Nanaimo Real Estate Blog
It can be an overwhelming decision to purchase a home, regardless if it is your first home or your last one (you hope). Over the years, buyers have shared with our McCullough Team members some of their greatest fears when buying and we thought it might be a good idea to share with you and see if any match your concerns. 1. The "Stalker" Home Seller. Without question, having a seller present during a showing can create a huge sense of unease for a buyer. There is the type of home owner who will take the realtor and buyer through the empty home and point out each of the non-furnished bedrooms and tell you that the mold on the windows is "nothing". There is also the type of home owner whose initial greeting is to tell you that they have priced the home at market value and won't take a penny less. For many buyers, dealing face-to face with a seller can be a huge fear, especially if they don't really like the home!
You are cordially invited to our RE/MAX Customer Appreciation Celebration to be held on Saturday, June 11th from 11:30-3:30pm at RE/MAX of Nanaimo (1-5140 Metral Drive). There will be lots of FREE entertainment and FREE food for the whole family including a BBQ, petting zoo, amusement rides, face painting, rock climbing, games, and balloons for everyone. Everything is FREE and it is a great way to enjoy the sunshine with your family! Please stop by and say “hi” to us, enjoy some lunch and help us welcome Kiel Lukaniuk, the newest member of our McCullough Team! For more information, please feel free to give us a call at 250-751-1223 or email us at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org . We are truly thrilled to be part of such a great RE/MAX organization and each time our McCullough Marketing Team sells a property or home, a donation is made to the Children’s Miracle Network as well as local charities and youth organizations. As a result of contributions like ours, the hospital was able to provide family-centred care, life saving equipment and research for children and families throughout BC. Almost 500 local children in our area were assisted last year alone. To date, our RE/MAX of Nanaimo office has contributed over $550,000 to this worthwhile cause! Looking forward to seeing you Saturday, June 11th!
Over the past 36+ years in real estate, I have prided myself on the exceptional clients that I have had the opportunity to work with. Many of my clients have become great friends, and I have had the privilege of helping their children and even some grandchildren with their real estate needs. Over the years, there have also been a few of the “unreasonable” clients that I simply wanted to have disappear into the Bermuda Triangle and never return. I thought that you might enjoy a story or two of the worst real estate clients I have ever had, as I think that that many of us have met a CHEATER, LIAR or a simply INTOLERABLE character throughout our lives.
Earlier this week, the BC government outlined changes that will take place beginning May 16, 2016 that are targeted towards stopping the rampant “shadow flipping” that was prevalent in Metro Vancouver recently. It does appear that the government had no choice but to intervene in the matter following a scathing article published in March by the Globe and Mail detailing the shady real estate transaction. However, it won’t be enough to slow down the insatiable thirst for home ownership that has prices skyrocketing in Vancouver and even parts of Victoria.
Markets: We are seeing a steady real estate market recovery taking place, but not an unmanageable "boom" like Vancouver. PRICES 1. In Nanaimo, single family home prices have risen slightly in the past 12 months (average sale price was $398,053 compared to $375,884 – up 6% over past 12 months). 2. For the month of March 2016, the average sale price for a home was $427,786 - up 5% over March 2015 ($408,070). 3. Sale prices are 2% lower over the past 12 months for patio strata homes prices, although March 2015 saw the average price increase by 6% compared to March 2015 with the average patio home selling at $313,246 compared to $296,488. Townhome prices stayed relatively the same compared to last March and overall the average price has slipped by 1% over the past 12 months. Condos rose slightly by 6% in price during this same time. In all likelihood, the price point for condos is an attractive feature for first-time home buyers and those downsizing from family homes as the average sale price over the past 12 months for a condo is $224,807. 4. Lot sale prices saw an increase of only 1% over the past 12 months. Sale prices saw an increase in March by 13% compared to March 2015. The average lot sale price last month was $174,988 compared to $154,646 for the same month last year – up 13%, although inventory cannot keep up with demand for new housing.
Do you ever watch those HGTV real estate shows and wonder if the show is staged? It turns out that those vapid home buyers whose budget is $150,000 and who cannot live without granite counters and separate double sinks in an ensuite might not be real after all. People Magazine reported earlier this week that the "Love It or List It" TV show on HGTV is being sued by a North Carolina couple who allege that the renovations done to their rental home while appearing as guests on the show left it "irreparably damaged". The lawsuit claims that the show hired a contractor whom they had not given consent to do the work and that the entire show was staged. The house that they were shown to them to consider purchasing wasn't even for sale and that designers were actually actors. The renovations were completed shabbily and the general contractor was not even licensed in the state. It seems that these type of shows are entertaining for viewers, but not an accurate reflection of how the real estate process goes. Once again, it is so critical when considering buying or selling a home, that you get the experience of a real estate professional with the expertise of a team who can ensure that your interests are always protected.
This week, there has been a series of reports in the media concerning real estate companies on the Mainland that encouraged agents to engage in the practice called “shadow flipping” and to think about the commissions involved rather than the best interests of their clients. Shadow flipping is real estate practice that has not been seen in Nanaimo and area, but has become quite common in parts of Vancouver as prices skyrocket beyond the income levels of residents, creating a schism between those who live and work in Vancouver and those who invest and safeguard their money in real estate, and then allow properties to sit vacant and literally rot until they are no longer livable. When a seller lists a home for sale, a buyer will immediately make an offer to purchase the home and then sell the contract of purchase to another buyer, often with the services of real estate agents willing to garner additional commissions.
Earlier this week, Nanaimo suffered a tragic fire in the downtown core which affected several local businesses. As the smoke and flames subsided and the valiant firefighters packed up after valiantly battling this terrible blaze, I thought it might be interesting to share the history of this heritage building that likely will now be torn down due to the amount of damage caused by the fire. Jean Burns was an beloved resident of Nanaimo and spearheaded the construction of the Jean Burns Building built in 1955 by local architect, Thomas McAvarravy. A particularly interesting design feature of this building located on the corner of Commercial Street and Terminal Avenue was that the second floor stairway was exposed to the street by a paneled glass wall. This building was the location for the Jean Burns Ladies and Children’s Wear Shop for over 40 years. The clothing was quite upscale and sold the latest fashions and was a reflection of Jean’s experience as a seamstress.
Many ideas about this week’s newsletter filled my brain. Would I write about the history of the Easter egg? What about Spring clean-up tips? However, after the tragedy that took place in Belgium this week, it feels as though none of these ideas really matter. I can recall with sadness the events in France and the despair felt by so many for not being able to do more to help those who had been affected. As stories from the Belgium bombings unfold, it is hard not to catch your breath as the faceless and nameless victims suddenly come sharply into focus as the news media begins to share with all of us the personal stories, photos and names of those injured, killed or traumatized by these attacks. Whether at the hands of evil, or out of a sick and perverse sense of duty to a religion, it does not alleviate the pain and suffering of those who have been impacted by this tragedy.
The VIREB stats prove that we have moved from a buyer's market to a seller's market and buyers need a set of tools to combat this change in the real estate market. However, our society seems to have embraced a frantic and impatient model of behavior that can prove costly for a home buyer. According to clinical psychologist Szana E Flores, author of Facehooked: How Facebook Affects Our Emptions, Relationships and Lives, she lays blames solely on technology and social media. "The millennial generation grew up on a whole lot of technology, more so than other generations, and they feel the fallout of that," she says. "But most of us are becoming less comfortable with delayed gratification." The main problem with impatience is that once we focus on a singular goal, we often are prevented from enjoying other activities. Much like climbing a mountain, we often will know roughly how long it will take to hike the mountain and set off eager to race up the hill. The longer we hike, the more impatient we become. We then consider setting a new goal – which may be to simply stop climbing as we may fear impending pain if we continue. This mindset can often apply to home buying in a busy market.