Recycle, Reduce, Redecorate.

Ikea will buy back your used furniture for store credit, I love this idea!!

Time to handle some obligatory objections…

#1 They’ll only give you pennies on the dollar:
– Of course they will, this is your used furniture we’re talking about!
– Ikea is obviously aiming at those of us who were going to chuck our old furniture in the dumpster. For those of you who were already going to thrift, hand-down or donate – do that! This is not a better or mandatory option – this is just giving consumers more reasons to think before they dump, and maybe even help #maketheworldabetterplace

#2 Now you have to lug your butt (and furniture) all the way back to Ikea:
– Let’s face it, if you were going to toss that old dresser then you were going to have to lug it out of your room and down to the dump. And if you planned to replace it, a trip back to Ikea was already in store for your future. Why not do it and also earn little store credit!

So let’s pass this info along and help our fellow consumer earn a little buck while not completely trashing the planet as we style our homes!

Discount mortgages dry up as Canadian borrowers face tough test

Reblogged from The Globe and Mail, Tim Shufelt

The discount mortgages that stoked the Canadian housing boom are disappearing, increasing the likelihood of a correction in home values.

On Thursday, Royal Bank of Canada will hike its five-year fixed-rate mortgage to 3.89 per cent, one day after the Bank of Montreal raised its rate to 3.79 per cent. The other major lenders are all moving in the same direction.

The increases mean the cost of a new fixed-rate mortgage has climbed by more than a third in five months, signalling what could be the beginning of the end of ultra-cheap credit in Canada – and the start of fiscal pain for consumers who have overburdened themselves with debt.

“I think this is the real thing,” said Benjamin Tal, deputy chief economist at CIBC World Markets. “This is the end of extremely low interest rates. They’re simply unsustainable.”

Read More … 586 more words

How to improve your real estate photography: 101

With Real Estate it’s location location location, and photography it’s all about lighting. Never have I seen that more poignantly illustrated than with these before and after shots, really great tips!

Homes & Land® Of Montreal

Article 5Henri Cartier-Bresson, largely considered the father of photo jounalism once said, “Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.” If this were true, it might explain why so many Realtors’ pictures aren’t suitable to market their listings. Lets face it, taking great pictures is a lot harder than most people are willing like to admit. But moreover, the importance of having great pictures shouldn’t be understated, especially for real estate agents who rely on them as an important tool to communicate with clients.

So this month’s tutorial is about, what else, light! In photography, lighting makes all the difference in the world, so you should try and work with it, instead of against it. Pop quiz: what light makes for the best pictures? (1) Direct sunlight (2) An overcast sky (3) Or twilight? In order, the best answers would be 3, 2, 1.

If you said direct sunlight you’re not alone as this is what’s most intuitive, but this light causes all kinds…

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Jake Palmer, Real Estate Agent, Lists Home as ‘Not Haunted,’ ‘Fog Resistant’

Here’s a goody from last year’s news reel.

Reblogged from Graham Wood

What’s a home’s selling point? A gracious living room with a stunning fireplace and original moldings that capture its natural elegance? A private deck that spills onto a lush backyard lined with maple trees? Country charm just steps from the heartbeat of the city?

Well, one house in real estate agent Jake Palmer’s portfolio has all of this — but he’s not banking on any of those features to land a buyer. Instead, he’s advertising the home’s less obvious virtues: no ghosts, indoor plumbing and, of course, fog resistance.

To spice up a listing that has gone stale for months, Palmer, a RE/MAX agent based in Saint John in the Canadian province of New Brunswick, decided to use humor to light a fire under prospective buyers. He’s been posting signs in front of the home that say “not haunted,” “indoor plumbing” and “fog resistant.”

There’s also: “It’s a brick, house” and “love shack, baby!”

Read More … 214 more words and check out all of Jake Palmer’s Silly Signs

Your Refrigerator Can Make a Deal

Denise Goding

refrigerventionSince appliances can convey with a home, staging the refrigerator is important as no detail is too small for a home buyer.  Ever thought that while you’re decluttering and making everything sparkling clean, the main kitchen appliance could use freshening up as well? Cringing at the thought of what will they see when they open the doors?

Over-stuffed, sticky shelves? Expired veggies that are growing a friend? Vile smells?

The contents of a seller’s fridge may say a lot about a home owner. It may even have the potential to leave a potential buyer with a negative impression.

The New York Times recently devoted an entire article to a place often overlooked in real estate showings: The refrigerator.

When writer Richard Samson with The New York Times was getting ready to sell his apartment, he suddenly became alarmed at the contents of his refrigerator. “From the perspective of the nervous buyer, I realized that my…

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