Showing posts from November, 2015

Is buying a home in the winter a good idea?


(NC) Consider this: It's a cold winter day and you've just sat down with a mortgage professional to figure out how much house you can afford. You've determined that your finances are in order and you're ready to start looking for a home. You've heard that spring is the best season for buying and selling real estate. Does that mean you'll need to put your search on hold until the tulips start to bloom? “If you've worked out what you can afford and you're ready for the home buying process, then shopping for real estate can happen at any time of year,” says Pat Verge, president of the Ontario Real Estate Association. “While spring and fall are busier times for real estate sales, a serious home buyer should be looking out for potential homes as long as they're ready to make a purchase. It can sometimes take many months to find the right property.” If you are planning to shop for real estate during the winter, these are a few t…

Don't Tax My Dream

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From the editor: What I learned about kitchen renovations

From the editor: What I learned about kitchen renovationsPublished Jessica Vitullo - October 30, 2015 I adore my kitchen (ok, ok, my parent’s kitchen). But I’m planning on moving out soon and plan to love my very own kitchen. For me, the kitchen is the most cozy room in the house. It’s where I spend quality time with loved ones, indulging in comfort meals and perusing on my laptop. That’s why I’ll take this advice into consideration before a kitchen expert designs it.
All about kitchensI’m probably not the only person that loves being in the kitchen. But maybe for you, it’s not about loving the space so much as spending so much time in it. For the month of October, I wanted to learn everything about kitchens – what kitchen styles are in, how much money homeowners should dedicate to a kitchen renovation in the first place, and why you undergo a kitchen renovation in the first place. Here’s an overview of what I learned and what you need to know before you consult our extensive directory o…

Top 5 renovation tips to create more space

(NC) As real estate prices continue to climb, the cost to trade up an existing home for a larger one has increased substantially. As a result, more and more Canadians are choosing to renovate their homes, rather than relocating. In fact, it was recently revealed that renovation spending in Canada reached a record $68 billion last year, outpacing spending on new home construction. While the hunt for more square footage can be challenging, homeowners shouldn't feel like a costly second story or complete addition are the only options. Here are five great ways to create or optimize space in your existing home: 1. Finish the basement. This one renovation holds limitless potential and can increase the resale value or income potential of your home. Think about the possibilities: a home theatre, office, spare bedroom, basement apartment or recreation room. The key to doing it successfully is to focus on what's behind the walls, especially since moisture is a …

Teach kids responsibility with regular household chores

(NC) Getting kids to help out around the house is often a struggle. Yet, encouraging your children to do household chores will benefit them in multiple ways, from teaching responsibility, organization and routine, to instilling a sense of accomplishment, boosting self-esteem and affirming that they play a valuable role within the family unit. It can improve their judgement, independence and help them to sympathize with others. Here are the top ways to get your kids on board with daily chores: Make it fun. Turn it into a game where they can earn points or privileges. You could also time them to see if they can beat their last record. This works really well when you have more than one child because you can turn chore time into a fun competition. Talk about chores in a positive way. Don't associate them with punishments or complain about chores and household tasks of your own. Remember, you set the example. Don't use a dictating tone. When asking your kids to do chores, don't ask…