Though you didn’t know it then, Woodstock would be the concert that defined a generation.
The transition from the 1960s to the 1970s would also come to be looked back upon as a time of incredible change, political shift, and the development of new socio-cultural values in North America.
From the death of Bobby Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. to the growing discontent with the Vietnam War and the push for greater civil rights, people everywhere — young and old alike — opted for change, stood their ground, and decided not to settle for anything less.
As a very young child of that time, like many of us living here today, I cherish the values of that time — particularly the notion that it sometimes takes blood, sweat and tears to get the job done. Nothing in life is easy, but the reward is found in achieved our once-lofty goals. And despite its losses, by and large, a generation achieved.
I don’t look for the easy solutions today. While the best things in life may be free, like many of us I understand the rewards of investment, effort, time and lots of TLC. It’s one reason that I decided, along with my husband, to consider a fixer-upper when we relocated to eastern Ontario.
With the average price of Ontario homes on the rise — up to $360,000 and higher in some cities — many potential homebuyers, like myself, look beyond pre-fabricated homes and turn-key properties and instead, have considered homes in need of some work (think of Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree). In other words, renovation.
The idea of moving into the perfect home is disappearing, as real estate prices increase, but buying a property that needs work can be a way to save on your overall cost — even with an extensive renovation. As a homeowner, nothing is more exciting than a challenge. As a realtor, nothing is more encouraging than helping another homebuyer find his or her challenge — and achieving it.
Hard work defined our generation once. Why should it stop us from defining ourselves now? For that matter, why should it stop the next generations from achieving their goals? Imagine the satisfaction of CREATING the home of your dreams, with your own hands. And I can help.
I can help by finding properties that will gain value after improvements are made, while keeping your overall costs under budget. It doesn’t make sense to invest $100,000 toward a renovation when your dream home is available down the street for $50,000 more. The first step is to research what the top homes are selling for, and how much your renovated home would be worth in a few years’ time.
Other benefits exist, however: HST does not apply to the price of a resale home, unlike newly-built homes, which can already save you thousands. The government offers grants of up to $5,000 to owners who want to make their home more energy efficient. Bingo: new windows or a new furnace.
But most of all, renovating a home lets you add yourself — your personality, your creativity, your passion and determination — to your space. And if that’s possible within your budget, you owe it to yourself, and the rest of our generation, to roll up those sleeves and get to work.