Fall Cleanup
 
 
 

When it comes to fall yard and garden cleanup, we have evolved our thinking. It’s not necessary to hack everything down, but that doesn’t mean do nothing. Let’s cleanup our yards the right way.

With cooler weather and fewer insects, it’s also easier to do this work in autumn, not during freezing temperatures. So let’s get going …

1. REMOVING LAYERS OF LEAVES

Don’t be a perfectionist. Some leaf litter is natural and allows our pollinators (butterflies, ladybugs, etc.) to nestle to overwinter. And the more insects you have, the more feathered friends can feast, too. 

However, you shouldn’t leave thick layers of leaves on your lawn; this blocks sunlight and air from reaching your grass but also encourage disease.

 

If your lawn is being buried, the lack of light and the trapped moisture can put the grass into a weakened state to survive yet another winter.

Of course, get rid of any fallen leaves that have disease (eq., Maple black spot disease) or the spores will come out in the spring and reinfect the emerging leaves.

Also, make sure leaves don’t pile up too thickly over the crowns of your plants. 

See more about fall leaf cleanup.

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We like to use a mulching mower or leaf blower with a mulching feature to shred leaves. Make sure your mower is aggressive enough to chop leaves into small enough bits that they can sift past the grass to drop to the ground. It is easier to get dry leaves to shatter into pieces than wet clumps, so it is important to choose your day.

Using shredded leaves to feed the compost file and also as mulch on garden beds to feed earthworms, beneficial microbes, and the soil. What doesn’t decompose over winter can be cleaned up in spring and the volume of leaves will be greatly reduced. Remember: Leaves are garden gold!  See more about the value of leaves.

 

De-Thatch and Possibly Aerate

If you do have a lawn, de-thatch in the fall.  Thatch is that yellowish-brown grass that lies underneath the living, green grass. It’s important to avoid thatch buildup, as it keeps nutrients and water from filtering down to the grass’s roots. Vigorously rake out the thatch on cool-season grasses in the early fall. This gives the grass time to recover from the stress of being de-thatched. If you have serious soil compaction, you also may need to aerate your lawn, which requires renting a lawn aerator from a home improvement store to create holes that will deliver oxygen, water, and nutrients into your soil. 

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2. FERTILIZE AND WEED YOUR LAWN

Early autumn is the best time to lightly fertilize your lawn to promote root growth and prepare it for the next growing season. Don’t wait until spring, as the fertilizer will be less effective then. In the fall, your grass needs to recover from the summer heat and can best use the nutrients provided by a fertilizer. Use a turf builder or fertilizer meant for winterizing lawns (with a low middle number for NPK such as 32-0-10). 

If you seed a lawn, you certainly want the seeds to thrive without competition for nutrients from troublemaking perennial broadleaf weeds. Fall is the best time to address this issue; don’t wait until spring, when weeds emerge. Perennial broadleaf weeds are transporting food (carbohydrates) from their foliage to their roots in preparation for winter. Visit your local garden center to find out about organic and traditional weed solutions.

3. CHECK THE SOIL PH OF YOUR LAWN

Autumn is a great time to ensure that your lawn will be healthy and happy next year. Get a soil test to see if your soil is lacking in nutrients or has a pH that isn’t ideal for growing the type of grass that you have. Learn more about soil health.

Contact your local Cooperative Extension, which typically provides free or low-cost soil tests, or purchase a test kit from your local home improvement store or garden center. If the test shows excessive acidity, you’ll want to apply lime. If your soil is too alkaline, you’ll apply sulfur. See how to test your soil

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4. OVERSEED LAWN GRASSES

It’s also a good time to overseed your lawn so that it’s thicker and lusher next season. To overseed, first cut your grass shorter than usual, then remove the grass clippings and lightly spread seed across the entire lawn with a fertilizer spreader, following instructions on the grass seed bag for overseeding. Keep lightly watered until new growth is at least 3 inches tall.

5. SAVE SEEDS AND POLLINATORS

If you are busy deadheading your flowers, stop! Take a look at the seed heads that you are cutting off. Instead of removing these seed heads, let some of them ripen until they turn brown and split open. These seed capsules are like salt shakers full of tiny seeds. Scatter the seeds anywhere that you would like them to grow or just let them drop where they are. And leave some dried seed heads for the birds, too! Learn more about 20 self-sowing flowers.

Also, leave many of your flowers and plants through the winter for the pollinators. Native bees will “hibernate” in the hollow stem of a bee balm plant, butterflies will overwinter in a chrysalis hanging from a dead plant, birds will flit around spent sunflowers, and caterpillars will roll into the seed pod of milkweed plant.

 

The only plants we regularly cut back every year are bearded iris because the iris borers overwinter in/on the foliage. Everything else is left standing.

Of course, cut back any foliage that is diseased. For example, peonies with botrytis or plant foliage with powdery mildew. It’s not cure-all but may cut down on issues next year.  (Rotating your plants is also wise since many fungal diseases are soil-borne.)

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In the vegetable garden, you can also collect any dried seeds from open-pollinated flowers and veggies to sow next year. See how to save flower and vegetable seeds for replanting.

Another option is to dry some of those flowers, seed heads, and herbs, especially from plants like hydrangea and yarrow. Then you can enjoy the beautiful dried blooms indoors during the winter. See how to dry flowers.

 

Finally, fall is a good time to take small cuttings of plants to overwinter before transplanting them outdoors in the spring. We especially love growing herbs indoors. See how to start herbs from cuttings.

6. WINTERIZE GARDEN BEDS

Clean up your vegetable beds. While ornamental beds can show off their winter beauty, veggie beds need to be cleaned up .

It’s especially important to pull out any pest-infested vegetable plants or plants that were plagued by a fungal disease, like powdery mildew or blight. 

Some gardeners will leave even  plants that aren’t diseased because they provide overwintering sites for predatory beneficial insects. We leave that to your discretion. In some climates, having very wet foliage simply attracts white mold and disease.

 

If you do have diseased flower or vegetable plants, remove them and either burn them, discard them, or bury them where they won’t see the light of day for at least a year.

In the flower garden, wait until the first hard, killing frost and remove the diseased plant material while it is still limp and does not crumble. This will help with disease control for next season.

Do not compost diseased plants, such as peony leaves infected with powdery mildew, as diseases may persist in your compost pile.

If perennials are completely buried, it will be necessary to rake or broom and knock the leaves off the tops of plants. 

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We like to put a thin layer of leaves over smaller garden beds (or, plant a cover crop for large beds) to protect the topsoil and enrich the soil. Just be careful to use only a thin layer of leaves; you don’t want to create a habitat for diseases and pests.

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Some gardeners like to enrich their garden beds with compost in the fall. Others save their composting for spring, as it can be an expensive material. If you do have extra compost to add in the fall, do so, as it will help out the earthworms that work it into the soil. This may be preferable to tilling, which can expose weed seeds.

Finally, many gardeners will cover their beds with old carpet, tarp, or landscape fabric to ensure that no sunlight gets to those weed seeds and that you have a clean slate with which to work come spring! 

 

7. CLEAN YOUR GUTTERS

Ensure that your gutters are clear of fall leaves, especially before the snow falls. Otherwise, you may have bigger problems as ice dams form. Remove leaves around your house’s foundation, too, and in other places that invite rotting and mold. The easiest way to clear out blockages is to use a leaf blower with a rain gutter attachment.

8. COMPOST YOUR LEAVES

The most efficient way to use leftover leaves is to add them to a compost pile—along with your grass clippings, vegetable waste, annual weeds, straw, and other organic matter. Once decomposed, the compost makes wonderful, free, nutrient-rich plant food. See how to get your compost heap cooking.

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Before the snows fall, turn your compost and cover your compost bin with tarp so that all that work is stored for spring!

You can also create leaf mold with leaves. Unlike compost, a mix of different organic matter, leaf mold is made purely of decomposing leaves. See how to make leaf mold.

9. WINTERIZE TREES AND SHRUBS

In regions with heavy snow, you want to give your trees and shrubs the best chance of surviving.

Do not prune trees and shrubs. Even if they look a little overgrown, wait until next spring. Pruning involves removing tissue and opening wounds in a plant that still has the winter to contend with. The injuries have no time to heal

and could weaken or kill the shrub or tree. Pruning also stimulates a tree or shrub to attempt to grow and any new growth produced in the fall is likely to be killed because it has not had any time to harden off or become woodier.

 

Cover small trees and deciduous shrubs with a wooden structure to protect them from heavy snow. Or, circle them with a cylinder of chicken wire fencing and fill in the space between the tree and the fence with straw or leaves. Or, drive stakes into the ground at four corners around the plant and wrap burlap or heavy plastic around the stakes, securing it at the top, center, and bottom with twine.

For young fruit trees, it’s often a good idea to wrap the lower trunk of the tree with a pestproof tree wrap, which will prevent mice and voles from gnawing on the tree’s bark during the winter.

Slow down any watering in early fall; once the trees’ leaves have dropped (but before the ground freezes), give all trees and shrubs a deep watering, covering the entire canopy area. 


10. CLEAN YOUR TOOLS

Last but not least, late autumn is the best time to clean your tools! If you have a lawn mower, drain out the gas. Turn off the water for the hose. Clean, sand, and oil your garden tools before storing them for the winter.

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Clean out cold frames if you use them for a head start on spring vegetable growing. Learn more about building a cold frame.

While you’re cleaning, make sure that those bird feeders are cleaned up and ready for winter use!

See more about feeding garden birds in winter.

AND THAT’S IT!

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Back to school time is always a big transition, not only for children but for parents.


While children are filled with excitement and first-day jitters, parents are filled with thoughts of “Am I prepared enough?” To help eliminate these thoughts, and help you and your child prepare for the new school year, all you need is a little organization and forethought. Here are 10 back to school tips to kick-start the new year and get you prepared for a fresh start.


1. Get back into your sleep routine. To help eradicate those stressful school mornings, set up a regular bedtime and morning time routine to help prepare your child for school. Begin your usual school sleep routine about a week or so before school starts.

2. Shop for school supplies together. To get your child excited about starting a new grade, shop for supplies together. Allow them to pick out their own backpack, lunchbox, etc. This is a great way to give them a little bit of responsibility too!

3. Re-establish school routines. Have your child practice getting back into the rhythm of their daily school routine. You can do this by having them wake up at the same time every day, and eat around the same time they would at school. About a week or so before school starts, plan a few outside activities where your child will have to leave and come home around the same time they would if they were in school. This will help them be rested and ready for the

4. Set up a homework station. Sit down with your child and together designate a time and place where he can do his homework each day. This can be somewhere quiet like in the den, or even in the kitchen while you are preparing dinner. Make sure to choose a time where you are available in case your child needs your help.

5. Prepare for the unexpected. Working parents know that it can be difficult to find a sitter when your child is sick. Before school even begins, it’s a good idea to have a sitter already lined up in case you get that phone call home from the nurse saying your child is ill.

6. Make an after-school game plan. Make a plan for where your child will go after school lets out for the day. Depending upon the age of your child, figure out if they will go to a neighbor’s house, an afterschool program, or be allowed to stay home by themselves. This will help eliminate any confusion during the first few weeks.

7. Turn off the TV and video games. For a lot of children summertime is filled with endless video games and TV programs. Children are usually in shock when they begin school and realize that six hours of their day is going to spent learning and not playing games and watching TV. Ease your child into the learning process by turning off the electrics and encouraging them to read or play quietly.

8. Review school material and information. For most parents, schools send home a packet with a ton of information regarding their child’s new teacher, important dates to remember, emergency forms, and transportation routines. Make sure that you read through this information carefully, and mark down all important dates on your calendar.

9. Get organized. The best way to prepare for back to school time is to be organized. With school comes a massive amount of paperwork which can consume your household. Designate a spot in your house for homework, permission slips, and any other school-related papers. This can help eliminate all of that paper clutter and make your life less stressful.

10. Get your child’s yearly checkup. School and germs go hand in hand, so it’s best to get your child’s yearly checkup before school even starts. Get any required vaccinations and ask your pediatrician the best ways your child can stay healthy throughout the school year.

Through preparation and organization, you can ensure that your child will have a smooth transition to the start of the new school year. By doing so, you and your child can enjoy the rest of your summer break.


How do you prepare your child for going back to school? Share with us in the comment section below,


would love to hear your thoughts.

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New York, London and Shanghai are among the cities seeing falling house prices these days.

 
An aerial view of fog descending on homes in West Vancouver.

It’s hard to lose money in real estate these days, almost anywhere, but Vancouver is among an elite group of cities where the wealthy are doing just that.

The city, once an unstoppable juggernaut of foreign money and rising prices, has ranked at the bottom of a list of the world’s hottest luxury housing markets for the fourth quarter in a row.

That means Vancouver has now spent a year as the world’s weakest luxury market in Knight Frank’s ranking of 46 major world cities. Luxury house prices fell by 13.6 per cent over the past year, the real estate agency said.

Toronto ranked 13th, with prices up 3.8 per cent in a year. Those two are the only Canadian cities on the list.

HUFFPOST CANADA

Meanwhile, the new ranking champion of luxury housing is Berlin, where luxury homes jumped 12.7 per cent in price over the past year, despite a slowing economy in Germany.

There’s no cutoff for what counts as “luxury” housing; rather, Knight Frank defines it as the top 5 per cent of a housing market.

 

Vancouver spent a few years at the top of the ranking, before it began a decline in 2016 after British Columbia introduced a 15-per-cent foreign buyers’ tax for Vancouver and surrounding areas, which was later bumped up to 20 per cent.

Ontario introduced a similar 15-per-cent tax for the Toronto area a year later, and the city’s luxury market slid in the rankings after that measure came into place.

Watch: What’s behind Canada’s skyrocketing rents, and what we can do about it. Story continues below.

 
 


But Vancouver’s slide has been far more dramatic. “Whilst both operate a foreign buyer tax, Vancouver has seen a flurry of additional measures aimed at reducing speculation and curbing price inflation,” Knight Frank noted in its report.

That includes a controversial empty-homes tax, which charges one per cent of a home’s assessed value for every year, or majority part of a year, that it’s unoccupied.

Still, Vancouver is in good company among the cities whose luxury housing markets are tanking. Prices are falling in New York, London, Shanghai and Istanbul, among others, the ranking showed.

 

Market observers say a decade of low interest rates helped push up the price of luxury housing around the world, but that process is now running out of steam.

Also, in our globalized economy, money from all around the world affects local house prices, and that’s especially true at the top end of the market. Increasingly, housing slowdowns are synchronized around the world.

But Vancouver’s housing market is showing signs of stabilizing, with sales up 24 per cent in July, compared to the same month a year earlier. Some observers say they’re seeing a pick-up in interest from foreign buyers, particularly among Hong Kong residents worried about the city’s escalating protests.

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I have sold a property at 5 1935 MANNING AVE in Port Coquitlam.
Almost new! Save the GST! No rental restrictions, centrally located, close to transit, all level schools & shopping. Spacious 1632sq.ft home with 3 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms formal living room, dining room & family room. Great deck off kitchen for BBQs, fully fenced back yard plus a single garage & parking for second car. Custom high end design with 9' ceilings, quartz counter tops, iron railing, main floor bath, high end laminate flooring & carpet, porcelain tiles & closet organizers. Two master bedrooms with en suite baths up, downstairs you have a 3rd bedroom, bathroom & family room! Built in 2015 with brick & hardy plank exterior, fully rain screened with remainder of the New Home Warranty. 2018 BC Assessment is $800,000 Priced $100K below! Perfect home to move into or for investment!
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I have listed a new property at 14 2139 PRAIRIE AVE in Port Coquitlam.
Lots of natural light to enjoy in this end unit townhome in Westmount Park. The expansive open floor plan on main enjoys vinyl plank laminate, crown molding & a contemporary paint palette. Perfect for entertaining; kitchen with quartz breakfast bar & large island w/extra seating, adjacent dining rm & living rm with access to the covered sundeck that has plenty of room for your patio set & BBQ, as well as stairs to the fenced yard. Up are 3 good sized bdrms, 2 baths & laundry. Master with walk-in closet & 4 piece ensuite. Lower floor with powder rm, garage access & a flex room that can be used as the 4th bdrm or a family room. Flex room has access to the fenced yard & covered patio. Quiet part of the complex, walk to Kwaykwitlam Middle School, parks & transit. Open Saturday Aug 24, 2-4 pm
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Please visit our Open House at 14 2139 PRAIRIE AVE in Port Coquitlam.
Open House on Saturday, August 24, 2019 2:00PM - 4:00PM
Lots of natural light to enjoy in this end unit townhome in Westmount Park. The expansive open floor plan on main enjoys vinyl plank laminate, crown molding & a contemporary paint palette. Perfect for entertaining; kitchen with quartz breakfast bar & large island w/extra seating, adjacent dining rm & living rm with access to the covered sundeck that has plenty of room for your patio set & BBQ, as well as stairs to the fenced yard. Up are 3 good sized bdrms, 2 baths & laundry. Master with walk-in closet & 4 piece ensuite. Lower floor with powder rm, garage access & a flex room that can be used as the 4th bdrm or a family room. Flex room has access to the fenced yard & covered patio. Quiet part of the complex, walk to Kwaykwitlam Middle School, parks & transit. Open Saturday Aug 24, 2-4 pm
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Please visit our Open House at 103 CEDARWOOD DR in Port Moody.
Open House on Sunday, August 11, 2019 1:00PM - 3:00PM
Priced to Sell! This home is ready for the summer with recently added A/C. Bright 4 bedroom & 3 bath situated on HUGE lot in Heritage Woods! Formal living room w/ gas F/P overlooks the quiet cul-de-sac. Enjoy Southwest views of Burnaby Mountain from the dining room, kitchen, Mst Bdrm family rm & deck. Huge master suite w/ spacious W/I closet & spa inspired ensuite. 3 other big bdrms & bath complete the upper floor. Basement includes finished rec room, flex room & storage. Unfinished area with lots of potential; possible suite with separate entry, patio & yard - loads of possibilities! Close to all levels of schools; short walk to Heritage Woods Secondary, one of the top rated high schools in the Tri Cities, Aspenwood Elementary & Eagle Mtn Middle. Close to parks & public transit
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Please visit our Open House at 231 2108 ROWLAND ST in Port Coquitlam.
Open House on Saturday, August 10, 2019 1:00PM - 3:00PM
Bright and airy town home in a walkable, family friendly neighborhood. This 3 bdrm, 3 bath home enjoys an open floor plan on the main with a flex space, powder room and BBQ patio. Kitchen with granite counters, built in microwave and new dishwasher. Second floor with 2 bedrooms, den, laundry & another flex area for a computer space or play area. Large master bedroom on the top floor with vaulted ceilings, walk in closet and a 5 piece ensuite. Top floor also enjoys a good sized west facing deck. Lots of natural light from the expansive windows & high ceilings throughout the home. Walk to Riverside High, Gates Park, the downtown shops and all the diverse activities that PoCo has to offer. Steps from transit and a short walk to the WC Express.
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I have listed a new property at 231 2108 ROWLAND ST in Port Coquitlam.
Bright and airy town home in a walkable, family friendly neighborhood. This 3 bdrm, 3 bath home enjoys an open floor plan on the main with a flex space, powder room and BBQ patio. Kitchen with granite counters, built in microwave and new dishwasher. Second floor with 2 bedrooms, den, laundry & another flex area for a computer space or play area. Large master bedroom on the top floor with vaulted ceilings, walk in closet and a 5 piece ensuite. Top floor also enjoys a good sized west facing deck. Lots of natural light from the expansive windows & high ceilings throughout the home. Walk to Riverside High, Gates Park, the downtown shops and all the diverse activities that PoCo has to offer. Steps from transit and a short walk to the WC Express.
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I have listed a new property at 3982 PANDORA ST in Burnaby.
Exceptional Vancouver Heights neighborhood of immaculate properties for this LOVELY family home. Great curb appeal with wrought iron fenced front yard, split entry & bright basement with a 2 BDRM mortgage helper. Engineered hardwood and tile throughout the main kitchen with granite counters, center island & open to the adjacent dining room. Huge deck has access from both kitchen and dining room, is partially covered and enjoys southern exposure. 3 BDRMS on the main including a master with ensuite and walk in closet. Down is rec rm, 2 bdrm suite with separate entry and huge laundry room with sink. DETACHED double GARAGE off the LANE w/ 100 amp service and roughed in plumbing! BONUS attached double with open parking too. Perfect location in The HEIGHTS, steps to everything!
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342 E 23rd
 

The most-expensive home sold in B.C. went in a week for more than its asking price

 

BCBusiness’s weekly snapshot of what’s selling around the province

The most-expensive property sold in B.C. last week was a new, 3,300-square-foot, custom-built home in the Main Street area of East Vancouver. Listed at $2.88-million, it went for $2.91 million, $22,000 higher than list price, after being on the market for only seven days.

The second-priciest sale, a Naramata Village detached residence in the South Okanagan, went for $100,000 less than the Vancouver property after sitting on the market for 91 days. A Victoria home fetched almost the same amount and 102 percent of the asking price after 49 days.

According to MLS figures analyzed by Vancouver-based Zolo Realty for BCBusiness, there were 47 properties sold in B.C. last week that could be classified as the highest- or lowest-priced condo, townhouse or single-family house for each of the province’s real estate boards.

“Turns out 19 percent sold for either ask or more than asking price,” says Zolo director of content Romana King. “Another 66 percent of properties sold for just below—up to 9.07 percent less than—list price.”

See below for details: list and sold prices, days on market, size of home and property.

Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver

Highest single family
Address: 342 East 23rd Avenue, Vancouver East/Main
Sold price: $2,910,000
List price: $2,888,000
Days on market: 7
Year built: 2019
Size: 5 bedrooms, 7 bathrooms, 3,330 square feet, 4,048-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address: 20557 – 114 Avenue, Maple Ridge/Southwest
Sold price: $820,000
List price: $899,800
Days on market: 80
Year built: 1987
Size: 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms, 2,270 square feet, 7,200-square-foot lot

Highest townhouse
Address
: TH102, 8 Smithe Mews, Vancouver West/Yaletown
Sold price: $2,190,000
List price: $2,298,000
Days on market: 73
Year built: 2008
Size: 2 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 1,523 square feet

Lowest townhouse
Address
: #4, 10111 Gilbert Road, Richmond/Woodwards
Sold price: $683,500
List price: $689,000
Days on market: 11
Year built: 1984
Size: 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,269 square feet

Highest condo
Address: #2504, 1205 West Hastings Street, Vancouver West/Coal Harbour
Sold price: $1,775,000
List price: $1,799,000
Days on market: 13
Year built: 2007
Size: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,250 square feet

Lowest condo
Address: #314, 838 Hamilton Street, Vancouver West/Downtown
Sold price: $215,500
List price: $228,800
Days on market: 2
Year built: 1994
Size: 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, 439 square feet

Fraser Valley Real Estate Board

Highest single family
Address: 14271 – 70A Avenue, Surrey/East Newton
Sold price: $960,000
List price: $949,000
Days on market: 0
Year built: 1987
Size: 6 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 2,688 square feet, 7,200-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address: 32774 Badger Avenue, Mission
Sold price: $474,000
List price: $499,000
Days on market: 4
Year built: 1975
Size: 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 978 square feet, 6,059-square-foot lot

Highest condo
Address: #406, 15956 – 86A Avenue, Surrey/Fleetwood Tynehead
Sold price: $345,000
List price: $349,000
Days on market: 35
Year built: 2013
Size: 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, 602 square feet

Lowest condo 
Address: #106, 13780 – 76 Avenue, Surrey/East Newton
Sold price: $337,000
List price: $349,980
Days on market: 77
Year built: 1997
Size: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 816 square feet

Victoria Real Estate Board

Highest single family
Address: 2951 Phyllis Street, Saanich East/Ten Mile Point
Sold price: $2,800,000
List price: $3,000,000
Days on market: 49
Year built: 2018
Size: 5 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, 4,085 square feet, 18,316-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address:
 2602 Shoal Road, Gulf Islands/Pender Island
Sold price: $335,000
List price: $349,000
Days on market: 45
Year built: 2008
Size: 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, 530 square feet, 16,553-square-foot lot

Highest townhouse
Address: #6, 933 Meares Street, Victoria/Downtown
Sold price: $1,100,000
List price: $1,199,000
Days on market: 67
Year built: 2005
Size: 2 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms, 2,020 square feet

Lowest townhouse
Address: #119, 2117 Charters Road, Sooke/Sooke VIII Core
Sold price: $419,900
List price: $419,900
Days on market: 36
Year built: 2019
Size: 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 1,410 square feet, 1,307-square-foot lot

Highest condo
Address: #412, 888 Government Street, Victoria/Downtown
Sold price: $1,370,000
List price: $1,499,000
Days on market: 36
Year built: 2020
Size: 2 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 1,373 square feet

Lowest condo
Address: #202, 3133 Tillicum Road, Saanich West/Tillicum
Sold price: $220,000
List price: $224,900
Days on market:
 12
Year built: 1998
Size: 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, 631 square feet

Vancouver Island Real Estate Board

Highest single family
Address: 2051 Millicent Avenue, Duncan/Shawnigan
Sold price: $2,225,000
List price: $2,899,000
Days on market: 84
Year built: 2007
Size: 6 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 2,850 square feet, 33,977-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address: 
336 Hemlock Avenue, Islands/10 Gabriola Island
Sold price: $465,000
List price: $459,000
Days on market: 3
Year built: N/A
Size: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,462 square feet, 2.1-acre lot

Only condo/strata
Address: 
#34, 529 Johnstone Road, Parksville/Qualicum
Sold price:
 $474,900
List price: 
$474,900
Days on market: 
1
Year built: 
1993
Size: 
2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,422 square feet

Powell River Sunshine Coast Real Estate Board

Highest single family
Address: 3419 Ontario Avenue, Powell River/Westview
Sold price: $498,108
List price: $529,900
Days on market: 38
Year built: 1994
Size: 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 2,198 square feet, 8,778-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address: 14997 Saltery Road, Powell River South
Sold price: $192,500
List price: $219,900
Days on market: 427
Year built: N/A
Size: 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,669 square feet, 10,798-square-foot lot

Only townhouse
Address: #29, 3870 Joyce Avenue, Powell River/Westview
Sold price: $227,000
List price: $229,900
Days on market: 13
Year built: 1994
Size: 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 1,240 square feet

Highest condo
Address: #3, 3818 Joyce Avenue, Powell River/Westview
Sold price: $240,000
List price: $255,000
Days on market: 21
Year built: 1982
Size: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 956 square feet

Lowest condo
Address: #202, 4580 Joyce Avenue, Powell River/Westview
Sold price: $237,500
List price: $249,000
Days on market: 32
Year built: 1995
Size: 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, 1,130 square feet

South Okanagan Real Estate Board

Highest single family
Address: 4845 Mill Road, Naramata Village
Sold price: $2,810,000
List price: $2,750,000
Days on market: 91
Year built: 2005
Size: 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 2,750 square feet, 20,473-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address: 115 Lupine Road, Princeton/Rural
Sold price: $144,000
List price: $149,900
Days on market: 113
Year built: 2010
Size: 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, 270 square feet, 10,019-square-foot lot

Highest townhouse
Address: #118, 1692 Atkinson Street, Penticton/Main North
Sold price: $315,000
List price: $349,900
Days on market: 61
Year built: 1987
Size: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,085 square feet

Lowest townhouse
Address:
 #6, 6446 Meadows Drive, Oliver
Sold price: $261,000
List price: $269,900
Days on market: 51
Year built: 1990
Size: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,380 square feet

Highest condo
Address: 2820 Landry Crescent, Summerland/Trout Creek
Sold price: $1,170,000
List price: $1,190,000
Days on market: 64
Year built: 2015
Size: 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 1,839 square feet

Lowest condo
Address: #206, 1820 Atkinson Street, Penticton Main/South
Sold price: $225,000
List price: $264,000
Days on market: 145
Year built: 1986
Size: 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, 1,173 square feet

Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board

Highest single family
Address: 394 Braeloch Road, Central Okanagan/Upper Mission
Sold price: $2,550,000
List price: $2,998,000
Days on market: 43
Year built: 1973
Size: 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 4,109 square feet, 14,374-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address: 6850 – 53 Street NE, Shuswap/Revelstoke/N-E Salmon Arm
Sold price: $216,000
List price: $222,000
Days on market: 27
Year built: 1990
Size: 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, 891 square feet, 4,007-square-foot lot

Highest townhouse
Address: #6, 5955 Snowpines, Central Okanagan/Big White
Sold price: $890,000
List price: $925,000
Days on market: 201
Year built: 2005
Size: 5 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, 3,167 square feet

Lowest townhouse
Address: #82, 4740 – 20 Street, North Okanagan/Harwood
Sold price: $225,000
List price: $234,900
Days on market: 97
Year built: 1999
Size: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 893 square feet

Highest condo
Address: #1003, 1395 Ellis Street, Central Okanagan/Kelowna North
Sold price: $1,005,000
List price: $1,150,000
Days on market: 189
Year built: 2009
Size: 2 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 1,733 square feet

Lowest condo
Address: #409, 3304 – 35 Avenue, North Okanagan/City of Vernon
Sold price: $118,000
List price: $129,900
Days on market: 140
Year built: 1982
Size: 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, 650 square feet

Kamloops & District Real Estate Association

Highest single family
Address: 2003 High Country Boulevard, Kamloops/Valleyview
Sold price: $700,000
List price: $739,000
Days on market: 40
Year built: 2014
Size: 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 2,224 square feet, 20,037-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address: 4044 Davie Road, Kamloops/Rayleigh
Sold price: $487,500
List price: $489,900
Days on market: 16
Year built: 1988
Size: 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,805 square feet, 21,577-square-foot lot

Only townhouse
Address: #13, 1980 Glenwood Drive, Kamloops/Valleyview
Sold price: 
$259,900
List price: 
$259,900
Days on market: 
20
Year built: 
1971
Size: 
2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,240 square feet

Only condo
Address: #1314, C-3250 Village Way, Kamloops/Sun Peaks
Sold price: $79,900
List price: $79,900
Days on market: 11
Year built: 2008
Size: 1 bedroom, 2 bathrooms, 998 square feet

Kootenay Real Estate Board

Highest single family
Address: 6479 Wasa Lake Park Drive, Kiimberley/Cranbrook Rural/Wasa Rural
Sold price: $690,000
List price: $735,000
Days on market: 95
Year built: 1981
Size: 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 2,066 square feet, 43,690-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address: 8920 Dunn Street, Canal Flats
Sold price: $78,001
List price: $84,900
Days on market: 124
Year built: 1930
Size: 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, 917 square feet, 7,753-square-foot lot

Highest townhouse
Address: #14,1595 Whitetooth Trail, Golden Rural/North Highway 1
Sold price: $594,000
List price: $599,900
Days on market: 28
Year built: 2006
Size: 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,155 square feet

Lowest townhouse
Address: #306, 2030 Panorama Drive, Invermere Rural/Panorama
Sold price: $79,000
List price: $87,000
Days on market: 188
Year built: 2009
Size: 0 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, 530 square feet

Highest condo
Address: #310, 1500 McDonald Avenue, Fernie
Sold price: $415,100
List price: $409,900
Days on market: 13
Year built: 2006
Size: 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,226 square feet

Lowest condo
Address: #89, 100 Red Cedar Drive, Sparwood
Sold price: $42,000
List price: $42,000
Days on market: 19
Year built: 1970
Size: 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, 393 square feet

BC Northern Real Estate Board

Highest single family
Address: 7516 Magnussen Road, 100 Mile House/Bridge Lake/Sheridan Lake
Sold price: $368,000
List price: $379,000
Days on market: 48
Year built: 1969
Size: 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, 754 square feet, 51,836-square-foot lot

Lowest single family
Address: 4927 Lambly Avenue, Terrace/Terrace City
Sold price: $255,000
List price: $349,900
Days on market: 102
Year built: 1979
Size: 4 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, 1,346 square feet, 9,424-square-foot lot


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OPINION: Housing starts are particularly strong in Metro Vancouver, but one analyst wonders if it's developers trying to beat increases in development charges.

 
 

“As of April,” she advised the committee, the province appeared to be on track for “51,093 housing starts, which is a very strong number.”

A very strong number was putting it mildly. James’s provincial budget, tabled in February, forecast that housing starts would decline from 41,000 last year to 34,000 this year, a 17 per cent drop.

She’d stood by that forecast in the legislature (“I am comfortable with the numbers”) as recently as May 7, during debate on the spending estimates for her own Ministry of Finance.

In addressing the all-party committee on June 10, James suggested that, far from a decline in housing starts, B.C. could be headed for a 24 per cent increase over last year and a 50 per cent better result than the forecast in her own budget.

I was out of town when James made her presentation to the finance committee in advance of the committee’s own public consultations on next year’s provincial budget. But her change on housing starts was reported elsewhere and relayed to me by several readers.

When I returned from holiday this week, I asked the Finance Ministry about the basis for the revision and the extent to which it had been incorporated into the budget.

“The minister was referring to B.C.’s housing starts for the month of April 2019, which at the time, were reported by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) as approximately 51,000 annualized units,” said the response from the ministry.

Annualized units being the forecast that results from extrapolating the starts for one month over a full 12-month period.

The ministry went on to note that the CHMC projection has continued to quicken since April, with annualized units at 53,000 units to the end of May and 62,000 by the end of June.

Numbers to conjure with if they hold throughout the year. But the ministry isn’t going that far, not yet anyway.

“Housing starts in B.C. remain above the historical average and the current year-to-date average is above Budget 2019’s forecast,” concluded the statement. “The ministry continues to monitor evolving economic trends and will incorporate the latest data into its economic forecast update, which will be published in the first quarterly report in September 2019.”

Such caution is characteristic of the Finance Ministry, which routinely builds several “levels of prudence” into its budgets, a practice James has continued.

For now, the word out of the ministry is as follows: “The ministry forecasts housing starts during the yearly budget process using historical trends, current data available and market conditions.  The forecast in budget 2019 for housing starts in B.C. was 34,015 for 2019 and 31,846 for 2020. The long term historical average is close to 30,000.”

Seeking additional context, I contacted Central 1 Credit Union, umbrella organization for credit unions here in B.C. and elsewhere.

The agency’s most recent outlook, released at the end of May, forecast housing starts would decline to 35,000 units this year, or about the same level as predicted by James.

On Tuesday, deputy chief economist Bryan Yu acknowledged the improvement in the data from CMHC. He said the increase was largely confined to Metro Vancouver and mostly to apartment construction, both favourable trends for a government tackling affordability.

But he cautioned that it could still be a spike, brought on by factors like builders trying to get ahead of pending increases in development charges and latter day efforts in the faltering market for presales.

Yu expanded on those observations in a piece published Tuesday in Business in Vancouver.

“There is a severe disconnect between housing starts — which are up 18 per cent through 2019’s first six months — and the resale housing market, where sales are sluggish and prices are declining, particularly in Metro Vancouver.

“While home-ownership demand has slowed with policy measures, current starts reflect projects pre-sold in previous years when the market was significantly stronger,” he continued. “Recent hikes to development cost charges in Vancouver drove higher building permits in April and likely pulled construction dates forward on some projects.”

Even if the recent pace slackens in the remainder of the year, Yu acknowledged that on the basis of the strong first half, “housing starts could outpace 2018’s performance of more than 40,000 units.”

In the longer term, he forecast, “this will only delay a more substantial decline in housing starts. Demand-constraining policies and elevated home inventory have curtailed presale activity, which will lead to a drop-off in multi-family developments.”

As a further sign that not all indicators are headed in the right direction for James, on Tuesday her hometown newspaper, the Victoria Times Colonist, reported a five per cent drop in the value of residential construction this year over last.

Back in February, when the budget projected a decline in housing starts of up to 33 per cent over four years, I took it as evidence that her own ministry recognized that the New Democrats were not doing enough to increase in the housing supply.

But if the surge recorded by CHMC in the late spring proves to be sustainable, then come September’s update on provincial finances, James will be painting a much rosier picture on housing starts.

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I have listed a new property at 3183 SHAUGHNESSY ST in Port Coquitlam.
Perfect holding property for investors!! Side by side duplex zoned in the Official Community Plan for RT - Townhouse Residential. Large lot at 9788 square feet with side lane access. One side currently rented to long term tenants. Roof replaced in 2017. Transit is on your doorstep and close to shopping and parks.
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I have sold a property at 9284 GOLDHURST TERR in Burnaby.
Beautifully maintained duplex style townhome in desirable Forest Hills. You will love the many upgrades; Maple engineered HW, tile & carpeting, fresh paint & totally renovated kitchen, ensuite & powder room. Spacious living room features a bay window & cozy gas fireplace. Kitchen with quartz counters, stainless steel appliances & Maple shaker style cabinetry including built in pantry & china cabinet. Rounding out the main floor is a den & large dining room with access to the deck. Up are 3 bedrooms, master with tons of closet space & ensuite with heated flooring, glass shower, separate tub, quartz counters & white cabinetry. Downstairs is a rec room, bedroom, laundry/bath & wet bar. Walk out basement, Double garage, built in vacuum. Close to SFU, skytrain & bus.
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I have sold a property at 721 QUADLING AVE in Coquitlam.
Come and view the perfect holding property in West Coquitlam. This lovely 3 bedroom home is in an area of development and could be an investment as a rental property in the short term. Spacious rancher with a living room, dining room and kitchen also with a huge family room at the back of the home. Large corner lot with back lane access and detached garage. Private yard is nicely treed and landscaped with several patios to enjoy the outdoors. Central location close to Lougheed Mall & Skytrain with quick access to Highway 1.
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Tis for Deep Cleaning a Home

 

Keeping a home spic and span can be a time and energy consuming process. However, there are many

ways to get and keep a home immaculately clean without breaking a sweat. Cleaning soap scum out a

tub can be a backbreaking task, but homeowners can cut the effort in half by attaching a scrubber to a

power drill and using it to do the scrubbing for them. Cleaning mineral build-up on a showerhead doesn’t

have to involve tedious

scouring, just attach a bag of vinegar to the showerhead using a rubber band and soak it overnight –

presto, good as new!

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I have sold a property at 3940 FIR ST in Burnaby.
Central location and quiet neighbourhood for this 2 storey home. It enjoys many updates including roof, windows, blinds, interior doors, flooring and suite. Enjoy the natural light from the expansive windows throughout the main floor. 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms are up, large living room with access to the deck across the front, adjacent dining room and kitchen with access to the large south facing rear deck. Down is the suite, recreation room with bar extra bedroom or family room and shared laundry. Huge back yard with garden, double garage, double carport and plenty of additional parking. This home is in a very convenient location close to schools, hospital, shopping, recreation and transit. Bring the family!
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I have listed a new property at 103 CEDARWOOD DR in Port Moody.
Priced to Sell! This home is ready for the summer with recently added A/C. Bright 4 bedroom & 3 bath situated on HUGE lot in Heritage Woods! Formal living room w/ gas F/P overlooks the quiet cul-de-sac. Enjoy Southwest views of Burnaby Mountain from the dining room, kitchen, family room & deck. Huge master suite w/ spacious walk-in closet & spa inspired ensuite. 3 other big bedrooms & bath complete the upper floor. Basement includes finished rec room, flex room & storage. Unfinished area with lots of potential; possible suite with separate entry, patio & yard - loads of possibilities! Close to all levels of schools; 15 min walk to Heritage Woods Secondary, one of the top rated high schools in the Tri Cities, Aspenwood Elementary & Eagle Mtn Middle. Close to parks & public transit
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I have listed a new property at 203 2285 61ST AVE E in Vancouver.
Perfect home for downsizers! This top floor unit enjoys a large floor plan with plenty of windows and skylights overlooking Bobolink Park. Freshly painted with new carpeting, this 2 bedroom and 2 bathroom home has radiant in floor heating and a sundrenched room off of the kitchen to use as an eating area, den or sunroom. Large living room with gas fireplace & access to the covered balcony. Two good sized bedrooms including the master with 4 piece ensuite. Central location, close to transit and to Fraserview Golf course. 19+ complex with no rentals.
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Please visit our Open House at 95 STRONG RD in Anmore.
Open House on Sunday, July 7, 2019 2:00PM - 4:00PM
Stately Craftsman style home on a beautifully manicured acreage. This estate residence, over 3 levels, takes utmost advantage of the mountain views & abundance of natural light. Gated driveway takes you to the quaint entrance with a covered porch & seating area. Main floor great room with soaring 2 storey windows to enjoy the view. Floor to ceiling river rock fireplace & French doors to the deck open to the kitchen with breakfast bar & eating area. Master on the main with WIC & 4 piece ensuite including a decadent claw foot tub! Formal dining rm, den & laundry finish the main. Up - 2 more bdrms & loft area above the garage. Walk out bsmt; recreation room with bar, family room, another bdrm, flex room & tons of storage. Huge level lot, RV parking. Open House Sun July 7, 2-4pm
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