When I go out with first time Buyers, they are often interested in condominiums. The reality is that the price point for many condos is attractive to first time Buyers. If they are leaving an apartment and moving into an apartment condo it is important to stress that, while it may seem like an apartment, the Buyer becomes an owner. It might also seem like the maintenance people work for someone else – the property managemetn company – but they work for you, the Buyer, through the management company or condo board.
Now that you know that you are the owner, take care of your investment. Would you take $150,000 and give it to a stranger to manage and hope that you will have something left at the end of a few years. Would you also give that same company the liberty (without investigating why) to call you up and demand a few thousand extra dollars to maintain your investment? Of course not. So, if you are buying a condo because you think that you can turn over all the responsability to someone else, I strongly advise you to think again. Get involved in the condo board. Go to the meetings. Read the by-laws and the minutes carefully. Watch for maintenance issues. Keep track of the sales in your building.
Take care of your investment.
Photo credit: Appetizing young condos for sale @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/allaboutgeorge/2526632797/
Hand rails need to be checked before putting your home for sale. The first order of business is to ensure that they are safe, do not wobble and can be used by the Buyers. If parts are broken or missing, replace them. After you have are sure that you will not be sued by an injured Buyer, then look for ways to clean and tart them up.
- Metal – If the rails are rusty and/ or peeling, use a wire brush to get out the rust and paint smoothed. Wash. Spray paint. Always protect yourself and the stairs with plastic.
- Vinyl – Wash the railings. If very dirty, use car wash soap.
- Wood – Wash. Sand. Wash. Stain or paint. Again, protect yourself and the steps from drips.
Rally round safety and appeal.
Photo credit: Hand Rail @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/eddidit/391622603/
Have you such an extensive book and video collection that friends and relatives constantly visit to borrow items? If you are selling your home, collect all outstanding loans and close up your lending library. Pack or give away most of your collection. Keep only a few items just to hint that books will fit on the shelves.
Don’t distract the buyer with your collections and clutter.
What happened in the first six months of this year? Based on MLS®statistics for residential properties (not including condos), things in Stittsville have remained relatively stable with houses taking a little longer to sell.
2008 – 202 units sold at an average price of $356,464 with average DOM of 29.
2009 – 205 units sold at an average price of $360,457 with average DOM of 38.
Stittsville: The larger the area the bigger the selection.
Photo credit: Adrice Smitton
When buying a house, most people spend a lot of time looking at the kitchen. A kitchen is likely the most expensive interior remodeling that can be done. While you are living in the house and selling it, it may be a challenge to keep the kitchen looking presentable. However, there are some things that are best put away and not on display.
- Dirty dishes and food crumbs
- Thawing food
- Medical supplies
Most Buyers have at least a little germ phobia. Dishes, crumbs, food and medical supplies say bugs, food poisoning and disease. All of these are negative perceptions. Clean up, thaw things in the fridge and relocate your medical centre. You will want high marks for your kitchen to translate into high value for your home.
Photo credit: frozen turkey @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/ritika/266576619/
Valerie Zinger ~ Ottawa Canada ~ 613-723-5300 ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
Have you got a city water grate in front of your house. If so, keep it clear of leaves in the fall and of snow and debris in the spring. A plugged grate will cause water to pool. Sometimes this is the only place for the buyer to get out of his/her vehicle.
Stepping into a puddle will grate on the buyers’ nerves.
2008 – 34 units sold at an average price of $457,041 with average DOM of 39.
2009 – 31 units sold at an average price of $512,512 with average DOM of 39.
The Sandy Hill Area: Staying True.
Photo credit: Adrice Smitton
A new Buyer and I have been looking at entry level row homes and condo apartments. Almost without fail, and despite the fact that the places have been built by different developers, the bathroom lights are the same. There are very slight variations – three bulbs or five depending upon the space. It has become so common that we have a running joke.
Q> What do you do with your first bonus cheque?
A> Buy new bathroom lights.
If you are going to paint the bathroom before selling, take down these fixtures and patch the wall behind the light then install a new, more modern fixture. You the Seller, will be surprised at how inexpensive but modern some light fixtures can be.
Separate your home from the herd with a new bathroom light.
Photo credit: downstairs bathroom @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/flickerbulb/137089610/
Of course I am talking about a fire place. If you have a wood burning fireplace, sweep out all of the debris and set up, but do not light, a log fire. If your fireplace is fueled by gas, consider dismantling it to clean the glass thoroughly and then putting it back together. Buyers love to turn on gas fireplaces when viewing homes.
Make sure you can light the buyer’s fire.
2008 – 19 units sold at an average price of $474,789 with average DOM of 24.
2009 – 36 units sold at an average price of $484,969 with average DOM of 32.
The Civic Hospital Area: Increasingly attractive.