Preparing for a power outage

Some people can live in their homes for years without ever experiencing a power outage. In fact, even in areas prone to serious storms or snowfalls, power loss doesn’t happen that often. No wonder so many homeowners are caught unprepared when it does.

To make sure you’re not caught unprepared, follow these tips: 

  • Replace batteries in unused flashlights every six months.
  • Keep candles and matches in a handy place. Monitor them closely when lit and always blow them out before going to sleep.
  • For computers and phones, consider purchasing a power backup. (Some models provide up to 8 hours of power for two or three devices.)
  • Know the address of your local fire station and nearest community centre. These are the most common places to find help during a power outage. 

When the power does go out, make sure the stove is turned off. You don’t want an unattended burner or gas leak when the power finally comes back on.

Want more helpful tips or information on the real estate market? Contact me!

http://www.stevesicard.ca

steve@stevesicard.ca

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Always Putting Your Needs First!

How to make sure buyers notice the best features of your home

Buyers are more likely to make an offer on your home if they see a lot of things they love about it. So what do buyers love to see?

 One of the main things they like to see is a lot of space. Of course, you can’t change the size of your rooms, but there is a lot you can do to make small spaces in your home seem more spacious.

 Buyers also love to see a clean and uncluttered home. Think of how inviting a hotel room looks at first glance, with everything neat and organized. Of course, your home isn’t a hotel, but the more neat and attractive you can make each room, the better.

 One thing buyers don’t love to see is potential maintenance issues. So as much as possible, get things fixed or updated.

 In fact, the more “finished” and “move in ready” your home looks, the more likely a buyer is to make an offer.

 Don’t forget the surrounding neighbourhood either. A buyer may not take the time to explore the area, so be sure to make a list of the most appealing features. You might want to take a picture of the brand new playground just down the street or print off a local map showing nearby shopping, theatre and other points of interest.

 It’s not about creating a false impression. Rather, it’s about making your home look its best and drawing attention to its most enticing features.

 Want more home selling tips? Call today; 613-853-5807 or write; steve@stevesicard.ca

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http://www.stevesicard.ca  or  http://www.stevesicard.com

Always Putting Your Needs First!

Childproofing tips for your home

If you have young children, or expect a visit from friends or relatives with little ones in tow, it pays to ensure your home is free of hazards. The last thing you want is an injury that could have easily been prevented.

Here are some basic childproofing tips.

• Remove everything that is toxic, hot or sharp, from within reach of a child. (For example, the leaves of some types of house plants are toxic.)

• If possible, keep children out of the kitchen while cooking.

• Install plug-in covers in electrical outlets. (These are inexpensive and can be purchased at any hardware store.)

• Block or gate off areas where kids may fall.

• Remove “pulling down” hazards, such as a heavy plant that a child can pull off a table.

• Make sure there are screens on all open windows.

Finally, watch your pets. Even the most gentle dog or cat can act unpredictably around children – especially if they’re not used to them.

Contact me for help buying or selling your home!

steve@stevesicard.ca

613-853-5807

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The importance of reading and understanding an offer

When you make or receive an offer to buy a property, it’s important that you read and understand every clause. It is especially important to understand any conditions or any changes that are made to the standard offer.

 An offer may contain several types of conditions. The most common are “conditional upon arranging financing” and “conditional upon passing a professional home inspection.” However, there may be other conditions as well.

 You should be aware of – and fully understand – all of them.

 In addition, the wording of an offer may change during the back and forth negotiations that often happen. Aside from changes to the price, other clauses may be added, removed or reworded as well.

 A good agent will always ask you to initial changes. This is done primarily to ensure you know and approve of what you’re signing.

 A recent newspaper article tells the story of a buyer-seller legal dispute that resulted in a six-figure judgement against the seller. This was due, in part, to a lack of understanding of one of the clauses in the agreement.

 You don’t want that to happen to you. Take the time to carefully review and understand an offer.

 Want to make sure everything goes smoothly with your next move? Call today. 613-853-5807

Be Sure to Plan for the “Pet Issue”

If you have pets, you probably adore them. They’re part of the family! But when you’re preparing your home for sale, you need to think about how you’re going to deal with the “pet issue”.

 

Some potential buyers who view your property may love pets as much as you do. However, others may be turned off by the tell-tale signs of pet ownership – such as kitty litter, dander, and smells.

 

So be sure to make a plan for how you’re going to deal with your pets.

 

It’s a good idea to keep pets out of the house during viewings. Even if your dog or cat is friendly, some buyers will be uncomfortable around them. So, you’ll need to decide where your pets will go when buyers view your property. Consider a local kennel or “pet day camp”.

 

“Can’t I just take my dog out for a walk?” you might be asking. You could,; however, you may not always be available to do that during a viewing. So have alternate plans available.

 

You should also consider how you will deal with pet dander and everyday pet odours. You’re probably used to them. Unfortunately, some buyers will be turned off or even be allergic. So, in addition to cleaning your home before a viewing — especially in those areas where pets spend time like a favourite cushion or scratching post – consider using specialty air sprays available on the market that will neutralize pet odours.

 

Finally, it’s a good idea to advise buyers that they’re viewing a home with pets. That way, they’ll be more forgiving if they catch a whiff of cat dander.

 

Need more tips on preparing your home for sale? Call today. 613-853-5807

http://www.stevesicard.ca

 

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