Staging a house to sell

by Jodi Baker on July 16, 2016

Let’s debunk the myths for staging a house

Trying to sell your own home can be a risky gamble. Sure you’ll save on commissions but will you sell the home for as much or as quickly as you would working with expert realty professionals?

At the very least homeowners should understand some of the essential tips for staging their home so that they get the best results from the effort.

You don’t want the buyer feeling like it’s your home

Have you heard the advice: you want buyers feeling like it’s their home?

Kitchen photo of a home for sale

Sure, smart buyers will know/feel like the property has been staged, but much like a furniture showroom, you want to draw the buyer in, let them imagine living in this home.

Ditch the personal photos

The reason it’s widely said to get rid of all personal pictures is because the buyer will look at them. Why? Because it gives them clues as to your motivation to sell, and people are curious.

Example of a family photo

Do the buyers know you well enough? Usually the pictures people display tell us what stage of life you’re at, if the house is too big, too small etc.. When staging a home for sale you really want to remove unneeded distractions or hurdles.

Sell without the smell

Any odours, no matter how innocent, can distract a buyer. Last night’s dinner, spices, Fido the dog, or Fluffy the cat, it doesn’t matter how tasty or cute the source is if your buyers are distracted by the smell.

Cute cat and dog sleeping together

It should go without saying, but a smart seller will make sure to flush the toilets before showings and take out the garbage. Want to smell nice for the buyer? Consider applying your perfume/cologne outside.

How to sink the stink

If you do smoke in your home, or know that existing pet odour is prevalent, consider having the house ozone-ated. Ozone generators eat the source of the smell vs. trying to mask it with a stronger smell. There are even some chemical products that work in a similar fashion, leaving a lack of smell vs. a coverup.

dirty ashtray with cigarettes

Once the smell is under control, remember to smoke outside from now on, and try to keep the pets outside as much as possible.

Any buyer with sensitivities will be turned off if there are distracting odours.

Keep it clean

When selling your home, cleanliness is next to godliness. Nobody likes the idea of buying someone else’s dirt or mess, so take the time to present a mess free home to increase the chances of making the sale.

Clean kitchen with empty counter tops

Clearing counter tops is a great idea for reducing ugly visual distractions because it will make them look larger. You know that feeling you get when you clean up some old clutter?

‘I have so much room, I can do anything!’

Why not sell that good feeling to the prospective buyers? Every bit of value counts towards buyers making a positive decision on your home for sale.

Make sure that laundry & dishes are put away, make the bed, and try to correct any hint of mess or clutter. You can’t overdo this, so run the vac over the floors and wipe down hard surfaces.

If all else fails

Some homes just don’t sell themselves, even with a hardworking homeowner trying out the best advice to make the home appealing. This is where a professional team of realty experts will quickly pay for themselves.

Let the pros take care of the work

With the right team in your corner you know the home will sell for more, quicker, and with less stress and hassle than an owner sale. When it comes to experienced realty professionals in Victoria, the real-estate team at Geoff McLean & Associates are an excellent choice.


What defines a luxury property in Victoria BC?

by Jodi Baker on April 29, 2016

What is “Luxury”?

To define a concept like “luxury” is, a bit like like someone’s opinion of beauty, technically impossible because it is in the eye of the beholder. If you surveyed the local residents of Victoria BC & Vancouver Island, you would find that luxury is many different things to many different people.

Nautica Luxury Yacht - Digital Project defines luxury as:

a material object, service, etc., conducive to sumptuous living, usually a delicacy, elegance, or refinement of living rather than a necessity

The key here is need vs. want, but many of us live in situations that address our wants on top of our needs, are we living in luxury? Not really.

What makes a property part of the “Luxury” real estate market?

Since “Luxury” is a vague concept, a “luxury real estate market” is equally difficult to define in terms that relate to all realty sellers and buyers. This means that the “luxury real estate market” for Victoria and Vancouver Island cannot be easily defined as the opinion of luxury varies from person to person.

Luxury home for sale at 3195 Humber Rd.

Most people would agree that a large lot with private beach access is luxury, even without a 15,409 sq. foot 6 bedroom mansion. In fact the photo above is a $15 million dollar property listing in Victoria BC that would qualify as ‘luxury’ in most parts of the world!

The “Luxury” Real Estate market in Victoria BC

The average income for Victoria BC residents in our last national census was $84,500 which is a mere $300 over the national average for all Canadian cities. This sets the bar for “affluent” individuals, typically the group at the top 10% of the pay scale, at ~$200k annual household income or more. With this in mind, any property under $500,000 would struggle to be defined as a ‘luxury property’.

luxury properties in Victoria BC

So it’s no surprise that Victoria BC and Vancouver Island are a very inviting destination for affluent individuals looking for excellent value in luxury real estate.

Work with local realty experts

With over 15 years of local Victoria BC experience working with both buyers & property owners, Geoff McLean and Associates is a reliable source of luxury real estate knowledge. Geoff’s team of realtors will work hard for you to ensure a smooth transaction without the headaches and pitfalls that are common in large real estate transactions.


VREB Statistics for 2014/2015

by Geoff McLean February 5, 2016

The Victoria Real Estate Board (VREB) is an association of ~1,200 local Vancouver Island/Gulf Island REALTORS® with hands-on knowledge of the local real estate market in the Greater Victoria area. VREB Statistics for 2014/2015 in PDF Origin of VREB Buyers 2014/2015 Origin of Canadian VREB Buyers 2014/2015 Origin of VREB Buyers Outside of Canada 2014/2015 […]

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Log Homes in Victoria BC

by Geoff McLean December 4, 2015

Vancouver Island is home to the mighty douglas fir, a tree that makes an excellent log for building custom homes. The reddish hues of this tree are beautiful but the straight grains, tight growth rings, and resistance to mold/fungus are the most prized attributes of this species of tree.Local douglas fir logs are carefully selected […]

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Female Veterans of Canada

by Jodi Baker November 10, 2015

Victoria BC is well known for having a largely female population, we recently mentioned that Victoria took the #1 spot nationwide for the title of ‘Best City in Canada for Women‘. Female Canadian Veterans While we identify with women living in Victoria, when it comes to Canadian veterans, even in this city, the stereotype is […]

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Moving from Calgary to Victoria BC

by Geoff McLean September 28, 2015

The Gas Prices are Nice But… Heck even the gas prices in Calgary are getting a second glance with an 11c per litre price jump on Monday the 28th that’s officially ruining the local optimism that comes with a sub $1/litre gas. Price Trends for Calgary Calgary Gas Prices Provided by   Calgary isn’t a frustrating/complex city, […]

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Moving from Vancouver to Victoria BC

by Geoff McLean September 4, 2015

Vancouver is a Wonderful City … But! Please don’t get the wrong idea! Vancouver wins plenty of awards and earns more than it’s fair share of international acclaim for doing many things well including hosting events like the Olympics/International Expos/World Cup/etc.. Heck, in most areas where Victoria is #1 in Canada/Internationally Vancouver is usually close […]

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Economic Analysis of BC – August 2015

by Geoff McLean September 3, 2015

Our friends over at Central1 Credit Union have posted an updated Economic Analysis of British Columbia report for August 2015. The full report is available in PDF format for easy printing/review: Economic Analysis of British Columbia – Volume 35 • Issue 4 • August 2015 | ISSN: 0834-3980 With economic forecasts that run until 2017 […]

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Victoria: Best City in Canada for Women

by Jodi Baker July 16, 2015

Canada is often regarded as one of the best countries in the world for outstanding natural beauty, quality of living, career opportunities, and many more reasons. This week, on the 16th on July, Kate McInturff, a senior researcher at the Canadian Center for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) published an extensive report comparing the top Canadian cities […]

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Early Summer Events in Victoria for 2015

by Jodi Baker June 9, 2015

Living in Victoria can be very distracting during the summer months because there’s just so much going on. Even when the weather is wet we tend to find plenty of activities or just ignore it with some rain gear. Early Summer Events June 17-21: Historical Timeline at Fort Rodd HillBring the kids and take a […]

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