Real Estate Word -- Home Is Where the Smart Is June 2017   

 
Smart homes are making our lives easier, safer and more comfortable.  This month’s article highlights some of the latest trends that help provide homeowners greater convenience and control over their daily lives.

The update on the Real Estate Market is included to help keep you informed of the current market trends.  If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us at your convenience.

There are also some examples of how a strategically placed water feature can evoke feelings of peace and relaxation in your garden as well as a few tips on how to clean your washing machine.

I've included one of my favorite muffin recipies.  This time of year, when rhubarb is fresh, these strusel muffins are the best!!  I hope you will enjoy them as much as I do.

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!

Best Regards,
Henry

In this issue...
Competitive Market for Some Home Sellers 
 Home sellers need to put forward their best efforts when pricing and presenting their home for sale in any market but especially now with a total of  2,112 active listings in Saskatoon. This is the highest number of homes for sale eclipsing the peak of 2,081 in June of 2015. Pricing is the most important decision a seller can make, especially in a buyers’ market. 
 Of these, just under 1,300 are single family homes and about 850 are condominiums with close to 500 of these apartment style. Additionally, 350 of the apartment style condominiums are priced between $150-350,000, making this a very competitive segment of the market. With 848 single family homes priced between $250-500,000, there is a lot of choice for buyers who are being selective on what they want and what they want to pay. Homes priced over $500,000 total 278 available properties with 76 of these in excess of $750,000.  The MLS® system saw 1,035 new listings for Saskatoon in May, a 7% increase over last May, and the highest number of new listings recorded in a single month.

In May there were 423 sales in Saskatoon representing a 7% increase compared to last May. So far year to date the total number of sales is down 2% at 1,459 units. Price ranges between $250-500,000 showed positive increases to the number of sales year over year.   In May of 2017 there were 358 sales in this price range compared to 329 last May. There was a 13% decrease in the number of sales priced between $500-750,000 in May of 2017. Year to date there were 12 sales in excess of $1,000,000 in Saskatoon. Six of these sales were single family homes, two were bare land condo units at the Willows and one sale was a downtown apartment unit. The home that sold for the most so far this year was $2,000,000.

The average number of days required to sell a home in Saskatoon is 48 days. The five year average for May is about 41 days. Based on the number of sales that occurred in May and the number of homes available on the market, it would take 5 months to liquidate the current inventory of properties for sale. The average selling price continues to remain stable at $$349,000. The median sale price also remains relatively unchanged year to date at $329,250. Although the total MLS® dollar volume was up 11.5% when comparing this May 2017 to last, the year to date dollar volume is down 1.3% at $670,000,000.

The market surrounding Saskatoon showed an increase in sales of 10.4% in May, however year to date sales in that market were down 8%. The average selling price for this area is up 7% year to date at $331,450. This market includes the cities of Warman and Martensville as well as other surrounding communities and acreage property. .
  
Info provided from: Jason Yochim CAE, CRAE
Chief Executive Officer , 
Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS® 


Home Is Where the Smart Is 
Smart home technology is continuing to grow at a rapid rate!

Smart home technology has gone from basic security to smart windows that open and close based on the weather and indoor air temperature.  Here’s a look at a few smart home innovations that will revolutionize our lives:

  1. Connectivity is King - The connected home is a huge theme this year that features connected appliances, smoke alarms, lightbulbs and doorbells.

  2. Talk to Me - There’s a huge focus on voice activated products around the home including voice controlled garbage cans, air purifiers and fridges.

  3. Home Help - Robots are being used to offer companionship for seniors and there’s also an innovative, lifesaving cane that sends out an alert in the event of an emergency.

  4. Laundry Lackey - Washing machines that can do multiple loads at once will save us valuable time and there’s even a machine in the works that will fold the laundry!

  5. Breathe Easy - Sensors can monitor your indoor air for Co2, VOCs, allergens and humidity levels and they’ll also be able to expel bad air and introduce clean air to your home.

  6. Robot Cleaners - With intelligent visual navigation, app control and powerful suction that cleans in corners, you’ll never need to push a vacuum again!

Smart home technology is always improving and it’s a major selling point because the higher your home's IQ, the higher the resale value will be!  Who knows what the future will bring but one thing’s for sure; smart home technology can provide you and your family convenience and peace of mind.

Soothe Your Soul with a Water Feature 
Bring new life to your outdoor space by creating a peaceful paradise.

Imagine relaxing after a stressful day at work and unwinding on a backyard lounger while listening to the sound of flowing water.

Your backyard’s the perfect place to take a break from the hectic pace of everyday life, and the addition of a water feature will help transform your garden into an oasis of tranquility, give it a beautiful focal point and may well increase the value of your home.

Water features also create an environmentally friendly haven for wildlife such as frogs, birds and butterflies.  There are a wide variety of solar powered fountains to choose from and by utilizing the sun's rays, you'll lower your electricity bills and won't get tangled up in cords.

Water attractions can be as simple or complex as your budget allows, ranging from a simple tabletop fountain to a full-scale babbling brook.  Safety of course should be a concern if you have small children and if you plan on digging, make sure to contact the utility companies.

It's important to spend a bit of time during the planning stage to ensure your water feature will integrate with your landscape and environment and then once you’ve finished implementing your new water feature, find a comfortable seat, close your eyes and imagine yourself in paradise.

Washing the Washing Machine 
If your washing machine is giving off a musty smell, it’s time for a wash!

Washing the washing machine may seem strange but over time, soap scum and bacteria build up in front loading washing machines which creates a musty smell.

Start by cleaning the rubber door gasket with white vinegar and water.  Next, mix ¼ cup of baking soda with ¼ cup of water and add it to the detergent compartment, then pour 2 cups of vinegar in the drum and run an empty load at the hottest setting.

Clean your washing machine every month to keep it in tip top shape.  If you leave the door open between loads, promptly remove laundry as soon as the load has finished and don’t use too much detergent, you’ll help keep your washing machine fresh and clean.

Healthy Rhubarb Streusel Muffins 
Ingredients

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened 
1 cup brown sugar, packed 
1/2 cup granulated sugar 
1 egg 
2 cups all-purpose flour 
1 tsp. baking powder 
1/2 tsp. baking soda 
1/8 tsp. salt 
1 cup sour cream 
3 cups fresh rhubarb, chopped into 1" pieces

FOR THE TOPPING
1/4 pecans, chopped 
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed 
1/2 tsp. cinnamon 
1 tbsp. cold butter or margarine 
1 tbsp. all-purpose 

Directions
In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars.
Add egg, beat well.
Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Add to the creamed mixture alternately with the sour cream.
Fold in the rhubarb.
Fill paper-lined or greased muffins tins 3/4 full.

FOR THE TOPPING
In a small bowl, combine the pecans, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon.
Cut in butter until crumbly.
Sprinkle over muffin batter in muffin tins.
Bake muffins at 350° F for 22 -25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan.
Makes about 1 - 1 1/2 dozen muffins. 



PS Are you frustrated by 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. This service is free and there's no obligation! Click here to get started.

Not meant to solicit clients already under contract.