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How To Buy Your First Home (April Fool’s Edition)

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 01.04.2019

  1. Look At Your Bank Account – If the current balance is anything but zero, you’re ready to buy.
  2. Hire 7 Real Estate Agents To Help You Evaluate Homes – Why? Because 7 is lucky!
  3. Compile A List Of Interesting Homes – Be sure to include acreages, condos, fixer uppers, and new builds. No buying strategy? No problem. Looking at 50+ homes is great exercise.
  4. Schedule Your Showings – You want to only book your showings directly with the listings agents, never mind the agents who have been putting in several hours helping you evaluate homes.
  5. Put In Your Offer – You will want to put in more than one offer, at one time, through several different agents. How else do you expect to increase your odds of getting a home?
  6. Back Up Plan – If none of your low ball offers are accepted through an agent, that doesn’t matter. You can do it better yourself! Find a “For Sale By Owner” and get them to give you a lower price by offering to proceed without a home inspection.
  7. Save On A Lawyer – Did your 70 year old uncle practice law 20 years ago? Perfect! You can hire him to close the sale on your home for a fraction of the price.


  • DISCLAIMER: The preceding is entirely fictional and could have disastrous repercussions, please do not follow any of these steps.

How To Keep Showings Hot When Temperatures Are Freezing (Top 5)

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 01.02.2019

  1. Shovel The Driveway – Nothing screams “disinterested homeowner” like mounds of snow and no way to access the home during showings. Shovel the sidewalk, driveway, backyard paths, and any other walkways your yard may have.
  2. Call The Locksmith! – Does your deadbolt only unlock if you insert the key 3/4 of the way and jiggle it three times? Get the locksmith on-site ASAP. The last thing you want is a tricky lock to open while the potential buyers are standing outside in -30°C weather with increasing irritation.
  3. Micromanage Weather Stripping – Did you replace the weather stripping around the front door in September and it’s already worn down? Replace it again. You want the buyer to feel warmth literally, and metaphorically, as soon as they enter your home.
  4. Start The Fire – Does your home have a fireplace? Turn it on for every showing and/or open house. It adds an outstanding visual and an appeal of physical warmth that often gets overlooked in the warmer months.
  5. Set The Stage – Truthfully, staging a home is recommended any time of the year but it is absolutely pivotal which is why it still made the list. The visual stimulation of an expertly decorated home triggers a positive experience during a showing. It helps break up the agitation the buyer may be experiencing due to a rapidly rising and dropping body temperature during an afternoon of showings in the winter. Also be sure to keep a neutral, clean, or warm scent throughout the home!

Call or text Tanya LaRose, award-winning REALTOR®, at 306-380-7325 for more helpful tips on how to prepare your home to sell during showings. 

3 Simple New Year’s Resolutions to Owning Your First Home In 2019

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 01.01.2019

  1. Get The Right Representation – Buying your first home (or any home) without a REALTOR® is like playing Russian roulette. Make sure your agent is licensed with a reputable brokerage, has experience in the local market, is readily available to you, has good reviews from past clients, and is technology literate for proper logistics. Buyer’s representation is traditionally paid for by the seller so there is no reason to refuse the service.
  2. Find The Down Payment – Whether you need to buckle down on your savings or borrow from your RRSP’s there are always options for a down payment, some just take longer than others. Speak with an experienced mortgage broker to find out your down payment options. Also remember that it is okay to ask your mortgage broker how much experience they have in the field because an inexperienced broker may not be covering all of the bases.
  3. Lock In The Rate – Mortgage rates are always changing and can make a difference of hundreds of dollars on your monthly mortgage payment. When you get pre-approved for your mortgage, your broker can lock in the optimal rate for up to three months. Even if the rates go down within the three months, you can still opt for the better rate, but at least you are protected if they go up.

BUYER BEWARE: 4 Detrimental Tricks Of The Trade For First-Time Home Buyers

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 03.12.2018

  1. Searching listings - Not all home search engines carry all of the available listings, many will only carry their own brokerages listings or listings that have been purchased so you may be missing out on some great options. For full access try REALTOR.ca which will give you access to all listings, but the right REALTOR® will give you access to even more homes for sale.
  2. Subscriptions - You do not have to sign up to a brokers website to look at a single listing. If you know the address, go to a generic website like REALTOR.ca and search the address there.
  3. Paying too much - You may be inclined to take matters in your own hands when pursuing your dream home but remember that the listing agent is representing the seller and a “For Sale By Owner” is representing themselves. So who is representing you? Always have your own buying REALTOR®, they will ensure you are not paying more than the home is worth. Accept buyer's representation, it's free!
  4. Being too private - When you first consult a REALTOR® regarding your home purchase, they will have a lot of questions. Each question comes with a purpose and refusing to answer or giving a false answer may derail your home purchasing success. Trust your choice in REALTOR® and remember they are legally obligated to protect your best interest and keep all of your information confidential.

Purchasing your first home carries much more risk and liability, call Tanya LaRose at 1-306-380-7325 for professional buyer's representation.

9 Nightmarish Home Reno’s with a Horrible Return on Investment

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 31.10.2018


  1. Swimming Pool – A luxury item that, for the cost of installation, will definitely not improve your home value dollar for dollar. Plus those maintenance costs might be viewed as a deterrent as well.
  2. Faux Grass – Niche items like faux grass are not popular enough for buyers to equate a higher property value than an immediate comparable with regular grass.
  3. Sunroom – Another niche item but this one is highly dependent on climate and demographic justify the value in its presence.
  4. Garage Re-model – Man caves are very popular these days but are considered superfluous to most buyers, especially large families.
  5. Custom Closet Re-model – Closets may seem like a small project but can get away on you so approach this one with severe caution.
  6. Master Suite Addition – Although it would probably bring the home to the top of the list among most house hunters, the cost may not be substantiated as a benefit over having not completed the addition at all.
  7. Home Theatre – A theatre is luxury item that may not speak to the majority of buyers, especially in towns or cities with a smaller population.
  8. Combining Bedrooms to Enlarge One – In this scenario, empty nesters may opt for this but it does not improve your home value in the slightest and often ends up lowering property value.
  9. Chasing Trends – Shag rugs and stipple ceilings are a great example of accents to your home that may repulse buyers in a few years so choose wisely.

The Homeowners Top 5 Priorities for Fall Home Maintenance

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 01.10.2018

1. Roof – The frequent changing temperatures combined with ice, rain, snow, and wind can wreak havoc on roofs. Prioritize replacing any missing and loose shingles. The roof is your first line of defense from any water damage internally extending to damage of electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems.
2. Gutters – Ice dams are the product of clogged gutters. After leaves have fallen, clean out the gutters and downspouts followed by a good spray down of water to clear the passage way. After this, check for loose joints or brackets and replace, if necessary.
3. Foundation – Basement flooding rates high on insurance premiums. Walk around your house and take a close look at the foundation. Caulk around the area where masonry meets siding, where pipes or wires enter the house, and around windows and door frames to prevent heat from escaping. If the parging is falling apart, you may want to have this redone if your budget allows.
4. HVAC – Proper heating and cooling amounts to 47% of energy costs in your home. Move your hand around the edges of windows and doors on a windy day, if you feel a breeze you will want to replace the weather stripping or add caulking.
5. Yard – Yard functionality during the winter is best to prepare for rather than scramble about during the first 20” snow fall. Ensure you have all of the summer tools stored away and all winter tools readily available (snow blower, shovel, etc.). You will also want to shut off outdoor water values, drain hoses, and blow out the sprinklers to prevent water from freezing, expanding, and breaking the pipes.

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How To Differentiate The 3 Values Attached To Your Home

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 01.06.2018

  1. Comparable Market Analysis

Source: REALTOR®

Description: The current fair market value of your home. It is a detailed report that compares your home to similar homes based on several different factors including age, location, size, condition, amenities, etc.. The CMA also takes into consideration active, expired, and sold listings. It is then interpreted by your REALTOR® into a price range, often with a marketing plan to support higher or lower pricing.

Use: In preparations to put your home on the market for a successful sale. It can also be used as a benchmark when planning to raise home equity.


  1. Property Assessment Value

Source: The City Of Saskatoon

Description: A mass assessment completed every four years that is based on property characteristics The City has on file such as, permits, maps, land titles, and sales data. The exact formula is calculated for tax determination only and is not a reflection of what the property would sell for.

Use: To allow the city to configure each properties annual taxes and equitably distribute the tax load. Furthermore, it is used to budget and distribute funds to the city, library, and school boards as needed to operate.


  1. Appraisal

Source: Appraiser

Description: An inspection and report often utilizing three different approaches in factoring value.

  1. The cost approach which identifies current building costs, labour rates, and material prices to determine how much it would cost to build this house today.
  2. The income approach which forecasts the amount of income the property will produce in the foreseeable future.
  3. The sales comparison which considers other similar properties that have sold, neighborhood statistics, etc..

Use: Your lender may require an appraisal prior to approving a mortgage in order to verify the collateral for the loan. Other scenarios may also include asset division during a divorce, to pursue a reassessment of property taxes, or during estate planning.

Savvy Spring Buyers & 5 Reasons They Are Winning

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 01.05.2018

  1. Effective Investing – With holiday expenses far behind and possibly a generous tax return under your belt, it would be wise to invest extra funds into an appreciating asset such as a new home or rental property instead of heading to that car dealership lot.
  2. Better Quality Home Inspections – When the perimeter of a house is covered by four feet of snow and the shingles are completely covered, home inspectors cannot identify those future costs for any potential repairs. Without snow, the thoroughness of the exterior inspections can save a buyer huge costs down the road.
  3. Higher Supply – For everyone who did not want to move in -40 Celsius weather or for those families who need to move by the end of the school year, a new set of homes consequently hit the market and an overall seller competitiveness is raised.
  4. Motivated Sellers – As the new set of homes hit the market, the older listings tend to become frustrated and overlooked. It is an opportune time for your agent to delicately negotiate an excellent deal you.
  5. Enjoyable Experience – Packing up all of your belongings to move to your new home can be 10X more enjoyable in the spring. You may already be doing some spring cleaning, you can purge any unneeded items, the warm sun will be on your face when you load the truck, and a lush green backyard will be waiting at your new home - just in time to fire up the BBQ for your first house warming party.

Honey Do List: 7 Spring Starting Tips For Homeowners (Interior Edition)

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 02.04.2018

  1. General Cleaning – Time to deep clean! Wash walls, floors, light-fixtures, underneath appliances, above cabinets, windows, window coverings, and carpet. Removing any dust, mites, and allergens will make for a healthier spring.
  2. Investigate Thoroughly – Houses change over the years so you will want to investigate every corner and crevasse to ensure there is no mould growth, dampness, or openings that might be an access point for any insects or rodents.
  3. Observe Plumbing – You will want to take a look at all of the plumbing in your house from bathrooms to the kitchen and mechanical room alike. Make sure there is no sweating, bulging, or leaks on any of the pipes. If you find something irregular – call the plumber.
  4. Touch-Up Caulking – If the caulking is in rough shape, you may want to skip the touch-ups and completely strip and re-caulk to ensure your doors and windows look their best for spring.
  5. Air-Filter Replacement – Replace those dirty air filters or if you have a re-usable filter, take it out for a good vacuum and wash.
  6. Dehumidify – Depending on your mechanical space, you may be able to manually lower the humidity in the house. If you are in an older house, buy a quality dehumidifier for those higher temperatures.
  7. Complete A Safety Inspection – Check all of the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they are functioning properly. Also be sure to include a fire distinguisher in the kitchen.

Honey Do List: 7 Spring Starting Tips For Homeowners (Exterior Edition)

Tanya LaRose 0 comments 01.03.2018

  1. Check The Exterior – Once the snow begins to dissipate, you can take a closer look at your house. From the roof down to the foundation, look for any damage that may have happened over the winter.
  2. Clean The Gutters – One of the most common reasons for water damage is clogged gutters. You should also make sure you have all of the correct downspouts.
  3. Inspect Your Grading – When the snow melts, it needs a runoff so it doesn’t pool around the foundation, this can eventually compromise its integrity. Build it up and aim for at least a 6” slope.
  4. Remove Storm Windows – If you use storm windows in the winter, now is the time to take them down and put the screens back on. You should also use this time to clean the windows.
  5. Check On Lawn Tools – Make sure blades are sharp, fuel tanks are filled, and lawn products are ready so you can tackle the landscape as soon as those higher temperatures start to roll in.
  6. Inspect For Pests – Nobody wants rodents or excessive insects in their house or manifesting on their lot. If you see any droppings or signs of pests, call pest control.
  7. Service The Air Conditioner – A/C maintenance can improve energy-efficiency, lengthen unit lifespan, and ensure functionality when it is scorching hot outside. Call the professionals now because HVAC companies get increasingly busy as spring progresses. Get them to check heating and ventilation while they are at it.