The clocks have sprung forward and spring has sprung with many days of sunshine & temperatures between 10 & 18 degrees. Where does the time go?
We have had the pleasure of a continuing very interesting market as well as some down time, & family time. We enjoyed a week-long "staycation". We spent 3 wonderful nights in Tofino at Long Beach Lodge Resort, & did a wonderful flight over the west coast. We experienced Twin City Brewing Company in Port Alberni and enjoyed time at home for the balance of the week. We also had the pleasure of having a Herring Fishery opening at our door step and then a 4 night visit from our daughter-in-law & 6 year old grandson with incredible weather and two kayak outings, & some beach walks.
In a couple of weeks it will be Easter and we are looking forward to the entire family coming for a visit. We hope that you will also enjoy some special time with friends and family over the long weekend.
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 -or any of the upcoming changes- it'd be great to hear from you!
Your friends in Real Estate
Rudi & Trish W.
Vancouver Island Real Estate Market Update
For Pets Sake, Don't Soil Your Sale
Fast and Furious Decluttering
|"The only thing that is constant is change." Heraclitus - greek philospher 535 to 475 BC and even to this day he is correct.
We are seeing lots of changes in the rules for real estate transactions & taxes for real estate in B.C.. The Superintendent of Real Estate decided a need to make new rules for real estate licensees that will change the way a real estate professional can provide service to you, the consumer. To see and follow the changes click here to see the information direct from the Real Estate Council of British Columbia. We believe some of this is a knee-jerk reaction to a very small number of transactions. The 2 % rule, (they create laws & rules for the 2% of bad actors that the media tends to focus on). Some of this is good for the public and we are in favor of consumer protection, however, we find it offensive that the government thinks that you, the consumer, cannot make well-informed decisions.
Plus the Provincial Government has decided to implement a new tax, "speculation tax", for real estate holdings other than principal residences - and yes there will be an implication to BC residents with more than one property. It could even affect people with rental investment property, which of course will drive up rents and reduce supply.As we get to learn what the actual changes will be and what impact they may have, we will let you know. At this time there is still lots of confusion and no clarity, even for the elected representatives. Stay tuned as time progresses and we get some clarification on both changes.
If you have a challenge with any of the proposed changes we hope that you will let the legislators know that this is not necessarily what you want and make your voices heard. Please contact your MLAasap, if the public doesn't voice their displeasure over this legislation the tax will go ahead.
|VANCOUVER ISLAND REAL ESTATE MARKET UPDATE
|Buoyant Vancouver Island sellers’ market continues.
The statistics for market activity have been released by VIREB (Vancouver Island Real Estate Board) and certainly continue to show lack of inventory and strong demand.
With regards to Single Family Homes so far this year, in comparison to same period in 2017, there have been 12% less listings and as a result 12% less sales. The Active inventory at the end of February was 18% less than February 2018 and the Average Sales Price is up 26% ($616,128 vs $490,371).
With regards to Patio Homes there were 16% more listings (22 vs 19) and number of sales are up 13%. Active inventory is down 10% and the Average Sales Price is up 25% ($446,218 vs $377,193) over the same time last year. You can access the statisical summary report here
Also BCREA (British Columbia Real Estate Association) has released their updated Housing Forecast which is indicating that there will be 10.8% less residential sales on Vancouver Island (Malahat north) in comparison to 2017 and the average sale prices will increase by 7.6%. Which indicates lack of supply and strong demand will continue throughout the year.
The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) notes that the housing market in B.C. is still thriving due to the province’s strong economy. However, BCREA forecasts some economic headwinds for 2018. It appears that Guideline B-20 – also known as the mortgage stress test – lay behind December’s uptick in sales as buyers scrambled to purchase before its January 1 implementation.
Other risk factors include rising interest rates and new taxes introduced by the provincial government in the latest B.C. budget. Broadening the scope of the Foreign Buyer Tax to include the Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN) will not have a significant impact on the VIREB housing market. Only 4.4 per cent of RDN residential real estate transactions in 2017 involved foreign buyers. More troubling is the new speculation tax, which targets homeowners who do not pay income tax in B.C., including those who leave their homes empty but still contribute heftily to the economy.
Kaye Broens, VIREB President-Elect, believes the speculation tax is well-intended, but the government is focusing on the wrong side of the housing equation. “Instead of increasing supply, the B.C. government is concentrating on dampening demand,” says Broens. “Vancouver Island is a popular destination for retirees, many of whom come from Alberta, and the speculation tax could discourage many of those buyers.”
“My advice to prospective sellers is to contact a REALTOR® to list their home now and not wait until spring,” says Broens. “Prices are still rising, but that cannot continue indefinitely. At some point, buyers will begin bowing out of the market due to affordability issues.”
If you wish further details or wish to discuss your current real estate situation contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 250-468-1498.
FOR PETS SAKE, DON'T SOIL YOUR SALE
|Make sure your pets don’t become a buyer’s pet peeve.
It's important to present a top-notch first impression when selling your home. If you share your home with pets though, you'll need to work extra hard to ensure it looks (and smells) its best!
Although you consider your pets part of the family, potential buyers will likely view them as a smelly nuisance. If you own pets, here are a few tips that will help when it comes time to sell your home:
- Deep Clean - Steam clean all carpets, rugs and couches and be sure to vacuum your home every day.
- Do the Doo Doo - Don't forget to clean up outside before showings as people exploring your garden will be turned off by seeing it or even worse, stepping in it.
- Gone to the Dogs - Most people don't want to be greeted by a barking dog when they enter a home. A whining dog in a crate is also a huge distraction so take Fido out for a walk if you're unable to make other arrangements.
- Creepy Critters - Some buyers may be too scared to tour a room that contains pets such as snakes,reptiles or rodents. They may even decide to leave your home altogether so try and remove any creepy creatures before putting your home on the market.
- Fur Real - Clean pet hair out from under the stove, tables, blinds and all crevices. Aside from its unsightly appearance, many people suffer from allergies and you don't want them sniffling and sneezing while they're viewing your home.
- Scratch the Surface - You're probably so used to your scratched and chewed up furniture that you don't even notice, but buyers will. Inspect your home thoroughly and repair scratched areas including window frames, doors, furniture and floors.
- Breathe Easy - Few smells are as offensive as those associated with animals. Buyers will be exploring the basement so make sure any litter trays are clean. Open up windows and simmer a few cinnamon sticks in water as buyers may be allergic to artificial scents.
It's also important to declutter your home before showings, so don't forget to clear away most pet beds, feeding bowls and toys from both inside and outside your home. Even animal lovers will be put off by the hair, smell and mess that pets can make so take these tips into account to ensure your furry friends don't soil your sale!
FAST AND FURIOUS DECLUTTERING
|Decluttering your home doesn’t have to take all day.
Research suggests that cluttered homes cause stress and anxiety. Sometimes it’s hard to know where to start so here are 5 ways to conquer your clutter in less than 5 minutes!
- Clutter Chaos- Grab 3 bins and walk through your home.1 is for donating to charity. 1 is for move to its "rightful spot", and 1 is for garbage.
- The Junk Drawer - Throw out trash and then find a permanent home for everything else.
- Medicine Cabinet - Check for expired items & dispose of them through your neighbourhood Pharmacy.
- Tupperware Toss - Clear up space by going through your Tupperware drawer and recycle anything that doesn’t have a mate.
- Linen closet- go through and get rid of old towels, sheets & bedding that don't match or you dont use & donate to your local SPCA.They always need bedding & sheets!
Try to always be on the lookout for items you no longer use. It will free up valuable space! Decluttering can make a huge impact on our lives because an uncluttered home will promote peace and calm plus if you decide to sell it will make the whole process easier.