You’re at work when the thought hits you, “Did I lock the door when I left this morning?” You check your smartphone, see that you didn’t, and click the “LOCK” button. Now your house is secure. That’s home automation for you!

 

But, is home automation a good idea? That depends on a number of

factors.

 

On the pro side, home automation can improve your quality of life. There are automation products that will adjust heating/cooling depending on whether or not you’re home, make your morning coffee when you get out of bed, and the list goes on and on. These conveniences save you time. Home automation can also give you peace-of-mind. It’s comforting to be able to remotely see the inside of your home and check that everything’s okay.

 

Home automation can also make your property more appealing to buyers. Traditionally, buyers like homes with security systems, and will appreciate other automation gizmos, too.

 

The only downside is the cost. Like most new technology, home automation products can be pricey and may become out-of-date within just a few years.

 

Thinking about it? Experts advise you to do your research first. Check out product reviews online. Then, if you determine that a particular product is going to benefit you, go for it!

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We are excited to announce that Bruce Fournier is now a SRES - Seniors Real Estate Specialist! 

SRES designation signifies that I have received specialized education to help people aged 50 plus through lifestyle transitions, refinancing or selling the family home. It is an official training and designation offered through the National Association of Realtors. 

 

With the active senior's population in Chilliwack, Bruce felt it was an important skillset to add to his services. Many of his clients have been with Bruce for years so helping them and their family through these transitions is important to him. 

Be confident that Bruce and his hardworking team have your best interest in mind and the right tools for the job. Call him today. 

 

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The kids have been back in school for awhile, the leaves are turning and a chill is in the air. If you’re like most homeowners, fall also means an opportunity to spruce up your yard and cut down on the work you’ll need to do when the weather turns warm again. A little bit of work in the fall will really pay off with spring rounds around. 

  • RAKE THOSE LEAVES - Once the snow flies, an unraked layer of leaves can get matted down over the turf and smother it all winter long. Raking or using a mulching mover in the fall helps avoid dead patches in the spring. But in the garden, don’t worry about getting every last leaf as they help insulate plants, and as they decompose, they provide valuable nutrients. 
  • MOW A FINAL TIME - Trim turf down to 11/4” for the last cut of the season. Disease has a harder time with shorter grass, and fallen leaves blow across the lawn because they have nothing to latch on to. Don’t go too low though. 
  • FEED THE GRASS - Fertilizing in the fall is like a day at the spa for your lawn. Using a slow-release fertilizer allow the grass to soak up nutrients and, just as important, spend the cool days and nights of autumn recovering from summer heat and stress. And building a healthy rejuvenated lawn is one of the best ways to protect against heat, cold, drought, insects and other stresses. 
  • AERATE THE LAWN - If rainfall pools on the grass, it’s time to aerate compressed soil so water and nutrients can reach the roots. A garden fork can do the job on a small yard, or a power aerator for larger areas.
  • WEED ALL ABOUT IT - Weeding in the fall is probably the most valuable thing you can do to prepare for spring, and it’s one many people overlook. 
  • CLEAN OUT YOUR GARDEN - Fruits and vegetables left in the garden can rot all winter long, and provide a comfy home for insect eggs so be sure to clear them out. Now is the time to get rid of diseased plants too, but keep them out of the compost pile so the problems do not spread. 
  • TRIM DEAD LIMBS - Lifeless branches can succumb to winter snow and winds, endangering you and your home. You can take care of the small trees by cutting cracked, loose and diseased limbs close to (but not flush) the trunk. Leave the wounds exposed to heal. Call in the pros for bigger jobs. 
  • GIVE YOUR TOOLS A TUNE-UP - Wipe down your tools and remove any dirt and debris on your tools before putting them away for the winter. You can even apply a light layer of oil to keep them all from rusting. 

 

 

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I recently reconnected with a client that I had dealt with in the past,  I helped with buying and selling their homes. We first met several years ago, they had a for sale by owner sign on their lawn. I thought the sign to mean that they were inviting me in, so I knocked on the door to say hello. We got to know each other, they liked me and I liked them.

 

They agreed I was trustworthy, hardworking and a nice guy and so agreed that I  look after the sale of their home and to help find them a new home.

 

We signed an agreement to list their home for sale .I started my marketing plan immediately to find a buyer and get the property sold.

 

It didn’t take long…there was a sold sticker on my sign on their front lawn, they were very happy. I looked after all the details and paperwork and the sellers were happily packing and moving off  to the new home I had found for them. We became good friends.

 

A number of years later, sadly, one of my friends passed away. The house was sold. BUT the Realtor that listed the home was not me. The trusted friend! I was upset and disappointed. I thought I had done something wrong! But there was nothing that could have been done to reverse the awful mistake. I moved on.

 

A number of years later I received a call. It was that same trusted friend. I was so happy to hear from my friend, how are you my dear?

 

She volunteered…” I have to apologize” she said.

 

“Why”, I asked

 

“I was led astray when I sold the house you worked so hard to find for us. My niece had just obtained her Real Estate licence, I felt obligated to hire her to sell the home for me. But it was all a mistake. I should have called you! It was such a long time selling the house, in the end I don’t think I got a fair price. Then,she talked me into buying this home I am in and I don’t like it. Please get me out of here, I trust you. I know you can help.”

 

I said ”Thank you for your trust in me, lets get to work.”

 

Bruce & The Hardworking Nice Team is Never Too Busy for You. I hope you enjoyed my story. I will be featuring more in the upcoming months so check back often! 

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1. Leftover home owners

By far, one of the top offenses cited by buyer’s REALTOR was home owners still lingering around when REALTORS arrived with clients to preview the home. Awkward encounters ranged from buyers finding SELLERS taking a shower, asleep in the bed and SELLERS who liked to follow BUYERS and the REALTOR all over the home to see what they thought.


2. Pets and their messes

REALTORS also cited the not-so-friendly dog and kitty encounters as a top offense. Even pets left in a crate can pose a distraction since they might make noise the entire time BUYERS are in the house. Plus, if they seem mean, the buyer might not even step in the room. Bruce Fournier of Remax Chilliwack says he recently was given showing instructions from a listing REALTOR who told him the family’s “friendly dog” would be at home. But when Fournier unlocked the front door with his client for the showing, a pit bull was staring down at them from the top of the staircase, growling. “We closed the door and left!”


3. Bad smells

A displeasing smell can really turn buyers off. Common offenses include cooking smells lingering around the home, such as garlic, fried bacon, or fish. Also, watch for cigarette smoke and animal smells, Fournier says.
“SELLERS get immune to the smell that their pets have embedded on their property says Louise Henry of Pair Home Design “Anyone opening the door will smell it immediately -- even if there are air fresheners trying to cover up the smell. If you have a pet, there will be an odor. Don’t scare your buyers away: Paint, clean the carpeting and furniture. Take the odor seriously and do what is needed, even if it means replacing the carpet.”


4. Critters running wild

Wild animals and pests roaming around is a surefire way to send buyers running. REALTORS described worms crawling on the basement floor and raccoons and squirrels lounging in the attic. “I showed a house in Sardis once with a baby alligator in a cage in the dining room,” said Bruce Fournier of Remax Realty in Chilliwack. It also smelled bad.


5. Unusual home makeovers

Do-it-yourself disasters were also prevalent, like doors opening the wrong way or unprofessional paint jobs, sloppy moldings, poor finishing, incorrect wiring. Also, rooms not being used for their intended purposes can confuse buyers, such as an office or den being used as a bedroom even though it has no closet, says Fournier.


6. Dirt and clutter

There were a number of offenses cited when it came to cleanliness: Dirty laundry piles, dishes on the counter or in the sink, unmade beds, clothes scattered about, soiled carpets, dirty air conditioner filters, and overflowing trash cans.
“One of the worst things I have seen is piles and piles of clothes in every room, “It was like an obstacle for the buyer trying to walk around the mess.”


7. Personal information left in plain sight

SELLERS should be careful not to leave in plain sight important documents that may be easily read. REALTORS say they’ve seen personal information like bank and credit card statements—even mortgage payoff notices—left on the kitchen counter.
“Buyers look at everything,” Says Fournier, among other things, I’ve even seen the contract for the sellers’ next purchase sitting on the kitchen countertop.


8. Too dark

Dark or dimly lit houses aren’t showing the home in the best light. “Particularly homes lit with CFL bulbs , Says Louise Henry, a staging professional “By the time the bulbs light up, the buyer has left the room.” Energy efficient bulbs need time to warm up before they are at their brightest, so staging professionals usually recommend turning on any light fixtures with or without CFL bulbs prior to the showing.


9. Incorrect and missing keys from lockboxes

All too often, REALTORS arrive at a listing appointment with their client only to find there’s no key to get in. “I actually had a SELLERS REALTOR who wanted me to open the door for my clients by going through the dog run as a large dog barked like crazy,” says Fournier.


10. Distracting photos

Be aware of the photos displayed on the walls too. Fournier recalls showing a family a home that had life-sized, inappropriate photos hanging, which left his clients heading for the door covering their eyes. As well, family photos can be very distracting.

If you are considering a move call me for a free copy of our helpful DVD "FIT TO SELL"

Bruce Fournier
HardworkingNiceGuy
Remax Nyda Realty



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Bruce Fournier & Sharon Hoffman: Chilliwack Realtors
Office: (604) 819-0120
Toll Free: (800) 830-7175
Bruce's Cell: (604) 819-0120

Bruce Fournier & Associates are RE/MAX realtors located in beautiful Chilliwack, BC. We serve all parts of Chilliwack and the surrounding areas including Agassiz, Promontory, Sardis, Greendale, Cultus Lake, Harrison Hot Springs, Rosedale, Yarrow and Ryder Lake.