Posted: November 20th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Edmonton Real Estate | Tags: how to outfit your home before selling, selling your home in the winter in Edmonton, staging your home, when is the best season to sell your home | No Comments »
When it’s winter in Edmonton, Alberta, the weather outside is cold, and some people choose to delay the home selling process until spring/summer, when there is often a spike in home sales. However, working with an experienced realtor, and being creative with your home staging techniques can help you sell your home regardless of the season.
Depending on when you put your home on the market, there are some things to consider to project “maximum curb appeal” during the weeks or months it’s for sale. Obviously, you’d like to sell the house for the highest price possible, which means you have to optimize the appearance of your home.
Generally, no matter the geography or weather, homes sell well in the spring, with people moving in and out during the summer. Spring’s a great time for people to look at houses, as the trees are getting back their leaves, flowers are sprouting up on the property, and there’s a shared sense of “new beginnings” in-the-air after a cold, snowy winter.
If you do decide to sell a home in the spring or summer, invest in your front yard landscaping to make it look its best. If there are any dead trees or plants, remove and replace them before putting the “for sale” sign up. Add pretty flowers to the yard if possible, with some tastefully placed flowerpots spread around to make your home look inviting. Cut the grass, make sure the gutters are cleaned out and secure to the building, and perhaps do some touch-up painting, too. Treat your house’s exterior like a first date—“dress to impress.”
During the cooler fall months, like October and November, add seasonal decorations outside your home, like pumpkins and gourds. In December, some smartly-placed holiday lights and seasonal front lawn decorations can beautify your place. Even though the weather is colder, that doesn’t mean you should neglect the front yard—rake up leaves when possible and dispose of them. If you have stuff accumulating on the driveway or in the yard— like mud, toys, car parts, machinery, garbage or wood—clean it up, move it out, throw it out, or store it elsewhere so the driveway doesn’t look dirty and the yard doesn’t look messy upon first glance.
In the Edmonton area, real estate agent Alexis Hlady can help you figure out how to “seasonally improve” your home’s exterior to look its best and get it sold.
Posted: November 18th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Edmonton Real Estate, Home Buyers | Tags: lower credit score, Reduce mortgage rates, tips for obtaining a favorable mortgage, tips for reducing your credit score | No Comments »
The overwhelming majority of homeowners rely on help from a lender when purchasing a home, often in the form of mortgage. Consequently, it is essential for prospective homebuyers to have a strong credit score to not only apply for a mortgage; but also to obtain their mortgage at favorable rates.
A credit score is based on a variety of factors, including your history of paying off debts; how much debt you owe; the length of your credit history; the type of credits owed and if you have any recent credits. The tracking process begins the first time you took out a credit card, or borrowed money in the form of a car or student loan, for example.
Fortunately, there are several tactics prospective homeowners can do to improve their credit score before they begin the process of purchasing a home. Let’s take a look at 4 ways you can improve your credit score and receive a favorable mortgage rate.
1) Always try to pay your bills on time, but if you have fallen behind on payments, try to get up to date on the unresolved debt. Failing to do so could lead to collection agencies calling you, and the longer you allow the issue to stem, the worse off you will be. Delinquent payments will always be part of your credit history; however, it won’t be as glaring as time moves on. Alternatively, not taking care of the issue will leave the omission near the top of your history, which will surely scare off some lenders.
2) Do not close off your credit card accounts. When people get in trouble with a credit card, they often pay off their debt, then choose to close the card in order prevent another slip up. However, keeping the card, with a “0” balance can actually help improve your credit score. Also, keep in mind to always try to keep your monthly credit card balances as low as possible, as high balances could adversely affect your score.
3) Try to avoid opening several new credits in short timeframe. Less is more, as you want to show you are on top of your credit, and several new credits will likely harm your score.
4) If you request a copy of your credit report, be sure to meticulously examine it, as there could be an error that is unjustly hurting your score. Plus, taking a close look at your score will ensure you are not a victim of identity fraud, or a victim of a company taking advantage of you.
This is just a small snippet of tips that can help you improve your credit score. Taking swift action and formulating a plan can help you save a ton of money the next time you need a loan, especially if you plan on one day being a homeowner. For a better idea of what those savings could entail, take a look at the infographic below.
Posted: October 28th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Alberta, Canada Real Estate, Edmonton, Edmonton Area News, Edmonton Real Estate | Tags: Alberta real estate news, economic conditions of Edmonton, Edmonton real estate news, homes for sale in edmonton, residential homes for sale in Edmonton, residential real estate in Edmonton | No Comments »
Recently, there was an article in the Calgary Herald that proclaimed the city of Edmonton has ousted Calgary as the top Alberta market to invest in residential real estate. The study was conducted by the Real Estate Invesment Network, and their findings are another symbol of Edmonton’s promising growth.
In addition to surpassing Calgary in the current marketplace, forecasters are predicting strong things for Edmonton real estate in the short and long-term. In fact, Don Campbell, a senior analyst from the Real Estate Invesment Network thinks Edmonton (and Calgary) could be the economic leaders of Canada the next couple of years. Edmonton is not just rising the charts against competition in Alberta; it’s rising the charts against competition from the entire country.
Assumingly, there is a plethora of factors that led to Edmonton’s top showing. For starters, the city has experienced tremendous economic growth in the recent past. There has been steady growth in the current business environment, and there are many projects on the horizon, which will create more advancement, and more importantly, help create more job opportunities.
Moreover, owning a home in Edmonton is more affordable than it is in any of the other six largest Canadian cites. A desirable blend of job opportunities and economical real estate options has made investing in Edmonton residential real estate a prudent endeavor.
Other factors that may have contributed to Edmonton’s top ranking could include the fact Edmonton has a myriad of reputable neighborhoods, a variety of entertainment options and many great schools. If you and your family have been looking for new opportunities, and a place to invest in real estate that will hold its long-term value, then Edmonton may be your ideal destination.
Posted: October 11th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Canada Real Estate, Edmonton, Edmonton Area News, Edmonton housing news, Edmonton Real Estate | Tags: buying a home in edmonton, homes for sale in edmonton, real estate agent in Edmonton, realtor in Edmonton | No Comments »
Researching different cities to live in is one of the most exciting, yet stressful endeavors of the home buying process. For some individuals and families, the decision of which city to live in is an easy one. Perhaps they are from and have family in a certain city, or they simply need to live in a given place because of their job. However, for those looking for a new opportunity, or a new adventure to embark on, selecting a city can be a complex decision.
For the majority of people, there are many factors and variables that go into the decision making process, the most obvious of which is your budget. A similarly built and sized house in your current location may be significantly more or less expensive than one in the city you are researching. Additionally, the overall cost of living, based on a myriad of expenses will vary from city. Make sure you can comfortably afford your monthly expenses, mortgage payments or rent before re-locating. It will prevent a ton of headaches, and drastically reduce your stress levels.
Next, and this one goes hand and hand with number one, you should thoroughly research the job prospects of the city you are interested in, assuming you don’t already have a job lined up. Things to look at would include the city’s unemployment rate, the number of businesses in the area that are part of your chosen field, and of course, you should scour all of the online resources available to look at current job openings.
Another important factor to look at would be the conditions of the local real estate market. If you are buying a house in what is quickly becoming known as a “ghost town,” then you will likely be dissatisfied with the outcome of your purchase. Ideally, you want to purchase a home in an area that is thriving. Doing so could lead to a nice profit down the road, if or when you choose to resell, assuming you stay on top of the upkeep of the home.
Other important factors to consider are family ramifications. If you currently have, or if you are planning to have children, then it is essential to scout out the school system, community activities and the different levels of healthcare in the city. Additionally, your own preferences should come into play. For example, if you love to ski, snowboard or ice skate, would it make much since to live in a tropical climate?
The city of Edmonton has been making news lately for being a city people have flocked to, thanks to a steady economy, low unemployment rates and housing that is affordable and conveniently located. It is certainly a good time to invest in real estate in Edmonton.
Posted: September 24th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Edmonton housing news, Edmonton Real Estate, Selling Home | Tags: buying a home in edmonton, homes for sale in edmonton, real estate agent in Edmonton, realtor in Edmonton, selling your home in Edmonton, the value of home renovations | No Comments »
When done correctly, home renovations can provide homeowners with both short and long-term benefits. In the short term, homeowners will be able to enjoy the upgrades in their residence on a daily basis. For example, if you choose to revamp your kitchen, you will surely enjoy the extra space when cooking. Or you will enjoy showing off your new countertops and cabinetry to friends and family when they come for a visit.
From a long-term perspective, many home renovations could ultimately pay for themselves if or when you choose to sell your home. The upgrades could earn you more money, and could allow you to set a higher asking price. Put simply, if you were in the market for a new home, wouldn’t you prefer to buy one that recently made upgrades?
That said, not all home renovations are created equal, making it essential that homeowners do their due diligence first. There are many variables that come into play, including your city, the financial median of homeowners in your neighborhood and current market trends. Ultimately, you want to do renovations that your potential market audience will value, and you should try to perform renovations that modernize your home, and will appeal to homeowners for years to come.
With that in mind, what are the current market trends? The infographic below will help you learn more, at least from a general perspective. Keep in mind to consider your own city and neighborhood trends when deciding the type of renovation you want to invest in.
Posted: September 11th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Selling Home | Tags: buying a home in edmonton, homes for sale in edmonton, real estate agent in Edmonton, realtor in Edmonton, staging your home in Edmonton | No Comments »
One of the most important aspects of selling your home is staging your residence to make a favorable first impression on prospective buyers. As the old adage goes, “a first impression leaves a lasting impression,” making it somewhat necessary for homeowners to adequately arrange their home for buyers.
Leave plenty of space – When it comes to staging your home, less is often more. De-cluttering will make rooms look bigger and more welcoming to a potential buyer. A crowded home can be overwhelming and confusing, so don’t hesitate to remove a substantial amount of furniture if you have the storage space.
Give an impression of newness – Decorate to dazzle, removing worn-down items in favor of newer pieces that convey a feeling of freshness. The initial excitement of a first impression can go a long way towards luring buyers in, so it’s important to add to this in any way you can.
Remove your personal stamp – No one will buy a home if they can’t imagine themselves living in it. Family photos and personal keepsakes are great, but buyers are going to want to feel at home. Let them imagine where they would put their own personal treasures in your home.
Appeal to all – No matter who does the decorating in your home, keep in mind that a sale may rely on the decision of an entire family. Pink walls and roses might sway one spouse and turn off another. Don’t forget about the kids! A little nagging from an excited child could work wonders.
Accessorize for luxury – When accessorizing, convince potential buyers that moving into your house can be a permanent vacation. Equip your home with all the bells and whistles of a five-star hotel room to mimic the comfort and convenience of a relaxing retreat.
Cleanliness is key – Simply put, make your home as attractive as it can be. Clean wherever possible, and remove or paint over any stains or permanent damage. Knowing that a home has been well maintained and cared for over the years will give potential buyers peace of mind.
If you are selling your home in Edmonton, and need help preparing your home for the market, then contact Alexis Homes Info today.
Posted: August 27th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Selling Home | Tags: homes for sale in edmonton, realtors for selling your home in Edmonton, the benefits of a realtor when selling your home, top real estate agent in Edmonton | No Comments »
In our previous blog post, we discussed the importance of using an experienced real estate agent during the home buying process. Today, we examine how a proficient realtor can help homeowners who wish to put their property on the market. Let’s take a look at 6 ways an agent can make your transaction a success.
1) A skilled real estate agent will know the pulse of the current market in your area. As such, they will know what similar homes sold for, and what a home in your neighborhood should be worth. This will help you set a practical price point, rather than setting the price too low, failing to maximize your asset’s value, or setting it to high, causing you to become frustrated at the lack of interest in your property. Which brings us to number two.
2) Realtors can shield you from many of the “just looking’’ people. The overwhelming majority of those people do not have any desire to potentially buy your home; instead, they are just interested in looking at different homes and seeing what properties are sold for, essentially making them “window shoppers.” A realtor often acts as a buffer, and only brings serious, qualified buyers to the attention of his or her clients. This prevents the client from wasting their time preparing and showing their home to disingenuous buyers.
3) An agent will properly market your home. They will know where to list your home, and will determine which tactics will work best to sell your home at the price you seek.
4) Agents will spot minor to major repairs that homeowners can rectify before showing their home. The augmentations will help you avoid losing money in the transaction over an issue that may not be overly expensive to repair.
5) Experienced real estate agents can use their negotiation prowess to get you the best deal possible. Often times, properties are not sold at the actual asking price. Thus, there will be a negotiation between both parties, and perhaps a couple of offers and counter offers. Having a skilled realtor on your side will ensure you don’t sell your home for less than you should, and will ensure you maximize the value of your largest asset.
6) Your real estate agent will take care of the voluminous amount of paperwork. Selling your home leads to a ton of paperwork and legal documents; however, a real estate agent can simplify things for you and make sure the proper documents are in place.
These are just some of the many benefits of consulting with a real estate agent before beginning the home selling process. Further, finding a trusted real estate agent could lead to a long-lasting relationship, as they could be the person you turn to any time you make a property transaction.
Posted: August 14th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Canada Real Estate | Tags: buying a home in edmonton, how a real estate agent can help a homebuyer, real estate advice, why you should use a real estate agent | No Comments »
The process of buying or selling home can often feel like arduous task, especially if it is your first time through. A great deal of research must be must done, and prospective buyers or sellers must calculate what their price point or price limit should be before jumping into a transaction they may later regret.
However, there is an easy way to avoid headaches and reduce stress: hire an experienced real estate agent. A proficient real estate agent can prove to be invaluable to both a buyer and seller, and can help them make a favorable investment or transaction. Today, let’s take a look at how prospective homebuyers can benefit from the expertise of an experienced real estate agent.
1) An experienced real estate agent can help a prospective buyer find the right home for their needs before the property ever hits the market. Some sellers prefer to put their home on the market privately, rather than in the public forum. As such, a real estate agent will have access to those homes, and one of them could be the perfect fit for you and your family.
2) Many realtors are shrewd negotiators. A realtor with experience will know when to ask for less than the asking price, and know what price point to come in at. This could end up saving you a ton of money, and any savings you can accrue after a large transaction will be a boon. Additionally, a good realtor will get you to the closing table in an efficient matter, which will help ensure you won’t lose out on a home you truly love.
3) Hiring a relator will prevent you from getting lost in a mountain of paperwork. Paperwork from a real estate transaction can be incredibly voluminous and confusing. Rather than attempting to tackle the problem on your own, a real estate agent can handle everything for you.
4) Realtors will have inside information in regards to the where the best neighborhoods and schools are in a certain area.
5) A knowledgeable real estate agent will provide an expert’s take on current market trends, allowing them to accurately gauge what a certain type of home should sell for, based on what similar homes sold for recently.
Most importantly, a real estate agent will help you avoid making a major mistake, and he or she will be readily available to answer any questions you may have. Few things are more crippling than making a poor real estate transaction, so having help from an expert is surely a prudent decision.
Posted by: Alexis Hlady
Posted: July 25th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Edmonton Condos | Tags: buying a condo vs a home, Edmonton condominiums, Edmonton Condos, home owners association | 1 Comment »
People are ready to buy, and those same people are always looking to find value in the property they decide on. In Edmonton, one type of property is doing better than the rest, and it is why you should buy a condo over a house. For a variety of reasons, a condominium is a great option and choice when it comes to owning your own home. Here’s a look at some of the things to consider when making your decision.
Mortgage – Contrary to public belief, lenders are there to help you. When you look to buy into a complex, they will help you figure out what type of environment it is. They look into the HOA (home owners association) reserve fund. They also look at the percentage of units occupied by owners as opposed to tenants. If something seems off, they won’t lend to you. The denial may be disappointing at first, but it actually will help you. They want you to find an economically viable property and area just as much as you do.
Cost – In general, a condo costs less than single family home. This also means property taxes and the monthly mortgage is less. HOA fees also cover costs like maintenance and landscaping and bring your costs down as well.
Maintenance Free – You should always value living comfortably. If you hate having to worry about house projects, landscaping and general upkeep of a property, a condo works for you. Many times a condo also has amenities you may not otherwise be able to afford: pools, hot tubs, picnic areas, playgrounds, etc.
Right now, Edmonton continues to excel for selling condos. According to the Edmonton Business Journal, “Condominiums were the biggest price gainers in June for the Edmonton region.”
“Economic conditions in the Edmonton area are generally positive and this is reflected in our local housing market,” said Realtors Association of Edmonton president Darrell Cook. “Prices have risen slowly through the first six months and there is nothing in our local economic trends to indicate that this period of stability will change.”
Post by Alexis Hlady
Posted: July 11th, 2013 | Author: alexis hlady | Filed under: Edmonton Area News | Tags: City of Edmonton, Economic Growth, largest growth canadian city | No Comments »
When you’re thinking of buying a home to support a family, you want to make sure that the area you’re moving to has plenty of economic opportunity. A growing economy is one of the most important factors to enjoying a high quality of life in any area.
Prospective homebuyers in Canada should know that the Edmonton area is experiencing a economic boom relative to other areas of the country. Statistics released by the Edmonton Economic Development Corporation show that the city of Edmonton is one of the fastest-growing economic areas in the country. In 2011, the city made the biggest economic gains of any large Canadian city. Edmonton’s 3.9% increase in gross domestic product (GDP) made it the fourth-fastest growing economy of any Canadian city. In fact, Edmonton’s economy is outpacing the entire economy for the province of Alberta (3.1% GDP increase) and Canada overall (2.1% GDP overall).
What does this mean for homeowners? Prospective buyers should know that now is a great time to purchase property within the city of Edmonton. A good economy generally causes housing prices to rise. Buying a house now is a great investment, as the value of these homes are prime to increase in the coming years.
A good local economy is also great for job opportunities. Edmonton’s low tax rates also mean that you can keep and use more of the income that you’ve earned.
More information on the Edmonton economy can be found here: http://www.edmonton.com/for-business/3349.aspx. If you want to check out market prices yourself, call Alexis Homes and we’ll be glad to let you know about great places to live in and around the city.
Post by Alexis Hlady