Search To Find an Agent Who Fits, Real Estate Watch: Having The Right Representative Can Save You Thousands of Dollars

I found that even though this article was written mainly for the Vancouver and Lower Mainland market area the advice that they have also applies to the Kamloops market. It is important to pick the right Realtor for you. There are a number of Realtors to choose from and it is hard to know where to start.

This article appeared on the Province website on February 7th, 2014 and was written by Michael Bernard.

Handshake kamloops real estate mls listingsWith the average home selling for more than $600,000 last year in Vancouver, buying and selling real estate is a serious business where a single mistake can cost you thousands of dollars.

Those mistakes can include hiring the wrong real estate agent, so it pays to listen to the experts before you sign on the dotted line. The leaders of the two major real estate boards covering southwestern B.C. recently offered some tips on how to choose the right agent – whether you are buying or selling a home.

“You really want to know what experience the realtor has before you engage them,” said Sandra Wyant, president of the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver. “If you are looking to purchase a condominium in downtown Vancouver, you want to be looking for an expert in that area and in stratas.”

Wyant says friends and family can be a real help in choosing a realtor.

“They will be very honest about their experience with a realtor. And ask the realtor for references, as well.”

If you are new to Metro Vancouver or don’t have friends or relatives to ask, both boards offered ways to size up an agent you are considering.

“If you have open houses in the area you are seeking to buy or sell in,

you can pop into the open house and interview the realtor who is doing those open houses,” Wyant said. “During the interview, you might ask the realtor how many transactions they handled in the past year so you can get a good sense of their experience in the business.”

Ray Werger, president-elect of the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board, said the Internet has great tools, such as LinkedIn or Google or, for checking out realtors.

“I would want to know if they are a well-rounded person and what kind of person are they outside of the ‘business veneer’,” he said. “Do they work in the community? Do

they have their own website and what sort of marketing do they do and what sort of price range do they work in?” Both Wyant and Werger put a high premium on communication and listening skills when sizing up a realtor.

“Do they listen well to the questions you are asking or are they selfabsorbed and pumping themselves up?” Werger asked.

Wyant also stressed that good realtors “put your needs above their own,” something that should become obvious during an interview.

People buying or selling a home should also make sure the realtor will meet their expectations about how often they communicate with them.

Ron Todson, who is the Fraser Valley board’s current president, said that when he was active in real estate sales, some clients wanted to hear from him every few days, while others only wanted to hear when they had an offer on their home or when he had a home to show them.

Todson said he had a set system of communicating any offers or other activity to the client every Thursday and would meet the client once a month. Regardless of your communications needs, the most important thing is to make sure you are comfortable with your realtor and that the relationship is a good fit, he said.

BC Home Sales Post Strongest October in Four Years, BCREA

MLS Residential Sales BC November 2013

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Vancouver, BC – November 15, 2013.  The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 6,673 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC during October, up 26.5 per cent from October 2012. Total sales dollar volume was 34.5 per cent higher than a year ago at $3.6 billion. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $540,432, up 6.3 per cent from October 2012.

“The fall housing market is shaping up to be the most active in four years,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “Persistently low mortgage interest rates and an element of pent-up demand have driven home sales higher in the province’s large Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island markets.”

“While the rebound in consumer demand has been significant, home sales are trending near the long-term average and any continued acceleration will depend on stronger economic and employment growth,” added Muir.

Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was up 8.2 per cent to $33.6 billion, compared to the same period last year. Residential unit sales were up 5.1 per cent to 63,020 units, while the average MLS® residential price was up 2.9 per cent at $533,321.

Real Estate Outlook Suggests No Surprises in Store, Kamloops Daily News

This article appeared in the Kamloops Daily News on December 18th, 2012 and was written by Mike Youds.

Housing market analyses twinkle like the stars as people search for signs of where the economy might be heading in 2013.

The Canadian Real Estate Association is the latest to weigh in, trimming its sales forecast for this year and next. The industry association expects home sales this year to slip 0.5 per cent relative to 2011. Just three months ago, it was projecting a 1.9 per cent rise.

Sales next year are expected to drop another two per cent.

While that’s not great news for those hoping for signs of a stronger economic recovery, it’s not the sound of a bubble bursting, either.

At best, there are faint signs that the market is moving in any direction.

Overall, the province is tracking downward in dollar value and in sales, but that trend is driven by Vancouver and Victoria, where markets have softened, said Dave Peressini, president of Kamloops and District Real Estate Association.

“I think at the end of November we were up about three per cent, but you’re really looking at a local market,” Peressini said. “The fact that we are holding on in sales and dollar value up a little bit, I think tells you the market will be that way in 2013.”

The average Kamloops MLS price in the third quarter of 2012 was $369,000, showing a 3.1 per cent rise over the same quarter last year.

Peressini finds more encouraging signs over the long range.

“We do have an expanding population and some fairly strong, long-term employers and low mortgage rates. The economic fundamentals are there.”

The CMHC recently released a forecast calling for very modest increases of housing starts in Kamloops in 2013, said Paul Fabri, a Kelowna-based analyst with the Crown corporation.

“That’s consistent with the forecast for the province overall.”

There were 23 housing starts in Kamloops last month compared with 24 for the same month in 2011.

“The difference is, essentially, one housing project,” Fabri said.

There were 17 single-detached starts in November, down from 23 in November 2011. Growth in the multiples market, to 29 from 12, almost made up for the difference.

Overall in 2012, single-detached starts rose to 250 from 225 last year while multiple starts went in the opposite direction, dropping from 258 to 185.

The figures indicated that local new-housing market is in a period of stability rather than growth, but that’s preferable to the market declines and possible collapse some were predicting earlier in the year.

Scotiabank reported last week that the Canadian housing market seems to have made a soft landing with cooler but steady sales and price stability.

Nationally, sales in October were down about 10 per cent from the spring, but only marginally below the average pace of the past decade, reported bank economist Adrienne Warren.

Some of that adjustment could be attributed to regulatory changes that took effect in July, including a lowering of the maximum amortization period to 25 from 30 years.

Developer Looks at Building Hotel in Sun Rivers

This article was written by Cam Fortems of the Kamloops Daily News on March 16th, 2012.

A Kamloops developer is in the midst of preliminary work on an 80- to 100-room hotel to be located at the heart of the Sun Rivers commercial and residential area.

Darryl Caunt, president of Mibroc Group of Companies, confirmed Friday he is pursuing the idea, which remains at the conceptual stage.

“It was in the master plan right from the beginning,” Caunt said of a hotel at Sun Rivers. “But that was located farther up the hill.”

Rather than developing the hotel far from the Talasa multi-family development, Caunt said he is looking at including it at the town centre.

“We’re putting concepts together. We still have to attract an owner-operator and flag (affiliation with a chain). We’re putting concepts to paper and have to solicit.”

Sun Rivers, the golf-course and housing development on TIB lands, commissioned an economic study to determine if a hotel is feasible.

“We know the numbers. We know the summary and we know it’s very good,” said Sun Rivers vice-president Leslie Brochu.

“It’s looking exceptionally positive and we’re looking forward to something happening next year.”

Brochu said the study found the Talasa development within Sun Rivers — multi-family units that will be anchored with a commercial and amenity area — was the best location for a hotel.

“We’ve determined the best site is in commercial centre and zoning is there.”

Tourism Kamloops chief executive officer Lee Morris said she’s not surprised at the plans because the local hotel sector has “had a good, five-year run of increases.”

Morris said the hotel would likely cater to a higher-end traveller and the corporate market, seeking views and golf.

She also noted major reinvestment at city hotels, including the new Kamloops Coast Hotel and Conference Centre in Aberdeen and Hotel 540 downtown.

“There’s enough optimism in future growth that reinvestment is happening, and we believe it, too.”

Caunt — a builder and developer who is donating his time as general contractor for a new indoor baseball facility for the Kamloops Minor Baseball Association — said whatever design comes out of planning must ensure residents who purchased units at Talasa are at the forefront and lends itself to creating a busy and vibrant atmosphere.

Mibroc has completed its third phase at Talasa and sold about two-thirds of the homes in that phase.

He also said the hotel won’t affect a commitment to build commercial space and a residents’ centre, including fitness club, what Caunt called “our original commitments to our homeowners.”

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