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Easy room makeovers for fall

 Wednesday, September 19, 2018     Laurence Mongeau     House and Home Real Estate Market

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Fall has us with thoughts sitting amongst comfy home décor, sweater weather and all things pumpkin. Changing your décor in the fall is easy with just a few simple touches.

The Family Fold
Swap your pillow covers with fall-themed designs in stripes or plaids. Add thick, plush blankets in wool, cotton, chenille or even luxurious cashmere for those cooler nights. Place one or two on the back of the sofa and arrange the rest in a large metal or wicker basket. Tree branch coasters also add an instant natural touch.

Kitchen & Dining Room
Update your tabletop decor with natural elements that can be displayed in many creative ways. Instead of a runner, put gourds, pinecones, acorns, and mini pumpkins along the middle of the table. Succulents and fresh cut flowers in bell jars are also great decor options.

Go for Fresh Flowers
Add a bouquet of fresh flowers to enjoy, in your favourite room. Farmers’ markets are still in full swing at this time of year so why not stop by and buy some fresh blooms along with your weekly hit of local goodies? Flower care tip: remove all the leaves below the water line and replace with fresh water every few days to get the most out of your bouquet.

Warmer Bedding
Everyone in the house will want to be extra comfy as it gets colder throughout the night. Change the lighter summer sheets and duvets for heavier ones in trendy fall themes and hues. If you have neutral colours, try adding hits of red, burgundy or gold.

Deck the Door & Class up Curb Appeal
A wreath is a “welcome” idea and they’re always available in many styles and colours. Head to your local garden centre to buy some bright mums and place them in your planters at the front entrance. Plant ornamental cabbages in the flowerbeds for hits of white, purple and fuchsia.

After you’ve made a few quick changes throughout the home, you’ll be ready to sip pumpkin spice lattes and admire your work.


Preparing your home’s exterior for fall

 Wednesday, September 19, 2018     Laurence Mongeau     House and Home Real Estate Market

Featured Photo

When autumn officially makes itself known with cooler conditions and rainy days, it’s an important time of year to maintain your home’s exterior. The following tips can serve as your guide to tidy things up, in order to prevent any damage that could occur during the fall and winter months.

Your backyard probably has a lot of twinkly lights and lanterns for the evenings you spent out there throughout the summer, but does your front yard have enough light sources? Daylight hours begin to lessen in the fall so it’s important to make sure walkways, the front entrance and above the garage have enough lighting for safety – and ambience.

It’s time to seed the lawn and take care of the rest of your landscaping. Trim any bushes and cover any tree trunks, shrubs, or flowers that need extra protection from the cold (or critters).

Turn off outdoor taps to prevent them from freezing and potentially bursting. Sprinkler systems should also be drained to prevent similar issues.

Check the seals on doors and windows. If any of the weather seals are broken or damaged, cold air can quickly seep into your home while warm air can escape. To avoid unnecessary high heating costs, fix or replace the weather stripping on drafty doors and windows.

Clean the eavestroughs and gutters to protect your home from serious and expensive water-related damages. Consider hiring a professional since they’ll also check all seams and leaks, flush downspouts to prevent clogging, and make sure everything drains properly.

Get those winter tools ready while the temperatures are still fairly pleasant, rather than scrambling when the first storm hits. Stow your lawnmower away after the grass gets cut for the last time (in the shed or back of the garage) and put the snowblower in a more convenient location as well as shovels, ice scrapers, and salt.


Sprucing up the driveway

 Wednesday, August 8, 2018     unknown     House and Home

Most times we settle for a ‘traditional’ driveway that’s plain old asphalt. Even though it’s practical and economical, there are many other ways to add more interest and elements of design. Take a look at these ideas for your pathway:

Concrete
Many options are available with concrete. Stamps, patterns, and colours make these options almost limitless. A smooth texture looks very sleek but can be slippery in the winter. To prevent slipping most companies recommend a ‘broom finish’, which creates a rougher surface for better traction. For a more modern look, create a pattern with strips of grass between the concrete.

Interlocking Stone
A wide variety of colours and stones are available in different sizes and materials. Formed concrete pavers are the least expensive whereas higher-end granite cobblestone pavers are more expensive. Interlock can be cut into many different shapes to fit your driveway, and can be assembled in a wide variety of patterns; including geometric, angles or circles.

Gate Ways on Edge
Add a gate to the end of your driveway for a distinguished look. Instead of plastic edging, use pavers to edge your driveway as an attractive way to keep planting areas neatly contained.

Cool Heat
In the winter, wouldn’t it be nice to have a driveway without ice? Heated driveways can be created with radiant floor heating systems and can be controlled with the flip of a switch from inside your home.

Lighting
Add warmth and charm by installing pathway lighting. LED lights recessed into the driveway cast a warm upward glow and highlight your home’s exterior. They’re also a practical safety feature for your home.

If you’re considering a new driveway and your budget calls for more than just repaving with asphalt, consider one of these options for added curb appeal.


Burlington Events in August

 Wednesday, August 8, 2018     unknown     Community News and Events

Burlington is sizzling this summer with all sorts of free and exciting events that will keep folks of all ages entertained. Whether you’re looking to dance, twist, or shout, downtown Burlington is without a doubt hosting some great events!

Jazz on the Plaza, The Burlington Performing Arts Centre
August 11 and 12, 4 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Don’t miss two-time JUNO-nominated musician Shirantha Beddage, a baritone saxophonist, composer and educator from Toronto. The Mike Downes Quartet caps off this FREE jazz event in downtown Burlington. There is nothing like original live jazz performances under a clear summer sky. Prepare to dance the night away at Jazz on the Plaza this August in Burlington!

The Rotary Club of Burlington Ribfest, Spencer Smith Park
August 31 - September 3

Burlington is home to the nation’s largest Ribfest! Canada’s Largest Ribfest, hosted by the Rotary Club of Burlington, lights up Spencer Smith Park from August 31 - Sept 3, Labour Day! This is the perfect end of summer event for locals and Halton regional residents. Let the kids forget about school for one last afternoon and you don’t even have to cook! It’s a win/win at Canada’s Largest Ribfest since 1996. For more information surrounding Ribfest visit http://www.canadaslargestribfest.com/

Gimli #489 Golden Rescue 5K Run/Walk Spencer Smith Park
August 18

This first time event is a run for rescued retrievers and dogs in need. The event takes place at Spencer Smith Park at 8 a.m., Saturday, August 18 in downtown Burlington. Dogs can join their owners and make friends at this great fundraiser for pets! Contact Kelly Arnott (905-512-2488) for more information.

Children’s Festival Spencer, Smith Park
August 19

The City of Burlington Children’s Festival is a top 100 event in Ontario and another great reason to live in the city! The downtown park turns into everything a kid could ever want. Games, activities, magic, face-painting, live performances and so much more! Be a kid again at this late summer festival at none other than Spencer Smith Park.

Open House - Taoist Tai Chi, 3390 South Service Rd.
September 6

Try something new this September! A free demonstration of Taoist Tai Chi will happen Thursday, September 6 at 3390 South Service Road in Burlington. Learn more about Tai Chi by interacting with instructors and find out how to join a beginners class. Contact the Burlington Branch - FLK Taoist Tai Chi at 905-634-4990 for more information.

Burlington is a top tier location without a doubt. A fantastic shopping scene, a beach, assorted types of real estate and restaurants plus, all sorts of huge free festivals!


Choosing a Home Inspector

 Tuesday, July 3, 2018     unknown     House and Home Real Estate Market

Before you make the big decision of buying a home, it’s a wise idea to get a professional home inspection. They can prevent a lot of issues for both buyers and sellers. It’s important to select the best inspector for the job. Here are some tips to consider when choosing a home inspector.

Reputation
Word of mouth is key and it will help you select an inspector that has a good reputation and who is successful and honest. Ask for references and contact a few past clients before you hire them.

See a Sample Report
Ask to view an example of the inspector’s reports and make sure they’re clearly written, include photos and how they identify any problems, explain why it’s important or how it can impact the home and list what should be done to fix it. It should provide enough information for you to make an educated decision about hiring them or not.

Credentials
Check and make sure the inspector has formal training and is certified to do the job. The inspector must be licensed and insured. You can ask to see the inspector’s proof of insurance, which can protect you if they’re negligent. Make a not if they’ve taken any specialized courses. Ask about their experience also: how long they have been in business, how many inspections have they done, and if this their full-time job.

Making sure all of these points are in place before choosing an inspector will help you get the best person for this important job.


What Clients Say…

Laurence is an absolute joy to work with; she is extremely knowledgeable, pleasant, full of energy, and dedicated to getting the job done. She managed to make everything to do with selling our home seemed almost effortless. I can't imagine selling our home without her! — Shelley M.
Laurence worked diligently at following up with each person who viewed the property... always available to let me know what kind of feedback she was receiving. — Stephanie B.
You always were there, available, and kept in contact with us when needed. You were self-motivated with an unbelievable amount of drive. — John & Rose-Anne P.
You are at the top of your class. I don't know of anyone that works as diligently at selling a property as you do! You have such an admirable work ethic and I have seen first hand how dedicated you are to your clients. — Dianna D.
The process of selling our house and purchasing another was made painless and exciting by you. Your tactful negotiation skills were invaluable in purchasing our dream home. — Maria & Jean-Michel B.
You were prompt, energetic, thorough and always had our best interest in mind. Selling our home for full asking price in just 19 days and finding a new one in less than a week is a true testament to your relentless commitment to excellence. — Angelo M.
I still think about it, it went so fast, I have a challenging work schedule, I needed a place fast and you came through and I trusted you. — Joseph D.
We are still amazed that it all happened so quickly and smoothly. You are an excellent listener, honest, reliable and caring. — Pina F & James A.
Just want to say thank you for your hard work and dedication in getting my home sold. You were very organized, professional and honest. It was a pleasure to work with you. — Gail A.
The best part of working with Laurence, besides her great skill of staging, was the fact that she made us feel like we were her only client even though we knew she was extremely busy. Overall, it was a very pleasant experience. — Greg & Lindsey W.
The staging job that Laurence did was fantastic! We barely recognized the house when it was done. Laurence was bursting with energy and enthusiasm and remained positive, reassuring and confident throughout the whole process. We listed our home Tuesday morning and by Tuesday night it was sold!!! — Shelley M.
Laurence, did an amazing job of representing us and selling our home. She is a hard-working, dedicated, knowledgeable, highly professional, and passionate - Real Estate Agent! We highly recommend Laurence as an agent, home stager, and negotiator to anyone considering buying or selling a home. Jim & Judy N. — Jim N.
Laurence did a phenomenal job representing us both for the sale of our property and the purchase of our new home. She took the time to work closely with us to make sure she understood all of our needs and wants for both the sale and purchase. We were also very impressed with her detail-oriented focus, knowledge of the market, and the effort she put into making sure things went smoothly. Right from the start Laurence took the reins and we knew that we were in good hands. Thanks for everything Laurence! — Ron and Leslie Quinsay
We worked with Laurence when it was clearly a Sellers Market. Laurence was persistent and helped us find a home in an area unknown to us. Thanks to Laurence's expertise and proactive approach we were able to avoid a bidding war and we got a great home for our family. We enjoyed working with Laurence, every step of the way. — Andrea B & Stephen M
Nous avons fait affaire avec Laurence alors que le marché était nettement favorable aux vendeurs. Laurence a été persistante et nous a aidés à trouver un domicile à notre goût dans un secteur qui ne nous était pas familier. Grâce à l’expertise et l’approche proactive de Laurence, nous avons pu éviter une guerre d’enchères et devenir propriétaires d’une maison exceptionnelle pour notre famille. Ce fut un plaisir de faire affaire avec Laurence du début à la fin du processus. — Andrea B & Stephen M
When my wife and I bought our first home together, Laurence was instrumental in finding the right home of us. Laurence will take the time to listen to your needs, and understand your situation. She works tirelessly to comb though your desired area, finding gems that best suit YOU, your budget, needs, and wishes. She is very professional, organized, and well connected within the community, all of which is very much to the client's benefit. Above all, she is a really easy person to get along with and will make the often stressful and overwhelming process of home buying, painless and exciting! I highly recommend Laurence Mongeau for your real estate needs! — Alex & Teresa H
Nous recherchions un courtier immobilier afin d’acheter une maison en Ontario. Une amie nous a donc recommandé de contacter Laurence Mongeau. Très rapidement, il y a eu un premier contact par courriel et ensuite par Skype. Nous avons vite constaté que Laurence possédait les qualités professionnelles que nous recherchions. En effet, Laurence : - Offre un excellent service à la clientèle; - Apprend à connaître ses clients et repère vite leur besoin réel; - Est parfaitement bien organisée; - Met un point d’honneur à obtenir le meilleur rapport qualité/prix pour ses clients; - Assure une totale transparence et donc priorise la communication avec ses clients; - Maîtrise bien le français et la culture francophone; - Offre une très large disponibilité pour ses clients; - Possède un réseau de contacts professionnels (inspecteurs, collaborateurs courtiers, etc) très compétents dans leur domaine; - Est très à l’aise avec les nouvelles technologies. C’est donc pour toutes ces raisons qu’à notre tour, nous vous recommandons très chaudement d’utiliser les services de Laurence Mongeau. Nous sommes certains que vous bénéficierez d’un service de haute qualité! Merci beaucoup Laurence pour l’excellent service que nous avons reçu! — Hélène P & Sébastien T
Laurence Mongeau treated us like family, guiding us to make this, the biggest purchase of our lives, the smartest move we ever made. We happened to be buying our first home during this crazy real estate boom, where list prices were only starting points in major bidding wars, and the inventory of homes available within our budget was limited. But Laurence handled these challenges with grace and professionalism, and kept us feeling positive throughout our search. We always felt we had options, and whatever house, whenever we asked, she got us a private showing. She accompanied us through every visit, and went in ALL the basements (even the scary ones!). She asked the tough questions, and got us the answers we needed. She warned us about potential problems, sharing her experience and knowledge with us, while pointing out the positives of each property without pressure. She always made us feel important, and that our search for the perfect home was her top priority. In the end, it was a very happy outcome. We purchased the perfect home for us, and we owe it all to Laurence. She was the one who found us our dream first home and it was her experience and strategy that helped us "win" it! And we truly feel like we did win, because we had the best agent in the biz on our side. Thanks, Laurence, you're number 1! Karina and Andrew J — Karina

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