Articles related to buying or selling your home


Staging your home for the holidays

 Tuesday, November 20, 2018     Marion Goard     House and Home Buying and Selling

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The holidays are an exciting time for many and as a home seller you have the double duty of celebrating the season and selling your home at the same time. Check out these great tips and learn how to properly stage your home for showings throughout the holiday season.

Clean it first

Before you bring out the holiday decor be sure to clean your house from top to bottom. Vacuum, dust and reorganize the furniture to maximize the space in each room. After you clean, put away personal items such as family photos, personal trinkets, and other items that will make it hard for the buyer to picture themselves in your home. Once you’re done, you can begin adding some seasonal decor to your space. 

Less is more

Always remember that less is more when staging your home. The more that the buyer is able to visualize their belongings and style in the home, the better. Avoid displaying all of your holiday decorations over every surface and in every corner as it can be extremely overwhelming and take away from the home’s features. Consider picking a seasonal colour palette and using that as your inspiration. Use pillows, vases, blankets and other household items in these colours as your decor. Bring in some winter touches by displaying greenery and pinecones in vases and table tops. This decor won’t overwhelm buyers but still shows off your holiday spirit.

Make your traditions your decorations

Even if you aren’t displaying all of your favourite holiday decor, there are still so many ways to make your home reflect the holiday season while entertaining guests. Play classical or Christmas music throughout the house while guests are over, bake holiday treats for your family and friends to enjoy and keep the house warm by turning up the heat a little higher. These decor-less tips will make your home feel festive and fun.

Think of your curb appeal

Stay away from the oversized lawn ornaments and instead put lights around bushes or on the roof. During day, when potential buyers are coming through the house, the lights won’t be as noticeable but they will still make your home look like a winter wonderland when turned on in the evening. Remember to also have a salted walkway and a driveway clear of snow for safety during showings and open houses. 

With these great staging tips your home will look great to potential buyers and still show off your holiday spirit when entertaining guests!

Need more tips and advice? I'd be happy to help you on your real estate journey! Contact me anytime! Email me at mariongoard@kw.com or call 905-335-8808. 


Top tips for hiring a home inspector

 Monday, October 22, 2018     Marion Goard     House and Home Buying and Selling

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Just because the home you have your eye on looks perfect at a glance, doesn’t mean that there aren’t any issues that need closer inspection. By hiring a home inspector you’ll get peace of mind and a full report on the home rather than being unpleasantly surprised by any costly issues that could occur after closing.

Get Referrals

Ask friends, neighbours and family whom they’ve hired for home inspections – and don’t forget to get recommendations from your own real estate agent. Your agent has likely worked with the same inspector(s) several times and can give them a good review.

Interview the Inspector

You should interview two or three inspectors before deciding on one. Spend some time chatting with the inspector to get to know them, and get a feel for whether or not you’ll want to work with them.

Are they Insured?

While surprisingly not mandatory to have, look for an inspector that has errors and omissions (E&O) insurance. An inspector that carries this insurance is likely to have more on-the-job experience.

Hang out in the Home

An inspector shouldn’t have any issues with the future homeowners – and their agent, too – wanting to be present for the inspection. Tell the inspector that you insist on accompanying them from room to room and have them point out features – and potential issues – as the inspection occurs. Also feel free to ask questions at the same time. After all, it will be your property and the inspector is supposed to work for you!

Remember, a complete home inspection should:

  • Give you the peace of mind with your purchase
  • Reveal repairs and improvements needed before you buy
  • Provide invaluable details about every aspect of your purchased home
  • Reduce the risk of unpleasant “surprises” after closing.

It’s the home inspector’s job to check the safety of the home and focus on the structure, construction, and its mechanical system. They should point out any issues or repairs that should be done so you’re not left emotionally and possibly financially frustrated after buying your dream home.

Contact me anytime to find out how I can help you on your real estate journey! Email me at mariongoard@kw.com or call 905-335-8808.


Preparing your house for new homeowners

 Monday, October 15, 2018     Marion Goard     Buying and Selling

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With the commotion of a move, it’s easy to forget that someone will shortly be moving in to what was once your space. You’ll want to make sure a few things are done in time for the new homeowners.

Squeaky clean

While preparing to move out of your house, keep cleaning supplies handy. You will notice how quickly dust can accumulate when packing. Give the house a good sweep, wipe down surfaces, and clean the windows before you move out to ensure a bright and sparkly space for the new homeowners. 

Curb Appeal

Before packing up the lawn mower, give the yard one last quick cut. A fresh cut lawn is a lovely welcome home for the new owners. If the new owners aren’t moving in right away, trimmed grass will give neighbours a pleasant sight to see! 

Throw away garbage 

Between bags, boxes and bubble wrap, there’s sure to be a lot of garbage laying around after you’ve packed everything up. Grab a garbage bag and toss it away. Double check basements, sheds and garages for unwanted and forgotten items that the new owners wont want to deal with.

Forward the mail

Cancel all of the utilities on your current home and switch them over to your new home. Don’t forget to arrange to have any mail forwarded to your new address. Over the next couple of months make sure to change addresses on any mail subscriptions that you have. If you’re comfortable with it, consider leaving a forwarding address with the new owners in case any deliveries are made when you no longer live there.

A good rule of thumb when moving is to leave the home the way that you’d want it to be if you were moving in. It’s always nice to go above and beyond to make the new homeowners feel right at home.

Contact me anytime to find out how I can help you on your real estate journey! Email me at mariongoard@kw.com or call 905-335-8808.


Five Tips for a Perfect Open House

 Tuesday, September 11, 2018     Marion Goard     House and Home Real Estate Market Buying and Selling Just Listed

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Your home’s exterior needs to make a good first impression. Tidy up landscaping and paint any features that look worn. If it’s in your budget to buy some new items for an even bigger wow factor, consider new garage doors, house numbers, and new light fixtures. Remember to remove all cars from the driveway on the day of the open house.

Keep it clean. Hiring professional cleaners is money well spent, especially if cleaning isn’t your strong suit or you simply don’t have the time. This could include house cleaners, window washers and carpet cleaning services.

Declutter. Make all rooms in the home look as spacious as possible by removing some furniture and knickknacks (pack them away so they’re ready for your new home). A clean, uncluttered space gives buyers a better idea of the home’s features.

Stage the home. Paint in neutral colours and, if possible, replace cabinets and faucets with new hardware. Add in a few small touches such as crisp new towels in the bathrooms, and vases of fresh flowers throughout. No matter the weather on open house day, open up all blinds and curtains to let as much light in as possible. Also remember to hide toothbrushes and toiletries by stowing them under the sink. Remove anything personal. Items such as family photos, certificates and awards should be packed away. This allows home buyers to visualize their own family in the home.

Keep pets at bay. If you’ve got a dog, it may be as easy as taking them out with you on the day of the open house. Other pets such as cats should be confined to less trafficked areas. Remember to put food bowls away until you return home.

With these tips in mind, you’ll be providing a more marketable home that’s ready to show any and all potential buyers.

Contact me anytime to find out how I can help you on your real estate journey! Email me at mariongoard@kw.com or call 905-335-8808.


Finding an agent that fits

 Monday, August 27, 2018     Marion Goard     House and Home Real Estate Market Buying and Selling

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Buying and selling a home is a huge undertaking. You’ll want to work with a real estate agent that meets your goals and expectations and has your best interest in mind without any pressure tactics. There are many things to consider when hiring an agent.


Ask for references. The agent should readily give you a list of past clients. Ask them if they encountered any issues while working with the agent, how well the agent performed and, on a more personal level, ask them if they worked together amicably.


Check their credentials and find out how long they’ve been in business. What brokerage are they with? How long has it been in business? Has the agent received any awards or honours? Check their website to see if they have recognition in their field, such as being a top performer or received a high ranking of performance in Canada.

Attend open houses and chat with the agent on duty. These situations are more relaxed so it’s a good opportunity for conversation. Collect their business card and take notes if you wish. You’ll also see how the agent shows the home, their mannerisms, and if the marketing material is professional. If the agent doesn’t engage with you and spends time on their phone or computer, that could be a red flag.

Does the agent know your area well? If they have several years of experience selling in your area they’ll know the neighbourhood’s details and how your area is trending price wise. Even better is if they live in the same town or city where you live. Ask how they’ll market your listing: will it be posted online and in the newspapers? Will they post heavily on social media?

Chemistry is key. Buying and selling a home can be stressful, so it’s important to get along. Any tension will not bode well when you’ll be spending so much time together.

Keeping these factors in mind will help you find the agent that best suits your situation.

Contact me anytime to find out how I can help you on your real estate journey! Email me at mariongoard@kw.com or call 905-335-8808.