As we move to a more global audience, online marketing is more important than ever. In Kelowna, a majority of our buyers are coming from other areas of Canada and in many cases other parts of the world.
I have personally dealt with offers that are "subject to viewing," meaning that clients will have an accepted contract with a seller that is conditional of them viewing and approving the property. In a market where properties are selling as quickly as they are, this is a good way to gaurantee that the home they want will still be available when they arrive to town.
This being said, professional photography is a must; but photographs don't show the layout of the home very well. It is hard to do this from a 2D experience. Others turn to video which helps, but areas are still missed. MORE IS NEEDED!
So what is the New Way to View Homes Online?
The new technology used by BUZZ Internet Solutions is immersive Virtual 3D space capability. It creates a 3D experience where one can navigate through the whole property. Much like using google street view.
When we moved to Kelowna in 2014 from Vancouver, we didn't know whether or not we were making the right decision. The Vancouver Real Estate Market was blowing up and I had personally been there for 10 years.
However, we knew this was where we wanted to be. Where we wanted to settle down and have a family. We have now been here 2 years and I can say without any doubt that this was one of the best decisions of our lives.
I get calls from Vancouverites quite frequently thinking about making the move. They are from all walks of life, empty nesters, retirees and young families.With the current state of the Vancouver Real Estate Market, many are concerned as to whether they will ever be able to afford a home.
There are a ton of good Reasons to move to Kelowna. These are my Top 5.
1) Traffic - NO MORE TRAFFIC. Well...at least the traffic isn't like it was when I was in Vancouver. Between the Massey Tunnel and the Oak street bridge in the same commute, I was pretty sick of it. We currently live in West Kelowna and I'm driving over the bridge into Kelowna every morning. With Traffic, im getting to the office in 25 Minutes. No traffic 15minutes. This is a breeze compared to what i used to experience. However, that doesn't stop the Kelowna locals from being reluctant to cross the bridge. You will learn quickly that people rarely like to travel between Kelowna and West Kelowna unless mandatory.
2) Home Prices - A single family home on the vurge of being a tear down in Vancouver costs easily over 1 million and climbing. While Kelowna is seeing record sales numbers and our entry level homes have spiked, I can currently say that depending on the area, you can get a fixer upper for as low as $350,000(prices currently climbing). You can get into New construction single family residences for the low 500,000's. Sounds good to me!
3) We are in a Tourism area - We used to come here for a local vacation. Now we live in a Vacation Destination!
We would come up and hang out by the lake or golf. Now we can do this whenever we want. Work has been redicuously busy so these times are few and far between, but to have the option to take advantage of these things is a dream.
4) Family - Kelowna is the perfect size to start a family. We are currently almost 5 months pregnant so I haven't lived this first hand. But all the clients and friends we have met with kids adore the Okanagan. There are so many sports and activities to take part in. There are great schools and programs, and in many areas, your kids can play outside without the worry of traffic and other big city issues.
5) Community - When we lived in Vancouver, there was no sense of Community. We had our circle of friends, but outside of that, there was little reason to get involved. Since we have moved to Kelowna, we have become involved in charity work, and community events. We take part in multiple networking groups and sports activities. People are typically friendly and interested in meeting new people. We love the community out here.
So there it is, my TOP 5 REASONS TO MOVE TO KELOWNA. Some may disagree or have there own top 5, but I think it is safe to say Kelowna is a wonderful place to live. For People in Vancouver thinking about making the move out here, please call me. I would love to discuss our experience in more detail with you.
David Delorme - Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty - 778-821-3885
I'm sure you keep hearing the Buzz that the housing market in Kelowna is Booming...But Where?
We currently have a shortage of Inventory which is making things more competitive for buyers and in many cases more lucrative for sellers.
Have a look at the graph showing our inventory over the past 3 years. It shows the number of active listings every month.
Can you see the trend?
You can see a big drop year-over-year in the number of listings.
Sorry Buyers, a shortage of supply usually means an increase in price.
If you are thinking about buying or selling in this lovely place we call home you might want to know which areas have seen the biggest increase in price. You may also want to know which types of properties have seen the biggest jump.
If you look at the chart below you can review the sub areas of Kelowna and West Kelowna. You will see the Average Price per single family residence Year to Date in December of 2014 and December of 2015.
Which Areas have seen the biggest jump in Price in Kelowna?
You can see that Crawford Estates, Dilworth Mountain and Wilden have saw significant jumps in price. However, you can also see that in some sub-areas the average home price went down, like in Big White, Joe Rich and Lakeview Heights.
Now, lets have a look at the condo market.
The Chart Below has the Average sold price of Condos in Kelowna and West Kelowna by area.
You will see that there have been big increases in average price in Peachland, Kelowna North, Glenmore and Westbank Centre. You will also see declines in Lakeview heights, Westside Road and Lake Country North.
Why are we seeing these changes?
Low interest rates have been a big factor in the recent jump in sales. As they continue to remain low through 2016, we will see if the struggling oil sector will have a negative impact on the market. With huge spikes in home prices in large metropolitan areas like Vancouver and Toronto, Kelowna is being seen as an affordable means to home ownership.
Contact David Delorme of Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty with your Real Estate questions.
All Statistics Provided by the Okanagan Mainland Real Estate Board
I was intrigued to see what type of role Albertan Buyers would have on the Kelowna Real Estate Market last month. Last February, we saw our first significant reduction in Sales by Albertans since Oil Prices declined at the back end of 2014. Now it is safe to say things have returned to normal and March saw 17.2% of buyers coming from Alberta.
The past 6 Months are as follows:
% of buyers from Alberta:
March 2015: 17.2% February 2015: 11.8% January 2015: 17.4% December 2015: 15.7% November 2015: 15.1% October 2015: 18.5%
However, Kelowna is much more diverse than some people think. We have buyers coming from all areas of Canada and from all walks of life. You can see below who is buying and from where they are buying:
MARCH SURVEY SUMMARY
23.0% by First Time Buyers (down from 25.4% in February) 19.7% by Buyers Downsizing (up from 17.4%) * 17.7% by Move-Up Buyers (up from 16.7%) * 8.0% moving from Single Family Home to Strata Unit (down from 13.0%) 7.5% buying Revenue/Investment Property (down from 13.0%) * 6.6% moving from Strata Property to Single Family Home (up from 0.7%) * 6.1% buying Recreation Property (up from 3.6%) * 1.4% moving into Retirement Home/Seniors Community (up from 0%) *
* During March, there were increases in purchases by buyers who were downsizing and moving up, revenue and recreation property buyers, and people moving from stratas to single family homes - compared to the previous month.
Buyer Type (Family Dynamic):
26.7% Two Parent Family/Children (up from 19.4% in February) ** 24.9% Couple without Children (up from 21.5) ** 20.2% Empty Nester/Retired (down from 22.2%) 12.7% Single Female (down from 15.3%) 9.8% Single Male (down from 16.0%) 5.6% Single Parent with Children (up from 4.2%) **
** There were more purchases by two-parent families, couples without children and single parents during March, while other buyer categories were down compared to February
60.2% from Within OMREB Board Area (down from 66.7% in February) 17.2% from Alberta (up from 11.8%) *** 9.2% from Lower Mainland/Vancouver Island (up from 6.9%) *** 5.5% from Other Areas in BC (down from 6.2%) 2.7% from Saskatchewan/Manitoba (down from 4.2%) 2.7% from Outside Canada (up from 1.4%) *** 2.3% from Eastern Canada/Maritimes (down from 3.5%) 0% from NWT/Yukon (same as February)
*** More buyers moved from within the Board area, Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island, and from overseas during March, while migration from other areas declined compared to February.
These stats are important when developing a Marketing Strategy for Selling your home. If we know what types of people are buying we can focus on marketing to certain areas, or showing your home in a particular way that will appeal to specific Buyers. Contact David Delorme to discuss how we can help you market your home most effectively.
*this is an interpretation of market statistics and an opinion only. Information should not be used as a way to predict future market trends.
The January 2015 stats are in and I thought I should emphasis that while the media is putting everyone into a scare, perhaps we aren't expecting an economic meltdown due to low oil prices.
Kelowna is more diverse than people think. While we used to be known as a retirement area we have seen things change over the past few years. While having a large amount of money invested into Kelowna associated with oil and gas, it is just a small piece of what drives this healthy economy.
We have a young tech entrepreneurcommunity growing in Kelowna.
We have a huge health sector bringing a young demographic to care for our retirement base.
We have a vacation sector where people have bought strictly for vacation rentals or personal vacation use.
We have our Oil and Gas workers that choose to drive or fly out of Kelowna instead of the cold alternative of living elsewhere.
We have the rest of us, tradesmen, teachers, city workers, service workers, salesmen etc. that make up a vast majority of the 179,000+ growing population in the Kelowna Metropolitan Area.
Here are the January Sales stats for the Okanagan Mainland Real Estate Board showing that at least for January we have nothing to worry about.
Moving From: 55.1% from Within OMREB Board Area (down from 59.5% in December) 17.4% from Alberta (up from 15.7%) *** 11.2% from Lower Mainland/Vancouver Island (up from 9.4%) *** 8.2% from Other Areas in BC (same as December) 4.1% from Eastern Canada/Maritimes (up from 3.5%) *** 2.0% from Saskatchewan/Manitoba (same as December) 2.0% from Outside Canada (up from 1.3%) *** 0% from NWT/Yukon (same as December)
*** Compared to December, more buyers moved from the Lower Mainland/Vancouver Island, Alberta, Eastern Canada/Maritimes, and from outside Canada during January.
Property Type: 28.0% of purchases were by Move-Up Buyers (up from 20.0% in December) * 14.0% by First Time Buyers (down from 18.6%) 11.8% by Buyers Downsizing (down from 17.9%) 9.7% moving from Single Family Home to Strata Unit (down from 11.7%) 9.7% buying Recreation Property (up from 9.2%) * 7.5% buying Revenue/Investment Property (down from 11.0%) 7.5% moving from Strata property to Single Family Home (up from 2.1%) * 2.2% moving into Retirement Home/Seniors Community (up from 1.4%) *
* During January, there were increases in purchases by move-up buyers, recreation property buyers, and people moving from stratas to single family homes compared to the previous month.
Buyer Type (Family Dynamic): 24.7% Two Parent Family/Children (down from 25.2% in December) 23.1% Couple without Children (down from 24.5%) 19.6% Empty Nester/Retired (down from 24.5%) 16.5% Single Female (up from 12.2%) ** 11.3% Single Male (up from 10.2%) ** 4.1% Single Parent with Children (down from 6.1%)
** There were more purchases by single females and single males during December, while other buyer categories were down.
With record low interest rates and low housing inventory, now is a better time than ever to buy and sell Real Estate. Give me a call today to discuss in more detail - David Delorme Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty - 778-821-3885
Unless you are one of those lovely retirees that are in abundance out here, you need to find a way to generate an income.
How do you make your future move to Kelowna a Reality?
Growing up in Penticton, the first thing many of us did was get out of the Okanagan. Many had their hopes set on a big city life with no intention of ever coming back. However, we all hit a point in our lives where priorities change and we realize what we had once overlooked; how amazing the Okanagan is. Many are starting to consider coming back but keep telling me the same thing; "well there's no jobs out there, or a would."
HERE ARE SOME RESOURCES TO HELP YOU FIND WORK IN KELOWNA
The Okanagan Young Professionals
There is a small youth movement gaining ground in Kelowna. A great way to network and tap into it is through the Okanagan Young Professionals. They are very well connected and hear frequently about employment opportunities. This is a great resource to get you in the right direction.
Are you in the technology industry? This is where you need to go. They will provide you with the most up to date information on how to get your business started out here. The City has just started building the Okanagan Centre for Innovation which brings even more opportunity for technology companies to grow out of Kelowna. Accelerate Okanagan will be moving their facility and extending their reach when construction is complete.
Looking to start a business or bring your business into Kelowna? You should talk to the Central Okanagan Development Commission. Here is a link to a package they have put together that has a series of resources and contacts for anyone thinking about being self employed in Kelowna. Go to the link here.
If you are in Oil and Gas and are wondering what to do...
Kelowna now flies direct to Fort McMurray. It is quite possible to work in the oil and gas industry while avoiding the Fort McMurray Winters in your downtime. With the inflated home prices and rental rates, in Fort McMurray, your flight costs will nearly cancel out your savings. There are great home options near the airport that allow you to live the the Kelowna lifestyle, while still generating a healthy living in the oil and gas industry.
Whether it be corporate websites or job search engines, there are always positions coming up. We have a thriving Care sector where there are numerous high paying positions. You can apply at banks or to the city and add your resume to their stack. I have found that people struggle going the online route. With programs set to pull keywords and prescreen heavily on education and experience, it can be hard to get the interview where you know you will win them over. Use these online postings as an opportunity to see where positions are available, but don't do the norm and submit your resume and hope for a call. The best thing to do is to make some calls, drop off some resumes and follow up, follow up, follow up.
They say 90% of the jobs you get are from who you know and not from what you apply for.
Exhaust other options before focusing online with job sites like Indeed, Craigslist, and Monster. Im not saying they don't work. But in many cases corporate job postings are just put there as a standard requirement and their candidates are already picked out internally. If you want to make a serious effort of getting out here, you are going to have to get your hands dirty, call some people, and make some connections.
Obviously, one can expect a hit in gross salary when looking at wages in Kelowna vs. other major metropolitan areas. However, cost of living and quality of life can easily make up for it.
I love the fact that I don't drive 45 minutes to work anymore...unless i hit traffic where we can beef it up to over an hour. Now, I have an extra hour every day that isn't spent driving and can be allocated to other more productive things, like work or spending time with my family.
Between time saving, fuel saving, property cost reduction and reduced stress. You owe it to yourself to at least try and find a way to make it work out here.
I hope the suggestions I posted above can guide you in the right direction. If you want more immediate help, call me and I will do my best to connect you with the right people.
David Delorme - Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty - 778-821-3885
You have found a job, and you start work in a month. Your next question should be, Where are you going to Live?
Its a pretty important question.
For many coming from larger municipalities like Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto you might be thinking Kelowna is a fraction of the size, how hard could it be?
You would be surprised how many sub-areas we have out here. All with their own advantages and disadvantages. There is no wrong answer on where to live in Kelowna, but you want to make sure you find an area that is best suites your lifestyle.
One of the main Questions is "Which Side of The Bridge do you want to live On?"
Bridge Traffic is nothing compared to areas like Vancouver. I remember days where i would be in traffic over an hour to get maybe 15km. However, it is still a nuisance that can be avoided.
General properties are more affordable on the west side of Kelowna. Very few of us have an open budget so don't eliminate West Kelowna from the list just because of drive time. For the right price, it may be worth the commute.
Ask yourself these questions.
1) Where is your work? Or if you are traveling a lot for work, where are you going most often? If you are working in Alberta, maybe being close to the airport is a smart decision. Parking long term at the terminal or long cab rides can get costly when using these sources consistently.
2) Where are most of your extra curricular activities going to be? Driving to hockey rinks, ball diamonds, curling clubs, fitness centres, swimming pools, churches, PTA meetings, and networking events can come up daily. Where are most of these located. Maybe you want to live nearby?
3) Where are your kids going to school? Private school, french immersion, Kelowna Christian, highschool, middleschool, elementary school. You have a quite few choices.
4) What is your budget?
This is my current situation. Coming from experience, not the most practical. The Green is where we live in West Kelowna. The red dots represent where we work and the Blue represents our extra curricular spots.
After looking at this map, you might suggest some alternative areas that would cut down on our daily drive. I could guarantee moving to the Lower Mission or Downtown Kelowna Would save us a few hundred a month in fuel and a few hours a week in drive time. How valuable is your time?
Make a grid for yourself of where all your events will take place and you might be able to come up with a few locations that suit your commuter needs. Now you just need to make sure they check the rest of the boxes like neighborhood characteristics, home style, and school choice. Maybe you want to be on the flats with a flat driveway. Maybe you want to be up high to enjoy those amazing views?
Lets Stick to Picture and Video for the Rest!
Below is an area map of the Kelowna Sub Areas. I have also included Neighborhood videos for most of the Kelowna Neighborhoods. Use these as a reference to help decide what area works best for you.
This Neighbourhood offers luxury at it's finest. City and lake view homes, close proximity to Downtown, Knox Mountain park, shopping, and restaurants, make this a desirable area.
Every kind of neighbourhood you're looking for can be found in the Glenmore Valley Community of Kelowna, BC from centrally located condos, to established neighbourhoods, luxury homes, lake or valley view homes, town home complexes, gated communities and senior living. There is walking & hiking trails, multi-use paths, golfing, Parkinson Recreation centre, a running track, and multiple sports fields. The Glenmore valley has multiple elementary schools and a middle school, shopping and restaurants. It is also a short drive to major shopping centres, downtown (beaches), the UBC Okanagan campus and the Kelowna International Airport.
The DIlworth Mountain community in Kelowna, BC is an upscale neighbourhood located in the centre of the city giving you access to nearly every area. Real estate is very sound investment here as properties have a history of maintaining their value. There are sports fields and a winter hockey rink as well as gorgeous hiking trails with the most incredible panoramic views of Okanagan lake and the city below.
Shopping malls, hotels, businesses, restaurants, grocery stores, and recreation are along this corridor that runs from the bridge across Okanagan lake to the Kelowna International airport.
Downtown Kelowna, BC has a vibrant downtown with many art, theatre, boutique shopping and year round fitness options. Come visit our downtown office on Water Street or our kiosk in the lobby of the Delta Grand Hotel.
South Pandosy is one of Kelowna BC's first & most sought-after neighbourhoods. This community is very walkable. Not only can you access the beach on nearly every city block, you can also walk to Kelowna General Hospital, trendy boutiques, restaurants, cozy coffee shops, schools and yoga studios.
The Lower Mission neighbourhood of Kelowna, BC is a very desirable area due to its proximity to schools, sports fields, shopping centres, award winning wineries, golfing and beaches. There are a variety of real estate options available... including condos, town homes, single family homes and lake shore properties.
The Upper Mission neighbourhood is one of the fastest growing community in Kelowna, BC. This area offers stunning views of Okanagan lake and the city below. Real estate varies from newer town home projects, executive view homes, large scale multi-million dollar lake shore and lake-view estates. This area is surrounded by natural areas with hiking and biking trails including the Kettle Valley Railway trestles.
Southeast Kelowna is one of the most diverse areas of Kelowna with regard to real estate and natural surroundings. There are a variety of housing options including acreages, single family housing, farms and vineyards. There is hiking, biking and golfing, and is a short drive to the lower mission area of Kelowna and the many beaches.
These are three distinct neighbourhoods in Kelowna, BC. Ellison is Northeast of Kelowna and offers a mixture of real estate opportunities. Ranch lands, orchards, farms, family neighbourhoods, senior communities and golf course living. This area has three golf courses and the Kelowna International Airport. Rutland is an established centre with a thriving core. Rutland is a mix of affordable family townhome complexes, condos, mixed single family homes, senior communities and farms and acreages. There is recreation facilities, shopping, restaurants, schools, a water park and golfing for the active person. Black Mountain is just up Highway 33 from Rutland and has a mix of older family neighbourhoods and an explosion of newer developments with mid ranged prices to luxury lake view homes. There is the popular Black Mountain Golf Course plus numerous parks and hiking trails in the area.
Welcome to SMITH CREEK and SHANNON LAKE located in the northwest portion of beautiful West Kelowna, offering housing in all budgets. What are you looking for in an area to call home? Smith Creek and Shannon Lake are tucked away from the busy streets of the city making them great for families with young children. You'll find everything from condominiums and town homes to large scale view homes here. Kids can walk to school and it's a 5 minute drive to the West Kelowna shopping centers, big box stores and the Johnson Bently Memorial Aquatic Center. Shannon Lake features a gorgeous 18 hole golf course with views of the valley and mount Boucherie . It borders Shannon Lake Regional Park which offers fantastic bass and perch fishing, plus ice skating in the winter months. You have direct access to endless hiking, biking and horse riding trails in the hills above these areas. If you like peace and quiet, friendly neighbourhoods with schools and conveniences nearby.
This area highlights the Okanagan View.... vineyards and Okanagan Lake in the same picture. Real Estate opportunities appeal to the executive and luxury purchasers. You'll find many award winning multi-million dollar masterpieces and lake shore properties whose putting greens, wine cellars, infinity pools and lavish features will amaze you. Driving by beautiful acreages and estate properties gives you that country feel. Lakeview heights with its maximum sun exposure is one the premier wine regions of Canada. Visit the award winning Mission Hill Winery and many others along the Wine Trail. People from all over the world come to experience these world class vintages and entertainment. Schools, shopping, golf and your real estate office are nearby, In recent years lakefront condominium and town home projects have been constructed and with this comes investment opportunities offering short and long term rentals. These resorts include full scale marinas, gourmet restaurants and all the luxuries you would expect of an exotic destination. The city of West Kelowna has committed to raising the bar with local lifestyle in by restoring the historic ferry dock as well as grooming waterfront pathways for all to enjoy. Relax on beaches, access the boat launch at the West Kelowna Yacht Club or picnic at the Historic Gellatly nut farm.
Due to an explosion of growth and development in West Kelowna you no longer have to cross the floating bridge to access big box stores, boutique shopping, restaurants and recreation. Downtown West Kelowna is extremely walkable allowing you to do your errands, golf and then unwind on the Patio at Two Eagles Golf Club. Enjoy Live Music and one of the best views this area has to offer. West Kelowna downtown features predominantly condos, gated communities and mobile-home parks situated on a mixture of freehold and leasehold land.
West Kelowna estates is located on the southeast facing slopes of West Kelowna. It's just a short drive from downtown Kelowna across the floating bridge or to downtown West Kelowna where you'll find all the major department stores, restaurants and much more. There are elementary and secondary schools nearby as well as endless hiking trails and parks to enjoy. Housing in the area starts in the mid range and goes up to multi-million dollar view homes which offer breathtaking views of Okanagan Lake and the surrounding mountains. Next to this area is the neighborhood of Rose Valley which is popular with families due to the great schools and natural surroundings.
For further information on the numerous Sub-Areas of Kelowna, give me a call, David Delorme 778-821-3885.
A key reason many people choose to rent instead of buying their own home is their reluctance to sign their name to a long-term mortgage agreement.
As a renter, you’ve probably already made a commitment to a fixed schedule of payments for housing – but instead of a mortgage, it’s a lease or rental agreement. In reality, rather than being a negative, one of the major advantages of a mortgage agreement is that payments can be locked in for an extended period—which can work in your favour. Your Landlord can increase your rental payments year over year so chances are you will be paying more three or even five years down the road. Your mortgage agreement can actually protect you from the unexpected increases you may experience when you rent.
Still, some people are intimidated by the large amount of debt that is represented by a mortgage agreement. Yet if you added up all the rental payments you could expect to pay over a space of many years, you may find that going the mortgage route is actually the more affordable of the two options. Plus, at the end of the process, renters are left with nothing to show but a pile of receipts.
Rent of $1400 a month over 5 years = $84,000
Lets say you bought a home and the Mortgage was 250,000. Your amortization was 25 years and your rate was 3% fixed for a 5 year term. Your payment would be just under $1200, which gives you room for property tax and insurance to put you up to that $1400 mark. The amount you pay in interest over the 5 years is $34,600. A difference of almost $50,000. Even if your home only keeps its value after those 5 years you will have gained $50,000 in equity. Much better than the alternative of paying $84,000 to someone else.
Let’s not lose sight of the biggest financial benefit of all.
The simple fact is, when you rent, you’re building someone else’s ownership equity in the property where you live. On the other hand, when you buy a home a portion of your mortgage payment builds personal equity for you. If you decide to sell sometime in the future, that equity is something you’ll take with you as you make your next move.
Lastly, let’s not forget the creative freedom and pride of ownership that comes with owning your own property. When you buy, you decide about the home improvements and decor changes you want to make. You decide colour schemes and where to hang that favourite picture. And you’ll also earn the added equity that any such improvements may add to your home. Spending money to improve a rental property just puts value in someone else’s pocket.
With today’s low mortgage rates and some creative financing, the cost of buying a home may be lower than you think.
If you’re tired of paying off someone else’s mortgage for them, then why not call me, David Delorme for a no obligation consultation with myself and Mike Huber of Lending Max to help you find out how to make your dream of home ownership a reality.
David Delorme - Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty - 778-821-3885
Mike Huber talks about the Kelowna Real Estate Market and why Kelowna is a great place to invest your hard earned cash.
He highlights some key points that I would like to touch on in more detail.
1) Your new home in Kelowna can cost about half what the same home would have cost you in Fort McMurray.
Currently, there are some great condo options for sale in the $200,000 to $300,000 range. Newer 2 bedroom 2 bathroom condos with hardwood floors, Granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances.
With 10% down, your mortgage could be as low as $850 a month.
How much is your rent in Ft McMurray?
Also, you can cover some of the costs of your property.
Get a roommate to look after the place while you are gone and cover a large chunk of your expenses.
Here is an example:
You buy a $250,000 condo. It has 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms.
Your estimated total expenses per month - mortgage $1050, strata $250, property tax $150, home insurance - $30 = grand total $1480.
Your roommate pays you $650 a month bringing your total cost to $830 a month.
However, your mortgage has a principle payment as well. With rent, all your money goes to someone else. With your mortgage, a portion pays down your loan and builds your EQUITY.
If you qualified for a 3% interest rate on a 25 year amortization with 10% down, even on your first payment your amount going to principle is $505. This amount increases with each mortgage payment.
So what is your monthly cost to own? $325.
Plus if the market value of your home goes up...your equity will increase even further.
How Much is your rent in Ft McMurray? $1500 a month? $2000 a month?
You could save 14,000-20,000 a year just on rent payments.
You can allocate that money to equity building options like renovations. Or fun loving things like a boat or golf membership. Or think of it as a way to cover your flights back to the Okanagan throughout the year.
Or you can rent out the whole thing for $1200 - $1400 a month.
2) In Mike Huber's article, he talks about the difference in Weather between the 2 cities.
In Kelowna the average daytime temperature in December hovers around 0℃to -2℃
Is that a little more tolerable than the -15 average in Ft McMurray?
I bet it is more tolerable for your family. Your kids cant walk to school in -15 weather. Plus, we havn't taken wind chill into account.
3) The flight only takes a little over 2 hours.
Kelowna to Ft McMurray flies non-stop. When I lived in Vancouver, It would take me an Hour to drive 20km some days. To be able to fly from Ft McMurray to Kelowna easily in just over 2 hours is pretty darn good for a work commute.
4) Arrive home to your family who are happy in their Kelowna home, enjoying outdoor recreational activities, living healthy and active lives in a healthy and pollution free environment.
Let's touch on that active lifestyle you can experience in Kelowna.
Kelowna and Okanagan Lifestyle
Skiing 5 months of the year
Golfing 8 months of the year
Lots of extra-curricular activities and sports for your growing family
Over 200 wineries in the region
Hiking trails, Nordic skiing, ATV and snowmobiling galore!
For an more detailed description of Kelowna's activities, go to www.gettokelowna.com to their LIFESTYLE section.
To Summarize, Here are the main reasons why you should spend your money on property in Kelowna.
- The winters are more tolerable
- You will like it in Kelowna More
- Your family will like it in Kelowna more
- Property is more affordable in Kelowna than Ft McMurray
- Owning Property can be a monetarily wiser decision than renting in Ft McMurray
- LendingMax Mortgage rates are extremely affordable right now. Contact Mike Huber for details at 250-212-7954 or visit www.lendingmaxmike.com
- You have winter and Summer Activities that you cant experience in Ft McMurray
- Wouldn't you like to drop a boat into Okanagan Lake on your time off?
I completely agree with LendingMax Mike that living in Kelowna is a great move if you are working in oil and gas. If you are considering the idea, the best thing to do is have a conversation about it.
Call David Delorme of Coldwell Banker Horizon Realty with your Real Estate Questions. 778-821-3885
The market stats are in. We know where our buyers are coming from.
Nearly 50% of people purchasing property in Kelowna aren't from Kelowna.
The Okanagan Mainland Real Estate Board posted their standings from their recent buyers survey for July. The results are below:
50.3% from Within Okanagan Mainland Real Estate Board(down from 57.9% in July) 22.7% from Alberta (up from 18.2%) *** 11.7% from Other Areas in BC (up from 8.6%) *** 7.3% from Lower Mainland/Vancouver Island (down from 9.8%) 3.6% from Saskatchewan/Manitoba (up from 1.2%) *** 2.3% from Outside Canada (up from 1.8%) *** 1.3% from Eastern Canada/Maritimes (down from 2.1%) 0.7% from NWT/Yukon (up from 0.3%) ***
I know I wont be the only realtor posting these results. So rather than just post, lets discuss.
You have your home listed, or are thinking about listing it.....
How can you make your property more favorable to out of town buyers?
Here are 2 of my recommendations:
Always have your home show ready and make sure it is quickly available to view!
When people are here from out of town, they don't have all the time in the world to wait to see your home. I'm sure they understand that you, just like them, went away for the weekend. Or, you worked late and couldn't get the property ready until the next afternoon.
A short notice showing request is never ideal, but we have to be ready to accommodate.
Their desire to purchase might have been on a whim. They might have gone on a wine tour and driven by your home. They might have discussed over lunch to purchase in the area and took the time afterward to walk into a local Coldwell Banker office and ask a certain Realtor (me) to go see a property that interested them that same day (happens more often than you would think).
So you got everything ready for Sunday afternoon, time to sell your home! Right?
Wrong - These buyers drove back home at 1pm. But, before they did, they wrote an offer on your neighbors home that was listed. They saw it Saturday night and loved the view...THE SAME VIEW THAT YOU HAD!
I'm not saying they would have made an offer on your home, but I'm not saying they wouldn't have either.
Take Professional Photos!
Many buyers do the initial searching on their own. Even if they have a Realtor, they will still go on to Realtor.ca and look at listing, after listing, after listing. I have had many occasions where a client has asked for me to find them a certain type of property(let's say concrete highrise) than suggested after the fact to check out something entirely different that they found online (let's say wood frame low-rise).
What was their motivator - PHOTOS! - The photos convinced them to check out a property that they convinced themselves earlier they weren't interested in. - this particular client bought the low-rise wood frame condo by the way.
To summarize, its exciting to see so many out of towners interested in Kelowna! If you are selling, do your best to make it easy for these people to choose your property first.
If you have any other tips or tricks and can provide some feedback on how to make your home appeal to these out of town buyers, I would love to hear it.
So you woke up one morning and decided it was time for a life change.
Step 1) Move to Kelowna
Step 2) Start your own bed and breakfast
Why Not start your own Bed and Breakfast?
1)You can meet great people from all over the world. 2)Work out of your own home. 3)Eat Well. 4)Make some Decent Money 5)Stay busy through semi-retirement…but not too busy 6)Tax write offs for many of your home expenses
So how easy is it to start a bed and Breakfast?
Can you just put an add on Craigslist and start taking guests????
Its a bit more challenging than that I’m afraid…but not out of reach.
Here is what you need to Consider Before taking that Big Leap.
Kelowna and West Kelowna don’t legally allow vacation rentals in anything outside of RM6 zoning(High Rise Apartment Zoning). So for those who were thinking about renting their home short term without operating a bed and breakfast, you legally can’t.
Rental periods of 1 month or more are considered non-vacation rentals and fall under the laws of the residential tenancy act. Meaning if you could find occupancy you may be able to get an inflated rent amount without running a Bed and Breakfast. However, short term tenants 1 month at a time may be a little more carefree and may leave you with some headaches at the end of the tenancy. SCREEN YOUR TENANTS WELL if you wanted to dabble in something like this.
Your Property needs to be Zoned appropriately. RU1 or RU6 will work for a B+B. Medium density and low density lots say they will allow bed and Breakfasts. However, to properly operate you need a big enough lot to facilitate the parking of your guests. It will be very hard to find a medium and low density lot with parking sufficient for the approval of your license. Go to this link to view zoning information at the City of Kelowna.
You Need a business license to operate. It costs about $135 a year.
Before the City will issue the business license, they will send an inspector to make sure your property is up to code. Each room generally needs to be under most of the same requirements as a secondary suite. The inspector will tell you what safety requirements are met and which need to be adjusted (for example, smoke detectors, ventilation, window size, room size).
Off road parking needs to be sufficient. You need to have 2 parking spots for the live in owners of the dwelling, than 1 additional spot for each room you have available for rent.
The maximum number of rooms for a bed and breakfast in Kelowna is 4. This would give you a maximum of 8 guests at one time.
Once you have taken all this in and still decide to go through with your Bed and Breakfast business venture you will need to focus a little on the marketing aspect and think about what will give you the best chance at full occupancy.
Ensuite bathrooms for every room! It’s not necessary for your license, but you will have trouble getting full occupancy without it.
A view will help! Lake shore may be a bit expensive for your new operation, but you can find a property with a breathtaking view for a fair price (at the moment).
Amenities like a pool, while being a bit more work, may be an essential piece of the pie for those looking to stay at a bed and breakfast.
Be close to the action. Wine tours are big out here. Lakeview Heights in West Kelowna is a great option. If you take a drive you will see many bed and breakfasts in that neck of the woods.
Generally is a 4 month of the year business. Outside of the summer, don't expect to be flooded with guests. Budget your time and resources accordingly.
Be close to other bed and breakfasts. What better marketing than to be near an established bed and breakfast. Convince your guests to write about their experience online. Given you offered exceptional service, people will write about that in their reviews. Those people staying nearby will look you up, see your good reviews and try you out next time.
Trip Advisor, Air B+B and Yelp are some great option to get your name out there. Also, get a website, and get on google places. All these things will help bring you up the search engine list. However, no matter how hard you try, you won't be able to overtake the trip advisors, expedias and major online companies that make it their business to be at the top of the search engines. Make sure you have full, well written online profiles for all these sites.
Hopefully this rant I put together can help you in your dreams of starting a bed and breakfast. If you were searching online for a local B+B but came across this article, I can help you out;
They are located on Okanagan Lake down Westside road. Amazing Service and Great People. You have full access to the dock and their kayaks as well. Here is their website www.willowbeach.ca The link above goes to their tripadvisor page.
Have you thought about starting a bed and Breakfast?
To View this Article In its entirety Check out my more Interactive Blogging Page at www.gettokelowna.com/news-blog/
Lets get inside the mind of a first time home buyer with this question:
Should you fix-up your Home Before you Sell?
As a home seller, you may be thinking that a ‘fixer-upper’ property would appeal to most first time buyers trying to put their first step on the property ladder.
With all the shows on the Home and Garden Network you would think that that's the ONLY thing people are looking for.
Why not? you have opportunity to create equity with some elbow grease.
However, according to the results of a recent Coldwell Banker survey on the preferences of first-time buyers, you’d better think again!
Coldwell Banker recently conducted a survey of real estate brokers and sales professionals across Canada and the U.S. to determine the preferences of first time buyers. The survey findings clearly show that First Time Buyers want a ‘turn key’ property where they can simply move in and start to enjoy living in their new home.
You might ask Why these buyers aren't generally looking for a fixer upper?
These individuals have typically put the majority of their financial power into the down payment. They don’t have large reserves of cash available to start putting more money back into the property on major upgrades and renovations.
In addition, first time buyers are typically just starting out in their career and --especially in the case of single buyers -- have little free time available for house repairs. Bottom line? The less there is to do on your property in the way of repairs or updates, the more appealing it’s going to be to those buyers. In most cases, it’s well worth the investment to do the necessary repairs before putting your home on the market.
Do you think you should fix up your property before selling it?
To View this Article In its entirety Check out my more Interactive Blogging Page at www.gettokelowna.com/news-blog/
One of the biggest Developments to hit Vancouver for the next 10 years!
Just South of Marine Drive, between Kerr and Boundary, this unique development puts you right on the Fraser River. It manages to give off a tranqual sense of isolation while remaining in the city limits.
A few years ago there was next to nothing here. This will probably be the next “place to live” in Vancouver by the end of the development.
- Stage 1 and 2 have completed, people have move in and there are now over 200 residence that can call the River District "home."
- Stage 3(Shoreline)
Shoreline is a 4 storey building made up of just over 60 homes and the first community right on the water.
Construction on Shoreline will begin later this year, with completions scheduled for December 2014. Prices here start at $399,900 plus tax for a two bedroom, two bathroom up on the third floor at approximately 857 square feet. It also includes some unique multilevel units that stretch to give you both north and south views starting around 500,000.
This building is nearly sold out!
- Over the next 5 years they will look to start the next stage of development which includes:
- an elementary school,
- a highschool
- commercial buildings
- community centre with full size soccer field
10 years from now we will all look back at this area and wonder what happened to it. We will most likely wish we had invested in the area in its early stages.
- Im having a BBQ in the area Sunday the 14th. If you are interested in seeing what the River District Offers. Please attend and I can give you a tour.
Sutton West Coast Realty
Phase 2 - New Water
Phase 1 - Riverwalk
View from Kerr and Marine Drive Second Building Phase 2 - Residents starting to move in
Plans for the residential phase of this 10-15year development stretching from Kerr to Boundary. Only the bottom Left corner has been started. As you can see, this area will be a great new aea when complete. Plus, its on the water!
Romers Burger bar at the heart of the development Riverwalk pier overlooking the Fraser River
Here is a unique investment property in West Kelowna(Westbank).
35 FREEHOLD cottages
3 to 4 Bedrooms - 4 different layout options Cottages start from $499,000 Located right on Lake Okanagan, surrounded by wineries and beautiful scenery.
Only a 10 minute drive to downtown Kelowna 350+ feet of private, low bank, sandy beach Large grassy common area complete with children’s play ground, swimming pool and hot tub Available boat slips Rental program and management available Year round living
If you are looking to purchase some property and the Vancouver Market isn't your thing, my recommendation would be the Bahia Principe in the Mayan Riviera.
Many of us have been here and done the all inclusive thing. However, to us golf enthusiasts, their new development is a very interesting venture.
For the price of a starter condo in Vancouver you can have a villa beside their 5 star golf course(I've played it and i agree! The greens and fairways are immaculate and the course is teaming with local wildlife).
You can add your unit to a rental pool. The expected rate of return is 10% if rented out 40% of the year. This leaves ample time for you to enjoy it while still getting a return on your investment.
Give me a call if you want more info - 778-558-3885
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