November 2012

There are 8 blog entries for November 2012.

No agent can be available to clients every minute of a day.

Sometimes they're with another client. Sometimes they're at home in bed with the flu. Sometimes they go on vacation or have a family crisis that must be handled immediately.

So who takes over when they're not available?

  • If you're a buyer and you see a house you'd like to tour, who will make the appointment?
  • If you have a home for sale and someone wants to make an appointment, who will handle it?
  • If an offer comes in from another agent, who will receive that offer and get in touch with me?

Some agents simply disappear and expect their buyers and sellers to wait until they return.

Others, like me, have a back-up plan in place.

If you try to reach me when I'm with

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When you list a house for sale or set out on a journey to find a new home, your best success will come when you're able to work closely with your agent. That means your agent needs to be available during the same hours that you are available.

Some real estate agents today only work from 9 to 5 – and some don't work on week-ends. So if you work 9 to 5 Monday through Friday, connecting with such an agent will be difficult at best.

And what if an agent's time is limited in other ways?

Today, some agents are working at other full-time or part-time jobs themselves, so if you try to reach them during normal business hours, you'll find them unavailable.

Some also have religious beliefs that prevent them from working on Saturday or Sunday.  

Do ask

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News reporters may be trying to bring you accurate news about the housing market, but unless they're reporting facts and figures for real estate sales in Vancouver what they're saying could be completely inaccurate regarding our market.

The real estate market is always local, so while it may flow along following national trends, it may not. It all depends upon the jobs and prosperity (or lack of it) in any given community.

Two cities just a handful of miles apart could be experiencing completely different real estate markets.

So how can you know the truth about the market here in Vancouver?

Easily – just ask me.

I compile data based on recent sales and post a current market report every month. The report includes selling prices, days on the

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Today we hear a lot about consumers who, when looking for a real estate agent, simply start calling agents and then choose the first one who answers their phone.

Is that really the best way to choose a real estate agent?

No, it isn't. Before choosing, both buyers and sellers should take the time to learn a little about the agent. To learn more, you can visit their web page, read their blog posts, and read their agent bios. And if you're choosing a listing agent, you can go see how their listings are represented on line.

But back to the telephone…

If an agent answers immediately when you call, it may mean that he or she is between appointments or is working on "behind the scenes" tasks like ad writing, creating a market report, or doing

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Except in rare cases, when you purchase a house here in Vancouver, the previous owners will take the furniture with them when they move out. They'll also take the mirrors, the paintings, the area rugs, and those beautiful potted plants.

So while these decorating touches give appeal to the house and suggest what you can do when it belongs to you, you should be careful not to let them be the deciding factor.

Smart homeowners do stage their homes before putting them on the market. The purpose is to showcase the home's best features and create a positive first impression. Homeowners and their agents want visitors to think "Oh…this is nice" when they see the home for the first time.

And that's good. It makes potential buyers stick around long enough

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Prequalification is NOT Pre-Approval for Home Buying  

Whether you're buying or selling a home here, you need to know the difference between these terms.

They sound so much alike that they're often used interchangeably – but the difference between them is vast.

Pre-qualification doesn't mean much of anything.  

To become pre-qualified, a borrower can simply get on the phone with a lender and outline their financial picture. They tell the lender what their current income is, what their current monthly obligations are, how much money they have to put toward a down payment, and how they believe their credit scores stand.

From that conversation, the lender says that he or she thinks they would probably be able to get a loan for X dollars.

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Housing market sees slight changes in October

The Greater Vancouver housing market saw a slight increase in the number of home sales, a slight reduction in the number of listings, and a slight decrease in home prices in October compared to the summer months. With those changes, the sales-to-active-listings ratio increased to 11 per cent in October from 8 per cent in September.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reported 1,931 residential property sales of detached, attached and apartment properties on the region’s Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in October, a 16.7 per cent decline compared to the 2,317 sales in October 2011 and a 27.4 per cent increase compared to the 1,516 home sales in September 2012.

October sales were 28.5

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