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Protecting your Home Gadgets from Hacking

Imagine your coffee maker switching on by itself, staying on for hours, overheating and becoming a fire hazard. That’s not science fiction. As more and more appliances incorporate Wi-Fi, the opportunities for hackers to play havoc with your home gadgets increase.

How do you prevent that from happening? Here are some safety tips:

If your gadget uses a password to access the settings, change that password frequently. Ideally, change it once every 3 months.

Some gadgets, such as alarm systems, come with their own connection to the internet. Learn how to turn that connection off if it becomes necessary to do so.

Don’t leave an internet-connected appliance or other gadget on constantly unless it’s required. For example, you don’t need your home speaker system connected to your digital music providers all the time.

Baby monitors with video are a common target for hackers. Use a password unique to that device and change it often. Never leave the monitor on when not in use.

Never share passwords with anyone unless it is absolutely necessary. Most home Wi-Fi systems have a “guest” feature with a separate password and limited access. Use it.

In this age of internet connectivity — from coffee makers to stereos and even washing machines — it’s smart to play it safe. Know what’s connected and protect yourself.

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ABR® Smooth as “#fate” butter!!!

Congratulations to my newest VIPs’ Karen & Rhett on your ABR® new home purchase!!!

I have to say that this home purchase blog will not be filled with a crazy challenge overcome story, nor mentions of bumps, struggles, frustration, stress or heartache.  This blog is about what every Realtor® wants and strives to achieve for their buyer clients; THE PERFECT HOUSE DROPPING ON THE MARKET JUST WHEN YOU WANT IT AND A SMOOTH PURCHASE OF IT.  (More please!!!)

Not only was this quality cared for home a rare find that fit your specific criteria wants perfectly, my strategy advice for negotiations #RENE resulted in great percentage savings with Bonuses; Results uncommon in this fast paced/highly competitive/inventory shortage market.  Honestly, the only challenge I can think of for you in this entire purchase was that it all happened so fast. #FATE

Thank you so much for choosing me as your ABR® Realtor®, following my advice and trusting my guidance throughout each step of the process to ensure your success.  As a following loyal customer of mine for years plus knowing each other since high school, it truly was an honor and a great privilege assisting you in your new home purchase when the time was finally right for you; on Halloween night none the less!

Wishing you an abundance of happiness and a multitude of joyful times in your beautiful new home.  As your personal Realtor®, know I will always be here to help you, your friends and family whenever needed for years to come.


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FIVE CONSECUTIVE MONTHS OF ABOVE-AVERAGE SALES DESPITE INVENTORY WOES

There were 1,006 sales reported across the province in November, a 10 per cent year-over-year increase, marking the fifth consecutive month of year-over-year sales increases in Saskatchewan. Much of the monthly sales gains were driven by rising activity in the Regina and Saskatoon Regions. As seen in previous months, year-to-date sales remain well above long-term, 10-year trends, as the province continues to report strong sales.

A slight year-over-year increase in new listings was not enough to offset above-average November sales, causing further retractions in inventory levels, specifically in homes priced below $400,000. Inventory levels decreased by over 16 per cent on a year-over-year basis and remain over 30 per cent below long-term, 10-year averages.

“Saskatchewan’s housing market continues to benefit from a strong economy, record employment and population growth,” said Association CEO, Chris Guérette. “These factors, when paired with our relative affordability, continue to support above-average monthly sales and stable demand in home ownership.”

The months of supply rose above five months in November, slightly higher than levels reported earlier this year, but still over 40 per cent below the 10-year average. Despite a slight gain in the months of supply compared to October, nearly all of the growth was in higher-priced products, as the more affordable segment of the market continues to face significant inventory challenges.

In line with typical seasonal factors, Saskatchewan reported a slight decrease in the benchmark price of $324,400 in November, down from $327,300 in October and up nearly 2 per cent from November 2022.

“Our market continues to outperform many regions across the country, as we once again report strong sales levels and prices that are holding relatively steady,” said Guérette. “Where we are similar to other markets, however, is that we are experiencing persistent inventory challenges, specifically in the more affordable segment of our housing continuum.”

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Regional Highlights
Despite monthly fluctuations, year-to-date sales activity eased across all regions in the province in November, with the steepest decline occurring in the Swift Current-Moose Jaw Region. While year-to-date sales have decreased, the Regina-Moose Mountain, Saskatoon-Biggar, Swift Current-Moose Jaw, and Yorkton-Melville Regions are reporting sales well above long-term, 10-year trends.

The Saskatoon-Biggar Region continues to experience the tightest conditions across the province, with just over 3.5 months of supply reported in November.

Price Trends
Benchmark prices varied across the province in November, as the communities of Estevan, Humboldt, Melville, Moose Jaw, Prince Albert, Saskatoon, Weyburn, and Yorkton reported year-over-year price gains. Meanwhile, Meadow Lake, Melfort, North Battleford, Regina, and Swift Current reported year-over-year price declines.

City of Regina

The City of Regina reported 240 sales in November, up nearly 16 per cent year-over-year and 14 per cent above long-term, 10-year trends.

Strong sales and a decline in new listings failed to offer any supply relief in November, as inventory levels were down 21 per cent on a year-over-year basis and remain over 30 per cent below long-term, 10-year trends.

With only 3.5 months of supply, Regina continues to experience significant supply challenges in the more affordable segment of the market. Despite strong sales and relatively tight market conditions, the Queen City reported a benchmark price of $305,000 in November, down from $308,500 in October and nearly 3 per cent below November 2022.

City of Saskatoon

The City of Saskatoon reported 314 sales in November, a year-over-year increase of 18 per cent and nearly 10 per cent above the 10-year average.

Despite a slight year-over-year gain in new listings, strong November sales prevented significant supply growth, as inventory levels were nearly 50 per cent below long-term trends.

Tight market conditions continue to support price growth, as the City of Saskatoon reported a benchmark price of $380,000 in November, down from $382,700 in October but over 5 per cent higher than November 2022.

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Start the Home Selling Process this Month

What’s that old saying? The early bird gets the worm! In this case, by starting the process this month, you’ll be in excellent shape when you’re ready to list in the spring.

Here are just a few examples of what you can do in December to get the process started:

• Walk your property and note any maintenance issues that need attention.

• Decide which items to stow or sell to declutter your home.

• Determine what improvements you’ll need to make in order for your home to look great to buyers.

• Find out approximately how much your property will likely sell for in the spring market.

• Clarify the kind of new home you’d like to move into, including ideal neighbourhoods.

• Look into your financing options, so you’ll know the price range you can afford.

• Connect with any professionals you may need, such as contractors, a mover, and a real estate lawyer.

• Take advantage of any December shopping deals for products you may need, such as home improvement project materials, packing supplies, etc.

As you can see, the more prepared you are this month, the more stress-free and successful the home selling process will be in the spring.
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