Open House in Gorge, Victoria

We invite everyone to visit our open house at 7 Gorge Rd W on 12 Feb 2022, 02:00 PM

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Should You Replace your Windows?

 
Here’s a surprising statistic. Less than 30% of window replacements are the result of the old windows being worn, broken or otherwise in need of replacement.
 
Clearly, there are other good reasons to consider new windows!
One of the most popular motivations is cosmetic. Brand new windows have a huge impact on the overall look of a home, both on the inside and the outside. New windows can improve curb appeal — an important element when you sell a home. From the inside, new windows can dramatically improve the look of a room.
 
technologies that lower heating and cooling bills. From low-e/argon to special spacer bars to highly insulating options, window technologies can provide savings you’ll notice, especially if you’re replacing very old windows.
 
A third reason is window style and characteristics. Simply put, you may not like your current windows! You may want more glass and less frame to enhance your view. Maybe your windows pull up (vertical sliders) when you’d rather have them open like a door (casements). Perhaps you’d like fancy blinds in-between the panes of glass. Replacing windows lets you get exactly the look and features you want.
 
Will new windows boost the resale value of your home? They might, at least a little. But there’s one thing for certain: upgraded windows definitely make your home look more appealing to buyers.
 
For more articles check out my blog!

January 2022 Real Estate Market Statistic

Selling your Home and those Two Little Voices

 
When you’re shopping for a new car or anything else that impacts you personally, you probably have two little voices chatting in your head. The first is saying, “This is what I want.” The second is asking, “Can I really afford this?”
 
Ideally, both voices are in agreement and you’re able to buy what you want at a price that’s reasonable. Of course, there are other times when you’ll need to compromise on some features in order to stay within your price range.
 
This same dynamic plays out when you’re thinking of moving. You may start wondering, “Is the type of house I want to get into really within my price range?”
 
In fact, that question holds many homeowners back from even considering a move. They’re stuck wondering if they can get into the home they want.
 
If you’ve been wondering the same thing, why not find out? It’s relatively easy.
 
The first step is to get a current market evaluation to calculate how much your current property would sell for on today’s market. That figure is determined by many factors, but it’s mainly driven by what similar properties in your area have sold for recently.
 
Once you know what you can expect to get for your home, you’ll need to find out how much of a mortgage (if required) you qualify to receive. We can recommend a few excellent mortgage brokers to use.
 
The final step is to take a look at current listings in neighbourhoods you’re targeting and see which properties for sale fit within your budget. We will set you up on a home search.
 
You might be pleasantly surprised to discover that the two voices in your head are in agreement, and you can get the home you want at a price you can afford.
 
Contact me for a current market evaluation for your home 250-744-0775 or briarhillgroup@gmail.com
 

Fire Safety Checks You Should Do at Least Once a Year

Fire Safety Checks You Should Do at Least Once a Year

Chances are, you know that you should change the batteries in your smoke detectors at least once a year — even if you suspect the batteries are still good.
But that isn’t the only fire safety check you should do annually. Here are some other recommended tips to help keep you and your family safe.

Clean your stove burners and oven regularly. Hard grease build-up can become combustible.
Check your cupboard for cleaning products, paints and other liquids that are flammable. Read each label carefully. Use and store each product only as recommended.
If you keep a fire extinguisher in your kitchen — and you should — confirm that it is still good. Extinguishers are like food. They have expiry dates!

Go over your fire escape plan with your family. Make sure everyone knows exactly what to do if a smoke detector goes off or if there’s a fire.

Check that all windows open easily, especially upper floor windows.
Check appliances you use often, such as hair dryers, for worn or frayed cords.
Regularly clear away lint build-up in the clothes dryer. Check the outside dryer vent annually to make sure it’s clear and working correctly.

If you have a wood-burning fireplace or stove, get it cleaned and inspected by a licensed technician once a year.


Many local fire departments offer homeowners free tips and even in-home advice and inspections at no cost. Contact your fire department and ask about programs available to you.

Listing Before a Repair or Fix-Up is Done?

If you’re thinking of selling your home, you may have walked through it and discovered that you’ve been ignoring work that needs to be done to make your home look its best. For example, you may have been living with a cracked floor tile that needs to be fixed, or a damaged closet door that requires replacement.

Is it a good idea to get these maintenance issues dealt with before you list? Typically, yes. You want your home to show well. Anything unsightly or concerning will get noticed by buyers.

Fortunately, investing the time and money to get the work done will pay off. It will help you sell your home faster and for a good price.

However, there may be circumstances in which you need to list before repairs and other improvements are completed. For example, if you need to sell within the next few weeks, you may simply not have enough time. In that case, there are a couple of options. Either you can arrange for the work to be done and let buyers know that it’s been scheduled; or, you can let buyers know about the issues and let them know you’re selling as is.

 

 

5 Ways to Re-Energize in Just 5 Minutes

December tends to be a busy month for most people. It’s all-too-easy to feel drained and even burned-out. Unfortunately, you may not have the luxury of time to relax with a good book or go to a yoga class. So, with that in mind, here are some proven ways to quickly unwind and boost your energy:

Take a short walk. Scientists say your body will often de-stress significantly after just a 12-minute stroll.

Drink a glass of water. Dehydration, which can come on without you realizing it, can quickly lead to fatigue and tension.

Do something completely different. Often, if you completely remove yourself from a situation or activity, even for just a few minutes, you’ll come back feeling better. So, take a moment for yourself!

Breathe and stretch. It’s almost impossible to feel tense after a few deep breaths and some stretching exercises. In fact, that’s where the urge to yawn and stretch comes from. It’s your body’s way of boosting energy!

Write it down. If you’re worried or frustrated about something, writing it down will feel like deflating that balloon of stress. Taking it off your shoulders and onto paper will put the concern into perspective. Try one of these tips the next time you feel overwhelmed.

Buying a Home Out-of-Town

 Have you ever considered selling your home and moving out-of-town? One concern that might be holding you back is the uncertainty involved in finding a home in an unfamiliar place. What are the best neighbourhoods? What are homes selling for in that area? What is it like to live there?

There are many ways to find out.

  • If possible, spend a day in the area. Walk some of the neighbourhoods. Visit schools and parks. Check out the local shopping and other amenities.
  • Talk to someone who lives there. This will give you firsthand insights into the area. You can facilitate this through a Facebook post where you ask to chat with a local resident.
  • View current listings in the area online. Most listings include helpful data on safety, demographics and other information.
  • Get a handle on home prices by finding out what a home like yours is currently selling for in that area. That will give you a baseline to determine what you can expect to pay.

What’s the bottom line? There’s no need to let uncertainty about finding a home in a different town or city hold you back.

If you are moving to Victoria check out our show Vancouver Island Time which highlights the different neighbourhoods in Greater Victoria. CLICK HERE!

Managing Home Insurance

Home insurance seems to be getting costlier every year, with basic premiums continuing to rise as more homes are exposed to added risks attributed to extreme weather events, accidents, vandalism, and outright theft.
 
This leaves homeowners in a difficult situation, but there are things that can be done to help ease rising costs. First, examine your current policy and talk to your agent/broker about your coverage and premiums. You might, for example, agree to increase your deductible to decrease premiums. Meanwhile, you may also be eligible for discounts, based on client profiles such as bundled policies (e.g., auto & home), claims history, and payment punctuality.
 
Other discounts may be available based on steps taken to protect your home from potential damage, such as installing a backflow valve or sump pump. Or, you may qualify for lower insurance rates if you have recently improved your home’s structural integrity, such as its foundation or roof. Your policy premiums might also benefit from other investments in your home’s infrastructure, like upgrading your heating, wiring or plumbing, or installing a centralized fire and security system. You’ll need to determine whether the cost of these improvements will be offset by lower insurance premiums over a reasonable period of time.
 

Selling your Home? Choose the Right Photos

They say a picture speaks a thousand words. That’s certainly true in real estate. Sure, property descriptions are vitally important, but photos are essential. Especially these days, when so many people view listings online, the right photos can mean the difference between a buyer becoming interested in your property or moving on to the next listing.

So, what photos should you take?

Recent studies suggest that the more photos the better. Property listings that feature several photos tend to attract more buyers than those with just a single picture or none at all. So, you’ll want to have plenty taken. Some of the most effective shots include:

  • Photos of each room.
  • Desirable features, such as a gorgeous fireplace.
  • The property facade.
  • The backyard and other appealing outdoor features.
  • Key rooms from multiple perspectives, such as the kitchen, master en suite, and dining room.

Before having these photos taken, be sure to prepare. If you were having a family photo taken by a professional photographer, you’d probably ensure everyone dressed their best. The same holds true when listing pictures are taken. Make sure your home looks its best.

Get as much decluttering and cleaning done as possible before pictures are taken. Also, if there are any repairs needed around the home, especially ones that are likely to show up in a photo, get those taken care of too.

Of course, if you need to list your home quickly, there are ways to shoot photos that still look great, even before your home is 100% prepared.

Listing photography doesn’t take that long, so scheduling won’t be a big concern. 

 

For more articles check out our blog, CLICK HERE!