What to look for at Open Houses

The quest for the perfect home can be overwhelming at times, no matter if it is your first home or your third move in only a year.

Often times, your first look at a new, potential home will be at an open house. This is an opportunity to view a potential living space to determine if it would be a good fit for you and your family.

These days, everyone’s time is valuable so it is important to weigh out the pros and cons of a property and whether or not it makes the cut for a second, closer look. Is it an ideal layout? Can you visualize your family living there?

It is a good idea to have these points on your radar the next time you are at an open house to ensure these trips are worthy and informative.

  • The Neighbourhood


During your open house visit, before you step into the house – even before you step into the yard – have a critical eye for nearby homes and the location the house resides in.

Take some time to explore the neighbourhood and surrounding streets, including the traffic speeds. Are there local amenities available like schools, shopping and parks within walking distance? What about highway access if this is a must-have for you?

How about the condition of homes in the area? Are the properties next door well taken care of? Is the neighbourhood kid-friendly? Are there lots of retired people?

One of the most important takeaways from attending an open house is the ability to see a prime piece of real estate in its natural habitat, as opposed to just in a newspaper or online ad. After all, when you buy a home, you are investing into its neighbourhood.

  1. The landscaping and exterior

While you are outside, take a walk around the entire perimeter of the house and look for signs of care – or lack of it.

Is there a fence and, if so, what kind of condition is it in? What about any trees? Are they well-maintained and healthy looking? Are the wooden boards on the deck rotting? Is the driveway going to need to be repaved? Will the roof shingles need to be replaced in a year or two? Not only can exterior defects be a telltale sign of maintenance habits that may be waiting inside, these issues may in fact make or break a deal.  3. The layout

Unfortunately, when you view photos online you usually are not able to tell the entire layout of the home.

How the home flows is important when determining how well your stuff will fit and even more, how well your family will fit in this home. Is the kitchen near the dining room? How large are the closets? What kind of storage space is available in the kitchen, bathrooms and garage? At an open house, follow the flow to determine if the layout of the rooms fit your lifestyle or whether it would be necessary to knock out a wall to achieve an open concept design that works best for you and your family.

While open houses provide a great opportunity to gain insight into a property, many homes are selling too quickly in our current, fast-paced seller’s market to hold an open house. To avoid disappointment, scheduling a viewing with a realtor as soon as the property hits the market is your best chance of success.

The Rocca Sisters have built a solid reputation for serving their clients with a higher standard of professionalism. Their full service, highly responsive, executive team of professionals are deeply committed to providing timely, ethical and comprehensive guidance, and as such they collaborate efficiently as a team to offer added value to your home-buying experience.

Contact the Rocca Sisters & Associates today and let their personal approach and proven results surpass your expectations.

Streets filled with magic, cheer at Santa Parades

Christmas parades are a great way for the community to officially kick off the holiday season and Santa parades in particular have a rich history and have been taking place across North America for decades.

The Rocca Sisters & Associates were so excited to have taken part in the Flamborough Santa Claus Parade this past Saturday November 26. Despite the wet weather, the evening parade was filled with joy and wonder!

The Flamborough Santa Claus Parade has had remarkable success in providing a night for families that is both magical and fun. Wonderful holiday music from numerous bands put everyone in the festive spirit and the dance schools were delightful and most entertaining!

One of things we adore the most about the parades is seeing so many of our clients, friends and family enjoying what our community has to offer.

The Rocca Sisters enjoys giving back to our community by enthusiastically participating in event and activities that result in a significant contribution to the overall quality of life of our friends, neighbours and colleagues.

Don’t forget to come out and join us at the annual Burlington Christmas Parade that takes place on Sunday, Dec. 2. The Rocca Sisters will have a float in the parade route that starts at 2 p.m. at the Burlington Mall at the corner of Prospect Street and Guelph Line.


Valuing your home properly is key

Everyone’s current situation and goals for selling a home are unique.  Though every sale is different and demands professional advice and personal attention from your realtor, pricing your home properly is essential to all selling scenarios.

The opportune time to sell is when a home first hits the market, particularly in a seller’s market like we have now. This is because many buyers have been eyeing properties currently on the market and are waiting for just the perfect one to make its debut.

Setting the proper price from the get go places you in the best possible light to appeal to the most number of buyers that have the ability to pay the price your home is worth. This translates to selling your home in a timely and efficient manner.

If your home is underpriced, you may see a large flock of onlookers and even receive multiple offers.

“But the flip side to underpricing your home is you could also lose thousands on your family’s largest investment,” warns Tanya Rocca.

An overpriced home, on the other hand, will most likely result in a lack of interest in your property and result in a scarce amount of offers.

“If your house is overpriced, viewers that do express an interest will be less inclined to put forth an offer to pay an unrealistic price,” says Cathy Rocca.

“If you wait too long and then decide to lower your price at a later time, you may have already missed out on out on many of the most interested buyers.”

Pricing a property can be viewed as a balancing act where the goal is to achieve the highest price possible but, at the same time, not to deter potential buyers from placing an offer.

Arriving at an accurate asking price involves up-to-the-minute research and experienced judgment.  Besides thoroughly analyzing current real estate market trends, your realtor should measure your home against similar neighborhood homes that have recently been sold or are currently on the market.

“You’ll want to know how long these homes were on the market, and whether sellers had to reduce their initial prices in order to sell,” says Tanya.

“It is also important to determine what features make your house stand out among others currently on the market.  After all, buyers are comparison shoppers.”

The Rocca Sisters and Associates offer a detailed Comparative Market Analysis that gives you the accurate, reliable foundation you need to price your home right.

“We use the most up-to-date statistical analysis to assess the value of your home,” says Cathy. “We price it right the first time.”

The bottom line is if you are looking for top dollar when selling your home, it’s smart to set the right price at the outset. When you offer your home at its true market value from the day it goes on the market, you’re giving yourself the best chance to receive a fair offer in a reasonable amount of time.

Contact The Rocca Sisters & Associates today for a free, no obligation assessment on the value of your home and let their personal approach and proven results surpass your expectations.

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