Real Estate Word -- The Hard Reality of a Soft Market January 2009   


The red hot housing market has cooled off and many sellers are left wondering how to handle the downturn.  Our first article shares some tips on coping with today's market so you can sell your home quickly and for top dollar!

Having your vehicle stolen can leave you feeling completely violated but there are plenty of simple ways to make sure you don't become a victim.  Our second article offers some excellent tips that'll make your automobile less of a target.

Finally, the New Year inspires many of us to make positive changes in our lives.  Just keeping a positive frame of mind is a goal in itself so our last article shares some wisdom in the form of motivational quotes.

Thanks for reading this month's newsletter.  Please let us know if you have any questions of comments regarding the articles or real estate in general – we always appreciate hearing from you.  Best wishes for 2009!


In this issue...
The Hard Reality of a Soft Market 

If you're listing your home during a downswing, you'll need to follow a specific plan of action to ensure you receive the most amount of money possible.  Here are some strategies to assist you in selling your home during slower times:

  1. Buyer Incentives - Many sellers offer incentives such as appliances, furniture or help with closing costs to make their home more attractive during a competitive market.  These little extras can really make a difference especially to first time buyers who don't have much left after their down payment.

  2. Price to Sell - Pricing your home correctly in a competitive market is absolutely critical.  It's best to set the price a little less than comparable homes in order to acquire a competitive edge.  Overpricing your home can be disastrous as not only will it quickly lose its 'just listed' appeal but the market could decline further causing you to 'chase the market' into a downward spiral of price reductions.

  3. Use an Agent - You may want to reconsider if you're thinking of selling your home yourself to save commission.  A real estate agent exposes your property to a larger supply of potential prospects which creates more demand.  Your chances of selling for a higher price are far better with an agent.  It's tough times like these when you need an agent the most.

  4. Consider All Offers - You may have to be somewhat flexible with your price so it's important to seriously consider all offers no matter how low they are.  Keep your emotions out of the negotiation process and remember that every offer has the potential to significantly increase despite your first impression.

  5. Get Ready, Get Set, Show - In a competitive market, you have to be ready to show your home on a moments notice so keep it ultra clean and clutter free.  Walk through each room and pack away personal items like photos and sentimental knick knacks.  Space is a huge selling feature so remove any unnecessary furniture to make your home appear larger.

  6. 1st Class Curb Appeal - First impressions are especially critical in a competitive market.  With so many homes to choose from, buyers may not even bother seeing the inside based on the home's exterior. Stand outside your home with a friend who'll be honest so you can figure out different ways to make it more appealing to prospects.

For every dark cloud, there's a silver lining.  Although the market may have slumped, try and stay positive throughout the entire process knowing that you'll likely negotiate a great deal on the purchase price of your next home!  Just make sure your financing's arranged so that when you receive a suitable offer on your property, you'll be in a position to confidently move ahead.

How to Prevent Auto Theft 

Deserted parking lots are stereotypically targeted by thieves but auto theft can happen anywhere, anytime.  Although professional car rings exist, you're more likely to be a victim of an opportunistic thief.  Here are some helpful tips that'll make your car appear less of a target to potential thieves:

  • Park in well lit, attended areas.

  • Never leave your car running unattended – even for a second.

  • Conceal valuable items to discourage 'smash and grabs'.

  • Keep your windows completely shut and your doors locked.

  • Turn the wheels to one side when you park your car as it makes it harder to tow.

  • A steering wheel clamp or gear lock will deter thieves or at least slow them down.

  • Don't leave the keys in the ignition when you pay for gas at self serve stations.

  • Consider an immobilizing device that'll prevent your car from being driven away without the proper key.

  • Install a hidden tracking device that transmits a signal to determine the location of your car.

A car is a major asset that people are often emotionally attached to so having it stolen can leave a person feeling empty and helpless.  Aside from that, it's a major inconvenience so put as many of these measures in place to eliminate it from ever happening.  The more time and effort it takes for a thief to steal your car, the less attractive a target your car becomes.

New Year, New Attitude 

For many of us, the New Year provides an opportunity to plan a fresh start with a new attitude.  The media continuously bombards us with negative issues so it's easy to feel down after reading the paper or watching the news.  Regardless of whether or not you choose to make formal resolutions, try and keep your thoughts positive by reading inspirational quotes.  Here are a few to get you started:

“Business is never so healthy as when, like a chicken, it must do a certain amount of scratching around for what it gets.”
- Henry Ford

“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”
- Winston Churchill

“Yesterday is a canceled cheque, tomorrow is a promissory note, today is cash in hand – use it wisely.”
- Kay Lyons

There are many different websites that send out daily motivational quotes.  Post them on your fridge, bedroom mirror and computer monitor to inspire you throughout the day.  We could all do with some wisdom and inspiration now and again so share these quotes with family and friends as a reminder to stay positive.  Best wishes for a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year!


Let me help you, or someone you know, achieve your residential or investment real estate goals. You bring the vision and I help you get it done. Call me today at (416)524-6530 to discuss your plans or visit my web site to start your search. I look forward to wowing you with top notch service. 

Not meant to solicit clients already under contract.