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North Okanagan Market Update for September 2019

This North Okanagan Real Estate Update covers the areas of: Vernon, Coldstream, Falkland, Armstrong, Enderby and Lumby.

Updated Stats for Residential Homes in the North Okanagan:

Sell/Inventory Ratio:

16.56% (this is how much of what is currently on the market sold last month)

Days to Sell:

61 (how many days on average it is taking to sell a home. Please note this does not include additional time on the market of any listings that expired or were cancelled and then re-listed)

Avg. Sale Price:

$514,173 (averages can be skewed by a few really high, or really low $$ sales)

Median Sale Price:

$475,000 (the exact middle sale price of every residential property sold last month)

Waterfront Home Sales:

22 waterfront homes sold so far year to date.

North Okanagan overall statistics:

Total Units that were newly LISTED (and active on the market) during each of the past 3 months:

July:  346

Aug: 333

Sep: 271

Total Units SOLD (all property types including raw land and commercial) during each of the past 3 months:

July:  240

Aug: 192

Sep: 187

Wrap Up:

Sellers: As we enter into the official months of Fall, we expect to see a rather gradual decline in the market, both in new listings and sales of current homes on the market. While this year is technically following trend, in comparison to 2018’s decline in sales for the month of September, we saw a nearly 13% increase! So what does this mean for you as sellers? It means that buyers are still out there and the market is still active, so your home stands a chance to sell before the winter hits. In order to catch the attention of prospective buyers, now is an opportune time to make a slight change in your selling strategy! Talk to your agent today for your home re-evaluation, as a small adjustment in price or selling strategy can go a long way.

Buyers: This month saw a rather significant decrease in new listings, as anticipated with the arrival of Fall. However, fear not prospective buyers! There are still a number of great properties on the market and plenty of warm weather house hunting days left before the frost ensues. Further, now is an opportune time to make a courageous offer on the property of your dreams, as sellers are getting more and more anxious to sell before the season slows even more.

If you’re just beginning the home buying purchase, now is the time to find an agent who understands your needs! Reach out to the Salt Fowler Team now to get on our client list and hear about new homes as soon as they come on the market!

Please feel free to Contact Us Anytime: Lisa, Gord, Glenn, Alex, Joanne, Avrill, Christie, Bryan, Laura and Ryan of the Salt Fowler Team, RE/MAX Vernon – Top RE/MAX Team in British Columbia for 2018.

Home Buying Lingo – Key Real Estate Terms You Should Know – Part 1

Buying your dream home can be one of the biggest decisions that you will make in your life.  You want everything to be perfect right down to the smallest detail.  The process of home buying can be stressful at times and perhaps even convoluted.  As your premier agent specializing in Vernon real estate, I would like to share the following key terms that will help you better understand the language attached to buying a home and allow you to be an active agent throughout the process.

Key Real Estate Terms

Appraisal – A thoroughly documented opinion on the value of a property that is based on criteria such as comparable homes in the surrounding area.

Buyers’ Market – A real estate market condition that exists when the number of homes that are available for sale outnumber the number of prospective buyers.  Typically, this type of market sees homes sit for longer periods of time and thus home prices tend to drop.

Closing – A final meeting where the ownership of the home is transferred from seller to buyer.  This meeting is usually attended by the buyer, seller and both real estate agents.

Closing Costs – Fees associated with the purchase of a home that are due at the end of the closing transaction.  These fees can include appraisals, home inspections, lawyer’s fees, title searches etc.  Buyer’s should budget an additional 1% – 3% of the home’s purchase price.

Days on Market – The number of days that a property has been listed on the real estate market.

Down Payment – The portion of a home’s purchase price that a buyer must pay.  This portion is not part of the buyer’s mortgage.

Equity – The percentage of the property’s value that is owned by the owner (the lender owns the remainder).

Escrow – A specific period (30 days or longer) after a buyer has made an offer that the seller has accepted.  During this time frame, the house is inspected, appraised, title searches are done, and liens are taken off.

Foreclosure – A property that has been repossessed by a bank because the owner has been unable to make their mortgage payments.

Gentrification – A rehabilitation and renewal process that occurs in an urban area where demographics change.  Gentrified areas typically see an increase in rent and property value.

These key real estate terms should help you gain a better grasp on buying a home.  If you have any questions about these definitions or would like more clarification, don’t hesitate to call – I would love to help you find your perfect home.  Contact me today to see some of the new and exciting real estate options that are available in the Vernon area and see which one is right for you.  I look forward to hearing from you soon.

 

 

Congratulations Joanne Borowsky – Salt Fowler Team Top Salesperson for July 2019

Joanne from the Salt Fowler Team has achieved Salesperson of the Month for July 2019.

Real Estate has always been a passion for Joanne and her enthusiasm to help others with a professional attitude has provided her with continued success.  Lisa, Gord and the rest of the Salt Fowler Team congratulate Joanne on her recent accomplishments and wish her more success moving forward in her career!

To contact Joanne directly her email is joanne@saltfowler.com or 250-308-9472.  Let Joanne help make your Okanagan dreams come true!!

Just Released!!  Our Foothills Area Market Update for April! 

Just Released!!  Our Foothills Area Market Update for April!  Here is a preview of our Foothills folder featuring homes and lots for sale and sold in the fabulous Foothills area in Vernon BC.  This folder will be mailed out in the next 10 days!  If you are interested in selling your home and having it advertised in this popular marketing piece, please let us know!  We would be happy to feature your Foothills, Vernon Real Estate here!  Contact the Salt Fowler Team at 250-549-SALT (7258) or visit our website to view thousands of homes for sale online all in one place at www.Foothills.info.

November North Okanagan Real Estate Market Update

This North Okanagan Real Estate Update covers the areas of:  Vernon, Coldstream, Falkland, Armstrong, Enderby and Lumby.

Updated Stats for Residential Homes in the North Okanagan:

Sell/Inventory Ratio:   

17.57%  (this is how much of what is currently on the market sold last month)

Days to Sell:  

82 (how many days on average it is taking to sell a home)

Avg. Sale Price:  

$487,022 (averages can be skewed by a few really high, or really low $$ sales)

Median Sale Price:  

$454,950 (the exact middle sale price of every residential property sold last month)

Waterfront Home Sales: 

20 waterfront home sold year to date (versus 15 last year, same time period)

North Okanagan overall statistics:

Total Units that were newly LISTED (and active on the market) during each of the past 3 months:

Sep:    302

Oct:    259

Nov:   218

Total Units SOLD (all property types including raw land and commercial) during each of the past 3 months:

Sep:    167

Oct:     186

Nov:    147

 

Wrap Up:

Sellers:  For the 8th month in a row, sales have continued to decline. This month by 6.37%, a trend that supports the idea that market is in fact changing.  The proof is in the numbers.  If your home is currently listed, and you haven’t received any offers, or your showings have declined, this could be a sign that your home is overpriced for this market. Properties that are priced above the current market value will likely sit until the next cycle, losing value and likely getting lost in the shuffle of abundant homes on the market. However, all is not lost! This is the perfect opportunity to have a discussion with your listing agent, and if necessary take recommendations on how to remedy.

Inventory of homes on the market has also now increased to 1312 versus 1178 last year.  This gap is about the same as last month, however the number of new listings has decreased by 8.02% since October. This could simply be a seasonal change, or perhaps an indication that this change in the market is causing sellers to hold off on listing until a better time of year or until the market swings back in their favor.

Buyers:  As stated above, the number of new homes on the market has decreased slightly since October, but not enough to affect you as buyers. This continues to be a market in your favor, with an abundance of inventory and many sellers desperate to sell.

However…. (and isn’t there always a “however”?) interest rates are now slowly, but surely, on the rise.  Waiting to see if the price of your dream house may reduce may not be the right play, if interest rates increase in the meantime.  By paying the increase in the interest rates could very well mean that in the long run you end up ultimately paying more for your home.  A small increase in rates equals a large increase in the amount spent over the life of your mortgage.  That is an important analysis to make before making the decision to fence sit.

Although the Government has intervened numerous times in an attempt to slow down the real estate prices skyrocketing in the major centres, we aren’t expecting any immediate drastic price drops in our local market.  We are still experiencing a lot of in-migration to our fair city, which is helping our local market while others considerably decline.

If you would like to get access to MLS listings 24/7 on your own time, click here to get brand new listings in your inbox every morning!

Please feel free to Contact Us Anytime:  Lisa, Gord, Glenn, Alex, Joanne, Greg, Avrill, Christie and Bryan of the Salt Fowler Team, RE/MAX Vernon – specializing in North Okanagan and Vernon BC Real Estate.

Speculation Tax Update

MEDIA RELEASE

For Immediate Release

Yes to More Affordable Housing, No to So-Called Speculation Tax

KELOWNA, B.C. – October 17, 2018. While the BC government is to be admired for attempting to tackle housing affordability, the approach taken via tabling a so-called speculation and vacancy tax neither addresses the affordability problem nor targets actual housing market speculators.

Taking aim at claims made by the NDP government about the benefits of the tax, tabled Bill 45 on Tuesday, Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) President Marv Beer comments “I’ve not met anyone who disagrees that we need more affordable housing, but suggesting that this tax, as proposed, would somehow improve the situation is misleading to say the least.”

The tax, should it come into being, targets homes worth more than $400,000 so even if these homes were rented or sold to avoid the tax the housing supply created would not be what is generally considered affordable.

Cautioning again about the potential harm that could come from introducing yet another tax on homeowners on which no economic impact studies have been conducted, Beer notes that the provincial government already has a homeowner tax in place that it could use to further housing affordability. It’s called the Property Transfer Tax and while only homeowners pay it, proceeds currently go into general revenue to benefit everyone. “If the government really wanted to make homes more affordable, it could exempt buyers of lower-cost homes from having to pay the Land Transfer Tax.”

Beer contends that the proposed tax doesn’t target the speculator, defined as someone who purchases and ‘flips’ properties within a relatively short time-frame for profit.

“Speculators, because they don’t hold a property for long, would be minimally affected by this tax. Instead, it would be the long-time home owner who would pay, year over year, for choosing to spend time and money in BC,” says Beer, adding “Ironically, it’s possible that the tax would encourage speculators to set their sights on homes under $400,000, competing with legitimate buyers for lower cost homes. If the government really wanted to go after speculators, it could apply a levy to homes sold within a short time of being purchased.”

Beer notes the government’s claim that the legislation is aimed at foreigners and those from other provinces who don’t pay income taxes here. In fact, the minister responsible for this tax revealed in legislature that almost two-thirds of those who would pay the tax would be British Columbians, about 20,000 of 32,000 homes targeted.

“The good news is that the government has included a number of exemptions from the tax. The bad news is that the myriad of exemptions would create a costly administrative nightmare and still, housing affordability would not be enhanced nor speculators deterred. While measures to address both problems may be needed, this tax, as it is currently proposed, is not the answer.”

For more information, please contact OMREB at media@omreb.com.

MEDIA RELEASE

OMREB is a member-governed not-for-profit association representing almost 1300 REALTORS® and 89 real estate offices within the southern interior region of British Columbia (Peachland to Revelstoke). The Board is dedicated to providing leadership and support to its members in their pursuit of professional excellence.

Vernon Real Estate Market Update for March 2018

This North Okanagan Real Estate Update covers the areas of:  Vernon, Coldstream, Falkland, Armstrong, Enderby and Lumby.

Updated Stats for Residential Homes in the North Okanagan:

Sell/Inventory Ratio:   

24.48%  (this is how much of what is currently on the market sold last month)

Days to Sell:  

53 (how many days on average it is taking to sell a home) – WAY down from last month.

Avg. Sale Price:  

$478,874 (averages can be skewed by a few really high, or really low $$ sales)

Median Sale Price:  

$442,500 (the exact middle sale price of every residential property sold last month)

Waterfront Home Sales: 

3 waterfront home sold year to date (compared to 1 last year in Jan-Mar 2017)

North Okanagan overall statistics:

Total Units that were newly LISTED (and active on the market) during each of the past 3 months:

Jan:          210

Feb:        217

Mar:       380

Total Units SOLD (all property types including raw land and commercial) during each of the past 3 months:

Jan:       111

Feb:      131

Mar:     178

Wrap Up:

Sellers:  There was a very slight increase in units for sale in March over 2017, a bit over 3%.  Not too much different year over year. Sales on the other hand were down nearly 21% year over year.  Why? Is the sky falling? We doubt it. We are still seeing many multiple offers and quick sales. Buyers however are scrambling to compete over properties in the most popular price ranges, and new product is largely being listed in the outlying price ranges where there is still a fair bit of competition. Total inventory right now is 1135 units this year, versus 1326 last year.  That extra few hundred units makes a huge difference.

In March we saw the BC Government reduce the speculation tax numbers slightly, which although a step in the right direction, is not being accepted very well. What this means now is that anyone who does not pay taxes in British Columbia (i.e. anyone from another Province, let alone another country) will pay an additional .5% of assessed value on their property taxes in 2018 and an additional 1% in 2019 and beyond.  We continue to encourage as many people to fight this speculation tax and join the movement of those who believe that more affordable housing in the Province should not come as a directly result of piling on more and more taxes.  The feedback we are currently receiving from those in our neighbouring province is extremely negative, and will ultimately affect the entire Okanagan real estate market, not only the immediately affected areas of Kelowna and West Kelowna.

Sign the Petition to Stop the BC Speculation Tax Here

Write your MLA here in just a few clicks, to fight the BC Speculation Tax

Buyers:  A few more houses entered the market in March for a total inventory of 1135 units versus a few over 1000 last month. Homes in the popular and hard to find price ranges are selling very quickly and the market is in a bit of a frenzy. The best advice we can give, once again, is if you see the perfect home – do not delay. Ensure you have all your ducks in a row in advance – your downpayment, your financing, and your ultimate buying plan.  Sitting down with one our buyer specialists will save you time and money in your buying process as we will ensure your are prepared and ready to strategically enter this market. Ensuring you are an educated buyer is your best opportunity to find the best home at the best price.   Call us today to get on our client list to be informed of those hot new listings the fastest!  Beat other buyers to those new listings before other Realtors even hear about them.  The best defence is a great offence!

We can help get you to the newest listings first, often before other Realtors or the public hear about them with our unique Buyer Profile System – sign up to View Thousands of Homes right here!

Please feel free to Contact Us Anytime:  Lisa, Gord, Glenn, Alex, Joanne, Greg, Avrill and Christie of the Salt Fowler Team, RE/MAX Vernon – specializing in North Okanagan and Vernon BC Real Estate.

Steps to DIY Home Renovation and Resale Success

In the process of home resale, nothing beats the rise of its value as a result of your hard work. Here’s how to achieve that oh-so-rewarding feeling:

Establish goal for resale price

Listing price sets the tone for the entire selling process. Set too high a price, and you risk repelling certain buyers who either won’t tour houses out of their price range or who may never view your listing when searching online with lower price points. Additionally, over-inflated pricing will compare your home unfavorably with others similarly priced. However, while setting too low a price may move the selling process along more quickly, you will forego financial opportunity.

When establishing a goal for your home’s resale listing price, first hire an appraiser to professionally estimate its value. Next, research the local housing market, comparing your home with others currently listed or recently sold. Examine homes similar to yours in quality and location, as well as those a step ahead in updating systems and features. This information will encourage you not to settle for the prices of comparable homes, as a little DIY home renovation can take you a long way, but to also set a reasonable goal that guarantees a return on your investment (ROI). Your resale price goal should land somewhere between the professional estimate, the prices of homes similar and those ahead.

Make a plan

As you move into the home renovation phase of the selling process, you’ll need to decide what to improve or leave ‘as is.’ It’s a numbers game, so consider your renovation budget vs. potential ROI; appropriate spending and placement for high-end finishes; and the most versatile investments able to appeal to the widest range of potential buyers.

For the best ROI, improve the quality of features in your home. For example, projects that historically improve home value include kitchen and bath updates, replacement of exterior siding, fresh interior paint and landscaping upgrades.

DIY Home Renovation

According to Zillow Talk, the following DIY home reno projects yield the best ROI:

Full-gut kitchen remodels average 75 percent return rates. However, if such an improvement threatens to either drastically outdo comparable homes in your area or to drastically slice your budget, perform these smaller kitchen renovations for similar ROI:

  • Incorporate subway tile into the backsplash.
  • Upgrade appliances. Don’t be afraid to purchase lightly used appliances from either consignment sections of certain stores or estate sales. Lightly used appliances are a couple of years old and cost you less than one-fifth the price of new appliances.
  • Install a farmhouse sink.

Full master bathroom remodels also perform strongly, returning an average of 87 percent. Again, if going all in wouldn’t be wise, make these changes:

  • Add shaker cabinets.
  • Integrate granite or quartz countertops.
  • Upgrade to a frameless shower.

Most importantly, heavily consider the proper functioning of staple home systems and components, such as the air conditioning, water heater, foundation and roof. While the other aforementioned items may require the help of a professional, certain roof repairs can be handled on your own.

For example, small holes in a flat roof, under dry conditions, can be patched with a specially made primer and patching system, available at most local hardware stores. Other materials required include a brush, roller and scissors that can usually be found around the house. In three simple steps that include applying primer, covering the hole and smoothing the seal, you can patch your flat roof.

Careful goal setting, planning and DIY home renovating will help you to lure the best resale value for your home.

Photo Credit: Pixabay

Article provided by guest blogger Seth Murphy