Ottawa is grateful!

This past weekend, Ottawa was struck by 3 tornadoes in different areas of our city! With winds up to 265km/hour, it had a devastating effect!

To half of the Ottawa population, it affected their electricity immediately. To the residents of the communities in Dunrobin, Calabogie and Nepean, it was far worse. There were injuries, loss of roofs, trees and loss of homes.

Electricity has been restored as of last night to the majority of Ottawa, and the sighs of relief and gratefulness are very apparent in our attitudes. It was bad, but it could have been so much worse. We are praying for those who are still in the hospital. We are thinking of those who are in the throes of finding somewhere to live short term, and those who dealing with all the details there must be in rebuilding.

The communities of Ottawa certainly embraced their neighbours during this time. Checking on senior citizens door to door, community meals in Barrhaven set up by local businesses. It has been humbling to see how people can and do react in a crisis. There are many heroes this week, starting with our first responders! Thank you.

On a practical side, many residents were not ready for a natural disaster. We do need to take stock of what our readiness was, and maybe right now, while it is fresh in our mind, set up our homes for the future (not that we ever want this to happen again). The grocery stores were not open, the gas stations ran out of gas….cell phone service to stay in touch with what was happening, was sporadic.

We are all grateful today, breathing a big sigh of relief, and yet, we are still in disbelief. For most families, all returns to normal, but there are a small percentage in the hard hit areas, where life will never be the same, and rebuilding starts this week.

In gratitude.

Lorie

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Multiple Offers and Professionalism

 

One of the things that is important when your listing goes in to multiples....is managing the communication with the other parties, including the other realtors.

I have been on the buying side and seen some interesting situations which were not beneficial to either the buyer or the seller.  Our objective is always clear and transparent communication.  Communication that makes everyone feel fairly treated and that they had as much opportunity to win the house as the next realtor...

The other side of that - is when its our turn and we have buyers in a fight to win their dream home, the respect and courtesy is reciprocated!   Today with 13 offers on the table for our latest sold listing, it was nice to get the realtors positive feedback.  Not only were our sellers ecstatic at their results, we had a family moving in who are happy.  Yes, 12 other buyers were not happy, but at least they didn't feel they were kept in the dark, or didn't have a chance to do their very best.

We will always do our best for our sellers, but we will also do our best to promote fairness and professionalism.  It just makes sense long term.  Thank you to all who put their efforts in today.  We don't win everyday, but everyday we do our best.  That's all you can do in situations such as these!

Now more than ever...#whoyouworkwithmatters

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June's Market Recap

The condo volume numbers are robust

At the lower end of single family resale market, buyers are having to turn to condominium units as a way of achieving ownership at a price they can afford. The over supply in our condo market is no longer an issue, as it's helping to ease our overall inventory shortage.

The price of purchasing a new build is becoming out of reach for many entry level buyers.

Inventory remains low, home prices continue stable and affordable.

What Makes us Different

Sometimes you have to brag for yourself... :)

This is one of the many things that differentiates us from our competition. We sell homes faster AND for more money than the average Ottawa Realtor. Part of what gets these results is having a tried and true marketing strategy that we tailor to each property we list, to ensure our clients get the maximum value from our services. We use professional photography, staging and just recently we've started using an amazing videographer to get many of our listings the most visibility possible in this social media driven world. We are always educating ourselves on new marketing techniques, and attending training events to stay up-to-date and ahead. We believe in life long learning, innovating and constantly imporving our processes to give you the maximum results.

 "innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower" - Steve Jobs

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May's Market Recap

🤔 Interesting fact about the current market - the most active price point in the condominium market is between $150,000-$250,000 representing 49% of units sold! 🧠 Apartment condos represented 52% of that.

This is likely a reflection of the low vacancy rate in the rental market. If you can scrape together a down payment, the carrying costs of one of these condos should be less than renting. 😎

Some Important Nuances on the Current Market

Of course the spring market has been strong...holding back offers, multiple offers, sale prices are higher than the list price.  We listed and sold 2 properties for $97,000 over asking!  Thats not typical, but certainly it has been happening.

And I always get the question - how is the market?  And it REALLY does depend on who is asking that question!

The whole year, the story has been supply and demand.  No supply, high demand and you get results like the above.  Great for sellers.  Tough on buyers.

We have noticed some areas that the inventory is increasing.  Its the old phenomena of the media telling you that its a hot market, and now is a good time to sell!  I have been telling clients that for at least 10 months.  I still am...with Coles notes attached.  It depends where you are and what you have to sell.

The good news is for the buyers...there are choices now in many areas.  And in some areas, you actually may not compete.  Those areas are possibly heading towards a more traditional market.

So if you are in the selling phase - we have the stats analysed and can help you.  And things are changing weekly.  If you are buying, and have been on the fence, NOW is a good time to drop back in to the market with us.  You have an OPPORTUNITY again - now. 

We have 3 strategies for our buyers.  Interested?  You can win in this market with our 3 strategies!

 

Customer Service or Customer Experience?

Last week I escorted my young niece to Montreal to support and encourage her on a big interview in Montreal.  I decided to make the trip worthwhile and take a day or two in Montreal to enjoy the pulse and energy in the most cosmopolitan city we have east of Ottawa;)

I think the whole reason I love travel, hotels, window shopping and dining out is to experience service.  Or to have an experience as a customer.....Having been work raised in high end, exceptional, service oriented retail businesses, I am always curious about who is doing what and who is the best.  So when I am away, I delve in and look for those service moments.

Truthfully, I have fallen in love with Montreal and it was the experience after experience over 48 hours with everyone we met.  I was wowed!

But really, I fell in love with Pierre Beauchamp at the Hotel Omni, Mont Royal.  Pierre has been their ambassador from the beginning when it opened as a Four Seasons to its present ownership as the Hotel Omni.  Thirty nine years of making guests fall in love with him, the experience and the hotel.  He had me at the front door with his first hello and his first giggle.  And I thought I had a laugh!

Pierre is the epitome of everything we all strive for in customer service.  He knows its the experience, the little things, the genuine love of what he does, the genuine pride of who he represents.  He knows he is the one who can make the guest feel like a million, like the only one.  He makes a difference.  He didn't just do it with us, he did it with James Brolin and Barbara Streisand, with Super Tramp, with Stevie Wonder.....Really?  He is even more special because it doesn't matter who you are, every guest is equally important. 

I came back to work today with a renewed sense of purpose.  A quest to always look for more ways to make the selling and buying experience better than the expectation.  To make it an experience, not a transaction.  I know we genuinely care and our clients truly get that sense, but I believe we can always do better, always strive for more.  Sometimes, you have to step away, get that personal experience, in order to remind yourself, of why you do what you do.  And to keep looking for new moments we can create for our clientele, who we care so much about.

Kudos to Montreal, kudos to Hotel Omni and super kudos to Pierre...it is because of you, that I will return!  You are a one of a kind, an exceptional gentleman, a superlative role model for everyone who works at the Omni...and may I say, your service is an art.  And there are not enough artists out there!  We all need to strive for this level of execution.   

I love you Pierre!

March was hot in Ottawa - and we are not talking about the weather!

March sales volume was up 12%.  The average price of all homes was up 8%.  Whether you lived west, south, east or Downtown, your home saw a substantial increase.  It all sounds positive - and it is - we feel there are opportunities for everyone, whether you are selling, buying or investing!

If you have questions on your home, your neighbourhood or the neighbour's home, we are just a call or text away!

A Season of Happy Sellers

As predicted, the supply and demand situation in many parts of Ottawa (not everywhere), is creating a sellers market.  Great for the sellers and a wonderful way for us when we list homes, to strategize and achieve the top price possible for our clients.

We have had $30,000 over list, a townhome which last year would not sell over $270,000, get $40,000 more than 2017....can you imagine?  And the latest one, well let's just say, almost 6 figures over asking......almost like winning second prize in the lottery!  Needless to say, it is a situation which needs managing and strategizing.  Now more than ever, experience and a great realtor will help you net more than you thought possible!  

And then as a buyer, you have to be ready for this - and we have been uber successful with our buyers, because we have prepared them!  It is not a time to be traditional in one's approach and laissez faire, otherwise that home purchase will remain a dream and not a reality!

Either way, we know how important it is to align yourself with a realtor who can help you achieve your goals and dreams.  We humbly think that we can help, and would love to sit with you and discuss how.  I find the market exciting, because I love the dynamics and energy, but I know you may find it a bit intimidating.  We are used to that, and can walk you through it all, at your pace.  

And if you don't want to move, but want to take advantage of your home's value increasing - we have some thoughts on that too!  Call or text us anytime.  Michael and I are at your service.

 

Lorie Ann, You are a truly wonderful agent! Thank you for all that you have done for us. We appreciated your honesty, integrity, your time and knowledge. And Thank you for seeing our vision, I would have never though (4).png

Latest News about the Ottawa Market!

I have neglected you dear Blog!

The big news is the INVENTORY!  Or lack thereof!  The supply and demand is creating multiple offers and price increases at least for the short term!

What does that mean to you Mr. Seller?  Its a great time to call us about listing!  We have many buyers we are currently working with, and may be able to get you top dollar with low effort and no inconvenience!

For our Buyers, what it means to you, is you need to be working with a strong and proactive realtor team who has strategies and doesn't wait for the listings!  WE definitely have that covered if you are a serious, motivated 2018 buyer!  Call us and set up a time to talk about what we do differently for OUR buyers.

 

We are sending out a video with some tips and tricks and opportunities for the current state of the market!  If you would like to be on our list, please send us an email @ admin@homewithlorie.com

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Michael and I want to extend a very heartfelt and warm Holiday greeting to you and your families and friends. Whether its Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, or simply Happy Holidays, it is a time to reflect, be grateful, love and share the feelings of the season with each other. 

It has been a busy, fun, rewarding year filled with helping our clients fulfil their real estate dreams & financial goals. It has been a year of more ups than downs in the market, lots of work & play, lots of laughter & successes (lots of great stories of success this year) and failures (which turned out just fine) and through it all, we always knew that our family, friends, business partners & with each other, we had support, loyalty & friendship at our backs. 

We are immensely grateful for you, your referrals, your trust, your business & your relationship. We know there are always choices, and we strive to always be your choice, and do not take you for granted. We are actually very honoured daily to be a part of your life.

Thank you from both of us. May your holidays be bright and filled with love, laughter & the feelings of the season.

Merry Christmas from our home to yours!

Lorie & Michael
 

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Ottawa 2018 Market Outlook by RE/MAX

The average home is expected to increase in value by 3.5% in 2018.  First time home buyers and the Move Up buyer are expected to drive the demand in Ottawa for 2018.  The Ottawa real estate market is expected to be balanced.

I wouldn't hold my breath on the market being balanced.  If inventory levels continue to be light, and demand high, I suspect we will see a similar type of market in the spring of 2018 - a lean towards a sellers market.  

If you are giving ANY thought at all to making a move in 2018, please contact me via text or email, I believe there are opportunities to maximize your real estate investments and we can discuss why and strategies.  text or call 613-270-9559

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January 1st, 2018 is bringing further changes to the mortgage rules.  The current stress test for those getting insured mortgages (less than 20% down payment), is being rolled out to the other segment of home buyers - those with more than 20% down payment.  This WILL impact the amount of mortgage these buyers will be approved for and hence affect their affordability levels.

Being aware is the first step, the second step is speaking with an experienced mortgage specialist.  We have wonderful relationships with some excellent financial experts - call us for a recommendation and become aware of what 2018 will mean for you!

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A Plethora of Reviews this Month! Thank you!

Helping people is what we do!  Its what we love to do.  We don't need accolades, we just love knowing we did make a difference and we did get the job done and fulfil our clients goals!  Thank you to Rhonda and Phil, and Janique and Ben and Carly, for your 5 star reviews!  We appreciate your relationships, support and taking the time to send us a review to share!

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Holiday Contest - Best Dressed Christmas Tree

It's holiday CONTEST time and we would like to challenge all of our clients, friends, and families to a Best Dressed Christmas Tree competition. THE PRIZE - two box seats for the Senators vs. Tampa Bay game on January 9, 2018 at 7 pm in a BOX
SUITE @ Canadian Tire Centre. Go SENS Go!!!

We also have a $75.00 gift card to HomeSense up for grabs - read below on how to be entered for that draw too.

To Enter:
1. Like our facebook page & share this post.
2. Send the picture of your Christmas tree to either admin@homewithlorie.com or via Facebook messenger to our page by December 11.
3. Once we post our album on December 12 you have a week to get your photo as many votes as you can by tagging friends and sharing the contest. We will contact the winner on December 18th to give them their tickets.

How to get the HomeSense gift card:
1. Like our facebook page & share this post.
2. Tag 3 friends on this post who you know have beautiful trees and may want to enter the contest.

 

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Remembrance Day

Michael and I travelled to NYC for a real estate seminar this past week.  With one day to explore the city, my #1 place to visit was the 9/11 Memorial.  We both remarked how quiet, sombre and respectful all the visitors were in such a large, busy, loud city.

We could not help but feel the loss and the spirit of the heroes.  One of the most touching details of this whole Memorial, is the rose placed on the name of the lost person, on their birthday.  No matter which country, we all face the same feelings of respect and gratitude for those whom serve our country.  We all feel the loss and the poignant moment of the heroes who live and die for their country, without thoughts for themselves.

And in this day and at this time, we do need to remember.  And never forget.  Our freedoms rely on it.

Lest we forget.

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We LOVE happy clients...it's what makes us roll!


duo investment properties

We are delighted and impressed with the level of service provided by Lorie Ann Warren of ReMax Hallmark in managing the sale of our two residential properties (a triplex and a four-plex) in Ottawa.

With the marketing resources of ReMax, and the selling skills of Lorie Ann, we were able to list, market, and close the sale on both properties within two weeks of the date of listing.  And also, most impressively, we were able to sell one property at 100% of the listing price, and sell the second property at a negotiated price above the listing price.  In short, we were wowed by their selling skills and personal touch service.

We would highly recommend the services of Lorie Ann to anyone who is considering selling or purchasing a property.

BelleHolly Investments Ottawa