Spring and summer are always a great time to sell or buy a house. The sun is out longer, lawns are green and flowers are blooming. And then there is fall, full of the smell of fresh fallen leaves, pumpkin spice lattes and big comfy sweaters. However as great as fall appeals to all the senses, for some reason the cooler months give new buyers and home sellers negative thoughts about the current real estate market and they are unsure how to navigate. Here are some of the thoughts associated with the fall real estate market and why you could be wrong about some of them.

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Since it’s the last long weekend of the summer, I have decided to take a break from blogging about real estate and instead tell you about all the fun activities that are going on in Leeds and Grenville to make sure you get the most out of your long weekend!

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The Small Stuff – If you think getting pre-approved for a home is the first step, think again. An even better first step before even getting pre-approved is to pay off any small debt. Chances are if you are a millennial you also have student loans, but you shouldn’t worry about those as much as credit card debt and/or car payments and any other monthly bills. Also, make sure you pay them on time.

The Budget – This one speaks for itself. Once you’ve paid off your smaller debt you can take a better look what you can afford (make sure to be realistic). There are many great budget apps and affordability calculators online to help you.  Remember one of the best ways to reach a goal is to write it down. If you need some tips and tricks on how to save for a down payment quickly and easily, take a visit to my previous blog ‎ for 7 creative ways to save for a down payment.

Save, Save, Save – This is one of, if not the most important step. If you haven’t already started, once you are thinking about purchasing a new home you should start saving right away.  You will not only need to save money for a down payment but also, closing costs, inspections, any surprise expenses along the way and it’s always a good idea to have an emergency fund set aside.

Get Pre-Approved – Apply for pre-approval for a home loan so you have an idea of how much you can afford. Keep in mind that just because you have been approved for $250,000 doesn’t mean you have to look at houses that are listed at this price. This will put you at a greater financial risk and you don’t want to set your heart on houses that are out of your price range when it comes time to finally get the loan.

Hire a Realtor – It’s important to have someone on your side to give unbiased advice and someone to negotiate with the Sellers and the bank and have a professional guide you through the entire process.

Location – The actual house shouldn’t be the only aspect you are considering when buying. Location is also very important. Do you want to be close to work, schools, grocery stores or recreational facilities? Make sure to not only think about what kind of location you need right now but also what you may need in the future as well.

The home buying process will be different for everyone and a realtor is the best way to get unbiased professional advice. Owning a home is hard work but a very rewarding experience and I hope these tips help you in getting prepared to become a home owner!

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Are you thinking about listing your house come the end of summer? If so, make sure not to fall victim to these 5 common remodeling mistakes…

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There are many instances in one’s life such as children moving away, or too much maintenance – just to name a few, that may have you considering if you should downsize or not. Depending on your circumstances this might not be an easy decision to make. Here are some points to consider and helpful hints regarding some of the hurdles you may face that will surely make your decision an easier one!

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Although most homes being built today are already equipped with central air, there are still many homes around historic Brockville that do not have this component. Luckily, there are some crafty Do It Yourself ways to still keep cool without air conditioning or without running up your utility bill.

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