Moving can be extremely stressful if you don't plan out the details ahead of time. This month's article offers a pre-move checklist that will help you prepare for the big day!
There's also some advice on how to create a fire escape plan for your home as well as a few tips on how to help get the kids back into the school sleep routine.
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!
Victoria Real Estate Market Update
Victoria housing market sill finding its balance.
A total of 651 properties sold in the Victoria Real Estate Board region this July, 17.6 per cent fewer than the 790 properties sold in July of last year, and an 8.1 per cent decrease from June 2018.
Sales of condominiums were down 22.6 per cent from last year in July with 188 units sold. Sales of single family homes were down 16.5 per cent from 2017 with 340 sold this July.
"We are in a different market now than what we have seen for the past two years," says Victoria Real Estate Board President Kyle Kerr.
"And while we see inventory creeping up after the drought in 2017, especially in the multi-million-dollar range, across our region there are 30 per cent fewer homes listed for sale under $750,000 than this time last year. This means that if you are shopping in the $750,000-or-less bracket, you are in a fast-moving market with low inventory.”
“For example, of the 176 single family detached properties sold in our Core and Malahat regions during the month of July, only 59 (34%) were listed for $750,000 or less. And of those, 28 (47%) sold at or over list price. This illustrates the high demand for homes at or below this price point, and the pressure that is still pushing that segment of our market.”
“If you are looking for a home priced at $1.5 million or above, there is more selection than last year and those homes are sitting on the market longer. For the first seven months of 2017 there were 481 single family detached properties for sale listed at $1.5 million or above. For the same time period in 2018, there were 664 properties for sale in this range, an increase of 27.6 per cent."
There were a total of 2,607 active listings for sale on the Victoria Real Estate Board Multiple Listing Service® at the end of July 2018, an increase of 0.5 per cent compared to the month of June and 35.7 per cent more than the 1,921 active listings for sale at the end of July 2017.
"Each year we tend to see a plateau in inventory over the summer months," adds President Kerr. "It is possible that we will see more inventory come into the market through the fall when there is often a burst of activity in our market, but it's hard to predict how that inventory might be priced. Ideally, we will see more inventory come in at under the $750,000 level to help push our housing market into more balanced territory across all segments."
The Multiple Listing Service® Home Price Index benchmark value for a single family home in the Victoria Core in July 2017 was $834,200, while the benchmark value for the same home in July 2018 increased by 5.5 per cent to $880,000, slightly lower than June's value of $889,600. The MLS® HPI benchmark value for a condominium in the Victoria Core area in July 2017 was $442,100, while the benchmark value for the same condominium in July 2018 increased by 12.1 per cent to $495,700, slightly higher than June's value of $496,500.
Cut the Stress with a Moving Checklist
The key to keeping calm during a move is to plan in advance.
Moving to a new home is an exciting life change but it can also be very stressful if you're not properly prepared.
It's important to create a detailed checklist a few months ahead of time in order to ensure things go smoothly. Here are some points to help get you started:
Two Months Before
- Itemize all of the major items you'll be moving.
- Get estimates and book the movers or a rental truck.
- Have a garage sale or donate items to charity to get rid of excess clutter.
- Start sucking up to friends and family for help!
One Month Before
- Switch your insurance, medical and school records to your new location.
- Arrange to disconnect and reconnect utilities and phone/internet services.
- Notify any other important parties of your new address.
- Start stockpiling various sizes of boxes.
Two Weeks Before
- Start packing up room by room.
- Plan meals so food in your fridge and freezer gets used up.
- Arrange for someone to look after your pets on moving day.
- Return library materials and other rental items.
The Final Week
- Water your plants a few days before you move.
- Put together a small bag of clothes and toiletries for the first few days.
- Gather valuable items such as legal documents and family photos so you can transport them yourself.
- Pack a box with essentials such as cleaning supplies, chargers, light bulbs, soap, garbage bags, etc. for the first week in your new home.
Day of the Move
- Make sure you have your new keys.
- Double check the movers have your new address and cell phone number.
- Have lots of refreshments on hand for your busy helpers!
Moving can cause a wide range of emotions from sadness to extreme excitement. Although moving can be stressful at times, a little bit of planning will provide you with some very valuable peace of mind. With the help of this checklist, you can now breathe a sigh of relief and enjoy this exciting new phase of your life!
Planning a Family Fire Escape Plan
It’s important to be prepared in the event of a fire.
Planning for a house fire isn't something most people want to think about but if such an event occurred, you’d need to act fast. Having a fire escape plan is critical so here are a few points to consider:
- Floor It - Draw up a floor plan of your home that shows at least two ways out of each room.
- Keep it Clear - Ensure there aren’t any obstacles in front of windows, doors and escape routes.
- Practice Makes Perfect - Crawl through escape routes with your family during annual practice drills.
- Window of Opportunity - Family members need to know how to open all windows and remove screens.
- Climb on Down - Make sure escape ladders are accessible and not buried in the back of closets.
- Rendezvous - Designate a special meeting place for all family members once you've evacuated.
- Get Out & Stay Out! - Remind children never to re-enter a burning home under any circumstances.
If you live in a condo or apartment building, ensure you know the evacuation plan and do a few practice drills. Knowing what to expect and how to act is key in any emergency situation so practice your escape plan at least twice a year.
Back to School Sleep Tips
Ditching the lazy days of summer doesn’t have to be a drag.
As summer winds down, we need to start getting the kids back into the school time routine, starting with bedtime. Here are a few tips to help them adjust:
- Screens Out - Don’t let your kids play video games before bedtime as screens can affect their sleep.
- Get Moving - Exercise improves sleep considerably so try and sneak in extra activities throughout the day but avoid it two hours before bed.
- Gradually Adjust Bedtime - Don’t wait until the night before school. Instead, gradually take it back 10 - 15 minutes early until you reach the desired time and get up at the same time each morning.
Being sleep deprived will affect both your kids and your own ability to focus and learn. It’s therefore important to adopt good sleep habits to help increase your energy levels during the day which will in turn help you sleep better at night.