You staged your home for the listing photos, you cleaned places you never noticed before and you set out pillows, accessories and flowers to welcome buyers to your home.

 

Everything is perfect. Then everyone comes home from school, work and sports events and stuff appears as if by magic in every room.

 

Preparing for showings can sometimes cause folks angst as it is hard to keep everything 'perfect' all the time. How we show our homes isn't often how we live day to day especially if we have children and pets.

 

1. Prepack some unneeded items and ensure you have one spot in each room to put all that random stuff that shows up.


- Living room: Keep an empty ottoman or empty couple drawers in the living room. On non-showing days keep all the showing accessories in there. On showing days, put everything that's been left out in the living room in the ottoman. You'll find the remote that way when you get home.
- Children's room - toy trunk or storage bin under the bed
- Bathroom - storage bin under the sink or in the hall closet
- Kitchen - storage box in the pantry
- Office - keep all your personal papers locked away.
- Bedroom - empty drawer for laundry

 

2. Prepare a showing tidy kit for yourself in a carry container. Cleaning wipes, stainless steel wipes, duster, etc. for last minute cleaning as you walkthrough your home.

 

3. Keep an extra bag for baby items, toys, food, water or whatever you may need in the car just in case. That way you have an extra whatever-you-need on those days where timing doesn't go in your favour.

 

4. Have a plan of a few places to go during showings and options for folks to watch your pets.

 

5. Determine your showing cut off times and communicate them to your Realtor. It is very common for homes with children to end showings at a specific time like 7 or 8pm. That way you maintain your normal evening bed routines no matter the days events.

 

Short term staging and cleaning and you will soon be on your way to your new home. All the best!

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The official numbers are out for November. I've been mulling them over before I sent out my update because things feel different than the numbers suggest.

 

November sales and pricing numbers were down. November was the first full month following implementation of the new lending rules and many people have been pondering the consequence of that change. The rules change has definitely slowed down the market.

 

While the effect of the new lending rules is supported by the data that does not tell the whole story. At the same time I am having a hard time finding good new detached home options for some clients. They could be hoping for lower prices still or maybe many sellers are just choosing not to list their homes resulting in lower inventories. There were 2680 detached homes on market November 2015, but only 2322 on the market November this year. As the holidays approach we expect the number of listings to continue to constrict until after the new year.

 

The trend is quite different for apartments where inventories remain higher on the resale market. Townhomes and semi-detached properties fluctuate in terms of supply / demand differences this year compared to last depending on the area of the city.

 

There have been more sales in the upper price and luxury price points this year than last. Perhaps some folks are recognizing the savings opportunity here. A 5% reduction on a $1,000,000 home is quite the savings if someone is moving from a $500,000 home. They would have sold their previous home for a bit less but overall enjoyed relative savings on the new purchase in this market.

 

Now, what's next is what is on the horizon? The approval of two major pipeline projects, Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain expansion and Enbridge's Line 3 replacement, has many ears perking up. Energy East is yet to be determined as is Keystone XL.

 

So time to look ahead with open eyes and prepare for 2017. It will take a bit of time for new projects to translate into jobs, but it is great to see positive news in our forecasts.

 

With that I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all, my amazing clients, for your continued support. Be it calls for information, a move, a referral or just to say hello, I feel touched that you turn to me with your real estate questions. I am always happy to help and happy to say hello. I''m always curious about your move, if you like your community, and how the family is doing.

 

I wish you all the very best in 2017. Keep in touch and feel free to contact me anytime.

 

Cheers,
Monika

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When looking for a new home, an initial item many folks consider is the home size. On reviewing properties you will see the property measurement in sq ft or sq m, but you may not know what that number actually measures.

 
All properties measured for sale in Alberta must follow RMS (Residential Measurements Standard) as outlined by RECA (Real Estate Council Alberta).  The current rules of the RMS came into effect in 2016.
 
The details of the measurement guidelines provided by RECA are very specific so please direct any specific questions to your Realtor or RECA directly.
 
In a general sense there are some fundamental items to consider.
 
1. Below grade measurements are not included in the RMS. The 'floor space' measurements for a listing on realtor.ca or other websites are above grade only even if it is a developed walkout or a split level below grade. The basement or below grade measurement is a separate figure.
 
2. Vaulted areas with no floor such as two storey open to below are excluded from measurements. Minimum ceiling heights are required in areas of sloped roofs and details surround the inclusion/exclusion of bay windows and other cantilevers.
 
3. Detached homes are measured using the exterior wall at the foundation.
 
4. Attached properties with a common wall such as half duplexes, villas, townhouses and apartments are measured based on interior walls (paint to paint) at floor level. (This means these properties show smaller than if the same property was detached.)
 
The most important item to consider is that RMS treats all property of the same type the same. If a property is not measured according to the RMS standard it makes it difficult to compare to other properties.
 
As always, please feel free to contact me with any questions or for more information regarding the purchase or sale of your home. 
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I was out and about a week or so ago with some clients showing homes and we got into a conversation about shoes as they searched for a place to sit and tie their shoes after a showing. They commented on my shoes. My easy to slip on shoes.

 

We had an in-depth conversation about my shoes. Why? Because they are going to bring easy to put on shoes for our next showing appointment.

 

For those sellers listing their homes this winter season I'd ask you to consider shoes when preparing your home for showings.

 

- Many people have to tie their winter shoes. Please provide a place to sit if possible.

 

- If you ask people to take off their shoes, please keep the heat at a comfortable temperature. 

 

- Buyers will track snow into your front foyer. Please provide a welcome mat to wipe our shoes and an entrance mat inside.

 

- A couple of years ago I almost broke my leg slipping on ice trying to reach a lockbox at the side of a property. It was cold, icy and dark. I wasn't happy when I hit the ground. Please ensure the lockbox for your property is located in a safe location.

 

- Please clear your sidewalks and driveway of snow and ice so potential buyers can safely access your property.

 

Thank you for considering your buyers shoes when presenting your home this winter season.

 

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