Drew & Patti Steeves Team

HomeLife Benchmark Titus Realty

Cell (604) 230-5700

Office (604) 575-5262

Email: drew@drewsteeves.com

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At this time of year it's good to make sure you're prepared in case you experience a power outage or are stranded due to bad weather. While living here in the Lower Mainland we tend not to see the harsh conditions that other parts of the province or country do, it's good to be prepared just in case. This is especially true if you drive or travel during the Winter months to regions that do experience harsher conditions. 

 

Here are some tips to help you get prepared & be safe during the Winter:

 

  • GET A GENERATOR- Have one on hand in case of power outages due to Winter weather
  • KNOW HOW YOU’LL USE THE GENERATOR. Make sure you know how to install and run your generator; take it out of the box & read the manual so you know what to do if you need it. You may have to have an electrician install a transfer switch and hardwire it to your furnace to generate heat. 
  • BE SURE TO HAVE A FULL GAS CAN. This is good to have on hand in case of emergencies, especially if you live somehwere with harsh Winter conditions that makes driving a challenge.
  • MORE GAS ADVICE: MAKE SURE YOUR CAR’S TANK IS FULL. This is important for several reasons: if you lose power, you’ll need your car to charge your phone. If you need to drive outside your region in an emergency or to find shelter, mostly likely local gas stations will be closed/ out of gas/ have long lines.
  • GET A CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTOR.  Very important for the cold season when you're heating your home nad/ or if you need to use a generator. Carbon monoxide is a toxic, odorless gas, so a detector is necessary to determine if it is present. 
  • MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A STOCKED FIRST AID KIT. This important for both the home and to keep in vehicles. Make sure you have necessary items in case of injury/ emergency.
  • KEEP BOTTLES OF WATER ON HAND. This is important for basic emergancy preparedness. Make sure to keep some at home and in your vehicle. 

  • Do you travel during the holidays or do you like to stay close to home? We love to hear what othes do at this time of year!
Image Source: Redhead Can Decorate


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During the Fall and Winter months we see our utility bills increase as we use more resources to heat our homes and stay cozy. However, without even knowing it, you can waste money by overlooking a few simple areas of your home. Here are a few tips to help you save on your energy bills this season.

 

1. Fix leaky faucets

If you live somewhere where you pay for your water consumption separately, you can be washing money down the drain- literally- with something as simple as a leaky faucet. To check, make sure your faucet is completely closed; if  drips of water continue to come out, check the washer or valve cartridges (in washerless models) and replace them if they are damaged or worn. 

 

2. Check your toilets

The same as above applies. Don't flush money away by having your toilet leaking water. To check, simply add some coloured bowl cleaner into the tank and wait several hours to see if it leaks into the bowl without flushing. If a leak is present, consider replacing the stopper in the bottom of the tank. 

 

3. Turn down your hot water tank

You might think you'll notice a difference in water temperature, but chances are you'll only notice a lower utility bill. You don't need to have your tank set to the highest heat to get the water to a satisfactory temperature. It can be surprising to see how much it's costing you to simply maintain the water at a certain temperature.

 

4. Look for drafts around doors & windows

You're spending hard- earned money to heat your home, and you don't want the warm air escaping through cracks around doors and/ or windows. If you notice a draft, chalking around frames can solve the problem. In some cases you may need to repair or replace windows or doors that are cracked or damaged.

 

Having an energy- efficient home not only saves you money, it's also a selling feature when you go to sell. Even at this time of year there is still plenty of competition in the market, usually with motivated sellers. Set your home apart and pay attention to details. For more info about selling at this time of year and to book an appointment, contact us today.


Image Source: Remodelaholic

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The leaves are changing colour, the air is getting a crisp edge, and soon Fall will transition into Winter. Just because the warmer months are behind us doesn't mean that listing your home at this time of year isn't without it's benefits. We found this great article from Morning Call that outlines the benefits to selling your home in the Fall & Winter. Read on to learn more.




Many home sellers choose to sit on the sidelines during the colder autumn and winter months and get in the game come springtime, when they expect greater interest from buyers. But with the right preparations, smart sellers can list now and sell quicker than expected, without hibernating through the winter, the experts say.

 
Many people consider fall and winter as the off season for real estate, with fewer shoppers hunting for homes and fewer listings from which to choose. That shouldn't necessarily dissuade people from listing their homes during the cold season, though, says Bruce Taylor, president of ERA Key Realty Services in Whitinsville, Mass.
 
The pool of prospective purchasers may be smaller, shoppers out hunting in fall and winter are usually more motivated and serious, often with a pressing need to close quickly and move in soon due to a job relocation or major life change. "These buyers out in the cold looking at homes are not 'tire kickers.' They want to buy a home and get moved in now," Klebba says.

 

Another advantage to listing now versus later is that there is less competition from other sellers."There are fewer houses on the market in the fall and winter, which may lead to more demand for your house," says Jack Gloriod, owner/agent with The Becky Gloriod Team, Colorado Springs, Colo.



 

Additionally, "Houses tend to show very well when decorated tastefully for the holidays, and buyers enjoy this," Klebba says. "And listing and selling in fall or winter could make it so the timing works out for the seller to take advantage of the coming new spring inventory and increase their odds of finding the perfect next home."


Exert from Off- season selling: Listing your home during the fall or winter brings advantages. Published on The Morning Call.


We're always looking to take on clients, even in the months that people view to be the 'slow season' in real estate. It's usually anything but slow! As realtors, we appreciate your referrals and are happy to work with clients we have developed relationships with, and new ones alike. If you or someone you know is thinking about selling this Fall or Winter, we would love to be the real estate team to help. Contact us to get things started!

- Drew & Team Steeves


Image Sources:

Yahoo Homes

Between Naps on the Porch

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Well it's officiailly Fall!

 

Now that the warmth and sunny days of Summer are behind us, it's time to make sure the outside of our homes are ready to face the elements of the cooler temperatures. It's important to get the exterior of your home ready before the weather gets too cold and wet.


Here's a great list from Decor and the Dog to help keep track of tasks:




And to help you narrow down your to- do list, here's some tips from Right At Home to identify areas to focus on:

 

Clean gutters and drainage spouts.

  Protect yourself first by always wearing gloves—animals or insects can hide in gutters. A gutter scoop is a convenient tool for removing leaves and other debris. Then place the garden hose in the downspout to flush it out.

Inspect your roof.

  Look for signs of deterioration (loose shingles, rotting wood, cracks, etc.). Carefully trim heavy branches that are hanging over your roof. (A falling branch could hurt someone, cause a blackout or damage your roof. If you're using your chimney, flying sparks could possibly ignite overhanging branches.) If the branches are near power lines, call a professional tree-trimming company to do the trimming; they may need to ask your power company to temporarily disconnect your power before they start working.

Check all windows and doors.

  Remove summer screens and install storm windows and doors. Inspect and repair any loose or damaged windows or door frames. Install weather stripping or caulking around windows and doors to reduce drafts too. If you discover signs of deterioration such as moisture on surrounding walls or dry-rot damage, call a certified home inspector or restoration specialist immediately.

Clean your heating system.

  Replace the filters in your furnace. (Swift recommends doing it monthly if you have allergies.) Check for air leakage around the joints. And consider having an air-conditioning and heating specialist check your entire system before winter sets in. If you don't already have one, install a carbon-monoxide detector near all appliances that burn fossil fuel, but be sure you install it in an area where you'll hear the alarm if it's triggered.

Check the smoke detector.

  Some people wait until they reset their clocks during Daylight Savings Time to inspect their smoke detectors, but if you missed it in the spring, don't wait another month—check them now. Press the button to make sure it beeps and replace batteries if necessary. Most smoke detectors signal with an automatic beep when the battery gets low, but it's always good to check on an annual basis. Smoke detectors should be replaced every 10 years; batteries should be replaced every six months.

Secure the cracks.

  From skunks to insects to other critters, your home can fall prey to unwanted invaders. Before they start seeking shelter from the cold, inspect the perimeter of your house for cracks or holes where they could enter and then seal well. Clean and lubricate the garage-door hinges, rollers and tracks to make sure the door closes securely. If you detect evidence of animal activity, such as urine odors, unexplained gnaw marks, feces or footprints, consult an exterminator.


Are you thinking about sellingyour home this Fall? We hope this will help you get ready to list your home. If you have any questions or would like help selling your home, contact us today!


Image Sources:

Home Depot

Decor and the Dog


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