Category: real estate tips (31)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whether the seasons are changing and it’s time to pull out the boots, put away the flip flops, or grab some gift wrap—there are some quick & easy organization hacks you can take advantage of to make more use of your space and become more efficient in your home.

DIY Hat Organizer

Create an easy solution to hang and organize your hats. The hangers can or simply store with easy access in your closet or hang on the wall if you run out of closet space. This is the perfect way to organize your hats.

What you need: Hanger + Shower Curtain C-Hooks
How to Prepare: Place the shower curtain c-hooks onto the hanger, and just add your hats!

JeweLlry Organizer

Create a place to hang and organize jewelry with a few wooden hangers and some small screw hooks. Adding the small screw hooks gives you places to hang necklaces, bracelets and even hoop and dangle earrings. This is the perfect way to organize jewelry and keep those chains from knotting. The hangers can hang on the wall to add to your décor.

What you need: Hanger + Small Screw Hooks (find at dollar store or hardware store)
How to Prepare: Place small screw hooks into the hanger bar, since the hanger is delicate be gentle! Hang jewelry on the small hooks.

Hanging Scarf Organizer

A hanger and shower curtain hooks will help you to create a great place to hang and organize your scarves. Affix the shower curtain hooks to the hanger by slipping them on and then hang your scarves. You can put as many hooks as you need on each hanger or use a couple of hangers if you don’t want your scarves to be too crowded.

What you need: Hanger + Shower Curtain C-Hooks
How to Prepare: Place the shower curtain c-hooks onto the hanger, and just add your scarves!

Hanging Gift Wrap Organizer

Gift wrap, gift wrap, everywhere! Not anymore with this clever organization hack! Use any garment bag, the sturdier the more gift wrap it can hold.

What you need: Hanger + Garment Bag
How to Prepare: Place the hanger in the garment bag. Add gift wrap, organize however you like!

Cable Wall Art

Why hide your cables and cords when you can turn them into wall art? Instead of trying to make them disappear, display them on your walls. Be creative and you’ll find a way to perfectly integrate them in the décor.

Cardboard Box Cord Hider

Don’t want to display your cords where everyone can see them? Then hide then away in any cardboard box. A decorative one will look the nicest, but an old napkin box will do too.

What you need: Cardboard Box + Desired Cables to Hide
How to Prepare: Take a cardboard box, cut out two canals on the sides and hide the cables inside.

Receipts Drop Box Hack

Stop loosing receipts and keep them all in one place. This organization hack will keep you and your receipts organized!

What you need: Tissue Box + Receipts to Organize
How to Prepare: Decorate the tissue box or purchase a box that is already pretty. Start adding receipts!

Organization Hack for Missing Socks

Tired of trying to track down the missing half of all your pairs of socks? This easy organization hack will keep those pairs together!

What you need: Clothes Pins + Sign + Hot Glue
How to Prepare: Write “Missing Socks” on sign with marker, or chalk. Hot glue the clothes pins onto the sign, start pinning up the single socks.

Plastic Bag Holder

Are plastic bags taking over the area under your sink? Keep the clutter away with this super simple organization hack!

What you need: Empty Lysol Container or Tissue Box + Plastic Bags
How to Prepare: Using the empty containers, fill with plastic bags, and the clutter goes away in a snap!

Story shared by REMAX.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Laura Love Bardell

Today’s couches are so much more than the three-seater pieces of days past. Sectionals are useful and stylish, and their shape provides a built-in conversation area. Chaises — perfect for lounging — eliminate the need for an ottoman or footstool. Sometimes, though, it can feel challenging to find the best layout for your room. This guide provides solutions for arranging uniquely-shaped sofas comfortably in any space.

Determine the Purpose of the Room

Before you begin experimenting with different furniture layouts, it’s important to consider how you will use the room. Will it feature a television and a media console, or will it be a conversational space with few electronics? Perhaps you are decorating the spare bedroom that will double as a reading room, and you hope to find the best arrangement for a sleeper sofa and floor-to-ceiling bookshelves.

Even if you plan to use the space in multiple ways, decide what the primary purpose of the room will be and design your furniture arrangement to best meet these needs. In large spaces and open layouts, don’t be afraid to divide the room into two (or more!) distinct seating areas.

Look at Traffic Flow and Focal Points

Next, think about how you move about the space and the overall flow of the room. Here are some rules of thumb:

  • It’s a good idea to maintain enough space around doorways and entrances. To keep the space feeling open and comfortable, allow for about three feet of walking space along traffic paths. This will help prevent you and your guests from bumping into furniture or walls.
  • Think about where you first want your eye to land as you look around the room. Traditionally, fireplaces or televisions serve as focal points, but sometimes a large window or even a piece of statement wall art can serve that purpose.

Many rooms have multiple focal points, such as a fireplace and a large window, and lend themselves to multiple options. Switch it up to keep things interesting. If you have the space, consider rearranging the room to face the fireplace during winter and your gorgeous view during the summer.

Save Your Back — Use the Computer

Look online for digital room-arrangement programs that allow you to enter the dimensions of your room and existing furniture to help visualize different layouts. Some retailers even offer an interactive app that shows how their products will look in your space.

Prefer pen and paper? Take measurements of your room and all the furniture. Using graph paper, equate one square on the page with one square foot and draw the shape of your room. Then, draw the basic shape of each piece of furniture, again using the one square foot rule. This allows you to rearrange furniture to your heart’s content, without risking scuffed floors, carpet snags or a tired back.

Think Big

Now that you’re ready to arrange your room, you’ll want to start with the biggest piece of furniture: the sofa. Consider these tips:

  • Start by facing your couch towards the focal point of the room, paying attention to the traffic paths and keeping entrances as open as possible. For a sectional sofa, experiment with middle-of-the-room versus against-the-wall placements.
  • Allow at least 6 to 9 inches between the sofa and the wall, as this gives a sense of spaciousness.
  • If the room has a television, think about how you can position the sectional to enjoy the best viewing angle for the screen. (If you don’t have room for a large media center, consider a shallow, space-saving console table to corral electronics, then mount the TV on the wall.)
  • Looking for a spot for a chaise lounge? Try to place it in such a way as to avoid having to walk around it to sit down. The same rule applies for sofas or chairs with extendable recliners.

Consider Your Vibe

You’ve thought about the room’s focal point and traffic flow, but what about how the space makes you feel? Different seating arrangements can affect the ambiance of the room. For example, using symmetrical seating arrangements create a sense of order, while using offset pieces creates energy and visual interest.

In layouts with sectional sofas, balance the weight of the sectional with one or two chairs to provide visual balance and a conversational feel. Chairs on casters allow you to rearrange the room at a moment’s notice, and in small spaces, choose poufs, stools or even folding chairs that you can easily tuck away when they’re not needed.

Add the Finishing Touches

Once you’ve found a seating arrangement that you love, add in the rest of your furniture, such as side tables, coffee tables, and floor and table lamps. Because they have no corners, round side tables allow guests to easily navigate around them, and nesting tables are great space-saving options.

Last, add the finishing touches to round out your room. Throw pillows and blankets provide coziness and layered textures, and an area rug will ground the space and tie the room together.

Looking for the perfect home where you can display your design elements? Contact an experienced RE/MAX Caldwell agent, today.

~ Shared RE/MAX story

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As the Canadian real estate market becomes even more competitive,  buyers are having to make tough choices when it comes to choosing between their housing needs and wants. Before you lose out on purchasing that potential dream home, learn how to weigh your wish list against a reality check.

BIG YARD VS. SMALL YARD

If you harbour visions of hosting neighbourhood BBQs in a big backyard complete with a bubbling water feature and strings of bistro lights, it may be time to scale back this imaginary scene. Sure, a spacious sprawling yard in the summer sounds lovely but unless you are going to start up a soccer-training academy, a smaller swath of sod shouldn’t be a deal breaker. Bonus: There’s less lawn to mow, rake and maintain.

CHEF’S KITCHEN VS. REGULAR KITCHEN

A ceramic double-basin apron sink, a custom-made backsplash in the latest material (FYI – it’s pressed tin) and a six-burner range with a double oven… anyone who’s searched “dream kitchen” on Pinterest knows all the features of a fabulous kitchen. But as long as the appliances work, the structure is sound and the room location makes sense, a designer kitchen can by on your “one day” list, not your today’s list.

BATHROOMS VS. FAMILY MEMBERS

Imagine all the rooms in a house and think through how important each one is to maintaining the smooth, day-to-day operation of a household. If bathroom didn’t shoot to the top of your list, you’ve never lived in a house with six other people and one bathroom. Having the right number of bathrooms for the size of your family should be a priority because it affects everyone in the house… and reduces arguments about who’s next in line.

PREFERRED NEIGHBOURHOODS VS. LESS-EXPENSIVE AREAS

The old trope “location, location, location” didn’t appear out of thin air – location is super important to quality of life. It affects work commute times, schools, community amenities and favoured activities. If these things are important to you, maybe opting for less square footage at a lower price tag is, but if you’re flexible maybe there’s a bordering but less-popular neighbour where that bargain still exists. Consider both options and decide where you stand before beginning your search.

FINISHED BASEMENTS VS. UNFINISHED BASEMENTS

A finished basement provides so much extra square footage that buyers fall over each other trying to get into a property with one. If you’re planning to rent it out as a mortgage helper, than it definitely has to stay on the “must” list. If you’re planning to put your hockey equipment there in between your Wednesday night games, then having pretty pot light and wainscoting is not necessary. 

BEDROOM COUNT VS. FAMILY PLANNING

Having an idea of how long you want to stay in your new home – and how big you think your family will grow – should help you figure out how many bedrooms you need. Moving is exhausting and an epic life upheaval… it’s also the last thing you’d want to do if pregnant or just given birth to your third child while still living in a one-bedroom condo. Could you turn the home office into a child’s bedroom or renovate the unfinished basement with a bit of careful saving? These are all important factors to know before deciding on how many bedrooms you’ll need.

NEW UPGRADES VS. NEEDS UPGRADES

Flashing upgrades such as marble countertops, new flooring and a front porch makeover look amazing but the upgrades you really want to hear about are much less sexy. Updated heating and cooling systems, new energy-efficient double-glazed windows, upgraded plumbing systems, and eco-insulation installations are what you should be looking for. All that cosmetic stuff you can do to your own taste down the road – you want the home’s bones to be in tiptop condition. 

Having a clear picture of what you really need from a house to support your daily lives — rather than a highlight reel of “Cribs” running through your head —  will help narrow down your search and get you into a new home faster.

Reach out to one of our local, team members today, to get all of the details of our current listings. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. A perfect pair

Black and white construction paper or paint can turn a couple of boxes into a pair of die, ideal for couples or siblings heading out for Halloween.

2. Get corny

Decorate a box as an old-school, red-and-white striped popcorn container and attach crumpled yellow tissue paper as the popcorn. Don’t forget to make a corny crown.

3. Hit the block(s)

Dressing as a family of Legos is easy using rectangular moving boxes, paint and paper cups for the knobs that stick out. Top it off with a small, matching box on your head.

4. Robot

Silver spray paint can turn a cardboard box into a shiny metallic torso. Visit Home Depot for the silver accordion tubes that vent the air from clothes dryers to cover your arms and legs (or add extra appendages). Accessorize with tin foil.

5. Best vintage

Enlarge a copy of your favourite boxed wine label and slap it on a moving box. You can even add a spout that dispenses real wine.

6. Real estate agent

Cut up a box to make a collection of “SOLD” signs, make sure your phone headset is securely fastened to respond to clients around the clock and you’re ready to head out as a RE/MAX agent!

If you’re looking for a real, real agent to help you buy or sell your home, it’s easy to find one.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RE/MAX agents know staging is one of the best ways to turn an ordinary house into an extraordinary home. Recently, RE/MAX called on design lovers everywhere to enter the RE/MAX ReStage Challenge to show off their best home-staging skills. Ready to be a star stager yourself? Find inspiration from our seven challenge winners.

Challenge 1: Books/Bookshelf

Using an eclectic mix of metal and natural elements, challenge winner @leigh.nile lets designers judge her bookshelf by its cover. Whether artificial or real, plants add an extra dimension to spice up shelving. Additionally, make shelves more decorative by adding candles and small trinkets to complement the space and make it your own.

Challenge 2: Entryway

The entryway is the first thing guests see when visiting your home, so make sure it’s welcoming and creates an atmosphere consistent with the rest of your decor. Challenge winner @polishedhabitat used a small table with plants and chairs to make her home more inviting.

Challenge 3: Bedroom

When a buyer walks into a bedroom, they expect relaxing and comforting elements. Challenge winner @theothersideofneutral uses neutral colours to give a sense of coziness while featuring a statement chandelier for a pop of elegance.

Challenge 4: Mirrors

Having a mirror in a room creates a more open feel. As challenge winner @shelbygoodman shows, mirrors can be a great center-piece to draw attention to other statement pieces.

 

Challenge 5: Table Settings

When setting your table, go for the bold, like @alishagarrity, who coordinated bright flowers with her dish-ware and napkins.

Challenge 6: Lighting

Challenge winner @melisaclementdesigns demonstrates that lighting, through a mix of modern and traditional elements, can really tie a space together. In order to make the most of your space with lighting, incorporate ambient, task, and accent lighting to highlight certain areas of your home.

 

Challenge 7: Kitchen

The kitchen is the heart of the home. Challenge winner @homegirlpdx uses pops of colour sparingly in this dramatic kitchen to complement the existing neutral colour scheme. For a more welcoming feel, don’t block windows and let the natural light in to make your kitchen shine.

Ready to find out what your beautifully staged home might fetch on the market? Find a RE/MAX agent to work with.

~ Story shared by RE/MAX

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You’re done buying your new home and, at last, the moving truck’s been unloaded. Now it’s time to unpack and make the new place your own – a labour-intensive process that will go a lot easier when you follow these five quick tips.

1. Divvy Up the Work

Give everyone in the family a list of jobs to do, with the big items – like furniture placement – to be done first. Focus on making the living room comfortable so the entire family can take a much-needed break at the end of the day. Crossing tasks off the list together will make everyone feel accomplished and more at home.

2. Ensure Safety First

Being in a new home can feel strange for a while. Taking time early on to address any safety concerns can help. Check all entrances and windows to ensure that they lock properly. Make sure you have enough keys for all the family members. Do the locks need changing? Schedule a locksmith and someone to help with any coded entries, such as a garage-door opener or security systems. Also, know where the circuit breaker is and how to operate it.

3. Do the Paperwork

It’s tempting, but do not put off the paperwork. Transfer all utilities, complete a change of address form for the post office, and update your address with your credit card companies, bank and insurance providers. Remember to make the time to change the address on your driver’s license, too. It’s not necessary to complete all these projects in one sitting, but the sooner they’re done, the better you will feel.

4. Make It Personal

Think about painting some walls and rooms with colours that are uniquely you. Or put up a treasured photograph or decorative item, and encourage your family members to do the same. This simple act will make you feel at home and can make the rest of the unpacking a much more pleasant experience.

5. Don’t Forget To Breathe

Remember, everything doesn’t have to be done at once. Schedule time out for a family dinner, movie or neighborhood outing. Or just relax, step outside to meet the neighbors and take time to enjoy your new surroundings.

Are you thinking of moving? Wondering how to sell your home? Contact a local RE/MAX Agent for guidance and maybe a moving tip or two.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After waiting weeks for the keys to your new home, you probably want to treat yourself to something nice.

Here are some quick home improvements you’ll likely be happy with:

1. Practical problems first.
Prioritize easy repairs and upgrades that affect your day-to-day living, such as leaky faucets, dirty or worn fixtures, poor paint choices, holes that need patching or flooring that needs updating.

2. Head-to-toe detail.
Detailing isn’t just for your vehicle. Your new home deserves deep cleaning, too. Take advantage of it being completely empty, and hire someone to clean every inch.

3. Consider the view.
The right window treatments improve a home’s ambiance, comfort and privacy. They can even save you money in the long run. Drapes, curtains, blinds and shutters block unwanted light, let in the right amount of sunshine and keep your home warm or cool when drawn or shut.

4. Bright ideas.
Proper lighting also affects your comfort. After you arrange furniture, pay close attention for a few weeks and note which areas are too dark and which get too much light. From there, you can decide whether new overhead lightning, lamps or bulbs will do the trick.

5. The right appliances.
Major appliances – refrigerators, dishwashers, washing machines, dryers and stoves – impact your daily life, your home’s appearance and your utility bills. Purchasing the right appliances now can set you up for savings and efficiency for years to come.

Just starting the home buying process? Contact a local RE/MAX agent who can help you find the right place!


1. LESS COMPETITION

On average, nearly half of all home sales occur from May to August. Although most people wait until the hustle and bustle of the spring selling season, you’ll likely to encounter less competition during fall and winter. That means less stress and a reduced chance you’ll be involved in a bidding war. 

2. eager sellers

Sellers become more motivated the longer their home is on the market, especially now that summer rush is over. If a home has been listed for a while, it may allow buyers more room for negotiation and potentially a better deal. 

3. cheaper moving prices

You’re probably planning to hire a moving company in some capacity, whether you’re moving across town or another province.  In fall and winter, moving companies tend to be less busy, which means you might enjoy more flexible schedules and lower prices.

4. quicker transactions

Motivated sellers paired with less-busy title companies may mean a faster closing in fall and winter. Do you want a new home in time for the holiday or new year? It’s entirely possible when you house hunt now.

5. easier to outfit you home

Need a new couch, cutlery or curtains for your new home? Year-end sales are perfect for scoring a deal on these otherwise expensive items. 

Find an experienced agent with RE/MAX Caldwell Agencies, if you plan to purchase a home this fall or winter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If only life were like HGTV. Rooms would be transformed in 30 minutes. Debris would magically disappear. And all the work would be done by model-quality contractors. Reality can be much different – especially when it comes to installing hardwood floor.

If you’re ready to update your flooring, here are some considerations to help you decide if DIY or hiring a pro is the way to go.

What type of floor do you want?

Laminate flooring, like Pergo, can be fairly easy to install on your own. These boards arrive pre-finished and install without nails or glue. Real wood is not only more expensive, but much more difficult to install. Your decision to hire a contractor might depend on how much you can afford to spend fixing mistakes (after the cost of materials).

Are you comfortable with power tools, or is your electric toothbrush a challenge?

True wood flooring that needs to be finished on-site requires more technical skill. If you decide to forgo a contractor, make sure you have enough knowledge of power tools to be safe during installation.

What is your time frame?

Life happens. A day job, unexpected visits from the in-laws or running out of materials can all add delays to a project. Are you okay living with an unfinished floor in the meantime? A good contractor can complete the job within a set timeline, so you can get to enjoying your updated home sooner.

When in doubt, call a pro, at least for an opinion and a quote. Your agent can also help you decide which home improvements are worth the investment and find reputable professionals to work with if you decide to go pro. One thing you can easily do yourself? Find a RE/MAX agent!

As you tour homes, do you stop in the backyard and visualize your friends and family fighting over the first burgers off the grill while the dogs play in the yard? If outdoor entertaining is a priority in your new home, here are four things to look for.

1. Space.

You may be dreaming of an extensive outdoor kitchen, complete with weatherproof appliances and a table with a built-in cooler. Or, your budget may limit you to a Hibachi and camp chairs. Regardless, make sure there’s enough space to host the backyard soiree of your dreams.

2. Shade.

Western facing backyards will provide the perfect sunset backdrop for your barbecues. Yards on the eastern side of a property may leave you overexposed to the sun.

3. Flooring.

If you’re looking to lounge around barefoot, take note of the patio or deck’s condition. Make sure it’s been refinished so you can avoid splinters.

4. Fire pit.

A fire pit can help stretch the seasonal use of your outdoor space by providing a cozy place to gather around after dark. But don’t let it be a deal breaker – fire pits can be added at any time (and may be on sale if you wait to purchase one toward the end of summer).

Looking for an agent who can help you prioritize your home-shopping list?  Find one here! 

Trying to save money? Home maintenance is so much more affordable than emergency repairs. Here are five routine maintenance projects that can help prevent unexpected costs and save you money year round.

1. Clear out gutters

Water from clogged gutters can overflow and leak into your home. Heavy, ice-packed gutters can tear away from your house in the winter. Grab a ladder, gloves and hose and clear them out while the weather is still warm.

2. Re-caulk windows

Drafty windows and doors can suck money right out of your budget from high energy bills. Check the caulk and weatherproofing strips around doors and windows to make sure they’re not dried and crumbling. If they are, they’re easy (and cheap) to replace.

3. Clean the fireplaces

Have your chimney professionally inspected and potentially cleaned annually to prevent creosote, a flammable byproduct of wood burning, from building up. It can create a fire hazard and elevate the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Before each use, make sure your damper closes tightly and clear remaining ashes from the bottom of your fireplace.

4. Check your filters

Clogged furnace and air conditioning filters not only make your HVAC system less efficient, they also can spread unhealthy pollutants and allergies in your home. Dark and mucky filters should be replaced. You don’t even need tools.

5. Flush the water heater

Neglected water heaters have a way of getting back at you when you least expect it (and that way is usually soggy and expensive.) Clear out sediment particles that collect over time by regularly flushing out water through the drain valve.

Looking for your own home you can maintain with tender-loving care? Contact one of our team members today (to view our featured properties).

With warmer weather and longer days on the horizon, now is the perfect time to get your yard in shape for summer. Keep this year’s top four landscaping trends in mind as you get started.

1. Going green (the coloUr)

Combine different textures and shades of green for a more dramatic lawn. Think of mixing leaves of different size and shape as well as plants with a variety of verdant hues.

2. Going green (the earth-friendly strategy)

More sustainable landscape designs have been becoming more popular over the past few years. Why? They’re better for the planet and can reduce maintenance costs. For example, more homeowners are planting “smart” lawns – varieties of grass bred to stay green with less water.

3. Giving bees a chance

With bee populations in trouble, people are actually starting to welcome the stingers in their yard by planting native plants that provide the nectar they feast on. The efforts to save vital pollinators is another sign of consumers seeking more green, sustainable practices for their yards.

4. Going Danish

The Danish concept of ‘hygge’ is about creating an atmosphere of coziness by embracing life’s simple pleasures. How do you implement hygge in your yard? Add features that promote mindfulness, such as water fountains or aromatic flowers, and arrange seating in a way that encourages conversation. And don’t forget to include spaces that inspire play – for kids and adults. The experts at GardenDesign note an uptick in requests for things like bocce pits, fireplaces and hammocks, features to help home owners relax and play outdoors.

Looking for a new home with space for a bocce pit? Talk to a RE/MAX agent.