Not all housing markets in Canada are created equal. According to the Canadian Real Estate Association’s latest data, the national average house price for August 2018 was just over $475,500. CREA noted that this figure is “heavily skewed by sales in the Greater Vancouver Area and the Greater Toronto Area, two of Canada’s most active and expensive markets. Excluding these two markets from calculations cuts almost $94,000 from the national average price, trimming it to just under $382,000.”
In fact, there’s no such thing as a “Canadian” housing market. Market activity and prices are very local, and factors at the municipal and even the neighbourhood level can impact what you’ll pay for a home there.
We thought it would be interesting to see what you can buy for that national average house price, from coast to coast.
VANCOUVER, BC • $484,999
The listing: 1 bedroom | 1 bath | 656 sq. ft. | condo
Staging should be about uncovering a home’s beauty, not hiding its flaws. And while most people are honest about the condition of their home, some people try to employ staging tricks to make a house seem more appealing. Read on to learn about which staging tricks you should be on the lookout for when house shopping.
1. Wide Angle Lens
Everyone’s favourite trick is to use a wide-angle lens to make a room look bigger. You can usually tell when one has been used, but even so, you still may think the room is bigger than it really is. Always make sure you see a home in person and don’t just rely on the photos.
2. Hiding Flaws
When touring a staged home, look for any furniture or accessories that seem a little out of place. It might be strategic placement to hide some sort of flaw – a damaged wall, or outlet, or something you haven’t seen at first glance. Don’t be afraid to poke around and look behind things. You never know what you’ll find.
3. Rugs Over Scratched Floors
Area rugs can hide a multitude of sins. Yes, they’re great for defining spaces and adding softness, but they can also conceal scratches and stains. Don’t be afraid to lift up a corner of an area rug to see what’s underneath.
4. Surface Fixes
No one wants to spend more than necessary when getting ready to sell their home, and as a result, some will only make quick surface fixes to improve a space. A common one is to replace kitchen cabinetry doors and hardware, but not the cabinet boxes. This is fine if the boxes are in good shape, but make sure you open them up and check inside.
5. Stainless-Steel Adhesive
Most people want stainless-steel appliances, and I’ve recently heard accounts of homeowners using stick-on stainless-steel adhesive to cover white or black appliances. If you’re selling your house, don’t do this. And if you’re touring a staged home, make sure the stainless-steel appliances are legit.
6. Diverting the Eye
Staging is important, and art can play a big part in making the space feel inviting. But when you’re oohing and aahing over a beautiful piece, don’t forget to also look above and around it. Art can be used to divert the eye away from shoddy trim, or cracks in the ceiling.
7. Small Furniture
A common trick is to place small, apartment-sized furniture in rooms to make the living space look bigger. This can work well in photos where it’s hard to get a real sense of scale. However, in person, I don’t think it’s as effective. It’s smarter to use regular furniture to stage a home, but less of it.
8. Closed Blinds
Usually during an open house, the window treatments will be open to allow in natural light. If they’re closed, there’s probably a reason. Take a look behind any drapes or blinds – you might find an unsightly view or a brick wall!
9. A Lot of Mirrors
I like to hang a mirror across from a window whenever I can to maximize natural light. But as a buyer, keep in mind that mirrors make a space seem a lot bigger than it really is. If a staged home has a lot of mirrors in it, remember that when they’re gone, it won’t look quite as open and airy.
10. A Little Too Perfect
When staging, most people try to make their home look as clean and clutter-free as possible. This is usually a good thing, but don’t be fooled into thinking the people really live this way, or that you will once you move in. Remember that all your stuff will have to go in there, so think about how the space will work in real life. Remember, Just because it looks perfect, it doesn’t mean everything functions properly. Look carefully and be vigilant.
Ahhhh, fall – the air turns crisp and cool, yellow patches of leaves appear to take over the treetops and you’re prepped for sweater weather. But, is your home ready for the season? Whether you do the dirty work yourself or hire out, RE/MAX put together a checklist to help you tackle fall home preps that can make a big difference of how your home handles the season.
Get your mind in the gutter. If you’re not on top of clogged gutters, you’re just asking for water damage. Water with nowhere to go can lead to exterior and foundational damage and maybe even a flooded basement. It’s a dirty job, but you can do it-or hire it out.
Check the chimney. While you’re up on the roof and the weather’s still calm-check your chimney for damage. Search for loose or broken joints and if the flue cap is still in place. Now’s the time to also attend to any damaged roof shingles or flashing.
Let’s get physical. Once the temperatures begin to drop, you’ll crank up that furnace and put it through quite a workout. Make sure it’s ready to handle the workload by replacing the filter and keep all the vents open so heat can circulate throughout your home.
Turn off outdoor plumbing. Blow out sprinkler systems, drain outdoor faucets and cover them to protect them from the freezing weather to come.
Clean outdoor furniture and gardening tools. Don’t let the harsh fall and winter weather get to your outdoor furniture and garden gadgets. Give them a quick clean up so they are ready for storage over the winter.
Stay safe out there. Fall is as good reminder to perform an annual check of the safety features in your home. Make sure the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors get fresh batteries, check the fire extinguisher or replace if it’s six years or older and take this chance to update or practice your fire escape plans.
Pre-plan for spring-blooms. Fall is the perfect time to plant bulbs for a big pay off in the spring. Set your sights on a spot in your yard that gets full sun and get digging.
Looking for that perfect home where you’re in charge of home preps and maintenance? Give me a call today at 613.639.6368 or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org today!