Archive for January, 2012

Why Bother With a Building Permit?

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

Why Bother With a Building Permit? | Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamIf you’re thinking of renovating your home in Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County, the Edmonton region or elsewhere, there is something you need to read before you even think of visiting the local Home Depot or hiring a contractor.

An article by Mike Holmes in the January 14, 2012 edition of the Edmonton Journal entitled “No building permit? You’re asking for trouble” (posted online as “Before renovating, get the proper permits — or you’ll regret it”) gives the details about why this document is so critical.

In fact, having a building permit is one of the best things you can do to protect yourself and the time and money you invest in a renovation.  That little piece of paper comes with inspections by municipal building inspectors who check the work to see that it’s safe and built to code.

Why is this important?  For starters, you may not know that municipal officials can force you to shut down a project without a permit or even tear down completed work that hasn’t been inspected.  Work that hasn’t been inspected may be fine – but we hear far too many stories about unlicensed contractors doing shoddy work that not only brings down the value of your property but may end up damaging and destroying other properties in your neighborhood.  A permit may cost you a few dollars and a bit of time, but having things done right is worth it.

Read Mike Holmes’ article for the full story.

Looking for property to fix up and rent out or flip?  I can help you find just the right place.  Call me at 780-910-9669, email me at, or contact me here.


How Secure Is Your Home?

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

How Secure Is Your Home? | Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamDo you know anyone in Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County or the Edmonton region who has been the victim of a burglary?  To ensure that this unpleasant experience never happens to you, take a look at our Home Security Checklist.

This list may be one of the most comprehensive you will ever find, starting outside your home with a look at your neighborhood in general, outdoor security and valuables, landscaping, exterior lighting, the garage and other outbuildings.  Focusing on your home itself, items to check here include entry doors and locks, windows, the home interior and its contents, and special circumstances, such as alarm systems, firearms, swimming pool safety, and fire safety.  The document concludes with a special checklist just for things you need to consider while on vacation.  Chances are there are a few things on the Home Security Checklist you haven’t thought of doing, and those things just might make your home more secure and less burglar-friendly!

You might also be interested in our Fire Safety Checklist.

Some related blog posts:

Looking for a new home, especially one with more security features?  Call me at 780-910-9669, email me, or contact me here.


Good Time or Bad Time To Buy a Home?

Friday, January 6th, 2012

Good Time or Bad Time To Buy a Home? | Spruce Grove Stony Plain Parkland County Real Estate | Barry TwynamMost people considering the purchase of a home, whether in Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Parkland County, the Edmonton region, or elsewhere, get around to asking the important question:  “Is now a good time or a bad time to buy a home?”  It sounds flippant or evasive if I respond with “Yes” or “That depends”, but both answers are correct!  For most people, buying a home is one of the most significant events in their lives, and it naturally comes with many positives and negatives based on individual situations.  Once people have made the decision to invest in a home, the best time to buy becomes “now”, no matter what the market is doing.

But the market at the moment in the Edmonton area is making the decision to buy much easier.  An article in the January 5, 2012 Edmonton Journal entitled “Real estate market healthy, agents say” contains some very encouraging news.   In spite of crises elsewhere (Europe’s money woes, the US housing market), prices and sales in our region remain steady.  The article quotes a statistic from the Realtors Association of Edmonton:  the average price of homes sold through MLS in 2011 was $325,457.  This is down slightly from $329,019 in 2010, but prices are not undergoing the wild swings we’ve experienced in the past or the ups and downs felt elsewhere.  The article also points out that 827 properties were sold in December 2011, compared to just two more the previous December.

Is right now, just after New Year’s, a good time to buy?  Sure, why not?  The article mentions that the market usually picks up in the summer, with April and May being peak months, but there is always an inventory of homes waiting for the right buyer, and the current market stability, combined with continuing low mortgage rates, all suggest the time is never better!

I’d love to help you find that perfect home!  Call me at 780-910-9669, email me at, or contact me here.

Barry Twynam, Realty Executives Leading
#1 14 McLeod Avenue, Spruce Grove, Alberta, T7X 3X3
Tel: 780-962-9696 Cell: 780-910-9669 Fax: 780-962-9699
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