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Condos vs. Houses: Which is Right for You?

When you’re a first-time home buyer, choosing the perfect property can seem like a daunting task. With so many options, how do you know what’s right for you? Should you buy the first property that fits your needs or should you shop around for awhile to see if your dream home comes on the market?One of the first decisions to make the home buying process easier is what type of property you want to live in. Do you prefer the convenience of a condo? Or the privacy of a house? Here are some major differences between condos and houses to help you decide.
MaintenanceWhen you own a house, you’re responsible for all the maintenance. From fixing the plumbing to shoveling the driveway, you either have to tackle tasks on your own or hire an expert to help. On the other hand, condos usually employ a maintenance team to take care of the entire building. You’ll pay a few hundred dollars each month in condo fees (in addition to your mortgage) to make your life a little easier.
StyleWhen you buy a stand…

Marketing to Millennials

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Stereotypes suggest that millennials are cheap, fickle and only make purchases online. But if your goal is to market to millennials, you’re better off not buying into these myths.It’s true that millennials – defined as those born between 1981 and 1996 – are highly educated and tech savvy, as they’ve grown up along with the advent of computers at home and in the workplace, as well as the Internet.What’s also true is that a core group of millennials, between ages 18 and 34, are starting to think about a place to live. Those who can afford it will be looking at their first home, likely investing in real estate for the first time.Surveys suggest that the majority of millennials will use a real estate agent when shopping for a home, but there are also more likely to begin their search online, which makes sense for a tech-savvy generation. Keep in mind that millennials are more likely to respond to online marketing and communications efforts as opposed to newspaper ads, flyers and postcards…

Tips on Fixer-Upper Homes

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Buying a new home can be stressful, even more so when you opt for a fixer-upper. But it’s something many potential homebuyers are considering, especially in a hot housing market like Toronto, where fixer-uppers can be much cheaper than an average home.Although it’s difficult to estimate the number of fixer-uppers in a big city, experts agree there is value to be found out there. That’s partly because in today’s busy society, many people simply don’t have the time or the inclination to take on a fixer-upper project. That means there’s less demand for fixer-uppers and therefore better prices.If you do take the plunge, here are some tips for turning that fixer-upper into a dream home.Plan AheadMake sure you focus on your end goal. If the idea is to flip the property, concentrate on areas that are going to add the most value. For instance, an updated kitchen will add more value than air conditioning. Determine the scope of the project. How much can you do on your own and when will you req…

Advice for New Real Estate Agents: The Secrets to a Long Career

Congrats! You’ve passed your real estate exam, obtained a license and started your own business. It’s the first feat of many to becoming a successful real estate professional. But what exactly is the secret to longevity in an already over-saturated field? While many new real estate agents fail in their first year or two, you do not have to be one of them. It all comes down to hard work and the way you market yourself. Afterall, buyers want an agent who is reliable, professional and has expert knowledge of the market. Don’t assume that because you’ve told all of your family and friends about your new career you’ll start receiving an outpouring of business referrals from them. You don’t have to play the role of the “pushy salesperson” either. There are ways to present yourself and handle your business that will separate you from all of that. For example, the ability to write compelling descriptions about listings and excellent photography skills go much farther than selling skills. Peo…