Laura June and Ari Lahdekorpi RE/MAX Little Oak Realty

Lingering animal smells and fur can be a turn-off for would-be buyers. Be sure to remove all signs of your furry friends before showings. Here are some tips.

1. Holey backyard, Batman!
Does your dog bury more bones than they munch on? Start at the perimeter of your yard and circle inward to find your pup’s landscaping efforts and fill them in.

2. Scoop the ####
One misstep can ruin a buyer’s impression of your yard (and possibly home). Make sure your property is clear of any pet-related landmines.

3. Mend fences
Check your fencing, deck and porch for any marks from scratching or chewing. Most can be erased with elbow grease and a bit of sandpaper.

4. Stash the evidence
Collect your pet’s toys, bowls, beds and litter boxes and keep them out of sight. Hide pet photos for now, too.

5. De-scents-itize
Have a friend or Realtor come by to sniff out any animal scents you may have become accustomed to. Light candles, open windows or hire a professional carpet cleaning crew to deodorize your home.

6. Need a buffer?
Have claws scratched up your lovely hardwood floors? Ask your Realtor if professional resurfacing might be a good idea.

7. Don’t leave pets home during showings
Not only is there a chance they may bolt through an open door when strangers stroll around, there’s also a liability issue. It may be a good idea to temporarily relocate exotic critters, such as snakes or tarantulas.


**Article courtesy of RE/MAX of Western Canada**

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If you’re planning to sell your home, it’s probably crossed your mind to try to sell it yourself and save the
sales commission. But, there are some very good reasons why that would be a mistake.
According to housing industry experts at and, more homes listed by real
estate agents are sold than homes marketed by owners, and they tend to sell more quickly, with the least number of issues and for more money.

Homes listed by real estate professionals get more exposure and their sellers get more support. Real
estate professionals offer many advantages:

• They’re trained and licensed professionals.
• They have experience in your neighborhood and your market.
• They have oversight from brokers and state licensing officials.
• Their job is to advise you the best way to reach your goals.
• Their continuing education keeps them up-to-date on housing issues.
• They know how to present your home and deal with buyers.
• They know how and where to market properties.
• They know how to overcome typical snags that occur in all real estate transactions and closings.
• They understand state-required disclosures and look out for your best interests.
• They understand personal safety and security for your belongings during showings.
• They know the best resources to make transactions go more smoothly, from bankers to homestagers
to contractors.
• They have the most accurate data sources – the MLS, the only data repository that has the most upto-date
listing and sales information.
• They know how to negotiate.
• Their job is making real estate transactions successful.

When you market your own home, you have to make the time to do all the jobs a real estate professional
would do, and you’ll be competing against other sellers who have real estate professionals by their sides.
If you can’t leave work to show your home, or you feel it requires more knowledge and experience than
you have, you can’t go wrong by hiring a well-respected real estate professional.

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Back in the days of the cowboy movies, the story lines would often have the Native scouts look to the ground for tracks, smell the ashes of a campfire or place their ears to the rails to listen for a train.While I don't know about hoof prints, or how to smell a campfire for clues, I do know that a train track is a solid piece of metal sometimes as long as 1000 miles. A train can weigh 2-12 million pounds. this creates a lot of kinetic energy that will be felt many miles in both directions. This kinetic energy can also reveal if a train is coming closer or going away from you. Trains, and mass transit can also signal what is going to happen in the next few years in Surrey Real Estate.

Don Campbell, Senior Analyst with the Real Estate Investment Network (REIN) recently outlined some of his findings to a group of savvy real estate specialists. His prediction is that condos and townhouses with a high walk-score were going to provide investors with the greatest return over the next five to seven years. His reasons take into account the Millennial cohort, which presently is the same size as the Baby Boomer cohort, but will be over taking the Baby Boomers in influence and size in three years.



Millennials have some key traits that are important to consider as they become more of a force in our community. Firstly,they are technologically driven. Nothing appeals to this cohort more than fast Wi-Fi. Next, they are very social and like to collaborate. Millennials also feel that work-life balance and flexibility are very important to their life style choices. They are not interested in owning a car and they are very adventurous. All of these elements add up to an inevitable demand on flexibile housing close to amenities and mass transit. In other words...the next boom generation will be wanting community style housing within walking distance to their social hubs and transportation.


Metro Vancouver's population is projected to grow by one million people over the next three decades. Much of this growth will take place in Surrey and surrounding municipalities. The Surrey Rapid Transit Study identified a shortlist of four rapid transit options, all of which would meet the long-term needs of this growing wave of population.

They are:

1. Bus Rapid Transit on Fraser Highway, King George and 104th Ave.

2. Light Rail Transit on Fraser Highway, King George and 104th.

3. Rapid Rail Transit on Fraser Highway, King George and 104th.

The City of Surrey likes the idea of Light Rail Transit and would like to see construction begin in the city centre to Newton along King George with further expansion south in the future.


The time is right for savvy investment buyers to take hold of the opportunity the Millennial cohort will create in Surrey. Already the statistics are showing growth and increasing demand in condos along transit corridors. The data analysis service called Snapstats identified the "Buyer's best bets" as being between 100 - 300K up to 2 bedroom units in East Newton and Whalley. Their 13 month graph also shows that in January prices have jumped, and the trend is continuing in February according to REALTOR reports.


Listen to the sound on the tracks. A train is coming...driven by the Millennials, and that train is Light Rail Transit into community complexes within walking distance of social amenities and shopping. Now is the time for Investment Buyers to act in order to capitalize on the best return on investment opportunity we have seen in condos and townhouses in the Surrey market.

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For nothing is fixed forever and forever and forever, it is not fixed: the earth is always shifting, the light is always changing, the sea does not cease to grind down rock. Generations do not cease to be born, and we are responsible to them because we are the only witnesses they have. The sea rises, the light fails, lovers cling to each other, and children cling to us. The moment we cease to hold each other, the moment we break faith with one another, the sea engulfs us and the light goes out.

- James Baldwin-


This is the month of love. February brings kisses, hugs, chocolates and roses to lovers everywhere. The smiles and laughter are no artificial facade. It is a human condition...a need to love and be loved. Research into love and happiness in recent years challenge our most basic cultural, political and economic assumptions, and are transforming the field of psychology itself. The areas of Positive Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, Neuropsychology, Evolutionary Psychology, Clinical Psychology, Marriage and Family Counselling, are being impacted by the surprising results into what makes us happy in life.

Harvard University had the unique opportunity to study a group of it’s male students over their lifetimes. The study known as the “Grant Study” after it’s initial funding donor, studied a group of 268  young men beginning in the 1940s and followed their development. The study continues to this date. It is a remarkable piece of research into what factors create and maintain success and more importantly, happiness in a person’s life.

 Surprisingly, the study discovered that wealth , health, material possessions, stature in society or vocation , were not key factors in  a person’s long term happiness. The one element that created happiness in life was a good relationship with a partner… in other words, LOVE.

The impact of love in a person’s life was discovered to be  very significant. Men who had poor childhood relationships with their mothers were much more likely to develop dementia when old. Late in their professional lives, the men’s boyhood relationships with their mothers—but not with their fathers—were associated with effectiveness at work.

On the other hand, warm childhood relations with fathers correlated with lower rates of adult anxiety, greater enjoyment of vacations, and increased “life satisfaction” at age 75—whereas the warmth of childhood relationships with mothers had no significant bearing on life satisfaction at 75.

The researcher’s key takeaway, in his own words: “The seventy-five years and twenty million dollars expended on the Grant Study points … to a straightforward five-word conclusion:

‘Happiness is love. Full stop.’ ”

This February take the opportunity to build relationships with those around you. The research and the science confirm how important it is for all of us.


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Find out more information about real estate tips and real estate blogs in surrey and north delta. All brought to you by re/max real estate specialists Sheri Brown