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Winter Renovations?

Completing Renovations During the Winter Months? 

The slower winter months are the ideal time to complete renovations for some homeowners, the cold months mean there is less to do outside of the home and more people focus on fixes within. We have compiled a list to help you stay within your budget during your winter renovations. 

1. Figure Out Your Main Priorities

Take your time and slowly save up if you haven’t already, it is beneficial to pay in cash so that you can avoid incurring more debt. By making a checklist of what must be done rather than what you would like to be done, you will be able to make improvements without borrowing excess money. It will make you feel good without adding more debt and having an improved living space.

2. Take a Close Look at Your Utilities

Rather than simply swapping your name onto the property’s current utility bill, be sure to shop around for a better deal. If you are able to find another utility company that can provide the same service for less money, you will have more in the long run to spend on the changes that you want made. Other than utilities, you may also be able to get a better deal on your internet, cable/satellite, or insurance provider.

3. Be Accountable

Tracking your spending and making a budget to see where your money is going is highly advised. Quite commonly, people may be spending more money monthly on things such as takeout than they realize. Create a budget and plan ahead. You may consider making a spreadsheet and planning a year ahead. You will feel great when the year is done and you have held yourself accountable.

4. When Thinking About Purchasing New

Think about what is best for you when it comes to new appliances, furniture and other large ticket items. Search online marketplaces where there are always options to buy and sell. You may have inherited a stove that you can sell, to help you afford the new one that you have been looking forward to. Or you may even be able to find the one you have been dreaming of at a discounted price. You can also check with friends, family and neighbours to see if they are getting rid of any things that you may need. There is no shame in repurposing someone else’s kitchen cabinets or using someone’s leftover construction materials. You have the opportunity to save yourself some big bucks if you are open to doing some research.

5. Remember The Important Improvements

In addition to setting aside money for your upgrades, make sure to budget for when things go wrong. The average homeowner will experience needing a new roof, furnace or maybe upgrading from your gravel driveway. Some professionals suggest setting aside 2% of your home’s value for maintenance every year.

What winter renovations are you doing this year? Do you have any tips of your own?

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Buying In The Winter?

Debating on Buying in the Winter? Pros to buying now.. 

Although the spring and fall are the most common times to buy and sell your home, there are some advantages to looking for a home during the cold winter months. While there aren’t as many homes to choose from, there are significantly fewer buyers actively shopping and therefore less competition.  Everything slows down in the winter when it comes to real estate, but for some buyers this opens up a great opportunity. 

Less Competition

It is common for buyers to put their home search to a halt during the holiday season. This is typically due to certain buyers finding it less appealing to go out in the snowy cold weather or because people would like to take a break for holiday festivities. However, you can use this to your advantage by braving the elements. With less active buyers, you are less likely to get into a bidding war and there are less showings which motivates sellers. With the contrast between less competition and motivated sellers, you are more likely to get away with offering less and saving on the overall purchase price.

Moving and Renovation Expenses

Another benefit to buying in the winter is that when it’s closing day, you have a much broader selection of moving companies and contractors. For movers, they are often busy the first of the month helping people who are renting and their busy season is the spring and fall. With less people moving in the winter months, moving companies sometimes decrease their rates to remain competitive. It is the same with contractors, once the weather gets better in the spring they get booked up quickly.

Motivated Sellers

Some people may have had their home on the market for quite a few days at this point in the year or have just recently listed. We often find sellers with their homes on the market during the winter are very eager to sell. This means the possibility of the seller accepting an offer below what they’d typically accept is much more likely. 

We are always here to help when you need us, every step of the way. Any questions you have, always feel free to reach out to us here at For Sale On Georgian Bay!

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December 2022 Market Report For Our Communities

One last look back at 2022 as we take in the December Market Stats. We saw a large decrease in sales activity where December sales were down 48% compared to 2021. For a few months in a row now, active listings continued to surge, across our communities we saw 349% rise in active listings. There’s lots of opportunities for Buyers right now but don’t forget that seller’s are still getting top dollar for their properties. Although prices are down (1.7%), it’s important to remember that, year to date, the average sale price is up 7.7% compared to this point last year.

In our local communities, we saw the active listing trends continue, a lot more inventory in Penetanguishene with a staggering 2600% increase and in Tiny with a 507% increase. We also saw large inventory increases in Midland and Tay throughout December. Prices stayed fairly consistent compared to last year with very minimal decreases In Midland, Tiny & Tay. Across our other communities, we saw larger decreases. However, it’s important to note that there were limited sales to base this information off – Sales Activity was down almost 48% across the region. As we head into the new year, we expect a re-balancing of the market to continue with more opportunities for buyers but also attractive sales prices for sellers.

Trust your local experts to guide you through the process and take advantage of the current market. Ask us about our FREE Home Market Analysis to determine exactly how much your Home is worth in today’s Market.

All data correct as of January 6th, 2023, data gathered by the Ontario Collective based on December 2021 vs December 2022.

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New Year, New Home? – Seller’s Edition

Are you planning to sell your home in the near future? Regardless of season or market conditions, remember that you only have one chance to make a good first impression. Make it memorable for all the right reasons. Before listing your home, commit to these five New Year’s Resolutions to help ensure the quickest sale for the highest price.

Repair And Replace

When planning to sell your home, assess its condition and make repairs before listing. Cracked drywall, stained carpets, burned-out light bulbs and other minor damage is easy to fix and won’t break the bank, but left unrepaired, could impact offers. TIP: It can be tough to evaluate your own home. Have your For Sale On Georgian Bay agent or a friend tour your home and offer constructive criticism.

Get Comparable’s

Three to six months before your home hits the market, ask your For Sale On Georgian Bay agent to start scanning comparable listings to get a ballpark price estimate. Keep in mind that a variety of factors may affect your home’s selling price, like lot size; landscaping and interior finishes; proximity to busy streets, public transit, schools and parks; or supply and demand in the marketplace. Your For Sale On Georgian Bay agent will assess your home just prior to listing, to ensure you set the right price to attract serious buyers.

Cut The Clutter

A cluttered home can suggest lack of space, which can impact offers. Depending on lifestyle and length of time spent in the home, this can be a big undertaking. Take it step by step, room by room, and you’ll get through it. Be honest about what you want, need and love, and what you can do without. The bonus? You won’t have to pack, move and clutter your new home with stuff you don’t want.

Stage To Sell

When it’s time to sell your home, stage it to show it in the best possible light. This includes packing up family photos and personal items (prospective buyers want to picture themselves in the home, not you!), putting the non-essential items into storage (or the donation bin!). Your For Sale On Georgian Bay agent may offer Digital Staging staging as part of their suite of services, or will be able to put you in touch with a professional stager to help get the job done.

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New Year, New Home?

The New Year always brings around feelings of change and new beginnings – are you thinking about making a move in 2023? If so, here are 4 tips to help you. These New Year’s resolutions all relate to finances because a Home is the biggest investment most of us will make in our lifetime. 

Check Your Credit Rating

This is one of the most important initial steps you can take because you can guarantee that your potential mortgage lender will be doing the same. A credit score is a number between 300 and 900 that rates your credit-worthiness. According to credit-rating company Equifax, a score of 690 or higher is considered “good”. Lenders will use this score in tandem with other factors, such as your debt-to-income ratio, to determine mortgage eligibility. 

Credit Clean-Up

Remember that phone bill you forgot to pay a couple of years ago? It can come back to haunt you. Even a one-day-late payment is still considered “late,” and can negatively affect your credit rating – and your potential to qualify for a favourable mortgage. If you’re not happy with your credit score, take some time to bring it up to par before you start the pre-qualification process.

Get Pre-Approved For A Mortgage

It’s no secret that there was a lot of media attention surrounding the rising interest rates of 2022. As we move into 2023 we hope to see some reductions over the course of the year. It’s imperative to get expert advice to understand the changes and how the mortgage horizon looks. A mortgage pre-approval is not an obligation to purchase in this time frame, nor are you committed to that particular lender. It’s just a written confirmation of the approved amount and the promised rate, so you can shop with confidence within a budget you know you can afford.

Start Shopping

Online is a good place to start your search, but nothing beats first-hand experience. With budget in mind, bundle up and hit the streets to explore different neighbourhoods and the amenities you’ll have access to. Do you rely on public transit? Is an active nightlife important to you? Daycares and schools? Parks and rec? Highway access? How close (or far!) do you want to be from family and your workplace? Think about your day-to-day needs, and anticipate how they might change over time.

Most importantly, work with a For Sale On Georgian Bay Agent who has experience in the area and the type of home you plan to purchase. They will make setting up viewings easy and be ready and on your side to negotiate the best price when it comes to finally making an offer.