Okanagan Real Estate News from Bo Skapski June 2018   
  Real Estate News




Bo Skapski
Bo Knows Homes Desrosiers Cook Team

Assurance Realty Ltd.
#100 - 1634 Harvey Avenue
Kelowna, BC
250-808-5508 or 1-888-301-2121
www.BoKnowsHomes.ca


 
Preparing your home for showings can be a lot of work, especially if you have kids running around.  This month's article discusses some strategies on how to prepare your home to show with kids in tow.

There are also some valuable debt management strategies to help keep you and your loved ones profitable as well as a few tips on how to de-stress your home.

Thanks so much for checking out this month's newsletter. Please get in touch if you have any questions or comments regarding the articles, or real estate in general -- it'd be great to hear from you!

Bo Skapski

In this issue...
Okanagan Real Estate Market Report 
Home sales volumes in sharp contrast to recent years.

The volume of May home sales across the region of Revelstoke to Peachland contrasted sharply with this time last year, with 817 homes sold, a slight uptick from April but down 28% over this time last year, reports the Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB).

“Not surprisingly, the residential home market continues to slow after a particularly heady market that peaked in 2016. Supply is starting to catch up with new units coming on stream, while demand is dampening as a result of government regulations,” said OMREB President Marv Beer noting that May is the third consecutive month where sales volumes were down from the same period last year.

New listings were 1764, up 16% over April and 7% over this time last year. Average price, typically the last indicator to normalize, was $532,972, just 1% over April and 4% over this time last year.

“Market peaks and valleys could be significantly softened if government were to address the root cause of BC’s continued chronic shortage of affordable housing,” Beer contends.

“When demand for housing increases, home builders typically respond by building new homes,” Beer notes. “But, as we’ve seen here and across BC in general, prices increase when supply doesn’t ramp up fast enough, making homes less affordable in general.”

Adequate housing supply is critical for long-term generalized housing affordability. Rather than targeting specific groups, government could make a lasting, more significant impact on housing affordability by addressing the regulatory hurdles that constrain housing supply in general.

This, in turn, would impact a much larger population of renters and buyers who would not qualify for social housing. In fact, a new UBC study concerning Metro Vancouver provides evidence that the focus governments have placed on demand-side policies are unlikely to lead to housing affordability. The concepts are applicable elsewhere.

Current regulatory barriers, or ‘red tape’ coupled with an uncertain regulatory environment, aggravates supply of housing now and likely critically affects overall affordability in future.

“The problem with trying to curb demand is that it is unlikely to free up the kind of housing people want and need, plus it’s risky, with the potential for broad-reaching economic and development implications,” says Beer. According to Beer, the situation is made even more worrisome when federal and provincial governments are both tinkering in the market independent of each other.

“As governments continue to tinker, rather than deal with the root cause of BC’s real estate market woes, they are very likely to harm the very people they aim to protect and support,” concludes Beer.

Preparing a Home for Show with Kids in Tow 
Have your home “show ready” at a moment’s notice!

When your home’s on the market, getting ready for showings can be a real challenge but it's even harder when you share your home with little ones!

The trick to selling a house with kids is to try and make it appeal to buyers who have children as well as those who don’t. Here are a few tips to help you prepare your home for show with kids in tow:

  1. Depersonalize - It's important that buyers are able to imagine themselves living in your home so clear the kids’ artwork off the fridge and take down photos, awards and mementos.


  2. Play Time's Over - Keep just one box of toys on hand and pack up the rest as too many toys look messy and make rooms appear smaller.


  3. Clean Your Room! - Pack up stuffed animals, books and trophies in the kids’ rooms. Any remaining items should be placed on shelves instead of the floor.


  4. Behind Closed Doors - Buyers can never get enough closet space so get rid of any clothes and shoes that are out-of-season or that your kids have outgrown.


  5. Time to Grow Up - Buyers should be able to visualize your playroom as their rec room so get rid of kid clutter like arts and crafts so it’ll appear large enough for their pool table.


  6. Curb Appeal - Don't leave toys, sidewalk chalk or bikes strewn outside your home as drive-by viewings can occur at any time.

  7. Ready to Go - Have a diaper bag that’s ready with everything you need in case you have to make a quick getaway for a last minute showing.


Selling your home is a great opportunity to declutter and by doing it now, you’ll have less to pack when it comes time to move. Showings can happen in an instant so make sure you have a system in place that enables you to vacate in a matter of minutes. Although keeping everything perfectly staged with kids can be a challenge, it'll be well worth the effort!

It Pays to Pay Off Debt 
Getting out of debt can be tough, unless you have a plan.

Debt management isn't a popular family topic but talking about it with your kids and loved ones can help them avoid a lifetime of financial woes. Here are a few of the basics:

  1. First Things First - Focus on paying off high interest, non-deductible debt first.


  2. Budget Crunch - List all income and fixed expenses such as house and car payments. Next, list variable expenses to see what can be reduced or eliminated.


  3. Consolidate - Monthly payments can likely be lowered by consolidating debt through a home equity loan as the interest rate will be much lower.


  4. Reach Out - Creditors will often reduce monthly payments if a debt repayment plan is arranged through a reputable credit counseling service.


Managing debt may seem like a daunting task but it can help avoid a financial crisis that could devastate a person's credit rating and their ability to borrow money at attractive rates. Almost everyone feels the credit crunch at some point in their life but with a little planning, it can almost always be overcome.

De-Stress Your Home 
Your home should be a refuge from all the stressors in your life!

Life can sometimes be stressful so ideally, your home should feel like a sanctuary for you to relax in. Here are three easy ways to de-stress your home:

  1. Meaningful Memories - Hang photos and artwork that remind you of happy times in your life.


  2. Mess Causes Stress - Studies show that clutter overloads our senses so take a few minutes each day to clean up.


  3. Natural Cure - Bring nature into your home with some fresh flowers or a few potted plants to help restore a sense of balance.


Life can sometimes be overwhelming but an organized and tidy home means you’ll have a relaxing space to unwind in at the end of a long day. Just a few little tweaks can make a huge difference!



PS Instant Email Notification
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Not meant to solicit clients already under contract.