Kitchen Renovations, Homes With Dogs, Bidding Wars
Dog on an empty street


Dear David,
I often hear that kitchen renovations offer the best return on investment. How do we spruce up ours on a budget? – Thrifty and Stylish

Dear T&S,

Replacing old, tired counter tops is a great place to start. My recommendation of which type to choose will depend on the value of your home. Avoid mismatched appliances, which can make a kitchen feel dated. If it is in the budget, consider replacing basic appliances with mid-range stainless steel to immediately boost the “wow” factor. A fresh coat of paint does wonders. Have your walls (and possibly even your cabinets) professionally re-painted in a fresh, neutral shade. If your hardware is losing its luster, switching out handles and drawer pulls is a quick and inexpensive way to achieve a modern look for your kitchen.

Dear David,
Any advice for selling a home when we have a dog? – Pet Lover

Dear Pet,

Your dog is an important part of your family, but it’s important to keep in mind is that not everyone is a pet lover. For that reason, it’s best to limit the impact that your animal has in your home. I would recommend that you remove your dog from the home during showings. If that is not convenient or if you expect a high volume of showings, it might be easier on both of you to consider boarding for a couple of days. Be vigilant about cleaning up pet mess (hair inside your home, and poop scooping outside). A potential buyer who leaves with a souvenir on their clothing or shoes is far less likely to form a favourable impression of your home.

Dear David,
We are trying to buy our first home and have lost out on two properties in bidding wars. I’m feeling really frustrated, help! – Outbid

Dear Outbid,

Home buying is an emotional roller coaster at the best of times. A hot seller’s market like we’re in right now can make the process even more challenging. Take a deep breath. Get pre-approved for a mortgage and make sure your finances are in order. Talk to your Realtor about your strategy going in, and be easy to reach should you need to make a quick pivot as negotiations unfold. I tell my clients that a house you lose in a bidding war is an opportunity to find something better, so stay the course! Inventory levels are increasing as the season progresses and we are already seeing a slight calm in the buying frenzy of early spring.