Hani's Blog 

Keep your finger on the pulse of the Metro Vancouver Real Estate market with the Vancouver House Finders blog.

May 17, 2018

A Beautiful Home In The Quaint City Near The Sea

Do you day-dream of living in a warm home overlooking a beautiful scenery?

 

Do you often find yourself scrolling through countless properties online?

 

Have you almost called a realtor to show you homes?

 

Well, then. It’s time to stop.

Morgan Creek

Because not only do we have the best homes in Vancouver but we are here to help you through finding the best one.

 

South Surrey White Rock is one of those cities that when you drive through, you just want to keep driving in circles. The beauty and serenity of this community will take your breath away. It is nestled in the southwest corner of the Lower Mainland, around 45 kilometres from Vancouver (It’s an easy drive).  The community is 19,400 citizens strong with a booming demographic diversity. You will be welcomed by interesting individuals with amazing success stories. The locality is blessed with an eight-kilometre beach filled with sand and shallow water of the Semiahmoo Bay.

 

In terms of weather, the city is again blessed with moderately pleasant climate all year round. The average temperature can be anywhere between 23-30 degrees Celsius in the summer while as it can drop to 4-6 degrees Celsius in the winter.

 

The seaside community boasts of a well-built promenade which is frequented by children, couples and families alike. It even has a train station and pier that would be the perfect destination for a fun day out.

 

In terms of recreational activities, the city is well-equipped with facilities for one and all to enjoy. The promenade is absolutely wheelchair and stroller friendly. The Centennial Park boasts of a curling rink and ravine trails. You can go for a picnic, trail or just host a barbeque lunch at the various parks dotted across the city. The recreational centres also host a range of volunteer based programs and activities for every age group. If you have children, you need not worry. Some examples of the programs include  summer camps, excursions, movie screenings, fitness classes, picnics, adventure trails and so on. The people of this community are always filled with positivity and cheer which is just plain addictive.

 

When it comes to great education, you cannot beat the schools and institutions of South Surrey White Rock. There are a range of public as well as private schools that are absolutely excellent in terms of academic curriculum, extra-curricular activities, sport facilities and so on. The faculty is on par with the best schools in the entire country. The students from these schools have a great sense of responsibility and deep roots to their culture and upbringing.

 

Some of these schools include the White Rock Elementary School, Semiahmoo Seconday School, Clayton Heights Secondary, and Regent Christian Academy. In addition to having an established schooling system, the town also supports a vast library which comes under the Fraser Valley Regional Library (FVRL) Network. The library is filled with books across a wide variety of genres as well as authors. It also supports educational publications, national  magazines and newspapers. There are monthly events held as well which can be attended by citizens across all age groups.

 

Some of the events hosted by the community which attracts individuals from across the globe include the  Tour De White Rock hosted every July which is a bicycle road race that is attended by more than 150 local and international riders alike. Another wonderful event is the Spirit of the Sea Festival that is held on the first weekend of August at the White Rock Beach. The festival includes fireworks, parades, musical performances, and sandcastle making competitions as well as volleyball matches and barbeque. Some other local events include competitions, festival related fairs and so on.

 

In terms of local transportation, the city is well connected via TransLink that operates all the main bus routes. You can drive to nearby cities and towns through the Highway 99 which is a freeway and even connects to the U.S Interstate 5 via the Douglas border crossing.

 

Let’s take a closer look at Morgan Creek, one of the sub-areas of South Surrey White Rock. It is a quaint town which is filled with warm and welcoming residents. The town is extremely helpful and will lend you a hand in times of need. These are the kind of neighbours who remain as your friends for a lifetime.

The Elgin House

The Elgin House, in Morgan Creek is one of those properties that you just don’t want to let the chance of passing you by. The property is built in a modern yet contemporary style fitted with new-age technology that includes high-end amenities and built-in facilities. The home is a 2 bedroom and 2 bath unit. The kitchen includes stainless steel appliances, imported quartz counter tops and well-crafted utilities. The entire house as a laminate flooring which has only been recently installed.

 

The property equals a total liveable area of 872 square feet, perfect for any family or couple to move in or rent out. The home has a very classy and elegant feel to it. You can just imagine spending a quite evening with your family in the living room or hosting business meetings.

 

The homeowner has ensured to add touches and details that will take your breath away. The property faces to the north, away from the highway which results in decreased noise and air pollution. The property is only located at a stone’s throw distance from the Rowing Club which is a great plus. You can not only enjoy your summers in the outdoor pool or workout in the fitness centre but also host parties that will become the talk of the town.

 

This property is ideal for those who are looking for a home which is not only near Vancouver but is far away from the musings of city life and its chaos. It is ideal for those who want to retire or just invest for the future. This home in the city near the sea could be just the house you are moving into.

 

Want to have a chat about the property or about your buying or selling needs?

Book an appointment today with Mr. Hani Faraj and be relieved of any stress.

May 16, 2018

A Heavenly Getaway In The Oak Bay Area

Just visualize a heavenly getaway that comprises of a real community surrounded by a spectacular natural setting with miles of beach, boutique shops, art galleries, tasty food and wine. In this mix, include bakeries, coffee shops to linger in and a charming place to call your own, all within a few kilometers.

Now, imagine if this place became your long term address.

Sounds too good to be true?

That’s because it is!

Oak Bay, Victoria

Image Credit to Oak Bay Official Website

 

Come visit the Estevan Avenue in the Oak Bay Area in Victoria and see for yourself as you are sure to find yourself stunned at the sight of this delightful 4 bedroom home with a potential that will not fail to exceed every expectation. This area is one of the most requested and homes here are taken up in a jiffy. Families and young couples alike wish to live in this avenue. It is a place where dreams come true.

 

A dream for people who love their space and are incline to encourage their creative instincts, the property comes with a huge living room that offers the most appropriate setting with a cosy fireplace to keep you safe from the winter chills.

 

Just by walking around, you will also find that the basic essence of the place is freeness of space symbolic of the nature of the people it is perfect for. Attached is a deck that comes alive as the gleaming sunrays fall on every square inch of the summer glory and local transportation available right outside the doorstep to take you downtown.

 

To top the boastful structure of the property, it is located one block away from debatably the best beach in entire Victoria. Willows Beach is one of Victoria's most popular swimming beaches. An appropriate place for children to enjoy the water in a safe environment as its shallow, protected water with the views of Discovery Island and Mount Baker make basking, swimming or paddling there just that much more beautiful and exciting. Willows Beach is a popular day destination for locals, so expect wonderful conversations exploring the culture while lining up at the concession stand on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. Located off Beach Drive in Oak Bay, this popular beach is a great place to see and be seen.

 

 

Downtown Victoria is a fifteen minute drive west from Willow’s beach. It is the commercial and the entertainment hub of the city and the surrounding area. Host to the famous Victoria film festival, this is an extremely popular place for tourists and local Victorians as that is where many of the movie theatres, stage theatres, hotels, restaurants, pubs, night clubs, and shops are. Many tourist attractions are located in and around the area including Centennial Square that is used for small venue events such as the Electronic Music Festival, which takes place during the same time period as the BC Day statutory holiday and Symphony Splash.

 

Market Square, towards the northwest end of downtown, is used for small venue concerts and festivals, containing shopping establishments and eateries and is part of the city's "Old Town". Just beyond Market Square and Old Town which is the cultural and historic Chinatown which forms part of the northern end of downtown Victoria. It has a colourful Chinese historical past from the early days of Victoria.

 

Downtown Victoria contains most of Greater Victoria's and the Capital Regional District's urban high rise office towers. They house the local offices of multinational banks, government agencies, private agencies, and other types of organizations. In recent years, many expensive, large condominium complexes were built or are being built to attract more residents to downtown.

 

Love sports? You can’t miss Save-On-Foods Memorial, the largest sports-entertainment multiplex on Vancouver Island and the second largest in British Columbia outside of the Greater Vancouver area.

 

This area is ideal for families and people looking to start a family, education has also been a strong point for the area. The Oak Bay is within School District 61. There is one public elementary school, Willows Elementary, one public middle school, Monterey Middle School, and one public high school, Oak Bay High School, with the second largest student population in the Greater Victoria School District. Residents in the Oak Bay area can also register their children at the nearby Margaret Jenkins Elementary (in Victoria). There are two private schools located in Oak Bay, Glenlyon Norfolk School and St. Michael's University School.

Quality higher education is also conveniently accessible as half of the University of Victoria campus is located within the District of Oak Bay, while the other half is in adjacent Saanich.

 

Home to one of the largest collections of art & crafts galleries on Vancouver Island, the culture is reflected through the widely spread old style-heritage homes and gardens. One of the things that Oak bay is famous for the Oak Bay Tea Party and a selection of excellent restaurants, delis, bistros antique shops, as well as an English-style pub, and other establishments geared towards both families and seniors. 

 Oak Bay Tea Party

Image Credit to Oak Bay Tea Party Society

Doesn’t it sound like a dream come true? If you choose to live here, you will be able to create the perfect mix of a family life, social engagements and personal development. You do not need to lift a finger when it comes to education of your kids, going on romantic dates, travelling easily to work or even just grocery shopping!

 

So, come visit the property and get mesmerized by this unique opportunity as soon as you can as you may not be lucky in the future to own a piece of property that you can call your very own.

 

Want to have a chat about the property or about your buying or selling needs?

Book an appointment today with Mr. Hani Faraj and be relieved of any stress.

May 14, 2018

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO BEFORE I PUT MY HOUSE ON THE MARKET?

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO BEFORE I PUT MY HOUSE ON THE MARKET?

Planning to sell the special place you call home? 

 

Does it not seem like a lot? 

 

Thinking about every little detail can be pretty overwhelming. Haunted by the thought that every little thing matters when it comes to wooing and winning potential buyers? 

 

Fear not! 

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO BEFORE I PUT MY HOUSE ON THE MARKET?

Just set a couple of weekends aside to follow three simple steps and get ready to make the desired impact and cinch the deal. 

 

The first step while obvious has a level of importance that cannot be overstated irrespective of how much you try and it’s all about cleaning and decluttering. However, tedious and time consuming this may seem, it can practically be made almost painless. Start with decluttering. Extra space will be your saviour and so it is time to purge your house of everything that just wastes space. 

The goal is to turn your home into a clean slate before you get down to cleaning it. In addition to selling items, you might also want to consider giving them away for charity or getting in touch with recyclers. These are some affective ways of getting rid of huge metal junk without shelling out any money. 

You want the buyers to focus on how amazing your place is and not how messy it looks. In addition to discarding items, remove the pile of shoes from the entry, old mail that has been rotting on the kitchen table and everything else that distracts the buyers from the beautiful features that you place naturally boasts about. It’s time to clean after giving your house room to breathe. 

Cleaning and Decluttering

Deep cleaning is probably the most time consuming but is also the most important part. Maybe get the whole family involved and think of it as spring cleaning. Pay special attention to the kitchen, the inside as well as the outside of windows and the bathroom. This makes a striking improvement in the overall appearance. 

Simply, closing the toilets can do wonders. Do not forget to organize closets, cabinets, and drawers. In this case, out of sight is not out of mind. Many potential buyers will open cabinets and closets, because they are thinking about storage space. 

If your storage areas are clean and organized, it will send a signal to buyers that you take care of the house and it is easy to do so. Keeping the house décor simple also helps as people with different tastes might get turned off by what you call art. Now your house is sparkling, make sure that it smells nice too. 

Don’t cook anything that will ruin the deal. While most things like bacon taste amazing, they have this innate ability to fill the place with a certain stench. Baking cookies or using a natural air freshener are some way to express the essence of your house through the way it smells. 

 

 

The second step is to tackle the honey-do list! All the little things that you always wanted to fix but never got around to, is what noticed most in an otherwise clean house. This detracts the buyers from appreciating the real value of your house. 

Honey Do List

Image by Clean and Scentsible

So, set aside a weekend to tighten those loose doorknobs, fix that leaky faucet and paint over the scuffs from when you first moved in your sofa. Any leaking faucets and running toilets; replace caulking around tubs, showers, and sinks; freshen up or repair grout as needed; repair and repaint them in a neutral, generally pleasing colour that complements your home; fix cracked or broken windows; replace or repair damaged window screens; replace burned-out light bulbs. All of them are fixes that you can do yourself. 

Taking care of these little problems before you show your house for the first time helps the buyers visualize comfort and serenity as they imagine themselves living there. 

 

 

First impressions are a big deal. You want potential buyers to be charmed by the outside of your house so they look forward to coming inside. Hence the third and the final step is to go for “the curb appeal”. Extend your pumped-up spring cleaning to the outside of your house, too. Trim bushes, shrubs, and trees. Make sure vegetation isn’t touching your roof or siding. Also ensure that your roof gutters are well cleaned out. A neat look is always pleasing. 

house curb image from pixabay

Other than that, repair broken downspouts and gutters. Also, clean and repair concrete areas such as driveways and walkways. Be sure to eliminate any oil or grease stains and clean out any weeds coming up through the cracks. Another idea could be to invest some time and money in landscaping. A beautiful garden with lush green grass and flowers will be inviting to potential buyers. It will showcase the possibility of children playing, couples enjoying a quiet picnic and families celebrating occasions. 

Dress things up a little bit. If it’s seasonally appropriate, put out some pots of annuals, which will maintain their colour for the season. Freshen up your doorstep with a new welcome mat. Make sure the house numbers are easy to see, and in a style that complements your home. If it’s the season of holidays, decorate your home with some mistletoe or a Christmas tree or even just some Halloween decorations. When potential buyers come into your home, they will be able to imagine celebrating the same festivals with their loved ones. It’s a neat little trick which won’t cost you a dime! 

In the end, apply new mulch, river rock, and/or pea gravel if it is appropriate for your yard. This can do wonders for your landscaping and provide immediate curb appeal.

 

The final tip is a critical one. If you too are subjected to the restraints of a tight budget, at least try and spruce-up the front entrance. That first impression goes a long way. 

With just a moderate amount of effort, you can render the most appropriate meaning to the phrase, “mi casa es su casa” by making your house beautiful and welcoming, both inside and out.

 

About the author: 

Hani Faraj and his team are known to take care of their clients and take care of them like family.  They provide clients with junk removal, staging, they can help with booking a storage room, and even book movers.  There do 38 things to ensure the home is marketed and sold for the highest price and never waiver on customer service or the highest standards. 

They go the extra mile to find ways to make sure every transaction is beneficial to all parties involved.  Hani Faraj will make sure that the property you sell and the property you buy suits your needs and requirements.

Hani Faraj and his team also takes care of your property’s advertising and marketing needs. Their services include taking professional photographs and creating virtual tours and posting on different websites and social media to generate interests and leads. They also offer free staging of your home which includes decluttering and rearranging to attract more buyers.

To know more about Hani Faraj and his team, check the website:  http://www.HaniFaraj.com/

If you are, or anyone you know would be interested to sell or buy any real estate property, you can conveniently schedule an appointment by clicking the button below.

Book An Appointment With Hani Faraj

 

May 8, 2018

The April Housing Update Is Here!

Here’s the Metro Vancouver housing market update of April 2018.

Last month, we witnessed fewer buyers and many more home sellers. The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) has reported that the residential property sales in the region have totaled to 2,579. This is a 27.4% decrease as recorded to the previous year which was 3,553 respectively. This is a 2.5% for when compared to the number of homes sold in March 2018 which equalled 2,517 homes.

April witnessed a 22.5% decrease when compared to the 10-year sales average for the same month.

April 2018 Housing Update

Phil Moore, REBGV president was quoted saying, “Market conditions are changing. Home sales declined in our region last month to a 17-year April low and home sellers have become more active than we’ve seen in the past three years. The mortgage requirements that the federal government implemented this year have, among other factors, diminished home buyers’ purchasing power and they’re being felt on the buyer side today.”

In terms of detached, attached and apartment properties, 5,820 homes were newly listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service in Metro Vancouver. This is an 18.6% increase with respective to the 4,907 homes listed last year in the same month. It is also a 30.8% increase when compared to March 2018 wherein 4,450 homes were listed respectively.

On the MLS® system, the total number of properties listed for sale equal 9,822 homes in Metro Vancouver. This is in fact a 25.7% increase when compared to last year. It is also a 17.2% increase with respective to March wherein 8,380 homes were listed for sale. Moore also further stated, “Home buyers have more breathing room this spring. They have more selection to choose from and less demand to compete against.”

The sales-to-active listings ratio, one of the most important indicators in this market was quoted at 26.3% in April. When broken down by property type, here are the ratios:

Property Type

Sales-to-listings Ratio (%)

Detached Homes

14.1

Town homes

36.1

Condominiums

46.7

 

 

It is generally believed that a downward pressure on the home prices occurs only when the ratio dips below 12% while as an upward pressure is experienced on the same when the ratio crosses 20% for a sustained period of time.

Another important indicator, The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties was recorded at $1,092,000 in April 2018. This indicates a 14.3% increase when compared to last year and a 0.7% increase vis-à-vis March 2018.

Moving on to sales, a total of 807 detached properties were sold. This represents a 33.4% decrease from last year wherein 1,211 homes were sold. The benchmark price of the same is $1,605,800. A 5.1% increase from last year can be recorded as well as 0.2% decrease from March 2018.

Similarly, sales of apartment properties equaled 1,308. This is a 24% decrease from April 2017 wherein 1,722 homes were sold. The benchmark price for an apartment property is $701,000. This is a 23.7% increase from last year and a 1.1% increase when compared to March of this year.

In terms of attached property sales, a total of 464 homes were sold. This represents a 25.2% decrease when compared to the 620 homes sold last year. The benchmark price of an attached unit is $854,200. This is a 17.7% increase from April 2017 and a 2.3% increase when compared to March.

In conclusion, though most stats seem to showcase an increase, only time will tell how the economics of demand and supply play out in the market.

May 4, 2018

Want To Experience Kitsilano Living At Its Finest?

Want to experience Kitsilano living at its finest?

A mesmerizing north-east facing penthouse in a neighborhood that runs along the shore of the English Bay at award winning Savona is now available for the first time in twelve years. Distinguished by luxurious amenities, top of the game fittings and appliances along with much more, this jaw dropping property rightly claims its status as an entertainer's dream. With an open living room- kitchen style and the premium outdoor living area to host memorable dinner parties, this is probably the most exciting of the 2-bedroom homes that come to market in this area. The natural light soaring above the mountains, entering through large windows, fall upon the extensive list of impressive features spreading across the over-height  ceiling, paints a picture of pure ultra-spacious class.

The SAVONA

The SAVONA

Located in the Richmond area, the property experiences a dynamic and ethnically diverse growth as Fraser River rendezvous with the Pacific Ocean here. It is the perfect place to enjoy life in Canada without having to deal with the extreme weather. Unlike the rest of the country, this area experiences little snow and lesser rainfall.

The unique mix of residential and commercial property, agricultural lands, industrial parks, waterways and natural areas along with modern recreational facilities and programs ensure a healthy active community. The same can be witnessed if you look north from The Burrard Bridge. You’ll have a glimpse of a large waterfront green-space known as Vanier Park that emerges to promise overwhelming excitement. This spot is home to some of Vancouver’s best family-friendly attractions including the Museum of Vancouver, H.R. MacMillan Space Centre, and the Vancouver Maritime Museum. It also is the base for inculcating serene culture in the lives of all the locals and visitors with the Bard on the Beach Shakespeare festival from June to September each year. A little further along the waterfront, you’ll hit Kitsilano Beach, the place to be during summers. Complete with volleyball tournaments filled with the exuberance of competition, picnicking families strengthening their bonds, lots of the beautiful people on parade, and the mammoth Kitsilano Pool – an outdoor saltwater public pool right by the beach offering a stunning view and a unique joy, it is Kitsilano’s own version of paradise.  A number of community festivals over the course of the summer including Greek Days on West Broadway, and the Khatsahlano Festival centered on West 4th Avenue are also organized by the local community.

Along with the beach itself, Kitsilano Beach Park contains the Kitsilano Showboat. The Kitsilano Showboat, operating since 1935, is one of its kind open-air amphitheater that operates under the natural breeze with the ocean and mountains as a backdrop. It is a unique platform that offers an opportunity to all the amateur talent who indulge the audience in their view of the world through their art.  All summer long, the showboat hosts free performances from local bands, dance groups, and other artists. Its main goal is to entertain residents and tourists and providing amateur talent with a chance at recognition. It is located on the south side of the Kitsilano Pool along Cornwall Avenue. Shows typically start at 7:30 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesday, and Fridays filling the air with creative inspiration and a night like no other.

Stanley Park SeawallStanley Park Seawall

With abundant greenery, Kitsilano has organized itself in an efficient resident friendly infrastructure with 17 parks where you can spend your leisure time enjoying the city's beauty and the rejuvenating freshness offered by the climate. What's more? Six playgrounds to hone your sporting skills and an off-leash dog park that captures the true spirit of every dog lover and the love for their one true friend, add to the advantages of moving to “Kits”.

The Vancouver Lawn Tennis Club in Granville Park became a trendy club for the local elite, hosting an annual Championship which attracted some nationally successful Canadian players.

True to its hippy roots, Kitsilano is home to one of the city’s oldest vegetarian restaurants, The Naam. Open 24-hours a day, the restaurant’s yam fries with miso gravy have inspired many a late-night stop after a night out on the town. You’ll also find plenty of other healthy, organic and farm-to-table options. Down by the water, along the foot of Yew Street and along Cornwall, are lots of casual, neighborhood bars and restaurants, many of which do a great job with seafood, along with wines and cocktails to match. West Broadway is where a lot of Vancouver’s Greek immigrants originally settled, and you won’t go wrong choosing something inspired by the Mediterranean in that part of the neighborhood. Along West 4th, expect more polished dining, but still with lots of multicultural flavor.

Excelling at lifestyle shopping, it is the birthplace for the yoga brand, Lululemon Athletic that has a store West 4th (right opposite the original upstairs location) to browse the company’s range of high-end yoga and active-wear. Along the same stretch, you’ll find a number of outdoor apparel companies, fashion boutiques, cafes, beauty and skincare stores, and spas that make for a great afternoon of perusing.

Full of young people and families, this property offers a unique standard of living wherein, community and class confluence towards the best of everything just for you.

Are you already gearing up to become a part of this community? The essence of the entire community lies in its people and you could just become one of them very soon.

Want to have a chat about the property or about your buying or selling needs?

Book an appointment today with Mr. Hani Faraj and be relieved of any stress. Be rest assured that you will only receive the best quality service and home-buying experience.

 

April 25, 2018

A Home Nestled In Natural Beauty Seamlessly Combined With City Life

City of Pitt MeadowsPhoto credit to City of Pitt Meadows

Pitt Meadows is the kind of place you dream about as a child. A place to set-up your perfect home and start a family. Nestled right between the mighty Fraser River and the majestic Golden Ears mountains, Pitt Meadows is growing in popularity with a population of more than 18,000 citizens.

 

Would you believe it?

 

82% of Pitt Meadows actually falls under the Green Zone including watersheds, floodplains, forests, wilderness, wildlife habitats and so on. If you are looking to go fishing, you need not look further. The Fraser, Pitt and Alouette rivers are sufficient for fishing as well as agricultural needs. Though Pitt Meadows is an agricultural town, it has a booming business community as well.

 

86% of the Pitt Meadows landmass is located within the province’s agricultural land reserve which includes extensive parcels located in the southwest as well as northwest portions of the city. Majority of the agricultural products include cranberry and blueberry farms as well as horticultural products and greenhouse crops. The speciality also includes cut flowers and speciality peppers. It’s an experience to try these peppers. The industry also includes grazing and dairy farming.

 

The town is well connected by road, air and water. There is an airport situated at the southwest corner of Pitt Meadows. The public transportation system is also efficient with the Coast Mountain Bus Company, an operating company of TransLink working a number of bus routes within the town. Route #701 will take you to all the major towns such as Coquitlam and Maple Ridge. In terms of roadways, the Pitt River Bridge and Mary Hill Interchange Project has replaced swing bridges as well as the Lougheed Highways. The Golden Ears Bridge connects Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge with Surrey and Langley. So, if you are a long-distance commuter, you need not worry.

 

Another interesting titbit about the town, The Pitt Meadows Paddling Club was awarded the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Accessibility and Inclusion award in 2011 for Leisure and Recreation as well as Volunteer categories. The PaddleAll programs have been designed for cognitive and physically disable individuals. Access Transit even provides door-to-door service for such individuals who find it difficult to use public transportation.

 

In terms of education, Pitt Meadows boasts of four elementary schools and one secondary school which are all part of the School District 42 Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows. The secondary school (Pitt Meadows Secondary School) is specially known for its academic excellence as well as the basketball and hockey programs. The school also boasts of a field lacrosse team which is a great plus for students with varied interests.

 

One great way to spend the day that should be experienced in the city is the Meadows Maze, which is part of the Agri-tourism initiative. It houses one of the largest corn mazes which is fun for the family and kids. For people who enjoy maps or tall foliage, this is the right activity place for you.

 

The culture at Pitt Meadows is rich with community and recreational centres spread all around for public use. The most prominent ones are found in Civic Centre, town centre and the Sawyer’s Landing Waterfront village. There are many river access parks that is ideal for a romantic evening out or even just for the kids to play. The parks are well established with parking, viewpoints and picnics. Not only that, the parks also feature sport facilities, trails, bike paths and many other recreational facilities.

 

Many of the indoor facilities include ice-skating rings, conference rooms for workshops and other such activities. The river parks also have boating opportunities as well as cycling and equestrian paths. There are many classes that you can enrol yourself in as well.

 

In terms of shopping centres, Pitt Meadows is close to the new retail shopping centre, Meadowtown Centre situated on the border shared with Maple Ridge. This centre boasts of stores such as the Real Canadian Superstore, Michaels, Tim Hortons, EB Games, a Cineplex and so on. You need not worry about any of your shopping needs!

 

The Fairways situated in North side of Pitt Meadows can be tagged as one of the most desirable places to live. The property has a penthouse which in itself is a huge plus.

 The Fairways

It comes with two bedrooms and a living den with two bathrooms and patios respectively. Since it is situated on a mountain, the views are absolutely gorgeous. You will just not be able to take your eyes off it. The apartment complex also includes a golf course which is just perfect for those morning golf lessons with brunch at the club. The Fairways building is pretty close to a lot of shopping centres and convenience stores.

 

The penthouse has separate bedrooms and tons of storage. The added storage is a plus if you have kids or plan to have in the future. The unit comes with granite counters in the kitchen as well as laminated floors across the house. A ready to move-in home, it also includes a new washer/dryer and stainless steel appliances.

 

If you are not looking to move-in here but just want to invest for a future date, the units in Fairways Condo building can be rented out, just with a few restrictions. Pets are allowed as well in this building.

 The Fairways in Pitt Meadows

 

Pitt Meadows is definitely a home away from home. If you are planning to settle or just buying your dream home, this city should definitely be in the running. With more things to do that a city can offer, Pitt Meadows will pleasantly surprise you. The natural beauty combined seamlessly with the rundown of a city life is the perfect solution.

 

Want to have a chat about the property or about your buying or selling needs?

 

Book an appointment today with Hani Faraj and be relieved of any stress.

April 20, 2018

Looking For A Place To Settle Down In Maple Ridge?

Looking For A Place To Settle Down In Maple Ridge?

A lovely north facing private condo located in the heart of Maple Ridge, the home to legendary cinema like Rambo and a number of other movies and TV series, now could be your new home!

Sounds too good to be true?

That’s not all.

 

Featuring two large bedrooms, a bathroom and an open concept living and dining room, a condo unit in the Wildwood Terrace building, is a heaven for people who love their space. The walk in closet in the master bedroom invites you to create your very own oasis. With everything that one could want in a home to settle and start a life, storage is another key factor that will never be inadequate in this exquisite condo. 

outdoor pool at Wildwood Terrace

 

Sometimes a little more than a glass of chilled water is required to keep your head straight with temperature soaring to 35.5 degrees in June but fear not, the outdoor pool that accompanies the condo will make the summers pass through like a breeze.

The property was built in 1976 and still boasts of the old-time feel that you would expect of buildings built in that decade. The total livable square foot equals to 990. It also comes with one parking space and visitors parking as well. The building features a unique yet involving community which will become your own family once you move in! The building hosts its own activities as well which is a great plus for when you want to meet new people and socialize. It is great if you have kids as it will be an opportunity for them to bond with other kids in the community and make friends that last a lifetime.

Wildwood Terrace in Maple Ridge


Step in and experience what living in harmony with your fellow citizens truly feels like. Maple Ridge takes pride in its community that is always toiling to develop their sweet home in every visible aspect. Sports, performing arts, senior citizen programs and charitable initiates are a few highlights of community living here.

Maple Ridge has quickly become one of the most up and coming towns in British Columbia which has an incredible nature as well as urban setting. On the southern border, the Fraser River is there to welcome you with open arms with towns such as Port Haney, Part Hammond, Whonnock and Ruskin. These towns were part of the early settlement along the river which became the lifeblood of the community back in 1874. While as the northern border boasts of the Golden Ears and Coast Mountain which not only provide breathtaking views but also a great adventure trip. The whole setting is like it is right out of a photograph. With such beautiful landscapes, the temperature in Maple Ridge is mostly pleasant. A great plus if you are somebody who loves to go for long walks and appreciate the great gift that is nature.

The Wildwood Terrace Apartment doesn’t fail to meet even a single desire when it comes to looking for a place to start a family. The schools in the affinity provide great courses focusing upon sports, arts, technology and work towards building an able community filled with brilliant teachers, mentors and students.

Some of the town’s schools that are part of the School District No. 42 are the Maple Ridge Secondary School, Thomas Haney Secondary School and Garibaldi Secondary School. . In addition to a very efficient education system, the city boasts of a stellar public library that is part of the Fraser Valley Regional Library system and contains an impressive collection, a dream for all bibliography filled with spaces for young individuals to hold discussions and hold meetings.

The developed public spaces are marked for family picnics, various recreational activities and simply having a good time, are remarkably well maintained and promise an ideal family environment for you and your significant other.


What more can you ask?


Shopping! Everything ranging from daily essentials, antiques and boutique shops to farmer markets (held every weekend) display a wide variety of quality goods that are laid out in the town’s homely shopping centers. Some of the shopping centers very well-known include the one on 224 Street which offers several boutique shops, some of the unique ones being candle shops, candy stores and home décor. Another famous one is the Town Centre Lougheed Shopping Corridor that houses the indoor shopping centers that attracts a lot of art and food lovers. If you are worried about your grocery needs, there are stores such as Save-On-Foods, The British Store and Thrifty Goods. There is almost one on every street corner.

For those of you who love eating out and trying new cuisines, Maple Ridge has it all. There are restaurants across the district such as the Big Daddy’s Pizza, BBQ & Poutine, Smile Thai Cuisine, Bobby Sox 50’s Diner and many more.

Cultural art is also a key factor that holds this beautiful community together. Maple Ridge has several festivals and annual parades, including the Santa Claus Parade & Christmas in the Park, Earth Day celebrations in Memorial Peace Park and so much more.

Maple Ridge offers one of the largest Remembrance Day celebrations in the Lower Mainland each November 11 at Memorial Peace Park. The event is hosted by the Royal Canadian legion Branch #88 and boasts annual attendance of over 2000 local residents for the parade of veterans and first responders and moving Cenotaph ceremony.

Remembrance Day

Photo credit to Maple Ridge Official Website

 

If you are somebody looking to settle down and start a family or even just a working professional looking for some peace and serenity, the town will certainly fit the bill.

All said and done, Maple Ridge is known for its warm and welcoming people who go to great lengths to support you and your initiatives. Here, people roll up their sleeves and get things done. You won’t just build a family but will be part of a community.

Are you already trying to pack your bags and move?

Well, we are here for your every buying need!

 

 

Book an appointment with Hani Faraj and get a step closer towards living in Maple Ridge and your dream home.

Click here to set up an appointment.

April 18, 2018

An Inviting Home in Guildford's The Dorchester Complex

Ever wanted of owning your own space with everything, just right?

A living room with a cozy corner gas fire place or a balcony to enjoy both, a rejuvenating view with a cup of morning coffee and a nice nightcap in the evening?

Isn’t that a dream?

 

Guildford, one of the coziest yet happening towns you would come across is one to look out for. The entire community is filled with a sense of energy which just engulfs you and you just never want to leave.

Guildford Recreation CentrePhoto credit to City of Surrey Official Website

Early settlement in this town primarily began in 1891 in the township of Port Kells which was connected by rail to New Westminster. Post which, most of the growth has taken place around the Guildford Town Centre mall.

Guildford falls under the main district of Surrey which is the province’s third largest city by area and the second-largest city in terms of population after the city of Vancouver. Though a suburban by definition, it is the perfect spot for you if you like the big-town feel but also cherish the small-town vibes.

With proximity to Surrey City Centre and good access to the freeway, most of businesses have been established and more recently, residential development has occurred, one of them is The Dorchester complex.

 

The Dorchester is situated in the heart of Guildford on 100 Avenue & 148 street. It is a low-rise condo complex which gives you a feeling of familiarity as soon as you walk into it. As though you were always meant to live there.

The Dorchester

The majestic building is in a prime location which is close to the best shopping centers, attractions and transportation facilities. The residents of Guildford have easy access to the freeway which is a great plus for the business community present in the area. Long-distance commuting is not an issue either as the Newton Exchange bus loop and Surrey Central Sky Train station are at a walking distance.

 

When thinking to settle with the family, education is an important factor which can majorly affect your decision. This is one aspect which you need not worry about as Guilford supports great schools such as the Bonaccord Elementary & Johnston Heights Secondary. Both schools are well renowned and have had great success in terms of their academics and co-curricular activities. The town is also situated near the Frank Hurt Secondary School as well as the Kwantlen University. The town is also renowned for its extensive surrey public library where a lot of people flock down to catch up on some well needed reading.

Shopping is yet another factor you will not have to worry about with superstores and T&T supermarkets at every corner and the City Central Shopping Centre to keep you company. If not in Guilford, there are shopping centers such as the King’s Cross, Newton Town Centre, Somerset Square, & Newton Village which can also satisfy your needs.

The town also supports the Guildford Town Centre which is filled with activities all year round especially during festivals. Guildford provides its residents with recreational activities which are hosted at the Guildford and Fraser Heights Recreation centres.

On those hot days when you just have to go for a swim, you have many an option such as the Port Kells outdoor pool, Guildford Recreation Centre-Aquatics and Holly outdoor pool. These centres also boast of other athletic activities such as gymnasiums, tennis courts and any other fitness needs. The town is also filled with a mouth-watering restaurant serving world cuisines, many a times right at your doorstep.

For a great day out, you can go for a walk in the parks or even follow trails. Surrey is often referred to as the “City of Parks” with absolutely beautiful attractions such as the Historic Stewart Farm, Peach Arch Crescent Beach and Surrey Museum.

In Guildford, the two choices are the Tynehead Regional Park and Surrey Bend Regional Park. The former boasts of walking trails, sectioned picnic areas and also had the Tynehead Fish Hatchery. While as the latter provides access to the Fraser River for boating, a great idea of a first date!

Some of the heritage sites include the Bulman’s Garage which was built in 1948 as a gas station and auto service for Port Kells. It has not changed visually and now features triple bay garage doors and symmetrically centered stepped parapet. Another famous site is the Carl Mathisen House which was crafted in 1921. It features a front veranda supported by square posts which are again tapered above the balustrade rail. It is indeed a treat to have a look at how residents built their homes almost 100 years prior. 

Carl Mathisen HousePhoto credit to City of Surrey Official Website

The home at Dorchester will make you feel like you were always meant to live there. It boasts of a master bedroom which has its own west exposure balcony as well as a second bedroom which is just a cherry on the cake. You can just imagine having your cup of coffee every morning waking up to the sunrise. This beautiful home was built in 1983 and supports a total livable square foot of up to 930 which is just perfect if you are looking to settle with family or just yourself!

The living room also comes in with a gas fireplace which is perfect for those cozy days we all desperately crave for. The building also has secured underground parking. It boasts of a beautifully landscaped roundabout which flows into the visitors parking. The building is situated in a safe community with secure boundaries such that you will never have to worry about guests coming over again!

All in all, it is in fact a wonderful home which is warm and inviting. It will be the perfect setting if you are looking to buy your first home, settle in with your family or start a new relationship.

It’s waiting for you!

 

 

Book an appointment with Hani Faraj and get a step closer towards living in Guildford and your dream home.

Click here to set up an appointment.

April 17, 2018

Leave Your House and Live Your Life: 5 Benefits of Selling Your House in Your 60s

Leave Your House and Live Your Life: 5 Benefits of Selling Your House in Your 60s

Many seniors are calling us with questions on how to sell their property and how it could be advantageous for them. Their concerns especially, but not limited to, is they have accumulated so many items in storage and in their garage, they have no idea what to do with it. 

Generally, people are afraid of change and those who retire in their 60s are afraid to let go of the home they have built and/or lived in for several years and often overlook the benefits of starting over again. 

The current real estate market in Vancouver and the Fraser Valley is crazy with prices reaching new records every single month, it is becoming more and more appealing to sell your home and consider a condo. We are here to simplify the entire process and to give some ideas to objectively consider trading in your old home for a new house or apartment.

 

Here are 5 benefits to selling your house upon retirement that you could think about:

1. Financial Practicality.

Maintaining a big space also requires bigger expenses. Maintaining a house, regardless of the size, requires constant repairs, updates and cleaning. The older the property is, the more maintenance is required as well. You will also continue to pay utilities, yearly property taxes, insurance and mortgage if applicable. Even if you have more than enough retirement savings, you could be spending more than necessary to maintain your place.

Think about the money you will be spending on spaces you do not always use. 

Think about all the other things you can enjoy with the money you worked for and saved up to retirement. In some cases, you can still use the money you have to invest so that you continue to earn after retiring.

 

2. Less Space Is More.

There are many inevitable changes that happen as people age and that include changes in the physical, physiological and mental aspects. Taking care of one’s self becomes harder as years go by. You will eventually need the assistance of others to move around and do things.

Many of the stuff you own now will prove little to no use for you as years go by.

For instance, the house you own must have been bought with more residents at that time. How many are you left living in that property? Think about the bedrooms rarely or not used at all. Think about the bigger living room, kitchen, dining room and other common spaces that you do not occupy as much anymore. Think about how tiring moving around becomes.

 

3. Opportunity To Design Living Space According To Current Needs.

Selling the house you currently own gives you freedom to choose a house or a condo that would suit your current need and lifestyle. Moving on also gives you the option to live in a place you have wanted to reside in.

Do you remember the time you last looked for a house or a condo? When you decided to live in the home you live in, you were most likely in a different situation. You could have considered proximity to your office or other places such as schools when you chose your house. Now is the perfect time to think about where you want to be at this point.

Have you always wanted to spend your retirement years in a house or a condo by the beach? What about a place with ocean or mountain views.  Have you dreamed about moving to a busier city? We have a client that did a complete turn-around and moved to downtown Vancouver so he can walk everywhere and he wanted to be close to the Vancouver Art Gallery.  Would you rather be in a more laid back city like Langley, White Rock or Maple Ridge? Moving out of your current house could also mean moving into a better place for you.

Perhaps you want a smaller garden or community garden to attend to. Perhaps you want a smaller kitchen with lesser but essential utensils. Perhaps you want to let go of the stairs.

 

4. Creating New Memories.

People get sentimental and more often it is the memories made in their houses that make it harder for them to think about selling their homes. It is often the happy times that happened in the different areas of the house that stop them from giving up the space. Remember that nobody can take away those memories from you.

Cook with your loved ones in your new kitchen. Watch TV with them in your new living room. A break in routine could be refreshing. A change in space and pace could make you happy.

A house is just a structure, home is what you make it. You create your home wherever you may be.

 

5. The Joy of Giving and Sharing.

There is an opportunity to give and share when you put your house for sale. Look at all the things you have collected throughout the years inside the house. Take with you the most basic stuff you can’t live without. There are other people who will benefit from the other things you can do without. Think about the family members, friends and institutions that would want and need them.  Sometimes we negotiate furniture or appliances as included in the selling price when selling. 

Also, you give other people the chance to make happy memories in the house you live in. You allow people who once needed the space like you did to enjoy what you did with the home.   

I once sold a house and my client didn’t care about selling it for the highest price, they wanted to sell it to a family that will benefit from it the most.  The children write a letter to my sellers saying how they could build a swing set in the back yard, and how they can carve their names in the tree trunk.  My sellers were moved and even though the sellers received multiple offers and the offers were for a higher price, my sellers wanted to give the house to the family that would love the house as much as they did!  Imagine the impact you would make on a family like this. 

 

 

 

Embracing change is not bad but there are many aspects to selling and buying a property. There are many things to take into consideration such as current value in the market. While it is practical and beneficial for others to sell their houses upon retirement, for some people it will not be applicable. Some people would love to make their properties their legacy.  Other clients of ours have decided to leave their home to their children to keep forever. 

There are also different rules and laws that govern the Real Estate Industry. There are exemptions that could apply to you and some don't. It is best to consult a professional real estate agent when you are planning to sell and/or buy any property.

A good real estate agent will be able to help you reach the right decision and make the process easy for you.

 

About the author: 

Hani Faraj and his team are known to take care of their clients and take care of them like family.  They provide clients with junk removal, staging, they can help with booking a storage room, and even book movers.  There do 38 things to ensure the home is marketed and sold for the highest price and never waiver on customer service or the highest standards. 

They go the extra mile to find ways to make sure every transaction is beneficial to all parties involved.  Hani Faraj will make sure that the property you sell and the property you buy suits your needs and requirements.

Hani Faraj and his team also takes care of your property’s advertising and marketing needs. Their services include taking professional photographs and creating virtual tours and posting on different websites and social media to generate interests and leads. They also offer free staging of your home which includes decluttering and rearranging to attract more buyers.

To know more about Hani Faraj and his team, check the website:  http://www.HaniFaraj.com/

 

If you are, or anyone you know would be interested to sell or buy any real estate property, you can conveniently schedule an appointment by clicking the button below.

Schedule an Appointment with Hani Faraj

 

Posted in Selling
April 9, 2018

The first quarter of 2018 witnesses steady decline in home sales and listings

Hani Faraj Real Estate Team - Blog

 

According to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), residential home sales witnessed a 29.7% decrease from last year. In March 2017, sales were recorded at 3579 homes sold which has now showcased a decline to 2517 homes in March 2018. But, it is indeed a 14% increase when compared to the 2027 homes sold in February 2018.

 

March 2018 has witnessed a sale record which is 23% below the 10-year March sales average. The Multiple Listing Service®(MLS®) in Metro Vancouver witnessed a solid 6542 homes for sale on its network in the first quarter of 2018. This in turn is a 13.1% decrease from the 7.527 homes which were put up during the same time in 2017. Alarmingly, this is the region’s lowest total first-quarter sales since 2013.

 

REBGV president, Phil Moore believed that the less demand from the buyers and even lesser homes listed for sale has led to this statistic.  “High prices, new tax announcements, rising interest rates, and stricter mortgage requirements are among the factors affecting home buyer and seller activity today.”

 

Moving on to detached, attached and apartment properties, 4450 homes were listed for sale in the region in March 2018. This is a 6.6% decrease from last year which recorded 4762 homes for sale. But, this in fact is a 5.4% increase when compared to February 2018 in which 4223 homes were up for sale. In total, 12469 homes were listed for sale in the Metro Vancouver region in the first quarter of 2018 which is a 0.8% decrease from the same period in 2017 wherein 12568 homes were up for sale. Again, it’s the region’s lowest ever since 2013.

 

According to the MLS® system, the total number of homes listed for sale is equal to 8,380. This represents a 10.5% increase from March 2017, wherein 7,586 homes were up for sale. This is also a 7.1% increase when compared to February 2018.

 

Moore further commented saying, “Even with lower demand, upward pressure on prices will continue as long as the supply of homes for sale remains low. Last month was the quietest March for new home listings since 2009 and the total inventory, particularly in the condo and town-home segments, of homes for sale remains well below historical norms.”

 

An important indicator in the real estate biz, sales-to-active ratio for March 2018 for all property types was recorded at 30%. Breaking it down further by property type:

 

1.      Detached homes – 14.2%

2.      Town-homes – 39.9%

3.      Condominiums – 61.6%

 

 

 

The general belief is that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio falls below 12% for a consistent period of time, while as an upward pressure is experienced when the ratio shoots above 20% for a sustained period.

 

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all the residential properties is quoted at $1,084,000 in Metro Vancouver. This showcases a 16.1% increase over the last year and a 1.1% increase over February 2018.

 

While as in March 2018, sale of detached properties witnessed a decrease of 37% from 1150 in 2017 to 722. The benchmark price for the same was recorded at $1,608,500 which is a 7.4% increase from 2017 and a 0.4% increase from the previous month.

Similarly, the sale of apartment properties witnessed a 26.7% (1349) decrease when compared to last year which sold 1841 homes. Also, the benchmark price for the same was recorded at $693,500. This in turn is a 26.2% increase from the previous year and 1.6% increase when compared to February 2018.

Lastly, the sale for property sales in March 2018 equalled 446 which is a 24.1% decrease when compared to the 588 homes sold in 2017. The benchmark price for an attached unit was recorded at $835,300. This again is a 17.7% and 2% increase when compared to last year as well as February 2018 respectively.

 

The market may improve in the second quarter but that is owing to some reform changes and potential investments in the sector. We can only wait and watch.