Read more in the February 2017 Market Update, Nanaimo Real Estate

February 2017 Market Update and Infographic

Get informed with February 2017 market update. In February 2017:

  • 347 single-family homes sold on the MLS® System compared to 406 last February, a decrease of 15 per cent.
  • Sales rose by 42 per cent from January 2017, which saw 245 sales.
  • Inventory of single-family homes declined by 38 per cent from February 2016, with 949 active listings compared to 1,529 one year ago.
    • However, the 949 available properties reflect a six per cent increase over January, an encouraging development since the lack of inventory continues to challenge consumers and REALTORS® in the VIREB area.

Last month, the benchmark price of a single-family home in the VIREB area was $403,100, up 18 per cent from one year ago. Prices increased in every zone, ranging from 14 per cent in Duncan and Port Alberni to 25 per cent in Nanaimo.

February 2017 Market Update, Nanaimo Real Estate

The benchmark price of an apartment in February rose 22 per cent board-wide from the previous year, but we saw the highest increases in Parksville-Qualicum (24 per cent), the Comox Valley (26 per cent), and Campbell River (26 per cent). The townhouse market also strengthened in January, posting a 20 per cent increase board-wide.

MORE NANAIMO REAL ESTATE MARKET UPDATES

For a look at our comprehensive stats package, click here. Prefer a visual snapshot? Then check out our February 2017 infographic.

Source: VIREB

Ever ask yourself why your house might not be selling? In today’s market it’s not much of an issue, since most properties are selling fairly fast. But in days gone by, and no doubt, at some point in the future, the market will turn and some homes will take longer to sell. We’ve put together 7 reasons to answer the question, “what are the reasons why my house may not be selling?” What are some of the most common reasons why a house sits on the market?

Why my house may not be selling

  1. Rooms are full of junk. De-cluttering is one of the most important things you can do. Since you’re moving anyway, pack up the stuff you don’t use, don’t need, or that’s just sitting around waiting for someone to deal with and store the boxes in the basement or garage where they’re out of the way.
  2. The yard is overgrown. Prune the trees, trim the shrubs, clean up the flower beds, and cut the grass. It won’t take long, and it will greatly improve the curb appeal of the home. First impressions DO make a difference so you want the first thing people see to be your well-kept yard.
  3. It has an old kitchen or bathrooms. We’ve all heard countless times that bathrooms and kitchens sell homes. Even if you don’t have money to completely renovate, there are things you can do to improve these rooms. Paint them with a fresh new, neutral color or remove that old wallpaper. Depending on the age of the home, maybe install a new toilet, or add new fixtures like towel bars, toilet paper holder, lighting or faucets.
  4. Bad or unfinished DIY projects. Chipped paint, exposed wires and holes in walls can all deter people from buying your home. Unfinished jobs make the home appear beat up or not well maintained and no one really wants to come in behind you to clean up your mess.
  5. Bad smells from things like pets, dampness, cigarettes or even cooking. Air the place out and make sure you try to minimize bad odors as much as possible.
  6. Wet patches or stains on ceilings or walls. This implies leak issues (fixed or not), and people don’t want to have to deal with finding and fixing leaks when they purchase a home. If you have stains from old leaks that have been repaired, then paint the area so it’s clean and fresh.
  7. The home is untidy or dirty. Once your house is on the market, think of it as the neighborhood “show home”. Keep it clean, keep it tidy and people will know you’re an owner who cares about the home and has looked after it well.

There are seven great ways to answer, “What are the reasons why my house may not be selling?”

If you’re not sure where to start, ask your real estate agent. At RE/MAX of Nanaimo, our agents are experienced in helping people display their homes in the best possible light. Call us today at (250) 751-1223 and we’ll get started!

Read more in the February 2017 Market Update, Nanaimo Real Estate

January 2017 Real Estate Market Update

Contact Us   Search Properties For Sale   Find a REALTOR®

January is typically a quiet month in the local real estate industry. This January seemed to be fairly sedate, however the stats from the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board are telling us it was another good month (if you’re a home seller) for sales, volume, and days to sell. Our January 2017 Real Estate Market Update stats also tell us that it was another tough month for active single family home listings in Nanaimo.

January 2017 Real Estate Market Update

There were 100 single family homes (SFH) newly listed in Nanaimo in January 2017 vs. 125 last January.

  • 56 Single Family Homes

were reported sold, vs. 63 last January which is an 11% reduction, but really only a difference of 7 units. A major difference falls in the number of days to sell for SFH’s.

  • 49 DAYS

… the average in January 2016, and that dropped to 40 in January 2017. Our Active SFH listing inventory in Nanaimo also stayed fairly consistent at 196.

The number of homes from which a buyer has to choose compared to the number of buyers in the market represents the demand.

Take a look at the numbers for the last 10 yrs.

January 2017 Real Estate Market Update

*Immediately following the beginning of the recession

Comparing the best year in 2017 verses the worst year in 2009 of the inventory and days to sell markets; 2017 there are only 38% of the listings available, and those listings are selling more than twice as fast! Demand is very high, and it continues to cause prices to trend slightly higher again this month.

Nanaimo Buyers

Buyers need to be prepared. That’s a great reason to consult one of our excellent REALTORS® who will help you to be ready with; referrals to a variety of lenders for a pre-approval of financing, current market information to help you determine value, a solid working knowledge of the local real estate community, access to great professionals to assist in the process, and a plan for success.

We hope you took away something of value from our January 2017 Real Estate Market Update. Check back next month for the February report.

Making the right choice when to list or buy real estate can be an frustrating process. Stay up to date on what’s happening to make easier choice for your family. 

BC Home Partnership

2017 Housing Action: BC Home Partnership

The BC Government believes that every British Columbian deserves a place to call home. That is why they are taking action to control:

  • the cost of housing
  • increase access to affordable rental units
  • help families make their dream of homeownership come true

Taking bold action on housing

Achieving that dream can be challenging for first-time homebuyers. With the launch of the B.C. HOME Partnership program, first-time homebuyers have more options than ever to help them get their foot in the door.

Learn about the Housing Action programs you may qualify for today. Whether you are renting, buying or renovating, B.C. is working to keep housing affordable for you.

Houses for Rental     Houses for Sale

Source: http://housingaction.gov.bc.ca 

2016 Nanaimo Real Estate Market Review

2016 Nanaimo Real Estate Market Review

That’s a wrap! Let’s review what went on in the 2016 Nanaimo Real Estate Market Review. Depending on the statistics you follow, our 2016 market saw price increases of 13% (average price per unit) to 17% (Home Price Index).  This is exciting news for homeowners, particularly home SELLERS, as until the BC Assessment Authority releases their updated assessments, changes in market prices can be a worry.  This is the time of year when friends, family and clients of REALTORS® call to confirm, not always believing the good news. The BC Assessment Authority has valued homes very close to market values, with the usual exceptions. This also accounts for huge spikes in the assessed value of a home.

Selling?

As a home seller you may ask: “How much will this cost me in property taxes?”

To find a proper answer, take the time to visit the Assessment Authority website and find out how their process works.  They aren’t perfect, and by the mere fact that they offer the public an appeal process, they acknowledge their own limitations.  However, the many hardworking individuals at BC Assessment do try their best to convey true and accurate information. As a home seller, you should also consider that the City of Nanaimo determines taxes based on a formula called the ‘Mill Rate’.  This formula is adjusted up and down to make sure the City receives the tax base it needs to continue all the services it provides, and to show it is not in place to extort the Tax Payer.  There is a breakdown of this process on the City of Nanaimo website that can be found here:

How Are My Taxes Calculated?

As another consideration, if your assessment has increased significantly, it may be time to contact a RE/MAX of Nanaimo REALTOR® to get a good market value for your home.

Contact a REALTOR®

2016 Nanaimo Real Estate Market Review

2016 has been a great year for home sellers in Nanaimo and the surrounding area.  Home prices have gone up and volume has been strong, especially when you consider the lack of inventory.  If you’re downsizing or even hoping to leverage the equity in your home to downsize, a RE/MAX of Nanaimo REALTOR® can give you a great foundation for your decision.

As a home buyer, prices have also gone up, but rates remain VERY appealing. The Canadian Government does offer several new programs to help first-time buyers into the market, and if you’re buying in Nanaimo, you are in a market that offers great value, a spectacular place to live, and plentiful amenities for you and your family.

View Current Listings

That’s a wrap for our 2016 Nanaimo Real Estate Market Review. Come back monthly to stay current with the monthly Market Updates for 2017 and to find quick tips for buying, selling, renovating and so much more.

The REALTORS®, staff, management and owners at RE/MAX of Nanaimo want to thank all our clients for their business in 2016 and every continuing year. We wish you and your family the very best in your 2017 home search!

Government, First-time home Buyer

BC Government Unveils Plan To Help First-Time Home Buyers

As the cost of home owernship in BC continues to go up, the Provincial Government has offered downpayment assistance to those who struggle the hardest with prices on the rise, First-time buyers. The essence of the plan is to assist first-time home buyers with the downpayment requirements that are set in place. Read more to find out the plans in a nutshell.

First-Time Home Buyers

  • Begins January 16, 2017 for purchases that close on or after February 15, 2017
  • Is set to run for 3 years, ending March 31, 2020
  • Is available Province-wide
  • Is for a legal, self-contained mortgageable residence in BC
  • Provides eligible first-time buyers with loans which are*;
    • Interest and payment free for up to 5 years
    • Are for a maximum of 5% of the purchase price to a maximum of $37,500
    • On a 25 year term and registered as a second mortgage on title
    • For a principal residence ONLY
As with any new plan, there are many questions and terms which need to be clarified
  • Will mortgage lenders accept down payments which are loans?
  • Will the lending institutions accept these 2nd mortgages being on title?
  • How will changes in market affect the affordability of payments after 5 years?

Mortgage lenders

Mortgage lenders seem to be trending towards rate increases in recent weeks, so affordability remains a big concern.

Interested in finding out if this program is a fit for you? Call your RE/MAX REALTOR®, and ask them to give you names of some good Mortgage Professionals who can answer your questions.

*this list of qualifications in not exhaustive, for all the eligibility requirements, contact a Mortgage Professional or the Province of BC Website.
Curb appeal, Nanaimo Real Estate

How To Improve Your Curb Appeal In The Winter

While it’s easy to give your home a great look during the summer months when the flowers are in bloom, it’s more difficult to make a home look great during the cold, darker winter months. Here, we’ll take a look at a few things you can do to improve your curb appeal for your home during winter.

Improve your curb appeal

Clean up the landscaping

Prune the bushes and shrubs so that windows are visible. This lets as much daylight as possible into the home and the shrubs appear neat and well kept. Remove old flowers and weeds from the flower beds. This not only looks neater, but you won’t be faced with this task in the spring when it’s time to plant new flowers.

Sweep up leaves and shovel snow

Not only does this make the home look better, it’s also a safety issue. Guests don’t want to slip and slide their way to your front door, and in most municipalities, you’re required by law to clear the sidewalks of snow and ice. Make sure you do the driveway as well and then throw down some sand, salt or ice melt for good measure. Lastly, while you’re shoveling the snow, take a look at the eaves and gutters and knock off any icicles that may have formed.

Turn on this outside lights

Bright lighting is important in winter not just for visibility, but because it makes the home appear warm and welcoming. It is especially important to make sure the garage and porch lights are on if potential buyers are coming to view the property. During the Christmas season, have a few festive lights on the house, trees or shrubs to add even more warmth but be careful you don’t go overboard.

Put away the non-essentials

If you have kids toys, empty plant pots or lawn furniture in the yard, put them away for the winter. If you’re not using them during the winter months, it’s easy to store them away in the shed, garage or basement until spring arrives. It cleans up the appearance and if your yard is not large, it can give the appearance of more space.

Winter isn’t a bad time to sell your home and with these few simple tips, you can improve the appearance of your curb appeal in the winter, with very little cost and effort.

Planning a winter move? You wouldn’t be the first one. One of our agents will be happy to assist you in finding the right home!

Read more in the February 2017 Market Update, Nanaimo Real Estate

Market Update: An Amazing Year For Nanaimo Real Estate

Amidst scandal resulting from questionable “Ghost Flipping” practices on the Lower Mainland, a loss of self-regulation for the BC Real Estate community, more mortgage rule changes, CMHC rule changes, and Real Estate Services Act rule changes, our local market has thrived and continues to do so.

Market update

Single Family Home inventory remains at unprecedented lows of 229 active listings. To put this in perspective:

  • a normal market in November of 2011had the single family home active listings pegged at 521
  • the last hot market in November 2007 had active listings dropping to 460
  • our lack of inventory is in no small way the driver behind the continuos increase in price. Compare avg sell price:
    • Nov 2016 $472,137
    • Nov 2011 $357,000
    • Nov 2007 $364,163
  • the many multiple offers and an average days to sell down to 26

Nanaimo real estate buyers

Even in this busy market, buyers remain vigilant. When a well-priced and well-marketed home hits the market there is often a flurry of activity, resulting in multiple offers well above asking price.  One home in Nanaimo last week reported 17 offers to be presented to the sellers. Buyers may also be feeling the pressure as they wonder how they will afford a home.

In comparison, the average price of a home selling in:

Average home price, Nanaimo Real Estate, Market Update

  • Nanaimo as stated above was $472,137
  • Victoria’s benchmark price was $755,000 in October
  • Vancouver’s benchmark price was $919,300 in October

Affordable homes

Nanaimo real estate continues to be an affordable alternative, offering great amenities, stunning landscapes, and access to excellent services.  When my wife and I moved to Nanaimo in 2002 from the Lower Mainland, we chose Nanaimo because it was affordable, centrally located, and because it was a GREAT place to raise a family.

Thank you

All the numbers and statistics aside, each and every REALTOR®, Owner, and Staff member at RE/MAX of Nanaimo would like to thank the community for choosing RE/MAX to help them buy or sell, or rent a property in 2016, and every year.  It’s the support from the community that allows RE/MAX of Nanaimo to retain the highest Market Share in our area.  We would also like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, Best of the Season and a safe, healthy and prosperous New Year in 2017!  We hope you will continue to choose RE/MAX for all your Real Estate needs.

Thank you for choosing RE/MAX of Nanaimo. If your 2017 goal or New Years Resolution is to move, let us find you the perfect home!

Resources for Moving to Canada

Are you considering moving to Canada from the United States? Here’s some tidbits and resources that might help you along the way.

Moving to Canada?

  1. The Government of Canada Immigration website is a great resource. You’ll find everything you need to know about the application process, different types of visas available, and processing times for the various types of visa applications. There’s also information about preparing for life in Canada once you’re approved – what to expect culturally, socially or financially. Visit cic.gc.ca and click on Immigration for all the details, forms and guides.
  1. If you want to hire a representative to help with your application, go to the Use a Representative page of the Government website for information about who is considered an Authorized Representative and why this is important. It also gives details about how to make sure you “get what you pay for”, what to look for in a representative, what to expect from them and how to handle a complaint should the need arise.
  1. Finding a representative to assist you in immigrating to your new city can be done by getting a referral from someone you trust. You can check the local yellow pages, or Google “Nanaimo Immigration Lawyers”. Whoever you choose, be sure you clearly understand the services they’ll provide, establish the price you’ll have to pay for those services and get it all in writing. Speak to references if possible and find out how many years they’ve been in business. Interview them as you would any other service professional.
  1. Go to the City of Nanaimo website at nanaimo.ca for all the information you’ll need about living in our beautiful city. Find out the schedule for garbage and recycling pickups, learn about how to license your dog, where to find parks and recreation facilities or to check out the map of the city. You can also reach them by telephone at (250) 754-4251.
  1. Find a new home. That’s the easiest part! Call RE/MAX of Nanaimo at (250) 751-1223. Whether you want to buy a home or rent one for the first while, we can help you with both. Our expert real estate agents or our Property Management group can find you the perfect place to call home and get settled. You can also visit our website at remaxofnanaimo.com for more information on what’s out there.

At RE/MAX of Nanaimo, we love to welcome new residents to our wonderful “Harbor City” so when you’re ready, call us at (250) 751-1223.

4 Tips for Winterizing Your Home

Fall is here and it’ll be cooler before you know it. So what do you need to do to get your home ready for winter? Here are four key things for winterizing your home and to prepare it for the winter season!

Winterizing your home

  1. Make sure the furnace and gas fireplaces are ready to go. The best way to do this is to have a professional company service the units. They’ll replace filters, if necessary, and make sure there are no other obvious problems. If anything is wrong, they can fix it now, before the temperature drops too much. You don’t want to be the one whose furnace gives out on the coldest day of the year!
  1. Clean out the gutters and downspouts when the leaves have finished falling. Plugged up gutters and downspouts cause all sorts of problems if they overflow. Fascia or soffit damage, landscaping erosion, and roof leaks can all be avoided as long as you keep the gutters and downspouts clear. Check them at least twice a year (more if you have a lot of trees) and don’t forget the elbows and joints because these are prime spots for clogs.
  1. Blow out the irrigation/sprinkler system. If you have an underground sprinkler system, you need to blow out the water lines and shut off the water to avoid frozen lines. Pipes can crack or burst when they thaw, which can then damage your home or garden. Pay a professional to do this properly and you’ll be assured you won’t have pipe bursts in the spring.
  1. Make sure you have Ice-Melt, Sand or Salt on hand for the sidewalk and driveway. The sidewalk can get slippery from frost or ice even if it doesn’t snow, so it’s important to be prepared. Sprinkling the sidewalk with one of the noted products only takes a couple of minutes but can save a whole lot of aggravation later. You don’t want someone to slip and fall because you’ve forgotten to take care of this.

In Nanaimo, Bylaw 5000 requires that sidewalks be cleared by the homeowners within 24 hours of the snowfall. For more information, call the City of Nanaimo at (250) 758-222 or go their website at www.Nanaimo.ca, click on Departments and go to Engineering & Public Works. You can follow the links from there.

If you’re looking for your next home before winter arrives, call one of the expert real estate agents at RE/MAX of Nanaimo today at (250) 751-1223.