New Year’s Resolutions for new homeowners

If you have just purchased a home, you might have big ideas on how to make the space your own. When you bought your home, you likely saw great potential but putting a plan into action can be overwhelming. Check out these new year’s resolutions for your home that will help you hit the ground running in 2022.

Make a resolution to:

Create a list of quick, inexpensive fixes and get those done first. You might not have the budget to make your home the way you want it on day one, but you will be surprised what small updates can do whether it is a new exterior house number or modernizing the hardware on cabinet doors.    

Spend your time and effort on the space that will make you the most happy. If time and money are limited after your purchase, focus your efforts where they will have the biggest impact. A new kitchen, living room or backyard are all worthy projects but which one will you enjoy the most? Start there.

Make your home more functional. The project that might bring you the most joy might not be a room at all. What worked for the previous owners, might not work for you. If you haven’t done a construction project before, don’t feel overwhelmed. Get quotes and learn more about the project first. You can decide if or when it goes ahead on your timeline.

Invest in art to find your style and create interesting spaces. Yes, art can be expensive but if you find something you love, it can bring you joy every time you walk into the room. However, art does not need to cost a lot to transform a space. Sourcing pieces from local artists, estate auctions and online art dealers are great places to start your search.    

Make your home more energy efficient. This resolution will put money back in your wallet over time and keep your home cozy in the winter. If you don’t know where to start, look for drafts around windows or exterior doors. You can also check out this blog.

Join the community and explore your neighbourhood. COVID-19 has made it much more difficult to meet your neighbours, but social media has filled the gap. Joining neighbourhood social media groups will allow you to ask neighbours about finding local contractors and the best restaurants as well as issues that impact your community.

How to keep your plants happy and healthy this winter

Are you a plant lover like me? My kids tell me I have way too many…is there such a thing? Here are some helpful tips when caring for your plants this winter.

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Woman smiling, carrying plant toward a window as sunlight spills in

Winters in Canada can be cold and dark, and just like us, our delicate plants – indoor and outdoor plants alike – need some special attention this time of year. So, show your plants a little TLC this winter by giving them a warm, dry place to wait out the cold weather until spring. 

Follow this list of helpful tips to keep your plants happy and healthy through the winter months.

  • Keep it bright. Expose your plants to as much sunlight as possible by keeping them by a window. Remember, days are shorter in winter so they need all the natural light they can get. If you see your plants struggling, you may need to move them to maximize exposure.
  • Keep them warm. Avoid cold and drafty areas of the house where your plants risk getting frostbite. If it gets too cold overnight, you may need to move your plants away from the window.
  • Avoid extreme heat. If placed near a heater or a fireplace, your plants can dry out. It’s best to keep them in a room where the temperature doesn’t fluctuate too much. If necessary, run a humidifier to add moisture back into the air. 
  • Cut down on water. Most plants require less hydration in the winter as they enter a hibernation period. The same rule applies for fertilization – feel free to skip the fertilizer for healthy plants, or dilute with water for those that need a little extra help. 
  • Avoid the urge to repot your plants. They will not be growing much during the winter months, and it’s best to keep them in a stable environment until spring.
  • Clean and prune. Gently wipe down the leaves and trim them back before bringing outdoor plants in for the season.

Top 10 tips for selling your home in the winter

Snowman with plaid hat and scarf outside a home in winter

The common notion that spring is a better time to sell than winter is being challenged by today’s hot seller’s market conditions. A recent Royal LePage survey found that 79% of real estate professionals say they would advise their clients to sell this winter, rather than wait until spring; significantly higher than the 64% who say they would have given that advice prior to the pandemic citing that current demand is outstripping supply in another year of unusual winter market activity.  

If you are considering listing your home this winter season, be sure to review our top ten tips for preparing your home for a winter sale!

  1. Include both winter and summer photographs of your home in the listing so prospective buyers can better imagine themselves in the property all year round;
  2. Clear a path to the front door and pathways around the home. Make sure the walkway is free of snow and ice; 
  3. Turn up the heat in your home to a comfortable temperature;
  4. Seal up any drafts in windows and doors;
  5. Provide shoe covers or slippers, or lay down a large mat, so visitors don’t leave your floors looking messy for the next appointment. Don’t forget to remove winter boots and coats from your hall to make the area look bigger and so that visitors have a clear space to enter;
  6. Up your winter curb appeal: Upgrade your mailbox and house number; add winter floral arrangements with hearty outdoor perennial planters
  7. As the days are shorter and it gets dark earlier, keep outdoor lights on during showings; 
  8. Whenever possible, show your home during the daytime and let lots of natural light inside;
  9. Make the front door and entrance look warm and welcoming with seasonal decor;
  10. And, showcase how outdoor spaces can be enjoyed even in the colder months. Be sure to clear off outdoor furniture that can be used in winter.

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BEST Cleaning tips EVER!!

If you have worked with me I have most likely told to you about GO CLEAN CO because I’m OBSESSED. Honestly, these people are amazing. They have sections on their page for EVERYTHING from ovens, clothing, front loading washing machines (GROSS), hair, BBQ…the list goes on! Follow them on Instagram #cleaningarmy, bleachpraylove.com

Lesley’s Corner – April 2020

What an incredible few months it has been! I think its fair to say that our worlds have been rocked with COVID-19 making its way to Manitoba.

My family was impacted in a number of ways; both of my daughters faced having their sports getting cancelled, school cancellations and of course – the housing market.

One constant for our family has been each other. Relying on family and close friends to be by your side through something like a pandemic is about the only thing that can bring some comfort to an incredibly stressful situation.

Looking forward (and I always enjoy looking forward) we will all get through this very trying time! I am excited to continue my conversations with many of you who are looking to buy or sell a home this summer and look forward helping you in this exciting journey.

As you reflect on what impact COVID-19 will have on your family, please stay safe, healthy and try to make the best of this situation!

Talk soon,

Lesley Kondratuk