Tag Archives: martell homes


Neighbourhood Profile: Brookside West, Fredericton

Brookside West

Located on the north side of Fredericton off Brookside Drive is Brookside West, a beautiful, fast growing, family neighborhood. This prime development is within close proximity to all local amenities (Two Nations Crossing, Brookside Mall, Willie O’Ree Arena, West Hills Golf), schools and minutes from downtown Fredericton.

Features:

•             Wooded lots available
•             Quiet Atmosphere
•             Restrictive covenants to protect your investment
•             Court lots available
•             Near the new West Hills Golf Course

Schools:

•             Kindergarten to Grade 5: Nashwaaksis Memorial School
•             Grade 6 to 8: Nashwaaksis Middle School
•             Grade 9 to 12: Leo Hayes High School

Lot Prices:

Single Family Lots start at $67,000.00

To book a Discovery Session and start planning your new home in Brookside West, call Jason today at 506-292-2169 or email jhaines@themartellexperience.com.

Neighborhood Profile: Notre-Dame Estates, Dieppe, NB

Notre Dame Estates map

Nestled in the heart of the city of Dieppe, you’ll find Notre-Dame Estates. This prestigious development is in a prime location with close proximity to local amenities, schools, Rotary St-Anselme Park, Arthur J. LeBlanc Centre (Arena) and the Dieppe Aquatic and Sports Centre. Notre-Dame Estates is an outstanding family community to call home.

Features:
• Wooded lots available
• Restrictive covenants to protect your investment
• Prime court lots available
• Fox Creek Golf Course nearby
• 3 acres of natural park

Schools:
Kindergarten to Grade 5: Lou MacNarin
Grades 6 to Grade 8: Lewisville Middle School
Grades 8 through 12: Moncton High School

Écoles:
M – 5e année : École Anna-Malenfant
6e – 8e année : École Carrefour de l’Acadie
9e – 12e année : École Mathieu Martin

Lot Prices:
Single Family Lots ranging between $59,900 and $84,900

Notre Dame Map#2

To book a Discovery Session and start planning your new home in Notre-Dame Estates, call Pierre today at (506) 871-5237 or email at pierre@themartellexperience.com.

Selling Your House Under 5+ Feet Of Snow? sNOw Problem!

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Thanks to Luke Betts of Moncton for this fantastic photo of his house today!

Two weeks ago we shared our thoughts on why your home isn’t selling (read more here).  At the end of that post, I promised to follow up with some actionable steps that you can take to create more value and get your home sold.  While my original focus was on general steps to increase value, I couldn’t help but be inspired by the 5+ feet of snow staring at me through my front window (and my Facebook feed).  So, if you’re home is currently for sale, here is what you need to know….

1.  SHOW ME A SIGN

I’m willing to bet that your lawn sign is currently buried… First thing being first, get outside and see whether the sign can be dug out and made visible from the street.  If so, great!  Whether you dig it out or your Realtor does, well that’s up to you BUT at the very least make sure your Realtor knows that the sign is buried and whether it can be dug out.  If your sign has no chance of being dug out because of where the snow is being thrown, then you need to contact your Realtor right away and get a new sign.  I don’t generally recommend jamming a new sign into the top of a snowbank for safety reasons but, find a high visibility location to place it like ON the house/porch, etc.

2. SALT & SHOVEL 

Before you call me captain obvious, hear me out.  I don’t mean basic snow removal.  If your home is for sale, you have to take your snow removal to the next level.  If potential buyers have to walk sideways between their car and the banks to get up your driveway, they are automatically feeling discomfort and are associating that feeling with your home.  It is essential that you take the time to widen paths and walkways and, if possible, salt them down until they’re bare.  If buyers can plant their feet firmly on the ground, they will automatically feel more confident with the property.  If buyers are waddling, arms outstretched, on ice… well, they’re not looking at your house.  They’re actually just trying not to fall.

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If buyers are trekking through this, they will be feeling emotional in all of the wrong ways.

 

3. FEELING HOT, HOT, HOT!

The temperature inside the home is such an important component of presenting the highest value for the property.  If buyers are cold inside your home, they are uncomfortable and, again, they associate that feeling with the home.  Further, consciously or subconsciously, they’re likely running through a list of all of the reasons that the home could be cold: Poor insulation? Defective/old heat system? Bad windows? And the list goes on… don’t put your home (or yourself) through the added scrutiny and turn the heat up a few hours prior to showing.  Remember, you may choose to wear slippers and sweaters inside a la Fred Rogers, but your buyers may not.

4. WINDOWS (and everything) CLEANER THAN CLEAN

Have you ever noticed just how bright the world is when it’s covered it snow?  The extra brightness reflected in the snow makes every spec of dust, dirt and grime show much more obviously that normal.  As such, Winter is the perfect time to get the cleaners in or throw in extra elbow grease and get your windows, floors and flat surfaces absolutely spotless.

5. CLEAR DECKS, PATIOS AND PORCHES COMPLETELY

This one isn’t so obvious.  A huge part of the living space that your home offers is the outdoor living space.  But if buyers can see it, you can’t sell it!  So, get out on your porch, deck and/or patio and shovel it completely so that potential buyers can visualize what the home will be like beyond winter.  And let’s face it, just about every New Brunswicker is currently longing for summer.  Show them that your home is going to give them the summer living spaces that they’re currently dreaming about!

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6. SPEAKING OF SUMMER… UPDATE YOUR PHOTOS! 

If the online leading photo of your home shows a lush green lawn, replace it with a photo that shows the home in the snow.  WHY?  Because a photo of your home with a green lawn will stand out like a sore thumb and buyers will assume that the home has been sitting on the market forever… then they will ask why and likely assume the worst! Don’t risk it… the photo that you’re using to market your home should be a reflection of how it looks today… not 6 months ago.

What other winter selling challenges can you add to this list?

Heat Pump Probs?

photo (17)Ahh, the beautiful, snowy East Coast.  Personally, I LOVE snow but I know that it’s got many other New Brunswickers feeling down. With so much snow on the ground (and more on the way tonight), it’s not surprise that we’ve gotten a few calls from past clients whose heat pumps are not operating.  A very common problem with an abundance of snow (and nowhere to put it) is snow in your heat pump condenser.

We spoke to our buddies at ConAir Ventilation here in Greater Moncton are here are the steps that they advise you to take prior to making a service call:

STEP 1- remove snow on and around the condenser. We’re talking REALLY clean it out here… (The condenser is the unit outside the house).
STEP 2- clean as much inside the condenser as possible.
STEP 3- pour hot water in the condenser to remove excess snow inside.
STEP 4- turn heat pump breaker for about 15 minutes then turn it back on.
If this process does not work, then it’s time to make a service call.
Good luck & stay warm!

 

 

 

The Only Reason Your Home Isn’t Selling.

I’ve been toying with writing this post since 2012… that was the year that it became much more challenging to sell your home in Greater Moncton.  And, if your house isn’t selling, this post is directed at you.  So before you read on, I want you think about how badly you want to sell your house.  Also, please remind yourself that my only intention in writing this post is to help you sell your house.  Period. I’m sure you have great taste & style! :)

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I’m no stranger to what it takes to sell a home.  I’ve been marketing and selling homes for 11 years (as a former Realtor and now a builder).   I even completed a home staging designation and have overseen complete transformations of my client’s homes to ensure that they get the most money when they sell. So here’s the kicker… I’m not a Realtor any longer but I still hear my clients’ disappointment when they can’t start their new home project because they can’t sell their current home!

Why Isn’t Your House Selling?  It’s simple really…. you haven’t created enough VALUE for the buyers. Period.   

Marketing 101:  Value = Benefits/Cost

How do you create value?  Follow the simple equation above and you will see that once benefits outweigh cost, in the mind of buyers, you’ve achieved value and your home will sell.  The problem that you’re having is that the benefits to the potential buyer of your home have not yet outweighed the cost.  To sell your home, you need to start thinking like a marketer and of your home as a PRODUCT! Buyers don’t have the sentimental attachment that you do, so it’s best to save the nostalgia for the photo albums and take it out of the home.

To shift the value equation and sell your home, you have two options:

  1. Increase the benefits
  2. Decrease the cost

In this post, I will to consider each way that you may not be maximizing your home’s value.

Increase Your Home’s Benefits

You really need to be in tune with what buyers are looking for on the market to understand what your home may be lacking.  Particularly in a buyer’s market, there is so much choice out there that you cannot afford to have a home that is just average.  In our market, your home will often be competing with brand new construction homes so you need to recognize your best assets and let them shine.

1. What is special about your home already? Scream it from the rooftops. 

Does your neighbourhood have mature trees? Do you have an oversized lot? Are you close to an amazing school? Can you walk downtown?  What does your home have that it’s competitors lack? Buyers need to be told what makes it special. (Remember, the home is a product).

2. What is not so special about your home? Fix it.

Flooring and paint make over this kitchen.

 

Remember, this post is for people who REALLY want to sell their homes.  This is the single hardest hurdle to overcome with home sellers.  I’ve had to convince clients to stain their floors, paint their wood cabinets, change their siding… you name it, my clients have done it.  And their houses sold.

There are a few reasons that I see people list homes that are not “market-ready”.

1. Many sellers will not change things about the home because they personally like the house as it is.  This is a dangerous way to approach your home sale in a buyers market.  Have a look at the homes that are actually selling in your price point.  If those homes all have dark modern hardwood and your home boasts a golden oak, it’s time to consider the idea that your flooring is not appealing to buyers and needs to be changed if you want to sell (see image above).

2. Another argument against doing the work up-front: “Why would I change the house? I don’t know what the buyers will want.”  The reality is that the majority of buyers have already looked at photos of your home.  If you haven’t given them a reason to come see it in person, they simply won’t.  You can’t afford to look dated/average in a buyers market.

Decrease Your Home’s Cost 

Market value does not lie.  Buyers are only willing to pay the price that they are willing to pay and overpricing your home can be dangerous to the selling process.  Frankly, it’s great if you think that your home is worth $500,000.00 but that doesn’t change anything if buyers value your home at $350,000.00.  Overpricing a listing simply means that the buyers who would have considered the home are not even visiting because they perceive the home price out of their budget.

The price of your home should only be set using a Comparative Market Analysis- a set of stats showing what other comparable homes are selling for.  If you’ve done a CMA and your home still isn’t selling, you may be experiencing a market shift and should consult your Realtor regarding whether a reduction in price would be helpful.

Over the next while, I’ll follow up with some specific actionable steps you can take to work on increasing the benefits of your home.  Have you had success updating your home to sell it?  What worked for you? I’d love to hear.

-Natalie

 

4 Signs That Your New Build Will Go Over Budget

Nobody wants their new home build to go over budget.

You hire a builder, they quote you a price, they build the house, final bill comes in… Notwithstanding new items that you chose to add or upgrade along the way, the final cost should be the same as the contract price.

Should be. A home-builder, after all, does this for a living.  You, the client, have likely never priced a home in your life and you’re trusting your builder to do it for you- accurately and without surprises.

But we’ve all heard the stories.  You have that friend, cousin, workmate that built a house and ended up paying way more than they were quoted.  This happens all of the time and it shouldn’t… going over budget is avoidable and should be a focus of any solid home builder worth working with.

If you’re about to get into a contract with a builder, make sure that you look for the following signs to ensure that your home will cost what you’re builder says that it will.

4 Signs That Your New Build Will Go Over Budget

Your Builder Is The Cheapest

You’ve done your homework & met with multiple builders.  You’ve probably narrowed it down to 3 or 4 builders that you like/trust and had them price the home.  So where did the pricing come in?

I’m going to let you in on an industry secret… if the builders priced the exact same quality of materials and finishes, their prices should be extremely close.  Extremely.  After all, they’re sourcing material and labor from the same region.

If you’re finding that one builder is significantly cheaper than the others, chances are very good that they are planning on using cheaper materials.  There’s nothing wrong with that, you think, until you find out that your kitchen allowance will not cover that “painted, cabinets-to-the-ceiling” dream you’ve been coveting on Houzz.

Your Builder Doesn’t “Get” Your Vision

You’re planning 10 foot ceilings, a double-sided fireplace and custom woodwork throughout.  Is your builder thinking 8 foot ceilings, non-existent fireplace and mini-baseboards? Communication is key and it is impossible for the builder to price something that you’ve never discussed.

Prior to pricing your plan, your builder should be asking you extremely detailed questions about the finish that you want in the home.  If they don’t include these items when pricing upfront, these items will become upgrades and will drive you over budget in no-time at all.

Your Builder Only Builds “A Few Homes Per Year”

Maybe they told you that you will get a more custom experience because you’re 1 of 3 projects… Perhaps, the owner of the company himself will be able to be on the job-site every day… Heck, he may even do the finish work himself! Great…. or, is it?

First, there’s buying power… Obviously, Wal*Mart buys better than Joe’s Convenience.  Shocker.  Similarly, home-builders are rewarded by vendors based on volume.  The builder who builds 3 homes a year is simply not getting the same pricing as the builder who builds 50.

Next comes the issue of limited experience.  20 years of home-building experience, building 3 homes/year = 60 homes built.  10 years experience at 50 homes/year= 500 homes built.  The builder that is more active is much more likely to be current on trends and customer wants (aka. more likely to know that you want an open-concept floor plan instead of the halls & walls of yesteryear).

Your Builder Did Not Give You A Detailed List Of What They Priced

Whether your builder is a relative stranger or your second cousin, you need to get a detailed list of what’s included in a quoted price.  This is not negotiable.  Not requiring this level of detail of your builder is giving up too much control and allows the builder to decide what is (or isn’t) included on whim.

Having a detailed list of inclusions creates accountability.  Always ensure that the inclusions are added to your contract, making them part of a legally binding document.

 

If your home builder is demonstrating these signs, talk to him about budget & share your concerns.  Cross-reference your wishlist with the pricing specs.  Ask for past references and find out what their experience was like.  Only when your builder demonstrates to you that these items are taken care of, should you move forward with a contract.

If you have any questions about staying on budget throughout your build, shoot us an email to natalie@themartellexperience.com.  We’d be happy to help out!

Insulation 101: What Every Home Owner Should Know

A great insulation job on one of our job sites.

A great insulation job on one of our job sites.

With the arrival of winter, you may be more concerned with your Christmas list than your R-Value but you shouldn’t be.  If your home is inadequately or improperly insulated, you could literally be throwing away hundreds of dollars that could be much better spent Christmas shopping- or maybe on a vacation down South!!  This month’s column covers what you need to know about insulation. Whether your home is old or new, every homeowner should have a basic understanding of what is inside their walls.

1.     Batt Insulation:  A very common insulation, batt insulation is usually placed in the walls of the home and has a cotton-like appearance.  The insulation is positioned in the cavity between the studs of the walls.  Because batt insulation traps air in the fiberglass to add R-Value, it is imperative not to crush or squeeze the insulation into the cavity or you will lose insulation value.  We highly recommend an experienced installer to ensure that you are maximizing the efficiency of your home. The downside to batt insulation is that you usually have exposed studs remaining which creates cold spots that allow heat/cold to transfer easily.

2.     Blown-In Insulation: Blown-In insulation is available in a variety of materials however, cellulose (fire-retardant paper fiber) is our favorite product due to its ability to fill different sizes & shapes of cavities.  It is essential that your blown-in insulation is applied at the same depth across your space to maximize your R-Value.  Any low spots will create weak points for your insulation.  Also, it is essential that you do not cover your ventilation system to avoid future potential roof problems.  While blown-in insulation can be used inside wall cavities, it can be prone to settlement and compaction.  We recommend batt insulation in the wall cavities over blown-in.

3.     Rigid Foam: Rigid foam is available in solid sheets and is a strong material that does not get crushed thereby diminishing your R-Value.  We are big fans of applying Rigid foam on the exterior of our new homes, under the siding, to minimize thermal bridging- the heat loss through wood studs.   And a bonus feature of Rigid foam is that it does not mould.  Other applications of Rigid foam include under a floor slab during construction or inside basement walls.  When we use Rigid foam in conjunction with Batt insulation, we are able to obtain an R-Value that is superior to ICF (Insulated Concrete Form) construction.

If you’re looking for a new home and want to learn more about the options available for insulation & energy efficiency, please give us a call!  If you’re looking to increase the R-Value of your existing home, we highly recommend that you connect with one of the many qualified insulators around town to ensure you get the best bang for your insulation buck.

No kidding… we are giving away a free HOUSE!

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WIN Tony’s New Home! XL 96.9 announced last week, the biggest radio contest EVER in Atlantic Canada! XL Country 96.9 and Martell Homes have teamed up give away a newly built home. In fact, its still being built now! Stop by 35 Holland Drive in Moncton, and see it for yourself!

 You don’t need to buy a ticket to win this home. This is a contest for XL Listeners ONLY!

 Weekdays at 7:10a, 8:10a, 9:10a, 1:10p, 3:10p, and 5:10p, call us to hide your key! There is only one catch: You have to remember where the LAST listener hid their key to win!

 Remember where the last key was hidden, and you could win a NEW Martell Home! Imagine, being MORTGAGE FREE for LIFE!

 This is a contest to write home about! So tune in to XL Country 96.9 all week, and your families dreams could come true.

 We are so excited to give away a house!!

Meet the Team: Rachael

Meet Rachael Keetch (as in “keetch” a ball), our new blogger! Rachael will be graduating with a B.A. in Communications (Honours) this year and plans to take Visual Arts next year. She’s got an East-coast shaped heart, loves design and anything outdoorsy. She’ll be keeping you up to-date on all things Martell for the next little while!

Keep reading to get to know a few things about her!

You only get three crayons to make your picture. Which do you choose?

Turquoise, Charcoal, & Orange

From where do you get your news?

The Huffington Post

What famous people have you seen in real life?

BB King yelled at me for getting too much ice at a hotel once. I also have spent time with Landon Austin, Cautioners (formerly ColorFire) and I’ve seen UnderOath and tons of Politicians. I think the coolest was The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.

If you were going to open up a shop, what would you sell?

Fair Trade Coffee–in the darkest shades with all the spices and amazing mugs from the guy who sells them at the market. I’d also offer Candy Cane ice cream all year round!

When you were five, what did you want to be when you grew up? Did it happen?

I wanted to be a cartoonist. I can’t say I’m one now, but Marketing can be pretty artistic at times :)

Tips on How to Run Better

Here at Martell Homes we are getting ready for the CIBC Run for the Cure happening on September 30th! And we want you! That’s right, we want you on our team as we run to end breast cancer.

 

Now, you may be saying “Yeahhh but I don’t run!”.. and that’s okay for 2 reasons!. 1) You don’t have to run when you’re doing the Run for the Cure, you can walk! and 2) We’re here to give you some tips so that you can!

Here are our top 5 tips on how to run better:

1. Be the Turtle When Training – While we all get a little excited when we start something new it’s really important when running to  start conservatively and allow yourself to progress. The danger is that if you start too aggressively you can set yourself up for some less than desireble injuries. Try adding 10% to your run every week for the first three weeks and then back off a bit (20%) for the following week.

2. Treat Your Feet – Having the proper footwear is essential. We’ve all done it, we’ve gone to the store and bought new runners without actually getting them to properly size and evaluate our feet needs. Take your time when you go to get your runners and make sure that you have the absolute best fit and shoe to help you avoid running injuries.

3. Bring a Friend: There’s nothing like having someone there beside you to keep you motivated, entertained, and engaged. Bring someone along who you know will support you and encourage you in your goal. Having someone also makes you more likely to keep up your running schedule because you’re less likely to make excuses not to run if you know someone is depending on you.

4. Keep Your Gear Ready – Always have your running gear (clothes, shoes, water, watch) ready in a bag so that any time you have a burst of energy or motivation you can take advantage of it without getting slowed down by prep.

5.  Enter Races – Races give you a goal which will make you more focused and motivated to push yourself to be the best you can be. The CIBC Run for the Cure is the perfect opportunity for you to set a goal and work towards it. If you’re interested in joining (or supporting) or Martell Homes team check out our donation page here!

 

Check out this blog for more tips on how you can run better.

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