Karen Hayes: (250) 927-9798 | Susie Mattner: (250) 228-1960 | sold@teamw.ca

Vancouver Island Real Estate News from TeamW - Rudi Widdershoven - January 2014

  Vancouver Island Real Estate News from TeamW - Rudi Widdershoven January 2014   

Happy New Year!  Yes 2014 is already well underway. How did that happen?

We had a great Christmas with all of the family in Langley, very busy times and some quiet times. We had the pleasure of visiting my brother in Maple Ridge as well. The family decided this year rather than more 'stuff' as gifts we were to come up with "experiences". 2014 will be very interesting: we will be doing a Widdershoven/McLean Amazing Race, a "Vancouver Canadians" baseball game at Nat Bailey Stadium, (the whole family), a boys fishing charter, a girls spa outtting, family movie and pizza night, cooking & crafts with the grand girls, a trip to Newfoundland for Trish & I and the list goes on.  It will be a great year of new family experiences!

Through the last month of 2013 and 1st month of 2014 we have been active 5 deals since Dec 27th!  It certainly looks like 2014 will be a balanced market with more activity in general. We are feeling very positive about the market in general!

Also watch for next month's announcelent of changes in TeamW :) Positive news!!

Thanks so much for checking out this month's newsletter.  Please get in touch if you have any questions or comments regarding the articles, or real estate in general -- We would love hear from you!

Thanks for your support!
Rudi & Trish W.
In this issue...
Solid Sales in 2nd Half Lead to Strongest Market Activity in 4 Years
How to Get the Most Out of Us... as Your Agents!
No More Wallpaper Woes
New Year, New Attitude

Solid Sales in 2nd Half Lead to Strongest Market Activity in 4 Years 

Sales activity across the Vancouver Island housing market area finished on a high note in December, capping off the strongest year since 2009.

After a sluggish  2012, sales picked up some steam in the second half of 2013, resulting in a stronger finish to the year than was anticipated a few months ago. The Vancouver Island Real Estate Board (VIREB) reports a total of 3,941 single-family homes sold in the VIREB coverage area on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in 2013. (This is all of Vancouver Island "north of the Malahat"). This is 10% increase over the 3,582 sales recorded in 2012.  Average sale price remained relatively flat for the year, decreasing by one per cent.
BCREA’s chief economist, Cameron Muir, is cautiously optimistic heading into the new year, but warns that low employment growth and a listless economy will likely have some impact on the BC housing market heading into 2014.  “We anticipate that slow economic growth will lead to a slight retrenchment in demand through the first quarter of 2014, but expect that sales will pick up momentum in the latter half of the year”.

A total of 605 single-family homes sold in the greater Parksville Qualicum Beach area in 2013.  This is a 18 % increase over 2012.  This volume is above the 5 year average of 587 sales and yet significantly below the 10 year average of 663.

We agree with VIREB president, Gary Gray when he stated  “We are encouraged by this healthy sales activity, but the market is still quite price sensitive, so it is important to consult with a local REALTOR® in order to get a clear picture of what is happening in your area.”

In 2013 there were 11% less properties that came to market and at the end of the year the active inventory was down 18% from the end of 2012. As a result there is not a lot of choice for buyers and so it is a good time to come on the market. If you are thinking of a change in 2014 there are active buyers looking for the right property. Please connect with us & we can discuss your particular situation so you can make an informed decision as to what you may wish to do and when.

How to Get the Most Out of Us... as Your Agents! 

The relationship between you and your real estate agent should always be open, honest and productive.  Having an open line of communication is absolutely critical to ensuring a win-win partnership!

Once you’ve discussed and agreed on your agency relationship, start working on how you can communicate effectively.  Communication is a two-way street so both parties need to be honest at the outset.

Please help us by starting with the basics. Let us know your contact preferences. Phone, email or text message? Be clear on times you can be contacted, should your dream home suddenly hit the market. At work or on vacation? How late can we call for a showing request?  Clarifying these somewhat obvious details ahead of time will mean fewer miscommunications, which is helpful for everyone involved.

Be clear on what you feel is a "must" in your new home.  Ranking your priorities will help us "get it right" when we are doing a search; however, try to keep an open mind as it may be a good idea to “look outside the box” at homes that don’t completely match your criteria. Sometimes we come up with a home that seems crazy and ends up being "perfect".

If you're selling your home, make sure you discuss any issues that could help or hinder the sale. We can offer great advice on staging as Trish is an "ASP" accredited staging professional, so show us everything no matter how insignificant. That tiny crawl space you weren't even thinking of mentioning could be marketed as a unique selling feature! Please don't be upset with staging advice, it is not about how you live, its about selling your home!

Finally, let us know if your needs change and don't ever hesitate to ask questions.There are no "bad" or "dumb" questions, we welcome them all.  If for whatever reason you're not satisfied with the way things are going, be upfront and honest so we can resolve any issues straight away.

The key to any strong relationship is communication.  The partnership between us will hopefully continue for many years after you land your dream home!  We want to be your realtors for life, so no matter where you are thinking about buying or selling we may be able to be help. Please don’t ever hesitate to email or call with any real estate related questions you may have. 

No More Wallpaper Woes 

If you've finally had enough of the dated, floral wallpaper in your hallway, then it’s time to take action!

Removing wallpaper isn’t always easy but it’s well worth the effort.  Here are a few environmentally friendly solutions that are just as effective as steamers and toxic removal paste:

  1. Fabric Softener - Fill a spray bottle with a 50/50 mixture of fabric softener and hot water and apply to the wallpaper. (Downey works best from my experience).

  2. Vinegar - Mix equal parts of white vinegar and hot water.  Use a paint roller or large brush to apply the solution onto your wallpaper.

  3. Dishwashing Liquid - Mix 1 part dishwashing liquid and 3 parts warm water.  It must be a dishwashing liquid that uses a "degreaser".

Once the wallpaper’s been removed, wash the walls with warm water and let them dry thoroughly before prepping them to be painted.  If you do it right, wallpaper can easily be removed so if your dream home’s covered in it, don’t let it deter you from putting in an offer!
We also know a great handyman service, (who happen to be our clients, new to the area) and they do wallpaper removal as well! Just ask us for their names. They do bathrooms too, they just finished the 2nd bath reno for us and we are very happy with their work!

New Year, New Attitude 

The New Year provides us with an opportunity to plan a fresh new start with a powerful new attitude.

Reading inspirational quotes can help keep our thoughts positive even though the media continuously bombards us with negative stories which can bring us down. Here are a couple to get you started:
“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity.  An optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”   
Winston Churchill

"You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.
C.S. Lewis

There are many websites that send daily motivational quotes. 
We enjoy TUT.com for sure!

If you post them on your fridge, mirrors & computer screen,
they’ll remind and inspire you to stay positive throughout the  whole year!

Have a great 2014!!

PS Oh by the way, I am never too busy for any of your introductions.  If you know of anyone that may benefit from my help please contact me with their name and number and let them know that I will be in touch . I would be privileged to assist them!

If you would like to keep up on the market and would like automatic email notifications of new listings, sales, etc. Click here or drop us an email or give us a call:  250-248-1071 / team@teamw.ca

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TeamW - Susie Mattner & Karen Hayes
TeamW at Royal LePage Parksville - Qualicum Beach Realty
679 Memorial Avenue
Qualicum Beach, BC
V9K 1T4 CA

MLS® property information is provided under copyright© by the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board and Victoria Real Estate Board. The information is from sources deemed reliable, but should not be relied upon without independent verification.