Unique Home in Sunnylea – 10 Kirk Bradden Road East

Unique homes in sought after Sunnylea are a treasure to find, and this 2-bedroom bungalow is just one of those treasure!

Exterior Front

Sitting on a 42 x 110 ft lot, and larger than most 3-bedrooms, it has a huge Living Room.

Beauiful deck

Sun shines in from massive windows, skylights, and sliding glass doors. Gorgeous, professional basement.  2 Fireplaces, 2 Bathroom.

Gorgeous backyard

If you would like to see this home, please let us know. We would love to take you on a tour! lina (at) kuliavas (dot) com or 416-762-8255

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Downtown Condos Get Snapped Up!

Downtown condos that are steps to subway and shopping with amenities which include rock climbing and spinning with views of lake and island airport get snapped up in a hurry. Just like this one we just sold at Front & Spadina.

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It was centrally-located to some of Toronto’s best shopping, the city’s major sports & concert venues, great access to the convenient Billy Bishop City Centre Airport, while maintaining a secluded and relaxing atmosphere.

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BBQ Area

Outdoor Relaxing Area

If you have any questions about buying or selling your condo or home, please do not hesitate to reach out at anytime – lina (at) kuliavas (dot) com – I would be happy to help you!

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Lovely Property in the Sought-After Sunnylea Area

22 Winston Grove is a lovely property in the sought-after Sunnylea area.  It is located on a peaceful sunny street, just minutes from the Royal York Subway, schools, Kingsway shops, restaurants, parks, community centres and pools.

Beautiful stone front brick home

This charming stone front brick home is built on a south-facing lot with a built-in single car garage, private driveway, fenced in rear garden with mature trees and perennials.

The home has an enclosed glass front porch. The main floor boasts a sun-filled living room with a bay window, fireplace and mantle.

The dining room is adjacent to the living room as well as the family sized eat-in kitchen.  From the front foyer, a set of stairs lead to the third bedroom with a picture window and closet. This space could be also used as a family room or den.

Spacious living & dining room area

Facing the garden on the main level are the Master and the second bedrooms. Each bedroom has two picture corner windows and a closet.  The four piece bathroom is located on this level.

There is a separate side entrance to the full basement which includes a storage, furnace, laundry and a recreational room with a fireplace.

22 Winston Grove is an exciting character home that awaits new owners.

http://www.linakuliavas.com/22-Winston-Grve/Toronto/toronto/1060982

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Location is still #1 for Condo Purchases

People often comment that the condo market is going to bust since so many have been built and are continuing to be built. I disagree. Condo living is becoming a lifestyle choice by many who have demanding careers and don’t want to maintain a house and/or want the freedom to close up and travel freely. The only advice I would give buyers is to buy either a unique “boutique” condo (so that yours is not a dime a dozen) or to buy by the subway. Easy access to the subway always demands higher prices.

When looking for a condo there is usually a choice of buying in a new or old building. New buildings are very attractive – obviously because they sparkle and you can just move in, but the square footage is usually tight. Older condos should not be overlooked just because they don’t immediately provide the WOW factor. They usually offer huge living spaces (compared to same price new ones) and can be updated slowly. You can create your own WOW factor. Either way, location is still the most important factor in any purchase.

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Space Saver Makeovers for Houses & Condos

Are you constantly misplacing household items like your screwdriver or tennis raquet? If so, perhaps your household needs a little re-organizing. Whether your home is a compact condo, cozy semi, or spacious detached, we can all benefit from a periodic check-in to see if we are making the best use of our space.

For House Owners…

Take a peek inside many Canadian garages and chances are you won’t see a car. Garages and basements often become a dumping ground for all the things we rarely use. Here are five quick ways to makeover your garage and/or basement:

  • Clear the clutter! Have a yard sale, sell your unused goods online, or donate items to your local charity.
  • Add tall utility shelving to free up floor space, keeping any hazardous cleaning, garden, and automotive supplies out of reach of children by placing them on the top shelves.
  • Store lesser used items on utility shelving in plastic storage containers with lids to keep out dust and moisture. Use bigger bins on casters for more frequently used items and roll them out of the way, such as under a worktable.
  • Clear off your workbench and use a wall or pegboard to hang frequently used tools and store the rest in a tool chest. Use jars or plastic bins for storing and organizing smaller items like nails, screws, and nuts.
  • Hang skis, bikes, brooms, shovels, wheelbarrows and other unwieldy sport, garden, and household items off purpose-built wall hooks or in specialty containers to keep them free from damage.

For Condo Owners…

Even in the smallest of condominium units, there is often under-utilized space. Here are a few ways to help you optimize it:

  • Transfer your music collection to a digital format and sell your space-hogging records and CDs.
  • Keep out-of-season clothes and spare linens in vacuum-sealed storage bags under the bed. Use hooks for bathrobes, clothes, purses, or even jewellery.
  • Use decorative baskets for small items like magazines, hats, scarves, mittens, and children’s toys to keep things neat and organized.
  • Open or floating shelving will create the illusion of space while providing stylish storage for household and decorative items.
  • Invest in multi-functional furniture versus individual pieces which can take up valuable floor space. For example, a padded ottoman can be used as coffee table, storage space, and extra seating.
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Tips for Renovating Your Basement

Want to add more space to your home without building up or out? Look no further than your basement.

According to the Appraisal Institute of Canada, renovating a basement can give you a 50-75% return on your investment when it comes to selling your home. Here’s how to get it done right:

Start With a Plan

What type of space does your family require? Is it an extra living space for your teenager, a playroom for the little one, or perhaps an entertainment area for all to enjoy? Once you decide on how you want to utilize the space, you can layout your design. If budget allows, an architect or interior designer could assist you with the layout design and make valuable suggestions.

Do it Yourself or Hire a Professional

Depending on your skill set, budget, and time, you may want to enlist the services of a contractor who has the expertise required to finish a basement. If you do it yourself and don’t have the required time or skill to do the job correctly, you may find yourself looking at a repair bill far exceeding the amount you originally thought the project would cost. Make an informed decision. Be sure to carefully weigh all factors when deciding which option is right for you, while considering costs, material, labour, and equipment requirements.

Framing

Framing basement walls and ceilings is one of the most important aspects of any basement renovation. Two popular wall framing options are wood or steel studs. Wood is the classic choice. It is versatile, easy to work with, and cost-effective. Whereas steel, although more costly, adds a level of strength, rot resistance and won’t warp and crack like wood might over time. Two popular ceiling framing options are dropped ceiling tiles or drywall. Dropped ceiling tiles provide easy access to pipes and wires which can be a saviour if a tub or toilet on the main level floor springs a leak. Alternatively, dry wall ceilings offer a smooth finish and require less vertical space – a great option if your basement ceiling height is already low.

Flooring

There are plenty of basement flooring choices to choose from including laminate, linoleum, vinyl, wood and ceramic tiles. Be sure to match your flooring choice with the intended use of the space and your geographic location. For example, a game room may require more durable flooring than an office. Do you live in an area with a tendency for flooding or is your location dry? Carpet with high density under pad will offer cushion and moisture protection from the typical condensation found in basements. Engineered hardwood made for below grade installation will flex and handle moisture better than traditional hardwood. Ceramic tile is great for bathrooms and laundry rooms and is easy to install on concrete.

Add a Bathroom

Installing a bathroom in the basement is a great way to add value to your home. Determine if you require a full bathroom or if a powder room will suffice. Powder rooms are relatively simple to install, easy to keep clean, and won’t take up too much room. Full three or four piece bathrooms can provide a comfortable, private, and even luxurious, space for overnight visitors to enjoy. With either option, time and costs can be reduced if bathroom fixtures are located near existing plumbing and are arranged in a line on one wall. Be sure to check local codes for plumbing and electrical aspects of your project.

Add Storage

No matter what kind of plan you come up with for your basement, remember to factor in plenty of closet or storage space. This will enable you to de-clutter the rest of your home to keep it tidy and inviting. Further, if you ever decide to move, having this extra storage space should appeal to just about any prospective buyer.

A finished basement can not only increase your home enjoyment but it can also add valuable square footage. From everyday living to financial value, finished basements provide many benefits to you as a homeowner.

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10 Tips for Turning Your Home into an Income Property

If you’re looking for a way to increase your income, you may need to look no further than your own home. These days, more and more Canadians are turning their homes into income properties. An income property is a home that is bought or developed in order to generate income, typically by renting it out in part or in its entirety. Renting can be a financially rewarding experience, either to provide extra income, or to help pay off a mortgage. So if you’re thinking of going the income property route, here are 10 important steps you should take:

  1. Contact your local or municipal government to first determine if you are legallypermitted to turn your home into an income property. Work with them to ensure the unit adheres to all existing building and fire codes.
  2. Get to know the landlord-tenant relationship regulations in your province. These laws will give you a better understanding of your role and responsibilities as a landlord.
  3. Inform your insurance company about your plans for renting out space in your home and ask them if you require any additional coverage.
  4. Get your home “renter-ready”. From a simple change such as a fresh coat of paint to a major renovation, try and make your home look and feel as spacious, bright, and comfortable as possible. Your home should look appealing inside and out in order to attract potential renters.
  5. Price and market your unit competitively. Scan the classifieds and visit rental websites to find out how much similar units are being listed for.
  6. Conduct a screening process for applicants. Consider running a criminal background check, as well as a credit check, on prospective tenants.
  7. Draft a written tenancy agreement. It may contain information such as: the date the tenant will move into the rental unit, the rent amount, the date rent is to be paid, what services are included in the rent (such as electricity or parking) and any separate charges, as well as the rules that you require the tenant to follow.
  8. Consult a lawyer to look over the contract. Although not necessary, a lawyer can ensure there are no legal problems or issues with the contract before you present it to your tenant.
  9. Request a minimum deposit of one month’s rent in advance that may be used against any property damage or unpaid bills, depending on the laws in your province.
  10. Have the tenant sign the contract. Ensure the tenant receives a copy and keep the original for your own records. Happy renting!
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Tips for Moving

Moving can be an exciting and overwhelming experience. There is a lot to remember when planning your move, but with some organization your experience can be a lot less stressful.

A Few Weeks Prior to Moving

  1. Arrange your moving day well in advance – When booking a truck or hiring a moving company, it’s often worth comparing several estimates. Your Royal LePage agent can provide you with some referrals for local and national movers.
  2. Re- direct your essential services to your new home; arrange to have services such as gas, electricity, and cable TV to be connected on the day the sale closes.
  3. At your current home, arrange to have your gas, water, and electricity meters read on the day you leave and have the bills forwarded to your new address. If necessary, water heater and furnace rental agreements should to be transferred to the purchaser.
  4. Update your contact information and provide a forwarding address for schools, work, and services such as banks or insurance companies.
  5. Also, don’t forget to make arrangements for pet or baby sitters for the day of the move.

Days Prior to Moving

  1. Gather all important personal, medical and insurance documents and keep them separate from other moving items
  2. Pack valuables and any personal items that you will require in the interim of your house being unpacked.
  3. Make sure to pack and label items by a theme, such as kitchen or bathroom, so you can easily get organized when unpacking

Day of the Move

  1. If you are using a moving company make a list of all items to be moved and compare it to the movers to make sure you agree on contents to be delivered
  2. Check all shelves, closets and cupboards for any items that may have been left behind

After the Move

  1. Apply for a new drivers license, health card or other items that require an up to date address
  2. Register your car at your new address. Your insurance company will have a limited time grace period so make sure you register before the deadline
  3. Check open and closing hours of stores and services in your new neighborhood. This will help you feel settled earlier

Moving can be difficult, but with careful planning your move can go smoothly so that you can start enjoying your new home right away.

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Marketing Your Home

If you’re thinking of selling your home, you need a marketing plan. Just like any otherproduct people buy or sell, a home’s value must be communicated to the proper audience to ensure the seller gets the best possible price.

Marketing your home means more than putting  up a lawn sign and sticking an ad in your local newspaper. You need to have a complete marketing plan that takes into account your home’s unique qualities, your objectives and details the specific resources available to you.

Your planning should begin as soon as you choose a Realtor®, and often even before that. Part of your marketing plan will involve pricing your property, deciding when to list it and what features need to be cleaned or repaired. At this stage it is essential that you are completely honest with your Realtor® about the condition of your home, your financial needs and any time constraints.

Once you have the basic information established, you need to get to the “guts” of the marketing plan, or determine how best to let people know that your home is for sale and get them excited about it. You need to keep in mind when you are planning that there are two key target audiences: home buyers and other real estate agents. You will need different marketing vehicles and slightly different information to effectively reach each audience.

There are a myriad marketing products and activities that can be utilized to help sell yourhome and your Realtor® with the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), newspaper advertising, brochures, open houses, neighbourhood mailings, etc. In addition to the standard tools, Royal LePage Realtors® have access to the industry’s leading marketing tools and resources, including:

  • http://www.royallepage.ca: Your home will be featured on Royal LePage’s web site which receives an average of more than 450,000 unique user sessions each month;
  • Virtual Reality Tours and Slide Shows: Available for many homes on the web site, giving prospective buyers a private tour of your home;
  • Online Feature Sheets: Providing pictures and greater detail for your home when people want to know a little more than the basics;
  • Referral Network: Your property’s information will be available to nearly 11,000 Royal LePage Realtors coast-to-coast and 700 of the top real estate companies in the world through an exclusive affiliation;
  • Customized Just Listed Cards: Distributed to potential buyers with details of your home on it.

Your Realtor® can help you determine which tools will be most beneficial in your particular situation and market. Whatever the plan you decide on, make certain that you are an active part of it. Reviewing the plan’s success on a regular basis should be a built-in part of any successful marketing plan. This article just gives a sampling of the many ways there are to market your home, to ensure the best price possible.

To get more information on how Royal LePage and I can help you put one together, contact me directly!

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Viewing an Open House with Open Eyes

Remaining objective can be a difficult task when viewing an open house. It is easy to fall in love with a home’s appearance, blind to problems that may make it unsuitable. While aesthetics can be an important consideration, it is necessary to look beyond window-dressing.

A qualified home inspector should be hired before purchasing a home, but there are areasthat consumers can examine on their own. This will shorten your list of potential homes and reduce the likelihood that a home inspector will reject it as unsafe or unsuitable. Here are some considerations and common problem areas to look for when touring an open house:

General Upkeep

Much can be surmised from the general state of the home. Is the home clean? Are lawns left uncut? Are the walls chipped and in need of paint? If smaller chores have been ignored it may be an indication of a broader disregard for home maintenance.

Water Leaks

Check ceilings and drywall for stains, bulges and other signs of water damage. Water that works its way inside via a leaky roof or a cracked foundation can rot wood, create mildew and mold, destroy possessions and can be expensive to repair.

Does it Work?

Test lights, faucets, the heater, air conditioning, major appliances (that are to be included with the home) – even flush the toilets to ensure everything is working as it should.

Floors

As you walk across the floors be aware of spongy (soft or springy) sections. Excessive squeaking and uneven, bumpy floors may also be indicative of expensive forthcoming repairs.

Doors & Windows

Check that doors and windows fit snugly in their jambs and operate smoothly. Look for flaked paint and loose caulking. If the wood around windows and doors is not protected from moisture, it can rot away. Feel for drafts in these areas too.

Poor Drainage

On a wet day walk around the yard and look for areas where water collects. This can be an especially bad sign if there are soggy areas near the home’s foundation.

Grout & Caulking

If the grout and caulking around bathroom and kitchen tiles is loose and crumbly, there is a good chance that water is finding its way into the wall or under the floor.

Structural

Although this is definitely an area where you want the services of a qualified home inspector, you can get an idea about possible structural problems if you see deep cracks in the foundations or loose mortar and bricks.

Miscellaneous Concerns

Naturally, one the most important factors will be determining if the house suits your family’s needs. If you do not want to replace all of your furniture, make sure it will fit into the rooms of the new house. This is difficult to do by eye, so be sure to bring a measuring tape. Also, take note of storage space. If you are moving from a home with large closets and a shed, make sure your new house is able to store an equivalent amount of belongings.

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