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Add Value While Stuck at Home

Have you been thinking of Selling when this lock down is lifted? Here are some simple tips to increase your homes value and get it ready to sell while stuck at home.


1. Start Painting - This is a quick and inexpensive way to add alot of value to your home.  Stick to neutral colours and remember not all paint is the same.  Applied properly, a good quality paint will look much better to potential buyer's, making them more likely to put in an offer.



2.  Make Repairs - We all have a "to-do" list around the house.  Some of you may be swamped between working from home and schooling your kids.  If your lucky enough to have extra time, why not tackle some of these projects that have been on the back burner.  Make sure not to bite off more than you can chew and only do one project at a time.  When this lock down is lifted you don't want to have multiple projects on the go.


3.  Create Curb Appeal - The weather is starting to turn and the day's are getting warmer.  It is a great time to clean up the yard and do some landscaping.  Check your grading to make sure the spring run-off will flow away from your house.  Some simple chores like; weeding, adding mulch, painting the deck, levelling the interlock and maintaining a healthy lawn can all add value at a very low cost to you.  


4. Decluttering - Being stuck at home you may have noticed that you have way too much stuff! Are some of your things just taking up space and collecting dust? Now is a great time to get rid of the things that you no longer want or need.  Look into local charities and see if they are accepting donations at this time.  You can also book a large item garbage pickup with your local municipality for bigger items that are being thrown out.


5.  Replace Light Fixtures - By replacing old light fixtures you can freshen up a room and create ambiance while improving visibility.  You can also reduce your energy costs with new bulbs, ceiling fans and timers.


6.  Upgrade Appliances - Do you have old mismatched appliances that waste energy and are a complete eye sore? If so, it may be a time for an upgrade.  Most purchase and sale agreements include appliances in good working order.  Buyers may not offer your desired purchase price if the appliances are old and missmatched.  If you are in a luxury home you will want to install high end appliances otherwise uniform standard appliances will be sufficient.  If your  appliances match and are still in good working order, it may not be worth upgrading if you plan on selling within the next 3-6 months.


The world is going through a tough time and staying busy around the house can be a healthy way for us to cope with these challenging times.  Accomplishing small goals is a good way to stay positive and create momentum to carry forward when the lock down is lifted and things get back to normal.  We hope you found this blog helpful and wish you continued health during this difficult time.  If you have any real estate related questions or just want to chat, we would love to hear from you!

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This Easter we would like to thank all the health care professionals
and front line workers for their amazing commitment during these difficult times
We wish everyone a safe and Happy Easter.
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#GTARealEstateStats #GTARealEstate #DurhamRegionRealEstate #March2020RealEstateStats 

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The last several weeks have seen major changes across many industries and ours, the real estate business is no different. 


While many businesses have sadly but understandably had to face closures real estate remains an essential service.


So why is that?


The best reason is that people still need a place to live in. Many people already sold their current home before the effects of COVID-19 were being felt and still need to buy a home. Some have purchased a home before selling and still need to sell their home or face the challenge of carrying multiple mortgages. Others are just in a difficult circumstance and must sell for whatever reason.


Land Registry offices, lawyers and lenders need to be open to close transactions that had already taken place prior to the outbreak. These are all reasons for real estate continuing despite physical distancing and social isolation.


So how are transactions happening today?


Transactions can still happen because fortunately, the real estate industry has built a digital infrastructure to create and sign contracts virtually, show homes online and wire deposits and all the necessary work that needs to happen.


To support this clauses and forms have been drafted to confirm everything from showing protocol to health disclosures of parties to a transaction. Clauses have been developed to protect both buyers and sellers in the event of further shutdowns of services essential to real estate.


The biggest challenge is allowing buyers to see a seller's property without open houses which have officially been banned by the government and showings happening virtually and only in person as an absolute last resort with the utmost care for the safety of clients and the professionals involved.


Realtors like us have been using virtual tours, professional photography and video to promote properties for a long time. Today we're just upping the ante with added services like buyer directed virtual showings where the buyer directs the seller to show them their property over video conference so the buyer has control and can get a tour without entering the home.


We're using tools like Facebook, Instagram, Live Streaming, Zoom and FaceTime to bring buyers and sellers together while protecting them in transactions.


To see our brokerage's policy visit Sutton Group-Heritage Realty Inc. (Independently owned & operated)'s COVID-19 page online here.


If you have any questions. Give us a call. We're happy to help. 905-409-9967

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How Banks are stepping up amid COVID-19

One thing that has been nice to see during this difficult time is how the institutions that support the Canadian economy have stepped up to bolster us all during COVID-19.


Here are ways that the big banks are stepping up.


This past Friday April 3rd, several banks including the big 5, Bank of Nova Scotia, Toronto-Dominion Bank, Royal Bank of Canada, National Bank of Canada and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce all cut credit card rates in order to support customers during the COVID-19 shutdowns. 


Financial Post


This is just the latest action that the banks have taken to help Canadians manage the financial burden of COVID-19. Earlier in March banks began offering up to 6 months of mortgage payment deferrals to help Canadians who may have difficulty making mortgage payments during COVID-19.


Understanding Mortgage Payment Deferral - CMHC


While most banks won't outright postpone payments interest free it does offer some much needed relief to anyone temporarily laid off due to shut downs or slow work during the pandemic.


Global News


The only area thats been slowing in the last week are mortgage rates which are seeing some rise after multiple rounds of cuts following the bank of Canada's cuts in March. On March 27th the Bank of Canada lowered the overnight rate to a 1/4 percent


According to a James Laird, president of mortgage brokerage CanWise Financial and co-founder of Ratehub.ca "a few weeks ago, the best mortgage rates were something in the range of between two and 2.5 per cent. Today, they're between 2.5 and three per cent because, as he puts it, "they are demanding a higher risk premium than what they typically do." CBC


That said rates are still very low historically.


Looking for help navigating your financing for a home. The best person to speak with is Jim. In addition to being your real estate broker Jim has been a mortgage broker with Entrust Financial for over 2 decades. 


Have a question call Jim at 905-409-9967.


Licence #: 10891

FSCO# M08007896

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