Projects with the best Return on Investment

I am often asked what projects should a homeowner focus on when it comes to getting their home ready for sale.  Here is where I think you should be focusing that money!

Now I realize that not everyone has an unlimited budget for prepping a home – and the same goes for unlimited time! So what I am going to do here is go by the projects with the highest returns first – so that you can focus on these areas and then go from there. Also, I get asked ALL the time in this Seller's market whether or not it is still worthwile doing renovations.

It is ALWAYS going to pay off to put your best foot forward. 

A good first impression is incredibly important.  Also, the homes we are seeing with multiple bids on them, are the ones that show much better than their competitors.  So YES, it is worth it to still do the work!

So let’s get into the projects:

Project with THE BEST ROI: Paint!

This project has the best ROI for a few reasons – first, it is not expensive to paint and it is relatively easy to do.  However, if done properly, painting can absolutely freshen up a home, add lightness to a home, and flatter certain aspects.  Now there are things you are going to want to consider when picking your paint – particularly colour and finish.  Be sure to consult with your Realtor to see what buyers are responding most positively to.  Also, you don’t necessarily need to paint the entire house.  In my experience, the best returns have often come from painting main living spaces such as living rooms, dining rooms and kitchens.  Sometimes the primary bedroom, but rarely is there return on secondary bedrooms. According to a recent RE/MAX study, a fresh coat of paint typically garners a 60% return on your investment.

The Home’s Jewelry:

Another project that actually goes a long way can be a more minor update – but I like to call it changing your home’s “jewelry”.  In essence, if you have handles on your kitchen cupboards that are more dated, or old door knobs and handles, something as simple as swapping these out for newer, more modern options can change the look of the house.  You might want to freshen some other things up while you are at it – perhaps update a few light fixtures, but we aren't talking about going crazy here.  Changing your home’s jewelry combined with your paint, will really change the overall look of the rooms within your home!  While this is more difficult to estimate return, it is usually around the 50% return on investment.

Kitchen Refresh

Kitchen renovations always garner some of the largest returns when it comes to renovations. Makes sense - the kitchen really is at the heart of every home.  Adding new countertops or upgrading appliances can be relatively inexpensive upgrades that can have a huge impact. Again, talk to your Realtor before any major undertakings, because this needs to be assessed on a case-by-case basis.  But on average, kitchen returns usually have anywhere from a 50-100% return depending on the project!  While the returns might be higher than some other projects, I’ve put this one lower in the list just because the expense of some projects – for example a slab of stone - can be quite costly!


There can also be huge returns when it comes to replacing flooring within your home.  In fact, the return can be closer to 150% of your investment – so why do I place this renovation nearer to the end of this list?  The reason really is because there are a few factors that must be considered.  First, what type of flooring are you doing?  Keep in mind, carpet does not have as strong of a return.  Buyers will prefer hardwoods, laminates, or luxury vinyl plank typically over carpets. Not necessarily in that order, either.  But the most important factor in all of this – is proper installation.  I cannot tell you how many homes I’ve shown where an owner has recently installed new flooring but it was poorly installed.  There are gaps in between floor boards, or they are inexperienced in placement of the planks and it looks awful. You are only going to hit those 150% returns on investment if you are buying flooring that is on trend and having it properly installed.  So again, be certain that you talk to your Realtor before taking on any such project. As a further note here too, if there is carpeting in your home that you intend to leave, BE SURE to have it professionally cleaned a few days prior to listing. 

Bathroom Renovations

A renovated bathroom has around a 60% return as well – but is a much more difficult undertaking when it comes to dealing with plumbing, tiling, etc.  The best returns are usually seen when you are redoing the primary bathroom – perhaps creating more of a spa-like atmosphere.  But the majority of those renovations do start around $12,000 and go upwards from there – hence why I have put this one lower in the list.

Curb Appeal

I actually saved the best for last! Curb appeal is so incredibly important and likely one of the best ROI’s out there.  Your buyer will already be forming an opinion as they approach your home.  Think of some inexpensive projects like trimming hedges, trees.  Planting some shrubs, repainting the front door, adding some planters, and freshening up any trim or paint. This goes a LONG way – and I would guesstimate has some even higher ROI although I couldn’t find any statistics to support this!  But I promise, I've seen homeowners add 10's of thousands of dollars by simply removing a few overgrown, cedar hedges!

So even once you’ve done all of these projects, there is still one more project that I highly recommend - Ensure your home is properly staged. 

Do you have your furniture placed in the right areas of the home to maximize how it shows?  Will it flow for a typical buyer’s needs?  Are you painting the proper blank canvas? Staging is paramount to making sure your home shows in its best light.  And I don’t mean you have to bring in new furniture or anything crazy like that, necessarily.  Oftentimes this means working with your existing furniture and just tweaking it.  But again, that is something your Realtor can comment on.  And if you don't have a Realtor yet, call me!

Real Estate Advice in Winnipeg, Manitoba#AgentJen

Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945


Thoughts on the Winnipeg Fall Market, You Ask?

I was recently asked to share my thoughts on what the Fall market will be like in Winnipeg with Real Estate Magazine (REM).  I like to share my predictions, just so we can see how accurate they turn out to be, months from now.  Usually, there is a 50% chance I may just be right! Yell

Without further adieu, here was my response to the magazine:

Winnipeg maintains its status as a stable yet predictable real estate market. While we might not have the flashy headlines of some other cities, our market consistently chugs along, usually on an upward trajectory.

For the past two decades, Winnipeg has been undeniably characterized as a Seller's Market. Since 2004, we've consistently witnessed remarkably high absorption rates, even as interest rates began their ascent in 2022. In August 2023, MLS sales recorded a 2% increase compared to the previous year and a concurrent 2% rise from July 2023. With the recent announcement by the Bank of Canada to maintain the Overnight Rate, there's every reason to believe that this upward trajectory will persist.

As vacancy rates have declined, they've exerted upward pressure on average rents, pushing them above the national average. Interestingly, while average rents have climbed, the average sales price for a residential detached home in Winnipeg remains approximately half of the national average. Consequently, the allure of buying in Winnipeg has grown significantly, appealing to both local buyers and out-of-province investors.

Our condominium market was the one exception to the upward trending market over the last decade.  It experienced either declines or nearly stagnant sales for several years. However, we are now seeing renewed strength and nearly twice the volume of sell-through that we experienced pre-pandemic. Sales prices have surged by 5% this year, standing 10% above the five-year average. As the pandemic continues to wind down, I anticipate this resurgence will continue, marking an exciting time for condominium owners who have longed for gains in their equity, akin to their counterparts in the residential market.

Regrettably for buyers, the Seller's Market is expected to persist through the Fall of 2023. It will echo the familiar tune of the last two decades, characterized by high absorption rates, steady but measured increases in average sales prices, and the ever-present specter of bidding wars. In Winnipeg, slow and steady continues to be the winning strategy.

Top real estate agent in Winnipeg MB#AgentJen

Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945


City of Winnipeg Residential Building Permits - What Buyers and Sellers Should Know

In my experience working with clients here in Winnipeg (both Buyers and Sellers), I find many people do not understand the importance of pulling permits when doing home renovations. Also, there seems to be confusion on which projects require a permit and which do not. Many people are surprised to see the extensive list of improvements that DO require you to pull a permit with the City of Winnipeg.


As a general rule if you are changing “like for like” you do not need to pull a permit.

For example, if you are replacing a window with the same size window that was there previously, changing existing light fixtures, or updating the vanity in your existing bathroom no permit is required in general. However, many updates seem to be a “simple” job but DO require a permit through the City of Winnipeg. For example, adding recessed lighting, installing an egress window, adding a bedroom in a basement, finishing a basement, or building a deck higher than 2 feet. These jobs all require a permit. The city of Winnipeg has ample information available on their website in regard to projects that require permits and which do not. See this link:


Many people are surprised the permit history for a residential property in Winnipeg is public information. Anyone can use The City of Winnipeg’s permit search tool and view a home’s permit history. This search provides a list of building and trade permits (electrical, mechanical, plumbing, construction) issued after January 1, 2000 at any specific address in Winnipeg. You can click the link below to search any address in Winnipeg to view its permit history.


Yes, this system is newer and not perfect as it only dates back as far as 2000. So, any work done prior to this time will not show up in the system. However, if planning to do any renovations today, I feel that due to this system and the accessibility of this information to the public it is more important than ever to make sure all permits are being pulled for projects that require one.


Another major misconception about permits is people assume because you hire a professional contractor to complete a project, that permits were pulled. This is not always the case! When hiring licensed trade professionals to complete any work in your home be sure to ensure permits are being pulled. I have heard many stories where a contractor has told a client a permit was not necessary when it was. My advice is to do your due diligence here, make sure to educate yourself on which permits are necessary for your home renovation project, and make sure you are pulling them!


Work done without permits- What are the risks?


If the city of Winnipeg discovers work done in a home that required a permit and didn’t have one, the homeowner will be responsible for paying a fine, as well as then having the work inspected to make sure it meets building code. The latter is often times the most expensive part. For example, if someone added a bathroom to their home without pulling a plumbing permit, in order to determine if the plumbing was up to code this may include removing drywall, tile, etc. to inspect to see if the new plumbing was done correctly and is up to code. These costs would fall on the homeowner. REGARDLESS IF IT WAS THEM OR A PREVIOUS OWNER THAT COMPLETED THE WORK.


So how does this impact buyers and sellers in a real estate transaction? 


From the Buyers perspective: 

When showing homes to buyer clients I like to ensure my client understands the risk they will be taking on if purchasing a home where required permits were not pulled. For example, if we are viewing a property where the basement was finished without permits I would make sure they understand that if the city were to find out said basement was finished without a permit they may have to pay a fine for each permit that should have been pulled on top of the added expenses to be able to prove the work was done up to code. i.e. removing drywall etc. Not to mention if the work is not code compliant the then added expense of bringing the work up to code. I ensure my buyer has all of the information needed and then they can assess if the risk is worth it. I feel the “risk level” is a case-by-case basis depending on the work that was completed. But this is something you should definitely talk to your Realtor about before writing an offer on a property so there are no surprises down the road.


From a Sellers perspective:

Let’s say that you have done renovations to your home and did not pull the permits needed for the job. When filling out the Property Disclosure Statement you will be answering a question regarding permits. Item #3 on Manitoba’s Property Disclosure statement reads:

 “Are you aware of any additions or alternations to the buildings or improvements on the property that were made while you owned the property and were made without the required building, electrical, or other permit, or without obtaining a final inspection from the regulatory authority?”


In this case, you would have to answer “yes” and describe said work.

From experience, I feel some buyers are willing to take the risk but many are not depending on the scope of the work, thus limiting your buyer pool.

Yes, you may have spent money on putting in a Chef's kitchen, but if the work was done without proper permits being pulled, no matter how beautiful that kitchen may be, knowing it was done without a permit may spook buyers as they do not want to take on the risks described above. Educated buyers ARE checking permit history before moving forward with making an offer on a home and your home will stand out if buyers see all of the upgrades were completed with correct permits.


Long story short, it will always pay off to pull all required permits necessary when completing any upgrades to your home!


Please see the link below to the City of Winnipeg permits website for further information on how to pull permits and what projects need permits pulled.

And if you plan to buy or sell a home with myself or my team, you best believe that we will be scouring the permit histories for your properties!

Top Realtor in Winnipeg talks Permits


Samantha Scribilo

Tel: (204) 960-8851


Staging Options in Winnipeg - Is it worth the money?

If you are landing here, you are likely debating whether or not staging is worth the expenditure in your situation. I am here to say, that in the majority of cases - IT IS!  A well-staged home, on average, sells for around 10% more than it's unstaged counterpart.  But more importantly, I want to tell you that:

Staging a home doesn't have to break the bank.

Staging is one of the most important tasks in preparing your home for a potential buyer.  Good staging will accomplish a few tasks:

  1. It will present a blank canvas that buyer’s can envision themselves in
  2. It will improve flow of the space and actually make the home feel bigger (think less congested)
  3. It will eliminate or reduce buyer objections
  4. It will statistically get your home sold more quickly.

I've likened it to creating a blank canvas - which is NOT to mean sterile or devoid of emotional appeal.  Instead we focus on the the importance of neutralizing a space while preserving the emotional appeal that will attract our buyer.  Blank canvas does mean a touch of minimalism and muted colors. Why, you may ask? Because the majority of potential buyers prefer not to see the current homeowner's personal life on display when considering a property for purchase. Instead, they want to envision their own life in that space. Therefore, we always recommend depersonalizing the home by packing away family photos, religious items, and the like to be taken to the seller's next residence.

Our staging techniques revolve around crafting a lifestyle that resonates with the neighborhood and the demographics of the area. We tailor our design plans accordingly, ensuring they align with the potential buyers' preferences and aspirations. Staging a home truly involves much more than merely arranging furniture. As Realtors, our ultimate objective is to diligently represent our clients' best interests, taking into account the nuances of each property and its potential buyers. 

There are a variety of options when it comes to staging:

  • Full home stage
  • Accessory stage
  • Rework stage
  • Virtual stage

All of our listings begin with sending a stager in to assemble a plan for the property.  As your agent, we will have likely determined just which stage would be best for your property and given instruction as to goals with the stager.  During this staging appointment, the stager will then go with you room-by-room and give her recommendations.  There is a written plan to follow, so don't worry too much about taking notes! She will also talk to you (if we haven't already) about projects around the house that can minimize buyer objections – for example touch-up painting, etc.  The idea is to have the canvas ready when furniture starts to be brought in.

Full Home Stage

Let’s start with what is involved in a full home stage.  This is usually staging a home from a vacant position or nearly vacant position.  The stager will be bringing in a full suite to dress up your house including Living Room furniture and accessories, dining room, bedroom, etc.  You name it, they do it.  The process itself can be incredibly quick. They show up with their movers on staging day and unload a truck and have the entire place staged in a matter of hours.  Oftentimes, this does also involve some hanging of art, etc.  One of my favourite tasks that stagers do is bringing in mirrors to reflect natural light coming in. A strategically-placed mirror can brighten up spaces and make rooms feel larger. Here are some homes we have fully-staged recently:

Realtors that do staging in winnipeg Realtors doing staging in Winnipeg Manitoba

Linden Woods Realtors staging in winnipeg manitoba

There are a few different homes used above ranging across various price-points. All of these homes were staged in under 5 hours with the assistance of a full team of movers, stagers, stager assistants, and or course - the Realtor.

This staging is best utilized when a home is mostly vacant or next to vacant and needs a lot of help in demonstrating just how to use the various spaces. Bonus rooms are great, but if a Buyer can't see a vision for how to use it, it can feel like "too much house" or "wasted space".


The cost for a stage such as this is typically around $2500 and upwards (depends on the size of the home and how much furniture is required) for the first month, should the seller wish to pay out of pocket. Then, there is a monthly ongoing fee for rental (around half of the initial "installation" amount). Usually, I will take on the expense of this and wrap it into commissions, should the Seller not be comfortable with a huge cash outlay. 

I am happy to take on that risk, I believe in staging that much!

We will discuss these options with you, and let you decide what is right for you.  Sometimes, staging isn't right for your situation.  In all honesty, maximizing dollar return, while often the most common goal, doesn't ALWAYS have to be the end-goal. And that's okay, too! 

A recent case study: In the case of the home pictured above with the blue furniture, this owner had three opinions of value given. Myself and two others. The two other Realtors suggested selling the home in as-is condition without paint touch-ups, a few minor updates (upgrading a few light fixtures, flooring repair, deep clean, etc). Weekend-warrior type items, really. I suggested the opposite, to tackle these projects as there was a substantial dollar return to doing so. I accepted wrapping the fee of the proper home prep (staging, minor painting, deep cleaning) into the commissions, at a cost of $5000. The Seller informed me upon sale, that we had gotten him $25,000 more than the other two Realtors had quoted him as his "max" selling price. A worthy investment, if you ask me!

Accessory Stage

The next option is an accessory stage.  This is a more commonly-used option, I find. Most sellers already have furniture that suits their home, and sometimes it just needs help in a few key other areas.  For this type of stage, our stager comes through and makes a list with the seller, of items that need to be brought in.  Sometimes the seller might already have the items the stager needs elsewhere in the home and we simply move things around.  Other times however, a second visit is scheduled and the stager brings in the missing pieces.  Sometimes this can be art, sometimes it means bedding, towels, throw-pieces, smaller chairs, etc.  This does not involve hiring movers and is much less costly as a result.  Usually, we are paying less than $500 for these accessory-type stages and are already including it in our commisison.  Below is a recent accessory stage we did for a client.  He was downsizing (in his 90's), and keeping some of his "favourite" pieces - this couch included. Here, we brought in pieces to accent and modernize the home.

best realtors staging winnipeg

This home had a bidding war, despite selling in December right before Christmas, and in a declining market (and no, we weren't underpriced). Well worth the investment!

Virtual Staging

Another option for a vacant listing stage is virtual staging.  I’ll include some before and after pictures so that you can see what I’m referring to.  In essence, no staging is physically done within the property.  We are paying a graphic designer to take the pictures of vacant rooms and doing an overlay with furniture to show size and scale.  Some before and afters:

virtual staging in winnipeg real estate virtual staging winnipeg

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top realtors winnipeg staging realtor winnipeg

The bedroom picture above was a condominium we sold in Tuxedo. The condominium was next to vacant with the exception of a couple of lights in the bedroom to brighten things up.  We had the photos virtually staged and we put the listing up for a few days prior to allowing showings to begin.  Day one had several showings that resulted in two offers.  Competing offers on a condominium in Winnipeg are NOT common.  The owner was thrilled with the results!

This is most appropriate when timelines are tighter, or when the budget doesn’t allow for a full physical stage – because the pictures can be edited for as little as $20 USD per picture.  The impact is pretty significant though.  I would say the majority of listings that we have with virtually staged pictures, have much higher-than-average traffic visiting them. The process itself is quite simple – we take the images from our photographer, send them off to our graphic designer that does our virtual staging.  We usually get them back within 48 hours from the time the pictures are originally taken. Now just a couple notes for this- you need good pictures to work from.  Professional quality, ideally.  I’ve seen virtual staging on bad pictures and it just looks awful.  Secondly, not all virtual stagers are created equal.  I’ve seen some very poorly done examples on even good quality photos. Thirdly - you should denote in your listing that some images are virtually staged, so Buyers aren't shocked when they show up! We have found using a blend of virtually staged combined with unstaged images to have the best result. And last but not least, we do not have the technology YET to virtually stage a video - but that will hopefully change soon!

In Conclusion...

There are a variety of staging options when selling.  However, the type of staging that we will recommend will be specific for your house, situation and timeline.  Always seek advice from your Realtor on just what needs to be done to show your home in its best light. But what I do want you to take away from this, is that homes really do benefit from staging in some regard. In a recent study done by the National Association of Realtors, 96% of buyers agents agree that home staging has an effect on how buyers view homes. Further, when it comes to your bottom line, a staged home will typically sell more.  So quite frankly – if you aren’t properly staging your home – you are likely leaving money on the table!

More on that study, here:,statistics%20may%20change%20some%20minds.

best real estate agent in winnipeg MB#AgentJen

Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945


Spring maintenance tips for every homeowner!

The time has come, spring has sprung, and you can’t wait to spend some time outside. Spring is the perfect time to refresh your outdoor space and get it ready for the summer months ahead. Here are a few tips to keeping your outdoor space looking and working its best:


1.      Empty your gutters: After a long fall and winter your gutters may be full of debris such as, leaves, branches and seeds. This can lead to clogged downspouts and result in water overflowing out of the eaves and pooling around your foundation. If you know anything about foundations, the number one rule is keep water away!


2.      Trim trees and shrubs: Shrubs, trees and perennials may have a mind of their own when growing. Pruning your plants can help them stay healthy, clean up their appearance and result in a much fuller plant.



3.      Weeding: Although this is one of the more time-consuming tasks, it leaves your yard looking A+. You can hire a lawn service to come and spray for weeds or do it yourself. If you are looking for a more organic alternative, vinegar and water has been shown to work just as well! Unfortunately, in garden beds and planters you may have to get a little dirtier and get on your hands and knees. Make sure to remove weeds from the roots to prevent more weeds from returning in the future. PRO TIP: if you are tired of pulling weeds in your garden beds, a thick layer of mulch over your soil should prevent weeds from returning in the future.


4.      Lawn Care: Rake up old dead grass and any leftover debris from the fall to ensure your lawn thrives.



5.      Re-seed your lawn: Winter months here in Winnipeg can be harsh on your lawn. Sprinkle some seeds and topsoil over any dead spots to bring life back to your lawn, but always remember to water!


6.      Wash your exterior surfaces: Using a pressure washer, wash the exterior of your home, garage, deck and patio to remove any dirt mildew or stains. Make sure when using your pressure washer to keep the nozzle at a good distance from the surface as it can remove the paint or stain from your home or deck.



7.      Wash your windows: Clean windows makes your home look great from both the inside and out.


8.       Plant flowers: You can plant flowers to add a pop of colour to your yard by adding them to your garden beds and planters. Hanging baskets are always nice as well!


9.      Paint/stain: Make sure to touch up any areas on your home that may be prone to rot. Any exposed wood can be susceptible to weather, therefore adding a coat of paint can help seal it up.  A fresh coast of stain can help an aging deck or fence look new again.



10.  Add some light and decor: Who doesn’t love a good mood lighting. Lighting can create a relaxing ambiance for you to sit back and relax after a long day. If you don’t have the wiring necessary to plug in lights, you’re in luck, there are now tons of great solar options as well.


One very important thing to note is that safety is the number one priority when doing any spring cleaning or maintenance. For instance, if you have a two storey with a lot of windows, perhaps consider hiring a professional. A lot of these tasks can also be quite time consuming, there are professionals all over the city that can help you get the results you want.


Whether you are doing it yourself or hiring a professional, maintaining the exterior of your home and your yard will create a beautiful space that both you and your neighbours will enjoy! 

Best Realtor Advice in Winnipeg#AgentAshton

Ashton Augert

Phone: (204) 781-1767


Planning for your House Hunting Trip to Winnipeg!

It is house hunting trip season!  We normally start to see an influx of calls begin in February/March with planned travel into the City for house hunting trips in April - June.  Or at least those are our busiest periods for the house hunting season!  Everyone's situation can vary so don't feel bad if you aren't in this same timeline... but today we want to explain a little about the process and what to expect.  Without further adieu, here is the script I wrote for a more recent YouTube video that we shot (will share that when it is edited). 

Are you planning to move to Winnipeg?  Rest assured that you have made a FABULOUS choice!  Today, I’m going to touch upon what you need to consider for your upcoming House Hunting Trip (or as we often abbreviate it to – HHT)!

Our team specializes in relocations of all types.  Whether it be for Canadian Armed Forces, Air Force, Naval or Army, RCMP, Executive relocations, etc. This is an area we are well-versed within.  For those that need to check, we are on the BGRS approved Realtor list, and these relocations are something that we specialize in!  BGRS alone is responsible for close to 15,000 moves across Canada, every year. They have very strict policies that must be adhered to, so knowing those rules and having a Realtor with that expertise is paramount!

Now for those that have been on a House Hunting Trip before, you know that it is a very rapid-fire and somewhat stressful process. For those that don’t, I warn you, a lot of the process IS trial by fire. Much of the stress is that a typical house hunting trip only lasts about one-week.  This time, goes by so incredibly fast!

The timelines when you begin your search, typically looks something like this:

  1. Receive notice of your potential job and location change.  If this is going to be a BGRS move, they often call it your posting message. Usually this is several months out from your actual start or reporting date.
  2. Register on the BGRS site (if this applies for your specific move).  There are resources – including a Relocation Directive that are accessible to you in your portal.
  3. Decide what to do with your existing accommodations.  If rented, that can oftentimes be as simple as giving notice to your landlord of your intention to move. But if you have a home to sell – you don’t technically have to sell it. You CAN keep it. For those in the BGRS program, there are some incentives to keeping your home too – it depends on the situation, but CFIRP rewards members when they don’t sell as there are cost savings inherent with not paying commission, lawyer fees, etc. Just a note – regardless of what you decide to do, you should be getting an appraisal for your existing home.  The appraiser does not have to be from the BGRS supplier list, but we do recommend it as they often know the BGRS rates, and processes for filing.
  4. Consult the professionals.  This perhaps could come in even before the steps above.  Check the lists provided by your employer for a list of recommended Realtors. Have them consult with you on your current home and what is realistic for the market in terms of pricing, timelines. It is ALWAYS a good idea to get an idea of where you stand.  You can also ask them for recommendations at your destination.  Do some research too on Realtors at your destination.  Now is a good time to connect and just begin collecting information on what the process looks like at your destination. 
  5. Working out HHT timing. When possible, it is always nice to arrange for a door-to-door move.  However, that isn’t always possible.  For those in RCMP, usually you aren’t sent on your house hunting trip until you have confirmation that your home has sold.  For those moving through CAFRD or CFIRP, you can schedule this trip at any point, even before your house is on the market.  This is also why I recommended finding a Realtor that you are confident in, in the previous step.  They can advise on timing.  In Winnipeg, typical possession dates are usually around 1-3 months, but this can also be impacted by the seasons and school years. Getting recommendations from a Realtor as to what the optimal date would be for your house hunting trip based on when you are to report, will greatly improve your chances of success, while here!
  6. With these initial discussions, you will have hopefully gotten a sense of what the market is like at your destination.  If you haven’t yet, now is the time to get a pre-approval in place.  Depending on timelines, you may not necessarily want to file for a formal pre-approval at this time, as the rate holds are often only good for 90 – 120 days.  BUT, you could have those initial discussions with the banker, start submitting all of the paperwork you need so that it is on file (and not packed up) when the time comes to file the formal pre-approval application. What I will say here, is it is important to have a lender that is familiar with the market you are entering.  I know for us, Manitoba actually moves quite fast on financing – with 3-5 day responses typical on a financing condition on an offer.  We’ve had clients from out of province with lenders that requested double or triple that, which has actually killed deals.  This doesn’t mean you have to have a lender from Manitoba – but one that is confident they can meet those deadlines, is!  If ever you need recommendations for a good mortgage broker here, just reach out as we are happy to put you in touch!
  7. Schedule your travel.  Be sure to follow the proper procedures. To fly, you should be traveling more than 599 kilometers for MOST of the relocations we handle.  However, each employer and situation can be different. Also, some employers will ask you to book your travel through their app or in-house relocation services. Now is a good time to familiarize yourself with that.  You are also typically given a stipend toward a rental vehicle.  I have had clients travel in and not take advantage of this as they preferred travelling together. While I do think the initial phases are nice to have within the car together, so that I can explain the city as we drive, whereabouts we are in relation to landmarks that I feel are important to you, where the schools are, etc.  I ALSO think it is important for you to have your own vehicle while here.  More on that later!
  8. Have your Realtor start sending you listings.  Now is a good time to start tracking the market at your desired destination.  Realtors can set you up on portals – with very minimal effort – and I know once you are setup on the portal from my end, you will be able to start tracking average days on market for the homes you like, what they are selling for, and start to get a feel for the different neighbourhoods.  Being prepared to hit the ground running, when here, is important.
  9. Pack for your trip! If you need advice on the weather and how to dress, let us know!  For the purposes though of your house hunting trip, there are a few items that we WILL need you to bring.  There are three things that we have agreed on within our team that are necessary: 1. Shoes that you can easily slip on and off (I know this sounds silly, but when you are seeing 30-40 houses in 2-days time – tying and untying shoes can become exhausting.  2. A piece of government-issued photo identification.  We are REQUIRED to identify you for anti-money-laundering purposes when writing our offers. 3.  A cheque!  Nobody has cheques anymore, and we know that.  If this is you, there is always a workaround.  BUT, when submitting offers in Manitoba, we do provide a deposit along with them.  It can be a personal cheque, too.  The amount of the cheque you submit with your offer tends to vary based on the price of home, so reach out to us in advance so we can advise on how much should be set aside when planning this trip.
  10. Send us your top 10-15 listings (ideally in ranked order).  We like to load the tours for the favourites quite heavily on the first few days, so that you’ve seen all of your favourites off-the-hop.  This process isn’t just a process of selection, it is also a process of elimination – so seeing as many as possible, as quickly as possible, helps get quick clarity on the market when here.  Also, do Google drive-bys of the favourites.  Sometimes homes look great on paper, but when here you discover they back onto a highway or cemetery (true stories from the past)!
  11. Arrive!  Day 1 is often eaten up with travel, travel delays, getting your rental cars, checking into your accommodations, etc.  Depending on your scheduled arrival time, we will sometimes book showings for this day.  If we don’t have any showings scheduled for Day 1 though, I highly recommend starting to drive the city.  Check out the neighbourhoods you think speak to you.  Figure out commute times and what that drive would look like for you.  Oftentimes, we can already eliminate a good chunk of the homes you are seeing once you are here and have driven the neighbourhood, physically.  Hopefully things look as you thought they should from your google drive through.
  12. Day 2 and 3 we like to load up on showings.  Day 2 is usually the heavier day.  If I can, I try to schedule 12-14 showings in.  I ONLY recommend this for relocations though. I admit, this day I tend to book more abbreviated tours.  We are essentially doing quick walk-throughs with a plan to revisit the favourites and do a more thorough look should any rise to the top during these tours.  Day 3 is often visiting the ones lower on the list, or any new market entrants, and then revisiting the favourites from the day prior.
  13. Strategize.  Much of your success will come from understanding what parts of the process will lead to success.  Also, knowing the local rules and ebbs and flows of the real estate market, are important.  For example, if there is an offer date in Manitoba – that IS the date.  There are no bully offers here – the Seller cannot review your offer until the day stipulated on the MLS. It is also not common here to do a pre-possession walk through of the home, either.
  14. Submit an offer.  I’m not saying that you MUST submit an offer by day 3, but I would say it is not uncommon for this to happen. Sometimes if people haven’t found a home by the end of Day 3, they start to panic.  BUT, do not fret.  It happens, and sometimes it means we need to re-evaluate the search.  Sometimes a neighbourhood might just not feel right once here, or the timelines can feel overwhelming.  If you haven’t found the home by Day 3 though, this might be a good time to drive some neighbourhoods, get a feel for your surroundings, and re-evaluate what you are looking for and revisit your original goals in your future home. If you DO submit an offer on Day 3 – your timing couldn’t be more ideal.  This will give us time to schedule a home inspection while you are still here, so that you can be present for it. At the time of writing this blog, we are in a Seller’s market.  In competition, it can be difficult to have an offer accepted with a home inspection condition.  But we can always discuss the option of doing a pre-inspection, prior to submitting an offer.  This way you have the benefit of doing the home inspection, without risking losing the house in a bidding war because of the condition.  The negative though is you may still not win the bid, and the home inspection will be for not.
  15. Get connected with a lawyer and insurer.  These are usually a bit lower on the priority list, mostly because the process of finding the right home is the biggest challenge.  But once a deal finalizes, we are going to need insurance in place prior to possession or the lawyer won’t give you the keys.  You will also need to know which lawyer you wish to use.  Check with your employer to see if they have a list of approved suppliers.  BGRS does have a list, and we can also give advice in this regard.
  16. Have fun!  The last few days of your travel tend to be lighter in terms of the stress/planning process.  Now is a good time to check out the Winnipeg landmarks.  We can advise on all of the hot spots and popular destinations that we think would be worth a visit, while here.
  17. Key handover is done by the lawyers in Manitoba.  Again, pre-possession walk-throughs are not a common occurrence here, as odd as that sounds.  Your lawyer will give you keys with specific instructions on when you can access the property, meter readings, and the process for reporting if there are any issues. Because we aren’t privy to a lot of these discussions, we often won’t know when you plan to access the property.  BUT we do WANT to be there.  So please keep us in the loop, so we can visit you
  18. Don’t forget to file your paperwork!  There are a lot of reimbursable expenses that you can often claim, so be sure you are uploading your receipts according to your employers policies!

A few other points - everyone's search varies.  Don't feel bad if you do things out of this order, or if the timelines just don't work for you or your situation.  We customize our plans for the client, not vice versa.  There is no true mould that you must fit into!

A few other reminders, too:

  • Remember closing costs.  Depending on the arrangements with your employer, some will require you to pay the fees up front and then reimburse.  Some will have direct-billing so you do not have to front any funds.  If you want a list of typical buying costs in Manitoba, let us know.  We have a resource assembled for you.
  • Also let us know if you would like a copy of our home buying guide.  It goes over these costs and the buying process in greater detail than what I’m able to cover here.
  • We have also prepared a house hunting trip guide – with a brief overview of some neighbourhoods, a little bit more detail of each step along the way, some supplier recommendations, hotel recommendations, restaurant recommendations, and more!
  • If you haven’t already, be sure to watch some overviews of the neighbourhoods we service on our YouTube channel.  These are high-level overviews of the various communities throughout Winnipeg. 
We also put this into a video format for you, should you be interested:

Top Realtor in Winnipeg talks about your house hunting trip#AgentJen

Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945


Foreign Buyer Ban in Canada

I'm sure you've heard of the Foreign Buyer Ban, but given the rollout of it, there hasn't been a lot of light shed by the Canadian Government.  What is it?  Who does it impact?  Where does it apply? When will it take effect and for how long? And WHY?  Well read on, as today I am attempting to address just that.  I add my own comments at the end, and fair warning, while I try to not get political on our Website or blog - I did go a little political this time. I apologize in advance for the stronger opinions shared!

In recent years, the Canadian housing market has been experiencing a significant influx of foreign buyers, particularly in major cities. This has led to concerns about the affordability of housing for Canadian residents, as well as potential negative impacts on the overall economy. In response to these concerns, the Canadian government has implemented a foreign buyer ban.  But what does this really mean?

The Foreign Buyer Ban went into effect January 1st, 2023.  And here is what you really need to know:

  • The Why: We are experiencing a housing crisis in Canada.  Projections for the necessary amount of homes to be built by 2030 is 3.5 million in order to achieve housing affordability for everyone living in Canada.  However, CMHC reports that we are going to be about 1.2 million units short given current rates of construction.  Article can be viewed here:
  • The Who: Who is impacted, you ask? Anybody deemed a non-Canadian.  So if you are a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident of Canada or a person registered under the Indian Act, do not fret.  You can continue on business as usual.  However, if you are considered a foreign citizen, OR are a foreign corporation, then this will apply to you.  BUT, there are exemptions
    • If you are a non-resident but married to a Canadian Citizen, you are exempt
    • If you are a refugee or someone with temporary resident status (some terms and conditions may apply)
    • You have worked in Canada for a substantial period of time and filed tax returns in Canada for three out of the four years prior to purchasing
    • An international student with similar stipulations to the above but you have to have spent most of the last five years in Canada.  At which point you can buy a property up to $500,000.
    • Some members of international organizations or diplomats living in Canada.
    • There are actually more situational exceptions too, but these need to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  • The Where: Is not necessarily as clear.  For instance, much of this ban is targeted for properties around metropolitan areas.  In Manitoba, that means Winnipeg, Brandon, Portage La Prairie, Steinbach, Winkler and Thompson. Be careful though with what is defined by the act as a Metropolitan area.  For Example, the Winnipeg Metropolitan area is considered to be as far north as Grand Marais, as far East as Nourse, as far South as Ste Agathe, and as far West as Poplar Point. Source:,%27id%27:%27S0503%27%7d%5d%7d
  • The When: Thus far, it is only supposed to be a two-year policy. 
  • The What: it impacts a variety of real estate options including detached or attached houses, condominiums, or really any real property.  HOWEVER, it does not impact the purchase of homes with 4 dwelling units or more.

The Government has enforced some strict policies to prevent those looking for ways to skirt the laws.  Any Foreign Buyer caught to purchase a home during this period would be forced to sell the property.  Also, any profits from the sale go back to the Federal Government. Any Realtor, lawyer, or mortgage broker that assisted in brokering the transaction would be fined $10,000.  What this means for our clients?  We are having all Buyers in the next two years fill out one additional form, confirming they are not Foreign Buyers.  Otherwise though, it is business as usual.

My concerns about the policy, you ask? I think that these policies are short-sighted, and while they might alleviate some market pressures today, we are just kicking the can further down the road.  The ban really only addresses the symptoms of a problem but not the underlying root cause – which is and always will be a lack of supply and affordable housing options. There are additional side effects to policies such as this:

  • Much of the purchasers in Manitoba in new construction areas are newcomers to Canada.  We have effectively removed incentives for many builders to continue to want to develop homes. The resulting negative from this is a decrease in new housing starts which has a negative impact on GDP.
  • It will become more difficult for businesses to attract and retain employees.  The Canadian Dream does not include renting, in my opinion.
  • It does not address underlying issues.
  • Decreases in foreign investment and economic growth as a result of decreased investment in Canada.
  • An even bigger “bubble” in the market, two years out from now when the backlog of the Foreign Buyers wishing to get a foothold in the Canadian Real Estate Market, look to buy their piece of the pie.

There are opportunities to be had from this.  Unfortunately, some of those are on the backs of those that have been disadvantaged from the policies.  We have already seen rents increase in Winnipeg, this year. I would anticipate this trend continuing.  People moving to Canada will still need nice, affordable places to move and these programs will put further strain on that rental market.  I also think that there will be Foreign Buyers that look for more creative ways to own real estate here.  Perhaps buying a four-plex (exempt category) with a goal of living in one unit and renting the remaining out.  Where there is a will, there is always a way!

In my opinion, the Canadian Government wants something that fits nicely on a banner and can be accomplished within four years or less, given election cycles.  The ban is going to end right when elections are upcoming, it was put out without much notice in December, right before Christmas. 

Not a lot of thought appeared to go into it. I am not going to lie.  I don’t have the right answer as to what the proper solution is – there truly is no silver bullet.  However, if the underlying issue is that of supply and demand, I think there are policies that the Canadian Government should enact to encourage those to increase supply. Perhaps incentives to builders that are developing more affordable housing.  What we really need, is more supply after all!  Also, the painfully slow/rigorous process to get houses built is another hangup.  We are often told of delays at permitting, infrastructure applications, etc.  I do still think that it is important to have proper inspections – I don’t want homes being slapped up that are dangerous to live within.  But what about next-day inspections instead of weeks or months out?  We could save months upon months for the build process in Manitoba alone! Part of the problem is ultimately that the policies such as this take longer to enact and enforce.  It is not the quick fix that politicians may be looking for.  This appears to be more political theatre than assessing the core issues.   

Read about the Act here:

Other Articles:

If you prefer to digest this in a video format, here is the YouTube video I shot covering this topic:


This article was written before parts of the ban were repealled, so some of my concerns have now been addressed.  However, plenty still remain.  For information on what has changed, here is where you can read more:

While I will say this amendment is appreciated, it still feels like a whole lot of political theatre!

Realtors specializing in Foreign Buyer Ban Winnipeg#AgentJen

Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945


Possession Day Woes - What to Do if Things Aren't as Expected?

Possession days. Being a Realtor we see a LOT of possession days with our clients whether that be on the Buying side or the Selling side.  While possession days can be an amazing celebration, they can also be a cause for concern in some cases. Sellers are supposed to leave the home in the same condition it was when the purchasers viewed the property but that isn’t always the case.

Best case scenario you get the keys to your new home, your keys work to get into the home and when you test all the appliances and mechanical parts of the home they are in the condition you saw them when you viewed the home and made your offer. Awesome!

However, this isn’t always the case and some clients are more sensitive to these issues than others. A home is a used commodity. Even new construction homes rarely are perfect on move-in day and usually have a period of repairs for which the Builder attends the home and does touch-ups.  But that isn’t the case for a re-sale home. Sure everything is meant to be in the same condition as when you offered but what if it isn’t? For example, Sellers are required to give access to the home on possession date, that does not necessarily mean that they have to provide you with keys to the home. It could be an access code for a keypad or it could be a garage door remote. We have even had clients in the past where the access given was a window left open a crack, true story. Now, I wouldn’t consider any of those options to be great ones and we have paid many times for locksmiths for clients who couldn’t get into their house on possession because the keys or code didn’t work, or were altogether missing.

But why am I mentioning these situations?  Well mostly because possession days can be challenging. As much excitement as there, is you have to remember that this is likely one of the largest purchases most will make in their lives. So, taking stock of the home and functioning systems is an important part of that possession day routine.

With home sales the important term is caveat emptor, which is Latin for “buyer beware”. This places the burden on buyers to reasonably examine an item for sale (in this case a home), also known as due diligence, and take these factors into consideration prior to submitting any offer to purchase. Now let’s say all you have properly examined the property (whether be it your trained or careful eye or via inspection) and you have done all your due diligence.  Your offer was accepted and now it is your possession day! You pull up to your new house, you move in and you start living your life. Now a week goes by and all of a sudden there is a clogged toilet, or a tap starts to leak, who is responsible for that? The Sellers? The Buyers? If you go by case law, it is most likely the Buyer’s issue. An offer to purchase, unless specifically listed in as-is condition, typically requires the home and chattels to be in the same condition they were in, at the time of submitting an offer. Many agents will also add in a line item that specifically asks for mechanicals, plumbing, electrical etc. to be working on possession and sometimes even past possession. This can be referred to as a promise that would survive closing.  Most real estate lawyers will try to eliminate a promise like this or ask that it be shortened to just the day of possession. The reason being, Sellers do not want to be responsible for a warranty once they no longer own or have access to the property. Sure, the lights should work when you flip the switch and the water should run down the drain but like anything else all parts of a home need to be maintained and can break down over time.

The real trouble comes when you do check EVERYTHING on possession day and items might not be working as expected. We have seen it all - clients moving in and appliances were swapped, or inclusions on the contract were removed from the property. Seriously, it is unfortunate but these things do happen. We try to the best of our ability to represent the home and the clients and ensure the transaction goes smoothly. But there is a human element to every move – and definite room for error as result.

Here are some tips to help protect you on possession day.


  • Take meter readings (photos with time stamps are ideal)
  • Take video of sinks/tubs/toilets/fixtures draining and running with no leaks. We often fill the sink or tub to “force” a load of water, just to show it is operating properly.
  • Take video of lights working
  • Take video of the appliances working. If they are staying with the home, that is.
  • Check your keys! If you have multiple keys for the property, kindly give one to your lawyer (so that the Buyers can walk through that front door on possession).  Leave the rest on the kitchen counter.


  • Check all appliances included with the sale
  • Run the cycles on everything (dishwasher, dryer, washer, stove). It is important to test and notify of anything not functioning properly, right away.
  • Take meter readings (photos with time stamps are ideal)
  • Test the furnace and A/C (weather permitting for this one.  Don’t try to run it in the dead of winter!)
  • Also test fireplaces, hot tubs, jacuzzi tubs, etc. If there is a motor in it, you should likely test it.

If everything is working, then great!! Order a pizza and pat yourself on the back for moving all of your heavy furniture into your home.

If something isn’t working or you can’t figure out how to operate something, reach out to your realtor. It is not uncommon for your Realtor to reach out to the Realtor for the other party and get some answers on how to operate different items within the home.  If it is something that requires servicing from a tradesperson, then it would be a good time to get someone to your home. Who is responsible should really take a backseat to having something working, especially if it is something like a furnace not firing in -30°C in January. Sometimes it is easy and parties are willing to work it out between themselves. Sometimes it is not, and your only real recourse in those situations is to try and recoup your money from them in small claims court, which no one wants to do. But putting people on notice to issues is incredibly time sensitive.  As a Buyer, if you find an issue, the further you are away from possession, the less chance you have of proving it was a Seller issue.

At the end of the day, our best possession days are those when everyone is happy and they find the home just as they had expected it. We will do everything in our power to assist you in the process no matter what situation arises, we know who you will need to call and always have a list of good service providers in almost any industry on hand.  So always be sure to reach out to your Realtor – no matter how big or small you think the issue may be.

Here’s to plenty more happy possession days in 2023!!

Best real estate agents in winnipeg manitoba#AgentLogan

Logan Queen

Tel: (204) 226-1261


Summer Camps in Winnipeg (2023) - The Complete List of Options!

Every year, we have a number of clients migrating to Winnipeg that are looking for fun activities to register their children in.  Also, as parents, I am shocked every year when I talk to fellow parents and they inform me of summer programs I had never heard of!  So as a way to keep track of the offerings, I figured I would develop a comprehensive list of the options.

After sending it out to so many of my parent friends, I realized, you could ALL use a more exhaustive list.  To that end, here is what I have come up with.  I have endeavoured to make this list as exhaustive as possible, but I am human and can miss some options.  If there is a camp that you would recommend, please send it my way.  I want to have a complete list of options all in one spot, so that we all have an easy spot to check year after year.

This is my second year doing this list, and I’ve already discovered several that were missed last year thanks to your comments and feedback.  So let’s keep this list a growing (and updating too, if you find that there are service providers that are no longer in the business).

Also – if anybody else ever gets their child into the Leisure Guide programs, please let me know your secrets.  We have high speed internet, multiple computers, but STILL manage to get locked out of the activities we want for our 3 kiddos.  Le sigh.  Anyways, without further adieu, here is my list for 2023 Summer Camps.  Thanks again to all that provided input or helped me with updates. 

Summer Camps for Children in Winnipeg – Day Camps

Gymboree Summer Camps (Linden Ridge)

For newborn to 5 years with day camps starting for children as young as 3 years old.  Registration now open with more details promised on the Website soon.  Website here:

GymKyds (Southdale)

Ages 3 and up but children must be potty trained and able to use the bathroom independently. A gymnastics-centered program with a variety of weekly themes including sports themes, farm themes and science themes (among others). Full day and half day programs available.  Registration opens March 1st. Website:

Rady JCC Summer Camps (Tuxedo)

Ages 3 to Teens. They offer over 40 different specialty camps with great variety including Amazing Race themes, animation camps, and many other specialized programs.  Early-Bird Registration for Members begins March 7.  General registration begins March 14. Pamphlet for 2023 Registrations can be found here: Website:

My Gym (St Vital)

Ages 3 to 12 years. The camps focus on fitness games, gymnastics (noncompetitive), arts and crafts.  Weekly themes and they advertise that no two camp days at My Gym are ever the same. Full days and half days are available.  Registration is now open.  Website:

Royal Dance Conservatory Day Camps (West Kildonan)

Ages 3-11 years. Offering lessons in dancing with various themes.  At time of production, the complete offerings were not yet available.  Registration open soon.  Website:

Engineering for Kids Summer Camps (Whyte Ridge)

Ages 4-14.  Operating out of Whyte Ridge Community Centre, this program aims to teach science, technology, engineering and math with a hands-on approach.  A variety of themes available including Lego robotics, medieval defence and pirate academy! Registration is now open.  Website:

Fort Whyte Alive (Oak Bluff)

Ages 4 – Grade 8. Heavy focus on nature including swimming programs for those in grades 1 and older. Registration for members of Fort Whyte begins February 28th.  Public registration begins March 2nd. Website:

YMCA Camps (Various Locations in Winnipeg)

Ages 4-12. Offers a variety of programming including swimming, music, dance, outside play, arts and crafts and more.  Registration opens ? Website:

Groove Academy Summer Mini Camps (Various Locations) 

Ages 4+. Kids learn and produce a create performance through the week that they display for friends and family.  There are daily arts and crafts.  Registration is now open.  Website:

Whitetail Sports Camps (Sturgeon Heights Community Centre)

Ages 4-11. Advertises a coaching program to teach the fundamentals of physical activity and education including Yoga, Dance, T-Ball, Kickball and Soccer.  Registration opens March 4th.  Website:

University of Manitoba – Mini U (Fort Richmond)

Ages 5-16.  A variety of programs including sports programming such as soccer, basketball, cheerleading, dodgeball, track and field, hockey, gymnastics.  They also have other programs such as learning about animals, crafting, dinosaur discovery, science alliance. Junior Bison Sports Camps available for children up to age 18 – more detail on that below.  Registration opens March 8th.

School of Rock (River Heights)

Ages 5-11 mostly (some older programs too). This camp offers music camps for those musicians with varying skill levels who want to learn (or already play) guitar, bass, keyboard, drums and vocals. They offer half-day options as well.  Registration already open.

WISE Kid-Netic Energy STEM Day Camps (Fort Richmond)

Kindergarten to Grade 12. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math – which is what the programming is based upon.  At time of production of this list, we had not heard back on their list of offerings for Summer of 2023 and their Website still showed the 2022 programming.

Discovery Day Camp (East Kildonan)

Kindergarten to Grade 7 (typical age ranges on programs 5-12). Part of Centerpoint Church. They have different themed weeks with programming that involves excursions on a 72-passenger bus including trips to go swimming!  Registration opens March 15th.  Website:

Aquatica Synchro Club (Various Locations)

Ages 5 to 19+.  Offers 3 different summer camps. Activities include: artistic swimming skills, games and crafts to explore our theme, creating and performing an artistic swimming routine, flexibility and strength training. For all skill levels starting with 5-year-olds who are new to the shallow end.  Registration is now open. Website:

Miracle Ranch Summer Camp (Springfield)

Ages 5 and up.  Offers beginner and experienced camps for those wanting to learn about horseback riding, horsemanship as well as horse care.  There are a variety of teaching components including in-class, on the ground training, as well as some opportunities to make crafts and explore the 40 acres of the ranch.  Registration is now open.  Website:

Beaver Creek Nature Day Camp (Charleswood)

Ages 6-12. A one to four-week educational summer camp nestled in the picturesque natural surroundings of beautiful Charleswood! With different nature themes each week, campers can enjoy a variety of activities, games, and outdoor exploration, creating unforgettable experiences and fostering a love for nature. Registration is now open. Website: 


Assiniboine Zoo, Zoo Camp (Tuxedo)

Ages 6 -12. Great opportunities for children to meet the animals and animal care professionals and also explore the Assiniboine Park and The Leaf. Registration opens February 28th. Website:

Dakota Community Centre Summer Camps (River Park South)

Ages 6-13.  Offering a variety of options including art classes to multi-sports to specialized hockey camps and clinics. Enrollment is now open.  Website:

Mad Science (Various Locations)

Ages 5 – 11. Offering different weekly themes with a focus on science discovery, outdoor games and physical activity.  Registration is now open. Website:

Manitoba Children’s Museum (The Forks)

Kindergarten to Grade 4 in upcoming school year. They have different weekly themes with indoor and outdoor activities including field trips.  Registration is now open.  Website:

Kid Camps at Winnipeg Humane Society.

Ages 6-13. These camps give children an opportunity to learn about animals and responsible pet ownership. There are crafts, games, and lots of fun.  Various weeks offered through summer 2023.  Registration opens March 31.  Website:

Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG) Art Camp for Kids (Downtown)

Ages 6-12. Camps with a focus on art-making, field trips, games and it ends with a camper-curated exhibition! Registration for summer camps is not yet open.  Check back to Website for updates.  Website:

The Beach Volleyball Centre Summer Camp (East St Paul)

Ages 7-12.  A variety of activities including archery tag, giant connect four, Giant Jenga, among other sports.  Registration is now open.  Website:

Code Ninjas (Bridgwater)

Ages 7-14 to learn about coding, game-building and robotics.  Their programming is designed for learning through the process of iteration, reflection and feedback. Registration is open now. Website: For registration.  For a list of Summer March Break Camps:

Red River College (Various Locations)

Ages 8-16 depending on the program. Current course offerings include Girls exploring trades and technology and Camp Canon focusing on photography techniques.  Some in-class but also online course offerings.  Registration for some programs open now.  Other course registrations to open May 8th.  Website:

Sagehill Stables (South Waverley)

Ages 8-16.  A camp for children wanting to learn about horses and riding. Programming includes horseback riding lessons, making crafts, and outdoor activities. Registration now open.  Website:

Assiniboine Zoo, Leaf Summer Camp (Tuxedo)

Ages 9 -12. This camp focuses on plants and they will learn all about different world cultures through plants, food and art. Registration opens February 28th. Website:

Winnipeg Conservatory of Music (Wolseley)

Ages 9 and up.  Offering three summer camps in July including  Fiddle Sessions for all skill levels, musical theatre camp and even Vocal Jazz Camp for Adults. Registration is now open.  Website:

Manitoba Paddling Association Summer Camp (Operating mostly out of Manitoba Canoe & Kayak Centre in Riverview)

Ages 9-14.  Learn the basics of canoeing and kayaking as well as Dragon Boating!  They also have programming that includes arts, crafts, games and special outings. Registration now open. Website:

Summer StudioWorks by Winnipeg Studio Theatre (Downtown)

Ages 10 and up. Teaches the triple threat technique of acting, dancing and signing.  At time of publication, registration for 2023 was not yet open.  Check back to the Website for updates.  Website:

University of Manitoba – Junior Bisons (Fort Richmond)

Ages 12-18.  These are high performance camps with offerings for a variety of sports including soccer, basketball and volleyball. Registration opens March 8th.  Website:

Additional summer camp programs are often offered through the City of Winnipeg’s Leisure Guide for great prices.  But be forewarned, that registration is competitive and often sold out within minutes.  For more information, visit:

Specialized (Sports) Camps:

The Rink – Edge Hockey Skating Camps (Gateway Recreation Centre in East Kildonan).

Ages 5 (born 2017+) to 14 (born up to 2010) with programming for U7, U9, U11, U13, and U15. Full and half day programming offered with a variety of on-ice sessions, boardroom/SIM skate sessions, skills sessions, dryland sessions and multi-sport activities. Registration now open.  Website:

Jets Hockey Development Camps (Various Locations)

Ages 5+.  A variety of camps for those looking to develop as a hockey player.  Registration now open.  Website:

Excessive Speed Hockey (Various Locations but mainly Gateway Community Centre and East End Arena)

Ages 7 and up (must be born 2015 and older).  Aims to develop the love of all things hockey.  They also have specialized Goalie training.  Registration is now open.  Website:

Zajac Hockey (Seven Oaks Arena – Garden City and Gateway Recreation Centre – East Kildonan)

Ages 8-14 and players will be grouped according to age and skill. More of a clinic-style organization with focuses on various skills.  No first time skaters – all players must have a minimum of 2 years of playing experience. Focuses on skills such as shooting, stick handling, passing and skating techniques. Advertises training the likes of Jonathan Toews! Registration is now open.  Website:

Sami Jo Small Hockey Camp (Gateway Recreation Centre, East Kildonan). 

Girls aged 7-17.  One week is being offered in Winnipeg this year from July 17-21.  For players beginner through to elite. Registration now open.  Website:

Sport Manitoba (West End)

Ages 8 – 11.  Offers a variety of activities with a goal of developing movement fundamentals, confidence, teamwork, and multi-sport skills.  Some sport showcases include flag football, badminton, basketball, badminton, fencing, soccer, table tennis, cricket and more.  Registration now open.  Website:

Canlan Sports Summer Camps (St James)

Ages 3 to 14. Offering heavy hockey programming but also multisport camps that introduce sports such as soccer, basketball, kickball, tennis, ball hockey, ultimate frisbee, broom ball and more. Registration for those ages 3-5 mostly involves some parental involvement such as the learn-to-skate programming.  Registration is now open.  Website:

Royal Soccer (Various Locations)

Ages 5-13.  Offers half day and full day programming with a focus on developing children’s love for soccer.  There are swimming options available as well but it will depend on location and age group.  Registration now open.  Website:

Prairie Badminton Summer Camp (St Boniface)

Ages 8-17. Offers full day programming with a goal of developing a greater understanding of Badminton.  Registration is now open.  Website:

Nike Basketball Camp by Four Point Basketball (Tuxedo)

Ages 10-16.  A physically challenging program offered just one week in July.  Players will focus on developing footwork, ball-handling, finishing in the paint and passing. Registration is now open.  Website:

Girls Play Football – Blue Bombers Camp (Fort Richmond)

Ages 9-13.  Teaching girls to try football through drills and skill-specific training challenges. The camp is free and there is a lottery to get in.  Also, it is just one day per week (Sundays).  Registration is now open.  Website:

Overnight or Sleep-Away Camps:

For those with older children, looking to send them for overnight experiences, here are additional options:

Camp Massad (Sandy Hook, Manitoba)

Ages 4 to 18. Focuses on cultural aspects of Judaism. You do not need to be Jewish nor do you need to speak Hebrew to attend. Activities range from court sports, to arts/crafts, drama, swimming, archery, and more! Registration is open now. Website:

Red Rock Bible Camp (Whiteshell, Manitoba)

Ages 4 to 18+. Christian-based camp with a goal of deepening your child’s relationship with God. Located on water and as a result has ample options for swimming, water sports, and more. Registration is open now. Website:

Camp Arnes (Arnes, MB)

Ages 8+ including some family camps.  This is an inter-denominational Christian camp and they do offer some day camps as well, however, you must provide your own transportation there for the day camps.  They have skills programs that involve mountain biking, gardening, baking, woodworking, ropes courses, swimming, kayaking, among others. Registration is open now.  Website:

B'Nai Brith AKA BB Camp (Kenora, ON)

Ages 6-17.  Located on beautiful Lake of the Woods, this camp is an inclusive sleep away Jewish Summer Camp.  Activities include various sports, water activities, climbing, dance, zip lines, archery among many others!  Registration is now open.  Website:

Pioneer Camp (Shoal Lake, MB)

Ages 6-21. Operated by Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship of Canada. The program takes place in Shoal Lake and includes a variety of activities including: canoeing, fishing, sailing, swimming, fort building, archery, arts and crafts, bible studies, campfires and hiking. Registration now open. Website:

Circle Square Ranch (Spruce Woods, MB)

Ages 6-17.  Also Operated by Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship of Canada. Christian-based faith offering a variety of activities with opportunities for horse specialty camps. Registration now open.

Winkler Bible Camp (Winkler, MB)

Ages 5 (Kindergarten) through to Adult. They do have day programs available as well – but transportation may not be available. They offer escape rooms, zip lines, archery, rock climbing, slingshot, swimming, petting zoos, and more. Registration opens March 5th.  Website:

Camp Stephens (Kenora, ON)

Ages 8+.  Also offered through YMCA-YWCA.  One-week to four-week camp options available.  Set on a lake with great outdoor activities.  Registration is open.  Website:

Did I capture them all?  Please be sure to email us: Jennifer@JenniferQueen, if you feel there is something that could be added to this list!

Best realtors in winnipeg manitoba


Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945


Minimalist Living: 5 Easy Steps to Get Started and Why You Should Make the Change!

In recent times, minimalism has gained popularity as a lifestyle choice. Practicing minimalism involves using only items that serve a specific purpose and living a simpler life. I have always aspired to adopt a minimalist lifestyle, but it has proven to be more challenging for me than I initially anticipated. Nonetheless, I am still committed to downsizing the excess clutter and achieving the goal of minimal living - eventually.

Whether it is clothes, books, shoes, kitchen gadgets, kid’s toys, or any other assortment of items, a lot of individuals lead cluttered lives, without even being aware of it. A lot of people can become overwhelmed, me included, with their possessions and overspending on unnecessary items. By creating a stable, sensible and achievable budget, you can effectively eliminate unnecessary items and potentially reduce stress and anxiety. There are various free apps to help you stay on top of your minimalist budget, or if you prefer a traditional approach, excel is still an excellent tool to use.

I have compiled some helpful tips and tricks that can help kickstart the journey towards minimalism, as well as highlight the benefits of this lifestyle.

Five Steps to Get Started Today!

  1. Reduce/eliminate: An essential aspect of minimalism is reducing the excess items that are not necessary, to simplify declutter (I find it most challenging to accomplish this particular step). Start by going room by room and begin distinguishing what serves a purpose in your life and what doesn't. Afterward, assess how you can eliminate items that don't contribute value to your life, and dispose of them accordingly. Easier said than done in my opinion.
  2. Invest in quality instead of quantity: Minimalism isn't about avoiding shopping altogether; it's about being purposeful with what you buy. When you require new items, such as running shoes or winter jackets, kitchen appliances/gadgets, choose high-quality pieces that will endure over time. While a larger initial cost may not be ideal, you'll likely save money in the future by reducing frequent purchases. This also helps with reducing waste/pollution.
  3. Everything needs a place: I will admit this is my favourite step and I do it often – organize! However, what makes it challenging is my husband is the opposite. He would prefer to have everything in one spot. Anyone else in this situation? So, after you have completed step one (reduce/eliminate), designate a specific spot for each item. Utilize storage containers and organizational tools to help store everything you need. If you can't find a suitable location for some of your extra items, it might be worth reconsidering whether you need to keep them. As your minimalist environment takes shape, take responsibility for putting away items once you’ve finished using them. I’m working on this step with my four-year-old, how do you think it’s going?
  4. Reusable items are key: As you begin to simplify your living space, contemplate which items you can repurpose. A few easy alterations: exchange disposable water bottles for a reusable bottle, use containers to store food instead of plastic bags or plastic wrap. Additionally, consider bringing your own reusable coffee cup with you, if you’re a frequent coffee drinker.
  5. One in, one out: The principle of "one in, one out" applies not only to clothing, toys, or kitchen gadgets but also to other possessions. Whenever you acquire a new item, let go of an older one. This approach is a helpful guideline to keep your belongings organized and your living space clutter-free. I really like this step however have yet to utilize it – #2023goals

There are vast benefits of minimal living but the ones that motivate me most:

  1. Less stress: This is a significant aspect for me personally. I dislike having clutter scattered around and prefer a neat and organized home. Living in a minimalist home can bring a significant reduction in stress levels. The freedom to move around and appreciate your living space can relieve a significant burden.
  2. Spend less, save more: Opting to collect only the essentials can lead to financial liberty. Reducing expenditure on unnecessary items will lower your financial expenses and boost your savings.
  3. Eco-friendly: the truth is that most people consume significantly more than what is necessary. This society is characterized by excess, where it’s common to have closets overflowing with unworn clothes and cabinets filled with single-use plastics. The idea of overconsumption does have an impact on the environment, like depletion of resources and increased pollution.

Best real estate agent in Winnipeg


Amy McDermid

Phone: (204) 470-5356


Service Agreements now MANDATORY in Manitoba!

Why are Realtors Asking you to Sign a Service Agreement in Manitoba?

For those looking to move in Manitoba, you might have noticed a few changes in the last couple of years should you have reached out to a Realtor for advice or questions. Some of the changes have been subtle – but some not as much. If your Realtor or potential Realtor has told you that they need you to sign an agreement, prior to providing you with advice or information on listings, there IS a reason for that.  It is simply this: They ask, because now they HAVE to!

What are the stipulations?

Effective January 1, 2022, the Real Estate Services Act came into effect in Manitoba. The most notable difference, in our opinion, is the requirement to have a Written Service Agreement before providing services to ANY client – Buyer or Seller. This must be a written agreement signed by all parties. These agreements have existed for some time, so you may have heard of them before, but only recently have they become mandated by the Manitoba Securities Commission. Some areas that are considered to be a service include:

  • Preparing market evaluations for Sellers
  • Sending listings information to Buyers
  • Preparing and presenting offers
  • Advising on appropriate terms on a contract
  • Advertising a property
  • Showing a property
  • Sharing sales history on properties
  • Providing staging suggestions
  • The list goes on – but you get it!

What do these changes look like?

In the past, we were required to sign listing contracts with Sellers. So, the changes there are more subtle. A Service Agreement should still be signed prior to reviewing our assessment of a Seller’s home – which is oftentimes prior to the signing of any listing contract.  This can make a Seller nervous should they be interviewing many Realtors for the sale.  What we usually will do to alleviate these concerns is sign a contract for only a 3-hour period.  After which, it lapses and they are free to choose whomever they want to represent them in their sale.  They are not bound to us.  However, if you do select us to sell your home, a minimum of a 60-day contract must then be signed for the sale (The MLS requires 60-day contracts in Manitoba – their rules, not ours!).

The most notable difference though is for Buyers. In the past, it wasn’t uncommon for a Buyer to call us, ask us to be setup on a search for their dream home.  We would usually discuss their home search goals, timelines, and advise on what was reasonable and start sending them some comps that we thought could work for them.  This is no longer possible unless we have a signed service agreement upfront.  Terrifying, isn’t it?  Committing to a Realtor without any real opportunity to get to know them seems nerve-wracking – and we agree.  It wouldn’t be our first choice of how to do business, but it is our required choice.  Ours and EVERY other Realtor in Manitoba.

Best realtors in Winnipeg ManitobaWhat it means to sign with our team?

So, what does this mean if you are signing an agreement with our team?  It’s simple!  It means:

  • Putting pen to paper to establish that you have authorized us to work on your behalf.
  • It means setting terms and timelines that YOU are comfortable with. 
  • It sets out terms for canceling the agreement
  • It adds clarity to the Realtor-Client relationship.
  • Our service agreement is exclusive – which means we represent you throughout your entire home-buying or home-selling process.
  • There is no cost to sign our Buyer Service Agreement.  Realtors are typically compensated by the Seller in the transaction, and as a result we sign all of our agreements at 0%!
  • For Sellers, there is no additional fee to sign this agreement beyond what agreed to within our MLS listing contract.

Other housekeeping items

If you are concerned about long contracts, fret not.  We do have an easy cancelation policy.  BUT we also understand that signing an agreement is still scary.  As a result, our team has instituted a quick trial period for those that want to “test out” our services.  The initial contract need only be signed for two weeks.  We like to call this period an orientation period. In this period, we typically:

  • Discuss an overview of the process
  • Put you in touch with the right professionals – such as mortgage brokers, home inspectors, etc.
  • Provide you with a copy of our Home Buyer Guide
  • Start sending you listings and sales statistics for your chosen areas
  • Essentially, get you setup for success!

If you are happy with us after this initial two-week trial, then we can look at signing a more long-term contract.  If you aren’t, consider the contract canceled and you are free to look for new representation!

Please be careful

If you are calling listing agents to go and tour their listings, they are not required to have a signed service agreement with you.  Some might enjoy the freedom this provides from signing a contractual agreement.  BUT keep in mind, it does come at a cost. The Realtor has already signed a service agreement – it just isn’t with you.  They have signed it with the Seller and that allows them to market and show the property on the Seller’s behalf.  What does that mean for you, the Buyer?  It means you are not properly represented and that anything you might say while on that tour could be used against you in future negotiations.  So please, be careful.  We truly believe that it is always in our clients’ best interest to have their own, individual representation.

Even though it is mandatory, we can understand that it is terrifying to sign a contract with someone before really having the opportunity to work with them.  If your fear is that you aren’t going to mesh well with your Realtor, it is important to have that honest discussion upfront.  Clear communication is truly essential, and sometimes it is best to have an opportunity to clarify and explain.

Also, keep in mind that a Realtor that agrees to represent you but does not have this documentation signed upfront is actually breaking the law.  Is that the type of representation you want on your side on one of the biggest transactions of your life?

Can you cancel at any time?

This will differ from Realtor to Realtor, as each Realtor has the right to set out their own terms in their Service Contract.  But for our team, the answer is YES!  Truth be told, if it turns out you don’t want to work with us, you simply need to let us know and we will happily cancel the contract. We would never want to force someone to work with us.   

Additional resources

For more information, here is a link to the Manitoba Real Estate Association’s write-up on these service agreements

Realtors in Winnipeg Manitoba#AgentJen

Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945


Tips to Selecting the Best Custom Home Builder

One of the best parts about being a realtor is helping customers see their dreams come true. For some customers it is walking into a new home and seeing their eyes light up at the sight of the spacious kitchen, or the dazzling ensuite. For other customers they dream of building a custom home. The opportunity to turn your dreams into a tangible reality with a local home builder is a unique experience that does not happen often in most people’s lives.

If this is you, and you are excited about turning the home in your dreams to the home of your dreams you may be wondering “how do I make sure I pick the best custom home builder available to me?”. Building your forever home is an exciting but daunting undertaking. It takes some hard work to find a really good home building partner, but that is well worth the effort when the reward is a dreamy custom home.

Step 1 – Get a List Together

Having toured numerous Winnipeg properties, you realize that there are none that check all your boxes. So, with the decision to build custom, you get to determine exactly what boxes need ticking. Spend time putting together the things that are important to you. Are you looking for a sustainable home to reduce your ongoing energy costs? Are you after healthier materials to reduce your allergies or the VOC’s in your home? What features do you want in your home? Are there going to be saunas? Steam rooms? Elevators for aging in place? Get your scorecard together, and then get ready to start searching.

There are a lot of decisions to make during the home building process, especially if you choose to build a custom home. You will get to choose everything from countertops and flooring to the colour of the door hinges on all your interior doors. You can pick the size, shape, colour and wood species of your baseboards and casing. If you have strong feelings, you can even weigh in on joist end insulation details! Ultimately when building truly custom you can choose as much or as little customization as you wish.

At this stage you should also start looking for interior designers that you will want to work with. Do not begin working with your interior designer until you have found your builder, but due to the volume of decisions and information tracking required for a new custom build, it is helpful to have a designer who can save you time and money by helping to guide your selections.

Step 2 – Gather a Large Pool of Contenders.

At this point it is a great idea to speak to a trusted real estate agent , friends, family members and neighbours about their experiences. They may suggest a great company they have experience with. This company should be top of list to check out. They may suggest there are some companies not worth talking to. There should also be a list for this. At this stage it is a good idea to cast a wide net, use your list of priorities and must-haves to inform your search terms.

While compiling this list make sure you are attentive to the professionalism and response times from the companies. It will be an indicator of how willing and comfortable they are helping you with your custom build. A smooth sales process and attentive listeners at sales meetings indicate they truly care about you and your priorities and will not try selling you stock plans to suit your specific needs.

Custom Built homes in winnipeg

Step 3 – Start Weeding!

When you get to this stage you will want to be quite picky about the ones that make it on to the next interview stage. You want to make sure you do proper research because interviewing and meeting with your top choice builders will take some time. At this stage we recommend asking some very specific questions to confirm they have the capacity or professionalism to deliver a great product with a fun relationship.

There are some good templates available, but the prime point of this exercise is to determine the builder’s confidence at building what you want built. You will want to ask about their previous experience with your list of wants and must-haves, and if they meet basic professional requirements (insurance, what size deposit is required, where do they work, are there hidden fees, what style is their contract)

This step should give you a good idea if you are talking to a custom home builder, or a track builder who wants to sell a pre-designed home. You will need to decide how custom your needs are. If you are after an economical new home where you can choose the floor type and paint colours you may not need a fully custom design-build firm that starts drawing your home from scratch. If you are looking for a unique in-fill home that matches the lot and capitalizes on passive solar heating techniques, you will want to have a fully custom builder.

Some custom builders will have in-house design teams, and others will work with architects they recommend. Both options are good, but you will want to make sure that the design and building components collaborate early and often. With modern technology some design-build firms will provide 3d photo renderings, others will provide full texture elevations, and some will even provide a full VR experience where you can literally walk through the home before you apply for permits.

Step 4 – Start the Interviews

The goal of the process to this point is to find three or four well suited home builders to increase the chances of you finding an excellent match that can make the journey fun and rewarding. With the right partner, you will find yourself guided through a fun and rewarding process. The point of the interviews in step 4 is to figure out “do we get along” and narrow your list of three or four down to one builder to rule them all.  

Up to this point you likely have been talking to just the sales team, but now is your chance to ask to meet more of the team. If you can chat with a production member and accounting member as well as sales team that is great. They will be taking care of you during the process, so it is good to know if you’ll be able to get along. Again, it will be a 1–3-year commitment, so making sure you enjoy interacting with your builder will go a long way!

In the interview phase you will want to ask them about some projects that are like yours and ask how those projects went. What were the challenges, what went well? After you have heard from your prospective builder it would be good to get references from the customer on that project as well as a couple others to ask about their experience with the builder.

You will notice that pricing has been absent from the process to this point. The reason we recommend waiting to talk pricing till the end is that pricing is tough to compare builders on. Some builders price basic across the board, and others will include energy efficient features (like ICF instead of conventional concrete), or upgraded finishes based on your wants list. So square foot pricing doesn’t really work because each builder will assume different specs.

Once you have your list at three or four builders you can now engage in more in-depth pricing exercises. At this point you will want to make sure you have preliminary house plans together with an idea of the finishes you want. When you have just a couple builders pricing you can afford to spend more time with each one to confirm they are pricing the same things. Some builders will give rock bottom allowances regardless of the finish level you request, so make sure you confirm that they are indeed pricing what you asked for.

Luxury Real estate builders in winnipeg

Step 5 – Contract Review

Once you have made it through the steps and have narrowed your list down to one solid option, it is time to request the contract and do a formal review of it. It is well worth having your lawyer provide their opinion on the contract, and ensure it is fair to both parties. Some builders will not be flexible on the contract terms and others will be open to revising some terms, though they will likely ask you to pay for their legal fees on having their lawyer review.

The contract is an important thing to make sure you understand and agree with. This will lay out the ground rules for how the project will go and how each party should conduct themselves in regard to timelines, payments, dispute resolution and so on. No matter the conversations about how a company conducts itself the contract will be decisive in what you can expect to be the minimum treatment of your relationship.

Now with a good build, the contract never comes out again after having signed it and the work has commenced. With the homework you have done until this point in selecting your builder, it is likely this will be your experience. However, if things go rough, and either party needs to enforce the contract it is good to be fully aware of what you can expect.

So, there you have it. A guide to follow in anticipation of taking a large, exciting and rewarding step. When you find the right builder, and you can work openly and honestly with each other the process of building a home will become fun and edifying. If you need help finding a lot in a desirable in-fill community, or in a new sub-development, reach out to the Queen team.

dueck builders luxury real estateGuest post from Dueck Builders

Josh Friesen

(204) 806-0616


What to do in Winnipeg in the Winter with local Realtor, Sam Scribilo!

Winnipeg winters often get a bad reputation. Yes, it is cold! But because of our extreme cold temperatures, there are a lot of experiences to get out and enjoy that are unique to our cold climate.

I really enjoy Winnipeg winters (maybe this has something to do with me pretty much being raised in an ice rink) But I promise there is no reason to stay indoors and hibernate this Winter! There are so many things to do here in Winnipeg over the winter and we should consider ourselves lucky as some of them are very unique and cannot be experienced anywhere else! Here is a list of some of my favorite outdoor winter activities offered here in Winnipeg.

Skating on The Nestaweya River Trail

This is one of my favorite Winnipeg winter activities, I find that when the river trail opens up each year I finally dust off my figure skates and enjoy a few outdoor skating sessions. You can access the river trail from The Forks, but there are also many access points along the trail. Each year you will find warming huts along the trail which are the product of an Arts and Architecture competition. – This year there were over 122 submissions from over 30 countries. Six new warming hut designs will join old favorites along the river this year. If Ice skating is not your thing don’t worry you can also enjoy the trail by foot, cross country skis, or even big tire bikes! Equipment can be rented at The Forks.

Celebrate “Joie de Vivre” at Festival de Voyager

What to do in the Winter in WinnipegFestival de voyager is the largest winter festival in western Canada and once a year Saint Boniface (Winnipeg’s French quarter) is transformed into a “winter paradise”. Voyageur, Metis, and first nations histories are brought back to life through historical interpretation as well as throughout the attractions within voyageur park. The festival de voyager has something for all ages! You will find traditional cuisine, an ice bar, snow sculptures, live entertainment as well as recreational and educational activities for kids.

Check out festival de voyager this winter between February 17th- February 26th 2023

Explore Fort Whyte Alive

Fort Whyte Alive is a nature center and a wildlife refuge that aims to connect individuals to nature. They offer over 640 acres of protected green space and daily activities and programs. In the winter you can hit the trails via snow shoes, skis, or big tire bikes. You can also try your hand at ice fishing! Fort Whyte alive is home to the “Richardson Rrunn” toboggan slide which sends tobogganers onto the frozen lake. If you are looking to try a new winter activity check out fort Whyte Alive’s winter programming. They rent equipment and encourage embracing the cold weather to enjoy sparkling snow and crisp winter air.

Challenge the Snow Maze at Amaze in Corn

Head out to A Maze in Corn to challenge the largest snowy maze. A Maze in Corn is home to The Guinness Book of World Record's Largest Snow Maze! You will also find snow carvings and buildings, a slide down Snow Mountain, a giant luge run, bonfires to keep warm, and a variety of snow games. After the fun, you can warm up with a cup of hot chocolate, or an adult drink at The Snow Bar. The snow maze usually opens in January weather/ snow depending

Enjoy the festive Zoo lights at Assiniboine Zoo

Take in the light spectacular “Zoo Lights” this holiday season. During the holiday season, Assiniboine zoo creates a stunning winter wonderland for the whole family to enjoy. Not only are there a ton of light displays, but you can also mingle and enjoy a drink at the Ice Bar, try some tasty treats, and listen to live music and entertainment.

This year Zoo lights runs from Dec. 1st 2022- Jan. 8th 2023

Relax at Thermea by Nordik Spa-Nature

So I know, this one is open all year round but my favorite time to enjoy this Scandinavian Nordic spa is during the winter months. Spend the afternoon relaxing in a winter wonderland at Winnipeg’s premier outdoor spa. The facility includes steam rooms, Finnish saunas, relaxation chambers, heated hammocks, numerous fire pits, and much more.

This is not an extensive list by any means as “Winterpeg” truly does have so much to offer throughout the winter season. So try to get out and enjoy some fresh crisp air this Winter season, you won’t regret it!

Top real estate agent in winnipeg#AgentSam

Samantha Scribilo

Tel: (204) 960-8851


The Return of the Time Clause

I couldn’t remember the last time I had dealt with a time clause on an offer, that is until the last home I sold. Time clauses had almost gone extinct it seemed, but alas, here we are.

Let me start off by giving a quick explanation about what a time clause is. A time clause or a “48 hour” clause, as a lot of us refer to it as, is used when an offer is conditional, and the seller would like to continue to offer their home for sale while the buyer is working on fulfilling those conditions. If another offer comes in and is unconditional during the time where the buyer is trying to satisfy their conditions, the sellers will give the first buyer a 48-hour notice (or whatever time period was agreed upon) to remove or fulfill all their conditions or the property will go to the new buyer.

So, when would a time clause be used? Time clauses are used primarily when the buyer is asking for an extended period to fulfill the conditions on an offer. The most common use for a time clause is when the offer is subject to the sale of the buyer’s home but can technically be put in place for any condition on an offer.

Who benefits from the time clause? Time clauses are for the benefit of the seller; therefore, it is the responsibility of the seller’s agent to make sure this clause is inserted into the offer. Sellers would be taking quite a risk by accepting an offer subject to the sale of the buyer’s home without a time clause included. If that was the case and another qualified buyer came along with an offer, the seller would not be able to entertain that offer during the period that the first offer remained conditional. Another benefit of the time clause is that it can be used as a sort of leverage to try and get a stronger offer from a second buye, but a word of advice:  It is VERY important that the seller is happy with the terms set out in the first offer as even if they do receive a second offer that is much better, the first buyer may surprise you and waive their conditions and you would then be obligated to go with that first offer. 

Is there any risk for the buyer? Slight. It all depends on their situation and if they have a back up plan in place if the notice of another offer is delivered. If the 48 hours (or whatever time agreed upon) starts and the buyer has not yet sold their home, they have two options:

Waive all conditions: In this case the home would go to the first buyer. If the buyer must sell their home to be approved for a mortgage on the new home, this option is a risk.  If they don’t end up selling, they would be risking their deposit as well as any other legal costs associated with the non-fulfillment of the offer to purchase as they would not be able to close on possession.

Mutual cancellation of the offer to purchase: In this case the first buyer would opt to back out of their offer and allow the second offer to purchase to be accepted. The firs buyer’s deposit would be returned to them in full and the home would go to the second buyer. If the buyer’s home was already on the market, the buyer would then need to decide if they are going to continue offering their home for sale. This could result in the buyer’s home selling without them having another home to move into. On the other hand, if they decide to remove their home from the market, there may be some fees associated with the removal of the property.

As I had mentioned before, time clauses were a thing rarely seen in the past few years. This was because in a competitive market, most homes were selling unconditional or with very short condition periods therefore there was no need for these time clauses. Writing an offer subject to the sale of your home was a sure way to not have your offer accepted! Now, with our market balancing out, buyers can write in a few more conditions therefore we can expect to see the time clause make its appearance once again.

Local Realtors in Winnipeg Manitoba#AgentAshton

Ashton Augert

Phone: (204) 781-1767


Reflections on the Current Real Estate Market in Winnipeg, Manitoba

So, the covid pandemic has come and gone, or at least the pandemic portion of it. If you have been shopping for a house in the last year then you may have noticed some changes. Here in Winnipeg, we are back to having options to look at on the market and less competition than you were up against in 2020/2021. The start of 2022 looked as though it would be heading in the same direction, that is until the Bank of Canada announced increases to the interest rates. As it typically does, this increase in interest rates has required purchasers to take a second look at their approval rates for purchases and even the budgets they are comfortable working with. A similar situation occurred in 2018 when the bank of Canada increased the overnight rate. Purchasers slowed down on their search, choose more affordable options and there was a general slow of the market.

Now flash back to the start of 2022, everything looked as though it would continue in the same direction as 2021/2022, that is until the rates began to change in March with the start of the changes to the overnight rate. This allowed people who still had a recent pre-approval to receive lower interest rates through many lenders. Now the overnight rate has risen multiple times in 2022.  Currently at 3.75% thanks to another 50 basis points on October 26th, making this the sixth consecutive increase from where we started the year at 0.25%.  That is the highest it has been since 2008! As someone who actually purchased a home in 2008 I honestly don’t remember being blown away with the rates at the time. I think that the past two years of the Bank of Canada trying to stimulate the economy has left purchasers with a bad taste in their mouths.

If there is one thing to be thankful for as a buyer in the current market it is the ability to choose through options and being able to fully vet a house before purchasing.

During the pandemic homes were typically on the market between 7-10 days. At the end of which an offer date saw multiple groups competing for a house, increasing the prices significantly.  Now with the rate increases we are seeing less and less of that situation. While not gone completely, and it has been around at least over the last decade on certain houses, the odds of getting into a “bidding war” has decreased significantly. This allows buyers to spend time searching through multiple house options and taking a bit more time in figuring out what works for them. In regards to offers this market has also allowed for more due diligence when vetting a property. Offers with longer condition times and home inspection conditions are more common which was much more difficult when competing against other offers.

As a buyer this gives you the opportunity to potentially have multiple viewings on a home, find out what may be needed for work required if you do a home inspection and generally get a better “deal” on a home purchase.

That brings me to purchase prices, however. A lot of conversations I have had with clients and potential clients is the conversation of low offers on properties. While the given market does allow for more negotiation with regards to price you have to remember that values increased dramatically over the past few years. A correction is likely going to happen but you should still be looking at properties within a $5000-10000 amount above your comfort zone.  That means if you are pre-approved for $300K then at most look for a house at $310K, but again that depends on other factors as well. How long has the home been on the market? Has there been a recent price drop?

Some things that haven’t changed though are the steps you should take as a buyer.

If you feel you are ready to start your home search then the first thing you need to do is get a pre-approval from a lender. Even if you have an idea of what you want to spend on a home a pre-approval will dig into your financials and let you know EXACTLY what you can afford to spend. That doesn’t mean you will want to spend that amount either, so once you know what your budget is then move on to step 2. Reach out to a real estate agent. Due to our new regulations governing realtors you will need to have a buyer’s service agreement in place for an agent to help you view homes, advise you on the market and prices and also help you offer on a home. If you want more info on buyers or sellers service agreements feel free to reach out. Once you have a pre-approval and a service agreement with a realtor you are ready to view homes and start your shopping.

As with any change in the market it is best to get advice from the people who do this everyday. My team and I are always happy to talk real estate and are always open to teaching prospective buyers about the market, house information in Winnipeg and how to get going on the plan for your new home.

Top real estate agents in Winnipeg, Manitoba#AgentLogan

Logan Queen

Tel: (204) 226-1261


Five Fall Maintenance Tips

With Fall here, it is important to start thinking about ways to protect your home from the fall and winter elements. Here are 5 fall maintenance tips that will allow you to enjoy homeownership and help you protect your investment!

  1. Service your furnace: I know right now the weather is beautiful – it’s sunny and the ideal fall weather BUT the cold is coming whether we are ready or not. It’s a good idea to have your furnace inspected once a year to make sure it is in good working order. We have all heard the horror stories of someone’s furnace breaking down in the middle of January, on the coldest day of the year (it’s happened to me). Have it serviced before it gets to that point and when prices are more reasonable - fall is a great time!
  2. Clean the gutters (eavestroughs): Get your ladder out and a pair of waterproof gloves because it might get messy (but oh so satisfying!). Climb that ladder and start cleaning out your gutters (try and use the buddy system for safety). This is important to get done before it starts to freeze because having clogged eaves can cause expensive issues down the road. Even if you have gutter guards, it is still important to make sure the eaves or the guards are clear of debris.
  3. Caulking: Important things to have on hand when talking home ownership; window and door caulking, expanding spray foam and clear sealant. This time of year, is perfect to do a thorough walk around of your house. During this walk make sure you are checking for things like dried out caulking, pipes or wiring entering the foundation or siding, rotting wood, etc. You want to make sure everything has a tight seal and consider fixing or replacing anything that looks like water, insects or rodents may be able to infiltrate.
  4. Check for Drafts: Fall is a great time to check and fix your windows and doors for the dreaded winter draft – definitely beats doing it in December. Grab a lighter on a windy day (any day in Winnipeg) and while inside your home move it slowly around a window. If the flame is moving, there is likely a draft. You can also do this with exterior doors! Something I have noticed in my 1962 built home, is a draft through the light sockets/plugs, check yours while you are at it. There are actually products to help insulate these sockets and plugs! Ask me about them and I can share where to get them.
  5. Draining (or bleeding) hoses and exterior taps: This is VERY important to do before the temperature drops below zero. This will prevent ice damaging inside the taps and potential flooding inside your house. Draining your exterior hoses will also prevent cracking and save you money in the spring.

Now, please excuse me, I have to get outside and get started on some of these! I have cleaned my gutters and done a walk around for tight seals. However, there is still more to do to protect my home this season!

Thanks for reading,

Great realtors in Winnipeg Manitoba#AgentAmy

Amy McDermid

Phone: (204) 470-5356


5 Downsizing Tips for Entrepreneurial Seniors

Retirement marks a new chapter in your life, and you might be ready to make some big changes as you leave the workforce behind. For instance, you may want to downsize your home to simplify your life - but you may also be curious about exploring new ventures, like starting a business. Seniors often enjoy running home-based businesses because they require minimal overhead, and you can manage your operations even with mobility issues. By working with The Jennifer Queen Team, you can find a smaller, cozy home that still has plenty of room to run a part-time business! Here’s how to handle downsizing and launching a business simultaneously.

Declutter Your Home

Before moving into a property with less square footage, you’ll need to sort through your belongings and get rid of anything you don’t truly need. You can separate items into different categories and designate what you want to keep, what you can sell, what you can donate to charity, sentimental items to give to family, and broken items that need to be thrown away.

Choose the Right Property

You’ve tackled the decluttering process, and now, you’re ready to start searching for the home where you’ll spend your retirement. This is a big decision, so make sure to work with a great real estate agent who understands your preferences as a retiree. Even though you’re on the lookout for a smaller home, make sure that your new property has space for a home office and business supply storage.

Decide on a Business Idea

You’ve found the perfect home - and now, you’re eager to get your business up and running! But which business model is right for you? You’ll want to choose something you’re truly passionate about but won’t take up as much time as a full-time job. After all, you do want to relax and enjoy your retirement! Profitable Venture recommends becoming a tutor, selling homemade baked goods, pet sitting, babysitting, or teaching people skills that you learned during your career.

Use Helpful Software

Today, you don’t need to keep track of all of your business details with pen and paper. When it comes to managing your company’s finances, you can rely on invoicing and accounting software instead. This is a smart choice even for small businesses!

With the best invoicing software, you’ll be able to maintain accuracy in your financial reporting and speed up the payment process. By choosing software that enables customers to pay online just by clicking on the invoice, you’ll be able to collect payments in a timely manner. Ideally, you’ll want to invest in a system that also alerts you when customers open and pay invoices and allows you to schedule recurring invoices for repeat customers.

Design Your Home Office

In order to run your business effectively, you’ll need a comfortable space to work. You can have a lot of fun designing your home office and giving this workspace a personal touch! Room Sketcher recommends investing in a supportive chair, picking out a desk with plenty of space for your computer and other items you’ll need throughout the day, adding shelving, a file cabinet, or cupboards for storage, using open-top floor lamps to enhance your lighting, and utilizing a cord tamer to get any stray wires and cords out of your way. You may want to place some family photos on your desk or walls for decor!

By downsizing and starting a business in retirement, you can lower your cost of living while making a little extra income. This is a great way to boost your quality of life in your golden years. With these tips, you’ll be ready to thrive as a senior entrepreneur!

Are you in the market for a smaller home? Turn to The Jennifer Queen Team to get the keys to your dream house! Call us today at 204-797-7945 to connect with an agent.

Photo via Pexels

Written by: Claire Wentz


What is HAPPENING in the Winnipeg Real Estate Market?

I don’t feel like I need to add any more fuel to the housing affordability debate, so rest assured – I will stay away from that on this blog post!

But let’s face it – the 2022 Winnipeg real estate market has been one heck of a roller coaster.  I would best describe it as volatile – as it has changed rapidly throughout the year with the first two quarters starting as strong Seller’s market, and the third quarter now showing more semblance of a balanced or perhaps even some might liken it, incorrectly so, to a Buyer’s market.

Here’s the thing: the market is ACTUALLY still considered a Seller’s market.  It just doesn’t feel like it to those that have witnessed the last several months of real estate craziness.  Bidding wars are still happening, we are typically seeing less than 6 months of inventory, and the sale prices are still relatively close to the list price.  All of these are market indicators of a Seller’s market.  However, if you were listening to stories from early in 2022, you will have heard of 20 or more offers on some homes with many selling for $100,000 over list price.  So, when a home sells in under 20 days for 1-2% below list price, it doesn’t sound as exciting for our Sellers. The market has certainly changed – and it was a good time while it lasted – for the Sellers.

I personally, will always prefer a balanced market. I like when there is logic and rationale behind Buyer behaviour.  I also like to see homes being listed near fair market value.  There is nothing that drives me more nuts than underpricing to try and drive a bidding war, or overpricing and just assuming it will sell anyways because the market is “hot”. Balance is where there are many options out there for Buyers to compare, and reasoning wins out.  Balance is where Agents that REALLY know their market tend to excel. 

Let’s face it – the last two years have been anything but typical.  We all thought when COVID set in, that houses would stop selling.  Who wants to buy a house in a pandemic, right?  I’ll tell you who: Savvy buyers who realize the opportunity presented when mortgage rates are at all-time lows.  I think we seriously underestimated just the power of low interest rates – even in the face of a pandemic.  However now, we are seeing that same responsiveness to interest rates now that they are increasing.

Next week, we know that the Bank of Canada will be making one more announcement about their key lending rate.  Most speculation, and I agree, is that rates will likely go up by 0.5-0.75%. I would agree with that and I wouldn’t be shocked if they went on the more aggressive end of the spectrum, as inflation is still out of control. Given the previous increases this year, the combined increase from January 2022 until now, we have seen the Overnight Rate increase by 2.25% in 8 short months.  With next week’s announcement, we will likely be sitting at close to 3% since the start of the year. This might not sound like a lot, but when put in perspective for home buyers, we have to look at the impact it has on their mortgage affordability. The average sale price in Winnipeg as of the July report was right around $400,000. With a 5% down payment and good credit, a buyer would have likely had monthly mortgage payments of just under $1800.  However, with current rates we are talking about adding $400 - $500 to that monthly payment.  This has a huge impact on what Buyers can afford, and will of course have a downward impact on just what they are willing to pay.

Interesting enough, Winnipeg is reporting that its’ actual inventory is down 23% from it’s 10-year average, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association. At the end of the day, this is a supply and demand issue that we are facing in our more immediate future. With net positive migration planned again for 2022 and 2023, overtime we might continue to see more of these boom cycles.  In fact, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, CMHC, concluded that Canada needs to build around 3.5 million new homes by 2030 to tackle the affordability issues that many Canadians are seeing.

Real estate statistics winnipeg manitoba 

So how many homes do you think we are building in Canada per year right now?  The stats are in, and we are averaging between 200,000 – 300,000 new doors per year. A serious deficiency based on the projected required housing moving forward. This is a Canada-wide problem, not just a Winnipeg-based problem.  But in my opinion, what is being done to manage the housing shortage, by increasing interest rates is ultimately not the solution. Until our housing starts start matching the needs of our net migration in Winnipeg and in Canada, we are going to continue to see these boom cycles over and over again.

But mark my words, these increases in interest rates will put more strain on the rental markets – and as we start to see those rents climb and interest rates stabilize, we will again see a resurgence in the market.  Interest rates are a Band-Aid fix – but not a long-term solution.  I personally think that if you plan to buy and hold Real Estate that it is still the most solid investment you can make.  And those that feel the market is overheated now, will be kicking themselves for not buying now, 10 years from now.

It is also worth mentioning, that Winnipeg is one of the most stable real estate markets in all of Canada.  In years where other markets were seeing massive boom and bust cycles, our values rose slowly but steadily.  It does make us a boring market to report on – and perhaps that is why so little is reported on about the Winnipeg Real Estate Market – but I like it.  Slow and steady wins the race! I read a statistic that in the last 50 years, there have only been 3 years in which the average sales price declined – but it was followed by a rebound that far surpassed the decline in the following year.  Those years of decline were in years of high interest rates – and we are anticipating to see a slight decline in Q4 and into 2023 largely due to the aggressive interest rate hikes.  However, mark my words on two things: 1. As the market adjusts when interest rates stabilize, we will start to see more buyer confidence and homes starting to trade as they did at those 2019 rates, and; 2. Winnipeg will fare far better than most markets in Canada.  We are hearing predictions from other Provinces that their property values will decline close to 25%.  I would anticipate declines, but nowhere near that.  I would be surprised if we are even into the double digits. 

So there.  I said it. I put my predictions in writing.  I might cringe in a year or so reading this, but if history is the best indicator of the future, I think Winnipeg will come out of this relatively unscathed.

Agree?  Disagree?  Let me know!  I would love to hear your opinion!

Want more advice in this regard?  Whether or not it is a good time to buy or to sell?  Feel free to reach out. Every situation is specific, and we are happy to take a consultation and provide you with honest advice as to what your best options are!

Top selling realtor in Winnipeg Manitoba#AgentJen

Jennifer Queen

Phone: (204) 797-7945


The Lowdown on Interest Rates

Unless you have been living under a rock, I’m sure you’ve heard how “crazy” the real estate market has been over the last few years. We have been seeing homes selling for 100’s of thousands over asking, with no conditions and that was the norm.  Home inspection? Forget it. Financing condition? Good luck. Condition to sell your current home? Now I’m laughing, but lately you might be starting to hear a different tune.

Over the past few months we have started to see a shift in the market to a more balanced market. There are still homes selling over list, but we are starting to see a slow in the demand and buyer’s are starting to be a little more cautious with how they are spending their money. So, what changed? There are many factors that drove the highly competitive “sellers’ market” over the past few years, but in my opinion interest rates were the true driving force. The bank of Canada has been raising rates slowly over the past few months and we are now really starting to see its impact. So, let’s take a closer look into what interest rates are and how they affect the real estate market.

What is an interest rate?

An interest rate is the amount of money your lender (bank, credit union etc) will charge you for borrowing money from them. This is usually calculated annually as a percentage of the loan outstanding. For example: If you bought a house for $500,000.00 and put down 20%, you would need to borrow $400,000.00 from the bank. On this $400,000.00 they are offering you an interest rate of 3.6%; that means that you would be paying $14,400.00 (400,000 x 0.036) in interest for that first year to borrow 400K. The interest paid goes down slightly each year as you pay down your principal amount, but your payments will stay the same for the entire term that you agreed to. This results in a SLIGHT increase in your monthly payment going towards the principal amount of your mortgage and less interest paid each year. (once again emphasizing SLIGHT).

Why do interest rates affect the market?

Simply put, when interest rates are low, buyers have more buying power. What that means is that with a lower rate, buyers can afford a higher monthly payment as they are paying less interest on the amount they are borrowing.

Now for some of the first time home buyers out there, you might be wondering why these rates would have such an impact on the market, but just a 1% increase could mean 100’s of dollars more for you per month depending on how much you are borrowing.

Let’s use the same example as before:

Purchase Price: 500k with a 20% down payment
Amount Borrowing: 400K

Interest rate of 1.6% - $6,400.00/year or $533/month in interest for the first year or $29,272.00 for the 5 year term (this is the rate a lot of banks were offering during the pandemic for a 5 year fixed term)

Interest rate of 3.6% - $14,400.00/year or $1200/month in interest for the first year or $66,844.00 for the 5 year term (this was the average rate prior to the pandemic for a  5 year fixed term)

Interest rate of 5.24% - $20,960/year or $1746/month in interest for the first year or $98.233.00 for the 5 year term (this is the current rate most banks are offering for a  5 year fixed term)

**(remember this is only the interest, your monthly payment would also have the principal amount on it and that amount depends on your amortization period which is a topic for another day!)

As you can see, that is a difference of almost $69,000.00 over a 5 year term in interest paid on a loan of 400K, which has a huge impact on the affordability of a lot of buyers! This might be a shock to some of you and I will use this as a reminder to those of you who haven’t touched base with their lender in the past few months, PLEASE check in with your mortgage broker, your affordability may have changed!

To sum it up, low interest rates give buyer’s more flexibility and a larger range in what they can afford which is very appealing to buyers as it is costing them less money to borrow money. 

When this happens, there is usually a huge influx in demand for homes resulting in homes selling for a lot more money. When interest rates are high, the opposite happens, and that same monthly payment gets you a home in a much lower price range. When this happens, house prices tend to decrease to reflect the buying power of the buyers in that current market. 

Best realtor in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada


Ashton Augert

Phone: (204) 781-1767


Ready to Write an Offer?

As Realtors, it’s our job to support our buyer clients throughout the whole home buying process. When you find a home that you love we want to ensure you feel confident and prepared to write an offer.  That’s why when we first start working with buyers our team makes sure to educate our clients on the offering process that way there are not any surprises when you find that perfect home you want to write on. The more prepared you are and the more knowledge you have make writing an offer on a home a lot less overwhelming.

To make the process of writing an offer on a home seamless, here are a few items to think about before sitting down with your Realtor to complete the offer to purchase contract.

1. Understand an offer to purchase once accepted is a binding contract. 

The first time we write an offer, it will typically take upwards of an hour to explain all of the “fine print”. We want to make sure your feel educated and fully understand what you are committing to. The offer to purchase contract will outline the terms of your offer.

2. Prepare documentation you will need to write an offer.To write an offer be prepared to present the following: 

  • A form of government issued photo identification
  • A deposit cheque made out the listing brokerage- note these funds will come out of your account within 24 hours of acceptance
  •  A mortgage pre-approval letter (if applicable).

3. Get in touch with your bank or mortgage broker and ask how long it will take for them to process your financing. 

If you are writing a financing condition into your offer to purchase, we need to include an exact date and time by which you will satisfy your financing condition. Therefore, before writing an offer we suggest to call your mortgage provider and find out how fast they can process the mortgage.


4. Things to Think About in Advance:

If you have any questions in regard to the following do not stress. Your Realtor is here to help.

The “numbers”

How much money I am willing to pay for the home?

Deposit amount/ Down Payment amount

Do you want to include any terms or conditions?

Are you using mortgage financing and including a financing condition ?

Are you planning to insert a home inspection condition?

Are you planning to insert any other conditions (ask your realtor for a list of common conditions included in an offer)

Possession date

Often the seller will indicate an ideal possession date. However it is up to the buyer. So think about when you would want to take possession of your new home. (note: the average time for possession is between 30-60 days)


Again our team is here to support and educate you through the entire process of purchasing a home but when you have a general understanding of what is required to write an offer to purchase, and have all the documentation required prepared in advance it helps make the process seamless and stress free.

 Top rated real estate agent in winnipeg, manitoba


Samantha Scribilo

Tel: (204) 960-8851

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