Christine Lelond Your Home Expert

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If you’re paying a lot of money for a new washing machine, wouldn’t it be nice to know how long you should expect it to last? There is, of course, no exact formula for figuring that out. Every brand and unit is different. There are however, some broad estimates.

 

According to an article in Consumer Reports, a washer and dryer will hum along just fine for about 10 years, with a likelihood of needing a repair during the last two to three. Leading brands offer a parts and labour guarantee for at least a year. So, if something goes wrong during that period, be sure to contact the manufacturer right away.

 

The National Association of Home Builders released a report a few years ago on the longevity of kitchen appliances. They found that refrigerators can last up to 13 years under normal use. Dishwashers and ovens will start to show their age after nine years. The worst record is for trash compactors, with a life expectancy of only six years before repairs or replacement is required.

 

Microwave ovens last an average of nine years. However, the door seal should be checked often. Otherwise, the unit will quickly lose efficiency. (You’ll notice this when your food doesn’t heat up as quickly and evenly.)

 

All experts agree that the best way to keep home appliances functioning properly is to follow manufacturer’s instructions for use and maintenance. If you’ve lost your user’s manual, you can download a new one (which may contain important updates) from the manufacturer’s website.

 

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When you’re preparing your home for sale, it’s not unusual to need to fix up a few things around the property. After all, you want your home to look its best to buyers, so that you get good offers, quickly.

 

What do you need to fix? Here are three categories that will help you create and prioritize your list.

 

1. Anything that squeaks or creaks. Is there something in your home that makes a noise it shouldn’t be making? Perhaps it’s a rattling closet door or a creaking floor board? You may be so used to it you no longer notice the sound. But buyers will. Be sure to get those items fixed.

 

2. Anything that’s unsightly. You don’t have to make your home look perfect. However, things that are unsightly will likely get buyers’ attention. You want them to focus on the terrific features of your property, not the scuff on the wall.

 

Take a walk through your property, including the yard. Pretend you’re the buyer. Do you notice anything that doesn’t look good? If so, tidy it up, fix it up or replace it.

 

3. Anything that’s broken. If there’s anything that needs repair — an outside tap that’s not working, or a sliding door that regularly careens off its runner — call the contractor or fix it yourself.

 

Getting these items fixed will go a long way toward making your home appealing to buyers.

 

Want more tips on preparing your home for sale? Call today.

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Year to date, the Saskatoon home market shows positive signs in a few of the key indicators. “There are a few key statistics that we watch ever month to get a sense of where our market is at and where it may be headed” according to Jason Yochim, CEO of the Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS® .“We keep a close eye on the number of transactions, the inventory levels and the change in pricing." he adds. 

Year to date home sales are up 4% over 2016 with 558 unit sales. This is comparable to the number of home sales in 2015. The total dollar volume for those sales was just over $186 million, representing a 2% increase over last year. At the end of February, the inventory level for available residential property on the MLS® system in Saskatoon was 1,659 units, 5.4% lower than last year. The lower inventory levels are largely due to a significant drop in the number of new listings added to the MLS® system. So far this year there have been 1,337 new listings in the system compared to 1,410 last year. When comparing new listings for the last month, there were 15.7% fewer properties added to the market this past February than last February.

A decline in new listings coupled with an increase in sales resulted in a sales-to-listing ratio of 37.4%in February. This is a significant increase from last February where this ratio was 30.9%. A market with a sales-to-listing ratio below 40% is considered to be a solid buyers market. This indicates a positive move towards a more balanced market. “Although we are seeing these positive indicators quite early on, these statistics indicate a shift in the marketplace in a positive direction,” comments Yochim. 

Home prices remain relatively unchanged year to date with the average price down a mere 0.7% to just under $340,000. The median price of $320,000 represents a slight drop of 1.6% year over year. The Home Price Index (HPI) is considered to be the most accurate measure of home values and where the market prices are trending. The HPI composite price is an aggregate of various residential home types in a particular market and is a measurement of change in value over time. A composite value was established with a base year and has been indexed on a monthly basis. The composite value in February was $297,900 representing a 1.2% decrease from a year ago. This value had been on a downward trend since mid-2016 which is not surprising considering elevated inventory levels through the year and a buyers market.

The average number of days for a home to sell in Saskatoon was 54 days. This is only slightly longer than in 2016 with an average of 52 days. Because today's real estate buyers are well educated on the market, homes are selling at 97% of their asking price which is consistent with last year.  -Source: February 2017 SRAR Media Release 

Looking for sound pricing, marketing and timing advice?  As REALTOR® and Nationally Accredited Buyer Representative - ABR®, Seller Representative Specialist - SRS® and Real Estate Negotiation Expert - RENE, I can provide you with this advice. Call today.  
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