Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

June 13, 2021

5 Ways To Spruce Up Your Balcony

5 Ways To Spruce Up Your Balcony

Sprucing up one’s balcony can be a great way to extend living space and enjoy beautiful weather. That being said, there are a fair number of considerations to be made when planning a revamp, as space constraints can play a large factor in what is possible, and what is not. Regardless of size, these 5 tips will help transform any balcony space into a tranquil, floating oasis. 

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Posted in Market Updates
June 13, 2021

10 Tips for Moving Out for the First Time

10 Tips For Moving Out For The First Time

Moving out for the first time is an exciting, though somewhat daunting process! Maybe you are starting University, relocating for a job, or purchased your first home. Regardless of what your reasoning is, there are a lot of things to consider, prepare for and do. 

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June 4, 2021

5 Things To Watch Out For While Doing A Home Inspection

5 Things to Watch Out For During Home Inspection

A home inspection is one of the most important aspects of purchasing a new home. When you’re spending your hard-earned money on a home, you want to be sure that you’re getting a property that won’t drain you financially and that you’re getting your money’s worth. Some provinces have recently enacted laws to increase the standards for the level of inspections performed on homes for sale.

With increased importance on the minimum standard for inspections, interested buyers aren’t totally off the hook. Being involved in your home inspection is something you should want to do to ensure you know what you’re getting into with a home you love. Any realtor or inspector will insist you’re there during the inspection, which can typically take half a day. You want to be thoroughly involved in the process, not just in the room while it’s happening. When you see what’s going on, you can ask questions and really comprehend all the details of your future home. Your mortgage is likely contingent on whether or not the inspection goes well, and an inadequate inspection gives you bargaining power. Here are five things to pay close attention to during a home inspection. 

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Posted in Market Updates
June 4, 2021

The Ultimate Guide To Buying A Penthouse In Vancouver

Ultimate Guide to Buying a Penthouse in Vancouver

Vancouver penthouses are the ultimate in luxury condo living. While you’re looking to spend anywhere between $1 million and $11 million in Vancouver, penthouses are worth the money for many wealthy people for the perks that come along with them. If you’re interested in buying a Vancouver penthouse or Surrey penthouse, keep reading. 

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Posted in purchasing a home
June 4, 2021

The Ultimate Guide To Buying A Loft In Vancouver

Ultimate Guide To Buying a Loft in Vancouver

Vancouver lofts are a dreamy and desirable housing type in the city for many people. Many historical buildings have been converted into fantastic loft homes that are charming, industrial, and unique compared to new construction homes. If you’re interested in buying a Vancouver loft, keep reading. 

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Posted in purchasing a home
April 25, 2021

Thinking About Buying A Condo? Here the Top 5 Things You Need to Know

Thinking About Buying a Condo? Top 5 Things You Need to Know

Condominiums are a great housing option for a number of different reasons. Whether you are attracted to the prospective amenities, low maintenance lifestyle, or turn-key and go options, condos have steadily increased in popularity over the years. While you may be ready to make the purchase, there are some things to consider which differ from a traditional home purchase. Below is a list of the top 5 things you need to know before buying a condominium.

Style 

Condos come in many different formats, ranging from apartment style units in high rise buildings to free standing single family homes. Depending on your wants, needs and lifestyle, different condominiums styles will suit different buyers. Here is a glimpse at some of the most popular condo styles available. 

Low, Mid- and High-Rise, Apartment:

These condo units are found in either low-, mid- or high-rise residential buildings. Many times, these units present much like an apartment and are single level with patios or balconies. Depending on the building, there are a wide range of floor-plans and layout options. 

Attached: 

Attached condos are a popular style and are found within designated condominium communities. Units within attached communities will share at least one adjoining wall with another unit. Condos are varied in layout and style and many times can include garages, backyards, and patios. Homes can be one- to three-levels depending on the community. 

Lofts: 

Loft condos are generally found within old, converted industrial buildings. These styles are popular and trendy and seem to be concentrated in urban neighborhoods in large cities. Lofts are attractive for their wide open layouts, high ceilings and large windows. 

Penthouse: 

A penthouse condo is most commonly found in a high-rise building and occupies the upper floors of the community. These expansive units generally span the entire floor and offer the utmost in luxury and exclusivity. Many times buyers will find many bedrooms and bathrooms along with bonus rooms, multiple balcones and outdoor gardens. Luxury buildings may also have penthouses that feature private pools, hot tubs and more. 

Detached: 

Detached condos are often mistaken for single family detached homes, and though structurally they may be the same, the difference lies in ownership. Most commonly found in suburban neighborhoods, detached condo communities offer a variety of housing styles, though fairly common are a traditional bungalow or one-level home. These communities offer much of the same benefits of other styles which include common area, maintenance and more. 

Condo Fees

When buying a condo, you will want to take into consideration the monthly condo fees. w. Depending on your condo corporation, these fees can be rather significant and can quickly change your overall budget.

Though an additional expense, condo fees do provide a handful of perks. Some of the features included could be fitness centers, party rooms, lawn maintenance, snow removal, additional security, and more. You also will want to inquire if there are any scheduled increases, and if so, how much. 

If buying a resale rather than brand new, you will want to ensure there is enough money in the reserve fund to date. This can help you determine the financial health of the corporation; the better they are financially, the lower your condo fees may be. 

A reverse fund is the condo corporations money set aside for major repairs such as new roofs, heating, plumbing and electrical. Buying into a condominium that isn’t financially stable may not be the best investment for you. If a major repair is needed, you want to have the security of knowing everything will be ok. Knowing those big repairs that are sometimes needed will be taken care of can reduce a buyer’s stress level.  

Related Post: Crucial Mistakes to Avoid as a First Time Home Buyer

Condo Unit Exposure

Not everyone considers this when looking at your potentially new condo, but it is easily as important as some of the other factors you will be taking into consideration before purchasing. Knowing what direction your balcony faces can help determine how much natural sunlight your new condo might give you. Natural sunlight can help you save money on hydro and use less heat in those cold winter months.

Did you know that direct eastern exposure (sunrise) can warm a suite significantly for a period of time? This may sound great during the winter months, however, come summer the additional heat may translate into higher A/C bills. 

If you are looking at a condo that offers you a northern exposure balcony, you will have almost no direct sunlight for over half the year. No natural sunlight means more lights on during the day and higher thermostat temperature to keep you warm. 

However, there is an option that will make most people happy and this is the southwestern exposure. You get the best of both worlds! Plenty of natural sunlight without too much heat, meaning no need to crank the thermostat during the winter or the A/C during the summer.

Location

Location plays an important role in any real estate purchase. Which area of the city is best suitable will depend on a few different factors such as work, schools, accessibility, and lifestyle. 

Condos, especially, apartment or townhome style communities, are typically found in more urban settings as they take up less space than traditional, free standing properties. So if you are wanting to live in the suburbs, it may be more difficult to find a condo community. That being said, in smaller towns and cities, there is an increased popularity of free standing condos, which for all intents and purposes appear as single family detached homes, however ownership style is inline with condominiums. 

Regardless of the style of condominium best suits your life, you will want to consider your lifestyle. Do you have children? Is there a specific school you want them to attend? Do you want to be close to work? Do you drive, or rely on public transit? All these questions are important to answer before setting your heart on a particular building. 

Condo Rules and Regulations 

Usually, when people buy their home, one huge benefit that comes along with it is having the freedom to do whatever you please when you move in. Buying a condo, however, doesn’t always allow for this luxury

Depending on the style of condo, there can be a handful of different rules and regulations in place. Some common rules include restrictions on animals, renovations, outdoor decorations, fencing, and pools. If you have plans for a total makeover or even a small reno, it would be prudent to thoroughly review the rules and restrictions. 

Purchasing real estate is a big decision and regardless of ownership style, should be done so with considerable thought and research. Though condos are a popular real estate option, they do present a handful of unique differences. As such, a little extra time and a few extra questions will go a long way when getting ready to purchase a condo, and could potentially save you from issues or costly problems in the future! 

Posted in purchasing a home
April 29, 2020

Relocating in 2020? Follow these steps.

Relocating in 2020? Follow These Moving Tips for a Stress-free Transition!

Jan. 29, 2019

1102 328 Clarkson St New Westminster

Posted in Listings
Jan. 29, 2019

705 719 Princess St New Westminster

Posted in Listings
Jan. 29, 2019

1903 719 Princess St, New Westminster

Posted in Listings