Barrie Real Estate News from Sheila & Stephanie February 2018   

It's important to be aware of the latest home trends, especially if you're looking for ways to make your home more appealing to buyers. This month’s article outlines some of the popular home trends for 2018.

There's also some great advice on how to maintain your smoke alarms as well as a website that will challenge your brain and donate to charity at the same time!

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!

Sheila & Stephanie

In this issue...
Barrie Real Estate Market Update 
Barrie area home sales pull back in January.

Residential property sales recorded through the Matrix System in the Barrie & District Association of REALTORS® Inc. (BDAR) region numbered 210 units in January 2018, down 18.9% from a very strong month of January in 2017.

Within the City of Barrie, sales activity was down 17.7% on a year-over-year basis in January 2018. The City of Barrie saw 107 residential sales in January 2018. A year-over-year decrease of 20.9% was recorded in surrounding areas, where sales activity totalled 102 units.

“As was widely expected, home sales in the region pulled back in January compared to the rally seen at the end of last year, bolstering the idea that some buyers moved up purchases in advance of the new mortgage stress test,” said Geoff Halford, 2018 BDAR President.

“For that reason January’s sales decline should be taken with a grain of salt, as many of those missing sales were likely just shifted into November and December. It will likely take a few months for things to balance out.”

The average price for all homes sold via the association’s MLS® System in January 2018 was $522,053, up 8.7% from January 2017.

The average price figure for homes sold within the City of Barrie for January 2018 was $508,560. This was an increase of 10.5% compared to the average selling price in January 2017.

The average price figure for January 2018 in surrounding areas was $541,321, an increase of 8.2% from January 2017. The dollar value of all home sales in January 2018 was $109.6 million, down 11.8% from year-ago levels. This was still the second highest value for January residential sales on record.

New residential listings rose 31.1% from January 2017 to 527 units in January 2018. Active residential listings on the association’s MLS® System numbered 791 units at the end of January 2018, rising 103.9% from very low year-ago levels but still a little below the average of the last decade.

There were 3.8 months of inventory at the end of January 2018, up from 1.5 months a year earlier but still a little lower than the long-run average for this time of year. The number of months of inventory is the number of months it would take to sell current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

Sales of all property types in the Barrie region numbered 218 units in January 2018, down 21.9% compared to January 2017. The total value of all properties sold in January 2018 was $121.6 million, down 12.4% on a year-over-year basis.

Hot Home Trends for 2018 
Curious about what’s trending in homes and gardens this year?

It’s that time of year when homeowners are thinking about revamping and refreshing their space.  Here are a few of the latest trends and styles that are gaining steam:

  1. Ziggity Zag - Geometric patterns are making a comeback! It could be as simple as adding a few accent pillows or for a bolder statement, consider some patterned wallpaper.

  2. Concrete Ideas - This versatile material is becoming increasingly popular for sinks but can also be used in more unique ways such as furnishings, wallcoverings and tile.

  3. Sleep Easy - Embrace minimalist bedrooms this year with soothing neutrals and plain furniture pieces. Keeping the space simple will help you enjoy a restful night’s sleep.

  4. Full House - Multigenerational living is a major home design trend for 2018. Additional kitchens, basement renovations, and seperate entrances are just some of the ways homes are reflecting this trend.

  5. The Heart of the Home - Homeowners are injecting warmer, brighter tones on their kitchen walls and cabinets. Sinks made with materials like stone, copper, concrete or granite will also steal the spotlight in 2018.

If you're thinking about breathing some new life into your home with a new year’s makeover, be sure to take the latest trends into account during the planning stage. Hopefully these ideas have given you inspiration to inject some new style into your home!

Smoke Alarm Smarts 
Smoke detectors are important but they’re often overlooked.

Countless tragedies are prevented each year by smoke detectors. Here are a few tips to ensure your smoke detectors are in full working order:

  1. Test each alarm regularly by pressing the test button until the alarm sounds.

  2. Blow the dust out of the alarm whenever you check or change the batteries.

  3. Don't "borrow" the batteries for the TV remote as you'll likely forget to replace them.

  4. Smoke alarms should be replaced at least every ten years to ensure proper working order.

  5. Don't install alarms near windows or doors as drafts could stop smoke from reaching the alarm system.

  6. There should be at least one alarm installed on each floor including the basement and preferably every bedroom.

Alarms can be hard wired, battery powered or preferably a combination of both. Interconnected smoke alarms are best because when one alarm goes off, they all do. If you have any questions, your local fire department will be more than happy to help.

Educate and Donate 
Smarten up and end hunger, a few grains of rice at a time!

Next time your kids are on their devices, send them over to where they can learn and donate at the same time!

Users answer multiple choice questions on a range of subjects including math, language, geography and science.  When a question is answered correctly, 10 grains of rice are donated via the World Food Program.

These questions aren’t just for kids; in fact, anyone can benefit from this game as you can adjust the difficulty level. The vocabulary section will definitely give you some mental stimulation so it’s a win-win!

PS Are you sick of scouring the paper and MLS sites looking for homes? Tired of playing telephone tag with agents only to hear the home's already sold? Sit back, relax and let me do the work for you! Just visit my website and check off the features you're looking for. Whenever a home matching your criteria hits the market, it'll be automatically flagged and emailed to you so you'll never have to worry about missing your dream home.

Not meant to solicit clients already under contract.