Nov 272012

Michael Wright is a consultant and former Chairperson of the Peel Advisory Working Group on Older Adult Housing. His consulting company, A-Team Strategies, places a strong focus on the shelter and financial needs of Canada’s 55+ population. I have taken a number of seminars with Mr. Wright and implemented many of his suggested strategies and tactics to help my clients make their transitions successful.

I’ve designed my weblog to provide helpful information to my current clients, their friends, and their families. A large part of my business each year focuses on helping those downsizing. These folks fall into one of two categories; ‘(Next to) Last Time Selling’ and ‘Last Time Selling.’ Each market has its own characteristics and requirements.

(Next to) Last Time Sellers

These are the Baby Boomers or Zoomers as the Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CARP) calls them. People in this group are probably living in 3,000 sf on two levels. The lot size is 50X100+. Their kids are in their late ’20′s and are out on their own. The mortgage is paid off and the home that was purchased 25 years ago for $150K will today sell for $750K. What is the next move and where? How will these folks re-purpose their furniture? How much equity will they ‘bank’ and how should it be invested?

Last Time Sellers

These folks have downsized once already. They live in a bungalow, a ‘condominiumized’ town home or apartment, or an adult lifestyle community, and have enjoyed the years since selling their large home where they brought up their children. As the years have passed, their care needs has increased.  Children-those in their 40′s and 50′s-are now helping their parents look for long term care facilities in their communities to meet their needs. What are the key considerations? What are the costs?

How The Blair Zilkey Team Helps

We have the practical experience that comes from helping homeowners in both markets downsize. We have access to a strong list of referral business partners to help you with all aspects of your move. We have the patience, compassion, and market knowledge to make these moves successful ones.

The Blair Zilkey Team-Insightful Advice, Leading Edge Implementation


Nov 222012

Once an offer has been accepted, there are only two ways that transaction can be cancelled. If it is a conditional offer, the Buyers may not waive or fulfill the conditions. Once the offer is firm, only a mutual release signed by both parties and the real estate brokerages that represent them can cancel the transaction.

If either party has remorse after the transaction has firmed up, it is essential for each party to engage their lawyers to get the proper legal advice on how to move forward. The party still that still wants to close the transaction-in this instance the buyer-may have already sold their own home, or at least incurred costs to prepare to sell. The buyer may choose to sue for damages incurred. The real estate brokerages can also rightfully expect that both parties close the transaction, and expect that their fees be paid.

Here is a great article from Toronto real estate lawyer Mark Weisleder that provides very good detail.

If you or someone you know has a real estate question or need, don’t hesitate to contact me. I’m here to help.

The Blair Zilkey Team-Insightful Advice, Leading Edge Implementation.


Nov 122012

A listing (representing the seller) realtor relies on a selling (representing the buyer) realtor to bring their serious buyer client to view and make an offer on their listing. The selling realtor will have qualified their buyer client and likely have entered a buyer’s representation agreement with them. Listing realtors need to ask detailed questions of buyers and their realtors who bring offers. Asking for a substantial deposit (say 5% of the purchase price) also helps weed out those buyers that may pose problems down the road. Despite the due diligence, what happens if a buyer wants to get out of a transaction?

Here is a great article  by Mark Weisleder, Toronto real estate lawyer. The best advice? Work with a listing realtor that is committed to finding the right buyer for your home.

The Blair Zilkey Team. Insightful Advice, Leading Edge Implementation.




Nov 092012

Two keys when listing;

  1. Your home becomes a product for sale;
  2. Buyers must be able to visualize themselves and their possessions in your home and they often do this within 5 minutes of viewing your product.

Realtors see many homes on a weekly basis-it’s part of the job! For this reason, realtors know there is a big difference between a home that has been properly prepared for sale and one that hasn’t. The implication? Realtors judge your home, and provide their opinion to their buyers.

So, how do you prepare your home to receive a favorable market opinion? Here are just a few suggestions.

First, declutter. This work can begin even before you engage a realtor to list your home. Reduce closet contents by 1/3. Remove all personal photos from side tables and walls. Clean out and organize the garage. Clean out and organize the basement (finished or not). Place excess furniture and items in the garage as you want the interior space to be open as possible. Remove knick knacks from counters and tables.

Second, chose a realtor that partners with a home stager/designer. I utilize Suzie Findlay of Divine Home Staging and Decor . A good home stager will complete a thorough walk-through of your home with your realtor. This process usually takes a couple of hours. The next day we receive a detailed room by room checklist of what stays, and what is stored. Any small renovations, lighting changes, and decluttering recommendations are outlined. My clients see great value in the staging process.

Give me a call to discuss further preparing your home for sale.

The Blair Zilkey Team-Insightful Advice, Leading Edge Implementation.