What to Watch for when Viewing an Older Home

Buying an older property definitely has its advantages. The neighbourhood will already be well-established, so you’ll be able to get a sense of the community. The trees will be grown. The area will have a defined character. This combination of an older home and established community may be something you like, or even love.
 
However, when you’re viewing an older home for sale, there are a few extra things you need to be sure to check. Here are the most important:
 
Needed replacements. Nothing lasts forever. In any home, there are items that will eventually need to be replaced. The most common include roofing shingles, furnace, water heater, air conditioner, windows, deck, and fencing. When viewing an older property, ask about the age of each of these items. You’ll get an idea of probable upcoming replacement expenses.
 
Building issues. Homes were built differently decades ago than they are today. So, there may be issues that need to be addressed by a new owner. Some can be serious, such as water leakage and structural problems. Others, less so, such as old electrical outlets that need to be updated. If there are issues like these, they’ll likely be identified during the professional home inspection.
 
Drafts. Drafts are common in older homes. Of course, that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be fixed. Even modest infiltration of air through an old window or door with worn weatherstripping could add hundreds of wasted dollars to your energy bill each year. Look for signs of drafts when viewing a home.
 
The good news is, the overwhelming majority of these issues can be fixed easily. Don’t let them dissuade you from buying an older home you otherwise like.

The Latest in Kitchen Fire Prevention – What You Need to Know

More fires start in the kitchen than in any other room. These fires can be expensive; since even a minor incident, with no injuries, can result in significant damage. That’s why it’s important to keep up with the latest in fire prevention.
 
The most recent research tells us: Never leave cooking food unattended. Doing so is the number one cause of kitchen fires.
 
Make sure cooking appliances, especially deep fryers, are safety certified by the appropriate government agency.
 
When using oil in a frying pan, always heat slowly at no more than a medium heat setting.
 
Always turn off stove burners and other cooking appliances immediately after cooking.
 
Never attempt to put out a grease fire with water. Use baking soda or a fire extinguisher.
Never remove or cover up a smoke detector due to nuisance alarms. The one alarm that isn’t a nuisance may save your life.
 
Finally, experts say that if you can’t put out a fire immediately, get everyone out of the home and call emergency services.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Finding the List Price “Tipping Points”

 
Setting the right list price for a home is a mystery for many sellers. How do you begin to determine what buyers are likely to pay for your property? After all, no two homes are exactly alike.
 
Yet, setting the right price is crucial. You need to avoid the two price “tipping points” that, if crossed, can cause you a lot of problems.
 
The first tipping point is a price that’s low enough for buyers to begin thinking something is wrong. They wonder, “Why is your price so low? What are you not telling us about your property?”
 
But that’s not even the worst problem with this tipping point. If you do get offers at that low price, you’ll have a bigger issue – leaving thousands of dollars on the table.
 
The other tipping point is setting your price so high it discourages buyers from giving your listing a second look. When your price is that high, you’ll get few enquiries and even fewer people coming to see your property.
 
Of course, you can lower your price later, if necessary. But experience shows that reduced prices make potential buyers skeptical. Most sellers who price high in the hopes of getting a windfall, actually end up selling for much less than they would have had they priced their properties correctly in the first place.
So, what’s the right price to list your property? The answer is somewhere in-between those two tipping points.
 
Call today for help determining the right price for your property.
Jane 250-744-0775 or briarhillgroup@gmail.com

Single Story For Sale in Fernwood, Victoria

Photo Link

•  883 sqft , 1 bath , 1 bdrm single story FOR SALE  CAD395,000 .
MLS® 882925

Centrally located condo has been RENOVATED from flooring to bathroom and kitchen! Situated on the Oak Bay Border where Pandora meets Fort, enjoy the luxury of this LARGE, one bedroom RENTABLE condo with 1 PARKING SPACE. The owner updated this condo in 2018, with permits, including brand new flooring, paint and trim. The bathroom was gutted down to the studs and includes updated bath tub, bath surround, a very nice silestone vanity and flooring. The kitchen is also gorgeous with updated cabinets, silestone counter tops, stove, range hood and dishwasher. This bright and airy condo has a large bedroom and huge living room with floor to ceiling patio doors opening up to the large deck and overlooking the greenspace. The building has many upgrades as well including a courtyard, workshop, pool, hot tub, gym, sauna, library, games room and secure parking. It’s also on bus routes to UVic and Camosun. Available immediately.

Property information

Beyond Boxes: Packing Materials You May Need for your Move

As you probably know, when you’re preparing to move, you’ll need boxes and tape — and, perhaps some bubble-wrap or old newspapers to use as protective wrapping for delicate items.
 
But that may not be all you need. Take a look at this list and see if you want to have any of these on hand while you’re packing or on your moving day:
 
* Colour markers for labelling boxes. (Tip: Colour coding boxes by room will make unpacking much easier.)
* Stretch wrap to protect larger items that can’t fit into a box.
* Small plastic bags to store disassembled parts, such as sofa legs, cabinet hardware, etc. (You don’t want to lose them!)
* Moving blankets to protect floors.
* A dolly or hand truck to move heavy items. (You can rent these.)
* Mattress moving bags. These help prevent stains and tears during your move. You can also buy specialty bags for sofas and tables.
* Reusable foam furniture sliders, to protect floors when furniture needs to be pushed into place.
* Foam corner protectors. These prevent furniture with sharp corners from banging and damaging other items during a move.
 
Planning ahead and having the right packing and moving materials on hand will make your move less stressful and, hopefully, damage-free!
 

One Hour Ideas for Boosting Curb Appeal

You’ve heard of the term “curb appeal”. It refers to the initial impression buyers get when they first see your property from the street. If the impression is a good one, it sets the right tone for the rest of the home viewing.
 
How do you boost curb appeal? Here are some proven ideas that you can get done in an hour or so:
Wash both the inside and outside of the front windows. You’ll be amazed at the difference that can make.
Sweep the walkway leading up to the front entrance. Add a new welcome mat. Also, wash down the front door.
 
If possible, remove cars from the driveway. Let buyers imagine their own cars parked there!
Mow the lawn. Lightly trim the hedges. Weed flower beds.
 
Remove anything from inside window sills that may look unsightly from the outside. Try putting a couple of flowering plants there instead.
 
Place any trash bins out-of-sight. For example, put them in the garage or neatly at the side of the house.
If the entrance door hardware is old and worn, change it. New hardware can make a bigger difference than you might think.
 
Make sure the outdoor lights are working, especially if you’re showing your home in the evening.
 
Add some flowering plants to flower beds, or buy a couple of portable potted plants and place them strategically.
 
Clean your mailbox. If it’s rusted, replace it.
 
If you have a power washer, give the walkway and driveway a quick blast. Just be sure it will be dry before the buyers arrive.
 
These one-hour improvements may seem minor, but anything that helps buyers form a more positive first impression of your home is worth the effort.
 
 

Buyer Tips: Getting Ready for a Winning Offer!

Contact me 

Should You Reclaim the “Lost” Bedroom?

Do you have an extra bedroom that you’ve converted into a home office, arts and crafts room or other non-slumbering use? If so, you may be wondering if you should convert it back into a traditional bedroom before you list.

According to home staging experts, that may be a good idea.

Although buyers will know the space was designed as a bedroom, there will be a psychological response to seeing it used otherwise. For example, say potential buyers view a property with a master bedroom, a second bedroom, and a third bedroom converted into a child’s playroom. Logically, they’ll know it’s a three-bedroom home – but the impression that will form will be of “two bedrooms and a playroom”, not a “three bedroom home.” This is especially true if closet doors have been removed. They may even start wondering whether there is anywhere else for a child to play.

So, when you’re selling, consider changing the bedroom back to its original purpose. You don’t necessarily need to put in a bed and dresser (although for staging purposes, that would help.) Just make the bedroom look like a bedroom for showings.

Keep this in mind: It’s easier for buyers to imagine a bedroom as a potential home office, playroom, etc. than the other way around.

 

The Latest Options in Outdoor Lighting

Outdoor lighting has come a long way from the days of patio lanterns and strings of lightbulbs. These days, there’s an exhaustive array of options available to illuminate your outdoor space, and make it more appealing and comfortable, particularly in the evenings.

Here are just a few ideas:

Solar garden lights. These lights are on stakes that can be easily inserted throughout the garden. Powered by the sun, they generate enough energy to cast a soft, pleasant glow along walkways or in flower beds in the evenings.

Deck post lights. These are easy to install because they’re designed to sit on top of a standard 4×4 wood deck post. Most are solar powered.

Street-style lamps. As the name implies, these look similar to old-fashioned street lamps. Installation is a little more complex, but still DIY-friendly. They’re eye-catching and have a dramatic impact on the look of your outdoor space.

Portable lantern lights. These are outdoor lights that are portable and often made to look like a decorative fixture for a coffee table or side table. They can be placed anywhere.

LED walkway lights. These are small lights that fit neatly and almost invisibly under stairs and around walkways. Walkway lights not only look good but also improve safety. Most are battery powered.

Planter lights. This is one of the most interesting options. Each one is both a flower pot and a light in one! The pot itself is translucent which allows the light inside to shine through.

Design experts say you should treat your outdoor space as you would any room in your home. Lighting it up for evening comfort and enjoyment is a good place to start.

One Hour Ideas for Boosting Curb Appeal


You’ve heard of the term “curb appeal”. It refers to the initial impression buyers get when they first see your property from the street. If the impression is a good one, it sets the right tone for the rest of the home viewing.
How do you boost curb appeal? Here are some proven ideas that you can get done in an hour or so:
 
Wash both the inside and outside of the front windows. You’ll be amazed at the difference that can make.
Sweep the walkway leading up to the front entrance. Add a new welcome mat. Also, wash down the front door.
 
If possible, remove cars from the driveway. Let buyers imagine their own cars parked there!
 
Mow the lawn. Lightly trim the hedges. Weed flower beds.
 
Remove anything from inside window sills that may look unsightly from the outside. Try putting a couple of flowering plants there instead.
 
Place any trash bins out-of-sight. For example, put them in the garage or neatly at the side of the house.
 
If the entrance door hardware is old and worn, change it. New hardware can make a bigger difference than you might think.
 
Make sure the outdoor lights are working, especially if you’re showing your home in the evening.
 
Add some flowering plants to flower beds, or buy a couple of portable potted plants and place them strategically.
 
Clean your mailbox. If it’s rusted, replace it.
 
If you have a power washer, give the walkway and driveway a quick blast. Just be sure it will be dry before the buyers arrive.
 
These one-hour improvements may seem minor, but anything that helps buyers form a more positive first impression of your home is worth the effort.