Courtesy of Geoff & Bobbie

Geoff & Bobbie's Newsletter

Your Family Real Estate Professionals!

Mike MacGowan Sales Representative

Ken MacGowan B.Comm., CPA, CMA, Real Estate Broker

Daren MacGowan Sales Representative

Volume 13 Number 2

TOP3THINGSTOWATCHOUTFORWHEN BUYINGAHOME Buying a house is not only a huge financial investment, it’s also an investment of your time and emotions. Make the process as smooth as possible by keeping an eye out for these three things when visiting a listing. Cracks in the foundation. Almost all foundations have small hairline cracks. It’s the bigger ones you need to worry about. Of course, not all cracks are going to be visible to the naked eye. When viewing a home, watch out for doors that

stick, cracks above or below windows and uneven floors. These can all be signs that a foundation is cracked and unstable. Heating and cooling issues. If a potential home has an outdated furnace, hot water tank or air conditioning system, make sure to factor the cost of

replacing them into your offer price. Window quality. Much like with furnaces and air conditioners, outdated windows signal an additional cost in your not-so- distant future. Not only will they eventually need to be

replaced, you’ll also spend more on your energy bills due to hot or cold air escaping through old windows.


Courtesy of

INGREDIENTS: 3 pounds potatoes 1/2 small yellow onion, finely diced 4 tablespoons butter, melted 1 cup full-fat sour cream 1/3 cup milk or half & half 1 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon salt, separated 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper 1 teaspoon garlic powder 4 to 6 strips bacon, cooked and chopped 1 1/2 tablespoons chives, finely chopped 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped

DIRECTIONS: 1. Wash the potatoes, then peel and chop into 1 1/2-inch cubes.

2. Put the potatoes in a large pot. Cover with cold water, making sure all the potatoes are submerged. Add 1 tablespoon salt. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer, partially covering the pot. Simmer until the potatoes are fork-tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and let sit for 3 to 5 minutes. 3. Preheat the oven to 350° F. 4. In a large bowl, mash the potatoes with a potato masher or ricer. 5. Add the onion, butter, sour cream and milk. Stir well until combined. 6. Mix in 1 cup of cheddar cheese, ground pepper and garlic powder. Stir well. 7. Transfer the potato mixture to a greased 9-inch pan or 2-quart casserole dish. Top with the remaining cheese. Loosely cover the casserole with aluminum foil. 8. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove the aluminum foil, add the bacon and bake for another 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Top with chives and parsley. Enjoy!

HOWTODECORATEYOURHOMELIKEAMINIMALIST Whether you consider yourself a minimalist, or just like the simple look of a clutter-free home – these tips are for you! First off, use a white, light grey or beige colour palette on your walls, built-ins and large pieces of furniture. The barely there colour scheme will make your home feel brighter, more open and more peaceful. Add in a few pops of colour with accessories such as throw pillows, curtains or vases. Next up, don’t be afraid to leave spaces empty. Not every corner or surface needs to be filled up. Empty spaces create balance in a home and make the items you do choose to display stand out more. Fight the urge to fill up the space. Box up some of your belongings to donate or to store. If in storage, you can swap items out periodically helping your decor feel fresh without creating clutter. You can create minimalist space with artwork, textures and simple objects that tell a story. For example, if you’re only going to hang one piece of art in your bedroom, it should be something you absolutely love. Allow your belongings to tell your personal story by only putting out things that mean something to you. This could include family heirlooms or souvenirs from your travels. Lastly, let the sun shine in by using lightweight curtains and blinds on your windows – or nothing at all. Certainly bedroom windows need something to block early morning and late evening light from disturbing your sleep, but don’t be afraid to leave windows in rooms such as the kitchen and living room bare. Remember – natural light is a minimalist’s friend.


Ever dreamed of downsizing and living in a home that’s easier to maintain? Or perhaps a small home is all your current finances allow for. There are many reasons to purchase a smaller home, which is typically defined as being less than 1,000 square feet. However, depending on where in the country you live, what is considered a “small home” may have a higher or lower footprint. Regardless of size, the most important aspect of buying a small home is that it is only big enough to suit the needs of those living within it – and not a square foot bigger. Aside from saving on maintenance costs and mortgage payments, a smaller house has many other benefits. More money to renovate and decorate. Having a lower mortgage payment often leaves you with some extra income to play with. Buying a smaller home that you can add your personal touch to also makes it seem roomier because everything in it is perfectly you. Close proximity to your family or roommates. This is one of those benefits that some may view as a negative, but in the long run it fosters relationships and creates more of a close-knit living experience. Easier to clean. While this point ties into the reduced maintenance of a smaller home, it’s worth mentioning all on its own. Why? Because less time spent cleaning means more time spent doing what you really want. It also means less money spent on cleaning supplies. Lower environmental impact. Because a smaller home has a smaller physical footprint, it is less of an impact on natural resources. It takes less energy to heat and less electricity to light. And if you live in a small condo in a city centre, you can also reduce the amount of fuel used to drive by walking everywhere.


Fill in the answers to the clues by selecting the correct syllables from the list below. Each syllable can only be used once and the number of syllables to be used is shown in brackets. When the correct words are filled in, the first and last letters reading down will reveal a proverb.


January Resales Lose Momentum Ottawa February 5, 2020 - Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 780 residential properties in January

AVERAGE SALE PRICE $516,229 residential UP 19.3% year-over-year

through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 817 in January 2019, a decrease of 4.5 per cent. January’s sales included 558 in the residential-property class, down 8.4 per cent from a year ago, and 222 in the condominium-property category, an increase of 6.7 per cent from January 2019. The five-year average for January unit sales is 713. “2020 is off to a slower start as the shortage of inventory is now impacting market momentum,” states Ottawa Real Estate Board’s President Deborah Burgoyne. “Although we have higher sales than the five-year average, due to increased condo sales, the persistent supply challenges seem to have finally caught up with us. Furthermore, the number of new listings that came on the market in January (1,082) is well below the average (1,651).” January’s average sale price for a condominium- class property was $338,077, an increase of 19.1 per cent from last year while the average sale price of a residential-class property was $516,229, an increase of 19.3 per cent from a year ago. - Source: Ottawa Real Estate Board

$338,077 condo UP 19.1% year-over-year AVERAGE SALE PRICE




condo 222


Stats are Reflective of January 2020 Source: Ottawa Real Estate Board

Market values stated are of the average of Ottawa and surrounding region. Individual home market values will vary and are affected by factors such as location, size, interior and exterior condition. Please call to get an up-to-date evaluation of your home.

Direct. 613.791.5480

Mike MacGowan Sales Representative 613.859.1317

Ken MacGowan B.Comm., CPA, CMA, Real Estate Broker 613.791.5480

Daren MacGowan Sales Representative 613.324.5294

Each Office Independently Owned and Operated. Unit 1, 5517 Hazeldean Road Ottawa, ON K2S 0P5 Affiliates Realty Ltd., Brokerage

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