{Real Estate}How to navigate the Real Estate Market Successfully...Tips from a Realtor ® who also wears a design, advertising, marketing and social media hat.

Many of you are still unsure of whether you should be buying or selling a home in the current market with the new HST hike and interest rate rise predictions. Despite the confusion you may have, you don't have to sit in limbo.

For people looking to buy...now is a very great time. Current mortgage interest rates are at an all-time low, it is the perfect time for investors, first-time home buyers and existing homeowners who are looking to upgrade to purchase a property...but you will want to move fast!

TIPS for Buyers:

1. Know your credit worthiness

Do not assume that your credit rating is perfect. To often buyers assume that they have perfect credit...only to find out they have an old bill on their profile or errors. To avoid surprises when meeting with a lender, check your rating first so you can resolve any issues that might interfere with your ability to purchase a new home. You can call either Trans Union of Canada at 1-800-663-9980 or Equifax Credit Information Services Canada at 1-800-465-7166. 

2. Get Pre-approved!

....and I don't mean pre-qualified...by pre-approved I mean...decide on a house similar to what you would really like to purchase and visit your lender with the actual listing. Bring along all of your credentials including your pay stubs, assets and liabilities and get approved! Find out exactly what you're able to borrow and get that in writing. Its best to have all of this information in place before finding the perfect home... as not to waste your time being disappointed by offers placed that get rejected by the bank due to financing. You will save your self heartache...your time including the agents time. Banks have become much more strict on lending quidelines....know where you stand and your buying budget and stick to it! I can't stress enough on this important step!

3. Know what you are buying - Look at that Property Disclosure sheet! Get that home inspection!

Buyers get caught up and emotional when buying a home...after all it is an exciting time! But always make sure to look at the property disclosure for the history of a home and its potential hidden problems. Most sellers will supply a property disclosure when selling...if there isn't one...sometimes it could send red flags. A good agent will find and point out any known issues a home may or could have and find out the answers to your inquiries. Most importantly for peace of mind when buying...get a home inspection. That way you have a perfect complete picture of what you are getting into before waiving that condition on a purchase and sale agreement.

4. Location Location!

Whether you're an investor, first-time home buyer or existing homeowner, you need to understand the best locations for your investment.  As an investor, a property within walking distance to major amenities and schools is a smart move...for a first-time home buyer, buying a smaller home on a desirable street could be the answer or a fixer upper may reap future resale rewards. Think outside the box...maybe as an existing home owner you want to upgrade and settle... relocating to an area just outside of town could be the answer...where properties could be larger on larger blocks of land and less expensive. Know your location...a good agent will help you make informed decisions based on historical sales in desired locations.

TIPS for Sellers:

1. Stage your Home

 How many times have you seen a property that’s visually unappealing with so much furniture knick knacks and clutter it  is impossible to see anything? There are walls that need cleaning, strange odors, decor that looks like it came from the Boogy nights movie, cracks that need plastering, questionable lighting and colors that require a good pair of RayBan's. 
For the most part, potential buyers/investors will be turned off by a property that looks this way. If you ask them what they remember about it, they are  uncertain. Its hard to look past all that over stimulation and remember anything positive.
How the property is presented should be given as much importance as matching the perfect pair of shoes with the perfect dress. Potential home buyers will want to walk into a room and immediately say "I could live here".....so no matter what is happening in the real estate market, when you want to sell  your home, there are a couple rules to follow to assure a quick sale: price it well and at market, and make it look amazing! Whatever the asking price of your home is, its appearance should be flawless! If you are not decor savvy you should consider hiring a professional to help. Never underestimate the power of a well staged home!
2. Update Update!  
You don't have to do a complete renovation overhaul, but consider updating areas that are outdated and tired, such as painting with updated colors, replacing a kitchen countertop, replacing worn carpeting especially that 70's shag. You would be surprised the face lift you can obtain by simply repainting your outdated kitchen cabinets with a fresh white paint and some copper or pewter hardware.
As seen below in the before and afters: A kitchen overhaul design project I did with a new home and hickory cabinets. By resurfacing with new paint, antiquing/glazing, new hardware and adding a few new wood details...I gave the entire kitchen a new look and added way more value to the home.

3. Come on down - The Price is right!

Always price your property right the first time. This is where you really want to take the advice of your agent. They have the know how and experience to do a market analysis of your property  and area....and give you the most accurate selling point for your home. Some sellers think that if they overprice their property, they have all this room to negotiate or they can always reduce it later...This strategy can do more harm than good. Sellers run the risk of not getting any showings and after months of just sitting...the property becomes stale and over looked by potential buyers. Prospective buyers will search for homes within their price range. If your home is listed way too high, buyers may skip over it. Ultimately the price is up to the seller....but a good agent will show you all of the current active comparables in your area as well as solds and expired listings so you can make an informed decision.


Your home will most likely be the largest investment you'll ever make...so you'll want to feel completely comfortable when you go to buy or sell. Select the agent that you need...one that suits your situation... who you feel you can trust. If you're selling...always find someone who has a solid marketing and advertising plan in this technology driven time. You need someone who is going to work for you and in your best interest. Someone who will go the extra mile to help you buy or sell and negotiate for you. Someone who will liaison with insurance companies, lawyers, mortgage brokers etc on your behalf.  You do not want someone who is not savvy to the new age of technology and who will just list your home and wait for it to sell itself. 

Are you ready to sell or purchase your next home? I'd be thrilled to help you market your home the right way with the latest social media exposure and design techniques, help you find your dream home or with my decorating background help you see past imperfections and find a diamond in the rough to refurbish. 

Call or Text: 709-572-6594 - email: cjoy@centralrealty.ca


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