In recent meetings with clients, they've told me about friends or people on social media who are talking about becoming a realtor or a mortgage brokers as a great way to make money.  Well, it is a job, but...

I'm not aware of any successful realtor who got into it "for the money."  We chose it as maybe like me, we always liked real estate.  I started getting interested at about 10 years old because my Dad was.  I even helped my parents find a house to buy when I was just 13!  Combine that interest with a love of problem solving, using my business experience to create mini product launches with every new listing, & a real interest in helping people find the right home has served both me & my clients very well.  I really love what I do & it shows.

When you get into a business, any business, for the wrong reasons, that shows too.  Clients may feel pressured to make decisions, may not get the attention that they deserve, may not get the expertise that they need, or that generally this  just doesn't feel right, leaving them frustrated & disappointed.

Real estate is actually about relationships.  I spend a majority of my time listening, not talking.

When you're looking for a realtor, look for one who got into it for the right reasons!

Read full post

some Sellers think that in a Sellers' market, the home sells itself.  Well, it will sell but...

 I've yet to meet a Seller who doesn't want the best results.  That enables them to buy another home, maybe better than what they thought they could afford, or help their children get into real estate, or put more into the retirement fund.

Using a professional & experienced agent to sell your home & one that doesn't cut corners because "it's a Sellers' market" will always get the best results for a Seller.

What does experience bring to the deal?   Here are just a few:

  • Knowledge-we know what Buyers want-we've listened to them.  It's helpful for preparing or showing your home
  • easy tips to make your home look better
  • relationships & trust with other agents built over time.  Negotiations will run more smoothly.
  • professional photography & floorplans to make it easier for Buyers to see your home along with Social media
  • neighbourhood & building knowledge-we've spent a lot of time in them!

It means we bring something extra to selling your home & getting the best possible price.  Experience counts!

Read full post

Those January numbers arrived in my mailbox early this morning.

The total number of listed homes on MLS in Metro Vancouver is down 31.8% compared to January/21.  Of course each area of Metro is a little different & sales to listing ratio for single family homes is lower than townhomes which are highest.  Condos fall in the middle so it may be easier to find a home to buy than a townhouse, depending on where you live.

What might change in the next few months?

  • interest rates are going up so some Buyers might not find it worthwhile to make a move now
  • more sellers tend to think of a "spring" market & usually listings do begin to pick up beginning in March
  • snowbirds, at least those that did head south this year, come back in the Spring.  If they have any plans to sell, they'll do it in the Spring.
  • some of those Sellers sitting for months with unrealisting pricing will decide to be more flexible on price, at least they will if they truly want to sell.

There is hope for Buyers; we just have to be patient :)

Read full post

to have a look at your mortgage interest rate.  We've been warned-interest rates will be going up.  What can you do about that?  

If you're a Buyer still searching for you new home, you can check with your bank or mortgage broker to find out how you can update your rate hold to secure the lowest rate for the longest period of time.  We know it takes a while to find a new home with the current low level of listings. Typically lenders hold rates for 60-90 days so find out how can you make the most of a rate hold.  

While you're speaking with your rep, you could also discuss fixed versus a variable mortgage.  What best suits your needs?  In today's Globe & Mail Business, Robert McLister wrote about the 2 mortgage products.

There are a lot of good reasons to go with a variable & the best one is that the variable wins over the next 5 years.

Always stay in touch with your mortgage rep.  They're busy so may not reach out to you, but most will be happy to discuss your needs, what you can expect in the next couple of months, & what can be done to secure the lowest possible rate.

Read full post

Sellers often think of Spring & Fall markets as being the best time to sell their homes.  That used to be true!

Because there are now more factors driving real estate, the best time to sell is based on market conditions.  What are those?

Market conditions can be 1 or more of interest rates, supply vs demand, weather, school cutoff dates for registration, geographical location, & now of course, CoVid.

What seems to be universally true are a couple of these.  We don't have enough supply for the demand which has been the case for some time, interest rates will be going up sooner rather than later so the Buying dollar won't go as far, & CoVid has actually increased demand for homes now that we have to spend so much time in them.

All we know is what we know to be true now so interest rates haven't changed, there is huge demand for all types of homes, & listings are at an historic low.  Is there a better time to sell?

Read full post

It's hard to avoid the subject of real estate, no matter where you live.  With so much information coming at you, it's overwhelming, especially if you've been away from it for a while or you're new to it..

Does it have to be?  Not really.

What's the trick?  A couple of helpful tools for Buyers & Sellers:

  • Harder than it sounds but try to stay focussed.  It's NEED TO KNOW, not NICE TO KNOW. For example, if you're going to be listing your home, focus on the latest  news on your type of home & your neighbourhood, NOT others.
  • establish a timeline-Buyers.  Have your agent walk you through the steps of Buying, starting from lender pre approval through making an offer to closing & possession.
  • establish a timeline-Sellers.  You'll want to know the steps & timing from signing the listing contract through photography & floor plans to how showings & offers will be done.     
These are just a couple of ways that the stress & surprises of real estate can be reduced for Buyers & Sellers.  Knowledge gives you power over your situation,. & having an experienced & patient Smile  agent on your side helps-a lot.
Read full post
The data relating to real estate on this website comes in part from the MLS® Reciprocity program of either the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB) or the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board (CADREB). Real estate listings held by participating real estate firms are marked with the MLS® logo and detailed information about the listing includes the name of the listing agent. This representation is based in whole or part on data generated by either the REBGV, the FVREB or the CADREB which assumes no responsibility for its accuracy. The materials contained on this page may not be reproduced without the express written consent of either the REBGV, the FVREB or the CADREB.