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Should You Invest in Buying a Fixer-Upper?

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Well, the answer is yes, but then it depends.  You should definitively buy and upper-fixer.  Sooner than later you will start to see the benefits.  Also, in the long run, you will see how these help you increase the value of your property.  This makes it all worth it as you then see it as a profitable investment and not a luxurious loss.

What Does Fixer-Upper Really Mean?

Let us begin by defining, or more like differentiating between a fixer-upper and a lost cause.  A fixer-upper is a house whose structure is intact but needs mostly some cosmetic touches and a little repair here and there.  Now, a house that is falling apart does not fit this definition.

If you are buying the second to the Monster’s House, then you definitively are in for a loss.  This is why you should ask your realtor to be honest with you about what is the real condition of the house.

Once you have decided that the house only requires mostly esthetical repairs, you are in for a win.  Most of the glam of a house is on the front porch or in the front face.  In other words, you should work in the landscaping.

Nick, who specializes in landscape design in Vancouver says that it’s not hard to improve the landscaping of an old house, even if it has been neglected.  It is all about making the right investments, sticking to the initial plan.

Pull out the Calculator

Now, this is the time in which you should do the math.  It is quite easy and the equation is simple.  Once you have made a thorough assessment of the house, you can make an estimate of the costs of renovation.  This renovation costs should include materials and labor.  Be tough on this one as you prefer costs to have a lowering tendency than the opposite.  Based on tendencies in prices in your neighborhood, get the most likely cost of the house once renovated and subtract the above cost.  Deduct some 5 or 10 percent for extras you might want to add, some mishaps, and inflation.

The value that is left is what you should pay for the house.  Make sure that the agreement includes an inspection, which will give you peace of mind to feel sure that you are either making a good investment or that you should just back down.

It all Depends

Now, as we mentioned earlier, buying an upper-fixer will become a good investment if you consider some things.  First, it is good if you input most of the labor.  If your plan is to hire expensive laborers to do the work for you then maybe you might just as well buy a ready-to-inhabit house and save yourself the pain.

There are some things that you will probably not be able to fix, such as plumbing or electricity, but then you should crunch the numbers to make it all fit into your estimate and budget.

Will this even have you make money?  This will depend on the area where you are buying, and this is pretty important.  Some areas are better fixer-upper than others.  Make sure you find a place that guarantees that properties have a positive capital gain.


It Has Never Been Easier to Compare Mortgage Rates with our New App!

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We cannot be more excited to offer you a new product!  There is so much we would like to say and share about the benefits of this great app that allows you to compare mortgage rates.  To say it is convenient is only an understatement.  Having the power of performing such feats at the palm of your hand is just beyond convenience, it is wonderful.

As we jump with excitement about this new tool, let us share with you all the wonderful things you can do with it.

A Nice Interphase

One important thing that people at the App Development Vancouver agency was to make a nice interphase.  They did that by using the results of studies on what is more engaging and resting for the eye at the same time.

As a result, we had a very intuitive and easy to navigate interphase.  Even details such as letter sizes, contrast, and light were taken into consideration.   We wanted it to look vibrant but without looking reckless.

A Convenient Menu

You will notice that the menu has a very convenient location for search, finding a home, and refinancing.   We made the most important tools to stand out for easier location.  Also at the bottom of all pages, you will find a calculator, which is great as you need to make calculations while searching for the best mortgage rates.

Updated Information

We can guarantee that the information on rates and availability is constantly updated through our website’s database.  This means that the values you are getting are real time.  No deception or outdated information.  Through this application, you can rest assured that you will get accurate information.

Highly functional

There are so many things you can get done with this application and that is our favorite part about it.  You first enter the information you need.  Once you click on search, you get a list of all the available mortgages in the area selected.

The application uses GPS location to offer you a personalized service.  You can also change this default location in case you are planning to move outside of town.   You can select between score or state when you need to make any changes on the search.

With a high functionality, this application is all you will need to properly compare mortgage rates.


A personalized experience based on your searches will be placed before you.  This will save you time as the database will help you find deals based on your search history.


We are moving forward towards allowing notifications.  Basically, you will input the information required and our constantly-updating database will send a notification to your phone everytime something relevant to you shows up.

How to Innovate in a Stale Business – What Mortgage Companies Must do to Stay Relevant

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We will split this piece into two parts.  Let´s first discuss how to make a rather stale business innovate.  But what do we mean by stale business? Well, it is one that has lost passion, popularity, and, therefore, profit.  This is the dangerous part.

So, before you even think of declaring bankruptcy, consider the following ideas on how to innovate in a rather stale business.  One piece of advice before starting:  do not let innovation go stale.

Automate your services

Needless to say, the success of a business lies in their ability to give people what they need and to convince them that they have such need.  Probably this is what your business is about. But has it stopped?

Here’s an approach.  Ask yourself if the service you are providing can be automated.  This is called productizing a service.

What could be done better?

The next question to ask yourself is what can be done better in your company.  How to meet new trends and processes in order for your business not to stay behind.  Making an honest evaluation, companies assign themselves a decent score based on where they are at right now.

Also, you are looking for those weak points in a service or a product in order to make it better.  Very few things are as frustrating.  So, is there a way this could be done better?

Always tap on your demographics before answering those questions.  Make your distributions accordingly.

People are valuable individuals not a number on your chest.

Clients are people

Don’t generalize with people. You cannot put them and their thoughts into one place.  Besides they want to interact with you.  They want to know what’s up with the products and/or services you offer.   Tap into their specific needs and don´t generalize them.

What should Mortage Company do?

Mortgage Companies are not necessarily the type of business people will get excited about.  Who wants to know who’s the next dead?  I mean, technically, people do not want to die.

So, businesses like Morgage Company should aim for entertaining and keep the audience engaged.  Creating content that is relevant and that will help you range, must be adopted as soon as possible.

Find ways to improve products and services.  Come up with new plans and get rid of the old style.  The aim should always be to provide these products and services in a different, more vibrant way.

Make your campaign effective, targeted and convincing people that they need your product or service.

If you need solid advice about how to present yourself to people, get some professional business help to go with it.





The benefits of interlocking paving stones on your house

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if you’re looking to increase the value pf your home and raise its curb appeal then you shouldn’t overlook the importance of a good driveway. The options for raising your home’s value are almost endless and a new driveway offers more than a few options. Traditional concrete asphalt offers the best durability but if you want something that is less of an eye sore then you should consider interlocking paving stones.

There are several benefits, other than raising curb appeal, to having an interlocking stone driveway. For the value and creativeness, they give you there is none better. Your driveway and home as a whole will look far more inviting and when you’re looking to sell the extra curb appeal definitely makes a difference. If you’ve done a lot of DIY projects around the home before it’s not too difficult to build it yourself. Unless though you have easy access to the tools and materials needed (and a lot of knowhow about choosing the right materials) you may be better off with a certified contractor like Centuria Masonry in Vancouver. Read on to see the benefits interlocking stones can have on your home.


Interlocking stones are some of the most durable materials you can buy for a driveway. Because they are made up of individual pieces they can take a lot of pressure. Any damaged stones can be easily replaced. With the right care, an interlocking stone driveway can last up to 30 years.

Low maintenance

Because of their interlocking nature, they set very fast when first installed. Usually, they can be used immediately on installation whereas regular concrete needs up to five days before it can set. If there is ever an issue than an individual stone can be easily replaced whereas regular concreate will need crack filling for any damage.


One of their biggest benefits is that they can be designed in any way you like. Whether it’s for your driveway or backyard patio you have a lot of choices in making it your own with a unique design. Every contractor will have different ideas on what materials and design you should use so choose carefully and find the design that suits your home best.


While the price of installing interlocking stones may strike you as expensive you are actually saving more in the long run. Since it doesn’t require the amount of maintenance as other options and last much longer you save more money in the longer run.


If you’re looking to sell your home in the future they can also make a great resale investment. Since they have such great durability the investment is well worth it. Having a well-designed patio or driveway will also push up your curb appeal which can make a big difference on the housing market.

Why we invested in a new web design

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A dear thank you for those who noticed our new face and congratulated us for it.  Our website is more intuitive and user-friendly.  It has more exciting features and we believe it has a better organization.  But these changes do not happen only because.  There is a good reason behind changes, other than “changes are good”.  Of course, we believe that changes are good, but today we would like to mention why we invested in a new web design.

We say we invested because if what you need is a highly professional work, then professional is what you should look for.  And it is not only about hiring a graphic designer but to be able to provide such designer with a clear idea of what it is that you need and want.  Notice how I made a distinction between “need” and “want”.  I learned along the way that these do not always meet.  So, you have to work on a good balance that will provide you with a stunning website that will make the investment be worth the effort.

Changes are exciting and motivational

We believe that making changes on our website gave us a fresh and new look.  We take advantage of this to lure more people into coming in.  This eventually translates into a better ROI.  We still hold proof that a website saves you time and money.  Because, even though it requires some investment, it is cheaper than hard copies of listings, fliers, and they have the ability to reach a larger audience.

An improved customer service

Customers now have a better customer experience.  It is not a mystery that people feel more comfortable buying from a website that has a strong presence. Changing the face of such website gives the idea of innovation.  This generates a sense of truth in clients.

Our improved and expanded FAQ section has received pretty good reviews as it includes more questions that clients might have.  Our favorite part is the integration of the fill out form where customers can ask direct questions and provide you with more potential clients.

We can target a larger audience

One important step that we believe was pretty important for us is the more professional look.  Instead of using a website template (which, interestingly, many people can tell), we were able to deliver what we wanted and clients needed to see.   A more professional-looking website means that we get a larger audience.

With a new look comes great responsibility (no reference intended, we promise).  Now we have the commitment of keeping ourselves updated.

Information update

We really needed to update our information.  Some things are not handled the way they used to and we had to make some adjustments to our policies.  We then thought this was a great opportunity to change the entire face of our website.

Thanks to Curve Vancouver, we were able to meet standards in web design.  We were able to deliver a fresh, interactive, and more intuitive face to our clients.  Better times are yet to come and we can’t wait!

Why a family dog makes a house a home

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Granted that you are a dog lover and you couldn´t do without a dog at your house, we would like to discuss with you how a dog turns a house into a home.  Also, we want to point out that your spouse, the kids, the grandma, the aunt or uncle, of course, will generate the awesome environment that will turn an otherwise dull space with windows into a warm love-filled home.

Now, going back to dogs, here are the main reasons why we believe that if you do not have a dog in your house, it might not be completely a home.

Dogs are fun!

Even those breeds that were not tailored to perform doggy antics can plant a grin on your face.  Having a dog around the house is always exciting!  You never know what will they be doing next and the expectation is always worth it.  So, you will never have a dull moment.  Even when they mess up that toilet paper.  Come on!

No need for an alarm clock

Dogs usually sleep around 10 hours a day.  The fact that this sleep is broken makes them the perfect morning alarm.  Just ask yourself this: when was the last time you woke up at 5 am to find your dog snoring on his bed?

You will never want to leave the house

For starters, you will feel heartbroken to leave them behind, especially knowing that you will be out from 9 to 5.  But then you will always have another good reason to look forward to getting back home.

They bring happiness and stress relief

Studies have shown that dog owners tend to rate happiness higher than those that do not have one.  This is because dogs bring this special spark to our lives that makes us forget about our issues.  Studies have also revealed that people who take their dog to work or have contact with one before and after work experience lower levels of stress.

Lifestyle Improvement

Since your dog needs exercise, you will get some as well.  Also, kids who grow up with dogs develop fewer dog allergies than kids who do not.

Loyalty at its best

How many of your friends are you certain would be willing to take a bullet for you?  In the case of your dog, you can be sure of it.  Your mutt will stay loyal to you no matter what.  So, you not only have a friend at home but also a protector.  That little fella will not only attack any intruder who breaks into your house, he will dive into the very crossfire with no regard for his own life if he has to protect you and your family.

Are you planning on bringing in a dog to your house? Get in touch with CasaDoodle to adopt your next best friend, an Australian Labradoodle.  We are sure you will love him and he will certainly love you back.

How updating your blinds and carpets can help you sell your house quicker

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Although this might seem like a no-brainer, there seems to be a large number of house-owners that do not realize this.  Now, if you are planning on selling your home, you must get in your prepping gear.  It is not about staging but more about improving your house to make it more sellable.

Besides this, people always get the best impression of a clean home, and especially of one that has been recently renovated.  So you get to take care of all the things in your house that need to be fixed.  The basics that need renovation before selling your home are the usual:  the walls, the floor, the porch, pipelines, carpets, and blinds.  Now, the walls are like the face of your house so they ‘d better be sitting pretty.  The floor is the base, the porch is the first impression, and the pipelines are always a headache if they are not working well.  Oh, and allow me to add another: your outer landscape.

In this article, we will mention why is it necessary to update your blinds and your carpets to sell your house faster than your neighbor.

The blinds

There are several ways in which you can update your blinds.  This does not mean to toss away the ones you already have and get yourself new ones.  If you are renovating your house before selling and changed the color of the rooms, you might find that the blinds no longer match.

If that is the case, you can make your blinds match your new color.  You can try pasting a fabric of your preferred color on them.  You could even come up with patterns to match your walls, such as dots, stripes, or any other custom decor.  Think of a large design across all blinds that will be visible only when they are closed.  If you keep this pattern, it will keep your home looking fresh and with no major expenses.

The carpet

When it comes to the carpet, it is very important that you keep it clean and in shape.  On your end, vacuum it frequently and avoid major spills as much as possible.  Remember that if you attempt to wash your carpets with water, they can grow mold if you fail to dry them completely.  You can also use other alternative methods that will not drench your carpet but wash it as effectively. This guide shows you how to clean your carpet without a vacuum

Get professional service for your carpets

Carpets definitively need a constant update.  This involves cleaning, vacuuming, and periodical washing.  In most cases, you will need professional service to schedule a periodic cleaning.  Get yourself the best area rug cleaning service in town and keep your home always looking at its best.  You will create the best impression on your potential clients.

Want to get the best return on your real estate? Invest in Real Estate photography

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Here´s the thing.  If you are serious about your real estate business, you cannot ignore real estate photography.  Of course, we are referring to professional photography.

Reasons why you cannot ignore real estate photography

Professional imagery has the ability to stay in the mind of a viewer for a long time.  Especially if it is one that called their attention.  Great photos influence many real estate decisions.  Let´s outline what are some other reasons why you should not ignore professional photography if you want to get the best return on your real estate.

  • Good photos will capture the attention of potential buyers and improve sales.
  • A professional photographer will apply techniques that take better advantage of lighting and composition to make the property look at its best.
  • Professional photography for real estate investors is no longer a luxury, it is a necessity. That, if they want to be a step ahead of the competition.
  • Studies have demonstrated more than once that the majority of clients have found photographs a great influential factor in the decision making of purchasing a property.
  • The bar has been set high for house hunting.  Buyers want to be impressed and this is not getting any easier.  They are mostly tech-savvy and are not easily pleased.  Give them a stunning image and you will be influencing their decision to buy your property.
  • Remember that the idea is to call the attention of clients.  The competition is stiff in real estate, so you need to lure clients to your listings and show them what it is that you have that others do not.  A good real estate photography goes a long way in showing your clients that you are serious about it.

Importance of real estate photography

Professional imagery of your properties will definitively guarantee that you make sales faster.  This is something that you should not overlook.  Amazing photos that are able to tell the goods in your property is what buyers are looking for.

The purpose of professional photography is to make your listings stand from the competition.  There is a cost involved but you will soon discover that the return makes the investment justifiable.

When hiring a professional to take the photos of your property, consider that styles are different and not every photographer is appropriate for you.  They all have their own style.  Browse over sample listings and decide what it is that you want your professional photographer to put out there.

Visual marketing is powerful and this is something you must be understanding of.  Placing your professional photographs in many sites will increase your chances of getting sales and referrals.

Selling Your Home? Get Rid of the Clutter by Renting Storage

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Are you planning to sell your home? But have you taken care of the clutter? If clutter is the problem, your best option is Los Rios Storage since it is the best storage in Kamloops. Taking care of clutter is the best way to increase the market value of your property because a cluttered property is an automatic turn off for potential buyers. All the stuff that they don’t need lying around, this can just easily change their mind and avoid purchasing your property.

For all your clutter and storage problem, you can count on self storage units to solve it. It’s like having an extra room in your house to store the not-so-important things that you’re not ready to throw away just yet. Although, you don’t really have to build an extra room—you just rent it. It’s cost effective because when you no longer need their services, you just end the contract.

Inventory Your Stuff Before Storage

It is important that you make a complete and thorough inventory of your things before you ship them to self storage. This will ensure that you have an idea about what items you have shipped away or which ones you decided to remain at home. Also, if you can’t find your stuff, you can just go back to your inventory to find out if it’s in the storage unit.

Having an inventory will also ensure that you and the storage facility are on the same page as regard your stuff. They have a list of the things that you entrust to them and you have a copy of that same list. When the time comes to end the contract of storage, you can just go back to the list and check if all the things are still present.

Check the Reputation of the Storage Facility

Since there are a lot of facilities offering storage units, it can be tough to choose who to entrust your things. One of the ways you can check is to ask around for their reputation in the locality that the company is located. This can mean talking to actual people but you can always go online and ask around forums.

You can also read online reviews. With the open Internet, there is always somebody out there who has tried the services of a storage company and would be willing to share his or her experience. This will give you a good idea about the company you want to entrust your things to.

Could you possibly have a relative or family member who has tried renting a storage unit before? Why not ask around? Who knows, the resource person that you need is just another cousin who just recently tried shipping out things to storage units. Ask about his or her experience. Was it satisfactory or mind blowing? Would he or she recommend the facility? How about you? Do you have an experience with a storage in Kamloops? Share us your experience by posting a comment below.

How A Great Backyard Improves The Value of your Home?

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There are a lot of landscaping ideas out there from adding trees to improving the wall design on your backyard. You can practically name dozens of ideas that would improve the appeal of your home which doubles as a hobby and an investment at the same time.

It’s not easy to own a decent home nowadays because the market has gone up and the large metropolitan population has occupied most of the good space. This is why if you already own a house treat it like a king could live in it.

Enjoy the space at the curb you own. Give it a little customization work so that it will have that personal touch showing visitors the identity of the home and the people that live in it. However, be careful when working on your backyard because too much individualized customization may ruin it.

This is especially important for homeowners looking to sell their house. Landscaping, if poorly executed, will make or break a deal for a potential buyer and your mortgage broker will have a hard time getting you a good deal on your appraisal. Even homeowner clubs come up with rules for too much landscaping because they’re trying to prevent owners who overdo it.

Market analysts have placed backyard landscaping design as having a significant impact on the value of a house when it goes up in the market. The added value goes even higher if the homeowner manages to make their already good landscaping work become a backyard that looks like a top level professional landscaping team had done it.

The prospect of increasing home value can be really enticing. However, you mustn’t do this to eventually ruin the house once you’re done. This is a bad idea waiting to happen and when it goes badly you won’t be able to ask for a refund. Remember to enjoy the whole process while keeping in mind that this is also an investment for the future.