Tara Dowding

The best tips we can give as agents is to get your home in tip top shape before listing on the market. Get all the little maintenance items fixed. Make sure there is a good first impression from the street. Declutter the home, remove personal photos, give a good cleaning and make sure the home smells good-but overscenting with incense or oils can sometimes be overwhelming for buyers. Boil cinnamon or orange peelings on the stove instead. Freshen but don't overpower. Make sure the yard is raked and flower beds trimmed back. Give a fresh coat of paint or stain where needed-it will go a long way. Some sellers will even choose to do a "pre inspection", and fix potential issues prior to a buyer coming along. The old saying "You never get a second chance to make a good first impression" stands correct in Real Estate. 

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Alot of changes are happening in the Central Alberta Real Estate Market. Now that the election is over, everyone can get back to "business as usual". As far as mortgage rates go, they remain low and there are many fantastic products out there.  Most of the "big banks" run monthly specials, so it is always a good idea to check with your mortgage broker to find out who has the best deals or if there is a product out there that suits your personal needs. 

We tend to move back and forth between being a "sellers market", and a "buyers market".  At the moment, it would appear that Central Alberta is in a "buyers market". This means that there is a lot of product for sale, and less buyers, which overall brings the price of Real Estate down somewhat.  In the Spring, we usually see more a "sellers market", as Spring seems to spur people to buy.  I think this year will be interesting to see what happens.  There is alot of speculation that we will see our fair share of foreclosure properties coming down the pipe.  This does not necessarily mean that the market pricing will go down-in fact, by Spring, we could start to see the prices going up again despite the foreclosures.  Foreclosure properties are what we refer to as "stimulated sales", and they bear no reflection of value of properties not in foreclosure.  You must remember that foreclosure also comes along with "no warranty or representation-as is where is-"......Alot of times, these offers must be unconditional at the time of offer, and they do not allow for "assignees" of the contract.  In my opinion, they are not "first time buyer" homes, but more for the  seasoned buyer. 

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