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5 Great Things About Deep Cove

5 Great Things About Deep Cove

The Backdrop of Mountains and Ocean Bleed Into Your Soul

Deep Cove is a hidden gem nestled at the very eastern edge of North Vancouver. An Oasis of a neighbourhood that has transformed immensely over the years. I’m telling you that there must be something in the water here. It’s not a legendary tale or myth, but a true story of those from here. Deep Cove has bred some truly talented and famous people, from NHL hockey players to Olympic Athletes.  The reason being is what Deep Cove has just in its backyard. The backdrop of mountains and ocean bleed into your soul.

So by now Deep Cove is no secret, just try going there on a beautiful sunny weekend day in the summer. Good luck at finding any parking, unless you have friends or family here. It is truly a crazy, busy place during this time of year. But that’s not the only time of year it’s busy. It seems that what Deep Cove has to offer is something that people want all year around.

I could talk about 5 things just in my below list of Usual Suspects. But this area has so much more to offer, some that only the locals know and some that deserve to be spoken about. So instead of just focusing on what every other blog will talk about.

Let’s also talk about the other things that make Deep Cove truly special.

1. The Usual Suspects 

  • Quarry Rock – An nice little hike that has a great payoff at the end. A view that overlooks the Cove and the Marina. There’s a reason that it’s hard to find parking when visiting Deep Cove, this is one of the major culprits. On any given weekend you will see the hoards of people flocking here to make this a part of their day. It really is a great hike, great for those who don’t want anything crazy and intense like the Grouse Grind. But also those who want to run up and down as exercise or take their dog for a good little outing. Be sure to leash your pet at the top, their noses will guide them to everyones treats and into some trouble with the cliffs.
  • Deep Cove Kayak – Perfectly placed within the sheltered waters of Deep Coves Inlet at Panorama Park. You will have the chance to rent a Kayak, stand up paddle board (SUP) or canoe. Then venture up Indian Arm, 25 km of water surrounded by mountains, scattered with secluded beaches and islands.
  • Honey’s Doughnuts – A charming hidden gem of a spot. Well, not really hidden at all, try walking by it on a sunny summer day. The crowds of people will make you want to check out whats going on. The doughnuts in hands will make your mouth water and soon you will find yourself in line. This is a must stop spot, especially after a hike up Quarry Rock or a walk around the water.
  • The Raven – Those who know, know of The Raven. The pub hosting locals for generations, is a staple for Deep Cove. It’s a 100% chance that you will run into someone you know here if you grew up in Deep Cove. The local watering hole that all Deep Cove residents have grown up with is about to change dramatically. As some major development is coming but The Raven will stay, it just will be moved down to the corner. The very corner that’s the gateway to Deep Cove. Do yourself a favour and get there now, order a pizza and a pint.
  • Deep Cove Brewers and Distillers – It’s no secret that the Craft Beer industry has taken over Vancouver. So where better to have a brewery than Deep Cove. Now this isn’t based in Deep Cove but rather a short distance away, still in North Vancouver. A great stop to have some food, beer and even spirits. As they too are a distillery and make their own Gin and Vodka. If there on the weekend you’ll be surprised with some live music.

2. Mount Seymour

Deep Cove residents are serious spoiled when it comes to nature and all its benefits. Here’s a list of some of my favourite spots to venture. Now the mountain in question here is Mount Seymour, located near Deep Cove in North Vancouver. A local ski hill that has so many other benefits to offer. Some for summer, some for winter.

  • The Trails – There are too many trails to mention. Whether you are a mountain biker, hiker or trail runner. This is where you must visit and explore. Just get up to the top of this mountain and see where the trails take you. You will even find some great trailheads along your way up.
  • Dog Mountain – Okay so I get it, you started reading the portion above and it went nowhere. You ask yourself why doesn’t he at least mention one trail to explore. So here we are, Dog Mountain is a must hike. Whether in the summer or winter. The beauty of this trail is its great all year round. Amazing trail to take your dog on, and when you get to the top the pay off is huge. At least as long as it’s a clear day. An amazing view of the city below and views that extend forever.
  • Mystery Lake – This took me 20 years to find. It actually took a Deep Cove local (My Wife) to tell me about it. Sure it’s called Mystery Lake, but it’s no longer a mystery to many. But in the summer this is a great swimming hole, one that’s made for hanging out with friends, family and your dog. A short hike from the parking lot at the top of Mount Seymour.

3. Northlands Golf Course

  • Northlands Golf Course – This is must on any golfers list, one of the best courses Vancouver has to offer. At the fingertips of Deep Cove locals and showcasing all that North Vancouver has. Set in the mountains and tough terrain, a challenging but fun course. One that will make you come back again and again. Do yourself a favour, get a golf cart or at least a pull cart. Nothing worse than wasting all your energy on a sore back after hauling your clubs on this course. Trust me, I’ve been there and done that for you.

4. The Ocean

The true beauty of Deep Cove and what it truly has is the Ocean that surrounds it. Get yourself out there someway, somehow. Rent a paddle board or kayak. Maybe if you are one of the lucky ones you have access to a boat. Either way be sure to explore one or more of these options below.

  • Jug Island – A short paddle away but a great payoff at the end. You will approach Jug Island if you head straight out from the Deep Cove Marina. Once you are there, head across to the adjacent beach and have yourself a picnic. It’s here that your mind will be blown that you are actually now at Belcarra Park, Port Moody. Port Moody?! Yup, that’s right Port Moody is this close to Deep Cove.
  • Twin Islands – This is about double the distance of Jug Island away from the marina. But a great location to call your hub. You can even camp overnight here and will probably see one of the local cliff jumping into the ocean. Do so at your own risk but you must make this one of your stops when put in the water. Hike around the island, it’s really a small island but a great time to be had.
  • Granite Falls – Located 18km up Indian Arm from Deep Cove Marina. I would recommend boating to this but it can be done in a kayak. You’ll want to camp when you get here if done this way. But these waterfalls are awesome, flowing hundreds of feet down a rock fdace. Truly a must if you can find a way to get here.
  • Cates Park – Really a location that most would drive to but a good spot none the less. A ton of different beaches spread across this park and if you find yourself on the water. This is a family fun park to picnic at or pick up a friend while on the water. Odds are you’ll see a movie being filmed here at any given time.

5. The Village of Deep Cove

The Village of Deep Cove has so much to offer on its own. A village full of mom and pop boutique shops like Cafe Orso for your coffee fix. Also shops like Room 6 which is full of little special things you would love or love to give as a gift.

Deep Cove embodies a cabin like lifestyle with a year round setting that’s been built by the locals over generations. You will find yourself wanting more and in fact probably checking out local listings. Reconsidering where you live and thinking maybe, just maybe I can afford a place here.

Trust me when I tell you that this is a great neighbourhood to raise a family. Even better for the kids as they grow up with this as their backyard.

Lucas McCann is an Realtor with the G+D Real Estate Team. A 2017 President’s Club Team (Top 1% of Realtors in Greater Vancouver.

Let me know if you are looking to have any questions answered.

Contact Me at lucas@gdrealestate.ca

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Should I Buy Before I Sell?!

Should I Buy Before I Sell?!

This is an age-old debate. It comes up all the time. You are already in the Real Estate market and now you are looking for a new home. Maybe it’s time to upgrade in the market from a condo to a townhouse. Maybe it’s time to change neighbourhoods as your kids are about to head to school. Whatever the case, when you get to this point you are going to ask if you should buy before you sell.

The true answer to this age-old debate depends on some key factors. Like if you are in a hot market, say you own a condo in Vancouver and are buying a detached house. Odds are that your condo, if priced right and staged well. Plus a key marketing plan, it should have a multiple offer situation and probably in the first weekend on the market.

This is when it’s good to know the market and its trends. As with this scenario, you may be comfortable finding that new house first. Then put your condo up right away afterwards. Here’s some tips and info that may help a bit. But always remember to consult your professional Realtor. They can help you along the way.

Why You May Want to Buy Before Selling:

  • Find That True Dream Home – if you don’t have to sell right here right now, the ball is in your court. Meaning that you can literally spend months or years searching for your dream home. That could be a good thing or an excuse that helps you procrastinate.
  • Buying first can make the house hunting experience more enjoyable – Without a closing date looming on your existing home, you’ll have time to wait until the right home comes up for sale. It can also be less stressful knowing that if your offer is unsuccessful, you have time to wait for the next opportunity to come up.
  • Time for Renovations – having the luxury to replace the electrical and kitchen while you aren’t living in your new home can be a godsend, especially if you have young children
  • You can add a condition to any offer you make – In addition to the highly recommended conditions on financing and inspection, you can also make your offer conditional on the sale of your current home. Please keep in mind that it’s worth pointing out this condition will likely make your offer less attractive to the seller because of the uncertainty for them.

Why You May Want to Sell Before Buying:

  • Know exactly how much money you have to spend – as soon as your property is sold, you’ll know how much you have for the down-payment on the new house. That’s a great thing when it comes down to it.
  • Avoid the stress of your house or condo NOT selling – there’s a huge stress load that you need to prepare yourself for when it comes to this. What if your place doesn’t sell right away? Odds are if you were thinking of buying first before you sell. You are going to be super anxious at this point. Maybe avoiding it is a great thing?
  • Avoid bridge financing costs – this is the money the bank lends you to cover the equity in your house when you close on your purchase before sale, i.e. the extra cost of carrying two mortgages temporarily.
  • Declutter Your Life – as with most moves, you’ll be decluttering your life. But if you sell first you’ll now have that chance to sell off some of those items. Maybe you were thinking of that new couch or new kitchen tables. This may the time to do it. Then when you buy that new home you can add new items that make sense to its layout. There are times when you buy before you sell, that you’ve made the closing and possession dates tight. Meaning that you may be packing and moving close to or on the dame day.
  • Sell For More – this is a key element to most peoples life. You’ve gained memories and equity in your current home. You probably want to make some good money off your investment. If you sell first you have the luxury of negotiating terms and getting as much as you can for your place. The stress of buying first sometimes means that you have no choice but to take that first offer.

There is so much more that can be added to this. But for now, this is a good start. If you are ever looking for some answers to your questions. I’m always here to help. Contact me here.

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4 Tips For Millennials Who Want To Buy Real Estate

4 Tips For Millennials Who Want To Buy Real Estate

It’s the world we live in now. The rental market and housing market in the main cities like Toronto and Vancouver are tough. It’s expensive to rent and it’s hard to find a way to buy. But what if you did things just a tad bit different? Then and maybe only then will you be able to find the way to buy that Real Estate you’ve always wanted.

Here are some tips for Millennials who are trying to save a down payment to enter the Real Estate Market. (None of them require you to abandon your 3 coffees a day completely, though of course it may be smart to also do so.)

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5 Great Things About Living in Coquitlam

5 Great Things About Living in Coquitlam

So Let’s Talk About What I Love In The Area.

Coquitlam is by far the largest city in the Tri-Cities and really this list could have 10-20 things on it. So for now in this first part I want to outline the things I love about Coquitlam. I hope you enjoy!

1. Town Centre Park & Lafarge Lake: A 1.2-kilometre trail loops this popular urban lake in Town Centre Park, offering views of both mountains and the city. This is right in the town centre and is home to many sporting events and activities year round. A great place to walk and clear your head while not having to stray too far away to some of the other local trails. Only steps away from the Lafarge Lake Skytrain Station.

‘Tis the season to mark down this event in your calendar. The Lafarge Lake Lights is a free attraction with community engagement, family fun, and plenty of photo opportunities! Follow the path  around the lake and you’ll go through themed light zones.

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This Is Why Your House Isn’t Selling

This Is Why Your House Isn’t Selling

I’ve seen again and again. Most of the time I’m kind of happy when I see it. Cause it means that what we do is 10 times more than other Realtors out there. I get that the market in Vancouver is hot. But that doesn’t mean your agent can take your asset for granted, nor should you let them.

What I mean by that is, so many times I talk to people who are selling their home. They put it up for sale with an agent who doesn’t know the area they are selling. An agent who doesn’t spend any money on marketing your home. An agent who convinces sellers that iPhone photos are good enough.

I’m here to implore you to consider your options. Consider your home and what you truly deserve in the sale of your biggest investment in your life. Here is why your home isn’t selling nor will it sell for what you want it to.

You Have a MARKETING Problem if…

  • Few people are making appointments to see your home.
  • The photos are terrible or non-existent.
  • There is minimal information on your MLS listing: no room measurements, no captivating description of your home.
  • Your agent’s website gets 50 visitors a month and she thinks online marketing means having your house on realtor.ca
  • Your agent doesn’t have a website at all or a social media presence.

You Have a PRICING Problem if…

  • You’re getting lots of showings and no one is making an offer.
  • You’ve received offers from a few Buyers and they are all clustered around the same price (and it’s not your asking price).
  • The market has declined since you listed your house for sale and you haven’t adjusted your price to reflect the new reality.

You Have a SHOWING Problem if…

  • Potential Buyers can’t get in to see your property when it’s convenient for them.
  • You’ve restricted appointment times to 15 minutes with a 12-hour notice period
  • You’re home during the showings.
  • Your agent doesn’t show the property, they just use a lock box and let the buyers agent do all the work.
  • Your agent’s office doesn’t have a receptionist or answering service, so it’s hard for other agents to book appointments.

You Have a STAGING Problem if…

  • People can’t easily understand how the rooms are supposed to be used or how the TV can face the couch.
  • Potential Buyers are too distracted by the clutter and mess to see the house.
  • You don’t stage at all.
  • Your home is completely empty. You or your agent must put some effort into it.

So now that you’ve heard my rant. Let’s ask a simple question, should you use an agent that does any of this? Maybe you should consider an agent that goes above and beyond. Maybe you should consider an amazing team like ours, Garbutt+Dumas Real Estate Team. There’s a reason we sold over 150 homes and had $120,000,000 in sales last year (2017) alone.

Lets talk today and give your most valuable asset the love it deserves.

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5 Great Things About Living in Port Moody

5 Great Things About Living in Port Moody

So Let’s Talk About What I Love About The Area.

Port Moody is a great city to call home and also to visit. It’s comprised of some amazing mom and pop shops, local breweries and restaurants. A great place for families, young and old couples, plus your family pet. You really will fall in love with what it has to offer and probably will be blown away on your first visit. A visit that may have you considering relocation to the suburbs.

1. The Neighbourhood: Port Moody is set up into different sections of hoods and areas. There’s Newport Village, Suter Brook Village, Brewers Row (not technically a hood per say) but I like to call it one, Anmore, Heritage Mountain, Moody Centre and more. But these are the ones I venture to on a regular basis. What I love most about these areas is that each one has its own character. I’ll write more about it soon but for a quick example.

  • Newport Village has a laid back vibe with Brown’s Restaurant (Great summertime patio), Gallaghers Cafe (Be sure to pick up a stamp card for your coffees, Buy 10 get 1 free), Kin’s Market (Fresh Veggies), St. James Well (The perfect local pub, great food and rotating taps), and The Runners Den (An amazing local shoe store for those avid runners).
  • Suter Brook Village has a Thifty Foods (great grocery store, be sure to get a beautiful bouquet of flowers and fresh sushi made on site), Romers Burgers (Great spot to watch the game), Starbucks (There’s another one in Newport Village too), Sango Sushi (best Beef Yaki Soba I’ve had so far in town).
  • Moody Centre has a lot to offer too, but my favourite is the Original’s Café Mexicano (placed in a house, cool atmosphere), Taps & Tacos (amazing happy hour, must try is the Korean Pork Taco), and Rosa’s Cucina Italiana restaurant (Prepare to wait for a table, but a must in Port Moody) plus Gabi & Jules Handmade Pies and Baked Goodness (you must stop and get one, even just a slice…absolutely no excuse).
  • Brewers Row; please read below at number 3.

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5 Tips For Helping You Sell Your Home Fast & For More Money

5 Tips For Helping You Sell Your Home Fast & For More Money

It’s that time in your life where you’ve decided to sell your home. That’s amazing and I truly hope you get exactly what you want. But what if I told you that there are some tricks to help sell your home. Tricks that are actually tips but you get what I’m saying. These tips will help you sell your home fast and for more money. Sure some of these tips are common sense but you would be surprised on how many of these are not utilized. So let’s get into this portion of the writing.

I imagine that if you are reading this and thinking of selling fast. You just want to get to the point.

Here’s a Small List to Help You on Your Journey

1. Hire A Marketing Genius Realtor: Okay so what does this mean exactly. Well what if I told you the one Realtor who has helped you before or is the first person you’ve been referred… is not your guy? It’s true that there are some bad Realtors out there. Ones that don’t have your best interest at heart, ones that are not adapting to the new age of tech.

You need to consider that one Realtor who is also a marketing genius. The one that has his or her pulse on all of todays technology, social media platforms and can think outside the box. So be sure to check out there Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and all others…even SnapChat.

2. Stage, Stage and Stage Your Home: I can personally guarantee that staging your home will sell your home faster and for more money. Now there are different ways to go about this. You can hire a staging company or maybe your Realtor stages for you. This is all dependant on where you are selling but staging is a must.

I get that you love that computer desk or old piano. I get that your couch has been in the family for generations. Great…you can take those with you when you sell. But the buyer who is coming to look at your house is going to judge your place on how it looks from the inside and outside.

So when they walk in to your home you may as well have that perfectly placed painting or photo. That beautiful table and couch. Those perfectly placed accents scattered around. take away any and all distractions and let the buyer in on an experience. One that will have them actually asking to buy the furniture from you in their offer. Seriously…this happens when you stage. Your buyers will make a bigger and better offer and will even try to buy all the furniture and things around. You of course can’t sell it if it’s not your stuff but that goes to show how effective it was.

This will single-handedly be the best thing you can do when selling your home. Even if you use your own stuff, have a professional come in to give you some ideas of what to do and where to put things.

3. Take Professional Photos: Yep…that’s right! Professional photos are a must. I get that your iPhone is the best on the market. That you consider yourself a great photographer. But it is a proven stat that professional Real Estate photos make for a fast sale and drive the value up on your property.

Do not let your Realtor be cheap and make sure that they get professional photos done. A beautiful photo that is perfectly focused instead of blurry speaks a thousand words. Odds are the buyers of your home are looking at these photos online first and judging for themselves whether to come to the Open House or not.

In fact odds are like 100% chance that they are doing that!

4. Have Open Houses: That’s right, have an Open House. It seems like utter common sense but you would be surprised at how many people don’t do them. They’ll go ahead and say stuff like, appointment only or the photos are online. There are Realtors out there that will do everything to convince you not to do an Open House…Seriously they are out there. How they still have a business and are getting business is beyond me.

It’s pretty obvious that by having an Open House and applying all these tips will bring people in to your place. That in turn will have people talking about your place, which will put even more eyes on the sale of your house. This in turn will help you sell fast and for even more money.

Reminder – Be open to all availability for your Realtor to show your home. Even before and after the Open Houses. Some buyers just can’t make it to the Opens that are available.

5. Landscaping: This is a must for any home seller. Even if you are selling a Townhouse or Condo. Make sure that the buyers first impression of the place is amazing. Imagine the difference of a place that has garage outside and haven’t raked up the leaves if it’s the fall. Compared to a perfectly manicured property and mowed lawn. Even if you have a small garden on the patio of your condo, apply this tip. It will work.

Every little detail in selling your home will go above and beyond. Think about using some white little rocks around the plant beds or planting some fresh flowers in the front. This first impression will be in your favour if you do.

So now you know some great tips about how to sell your home fast one for more. Now comes the time that you have a great educated idea of what your home is worth before you apply these.

CLICK HERE to find out what your home is worth.

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10 Mistakes to Avoid When Buying an Investment Property

10 Mistakes to Avoid When Buying an Investment Property

Using your hard-earned money should mean that you do your research when buying an Investment Property. So be sure to do your researchThe goal is to start your portfolio off successfully. I recommend looking outside your area and trust in your Realtor®. They will guide you in the right direction. Almost every prospect requires that you start out low and work your way up. Real estate investments are no different. It’s important to begin with a solid property before finding a challenge. Start out with smaller, cheaper properties that you can afford and look into rents in that area.

If you look in Maple Ridge for example, you can buy a $199,900 property that can bring in $1200 a month in rent. With 20% down you’ll be bringing in a positive cash flow, after mortgage and strata fees are paid. Be it a small return but it’s a return none the less. That’s exactly what you want to be doing, which is making money. So think outside the box and start small. Once you’ve got the hang of it then you can add to your portfolio. In no time you’ll have 5-10 properties and be on the way to financial freedom.

The prices in Greater Vancouver are inflated, so learn other areas in BC. Reason being is that the prices in the surrounding areas are better. Making it easier to get into the market at an affordable price. So instead of buying a $600,000 downtown property, maybe think of investing elsewhere. This is so that you can grow that positive cash flow.

Plenty of challenges accompany the current real estate market. So those who invest in real estate without proper preparation might suffer the negative consequences. If you’re interested in beginning a rental property business…

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Is It Time To Consider Downsizing?

You’ve Thought About It, Is It Now Time To Do It?

You may have spent the last decade or more in your family house. But as time has gone on and the kids are on their own, do you really need that big space anymore? That’s a question that comes up all the time. Maybe it’s time to downsize, cash out and start your next chapter. Whether it be retirement or hobby, maybe you’ve wanted to start doing more things in your spare time. So think about some of these things below, it may help you as you consider this road.

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5 Great Things About Port Coquitlam

5 Great Things About Port Coquitlam

I’ve been doing a lot of recon lately and mainly in the Tri-Cities area. I just wanted to put into perspective some of the great things the “Suburbs” have to offer. The Suburbs that I’m talking about are Port Moody, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam. It’s very important to understand now, right now that the migration has shifted. What I mean by that is people are starting to see that the Tri-Cities are actually really close. We are only 35 minutes to downtown from Port Moody and in some cases even less with Coquitlam. But also Port Coquitlam is only an extra 5-10 minutes on top of that.

The reason I wanted to talk about Port Coquitlam today is that it has a lot to offer. With so many people focus on the other two cities out here, Port Coquitlam is not to be forgotten. The only thing it’s lacking is the SkyTrain, but it has the West Coast Express and you can jump on a bus and be at the SkyTrain in moments. Even drive your car to the Moody Station in Port Moody and park for the day.

Here’s a couple of things going on in Port Coquitlam;

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