Courtesy of Lynda Campbell
Volume 15 | Number 5
THINKING OF SELLING YOUR HOME?
If you’re thinking of selling your home, you likely have some questions – especially if this is your first home and therefore your first home sale.
The first thing you might be wondering is if your house is ready to list. Unless your home is in excellent condition, you will likely have to perform some maintenance and upgrades before you list, which will be at your own cost. The good thing about putting money into your home before you sell is that you may get a better price for it, plus it could sell faster.
You may also wonder if you should buy your new home before you list, or sell your current home before you buy. While it depends on your unique situation, many experts would advise you to do both at the same time. Just make sure you’ve done your research about where you want to buy – what types of properties are listed, how much they cost on average. Don’t forget to get pre-approved for a mortgage. The more you’ve done before listing your home and beginning the search for a new one – the better.
HOWTO MAKE PIÑATA CUPCAKES Courtesy of www.ehow.com
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 cup sprinkles or small candy 8 ounces cream cheese 1 cup heavy cream 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 cup powdered sugar
INGREDIENTS : 1/2 cup softened butter 3/4 cup sugar 2 large eggs 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 2/3 cup whole milk 1 tablespoon white vinegar
DIRECTIONS: 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Beat softened butter and sugar until creamy and well combined. Beat in eggs, vanilla, milk and white vinegar until well combined. Sprinkle in flour, baking soda and salt. Stir until just combined. Scoop mixture into cupcake papers until 2/3 full. Bake for 13 minutes or until the top springs back when lightly touched. Cool completely. 2. For each cupcake, cut out a circle from center. The walls and bottom of cupcake should still be intact. Slice the bottom off the cake plug, keeping the top portion. Fill hole with candy or sprinkles. Place the cake plug back on top. 3. Separately, beat cream cheese until light and fluffy. Slowly add cream, a few tablespoons at a time, until incorporated. Add vanilla extract and powdered sugar. Beat until well combined. Frost the cupcakes and add sprinkles if desired. Serve the piñata cupcakes and watch smiles appear when their secret is discovered!
CINCO DE MAYO FACTS Cinco de Mayo is one of the most celebrated, but likely least understood, holidays. Brush up your Cinco knowledge with these facts. – Cinco de Mayo literally means the “The fifth of May.” – It is a Mexican holiday celebrating the Battle of Puebla, which took place May 5, 1862. – The Battle of Puebla was one of the few Mexican victories during France’s attempt to colonize Mexico. – Contrary to popular belief, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico’s Independence Day, which is actually celebrated on September 16.
HOW TO QUICKLY AND AFFORDABLY STAGE YOUR HOME With all of the television shows featuring experts beautifully staging homes, it ’s no wonder the average homeowner is unsure if they can successfully stage their own home for sale. By following a few simple tips, you can ready your home both quickly and affordably. Perhaps it won’t be television-worthy, but it will certainly be sale-worthy. First off, if you do nothing else, make sure you declutter. Potential buyers want to see your house, not your things. Getting rid of clutter will also automatically make your space feel bigger and cleaner. Plus, you don’t have to spend a dime to remove stuff! Next up, arrange decor you already have in groups of three, which is pleasing to the eye. If you don’t own any interesting items, head to the thrift store and pick up a few neutral baskets and other simple odds and ends like candlesticks and vases. However, remember you aren’t shopping for
you, you’re shopping for pieces that the majority of people are going to find eye-catching. Then light up your home by opening the blinds and curtains, or by adding in lamps where needed. Experts say that every room should have multiple light sources – an overhead light, floor lamps and table lamps, which will create warmth and depth. Lastly, a staple in almost all professionally staged homes is fresh flowers. While store bought greenery might be out of your budget, you can always head outside and gather up a few pieces of nature to display. Or, if it ’s the wrong time of year, ask your green-thumbed friends and family members if you could borrow a few houseplants to help add a little life to your home.
HOME BUYING 101
Buying a home is one of life’s huge milestones. Here’s an outline of the whole process, broken down into five steps, which should clear up some of the confusion and help you to feel more confident as you move forward in your home buying journey.
Step 1: Figure out your finances. It ’s always a good idea to have the financial side of things figured out before you begin looking for a home. Making an appointment to get pre-approved for a mortgage will help streamline the process once you do find a property. Plus, it gives you an upper limit for your budget. Step 2: Organize your paperwork. Mortgage lenders are going to want to know your income, what you currently own and your current level of debt. By organizing all of your documentation beforehand, you’ll save time and the lenders will appreciate your preparedness. Step 3: Talk to your real estate agent. You can talk to your agent before any of the above steps – that ’s what they’re there for! Real estate agents are experts in the home buying process and will be MAY JOKES FOR KIDS Courtesy of www.funkidsjokes.com 1. What did the spring say when it was in trouble?
able to answer any questions – big or small. Step 4: Begin the search. Have your agent find properties that fit within your parameters, or do some online shopping and bring potential homes to them. Remember as you visit these properties to prioritize things like if the home is in good repair; don’t get caught up on paint colours and decor. Step 5: Make an offer. You’ve found a home you want to purchase – hooray! This step is exciting, but it ’s important to keep a level head, as property sales don’t always go through. Approach this step of the process as more of a business transaction. Once everything is signed and the money has been transferred to the previous owners, then it ’s time to celebrate.
6. What starts growing in the spring and then goes POP? 7. Who conducts the spring orchestra? 8. If April showers bring May flowers, what do May flowers bring? 9. What goes up when May rain comes down? 10. Why are oak trees so forgiving?
10. An umbrella. 11. Every May they “turn over a new leaf.”
6. MAYbe. 7. May-ze
2. Which crime fighter likes May the most? 3. What season is it when you are on a trampoline in May? 4. Who’s the most important person in a Spring wedding? 5. Which month can’t make a decision?
5. The MAYtron of honor.
1. Answers: 2. May Day! 3. Robin 4. Spring-ti
9. Pilgri ms.
TRUE OR FALSE
CROSSWORD In this crossword there are two clues for each word. Can you work out which is true and which is false?
Courtesy of www.puzzlechoice.com
April Residential Resales in a Flux
AVERAGE SALE PRICES
$473,702 condo UP 11% year-to-year
$829,318 residential UP 12% year-to-year
1,419 PROPERTY SALES
470 PROPERTY SALES
Ottawa, May 4, 2022 – Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,889 residential properties in April through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 2,394 in April 2021, a decrease of 21 percent. April’s sales included 1,419 in the residential-property class, down 23 percent from a year ago, and 470 in the condominium-property category, a decrease of 13 percent from April 2021. The five year average for total unit sales in April is 1,849.
“The fact remains that it is still a Seller’s market with supply under one month. Bidding wars and multiple offers persist in some pockets, prices continue to rise, albeit more moderately, and the market remains relatively strong,” states Ottawa Real Estate Board’s President Penny Torontow. Statistics reflect market activity in April 2022 | Source: OREB ® 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.
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