• Jim Broderick, Sales Rep | Patrick Burke, Broker | Vicky Boucher, Sales Rep

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b-LOG: May Market Summary

Interesting to write our monthly market blog for St.Catharines at the same time as numerous reports are released from major media citing reports of trouble brewing. Seems like we have been reading that for 4 or 5 years now but that’s another story. A friend of mine in Toronto listed his semi-detached 2 bedroom home […]

b-LOG: Home Buying Stage Fright

Quite often when we do something for the first time, there is anxiety, nerves, stress, call it what you’d like. Think about standing for the first time at the edge of a diving board 20’ above the water. Or you are in the wings about to go on stage for your (imaginary) Broadway debut! I […]

b-LOG: The Real Estate Dictionary

Sprawling, gleaming, soaring, spacious, cozy, welcoming, grand, etcetera etc. We all do it. We (REALTOR Writers) overuse and misuse words all the time when trying to create interest and provide background on a home. Gleaming hardwood leading to an open family room with soaring ceilings. You’ve likely heard and probably read it all before. At […]

b-LOG: April Market Summary

April 2013 Market Summary for St. Catharines Another month passes and another group of statistics arrive that more or less supports basic economics and all of those supply and demand discussions. If you recall spring 2012, we had a much warmer, much earlier spring than the anti-spring that we have experienced this year. It is […]

b-LOG: The Spring Tipping Point

Every spring we see that definite point in time when the influx of new listing activity is clearly upon us. Sellers typically delay until this time of year for two big reasons. 1. They want to get their home showing its best as the grey tones of winter are replaced with the greens and flowers […]

b-LOG: Mind the Gap – The Perils of Expectation and Reality

If you have ever travelled the subway (tube) in London, England, you have heard that well-known announcement, “mind the gap”. This gap minding is really an analogy for many parts of life, including home selling. In some ways, the concept of ‘being sold something’ applies in many parts of our lives. We are always being […]

b-LOG: Sure (and not so sure) Signs of Spring

In the past few weeks, we have seen and heard of some interesting things happening in our local market. Some were indicators of an impending spring market and others were reminders that spring may not actually be here yet. Sign of spring: Multiple (many) offers on a 1970’s townhome which sold nearly instantly for 104% […]

b-LOG: We’re Interviewing Three

Listing appointment calls. The call that REALTOR’s always love to receive. The process often goes something like this. We get a phone call from a seller who is looking to get an idea of the market value of their home. REALTORs typically see the house and provide a price or report or some type of […]

b-LOG: The Recipe for Kids and Home Viewing

When you are out viewing homes, sometimes the kids are part of the deal. Babies and the 10 or 11 plus age brackets are usually reasonably controllable as they are either asleep (i.e.: baby) or tagging along checking their iPhone (the older kids). It’s those in-between ages that can prove difficult. From our many years […]

b-LOG: Big Announcement!

THEbTEAM is pleased to announce our new affiliation with The Real Estate Book. In an effort to improve the market exposure for our clients’ listings, we have with little hesitation, signed on with this exciting and multi-dimensional publication. The Real Estate Book is an interactive digest sized magazine that launched over 25 years ago and […]

b-LOG: Which is Better…100 Pennies or 4 Quarters?

I saw a graphic on social media today comparing quantity versus quality, using the pennies versus quarters comparison. The question was, with all things being equal, would you rather have 100 pennies or 4 quarters. It got the (newly 40 year) old real estate brain thinking about how that concept relates to our business. In […]

b-LOG: The Language of Real Estate

Sprawling. Beautiful. Soaring. Gleaming. Open. Cozy. Warm. Blah. These, along with many more, are some of the usual suspects in the language of real estate. The language that is mostly employed by us Real Estate Agents. When doing anything repetitive, the risk is always to fall into ruts or patterns and ruts or patterns are […]

b-LOG: Putting a Value on Perceived Value

In most of our homes, we as the homeowner often see a value that not all buyers will see. We feel or perceive a value in that tropical basement hot tub room or imported mosaic tile that others may feel is ‘not so pretty’. In general, we can all agree that there is a range […]

b-LOG: Knowing When the Timing is Right

A quick unscientific poll recently taken by yours truly revealed some intriguing results. There are a lot of Realtors working with a lot of qualified and motivated buyers who are unable to find a home on the market that suits them. Speaking from our perspective, we have numerous buyers, more than normal, that are waiting […]

b-LOG: The FEAR FACTOR of Competing Offers

We have had a few situations recently where a buyer (not our buyer) has backed off of a property because they “don’t want to compete” in a multiple offer situation. The fear and reluctance with competing is understandable. Submitting an offer with no other buyer’s on the horizon is stressful for the average person. Throw […]

b-LOG: Tulips for Food – A Foodraiser Success!

We wanted to offer our sincere appreciation for the generous outpouring of food we received from so many clients and friends over the last week. In all, we handed out 65 bunches of tulips in exchange for a huge amount of food donations. A specific weight we do not have but I can tell you […]

b-LOG: Real Life Staging Benefits

Well, if you have ever been on the fence as to the benefits of staging, we respectfully submit exhibits A and B. Property A is a townhouse that was on the market for several months with another brokerage. During that time, it was vacant. This particular type of townhome can show very narrow when there […]

b-LOG: National Real Estate Market Info is Helpful but lets talk LOCAL as well!

We have been reading several articles posted discussing the real estate market and how sales have ‘plunged’. Check today’s Globe and Mail (Oct 16, 2012) for example. These articles are great for some but the challenge with this type of information, particularly when they are citing monthly sales year over year, is that they are […]

b-LOG: The $5,000 Difference

Another example of the difference 5 or 6 years makes. Back in the booming 2005 or 2006 real estate market, the buyer was somewhat at the mercy of the seller. The dining room negotiating table was definitely tilted in the favour of the seller. A sample conversation went something like this: REALTOR: “The market value […]

b-LOG: The Buyer Must Become the Owner

When selling a home, the prospective buyer must become the owner before the seller has sold. As a seller this can sound and feel strange but it is true. I read an article the other day that said ‘there can not be 2 different owners of a home’. In other words, the buyer can’t imagine […]

b-LOG: The Real Estate (non)Salesperson

When you go shopping for a car, are you really, genuinely sold on a car by the salesperson or are you shown around, educated and guided through the possibilities. When you make your ultimate buying decision, was it based on being sold on something by the salesperson or based on you taking into account all […]

b-LOG: Weather Related Real Estate

I read an article the other day and someone made a comment at the bottom of the story that sort of stuck with me. It was related to farming and the comment was that they were largely the only industry or job that is dependent on the co-operation of the weather. A few comments popped […]

b-LOG: Timing the Real Estate Seasons

Every year, the same general trends seem to happen. Not exactly the same, but pretty close. There is of course the “spring market” when a lot of people get into the market either as buyers or sellers or both. Then there is just after labour day weekend when a lot of people push to move […]

b-LOG: Don’t Sell Your Home – Sell Your Property

When you are selling the family homestead, particularly if it has been the homestead for many years, the emotional strain can weigh heavy. There were often new babies born, 1st birthdays, parties, special occasions, reunions, 1st steps, retirement parties, graduations and everything in between. The challenge with a lot of home sellers is those memories […]

For All You Numbers People

Interested in some local real estate market info? Take a look at some of these recent MLS facts & figures: • In the last 7 days, there have been 316 new residential listings posted for the Niagara region. In the same time period, there were 194 solds. A listing to sold ratio of 61%. A […]

When New Isn’t New Anymore

In the business of selling used goods, often, a part or parts of the product have been improved or updated over the years. Think of a used car with brand new tires, a BBQ with new burners or even a house with new furnace and central air. The common (and dangerous) denominator in all of […]

Supply vs. Perceived Value

We have noticed several examples of this principle recently. In general it is this: When buying something in short supply, the consumer may pay more than they feel it is worth (or possibly may pay more than it is actually worth). Establishing value on something that is in short supply isn’t always easy so there […]

The Baseball Real Estate Connection

Baseball is in serious preparation mode. Much work is being done. Meetings held. Tryouts successful and tryouts failed. Players sent down. Players called up. Injuries. Victories. More work and more prep. All working towards when the real action starts. For us Blue Jays fans, that day was April 5th. We watch all this work that […]

Clear the Road Obstacles

Obstacles cause pause in a buyer. They can be small, almost irrelevant issues and they can be large, leaking-roof issues. Either way, they are obstacles to the finish line of selling your home. The clearer the road, the better chance for success. In your buyer shoes, how much would you be willing to overlook or […]

Now More Than Ever, Be Different

As spring slowly eases its way in, more homes are arriving on the market. If you have been pondering a move this spring and are not yet on the market, you may well be experiencing a moderate sense of panic. A month or 6 weeks ago, there were less options available for buyers which as […]

The 2.99% Mortgage Concept

Sami El-Farram, Mortgage Broker/Owner with Total Mortgage Source 360 (@TMS360) shares his thoughts on the 2.99% mortgage. Sami writes… So I jumped into my car last night after the Sabres 3-2 overtime victory over Montreal (2 points out of the playoffs!!!) to hear one of the big five banks is up to their old tricks […]

THEbTEAM Unofficial Top 10 Things to do in Niagara

We have been working with some out of province and out of country buyers recently. Aside from the usual real estate questions, there is another big question that often comes up. “What is there to do here?” The answer is there is plenty but like any other town, you have to get out and active […]

Welcome to the Sprinter Market

As the weather forecast shows sunny with temperatures between 0 and 10 over the next week, the strange false-winter trend looks like it is going to continue. Knock on wood, we may already be easing into spring. Ladies and gentlemen. I would like to take this opportunity to coin a new phrase. Sprin-ter [noun] The […]