K-W Real Estate News from Denise & Paul June 2018   

 
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!

Denise

In this issue...
Kitchener-Waterloo Real Estate Market Update 
K-W home sales were very strong in May!

Last month home sales through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) were up 12.5 per cent compared to last month and down 15.3 per cent compared to last year’s record-setting May.

A total of 692 residential properties sold in May compared to 817 the same time last year. The average days it took to sell a home in May was 20 days, compared to 11 days in May 2017.

“Although unit sales were down substantially compared to last year’s manic market, May was still a strong month of home buying and selling in Kitchener-Waterloo and area,” says Tony Schmidt, KWAR President. He highlights that the ten-year average number of home sales in Kitchener-Waterloo and area for the month of May is 625.

Residential sales in May included 414 detached (down 15.7 per cent compared to May 2017), and 169 condominium units (down 7.1 per cent) which includes any property regardless of style (i.e. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc.). Sales also included 46 semi-detached homes (down 28.1 per cent) and 53 freehold townhouses (down 24.3 per cent).

The average sale price of all residential properties sold in May decreased 2.4 per cent to $482,873 compared to the same month a year ago. Detached homes sold for an average price of $572,206 a decrease of 3.4 per cent compared to May of last year. During this same period, the average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $301,052, an increase of 2.7 per cent. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $365,715 (up 1.3 per cent) and $393,616 (up 2 per cent) respectively.

The median price of all residential properties sold last month was down 0.9 per cent compared to May of last year at $445,000, and the median price of a detached home during the same period decreased 2.8 per cent to $520,000.

REALTORS® listed 1,068 residential properties in K-W and area last month, down 15.8 per cent compared to May of 2017, but up 14.4 per cent compared to the historical (2007-2016) average. The number of active residential listings on the KWAR’s MLS® System to the end of May totalled 1,062, which is 27.9 per cent higher than May of last year but still significantly below the historical (2007-2016) ten-year average of 1,719 listings for May.

 “With interest rates expected to increase in July, we’re seeing strong demand for homes in Waterloo region,” says Schmidt. “Sales are strongest in the four to five hundred thousand price range, and while we’re certainly seeing activity cool from the past two years, once you eliminate those you quickly realize that sales volume and prices remain ahead of the ten-year averages.”

Kitchener Ribfest 
Bring your friends, family and co-workers out to savour the flavour!

This year marks the 15th anniversary of this incredible community event held in Kitchener’s beautiful Victoria Park between Friday, July 20th and Sunday, July 22nd.

If you haven’t experienced this family-friendly event before, now’s your chance to come out and enjoy the delicious barbecued chicken & ribs, corn on the cob, funnel cakes and freshly squeezed lemonade.

While you’re chowing down on an endless variety of fabulous food, there will be a fantastic line up of live entertainment to enjoy as well as a variety of tasty craft brewed beer!

There’s no charge for admission to Ribfest but donations to the Food Bank of Waterloo Region will be gratefully accepted at the gate. Last year, the festival raised over $8,000 and 1,202 lbs of food for the Food Bank. Hope to see you there!

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 Are you sick of scouring the web looking for homes? Tired of playing telephone tag with agents only to hear the home's already sold? Sit back, relax and let us do the work for you! Just check off the features you're looking for and 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 out on your dream home.


Not meant to solicit clients already under contract.