Realtor, Real Estate Okotoks, Cochrane, Calgary

      


Big city deals with a small town feel! 

Specializing in Real Estate in Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & Area


Call or text 403.700-2532   Email: home@griffinre.ca

Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas

 
 

Most people believe there are lots of reasons that a home doesn’t sell. However, there are actually only five. If you address these five common mistakes, then you will never have a problem getting your home sold. 

Over Pricing and Speculating
We all wish we could ask whatever we wanted for our homes, but unfortunately price is set by comparable properties and market conditions. If you are priced above either of these, then your home will sit for a long time.

Looking at the price of homes currently listed for sale in your neighborhood only tells part of the story. You must research how much homes are actually selling for, and price your home accordingly.

 
Exposure
Even a well priced property can’t sell, if no one knows about it. If you are not marketing your home where the buyers are looking, then you will not sell it. The more of your target market that sees your home, the better chance you have.

More and more, people are using the internet as their primary source of research. Be sure your home is easy to find in the most common places that people look.

 
Poor Marketing
You have to make buyers want to look at your home. If your marketing makes your property look like every other listing, then you are simply “rolling the dice” and hoping for the best. Is your marketing truly compelling?

A great question to ask is... Why should someone buy my home, versus any other home in the neighborhood or city? If you don’t believe that you have a compelling reason, then the buyer won’t either.

 
Presentation
So now you’ve got someone to look at your home, but it’s a mess, smells bad, or simply shows poorly. If a buyer doesn’t feel comfortable in your home, you can forget about the sale.

If you can, don’t be around for showings, keep the house clean, and do some research on staging your home for sale. A small investment can make or save you thousands.

 
Lack of Buyer Confidence
Purchases fall through every day because sellers cannot confidently answer the buyer’s questions; provide accurate paperwork, or verify important details. If you are not organized before you sell, then you may watch all your hard work go to waste as a potential buyer walks away due to a lack of confidence. 

Do Your Homework
You need to be very realistic with your goals when you are selling and you must do your homework. As the marketplace changes so must your strategy. Too many people spend thousands of dollars, hours of their time (not to mention stress) and miss the best opportunities to sell or don’t have the proper information to make a sale possible.

Gather all the information that you need and get the advice of experts when you can. At the end of the day, hiring a professional to ensure your sale is done properly may be one of the best investments you can make.

 

Source: Courtesy CIR Realty

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Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas

Condominium ownership is a very new alternative to traditional property ownership. The ability for a group of people to each own their own units, but share common expenses, and still live in harmony has created some huge benefits for buyers. However, if you didn’t know at least some of the benefits, then you likely wouldn’t be considering purchasing a condo in the first place. We will leave the benefits aside for now… 

The items that most of our clients want to know about are the red flags. What items should I look a little more into before I purchase a condo in a particular building, complex or development? What things may be the signs of existing, past or future problems? 

PLEASE NOTE: These items are only red flags. They are not necessarily problems in themselves, but should trigger a little more research. 

Low Condo Fees
The fees may not include very many of the items they normally would. You may be expected to pay an assessment fee more often. 

High Condo Fees
A problem may exist that the condo board is trying to pay for. 

Low Reserve Fund
There may not be enough money to cover necessary repairs. 

Special Assessments
This is a lump sum of money required to either top up the low reserve fund or to fix an issue the condo has. 

Unresolved Issues in the Meeting Minutes
If the most recent meeting minutes say they are waiting for a quote on something, then that something is still broken. 

Registered Does Not Match the Listed Size
You may not be getting all the square footage you thought you paid for. 

Not All Documents Are Available
This could be a result of poor management, or non-compliance with the Condo Act. 

Post Tension Cables
If not cared for under the lawful requirements, this style of construction can cost a fortune to repair (typically causes higher fees). 

Age Restricted Buildings
This limits who you can re-sell your unit to (or rent). Plus, some lenders will not provide certain mortgages for these buildings. 

Any Stains or Signs of Water
This one is pretty obvious. 

Lots of Units for Sale
Why does everyone want to sell? 

Operating Deficit
If there is more money going out than is coming in, eventually you will run out of money. 

Low Owner Occupancy
Lots of units are likely rented, and tenants don’t take care of their property as well as owners (and sometimes don’t follow the by-laws). 

Monopolized Ownership
The one person who owns most of the units has most of the voting power. 

Unresponsive Board
If they neglect to return calls, what else do they neglect? 

Do your homework and get all the information available on a complex. This is always your best security when buying a condo. 

Source: Lindsey Smith of the Entyro Service Group in Calgary AB

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Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas

Let’s be honest, nothing really matters unless you know how you’re going to pay for your next home or investment property. The reality is that anyone (and I mean anyone) can find the money to purchase a home. In fact, we have seen people who are over $70,000 in debt, unemployed, and on the verge of bankruptcy purchase not one, but multiple homes at the same time. Sound impossible? Read on . . . 

Perhaps you have good credit, a down payment and qualifying for financing will not be a problem, but you want the best mortgage for your needs, and of course, the lowest interest rate available. Sound like you? Read on . . . 

Or maybe you just have no idea what you qualify for, this is your first purchase and you just want to learn how to get started (on the right foot). Well, read on . . . 

Below is a brief outline of some basic components of getting financing and some tips to get you well ahead of the game. 

Traditional Banks
An advantage of using banks rather than mortgage brokers is that you get to deal with someone who knows a lot more than just mortgages. Often, what is best for you in terms of a mortgage might also play into your long term financial planning, and a mortgage broker may not be able to help you align the two. For example, your bank can take into account any credit cards or lines of credit that you may have, along with any savings or RRSP accounts to make sure you have high cash flow and low borrowing costs.

Although getting you approved for your mortgage may be your number one priority, a bank will work with you to make sure that whatever you end up with suits your lifestyle and matches your long term goals. 

Some banks even have access to alternative lending sources that may be able to help if your credit is less than perfect or a transaction is out of the ordinary. Ask your banker to find out which options they provide.

Mortgage Brokers
Brokers are typically self employed and are paid by the lenders (or banks) and not by you. This means that they are motivated to get you approved and also give you great service in the hopes of future referrals. They use as many as 30 different lending sources, which even include a lot of major banks.

One of the greatest advantages of using a mortgage broker is that they work with hundreds of unique situations, often have friends in the right places and know some tricks to ensure your mortgage gets the green light. If a traditional bank denies you, a mortgage broker might be able to help.

Lines of Credit
TAKE NOTE: By financing your home with a line of credit, rather than a mortgage, there are some serious benefits. The line of credit will be secured against the home similar to a mortgage; however the payment options are sometimes wide open. There are no penalties for paying off a large lump sum or clearing it completely (very important when you sell). If your monthly finances are a little short, or if monthly cash flow is the goal, then on some LOCs you can make interest only payments which will maximize your monthly income. A line of credit can also be a better way to refinance your home. You can use as much, or as little, of it as you need, and only make payments on the portion you have used. 

Creative Financing
How do people buy homes with no money or no credit? Well, some banks still offer zero down mortgages, however you still have to have good credit and income. Some self-employed people have lots of money, but can’t prove their income. Sometimes you need non-traditional methods of financing. Here are a few possibilities: 

  • Private Lenders – some lenders will work with high risk clients and simply charge a higher interest rate 
  • Joint Ventures - get someone else to front the money for the home and you split the future returns 
  • Vendor Take Backs – Have the owner carry the mortgage
  • Assumable Mortgages – Agree to take-over the existing mortgage (only available in certain places) 
  • Other Options – Combinations of the above and others unique to the particular laws governing the area
 
Summary
If you have enough motivation and the proper guidance, there is nothing holding you back from finding the money to purchase real estate. The key thing is to check out all your options. If you plan on spending $100,000’s on a new home, it will be well worth your time to do a little homework. 

Don’t let everyone pull your credit rating, have the bank run some hypothetical examples and once you find one or two you trust, then pull the details. The more times your credit is pulled, the lower your credit rating becomes. Get pre-approved and lock into an interest rate. Some lenders will hold a rate for up to 120 days. If the rate is lower when you take possession, you get the lower rate anyway. Don’t get caught if rates climb. Be careful whose advice you take. Some REALTORS® are paid incentives based on the business they send a mortgage broker. Ask your REALTOR® why they recommend someone and if they receive an incentive. Review the terms of your mortgage in depth and be sure you understand the pay-out options, conditions, interest rates, etc. It can be a nasty surprise if your payment suddenly jumps or you have a large penalty for getting out early. 

If you are not approved, ask why not and find out what options you have to get approved (if they can’t tell you then find someone else). Sometimes it would just take an additional letter from an employer or something simple to remedy. There is always a way. 

Source: Lindsey Smith of the Entyro Service Group in Calgary AB

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Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas

Are you thinking about selling your house or another parcel of real estate that you own? If so it is important to follow some of these guidelines to help you get the most out of your real estate and that can possibly save you thousands of dollars in the future. Although this is not a comprehensive list of everything that needs to be followed when deciding to sale your real estate it is list of important items that we have noticed at CIR REALTY which can play a big role for most sellers. 

Make sure you list your property with a REALTOR®.
As members of the National Association of REALTORS® each member adheres to a strict code of ethics that provide a wide variety of benefits for buyers and sellers. Not all real estate agents are members of the National Association of REALTORS®.

Have your real estate agent perform a competitive market analysis.
Often times homeowners will not have the information or expertise and a know how for what other properties have sold for or what your current competition is. A real estate agent working for you will prepare a competitive CMA so that you can look at what other properties have sold for and what other properties similar to yours are listed for. 

Price your property competitively and correctly from the beginning!
Although many sellers want to try and get the most out of their property and take the philosophy that they can always adjust the price at a later date. In reality the best and most qualified prospects will come early in the game when the for sale sign first goes up and your property first hits the local multiple listing service hot sheet. Often times sellers who price their property higher in the beginning and then begin to lower their property over time get less for their property than they would have if it had been priced correctly from the beginning. 

Get a home inspection in advance.
Normally a home inspection will not cost you a lot of money and can be a good marketing tool for your agent when selling your property. It is also good because any major issues or problems that might arise can be fixed in advance. Smaller items that can sometimes give the buyer bargaining room to reduce your cost can also be prepared or fixed in advance of your marketing efforts and can generally save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars by preparing in advance. 

Reduce clutter.
It is important to remember that reducing clutter and as much furniture and other items in advance can help in the sale of your property. If you need to store things in boxes or pack things up and move to another location or to another family member or friend’s property the extra room can normally be a benefit. 

Give your home a fresh coat of paint.
Generally a fresh coat of paint and cleaning the carpets are all very important in helping you sell your property. Normally painting your home will not cost much money and can add a good fresh up look to your residence. 

Open drapes and turn on lights
It is always a good idea to allow as much light to infiltrate your property as possible. Turning on lights, adding new stronger light bulbs and opening blinds and drapes is a big plus for marketing your property. 

Avoid music and avoid being home when your property is shown.
Although many sellers like to be present during the showing of their property for a real estate agent being gone can help immensely in the marketing of your property. Buyers normally feel free to open closets and look at the property without sellers following them around or talking too much about the property. You might also say the wrong information or come off as desperate to sell by being present during the showing. 

Provide copies of receipts on items you have purchases for your agent or repairs you have made over the last couple of years.
If you have installed a new roof and you have a copy of how much you spent for the roof that information can be helpful to put into a folder or book along with any other major expenses or expenditures you have spent. It is also a good idea to have copies of your taxes, the insurance premiums, utility cost per month and any other important information such as surveys or plans that maybe available to help your real estate agent during the marketing process. 

Clean the front porch and front lawn of any debris or items that might be a turn off when people are driving by to look at your property.
Making sure your grass is mowed and well manicured along with a clean swept front porch without a lot of debris is very important in the marketing efforts of your property. 

Make your home look like a magazine.
Having your beds made, clothes picked up off the floor, tables straightened and rooms fit for a picture in a magazine are important and can be a big hit when buyers tour your property for a possible home purchase. 

Be open to listen to suggestions from your agent.
It is always important to remember that your real estate agent is the professional and has the expertise or know how in selling your property. Many agents will report back to your listing agent as to what buyers or other agents think about you property or what needs to be fixed or changed. If this is the case be sure to have an open mind and listen to any suggestions that your agent may have to improve the marketability of your property. 

Again this is not a comprehensive list of what you need to do to sell your property but by incorporating these few suggestions it will help immensely in the marketing of your property and to get you the most out of your real estate and for a happy and successful real estate closing.


Source: John D. Mayfield ABR, ABRM, GRI, e-PRO, CRB

 


 
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Brett Murrell, Realtor Real Estate Agent serving Calgary, Okotoks, Cochrane & areas

 
Most people believe there are lots of reasons that a home doesn’t sell. However, there are actually only five. If you address these five common mistakes, then you will never have a problem getting your home sold. 

Over Pricing and Speculating
We all wish we could ask whatever we wanted for our homes, but unfortunately price is set by comparable properties and market conditions. If you are priced above either of these, then your home will sit for a long time.

Looking at the price of homes currently listed for sale in your neighborhood only tells part of the story. You must research how much homes are actually selling for, and price your home accordingly.

 

Exposure
Even a well priced property can’t sell, if no one knows about it. If you are not marketing your home where the buyers are looking, then you will not sell it. The more of your target market that sees your home, the better chance you have.

More and more, people are using the internet as their primary source of research. Be sure your home is easy to find in the most common places that people look.

 
Poor Marketing
You have to make buyers want to look at your home. If your marketing makes your property look like every other listing, then you are simply “rolling the dice” and hoping for the best. Is your marketing truly compelling?

A great question to ask is... Why should someone buy my home, versus any other home in the neighborhood or city? If you don’t believe that you have a compelling reason, then the buyer won’t either.

 
Presentation
So now you’ve got someone to look at your home, but it’s a mess, smells bad, or simply shows poorly. If a buyer doesn’t feel comfortable in your home, you can forget about the sale.

If you can, don’t be around for showings, keep the house clean, and do some research on staging your home for sale. A small investment can make or save you thousands.

 

Lack of Buyer Confidence
Purchases fall through every day because sellers cannot confidently answer the buyer’s questions; provide accurate paperwork, or verify important details. If you are not organized before you sell, then you may watch all your hard work go to waste as a potential buyer walks away due to a lack of confidence. 

Do Your Homework
You need to be very realistic with your goals when you are selling and you must do your homework. As the marketplace changes so must your strategy. Too many people spend thousands of dollars, hours of their time (not to mention stress) and miss the best opportunities to sell or don’t have the proper information to make a sale possible.

Gather all the information that you need and get the advice of experts when you can. At the end of the day, hiring a professional to ensure your sale is done properly may be one of the best investments you can make.

 

Author: CIR Realty 

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Data supplied by CREB®’s MLS® System. CREB® is the owner of the copyright in its MLS® System. The Listing data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by CREB®.
The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.
The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS®, and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.