In the middle of the most challenging markets for Buyers - I am so happy that I could help my amazing clients - find their dream home. After months - and almost giving up when our previous offers were out-bid - and after an incredibly stressful few days waiting to hear - our offer was accepted!! I am so excited to welcome them home to this stunning Vancouver Downtown Penthouse...
What's the best Real Estate sector to Invest in right now?
As we've seen in the recent market stat's, some markets have seen significant change from last year, where others are holding strong - or have settled from a busy "Seller's Market" to a more "Balanced Market".
As many of you know - I am a straight-talker! I have built my business on integrity. Sometimes this may mean telling clients to "hold" - rather than sell. And other times, I can point out excellent investment opportunities.
So in a changing market, what real estate investments are worth holding? And which are good buys?
Well, that's where I can help! Email or call me to book a coffee meet up. Let's discuss your options! No pressure, no "spin", just the straight goods.
Fraser Valley October Stat's http://www.fvreb.bc.ca/statistics/october-brings-slight-bump-to-sales-for-fraser-valley/
Is Staging Worth the Bother ??
I recently had a friend ask me - honestly, is the cost of staging a home (and all the de-cluttering, organizing, and storage costs that go into it)... is it REALLY worth the bother? My answer is absolutely!
The increase in selling price - can be excellent. Usually a 1.5 - 3% increase in selling price!!
...But BEFORE you spend a penny on staging - you first have to start with the basics. If your home has an outdated or busy wallpaper - or an aging frayed carpet - well, no amount of staging is going to cover that up! So always start with: fresh, neutral paint; immaculate or new flooring; clean and de-clutter; and THEN work from there. You would be amazed how a cute shower curtain, or fresh clean towels, can even make a salmon pink bathtub look glamorous... For more - check out this article:
LIVE THE WATERFRONT DREAM! Interested in knowing what $1 Million buys you on the WATERFRONT on Vancouver Island? Check out these stunning new listings (click on property address for more photos/info)...and let me know what you think...
SARAH'S TOP PICKS:
Before you take the Ferry... let me show you a more efficient way to shop. I know what you are thinking! Why work with a White Rock/Langley Realtor (like me!) for information on Island properties? Well, firstly, I can provide you with an unbiased viewpoint and overview on all these communities - and important market data for each specific location. Potentially saving you many trips there to investigate on your own. I can also help you narrow down your search - and then find you a trusted realtor specializing in that neighbourhood to work with you in the location you choose.
In the meantime, to receive more updates like these... just email me at: email@example.com or text to 604-323-6759. Cheers!
Finally, after a long period of public consultation, Langley Township has finished Phase 2 of the Brookswood-Fernridge Community Plan Update.
The purpose of Phase 2 was to create a preliminary draft vision and set of guiding principles, which were then presented to community members for feedback.
The 13 Draft Guiding Principles listed below are the results of community feedback, and have closed Phase 2 of the Brookswood-Fernridge Community Plan.
Now into Phase 3 of the plan, it is anticipated that we will see something in writing soon, with finalization of all Phases expected by July 2017.
The Brookswood-Fernridge area has been designated for “Urban Growth” in the Township of Langley since as early as 1979. In 1987, Township Council adopted the official ‘Brookswood/Fernridge Community Plan’ that was designed to accommodate an ultimate projected population of 35,000.
The introduction of the new planning process is designed to be inclusive of community members, and engage members to be involved in updating the existing Community Plan adopted in 1987. The current update to the 1987 Community Plan will focus on undeveloped areas of the community.
Whether you live in the Brookswood-Fernridge area or are a savvy investor, I am sure you are anxious to see how this new plan will affect you, and what undeveloped areas will be the target of the new plan. Below are the area boundaries that will be impacted with community plan revisions.
For more info visit the Langley Township site http://www.tol.ca/Land-Use-and-Development/Communities-Neighbourhoods/Brookswood-Fernridge
Be part of the plan! The Township will be providing continued opportunities for feedback from the community throughout all five phases of the consultation. Stay up to date, stay connected.
I will continue to keep you all updated on the progress as we move through the remaining phases of the plan, and would love to hear your questions or comments.
Please feel welcome to contact me via phone or email;
Fraser Valley real estate is HOT, HOT, HOT.
Interestingly, the Langley City condo market seems to have a life of it's own these days.
August 2014 benchmark price was $227,700. And then dropped off drastically in Feb 2015 to $191,200. And is just starting to pick up again...
In my humble opinion I feel these drastic swings are because of the lack of new builds this year (to bolster the benchmark price) and the recent benchmark is now becoming more reflective of the older complexes in Langley City (many built in the 90's).
Any comments out there??
EARN $150,000 in one year? Flip this house!! The best deal I've seen in months is a new listing in Brookswood,Langley on a 10,000 sqft lot. Selling for $549,900...needs about $60-70,000 worth of work - and could be flipped next year (waver - guestimate here!!) for approximately high $770's. That's a profit of $150,100 (before closing costs) Here is the listing:
Many of you may know that I spend a great deal of my holiday time on a sunny beach on Thormanby Island near Sechelt on the Sunshine Coast of B.C. It is one of my favourite places on earth - for its remoteness and untouched natural beauty. The mainland communities (Secret Cove, Halfmoon Bay, Sechelt and Pender Harbour) can only be reached from Vancouver by BC Ferry. The remote nature of the communities means that employment is limited. And I was glad to see so many new jobs created by the many large construction projects by Wakefield Construction. Particularly the new and upscale Watermark condos on the Sechelt waterfront.
The community is now shocked to see Wakefield Construction declare bankruptcy...
Kim Darwin, president of the Sechelt and District Chamber of Commerce, said Wakefield’s closure, “will be a great loss to the community.” “The impact will surely be felt through the trickledown effect to sub-contractors, construction supply outlets and other local businesses. We sincerely hope that our other local construction companies will be in a position to fill some of the void that will be left as Wakefield exits the local construction scene,” Darwin said.
For more info go to:
Recently I received a question regarding two neighbouring properties in Brookswood, Langley.
One property would have been up for development under the new Brookswood/Fernridge Community Plan - and the other property would have been on the NO-development side.
In March 2014, the public submissions convinced the Council to vote down the New Brookswood/Fernridge Community Plan. Consequently, the existing Community Plan (that was adopted in 1987) would therefore continue to apply to the area.
So the question is...will these properties still be in future development areas? How will this affect their property values? Should they hope that the new updated plan (another one is in the works - to be discussed in 2015) will follow somewhat the same zone borders? The answer, from Langley Township, is that the borders of these development zones (as shown on the voted-down Plan) could very easily be changed in the future plan - and not to rely on them at all.
I will update you as soon as I hear anything more from Langley Township.
For more information just call: Langley Township,Community Development Division 604.533.6034.
Or give me a call anytime.
Cloverdale, Langley and South Surrey/White Rock - five year trends...
Check out this interactive chart (scroll over data points for monthly data) and you will see that the benchmark price of a detached home in South Surrey/White Rock in August 2010 was $733,600 and now in August, 2014 has increased to $901,900.
To view these stat's - Click Here!
After a nail-biting multiple offer situation, our offer was accepted! Listed for $749,000, we came in with a bid of $754,000 - and got it done! We just removed subjects on this terrific home at 19585 32nd Avenue in Cloverdale. With over an acre of land - in the Campbell Heights location - an area zoned for future business park development. With 4 bedrooms, an updated kitchen, and nothing to do but wait for the equity growth... I know this family can't be happier. And there is even room for the horse!
Is Your Secondary Suite Registered? What's new in 2013...
Langley Township, which currently has an estimated 10,000 secondary suites, will now allow them provided homeowners pay a new fee of $350 per suite, plus a 30% fee on water and sewer charges. But the fee is reduced to $175 for homeowners who register the suites by the end of this year...by December 2013. (Langley Township has allowed the suites since 2007, but previously had no fees.)
LANGLEY HOMEOWNERS TAKE NOTE:
Any Langley Township homeowner who has a suite and does not register it...
is subject to fines of $500 a day until they register. Ouch!
Burnaby...This month, Burnaby approved a new bylaw to legalize secondary suites and collect permit fees, though the level of fees has yet to be set.
White Rock...Last month, White Rock began registering and charging a $250 fee for secondary suites.
Surrey...Surrey charges annually $350 per suite. Abbotsford...charges annual $572 per secondary suite, plus registration fees.
City of North Vancouver...This municipality was the first to allow secondary suites in single-family homes. They are now approving them for duplexes as well, which can turn them into fourplexes (* check higher standards for building codes).
City of Vancouver...charges $65 per suite (plus additional fees for water, sewer, garbage, recycling...$330).
The Fraser Valley Real Estate Board
For Immediate Release: October 2, 2012
Buyers take ‘wait and see’ approach for single family homes; condos holding their own
SURREY, BC – For the second month in a row, property sales on the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board’s Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) have decreased to historically low levels. In September, a total of 857 sales were processed on the MLS®, a decrease of 26 per cent compared to 1,165 sales in September 2011 and 20 per cent fewer than in August.
Scott Olson is the president of the Board. “Our market was very stable up until July and then within two months it changed.
“The federal government’s tightening of mortgage rules this past spring may be having an effect. We’ve seen this pattern before when rules have changed and hopefully given the strength of our local economy and stability of interest rates, this slowdown will be short term.”
Olson adds that properties offering more affordability remain in demand. “Sales of more expensive homes – single family detached – have decreased disproportionately more than the sales of townhomes and apartments. In fact, apartment sales last month in Surrey, Langley and White Rock were higher or comparable to September of last year keeping prices across the Fraser Valley resilient.”
Over the last three months, prices for all three residential property types combined have decreased by 0.4 per cent while year over year they’ve increased by 2.1 per cent. For single family detached homes, the benchmark price increased by 3 per cent in one year, going from $533,400 in September 2011 to $549,500 last month.
For townhouses, the benchmark price in September was $300,500, a decrease of 1.7 per cent compared to$305,700 during the same month last year. The benchmark price of apartments in Fraser Valley in September was$207,000, an increase of 4.1 per cent compared to $198,800 in September 2011.
Last month, the Board received 4 per cent fewer listings than it did one year ago, 2,544 in September 2012 compared to the 2,651 in September 2011. The number of active listings finished at 10,348 in September, 2 per cent higher than the same month last year, yet on par with the number available on the market in August.
It took four days longer on average to sell a detached home last month compared to September 2011 – 49 days compared to 45. Townhouses sold in an average of 57 days in September compared to 52 last year and last month, apartments took 69.5 days on average to sell compared to 63 during September of last year.
“My realtor said that she would leave a key in the lockbox for the viewing today...and that the other realtor is more than qualified to do the showing. I don’t know this other realtor...will she know what the features of my home are?”
Many realtors allow other realtors to show their listings, giving them access to the property with a key left in the lockbox. Personally, I think, unless you are completely unavailable that day, then as a professional, you are the best one to show your own listing.
This story best describes my experience with lockboxes...
It’s a rainy day in Langley. I have pre-selected two townhomes and booked these showings. Along with me are my valuable clients. A nice twenty-something couple who are first-time home buyers. They are pre-qualified and ready to buy their first dream home.
Property No. 1....
My clients are in good spirits in spite of all the rain. They have just viewed property No. 1... a cheerful and cozy townhome that meets most of their needs. The Listing agent was there to meet us and show us all the unique features of this well-maintained and nicely staged home. The interior lights and heat were on, the drapes open, and the gas fireplace turned on.
Property No. 2....
I have received a message that the Listing Agent is “too busy” to show this property, but lets me know that there is a key in the Lockbox. Upon arriving, I wade through the mud to the gas meter, where the lock box is located. In the meantime, my good buyers are getting a little chilly standing in the rain waiting to be let in. Upon entering the home, and kicking off our soggy shoes...the first impression is a dark, chilly one. The lights are off, the heat is not on, and the drapes are closed.
As a realtor we know that first impressions are everything. A potential buyer, upon entering a home, usually makes up their mind in the first 5 seconds.
Which home do you think these buyers made an offer on? If you answered “yes” to property no. 1 - you would be right.
So if you are thinking of selling...ask the question: Will you be there at all the showings?