red house on nanaimo real estate market

Listing Your Home When There’s Nowhere to Buy

red house on nanaimo real estate market

Selling your home can be a stressful experience. We’ve written blog articles on effective staging and deciding what to fix first to help you through this process.

But even if you can sell your home for a great price (we are in a seller’s market, after all), many sellers in the Nanaimo real estate market will have one big task to worry about: having few options to buy. This is true for Island locals who are looking to downsize in retirement, as well asyoung families who need more room for a new addition to the family (and fast).

The Nanaimo real estate market is still facing a supply issue, just like the rest of Vancouver Island. This will take time to reach a state that is favourable to buyers. 

Thankfully, there are other options available for buyers who are afraid of listing their home without another deal lined up. 

Long Completion

Long completion is essentially a buffer period. When you list your home, you disclose to any potential buyer that you cannot accept any offer that completes within a certain period.

Let’s say you come to a long completion agreement with a buyer that gives you a 6-month buffer period to find a new home. 

When you look for a new home in those 6 months, you will have a better chance of having your offer accepted. This is because the original agreement is already in motion (even if it doesn’t complete until the 6 months have passed).

However, this agreement can leave you exposed. If you can’t find a home within 6 months, you will have nowhere to go unless you have prepared an alternate plan.

Find A Home First

Some readers will realise that the long completion scenario carries significant risk and immediately think of a “better” option. “Why don’t you wait until you have found an ideal new home before you list yours on MLS and sell? It is a seller’s market after all…”

Unfortunately, this option is only realistic for those who can already buy a new home today with existing savings or assets.  

A buyer needs to be able to prove without a doubt that they have the financing to move ahead with the purchase.

Even a high-valued home in a good market isn’t enough. You need a firm offer on your property before a lending institution will approve you.

Subject-to-Sale

A similar strategy that can work in some markets is when a buyer makes an offer on a property that is “subject-to-sale” of their existing home

Sure, this removes any risk from the buyer’s perspective. 

But there is almost no reason why a seller would accept it in today’s real estate market in Nanaimo.

When there are a half dozen (or more) offers on the table, why would a seller accept a “subject to” offer of any kind?

An offer like this could blow up in their face at any time, and sellers aren’t interested in trouble like that.

Rent-back Agreements

Another option that can work in some situations is a rent-back agreement, where the buyer allows you to rent the home from them until a certain date.

Most rent-back agreements last for under a year, but it is difficult to predict how the buyer will react to the idea. 

This has a better chance of happening than the subject-to-sale agreement since as a seller, you are in a favourable position.

But you can’t be sure that a buyer will accept this kind of offer. 

A rent-back agreement must come with a Plan B. Otherwise you could find yourself fielding many good offers for your home, and be forced to deny them since you don’t have anywhere to go. 

Alternative Fixes

Now that we have talked about some of the issues with conventional contact-based solutions to this problem, it’s time to look at some workarounds. 

In a difficult market, you may have to make compromises while you find your perfect new home.

Distressed Property

You can technically make a subject-to-sale offer work if the property you are looking to buy is less attractive than the average.

This could mean looking at distressed property. Distressed property is on the brink of foreclosure, or is already owned by the bank. 

This does not mean that the property will be in an advanced state of neglect, or that it will require a teardown. Many distressed properties are simply bad financial decisions made by previous owners.

Look for properties that have been on the market for one month or longer to find situations where you can make a subject-to-sale deal work.

House Sitting Arrangement

Even if you don’t have immediate friends or family who you can offer to house sit for, you can reach out to a company that pairs homeowners who are on extended work assignments or sabbaticals with reliable sitters.

This arrangement may not be best for families with children or pets, but for those who are more flexible, it can be ideal.

Some house sitting arrangements are paid, which can make up for the cost of storing your belongings until you find your new home.

Short Term Rental

For retirees or work-from-home professionals, this option can work well. Find a place to live with a month-to-month short-term lease (or even a vacation property), and take your time finding the right home.

Two large downsides of this strategy are the hassle of having to move twice, and the tough rental market on Vancouver Island

If you are looking to downsize anyways, this is an opportunity to clear out your belongings while you move out. 

Look in less competitive rental markets, which likely means outside of Victoria and Nanaimo. Cities like Ladysmith, Parksville, and Duncan will have comparatively lower rent while still being accessible for checking out new properties.

Finding Your New Home

If there’s anything that we can guarantee in the buying process, it’s an experienced realtor who deeply understands the Vancouver Island real estate market. 

Want to learn more? Get in touch with Jeff King today.

Assessed Value vs. Market Value: What’s the Difference?

Are you a property owner? If so, then you know that every year, you can count on a property tax assessment which results in an updated figure for the value of your property.

 

This assessed value is used to determine how much property tax you will pay, plus gives you an idea what the market value of your property will be.

 

However, in many instances, these two numbers could look very different. 

 

This can be a cause of stress for a property owner looking to buy or sell in the Nanaimo real estate market – especially since there is already so much to do to get your home listing-ready.

 

How can you be sure what kind of sale price you will get for your property if the assessed value is much different than the market value, especially during a period of volatility in the market?

 

Read on for your guide to understanding assessed value versus actual market value, how these values are calculated, and why this information should matter to you.

What is Assessed Value?

Assessed value is a value that is, at its core, determined with a lack of information.

 

In the British Columbia real estate market, there are limited resources available to determine the value of a property. However, the government still needs to determine a value for all properties so they can be charged property tax.

 

It would be impractical to send an appraiser to every home in the province, so an alternative method was created. 

 

This process used attributes like the age, size, and location of the property, as well as the construction materials used and sales trends in the area 

 

Much of this information is publicly available, however much of it is private – like recent renovations made by the homeowner. 

 

Recent sales of similar properties in the area also play into assessed value, but this aspect could be less practical in areas with high sale volume, like the Nanaimo real estate market which is cooling slightly after years of record-breaking activity (tk link out to market report when published).

 

Sales data also becomes less practical when you consider that the assessed value is calculated once a year. 

 

An assessed value for a Nanaimo detached home could have been estimated on January 1st of 2022, but this wouldn’t account for the changes in the market since interest rates began rising (something we cover in our Fall 2022 market report (tk link out to market report when published)).

 

In conclusion, assessed value is a well-researched guess, although there are many factors that combine to make it potentially ambiguous or inaccurate. 

 

And when you compare it to actual market value, assessed value can seem far off the mark. 

What is Actual Market Value?

Determining actual market value accounts for all of the factors that assessed value forgets. 

 

Recent renovations and add-ons, proximity to new amenities in the area, and the “character” pieces that make a home are all accounted for.

 

This is because an assessed market value is determined by a realtor who will have full visibility into the property. 

 

Aside from the characteristics of the home and property, there are also many market factors to consider, like profiles of the typical buyer looking for property in the area, sales within the past 90 days, and how the realtor can market the property.

 

For condo buyers and sellers, there are a whole other range of factors to consider. 

 

Contingency reserve funds are a great example. Strata fees go towards common expenses for repairing roofs, elevators, and common spaces. 

 

Special levies and maintenance fees also apply, and understanding these costs depends on insight into how the condo board operates.

 

This means that two condo properties that are the same age in different buildings can have wildly different actual market values.

 

This is why it is important to find a local realtor with experience and insight into the market in your city or town. 

 

The final actual market value can be defined in another simple way: as the price that the property would sell for given a willing buyer and seller with reasonable negotiation and a lack of maintenance and legal issues. 

 

So, the market describes the price, and your realtor should know the market.

Knowing Your Property’s Value in the Nanaimo Real Estate Market

Knowing what we know now, it shouldn’t be too much of a surprise that actual market value can differ greatly from assessed value. 

 

The most important lesson of this is that a property owner should not lean heavily on a provincial property assessment to determine the value of their home. 

 

The gap between assessed value and actual market value will always exist, so it’s best to get the best-updated number that you can if you really need it. 

 

If you want to know for sure, ask a realtor to do an assessment. Jeff King Real Estate offers free assessments for properties in the Nanaimo area. Jeff’s experience with buyers in the Nanaimo real estate market is essential to getting an accurate market value.

 

Looking for news and updates on the Nanaimo real estate market? Sign up for Jeff’s market newsletter today.

selling a home in nanaimo

A Seasonal Guide To Selling your Home

selling a home in nanaimo

Selling your home can be an exhausting process, but knowing when and how to sell will help ease the process!. Choosing the right season to sell is an important factor that can be easily  overlooked when putting your home on the market.

Taking the right actions to ensure your home matches the season, at least to a certain level, should make it much easier to sell. There are several things you can do to make your house more appealing to seasonal buyers and these can have a big impact on the selling process.

I’ve been operating in the Nanaimo real estate market for over 10 years and I have managed Nanaimo real estate listings in all 4 seasons for all these years. This has given me a fantastic insight into the simple things that you can do to get your home ready to sell. Here are some of my best-kept secrets.

Selling In The Spring

Let’s start with one of the most popular times to sell your home, which is in the spring. As the weather warms up so does the real estate market. I’ve seen this with the spring often being a busy time with homes for sale in Nanaimo. 

 

You’ll want to match your home to the general thoughts of the spring season which is light, bright and clean. The long, cold and dark winter months are behind you so you’ll want to make sure your home attracts prospective buyers by being bright and welcoming.

Sell The Outside

The best thing you can do is to spruce up your outside spaces. Your garden always looks its best in spring, so make the most of it. Ensure your garden is in top shape and mow your grass regularly.

 

You can spruce up the garden by adding a few extra potted plans, buying some patio furniture (or repainting older furniture), cleaning the driveway, and making sure the exterior painting is in good shape.

Keep Fresh Scents Inside

Throw the windows open and let all of the natural scents of spring into your home, especially if you have recently mowed the lawn. If the weather doesn’t permit this then you can add flowers or light-scented candles throughout your home to fit the season. 

Spring Clean

The winter months can often be full of muddy and dirty boots getting traipsed through your home. Plus it is likely you will have spent much more time indoors in the preceding months which can lead to more stains and smells in the carpet.

 

This is the perfect opportunity to give your house a deep clean from top to bottom.Plus, it gives you the added benefit of the clean and fresh smell you are looking for. You can also hire a professional to do it for you.

Selling In The Summer

Summer can often be seen as a tough time to sell, especially to families. Parents have to look after their kids during the school holidays, lots of people are away on vacation and others would rather lie in the sun than go and view houses. 

 

You can still have great success selling in the summer and you are likely to encounter less competition during these months. Use the tips below to increase the appeal of your home.

Let Some Light In

Take advantage of the extra natural light on offer during the long summer nights. Replace dark curtains with much lighter fabrics, tie back existing curtains and open your blinds and shutters fully to let all that wonderful natural light in.

 

Air Out The Property

While the heat of the summer is generally a good thing, you will want to make sure you let air flow through the property to keep it cool and feeling nice and summery. Keep windows open on opposite sides of your home to allow air to easily flow through.

 

Airflow is particularly important in rooms that tend to get a lot of sunlight throughout the day. Warm homes are good but you don’t want the heat to become stifling. Try to avoid cooking anything too smelly before any viewings as this will overpower the lovely fresh summer smells that will naturally occur.

 

Increase Curb Appeal

Similar to the spring season, the summer months will show off the exterior of your house at its best. The garden should be in top shape and your house will always look better with blue skies in the background. This can be an ideal time to have photos taken of your house even if the sale runs into the fall season.

Selling In The Fall

Along with the spring, fall is considered the best time of year to sell your home. Buyers want to be in their new home by Christmas and it is a great time for you to put your house on the market.


Even though fall is an ideal time of year to sell your home, you will still want to follow these actionable tips to maximize the appeal of your home.

 

Keep Your Garden Clean

This is definitely a theme in this guide but the garden is the first thing people see when they arrive at your home. In the spring and summer, it is about making sure the grass is cut and you have fresh, blooming flowers on show. 

 

In fall, the most important thing is to keep your garden tidy. This can be as simple as raking up the leaves in your garden to help you stand out from the competition. You’ll also want to make sure your gutters and drainage areas are clear of leaves so there are no blockages that can easily put a buyer off.

Get The Lighting Right

If possible, try and show your home in the daytime as everything looks better with natural light. Keep curtains and blinds open wherever possible to let as much natural light into your home as you can.

 

If you have to show it in the evenings ensure that you have your home well lit so it looks welcoming, even when it is dark outside. Adding in some extra table lamps in areas like the living room and bedrooms can make a big difference. In the kitchen, bathrooms, and hallways you can put new daylight bulbs to brighten up the space with minimal effort.

 

Add A Touch Of Fall Colour

Smple accents of fall colours throughout your house are relatively cheap and easy ways to have your home match the season. Use deep reds, greens, and browns on accessories like pillows, cushions and blankets. 

 

These seasonal colours can really make your home feel more inviting and cozy.

Selling In The Winter 

Winter can often be a quiet time in the real estate market, although you’ll still find homes for sale in Nanaimo at this time of year. You can use this quiet period of the year to your advantage as there is less competition around. Make your home stand out this winter with some simple and easy steps.

Keep Your Home Warm

Viewers in your home will not appreciate it if they are freezing cold. Arrive at least half an hour before any viewings to turn the heat on so that potential buyers will be able to focus on your home, and not how cold they are.

 

If you have a fireplace, and want to go the extra mile, then you can light it to make your home feel even more welcoming. Be careful not to go too far in the other direction and make it stifling hot either. A warm temperature throughout will be perfect.

Create A Cozy Atmosphere

Winter is the season when people want to bundle up and feel warm and cozy at home so you will want to create this atmosphere for your viewers. Add in some rugs and throws and light a few candles to entice people in to the space.

Add Outdoor Lighting 

The winter is when you will have the least natural light to sell your home and many of your viewings may happen when it is dark outside. It doesn’t help if buyers are turning up to a dark silhouette of a house on a dark and dreary evening.

 

Invest in some exterior lights to brighten up the front of the house and add winter curb appeal. Don’t forget the back garden either. You can add a couple of lights to highlight a nice corner of the garden or any decorative plants you may have. This means your viewers won’t just be looking into a vast black expanse when they look out your back windows.

Sell Your House In Any Season

Don’t let the time of year put you off selling your home. Homes will sell year-round and the tips above will help you stand out without requiring a big investment. These small things really can go a long way. 

 

No matter the season, I can help you sell your home or assist in finding the perfect investment opportunity for you. Check out my latest listings and contact me if you have any Nanaimo real estate questions.

moving in nanaimo stressfree

How To Make Your Moving Experience Stress Free

moving in nanaimo stressfree

Moving to a new home comes with a strange mix of excitement and stress. It is a fantastic new opportunity and you get a chance to make a new place your own. Even with this exciting move there is a lot to think about which can cause it to be stressful if you don’t make a plan and do some preparation in advance.

As a realtor in Nanaimo, I have helped countless people deal with their moves and I understand there are plenty of things that you can do to make this experience much more relaxing for you and your family.

You should be able to enjoy your move and that is why I wanted to put together this guide. It will show the steps you can take towards a stress-free move (or as stress-free as possible) so you can look forward to moving day instead of dreading it.

Top Tips For A Stress-Free Move

Moving doesn’t have to be stressful! Follow these tips to make your next move a breeze.

Make A Moving Plan Early On

The single biggest thing you can do to ensure a less stressful move is to make a moving plan and to make it early. This not only helps to keep you organized but by doing it early you allow yourself some wiggle room in case you hit an unexpected snag, which is almost inevitable.

 

Planning a moving schedule doesn’t have to be very difficult or time-consuming but you should try and do it well. You will need to plan the time it will take for you to pack, load, clean, move and unload all of your belongings. If you are planning on hiring professional movers (more on this below), make sure you book them early to get your desired dates.

 

You will also need to speak to your landlords and employers to arrange the necessary time to complete all of this work. Some people often have an overlapping month between the two places, but we recommend renting a storage unit if you need the extra time as this is a much cheaper option.

 

Make an in-depth moving checklist as part of your moving plan so you don’t forget anything!

Pick A Reliable Moving Company In Advance

Hire an expert moving company to do a lot of the heavy lifting for you. Research moving companies and find one that has plenty of good reviews. The last thing you want is any damage to your possessions or your property during a move. 

 

Be sure to get multiple quotes as professional movers can often be more expensive than you think. You will want to make sure you know exactly what is included in your quote so you aren’t left with any surprises on the day either.

 

Try and do this as far in advance of your moving date as possible as movers tend to be busy on dates like weekends, holidays or at the end of the month. 

 

Have Each Member Of The Family Pack Their Own Survival Suitcase

Have each member of your family pack their own suitcase with the essentials they will need to get through the first few days in your new home. Unpacking can often take several days and you don’t want to have to dig through boxes to find an essential item on your first night.

 

Items to include in this suitcase are toiletries, phone and laptop chargers, medication, and some snacks and water to keep you going. Keep these survival suitcases separate from the rest of your boxes so that you can access them easily at any time. 

Declutter Your Home

Before you start to pack it is a great idea to thoroughly declutter your home. Get rid of any old, unnecessary, or unwanted items as this will save you time, money, and stress when it comes to packing and moving.

 

Donate, recycle, sell, or throw away as many items as you can. This leaves fewer things for you to pack and organize and it will make your move cheaper as you might only need a smaller van and fewer moving hours. 

Gather Your Packing Supplies

Before you start packing, you will want to get all of your supplies in advance, allowing you to pack quickly and efficiently when the time comes. You will need:

  • boxes
  • newspaper
  • packing paper
  • tape
  • old rags
  • moving blankets
  • scissors
  • markers

 

Having a centralized packing location can also help you feel less stressed during your move. Use a spare room to set up a station to easily pack away all of your items. This keeps the rest of your house from becoming cluttered with packing equipment in the lead-up to your move.

Start Packing Weeks In Advance 

How early you have to start packing depends on the size of your house but for larger homes, it can take 8 – 12 weeks. Packing always takes longer than expected so it is a good idea to start as early as possible. This way you aren’t running behind closer to moving day which will certainly make things feel more stressful. 

 

While it may go without saying, categorize everything and pack it together. It is usually a good idea to start early with the rooms that you use the least and leave areas like the kitchen and living room right to the end.

 

Even when packing items that are from the same room, be specific with your labelling. It may seem quick and easy to just write “kitchen” on the box but it is a good idea to list a couple of the items that are included in each box like plates, bowls, or cutlery. That way when you have 10 different boxes labelled kitchen you will still be able to find what you are looking for. Some people even use colour-coded tape, cards or markers to make the unpacking process even simpler.

 

Pack heavy items in small boxes and light items in larger boxes to avoid boxes breaking or ripping as you move. And while it is recommended to generally keep similar items together, you should keep fragile items separate and clearly mark them so extra caution is taken with them during the move.

Ask Your Moving Company For A List Of Items They Won’t Move

Most moving companies will have a list of items that they will not transport for you. This can include things like bleach, pesticides, fertilizers, plants with soil in them, open paint cans, and a whole host of other items. 

 

Check with your moving company in advance to ensure you know what they won’t be able to move. You can then make alternative arrangements for these items or donate, sell, recycle, or throw them away.

Organize Utilities

Settle all of the utilities for your current home before you leave if you can, or at least be aware of any final utility bills you will need to pay. Cancel any existing subscriptions you will not be taking to your new home, like internet and cable services.

 

For your new home, you can often set up accounts for yourself in advance so you are ready to go the day you move in. Set up electricity accounts, transfer your internet or cable if you are keeping it, set up accounts for water, gas, or heat wherever necessary. This will save you having to do all of this once you have actually moved as you will already have your hands full.

Take Time To Clean Your New Home Before Moving In

If you can get access to your new home a few days before moving in then you should give it a good clean and assess it before you move. It is much easier to clean an empty home and you will be glad you took the time to do so when you finally get to move in. Make sure to keep your cleaning supplies separate from the rest of your packed belongings.

 

Take advantage of the empty space to take deliveries for the likes of white goods or measure for blinds, carpets or rugs. 

Stress Less With Nanaimo Real Estate

Planning your move well in advance will lead to a much more enjoyable process. By following the advice above you can greatly reduce your stress levels and you can actually appreciate your new home.

 

Have you got any questions about moving to Nanaimo? Get in touch with me and I would be more than happy to help answer any questions or to help you look for Nanaimo real estate opportunities

staged bedroom

How To Stage Your Home To Sell

Are you putting your house up for sale with hopes of selling it fast?

If you are selling in the red-hot Nanaimo real estate market, you probably won’t have any trouble selling your home quickly.

Regardless of where your home is located, staging a home is an essential part of the selling process. It may seem like just another task to add to a long to-do list, but staging is a valuable way to showcase the best aspects of your home.

Good home staging helps buyers imagine what life would be like in your home, while poor staging can result in a lower than expected sale price.

Here are some important things to think about when staging your home for a quick sale. 

De-Personalize Your Space

When buyers visit your home, they don’t want to have to replace your vision of a comfortable, homey space with their own.

Removing personal photos is a common first step for stagers. In addition to photos of yourself and your family, you should store away trinkets and decor of personal significance.

Even though you might have some great memories associated with those souvenirs from your last vacation in Europe, it is unlikely the buyer will resonate with them.

Clothing, personal toiletries, and anything else you use as a part of your daily routine can be removed too. Think about the anonymity of a showroom in an IKEA store, and try to accomplish the same thing in your home.

Take Care Of Clutter

Clutter can take many forms. First, take care to clean up any junk left on counters, tables, or poking out of desk drawers.

Clutter can also take the form of too much furniture. Many professional stagers will remove as much as half of an owner’s furnishings before any buyer sees it.

Not only does this make rooms appear larger and allow for guests to move easily through the space, but it also allows the guest to fill empty space with whatever kind of furniture or decor they imagine–a much better alternative to forcing them to “delete” furniture in their mind.

Finally, clear up storage areas and closets so buyers can see the full extent of storage offered. Out of season clothes can be taken out of front hall closets, and you should be taking storage bins and other large objects to a different location.

Deep Cleaning 

There’s no such thing as too clean when strangers are examining every nook and cranny of your home. 

Consider hiring a residential cleaning company to deep clean the entire space, focusing on often-missed areas like baseboards, ceilings, inside cabinets and closets, and anything else you can think of.

A home cleaning checklist is a great resource to use if you are taking on this task yourself.

Curb Appeal: A Great First Impression

Curb appeal may seem like a real estate cliche, so it is important to know what it really means when you are staging your home.

Not every home will be blessed with a stunning exterior. But keeping the area well lit without any obvious flaws is a good start.

Fresh flowers on your front porch and minor outdoor furniture pieces like a bistro table set show the viewer that this is a space meant to be lived in, not ignored.

Create A Work From Home Oasis

More people are working from home than ever before, and this means a home office is top-of-mind for many buyers.

Even if you don’t have an office to furnish as a cozy, productive space, designate a sunny nook in your home as a functional workspace and dress it up like the WFH spot of your dreams.

Are you putting your house up for sale in Nanaimo? Focus on creating a dream work from home area. Vancouver Island is becoming a destination for many remote workers. 

Do I Need To Pay For A Professional?

Staging can seem like an awful lot of work. For many sellers, hiring a professional will be the logical choice.

But homeowners who don’t mind putting in the work can save on stager fees. Many stagers will offer a consultation and provide a detailed checklist. This is an opportunity for sellers to tackle these tasks one by one, depending on whether there will be furniture in the home at the time of selling.

Staging a home well shouldn’t break the bank. It’s more about being smart with what you have and avoiding common staging pitfalls.

Want to learn more about what to expect during the process of selling your home? Check out the selling section of our blog, and don’t hesitate to get in touch with us,

Nanaimo realtor Jeff King has over a decade of experience in the Nanaimo real estate market, and brings a detailed understanding of how to sell homes on Vancouver Island. 

 

couple painting a room

What to Fix Before Selling Your Home

couple painting a room

Keeping your home in good condition can feel like a full time job. Unless you have plenty of time on your hands, it’s difficult to repair everything that you need to.

When you are thinking about selling your home, you may have to make some tough decisions about what gets fixed first. In the red hot Nanaimo real estate market, properties have been going fast!

Here are the most important things to fix before selling your home. When the time comes, check out our blog post on finding the right contractor so you can trust that the job is being done right.

Repairing vs. Upgrading

There is a fine line between repairs and upgrades around the house. Generally, repairs are important fixes that you can make to maintain the value of your home. Upgrades are optional fixes that increase the value of your home.

Upgrades usually involve something new, like new appliances or hardwood floors where carpet used to be. 

Kitchen Appliances

The kitchen is one of the most important areas of the home and it also goes through a lot of wear and tear. Appliances need special attention. Take care of any leaks or minor malfunctions, and check your fridge to see if it needs a new water filter or a freon replacement.

Kitchen Cabinets

Loose hinges, stuck drawer tracks, or chipped paint are examples of issues that you can fix with a quick trip to the hardware store and some DIY YouTube videos. 

You should look for the beginning signs of water damage or rot, especially in cabinets that are close to your sink or dishwasher. Even if these signs are purely cosmetic, it can convince a buyer that there are other plumbing issues lurking below the surface.

Wiring and Electrical Issues

Defective or outdated wiring will be one of the first things noticed in a home inspection. This will make potential buyers wary, so it is much better to resolve any issues with a licenced electrician.

Smaller issues could include faulty light switches or missing wire nuts, which are relatively easy to fix. Larger problelms, such as circuit breaker replacements or other internal issues, could cost you $1,000 or more.

Carpets and Flooring

Damage to flooring is easy to spot by a potential buyer when they are being shown your home. Many common flooring problems are easy to fix for a low cost

Look for cracked tiles, scratched hardwood, or stained carpeting first. When it comes to carpeting, ripping out a stained or dirty carpet and leaving the unfinished floor below is preferred. 

Bathroom

bathroom sink

Just like in the kitchen, cabinets are a point of concern that are easy enough to fix with new drawer pulls and hinges. Refinishing a bathtub or shower is also a good idea, as is doing what you can to fix chipped tiles and countertops. 

The main concern in your bathroom is plumbing and water damage. Water stains from past plumbing issues are a problem, as are clogged drains and barely-functioning bathroom fans. 

A bathroom may seem like a lost cause after years of use, but there are many quick solutions to common problems. If you aren’t sure where to start, hire a trusted contractor to help inform your decisions.

Repaint Walls

Painting can be an awful lot of work, especially in rooms that have been lived in for years. But switching to a neutral colour is much better for new buyers who will have their own ideas about the interior design of the home.

There is one exception to this. If a room is already dark and uninviting (perhaps a cool basement room without natural light), keeping the room a warmer colour is the right choice. 

Think about colour schemes that appeal to a wide audience, and give a “neutral” makeover to those accent walls.  Avoid colours that may divide your audience, like bright primary colours or patterns.

Exterior Drainage

A buyer in the Vancouver Island real estate market should be aware of the region’s notoriously wet climate. Anywhere that water pools near the foundation of your home is a major red flag – even if you haven’t had any issues with flooding yet. 

Make sure that the ground slopes away from your home around its perimeter and watch how water flows through your downspouts. If you notice anything that could be a problem, get in touch with a contractor to grade your yard properly.

Landscaping

Even if your yard isn’t a place you spend a lot of time, you should still do what you can to make it look appealing. Your yard will be the first thing potential buyers see when they arrive, and it has a big impact on their overall impression. 

Clean up weeds and overgrowth first. Trim back hedges or trees that are touching the home, and tackle any piles of junk that we all know can pile up over the years. 

Key Takeaways

tray of white paint

When you start talking to your realtor in Nanaimo about selling your home, you will likely hear about the strength of the market as the community continues to grow, thanks to its infrastructure and amenities.

But this is no reason to think that you don’t need to fix some things up before you sell your home. Jeff King Real Estate can help you stand out among the homes for sale in Nanaimo, and command an excellent sale price with some DIY work around the house or the services of a good contractor.

Do you have more questions about buying or selling in Nanaimo? Have a chat with the Jeff King today. 

Renovate Your Landscape

A well-landscaped property can add 20% to your home’s value, and has an average return of 100-200% at the time of sale. Even if you’re not thinking of selling now, summer is a great time to spruce up your landscape and make it a place you enjoy spending time.

Keep your yard in top shape if your home is for sale. A potential buyer may overlook your home if they can’t see past overgrown shrubs and weeds! 

6 Helpful Tips to help your yard stand out:

  1. Make your square or rectangular yard look more spacious by planting flower beds one ash corner. This will make the centre of your yard appear larger. Place taller plants toward the back of your flower beds; that way they won’t overshadow smaller plants, and you’ll create the illusion of depth in your garden.
  2. Revitalize sparse hedges and shrubs by covering their roots and applying fertilizer. Shrubs may become thin when the topsoil from around the roots washes away or diminishes over time.
  3. Apply a thin layer of mulch a few inches from the base of the tree. Many people make the mistake of mounding mulch around the base, which may attract pests.
  4. Create privacy with large shrubs or trellises covered with climbing vines.
  5. Use a simpler palette of no more than three colours that complement your home’s colour scheme. This ties the space together and improves curb appeal.
  6. Focus on the foliage of the plant. Choose plants that have leaves in a variety of shapes, textures and patterns. If you want your landscape to bloom year round, choose plants that bloom at different times of the year.

Want to learn more? Get in touch with Jeff King today.

sold jeff king real estate sign

9 Reasons You Need an Agent to Help you Buy or Sell a Home

Whether you’re selling your first or fourth home, buying an existing property or building a new home, there’s one thing you need: a reputable agent. While some may say you can buy or sell your home on your own, if you’re not familiar with the process, it may lead to more frustration and aggravation than it’s worth. Why go it alone when you can have an experienced professional by your side to help you every step of the way?

1. An agent will represent you. When you buy a home, you may be tempted to work with the seller’s agent, but that agent is loyal to their client—the seller or builder. A buyer’s agent will keep your best interests in mind. They’ll explain the process, negotiate with the seller or builder and help you purchase the home of your dreams. Likewise, if you’re selling, make sure you’re working with a trustworthy agent who can expertly represent you with the buyer’s agent.

2. An agent will guide you through the process. Since agents deal with the buying and selling process every day, they understand its nuances. They can explain often complicated contractual language, handle requests from the other side and spot potential issues before they become problems.

3. An agent knows what to look for. They’ll see things you may not know to look for, such as wear and tear, structural issues or the condition of the roof or wiring. If you’re buying a home, they’ll help you assess the state of a home you’re viewing. If you’re selling a home, they’ll help you decide what updates to make before you list it.

4. An agent is objective. If you’re selling your home, the agent can offer advice about how to position your home in the local market to attract the right buyers. If you’re buying a home, they can offer objective insight into the homes you’re viewing and help you find the one that’s right for you.

5. An agent is an expert of your local area. If you’re moving to a new area, an agent can give you the scoop on the best schools and neighbourhoods, as well as warn you about areas that are prone to flooding, located near busy roads or are future hot spots for construction plans. Similarly, they understand the local market and can give you tips to help your home stand out and sell quickly

6. An agent offers advice based on experience. Agents rely on their experience to give you tips in regards to inspections, price reductions and other issues that may arise during the course of the transaction.

7. An agent works on your behalf. Whether it’s negotiating the sale, handling challenges or objections that may arise, or acting as a liaison, an agent uses their expertise and skill to communicate your best interests with the other party.

8. An agent will continue to serve after the closing. Sometimes issues arise in the first year following a home purchase. An agent will help you resolve these issues and connect you with reputable tradespeople in their networks.

9. Going it alone may end up costing you. Sellers often make a big mistake when trying to sell their own home by pricing it too high. A home that’s not priced right will sit on the market for weeks. Enlisting the aid of an agent will help you price your home to sell so that it piques the attention of the right buyers.

Want to learn more? Get in touch with Jeff King today.

home sale graphic

Advice for Today’s Home Seller

Selling a home is an emotional process for many sellers, especially first-time sellers and those who have lived in their homes for a long time. People sell for many reasons; whatever yours is, here’s how to handle it.

For all sellers: The first time you sell a home, you may be anxious about the process. After all, you don’t know what to expect. However, with the market always changing, even experienced sellers may encounter uncertainty. To help make the process worry-free, follow these tips and be sure to ask any questions that arise.

• Prepare your home. Make any necessary repairs and get your home move-in ready. If possible, hire a home inspector so you know what to fix.

• Prepare your mind. Try to remove the sentimental or emotional value you have in your home and see it as it is: a place to live.

• Make your home available to show during the day. Improving the accessibility of your home to buyers and their agents may help you sell it faster.

Before buying another home:

• Plan ahead to save time and money. If you sell your home before you buy a new one, lean on me to help you find a new home or short-term rental before you close.

• Get pre-approved for a mortgage on your next home.

If you’re trading up:

Families looking to purchase a larger home may only be thinking about the need for additional space or bedrooms, but there are a few unique circumstances to consider while going through the selling process.

Buy or sell first? You may be wondering, should you sell your current home first or buy a new home and then sell? I can discuss the options with you to ensure you make the best decision for your family.

• Price it right. Ideally, you’ll want multiple bids so you can choose the highest and best offer. Pricing your home correctly will help you target the right buyers who are willing to negotiate the best deal. Setting an accurate asking price will speed up the selling process so you can move on to the next chapter of your life, while still getting the most money.

Before buying a larger home:

• Continue to shop for a home while your current home is on the market.

• Create a list of must haves and deal breakers for your next home to make your search more efficient.

• Consider the suburbs. If you want space at a budget price, consider rural or suburban areas where you may be able to get more home for your dollar.

Are You Thinking of Selling your Home?

If you have any questions about selling your home, email Jeff today!
home renovation scene

4 Features That May Sell Your Home Faster

If you’re thinking of putting your home on the market, you may be wondering how to make your home more attractive to prospective buyers. If you’re thinking of listing and you want to update your home, consider these improvements.

1. Hardwood floors. Wood floors are the most popular request from potential buyers because of their clean, versatile and timeless appeal. There are many hardwood and engineered hardwood options to fit any budget.

Cost to install: Hardwood and engineered wood run $4 to $6 per square foot, plus the cost of installation and the removal of existing floors and replacement of subfloors, if necessary.

2. Bathrooms. Whether you do a major overhaul or a minor update, it’s clear that buyers are looking for a neutral, soothing colour palette with modern materials and finishes. To update your bathroom before listing your home, select a basic white toilet, sink and shower, then add modern-looking fixtures and hardware.

Cost to install: Cost varies based on the extent of the work, but a basic renovation can run $10,000 to $16,000, including design, planning, materials and installation.

3. Kitchen. If you plan to update your kitchen before you list your home, be sure to stick to a realistic budget. While a kitchen remodel has a high return on investment, it can also become very expensive. Choose modern, cost-effective options that look expensive. For example, composite, high-end laminate and butcher block look modern, but are more cost-effective than stone.

Cost to install: While cost depends on the scope of work, the average remodel is $24,912.4

4. An income suite. When done right, renovating a basement, loft or garage into a rentable living space can make your home more attractive to potential buyers. Some buyers seek out homes with income suites so they can generate income to offset their mortgage payments. Additionally, if it’ll be a few years before you list your home, you can generate income while you continue to build equity in your home. Just be sure to check with your local zoning laws before you undergo this type of renovation.

Cost to install: Total cost varies, but the average is about $24,000.5