When you plan to take a journey somewhere, you hope it will be smooth sailing all the way. That simply means the trip will be relatively trouble-free, and without stress or hassles.

Well, selling your property is like a journey. So, how do you ensure that adventure will be “smooth sailing” for you?

While no one can guarantee there won’t be a challenge or two to overcome on the road to selling your home, there are proven ways to help ensure everything goes well.

First of all, preparation goes a long way toward having a successful sale. Start early. Make a list of what you need to do around your property to get it ready for buyers. That list will include cleaning and tidying, of course. But, you might also need to get some minor repairs done, and perhaps even a few upgrades (such as painting or a new kitchen sink.)

Don’t wait until the last minute if you’ll need a contractor to do those repairs or upgrades. Find and book a professional now.

Second, take the time to fully understand the selling process and what to expect. Don’t be shy about asking questions. For example, if it’s been a while since you last sold a home, you might need to refresh your understanding of how scheduling works for viewings, what staging is all about, how offers are received and considered, etc.

The better you understand the selling process, the more comfortable you’ll feel.

Thirdly, and most importantly, give me a call early in the process. I can offer the advice and help you need to sell your property quickly and for the best price. I can also make your selling adventure go smoothly and successfully.

In other words, if you want “smooth sailing”, call me!

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If you're like most people, you hope that you’ll receive your online orders within a few days. Sure, a purchase might occasionally arrive later than expected. That's just the reality of online shopping.

But, what if you need an item delivered quickly, without risk of delay?

Here are a few suggestions:

• Check if the product is in stock. That's usually indicated on the web page, but you can also phone to confirm. In-stock items usually ship quickly.

• Avoid special orders. Those always take longer to ship.

• If possible, find out if the product is coming from overseas. The longer the supply chain, the higher the likelihood of delays.

• Find out if in-store pickup is available. Retailers ship to their stores faster than they do to their customer's homes.

• Avoid ordering from a "bricks and mortar" store that doesn't sell very much online. If online ordering and delivery is merely a sideline for them, delays will likely be common.

• If possible, order from companies that promise a specific date or date range for delivery. For example, "Arrives by May 5."

Getting online orders delivered on time is especially important for items you need when preparing your home for sale. If that's the case for you, call today for more ideas.

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Imagine you've been waiting for the right moment to sell your home and you're finally ready to pull the trigger and list it. But, just as you're about to put up the sign, you notice that a few other FOR SALE signs have unexpectedly popped up in the neighbourhood.

Oh no! Now there are competing listings. Does that mean you should put your plan to sell your property on hold?

Not necessarily.

Just because comparable homes are for sale in the area doesn't mean it's not a good time to make your move. In fact, even if there is a sharp increase in local listings, active buyers might still outnumber properties available.

In that scenario, you'd likely get several interested buyers.

And, even in the case of a buyer's market, now might still be the ideal time to sell. Don't forget, your home might have desirable features that some buyers are eagerly looking for, giving your home the advantage over others on the market.

In addition, a large part of a successful sale is in how a property is marketed and promoted. With effective marketing, your home is more likely to be noticed by the right type of buyers... buyers who are actively looking for a property like yours.

So, waiting for the perfect moment to sell your home rarely makes sense. In most cases, the best time to list is now.

That being said, it is helpful to find out exactly what to expect should you list your property in today's market. To find that out, call today.

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Spring cleaning can seem like a great idea until you actually get started. Then it often turns out to be more work than expected!

The good news is, there are proven techniques to make the job easier so you can get it done faster.

• Before you begin the project, make sure you have everything you need: hammer, boxes, tape, garbage bags, etc. Think of the supplies you’ll need on hand and the tools that will make tasks easier. You don’t want to have to waste time on frequent trips to the store.

• Consider renting a small moving trolley (AKA hand truck.) That will make it much easier to move heavy objects, such as furniture, as you’re cleaning. Most local home improvement centres rent these.

• Plan how you’re going to dispose of waste and unwanted stuff. Find out where you can donate clothes, toys, furniture, and other items. Note the location of your local garbage disposal site and its hours of operation.

• Divide tasks into “Heavy work” and “Light work” and then do the heavy work first, such as moving furniture, reorganizing rooms, etc. Only after completing the heavy work should you dive into the “light work”, such as packing boxes and sweeping.

• Consider getting help. There are many services available that will assist with cleaning, painting, junk removal, repairs, and more. You can even hire a student to assist you for a weekend.

Spring cleaning can be a big project, but these tips can help make it a lot easier. And, keep in mind that if you’re thinking of selling this year, getting the spring cleaning done will be a big plus.

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When you set a budget for a new home, you’re obviously hoping — maybe even expecting — to find the ideal property within that price range.

But, it doesn’t always work out that way.

In fact, there are many circumstances in which you might have to rethink your budget and possibly even increase it, to get the home you want.

For example, you might find that properties in neighbourhoods you’re targeting are selling for more than you expected. In that circumstance, you might have to look for a home in a different area, or see if you can bump up your budget.

Another scenario that often comes up is changing wish lists. You may view a few homes for sale and realize that a particular feature is more important to you than you initially thought. For example, you might have budgeted for a three-bedroom home, but once you’ve seen a few properties with four, you think, “Okay, we definitely want four bedrooms!” That might result in a budget bump.

Finally, you might find that you view a property and fall in love with the place. It’s perfect. It has everything you need. You’ve got to have that home! But, its price is outside your budget.

In that case, you’ll need to weigh paying a bit more against getting a home that will have a significant and positive impact on your lifestyle and happiness.

As you can see, there’s a lot to consider when shopping for a home and trying to stay within a budget.  If you're wondering if you need to "bump your budget" to get what you're looking for, contact me to discuss!

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When searching for a new home, many buyers will focus only on the list price and what they may need to offer to get the property. For example, a buyer might think, “We can get this house for $XX. That’s within our price range!”

Of course, the selling price plays the pivotal role in whether or not you can afford a particular home. But, carrying costs should also be considered.

Carrying costs include any regular expenses related to the property. The obvious ones are gas, hydro, water, garbage, and taxes. But there may be others. For example, a home may also have a subscription-based alarm system, high-speed internet, and hot water tank rental.

If you're buying a condominium, there are commen element fees to take into account.

It’s also smart to factor in predicted maintenance and repair costs, especially when buying an older home. A property that hasn’t had its asphalt roof shingles replaced in 20 years may be due soon.

In Manitoba, land transfer tax (LTT) can add thousands to the cost of purchasing.

So, when shopping for a new home, consider what the carrying costs will be. That will help you make a more informed decision.

That being said, having to pay a little more in monthly costs may be worth it if you love the place and it (as well as the neighbourhood) has everything you want.

Contact me today to find out how much you should budget in regards to carrying costs when purchasing your new home!

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Imagine you want to take the “trip of a lifetime” this fall. Would you leave it until the summer to start planning, booking dates, and generally getting ready?

Probably not. A trip like that is a big deal. You’d want to start making arrangements now, so by the time you’re ready to go to the airport, everything will be set for you and your family to have a great time.

The same is true when selling your home. If you intend on listing your property in the spring or summer, now is the time to start making plans.

Starting the process early in the year gives you four significant advantages:

1. Ample time to prepare your home. Starting now gives you time to declutter your property, get needed repairs done, and otherwise make your home ready to be seen by buyers.

2. Less stress. Unless you enjoy scrambling to get things done within a tight timeline, you want to give yourself as much time as possible to prepare for your home sale without the stress of a tight timeline. Starting early gives you that.

3. Listing date flexibility. Starting now means you’ll likely get your property prepared for the sale early in the year. Sure, your plan might be to list in the summer. But, if the market changes or some other opportunity presents itself, you’ll be able to list sooner. Your home will be ready.

4. More time to find your next home. If you’ll also be looking for a new home, starting the process now will give you more time to explore neighbourhoods, get financing arranged, and determine the ideal type of home for you.

As you can see, it pays to start the process now, even if you won’t be selling until summer or fall.  Contact me today to get the process started!

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When you’re selling your home, you may find buyers who want to see it later in the evening, when it’s dark outside. In that circumstance, effective home lighting becomes more important.

The best place to start is with exterior lighting. If you have soft ground lamps on the walkway, make sure those are turned on. That will make for a more pleasant and inviting trip up the walkway.

Do you have motion detection lighting? Make sure those are set to continuous lighting. It can be jarring for a buyer to be hit with an unexpected beam of bright light when walking to your door.

Also, check the brightness of exterior lights. If they are bordering on blinding, replace the bulbs with lower wattage options.

Inside the home, keep curtains and other window coverings open. Although it may be dark outside, an unobstructed window will help make the room seem more inviting and spacious.

Turn on your full lighting system in the backyard. Make that outdoor space enticing for buyers to check out.

If you have dark areas in your home, such as a basement room or walk-in closet, explore ways to light it better.

Overall, you want the lighting to help buyers see and appreciate the best qualities of your property.

Want more advice on selling your home? Contact me today.

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There are numerous reasons why you might need to sell early in the year. Perhaps you even need to sell this month! Whatever your reasons, preparation is key. Make the right moves now and your sale is likely to go smoothly and successfully.

Follow these tips:

1. Make a list of what needs to be done around the property to prepare it for listing. That includes decluttering, cleaning, getting needed repairs done, and so forth.

2. Schedule those tasks. On a calendar or planner, block out ample time to do everything on your list. Give yourself a time buffer because things can often take longer to do than expected.

3. Get help. You don’t need to do everything yourself. Consider hiring a painter, contractor, cleaning service, and other professionals. Outsourcing can reduce a lot of the stress of selling while ensuring your property is prepared in time.

4. Dispose of unwanted items that may have accumulated over the years in the garage, basement, and closets. You can have a yard sale, sell stuff online, donate items to charity, or take them to your local recycling centre.

5. Free up your schedule during the period you expect your property to be on the market. You want your home to be accessible for showings as often as possible, giving prospective buyers a lot of flexibility when scheduling.

The idea is to get your property as “sales-ready” as possible — as early in the year as possible. That way, when it comes time to list your home, you won’t have to scramble to get it ready. The hard work will be done and you’ll be able to focus on selling your property quickly and for the best price. Want more tips on preparing your home for sale? Contact me today!

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Throughout the history of journalism, reporters would pride themselves on getting the “inside scoop” on a story. In fact, that’s where that expression came from.

So imagine you’re shopping for a new home and click on a listing online. Up comes all the property information. But, chances are, there is more to the story of that property than is presented in that listing. For example, you might want to know more about:

• The empty field behind the home.

• The addition that was added to the house. (Was it professionally done?)

• What the neighbourhood is really like.

• The age of the roof shingles. (Will they need to be replaced soon?)

• Noise levels on weekends.

• Upcoming new development that might change the character of the area.

Most property information listed on MLS and elsewhere is incomplete. There’s almost always more to the story of a listing than you can find online.

And, even after viewing a listed property, you may still have lingering questions or concerns.

So, you’ll want to get the “inside scoop” and find out more.

But how?

To get the inside scoop on a listing, contact me. I can get the additional information you need on a property so that you can make a more informed decision.

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