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Monday, December 31, 2012

Bonne Année et Bonne Santé!

Happy New Year!
Wishing you all - good health, peace and happiness in 2013!

Paul and Diane Laflamme
Royal LePage Village

Saturday, December 22, 2012


Joyeux Noël et Bonne Année!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Paul and I wish our family, friends and clients all the joys of the season. May you be blessed with good health, peace and love. Thank you also for supporting our real estate business. We appreciate your loyalty and support. 

Happy Holidays from our home to your home!
Joyeuses Fêtes de chez nous à chez vous!
Diane and Paul Laflamme

Monday, October 29, 2012

2494 Deer Run, Saint-Lazare. - Vendu!

2494 Deer Run, Saint-Lazare

Cette maison familiale idéale est située sur un croissant tranquille au coeur de Saddlebrook. Beaux jardins et propriété privée. Maison très bien entrenue avec salle familiale au rez-de-chaussée ouverte à la cuisine et coin-repas. Solarium très ensoleillé avec accès sur la terrasse arrière qui mène au gazebo avec spa. 

This ideal family home is located on a quiet crescent in the heart of Saddlebrook. The grounds are lovely and the property is private. This well maintained home has a main floor family room which opens on to the kitchen and dinette. The solarium is full of sunshine and you can access the back deck which leads to the gazebo with hot tub. Many updates.


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Bullying.....has to stop.

The students at Westwood Senior High School in Hudson, Quebec, Canada created this video as part of their anti-bullying campaign. The song was sung by artist Patrick Watson who was raised in Hudson, Quebec.

Well done....

Every child, teenager AND adult should watch this.

Friday, October 19, 2012

CRTC approves licence for radio station serving Hudson, St-Lazare

The English-speaking community in the off-island area is going to get its first local radio station within the next year.

On Friday, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission approved an application from Dufferin Communications to launch a commercial radio station serving Hudson/St. Lazare at 106.7 FM. The station’s signal, from a 500-watt transmitter on a tower on Harwood Blvd. in St-Lazare, would also reach into Vaudreuil, Oka and parts of the West Island.
“We’re really, really excited,” Dufferin, vice-president Carmela Laurignano, told The Gazette.
The company first applied for the licence in February 2010 and has been patiently waiting for a hearing and a decision. In the meantime, the Toronto-based company also won a licence for a French-language AM radio station in Montreal serving the gay community.

Programming on the new Hudson/St. Lazare station, whose brand name has not yet been decided, would be similar to The Jewel, Dufferin’s network of stations with easy-listening music from artists like Céline Dion, Michael Bublé and Tony Bennett, though Laurignano said they would try to make the programming here as broad-based as possible since it will be the only station in its market. She also said it would have much more news and information than other Dufferin stations. The application calls for four hours and 22 minutes a week of news, of which half would be local to Hudson/St. Lazare, including a calendar of local events.

Laurignano said the company hopes to have the station on the air by next fall, and looks to hire between 15 and 20 people in various positions.

“It’s our intention to hire locally,” she said, adding that they have been bombarded by job queries since the application for the station was published by the CRTC in February.
The application got the support of the Town of Hudson, which passed a unanimous resolution at a town council meeting in February. But it was opposed by other radio stations concerned about competition in the Montreal market.

“The area is very much one that stands on its own (and is) separate from the Montreal area,” Laurignano told The Gazette in February.

As part of its application, Dufferin commissioned a survey that showed most people in the two towns don’t identify themselves as Montrealers and feel existing radio stations don’t adequately cover news from that community.

By next fall, that should change a great deal.
To read the CRTC decision, click here:

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Vendu - 2560 Julien, Saint-Lazare

2560 Julien, Saint-Lazare is sold!
This beautiful home was listed at $369,000
Vendor and Buyers are very happy!

2560 Julien, Saint-Lazare
Paul & Diane Laflamme
Courtiers immobilier
Royal LePage Village

93 Pyke Court, Hudson is sold!

83 Pyke Court, Hudson
Listed and sold by Royal LePage Village Hudson 
Sold in 14 days!
Asking price was $979,000

Paul and Diane Laflamme
Royal LePage Village

Canadian House Prices Edge Up in Third Quarter While the Number of Home Sales Fall

Canadian House Prices Edge Up in Third Quarter While the Number of Home Sales Fall

First-time buyer activity drops as market adjusts to new mortgage regulations

TORONTO, October 3, 2012 – The Royal LePage House Price Survey released today showed the average price of a home in Canada increased year-over-year between 1.8 and 4.8 per cent in the third quarter of 2012.
Survey findings indicated that the average standard two-storey home in Canada increased 4 per cent year-over-year rising to $403,747, while detached bungalows rose 4.8 per cent to $366,773. Standard condominiums witnessed an increase of 1.8 per cent to $243,607. Most cities in Canada experienced modest price appreciation in the quarter, but fewer homes were sold compared to the same period in 2011.
“A drop in the number of homes trading hands typically precedes a period of softening house prices. Where there is reduced demand, those who want to sell their homes adjust their asking price to stimulate interest. During the third quarter, unit home sales were positive in July, fell 9 per cent year-over-year in August and we are expecting September to show a decline as well,” said Phil Soper, president and chief executive, Royal LePage. “We had predicted this cyclical change early in the year, a natural market reaction after a period of strong expansion. Changes to mortgage regulations, which took effect on July 9th, accelerated the correction.”
In July, the Minister of Finance announced that the maximum amortization period for insured mortgages would be reduced to 25 years from 30 years. This was the fourth intervention in the mortgage market in just four years and the most impactful. Potential first-time buyers, which in a typical market represent one third to one half of all purchase transactions, felt the changes immediately.
“While hard-hit in the short-term, first-time buyers will adjust to tougher mortgage qualifications. The dream of homeownership is very much alive among young Canadians. They may remain renters for sometime as they save; some will opt for less desirable neighbourhoods and some will purchase smaller homes,” added Soper. “In the meanwhile, we will feel their absence in national sales statistics.”
Canadian consumers were bombarded with troublesome economic news from around the globe during the period, particularly in the early weeks of the third quarter. While this has been a drag on the nation’s housing market and contributed to a slowing in home sale transactions, consumer confidence appeared to rebound in September, which should support activity in the important fall market.
“Policy makers in Canada and the United States have confirmed that the current period of very low interest rates will continue, likely through 2013. This is very supportive of housing market activity and any downward pressure on home prices should be minimal,” said Soper. “And for the first time in six years, sustained positive news from the American housing market should leave Canadian’s more confident about our continued economic prosperity.”
National average house price changes do not always reflect the markets of individual cities, which are closely tied to their local economies. Case in point, some $29 billion in energy related investments are now underway in Alberta and Calgary is expected to lead the nation in economic growth through 2013. The city posted healthy price appreciation for both detached bungalows and two-storey homes, as predicted in previous Royal LePage House Price Surveys and Market Survey Forecasts.
“When the underlying economy of a city is sound and growing, house price appreciation is sustained. Calgary has enjoyed solid growth in home values this year. I have also been very pleased with the growth in commercial brokerage transactions seen in our Royal LePage Commercial business in the region,” said Soper.

Regional Market Summaries
Halifax’s strong employment levels led to average price increases across all three housing types surveyed. Detached bungalows continued to witness the largest year-over-year gains, increasing 8.9 per cent to $293,000. Detached bungalows in St. John’s witnessed the largest average price gains across Canada, rising 9.9 per cent, as mega-projects continue to boost migration.  
Despite a decline in market activity, Montreal’s house prices posted healthy increases in the second quarter of 2012. Standard two-storey homes witnessed the largest average price increase, rising 5.5 per cent to $387,786.
Healthy employment in Ottawa’s technology sector balanced job loss in the government sector as the region posted healthy average price increases across all three housing types surveyed, with house price gains ranging from 4.9 to 6.1 per cent.
Average house price gains in Toronto ranged from 2.7 to 5.9 per cent for housing types surveyed. Although demand decreased modestly due to mortgage rule changes, the pipeline of potential buyers continued to put upward pressure on detached bungalows and standard two-storey homes. Multiple offers are still very common in the region.
Winnipeg’s real estate market produced average price gains ranging from 6.5 to 8.3 per cent as first-time buyers remained fairly active, despite recent changes to mortgage rules.
Low inventory coupled with demand created by low interest rates continued to put upward pressure on average year-over-year price gains in Regina. Standard-two storey homes posted the largest increase of 9.8 per cent rising to an average price of $359,500.
Calgary’s healthy market activity and increased consumer confidence has led to house price gains in the third quarter for detached bungalows and standard two-storey homes, increasing 6.5 per cent and 4.1 per cent respectively. Detached bungalows in Edmonton posted strong price gains rising an average of 7.5 per cent in the third quarter, while two-storey homes increased a modest 1.5 per cent and standard condominiums declined 0.6 per cent.
In Vancouver, average house prices posted modest decreases as market activity slowed down during the third quarter. Standard condominiums posted the largest decrease, slipping 3.0 per cent year-over-year to $498,000.
Royal LePage’s quarterly House Price Survey shows the annual change of prices for key housing segments in select national markets.  Click here to download the chart PDF

About the Royal LePage House Price Survey

The Royal LePage House Price Survey is the largest, most comprehensive study of its kind in Canada, with information on seven types of housing in over 250 neighbourhoods from coast to coast.  This release references an abbreviated version of the survey which highlights house price trends for the three most common types of housing in Canada in 90 communities across the country.  A complete database of past and present surveys is available on the Royal LePage Web site at Current figures will be updated following the complete tabulation of the data for the third quarter 2012. A printable version of the third quarter 2012 survey will be available online on November 2 2012.
Housing values in the Royal LePage House Price Survey are Royal LePage opinions of fair market value in each location, based on local data and market knowledge provided by Royal LePage residential real estate experts.
Royal LePage Q3 2012 House Price Survey - Data Chart PDF

About Royal LePage

Serving Canadians since 1913, Royal LePage is the country’s leading provider of services to real estate brokerages, with a network of 14,000 real estate professionals in over 600 locations nationwide. Royal LePage is the only Canadian real estate company to have its own charitable foundation, the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation, dedicated to supporting women's & children’s shelters and educational programs aimed at ending domestic violence. Royal LePage is a Brookfield Real Estate Services Inc. company, a TSX-listed corporation trading under the symbol TSX:BRE.
For more information visit

Friday, September 28, 2012

Check out

Check out this website. 
This website on home design, decorating and renovating has it all. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Royal LePage, Genworth Canada announce strategic relationship

Royal LePage, Genworth Canada announce strategic relationship
Royal LePage has a new strategic relationship with mortgage insurer Genworth Canada.  The idea is to better equip agents for conversations around how much their clients can afford and what options are available to them.
The relationship makes educational resources available to the Royal LePage network on mortgage insurance, energy-efficient refunds, homeowner assistance programs and discounts at select retailers across Canada.  It also covers details on government incentive programs, which run the gamut from saving for a home to tax credits and rebate programs. These resources, combined with the advice and guidance of lenders and mortgage professionals, help further enable responsible homeownership, the companies say.
 “We are a full service real estate company and Genworth is a premium brand, so this strategic relationship is a great marriage,” says Phil Soper, president and CEO of Royal LePage Canada.  “The sharing of insights between Genworth Canada and Royal LePage will serve to better equip our agents to present options to their clients around affordability.”
Changes to the amortization rules around high-ratio mortgages implemented in July might lead some first-time buyers to think they can’t afford a home yet. However, the relationship provides resources and information to help agents educate homebuyers, adding to the value they bring as a full service Royal LePage Realtor, the company says.
“First-time buyers are looking for more from their Realtor than help finding a new home,” says Debbie McPherson, senior vice-president, sales and marketing at Genworth Canada. “Helping Royal LePage keep their clients well-informed on the options around responsible homeownership will, in turn, help them to better service their clients.”

Friday, September 21, 2012

Census: Montreal has an abundance of people living alone

Census: Montreal has an abundance of people living alone


Read more:

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

A new perspective on closing the cottage.

Cottage Closure Got You Down? 

A New Perspective on Closing the Cottage 
As fall approaches and the cool weather and shorter days arrive, cottage owners will sadly anticipate the end of cottage season. For many, shutting down their summer sanctuary is a double dose of bad news - not only do lazy days on the dock disappear but they are quickly replaced with the labour required to close the cottage properly.
Fortunately, many cottage owners are beating the blues by celebrating the end of cottage season with a "let's make a good situation out of a bad one" attitude - a sentiment that has become as common in cottage country as Muskoka chairs and mosquito repellent. Many cottagers are inviting guests to celebrate in a "less is more" type of atmosphere during their last days of rural rest. Visitors are sitting on moving boxes and using candles for electricity as they congregate and reminisce about the "unusual amount of mosquitoes" and "Johnny's first swim". For many, this last gathering makes the impending move back to the city a little more bearable.
It's also the perfect opportunity to swindle that neighbour into helping you budge the boat into the garage and the barbeque into the SUV - just two of many essential and equally annoying tasks to complete each autumn. Some imperative and tedious chores that can be completed without your neighbour's help include the draining of plumbing systems and shutting down the electricity. Ensuring that pipes are properly drained will avoid water freezing over, which can lead to flooding in the cottage. To properly drain the system, empty and clean all pipes, valves, tanks and pumps. When shutting off electricity, be sure to first turn off all major appliances as well as the water heater and electrical room heaters. When the time comes to re-open your cottage again, the start-up will be much smoother and safer.
If you're a long-time cottage owner, you know that vermin will do as much as your in-laws to get an invitation to your cottage. For this reason, go beyond hiding food and blocking entrances. Try leaving mothballs or whole cloves as both can discourage unwelcome rodents.
Rodents of another type that need to be discouraged from entering cottages in the off-season are thieves. The ideal tools to combat these seasonal stealers are alarm systems, which have become increasingly common in cottages. A more cost effective approach to security is keeping valuables, such as TV's, out of sight. There are also many companies that specialize in cottage protection that will send employees to your property weekly to ensure its safety. And while these chores may be monotonous - remember next summer is just around the corner!

Luxury for less

Home is where your heart is......

Luxury for Less
Just because you are on a budget, doesn’t mean you have to compromise on style in your home.  If it’s time to refresh your décor but you don’t think you have the necessary funds, think again.  Here are a few ways you can add a touch of luxury to any room of your home without breaking the bank:
Start with the walls
No room of your home can ever feel luxurious if the paintwork is shabby or wallpaper looks dull or weathered.  A new coat of paint or wallpaper is the fastest, and easiest way to a fresh new look.  If painting, consider a suede, satin or cashmere finish in a neutral colour for a look of elegance.  If wallpapering, consider rich colours, textures or traditional patterns. Use good quality products for best results. 
Liven up the living room  
Add an instant touch of lavishness with one or two large cushions in rich embroidered fabric, velvet or faux fur.  Add warmth to your wood floors with a shag rug for modern décor, Turkish or Oriental style for more traditional tastes.  No need to splurge on new lamps, simply update the shades with linen or silk-like material.  Give a favourite piece of furniture a makeover with updated sleek metal hardware or repaint with an attractive gloss paint.
Beautify bedrooms & bathrooms 
Buy beautiful bed linen when it is on sale.  Billowy comforters or duvets with plenty of plump pillows make the whole room look luxurious and inviting.  A plush rug for stepping in and out of bed gives a sumptuous start and end to your day.  Add plenty of thick fresh towels and large pillar candles in the bathroom to set a pampered scene. Invest in light switch dimmers to create the ambiance you desire.
Get chic in the kitchen
Freshen up cabinetry with new paint or modern hardware and update lighting fixtures.  Buy a beautiful tablecloth or table runner and top it off with a potted orchid in an attractive pot.  Rather than using every day chipped or stained mugs, treat yourself to a couple of fine china tea cups from a thrift store or good quality coffee mugs for your favourite brew.  Then sit back, enjoy tea for two with a friend, and truly savour the moment.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Your Local Journal - pages 15 & 17

Check out this week's Your Local Journal, page 15 & 17.

Sunday, August 19, 2012


Testimonial from one of our clients and friend!

Diane and Paul Laflamme are excellent realtors. Their honest personality and professionalism, hard work and attention to detail will bring success to you whether you are selling or buying a home.  I found that their extra personal touch facilitated the sale of my home.  They are a pleasure to know.
Shelley Lamonde
February 2012

Monday, July 23, 2012

42 Rollinet, NDIP is sold!!


42 Rollinet, Notre-Dame-de-l'Ile-Perrot
This adorable family home just sold for 99% of asking price!
Seller's are thrilled!
Good luck to Karen and Mark! 
May your new life in Calgary be a wonderful adventure!


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Where are the blueberries?

Fake blueberries -got to see this one!*

We know that real blueberries are full  of antioxidantsbut look at what  several BIG food companies are doing  to make for huge profits. Quite the  video. Isn't this something?

Check out this link.   

                            Click here:  

2012 Royal LePage Recreational Property Report

Royal LePage Canada released the 2012 Recreational Property Report. This report, released annually, provides an overview of trends, prices and activity in recreational property and cottage markets across Canada.
The press release, entitled “Canadian Recreational Property Buyers Looking To Renters To Make Dream Of Ownership A Reality,” can be viewed here.

To view the full report, click here.


To view the report price summary, click here.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day!

Enjoy your day!

104 Ch de l'Ile, Ile-Cadieux - Sold!

104 Ch de l'Ile, Ile-Cadieux
Listed at $889,000
Sold in 55 days!
Diane & Paul Laflamme
Royal LePage Village

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

International sales continue to climb in the U.S. market

NAR: International sales continue to climb in U.S. market
WASHINGTON (June 11, 2012) – Due to low prices and the relative weakness of the dollar, international buyers continue to identify the U.S. as a desirable place to own property and make a profitable investment.

According to the National Association of Realtors® 2012 Profile of International Home Buying Activity, total residential international sales in the U.S. for the past year ending March 2012 equaled $82.5 billion, up from $66.4 billion in 2011. Total international sales were evenly split between non-resident foreigners and recent immigrants.

The survey asked Realtors® to report their international business activity within the U.S. for the 12 months ending March 2012.

“Today’s advantageous market conditions have drawn more and more foreign buyers to the U.S. in recent years, signaling how desirable and profitable owning property in this country can be,” said NAR President Moe Veissi, broker-owner of Veissi & Associates Inc. in Miami and 2002 president of Florida Realtors®. “Low housing prices, a good inventory condition and increased buying power with today’s exchange rates help attract international clients.

“Foreign buyers also have the advantage of working with a Realtor. Realtors who specialize in serving international clientele have a truly global perspective; they know what hurdles foreign buyers face when purchasing property in the U.S., and have the expertise and knowledge that comes from working with clients from different cultures and real estate practices.”

International buyers bought homes throughout the country, but four states accounted for 51 percent of the purchases – Florida, California, Texas and Arizona. Florida has been the fastest growing destination of choice, accounting for 26 percent of foreign purchases. California was second with 11 percent and Texas and Arizona accounted for seven percent.

Proximity to the home country, the presence of relatives and friends, the convenience of air transportation, and climate and location are all important considerations to prospective foreign buyers. Locations on the East Coast generally attract European buyers, while Asian buyers tend to purchase on the West Coast, particularly California.

Florida attracts a diverse set of international buyers including South Americans, Europeans and Canadians.

Meanwhile, Texas remains popular among Mexican buyers. Within markets in an individual state, it is not unusual to find concentrations of people grouped by nationality.

“Foreign buyers recognize that owning a home in the U.S. has many benefits, both financial and social,” said Veissi. “Many purchase property as an investment, vacation home or to diversify their portfolio. In addition, many recent immigrants view homeownership as an important accomplishment. They believe that being a homeowner is one of many ways they become established in the U.S. and attain stability, security and a sense of community.”

International buyers came from all over the globe, but Canada, China (The People’s Republic of China including Hong Kong), Mexico, India and the United Kingdom accounted for 55 percent of all international transactions, according to the survey. Canada and China remain the fastest-growing home countries. Canada accounted for 24 percent of international sales while China accounted for 11 percent, up from nine percent in 2011. Mexico was third with eight percent of sales and India and the U.K. both accounted for six percent.

Forty-five percent of international purchases were under $250,000. In addition, there appears to be a gradual increasing trend toward purchases in the $250,000 to $500,000 price range. In 2012, this range accounted for 30 percent of purchases, up from 28 percent in 2011. The average price paid by an international buyer was $400,000 compared to the overall U.S. average of $212,000.

Several reasons account for why the average international home price is higher than the average overall price. The international client is typically wealthier than the domestic buyer and is looking for a property in a specialized niche, for example, a larger property suitable for multi-generational living or a property that establishes the individual’s presence and standing in the community.

Many homes purchased by foreign buyers are used as a primary residence. Vacation and rental use are also major reasons for a purchase. More than half – 66 percent – of survey respondents reported international buyers purchased detached single-family homes. About half of international buyers, 52 percent, preferred to buy in a suburban area and about a quarter, 23 percent, bought in a central city/urban area.

Sixty-two percent of international purchases were all cash, which has increased since 2007. International buyers still experience many financing challenges when purchasing a home in the U.S.

In fact, among transactions that failed, Realtors reported that in 26 percent of the cases financing issues were the problem. The difficulties facing foreign buyers in trying to obtain a mortgage include lack of U.S.-based credit history and hurdles in meeting mortgage requirements. Other reasons for not purchasing properties were cost/taxes/insurance and immigration laws.

Twenty-seven percent of Realtors reported having worked with international clients this year. Fifty-two percent of Realtors reported that international transactions accounted for one to 10 percent of their total transactions, while 27 percent reported that they made up more than 10 percent of total transactions. Realtor specialization on the buyer’s side of the market – such as foreign language capabilities, cultural affinity or orientation with the prospective purchaser and experience in explaining the U.S. real estate – appear to be important in working with foreign buyers.
© 2012 Florida Realtors®

Ronald M. Chazan
Licensed Real Estate Broker Associate
Licensed Mortgage Broker & Consultant
(561) 479-1446

Friday, June 8, 2012

1146 Rue des Sittelles is Sold!

1146 Rue des Sittelles, Saint-Lazare
Listed at $365,000
Sold in 45 days!

Paul & Diane Laflamme
Agents immobilier
Royal LePage Village
Hudson bureau - 450.458.5365
Dollard des Ormeaux - 514.684.1141
Cell Paul - 514.793.4514


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

New show builds on trend of single, female buyers

 New show builds on trend of single, female buyers


Single women are saying "I do" to mortgages.
"No man. No dual income. No problem," is the tag line of the new HGTV show Buy Herself, which documents the increasing trend of women buying homes solo.
Host Sandra Rinomato, a certified real estate broker, author of Realty Check: The Real Scoop on Real Estate and award-winning Canadian entrepreneur, says women are investing in property with or without a partner.
It's a trend that's certainly being seen in the nation's capital. In 2009, the majority of singles making first-time purchases in Ottawa were women aged 25-30, according to the most recent First-Time Homebuyers' Report by Royal LePage.
"Women are buying real estate because they equate it with financial security," says Rinomato.
Growing up, she didn't think of her financial future.
"I was raised as a young, Italian girl to think that the man was going to take care of all that stuff."
But after her first marriage ended, she became a certified real estate agent and realized owning her own house was a realistic goal. "I didn't think that a failed marriage was something that I had to use as a road block. I didn't want it to stop me from carrying on with my life."
So she made a bold decision to buy a house by herself. Now, years later, Rinomato owns four houses with her new husband and one on her own.
Leo Maiorino, a mortgage agent at Mortgage Brokers Ottawa, says single women fit into the real estate market today just as well as anyone else.
"The demographic has changed in terms of employment and getting out into the workforce ... You have a lot more major breadwinners amongst females out in the corporate world," he says, adding that the number of single female buyers has certainly increased since he entered the business 27 years ago.
Another Royal LePage report, focusing on female buyers in Canada, found that in 2007, 30 per cent of single women were homeowners, as well as 45 per cent of divorced or separated women and 64 per cent of widowed women.
Maiorine says it's much easier for men and women alike to get a mortgage today because mortgage insurance companies such as Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. allow people to take out a mortgage with a smaller down-payment.
"When I first started, people needed to have a 25-per-cent down payment - now they can buy a property with as little as five-per-cent down," he says.
The smaller down payment is not the only factor contributing to good buying opportunities in Ottawa.
Ron Desjardins is vice-president at PMA Brethour Realty Group, a real estate firm that works with builders in Ottawa and Toronto. He says the real estate market in the nation's capital doesn't suffer from the boom-bust cycle that most major cities endure.
"In Ottawa we're like the Rock of Gibraltar - we have a market that is very, very stable."
Ottawa also benefits from the country's current low interest rates and the First-Time Home Buyers' Tax Credit, which can be claimed by anyone who bought their first home after Jan. 27, 2009. In 2011, this tax credit could have been up to $750.
Desjardins says the plethora of opportunity has been recognized by some Ottawa builders, who now target single buyers in product, location and pricing. Traditionally, single buyers in Ottawa have looked into condos inside the Greenbelt. The central location is convenient and condominiums offer a safe and maintenance-free opportunity for young adults.
But Desjardins points to condo flats and stacked condos now being built in suburbs such as Barrhaven. He notes that buyers are often young, single women looking for a home in a familiar neighbourhood.
"They can get into that suburban condo product at a more moderate price point and they're close to their parents for Sunday dinners," he says.
Young women are buying property across the country, but Ottawa offers an advantage, he says. "We are a white-collar town - We create lots of opportunity here in Ottawa for well-educated professional women to get very good paying jobs, which gives them a better opportunity, if they're so motivated, to make an investment in purchasing real estate."
Maiorino doesn't see a lot of men buying a house independently; more common is a few single men collaborating together to sign a mortgage. He rarely sees this collaboration with women.
Erica Lychak, 30, recently bought a townhome in Nepean. She says she had always assumed taking out a mortgage on her own wasn't possible, but changed her mind once she did some research. After renting a one-bedroom apartment in the west end for four years, Lychak decided to make the "scary" transition from renter to owner.
"As you live in a place longer, your rent increases and it got to the point that the rent payment was equal to, if not slightly more than, what a mortgage payment might be," she says.
Lychak, who is a financial services officer at the Business Development Bank of Canada, says buying a house with one income was daunting, but exciting.
"I look at short-term pain for longterm gain," she says. "You're putting in now for the longer-term investment."
For Rinomato, as a real estate agent and broker in Toronto, she worked with a variety of female clients who were buying property on their own. These women inspired Buy Herself.
Viewers first saw Rinomato as host on the popular HGTV series Property Virgins, where she assisted first-time home buyers in the real estate process. Now, Rinomato is offering her advice to single woman. It's fun, she says, because the women don't need to compromise with a partner.
But Rinomato warns that a buyer's wish-list can get them into trouble. Buyers have to be realistic about their needs, wants and budget and she often has clients who want extra space just for holidays or other celebrations.
"I think you really need to analyse truthfully what your lifestyle is; what property will suit your need 99 per cent of the time."
And there is one thing a buyer should never sacrifice, she says - location.
"Location affects your lifestyle so much and people sometimes underestimate it for the sake of getting that extra bedroom or a den. Sacrifices should come in space on the interior, because people always overestimate what they really need."
Rinomato hopes her new show is fun, informative and gives people the confidence they need to invest in property, whether it be with a partner, friends or individually.

Buy Herself airs Mondays at 10 p.m. on HGTV.

Friday, May 18, 2012

16 Million Girls Foundation

60 Million Girls Foundation Fundraiser
May 17, 2012
Summerlea Golf and Country Club

Last night I attended a fundraiser to raise money for "60 Million Girls Foundation". The Sonia Balazovjech Dance Company put on an amazing dance show. It is truly inspiring to see such young talent. Thank you to my dear friend Liz for inviting me. It was so nice to reconnect with Heather and Joyce. I truly enjoyed your company. Thank you from the bottom of my heart and count me in for next year.
Empowering girls and women through education.

The facts behind the statistics.

There are an estimated 60 million girls around the world who do not attend primary school. 

Basic literacy and numeracy skills are the fundamental tools that will enable girls and women, as well as boys and men, to take hold of their lives and develop solutions adapted to the needs of their communities and country.

Research convincingly shows that programs directed to the education of girls are more effective than virtually any other community investment in the developing world.

Basic quality education provides girls with access to health and nutrition information for themselves and their families - including helping to prevent the transmission of HIV/AIDS. It provides a safe place to grow as they learn. It gives them the knowledge to provide economic support to their family. It delays marriage and pregnancy, thereby lowering infant and maternal mortality. And an educated woman is more likely to send her children - both boys and girls - to school, thereby increasing the likelihood of future generations receiving an education.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

2 Open Houses-Sunday, May 20th

104 Ch de l'Ile, Ile-Cadieux
MLS 8736713
Visite Libre
Dimanche, 20 mai
2-4 hrs.

2560 Julien, Saint-Lazare
MLS 8617843
Open House, Sunday, May 20th
2:00 - 4:00 p.m.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Curb Appeal

How to Improve Curb Appeal

Home Selling Advice to Help You Attract Potential Buyers

A large percentage of home buyers decide whether or not to look inside a house or take it seriously based on its curb appeal—the view they see when they drive by or arrive for a showing. You can help make sure they want to come inside your house by spending some time working on the its exterior appearance.
It's difficult to look at our own house in the same way that potential home buyers do, because when we become accustomed to the way something looks and functions, we can't see its faults. Decide right now to stop thinking of the property as a home. It's a house—a commodity you want to sell for the highest dollar possible.

Curb Appeal Exercise

The next time you come home, stop across the street or far enough down the driveway to get a good view of the house and its surroundings.
  1. What is your first impression of the house and yard area?
  2. What are the best exterior features of the house or lot? How can you enhance them?
  3. What are the worst exterior features of the house or lot? How can you minimize or improve them?
Park where a potential buyer would and walk towards the house, looking around you as if it were your first visit. Is the approach clean and tidy? What could you do to make it more attractive?
Take photos of the home's exterior. If you have a digital camera, view the color versions first, then remove the color and look at it in black and white, because it's easier to see problems when color isn't around to affect our senses.
Make a list of the problem areas you discovered. Tackle clean up and repair chores first, then put some time into projects that make the grounds more attractive.

  • Kill mold and mildew on the house, sidewalks, roof, or driveway.
  • Stow away unnecessary garden implements and tools.
  • Clean windows and gutters.
  • Pressure wash dirty siding and dingy decks.
  • Edge sidewalks and remove vegetation growing between concrete or bricks.
  • Mow the lawn. Get rid of weeds.
  • Rake and dispose of leaves, even if your lot is wooded.
  • Trim tree limbs that are near or touching the home's roof.

Don't Forget the Rear View

Buyers doing a drive by will try their best to see your back yard. If it's visible from another street or from someone's driveway, include it in your curb appeal efforts.

Evening Curb Appeal

Do your curb appeal exercise again at dusk, because it isn't unusual for potential buyers to drive by houses in the evening.
One quick way to improve evening curb appeal is with lighting:

  • String low voltage lighting along your driveway, sidewalks, and near important landscaping elements.
  • Add a decorative street lamp or an attractive light fixture to a front porch.
  • Make sure lighting that's visible through front doors and windows enhances the home's appearance.

Landscaping Decisions

There are times that adding elements to your landscaping can improve curb appeal, but there are other times when removing something is even more effective.
For example, we had a listing for a large brick house with large white columns. Tall evergreens, planted in front of each column, had grown taller than the roof. They obscured the columns and windows and made it difficult to see the front of the house.
We suggested that the owner remove them. She trimmed them back, but it didn't do the trick—they were unattractive and still kept potential buyers from seeing the true character of the house.
I sold the house to a couple who could see past the trees. One of their first tasks after closing was to yank them out of the ground, instantly boosting the home's curb appeal.
Most buyers cannot visualize changes, and often won't take a second look at a house if the first look doesn't appeal to them. Home buyers who can visualize changes, and are prepared to make them, expect you to reduce the price of the house to compensate for the work they plan to do.

A Few Curb Appeal Tips

  • If you can budget it, a fresh paint job does wonders for a dingy house. Drive around your town to find color schemes that are appealing.
  • Install a more attractive front door, maybe something with leaded glass inserts.
  • If you can't justify the cost of a new door, consider replacing plain doorknob hardware with something more attractive.
  • If new hardware is beyond your budget, repaint or stain the door and polish the hardware?
If you brainstorm, you'll find that there's a solution to most problems—one that lets you stay within your budget. The trick is to find the areas where improvements are needed, then work on them as best you can.

Paul and Diane Laflamme

Diane Laflamme
Courtier Immobilier
Royal LePage Village
4000 Saint-Jean, DDO

Paul Laflamme
Courtier Immobilier
Royal LePage Village
472B Main Road, Hudson

Monday, May 7, 2012