Kitchener-Waterloo Real Estate News from Kenny & Lori Chen November 2017   
  Real Estate News

Kenny & Lori Chen
Broker & Sales Represtative

901 Victoria St. N.
Kitchener, Ontario
519-500-3588 or 1-888-615-9231
Fluent in Mandarin, Taiwanese & Cantonese

Having your home broken into is a traumatic experience that you definitely want to avoid so this month's article shares some tips on how to increase your home's security.

There are also some great feng shui ideas to help you create a harmonious home environment as well as a few tips on how to build a more close-knit community.

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!

Kenny & Lori

In this issue...
Kitchener-Waterloo Real Estate Market Update 
Residential sales were steady during October.

Last month a total of 481 residential properties sold in Kitchener-Waterloo and area through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR).

Home sales in October were down 16.6 per cent compared to the same month last year, but still above the previous 5-year October average of 464 sales.

On a year-to-date basis 5,842 residential units have sold compared to 5,816 during the same period in 2016, an increase of 0.4 per cent.

October’s sales included 289 detached homes (down 20.2 per cent), and 107 condominium units (down 17.7 per cent) which includes any property regardless of style (i.e. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc.).  Sales also included 44 semi-detached homes (down 7.3 per cent) and 38 freehold townhouses (down 2.6 per cent).

The average price of all residential properties sold last month increased 11.4 per cent to $454,398 compared to October 2016.  Detached homes sold for an average price of $541,368, an increase of 13.1 per cent compared to October 2016.

During this same period, the average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $249,993 for an increase of 11 per cent.  Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $349,316 (up 13.7 per cent) and $354,668 (up 8 per cent) respectively.

The median price of all residential properties sold in October increased 11.7 per cent to $419,000, and the median price of a detached home during the same period increased 10.2 per cent to $484,000.

“While the number of home sold so far this year is pretty much on pace with last year’s record breaking results, the demand from buyers continues to outpace new listings entering the market,” says James Craig, President of KWAR.  “I anticipate this continuing for the remainder of the year while buyers rush to beat the additional mortgage changes.”

Unit#4-431 Keats Way. Good cash flow and investment near U of W 
Good cash flow and investment near U of W for only $249,900

Attention first time home buyers and investors. Welcome to unit#4-431 Keats Way, Waterloo. You don't want to miss out on this Beechwood townhouse condo, with 3+1 bedrooms! Master Bedroom with walk-in closet. Close to the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University, walking distance to public schools, amenities, and transit. Ideal accommodation for your child while they attend university, with the opportunity to rent out other rooms. Loaded with potential. Updated: 2012 Hot Water Heater, 2013 Water Softener, 2015 Dryer, and 2016 Stove. Call us now to book your private viewing! MLS®#: 30607248.

Citycentre condo in downtown Kitchener 
Welcome to #1210-85 Duke St. W in downtown Kitchener for $419,900

It is ready for you to move in and live in City Center Condo of Downtown Kitchener. Spacious 2 bedrooms, 2 baths and features 985 interior/65 exterior square feet, perfect for professionals! This sophisticated residence offers spectacular views. City Center is walking distance (97 Walk Score) to restaurants, shops, Kitchener Market, parks, schools, besides City Hall and an ION/LRT stop right at your front door. That island in the Kitchener has been upgraded to larger countertop size and new cooking pots drawers were installed. One parking and one locker included. Call us now to book your private viewing! MLS®#:30611154.

Single detached home at Laurel Creek, Waterloo close to SJAM 
Single detached home at Laurel Creek, Waterloo close to SJAM $499,900

Welcome to 839 Laurelwood Dr., located in Waterloo's West End! This beautiful, move in ready home offers 3 bedrooms with open second floor den/4th bedroom potential, 2 bathrooms, attached garage, partially finished basement, and a beautifully landscaped yard! Conveniently located near some of the top schools in the Region, both Universities, YMCA, Library, Shopping, Restaurants, Bus Route #13, and Beautiful Laurel Creek! Don't miss out on this one!! Call to book your personal tour today! MLS®#:30607588.

Grand River North area of Kitchener. Raised Bungalow for sale 
Lots of potentials and only $499,900

Welcome to 6 Westchester Place, Grand River North area of Kitchener. 3+1 Bedrooms, 2 full bathrooms raised bungalow with 2000+ Sq Ft living space. Potential in-law suite set up in the basement with entry from the garage. 13' x 14' bright sunroom to enjoy the nice, big backyard. 2017 new roof. Steps away from all amenities, 401 access, the Grand River and gorgeous trails. This lovely family home has a lot of potentials that you won't want to miss out on. Call us now to book your private viewing. MLS®#:30600025.

Kitchener Christkindl Market 
Make some memories at the 21st annual Christkindl Market!

The Christkindl Market at Kitchener City Hall is a four-day, indoor/outdoor event that lights up the heart of downtown Kitchener with its magical holiday spirit.

A variety of bands, choirs and dance groups will be on hand to entertain you on the huge outdoor stage.  There will also be over 70 vendors selling their wares to help you get a head start on your Christmas shopping.

This year, the festival has been expanded to include more spots along King Street where you can enjoy Gluhwein (traditional German mulled wine) along with a variety of sweet and savoury German foods to sample.

The opening ceremony, which begins with a candlelight procession up Gaukle Street to Kitchener City Hall, will feature the Hallelujah Chorus by the Grand Philharmonic Choir and will end with the official lighting of Carl Zehr Square.

Be sure to set aside some time between Thursday, December 7th and Sunday, December 10th to experience the joy of the Kitchener Christkindl Market.   Ho Ho Hope to see you there!

Smart Home Security Made Simple 
A fully secure home will provide you with peace of mind.

Whether you’re at home sleeping or away on vacation, it’s important to know that your home is secure.  A secure home is also much more attractive to potential buyers when it comes time to sell.

Smart lighting, remote locks and wireless cameras can all make your home safer; however, the issue of cyber criminals hacking into smart home systems is a valid concern so homeowners shouldn’t forget about the basics.

Eliminate potential hiding spots by trimming down bushes that are around your windows and doors.  Most thieves are opportunists who see an open door or window and decide to take a chance and see what they can make off with.

Next, install strike plates on your doors to help protect the deadbolt from crowbars or kick attacks.  Thieves want to get into your home as quickly as possible so if one forceful kick doesn't work, they’ll likely turn and run.

Windows are also popular break in points so install heavy sash or keyed locks.  Installing an eyebolt in window corners also prevents the window from being opened from the outside.  Glass block windows are an excellent choice as they look attractive, can't be opened and are extremely difficult to break.

Give the impression your home is lived in while you're away on vacation by installing a dusk-to-dawn porch light.  Although technology allows you to control blinds and lights right from your smartphone, you'll still need to find someone to rake your leaves as there isn’t an app for that yet!

When it comes to home security, paying attention to the little things can often make a huge difference so take time to "case the joint" and list all the security failures that burglars would appreciate.  Potential buyers will prefer a secure home as it's one less thing for them to worry about so you may as well do it sooner than later so that you can enjoy the benefits as well.

The Feng Shui Way 
Creating good feng shui around your home is easier than you think!

Feng shui is an ancient Chinese practice that helps achieve a harmonious living environment in order to promote happiness and prosperity.  Here are a few ideas to enhance the energy flow around your home:

  1. Think Outside the Nest - Birds bring great energy so add a few feeders and a bird bath in your backyard.

  2. The Right Path - Place a few plants and wind chimes on your porch and make sure the path to your front door is unobstructed.

  3. Fire & Ice - Essential oils, crystals, candles and water features such as fountains and fish bowls will bring calm and balance into your home.

  4. Mirror, Mirror - The strategic placement of mirrors helps improve feng shui by drawing more sunlight into otherwise murky rooms and by expanding narrow areas such as hallways.

  5. De-clutter - Clearing your home of clutter will introduce a smoother flow of energy.  Clutter is a sign of trapped energy so be ruthless and get rid of everything you don’t need.

Feng shui emphasizes that our physical surroundings have an impact on our emotional well-being so it’s important to be aware of how we arrange our space.  Buyers often feel certain vibes when they enter a home so a "harmonious feel" could be the difference between a quick sale and one that drags on.

Building a Better Community 
Getting to know the people living around you offers plenty of benefits!

Research shows that there are many physical and mental health benefits to enjoying a sense of belonging.  Here are a few ideas to help you build community spirit:

  1. Rags to Riches - Organize a garage sale or clothing swap in your ‘hood.  It’s also a great way to get rid of clutter!

  2. Clean Green - Coordinate a park clean-up and then enjoy drinks and snacks that will hopefully be donated by a local business.

  3. Book Smart - Build a “Little Library” at your local park or on your front lawn and enjoy watching people gather to exchange books.

Getting to know people who live close by will really improve your quality of life and foster a sense of belonging.  Social media can also help build a safe, connected, friendly place to live by providing a platform to share events and ideas.

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.