Calgary News, Events & Local Insights about Calgary - Justin Havre's Blog

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7 Questions to Ask When Looking for a Security Installer in CalgaryWhether you want to protect your home, office, shop, warehouse, or any other space, the most secure option is to install a modern security system.

These days, with such extreme advancements in technology in recent years, finding the right access control company for your security can be easier said than done. To make the decision a little easier, here are some questions that you should consider when choosing the right security system for your needs, as well as the right installer in the Calgary area.

What Is Your Budget?

Ultimately, you may be restricted in your options by your budget, but security systems do come in a variety of service plans and configurations.

Nevertheless, determining your budget is a great place to start to filter your…

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How an Outdated Kitchen May Cost You Time and MoneyHomebuyers form their initial impression from the home's exterior, but what's the first thing they want to see once they go inside? Most of the time, it's the kitchen.

You can put as much energy as you want into gardening tips to increase curb appeal, but if the house has an old, outdated, or dingy kitchen, many buyers will look no further. If the kitchen isn't up to snuff, the home may sit unsold on the market no matter what other great features it has. Sellers that are avoiding kitchen upgrades might be losing time and money. Keep reading to learn why updating a kitchen can improve the home selling process.

Kitchens Sell Homes

When I ask buyers which rooms convinced them to buy a particular home, there's one overwhelmingly popular answer:…

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How to Handle Calgary Snow Removal Like a ProfessionalWinter in Calgary is a beautiful time of year, with snow gently blanketing our trees, lawns, and rooftops. Unfortunately, the snow also covers our sidewalks and driveways. If left unchecked, it can be a daunting task to remove. Keep reading to find the best snow removal tips from Steve Hyde of FT Property Services.

Use the Right Snow Removal Tools

An essential tool for snow removal is a quality snow shovel. There are many different types of shovels in an assortment of designs and materials. Curved blade shovels are best for pushing snow. Scoop-shaped shovels with sides are great for lifting and tossing snow to a new location. Ideally, it’s good to have one of both.

When it comes to material, shovels with metal blades are strong and able to…

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By Justin Havre

Lawn maintenance in Calgary may seem like an afterthought for many people. But if you think mowing your lawn, killing the weeds, and sprucing up the shrubs is a less-than enjoyable Saturday, let me tell you, there is a large financial incentive to lawn care — and I do mean very large.

How Neglecting Your Lawn Can Cost You Thousands

We’ve all heard that “curb appeal” is an important factor in a home’s resale value. It’s true, more true than many people realize. In fact, a joint study by the University of Texas at Arlington and the University of Alabama found that high curb appeal can increase a home’s resale value by 7%. This increases to 14% in competitive real estate markets, according to the study. The real estate market in Calgary is highly competitive, as we’ve seen home…

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Average Cost of Different Renovation ProjectsRenovations can go a long way in boosting the appeal of a home for resale. Buyers today are typically attracted to modern, contemporary, new features and move-in-ready homes or properties. When buyers see a home that needs renovation, they envision unexpected costs and a whole lot of work. This is why many sellers choose to renovate (or "flip") their homes before the sale, so they can get top dollar themselves and find those buyers who are ready to pay for a move-in-ready home. However, before a homeowner tackles a big renovation project, they should distinguish between their “must-haves” and “nice-to-haves” to clarify priorities. This can help them determine the budget for their desired upgrades. Here are some things homeowners should know about the…

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How to Clean and Maintain Homes With PetsNo matter how cute they are and how much we love them, pets can be dirty!

Cleaning with a pet can be something of an art. Whether a pet owner is selling their home, preparing for an open house, or hosting an event, a clean home increases hospitality and lowers stress. Here are some of the best ways to clean your home when you live with a pet, welcome a new furry family member, or make your home more pet-friendly. From last-minute cleans to preventative measures, we have you covered.

For informational purposes only. Always consult with a licensed real estate professional before proceeding with any real estate transaction.

Protect Floors from Messes

Use indoor/outdoor rugs or carpet tiles. Indoor-outdoor rugs are available in various colours,…

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Gardening and Lawn Care TipsMany people take pride in having a healthy and beautiful lawn, and it's a fun and creative hobby for many. Maintaining your yard also enhances curb appeal and plays a role in a buyerʼs interest in the property. However, due to changing weather conditions, gardening in Alberta takes planning and diligent tending. Fortunately, there are many ways to have a healthy yard without using pesticides.

Cosmetic pesticides are restricted in many communities across Canada. This means that you canʼt use pesticides on your lawn for cosmetic purposes, and it's recommended that you only use products authorized by Health Canada. Always check your lawn and garden frequently for pests and other problems to nip them early on.

Regardless of what kind of gardener you…

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Top Ideas for DIY Home Improvement ProjectsThinking of selling your home, but it's looking a little outdated? Or wanting to freshen up the interior or exterior on a budget? Simple Do-it-yourself (DIY) home improvement projects aren't as bad as they sound—or as difficult! All you need is a little imagination and maybe some Pinterest inspiration photos.

For informational purposes only. Always consult with a licensed real estate professional before proceeding with any real estate transaction.

First Impressions Are Everything

A home's curb appeal starts at the front door. What a prospective buyer sees is either quality and style or nothing at all. A project like changing the front door's colour or even replacing the door can make a huge difference. Even changing the door's hardware can…

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Life Insurance ResearchAfter months of house hunting, you’ve just bought your first home, and you’re over the moon about it. Finally, a place you can call your own! But before you can get settled, you need to get a few things in order—namely, your insurance.

What would happen if you passed away before your mortgage was paid off? Who would be responsible for those payments? If you have a family, you might worry that they could default on the mortgage, and suddenly have no place to live.

To find the best life insurance policy in Canada, it pays to do your research first. There are a few different types of insurance to brush up on before you make your decision. We’ve put together this guide to help new homeowners in Calgary find a policy that meets their needs:

For…

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Questions You Should Ask Your Real Estate AgentYou've been saving for a down payment, planning to buy your first home, and now it's time to pick a real estate agent. As a homebuyer, you want to pick a fair and honest agent and protect your financial interests. Buying a home is likely one of the largest investments you'll make, and it's important to choose a real estate agent whom you can trust to get the job done right, with your best interests in mind.

When choosing a real estate agent, here are 10 questions that you should ask them before you sign on the dotted line.

For informational purposes only. Always consult with a licensed real estate professional before proceeding with any real estate transaction.

What Homebuyers Should Ask Their Agents

  1. How long have you been in real…

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