Shine: The best way to combat winter’s short and frequently cloudy days is to turn on your house lights. For a showing, every single light in the house must be on, even in the closets and utility/mechanical rooms, according to Marlene Granacki of RE/MAX Exclusive Properties, Chicago. “Make sure all the bulbs are working, and stock up on all the right bulbs for lamps and fixtures so burned out bulbs can be replaced immediately,” she advises. “Also, it’s a great idea to keep the lights on in the front of the house even if no showings are scheduled. People are always driving past the house, and keeping it lighted makes it look happy and welcoming.” She also advises opening the drapes and blinds during the day to let in light and let visitors enjoy the view. Provide Convenient Parking: It’s vital that buyers have a convenient place to park. They won’t want to walk very far in cold weather or be forced to climb over a snow bank to exit their vehicle. Because parking is often more restricted around condominiums, sellers should make sure their agent can pass along parking details to buyers. Make It Easy to Enter: Winter showings can get off to an awkward start if prospective buyers arrive with snow or salt on their shoes. “Make it easy for buyers to deal with their shoes when they arrive,” recommends Barbara Hibnick of RE/MAX Showcase, Long Grove, Ill. “Put a festive area rug at …

FREE Info About Real Estate Investing in Canada & USA

If you’ve ever thought about investing in real estate, in Canada or the USA, then this FREE information evening is something you should definitely check out!!! Below you’ll find details about the event. SPACE IS LIMITED, so please RSVP as soon as possible to reserve your spot!  

Home improvements to help you get the most when selling your house

  It’s a highly competitive market for home sellers right now. More homes to compete with means that the impression your homes makes – from the curb, and on the inside – matter now more than ever. You can increase your chances of selling faster – and at today’s top dollar – by investing in a select few home improvement projects that have been shown to make a big impact on buyers. Bad news alert: it might cost you a little time, effort and cash.  The good news, though, is that the best projects for quickly increasing your home’s resale value tend to be cosmetic and fairly simple and inexpensive to do. Here are five projects with big-time return on investment for home sellers-to-be, in terms of their power to attract buyers, and to attract dollars from those buyers. 1. Painting: Adding a fresh coat of paint to ceilings and walls is a tried and true way to increase your home’s appeal to buyers. Go for white or neutral tones that help lighten your rooms. (Now is not the time to show off your fascination with fuschia and lime green.) Buyers will have an easier time envisioning how they will infuse their own personalities into your home if they’re looking at a relatively blank slate. Painting lightens and brightens rooms, instantly removes scuffs and dings and gives every room a fresh, polished feel. Fresh exterior paint – even if your time or cash budget limits your efforts to accents like eaves, shutters, doors and trims – is also a quick, inexpensive way to polish the look of your home from the curb. 2. Landscaping: Everything you’ve heard about curb appeal is true. First impressions matter – especially if your house is one of eight or nine a buyer has seen in one day. …

Enhance the Space in your Home

Nothing sells a home better than space! The more open, flowing and orderly rooms seem to potential buyers, the easier it will be to sell the home. That’s one reason buyers tend to prefer newer homes equipped with open-design floor plans. Whether your home was built in the last year, or the last millennium, there are things you can do to enhance its space. Before you get started, it’s important to ask yourself what a redecorating or home improvement project will do to enhance the space in your home. Even if you’re not thinking of selling today, you may consider it in the future. Making decisions now to enhance the space in your home will pay off in a big way when you eventually do sell.

Home Security – Deadbolts

When securing your home, it’s important to know that all locks are not created equal. Home security professionals overwhelmingly prefer deadbolts to other types of locks because deadbolts are harder to bypass. When choosing a deadbolt, look for one with a full one-inch bolt. You also want to look for a reinforced strike plate with long mounting screws for strength and durability. Reputable manufacturers offer a wide range of locks with varying prices. When you think about your security though, spending a few extra dollars on the right lock can be well worth it.

Energy Efficiency Checklist for your Home

In this era of rising energy prices and global warming, it makes sense that our homes should be as energy efficient as possible. An easy way to do this is to know where your home is likely to lose energy and then take corrective action to minimize the impact. I have an energy efficiency checklist that I would be happy to share with you free of charge. That way, you’ll be ahead of the game when it comes to energy conservation. Home Energy Checklist What You Can Do Today… – Turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting (120F). You’ll not only save energy, you’ll avoid the risk of accidental scalding. – Check if your water heater has an insulating blanket. An insulating blanket will pay for itself in one year or less! – If you own a waterbed, make sure you make your bed today. The covers will insulate it and save up to one-third of the energy it uses. – Begin using energy-saving settings on your refrigerator, dishwasher and clothes washer/dryer. – Make sure you check the age and condition of your major appliances, especially the refrigerator. You may want to replace it with a more energy-efficient model before it expires. – Examine your incandescent lights for opportunities to replace them with compact fluorescents. These new bulbs can save three-quarters of the electricity used by incandescents. The best targets are 60- to 100-watt bulbs used several hours a day. Measure the clearance in your fixtures to make sure they will accommodate compact fluorescents, which are slightly larger than incandescent bulbs. – Clean or replace the filters in your furnace, air-conditioner and heat pump. …This Week – Visit the hardware store. Buy a water-heater blanket, low-flow showerheads, faucet aerators and compact florescent bulbs. – Rope …


Nothing affects energy loss in your home quite like windows. Winter heat and summer cooling is lost more through poor windows than any other feature in your home. Fortunately, windows are one area where new technology has made a world of difference. New window glazing techniques can often result in more energy efficient windows for your home. The best way to determine what you can do to save energy is to talk with a reputable window dealer. They can make recommendations that will enhance your home’s value and save energy at the same time.  

Attic Ventilation

Attic ventilation is a factor critical to the comfort of your home, yet so few people pay attention to it. In warm weather excess heat found in your attic may lead to deterioration of wood supports due to condensation occurring as a result of inadequate ventilation. In cold weather, moisture laden air may move from the living area to the attic, resulting once again in a condensation problem if not properly ventilated. If you’ve noticed discoloration of wood in your attic, improper ventilation may be a problem in your home. A Realtor can put you in touch with some excellent resources that will help you determine if this is the case.

Home Renovations to Increase Real Estate Value

It’s common for homeowners to begin a remodeling job expecting to receive a return in excess of the cost of the remodel. Most homeowners view remodeling as an “improvement”, but the reality is that such projects often only bring the home up to current standards. It’s important to go into a remodeling project with realistic expectations. A home that meets current standards will be easier to sell when compared with other homes that haven’t been updated, but the increase in value might be less than you expect. Before you start your big project, call me and let’s talk about it. As your real estate professional, I can give you a realistic estimate of the value that will be added to your home.