Thursday, March 24, 2011

Buying Chilliwack Farmland, Acreage and Smallholdings


I had an inquiry this past week from a couple looking to purchase some farmland in my Chilliwack- Agassiz part of the Fraser Valley.   It got me to thinking, what does a Buyer need to know about buying farmland?  How can I help these people best organize their thoughts about this important farm real estate acquisition?  I soon realized that there were a lot of considerations that needed to be made.  This first part of a series on making a smart agricultural move looks at the Chilliwack, District of Kent/Agassiz farm culture and community environment.  This is BIG picture stuff which might help you answer the question is this the right community for my farm family.

Haying Time © Stephen Mullock


Community. 
You need to ask what the underlying philosophy about agriculture in the area is.  All too frequently, I read in provincial newspapers that the Agricultural Land Reserve in the Fraser Valley should be eliminated to free up land on which to provide cheaper housing.  This is not a widely held view but does put into perceptive some of pressures the Fraser Valley Chilliwack Agassiz farmland real estate faces.  Both the City of Chilliwack and the District of Kent/Agassiz have working documents very supportive of farms in the area.  These make for interesting reading and can be found at:


In recent years, there has been an effort to bring the public out to the farm in a program known as the Circle Farm Tour and introduce them to the products and artisans of this area.  Guides are available online and the tours are great way to get introduced to the rich farm life of the Fraser Valley & Chilliwack Agassiz area.



Organizations such as 4-H provide an important role for farm families both in advancing husbandry and friendship.  Being a 4-H member is fun, I can speak from my own personal experiences,and there are a number of terrific clubs in the Fraser Valley Chilliwack - Agassiz area to choose from.  Good for children and youth 6 to 21 years of age.



The Chilliwack-Agassiz is dotted with small neighbourhoods: Rosedale, Yarrow, Greendale, Sardis, Fairfield Island and Harrison Mills to mention a few all with friendly people, unique community values and amenities.  You need to choose the place that best suits your family's needs.  I wish you the best of luck.

To find Houses with Acreage (1 acre or more) Click Here then select the community of your choice in the upper box called "Area AWP", and in the following "Type of Dwelling" box the words "House with Acreage".

Stephen Mullock RI is an award winning full-time real estate agent with 30 years of experience and hundreds of sales. Thinking of buying or selling real estate in the Fraser Cheam communities of Chilliwack, Agassiz or Harrison Hot Springs? Contact Steve (click here) for experience, local knowledge and friendly service you’ll be happy you did.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Todd Richard - Country Star in the Making

©Stephen Mullock
Country Stars aren't born, they, like the rural landscapes they so often come from, are the result of inspiration, a lot of work and the guts to hang in there.  I met one, Todd Richard, T/R, last month at the Oasis Coffee Shop in Agassiz, B.C. before his trip to Nashville to record his first country music album.

I didn't recognize Todd Richard at first with a long goatee he looked more like an early pioneer than the local handyman that once replaced my hot water tank.  Time had changed his appearance, a little older, some gray in that beard, but Todd was still fit, steady, interesting and kind.

Over a cup of coffee we talked about his inspirations for his songs, the upcoming Nashville recording sessions, the promotion tour that would follow and somewhere along the line we convinced the Coffee Shop to slip Todd's 'demo" CD into the stereo.  It blew me away.

Classic Rock is what I regularly listen to, but, Todd Richard's music has the big "it" that "cross-over" sound that made people like Keith Urban and Shania Twain such stars.  There is some rock in there, the music is bright, energetic, the lyrics insightful.

It's quite a journey from Harrison Hot Springs B.C. to Nashville, Tennessee even with a guitar and grin and head full of songs.  This is the launch of an exciting career and these videos of the process and these early song versions take you right into the studio with Todd.

So have a look and more importantly have a listen.  Someday you'll be able to say "I can remember when".

Nashville Sessions #2 YouTube Video


Nashville Sessions #3 Hero to Zero


Spread the word about Todd Richard he's worth it.

Stephen Mullock RI is an award winning full-time real estate agent with 30 years of experience and hundreds of sales. Thinking of buying or selling real estate in the Fraser Cheam communities of Chilliwack, Agassiz or Harrison Hot Springs? Contact Steve (click here) for experience, local knowledge and friendly service you’ll be happy you did.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Guest Photographer, Leigh-Anne Mullock _Harrison Lake


Leigh-Anne Mullock ©
Last week, while I conducted a bit of real estate business in the Village of Harrison Hot Springs, daughter Leigh-Anne Mullock, a graphic designer, took time to take the following pictures of Harrison Lake and the Village.

The day was partly overcast, miserable looking actually and a fresh snow was evident on the nearby mountain tops.  The naturally sandy beach at Harrison Lake was fenced to reduce erosion from the winter winds coming off the lake.  I didn't think that a good photograph was possible but Leigh-Anne kept on about "the light". In the end, I have to admit she was right - even off season the lake and village look spectacular - I hope you like her Harrison Lake winter landscape photography as much as I do.  Imagine living here...



All photographs © Leigh-Anne Mullock, 2011, All Rights Reserved

Stephen Mullock RI is an award winning full-time real estate agent with 30 years of experience and hundreds of sales. Thinking of buying or selling real estate in the Fraser Cheam communities of Chilliwack, Agassiz or Harrison Hot Springs? Contact Steve (click here) for experience, local knowledge and friendly service you’ll be happy you did.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Guest Photographer - Leigh-Anne Mullock, Part 1_ Agassiz


One of my photography ambitions has been to capture the beautiful Chilliwack Fraser Cheam world in the low light situations that the winter months present. This week, I tagged along with my daughter, graphic designer Leigh-Anne Mullock who took the following photographs shown with permission.

The first series was taken in Agassiz, B.C. with the remnants of the latest snowfall still on the ground.  The warm browns of the fields and corn stubble appear stark against a steely gray sky. A ragged bramble fence line lead to a solitary farm house.

I wouldn't even have stopped on a day like this, but, I have to admire her results.  Imagine living here...






Stephen Mullock RI is an award winning full-time real estate agent with 30 years of experience and hundreds of sales. Thinking of buying or selling real estate in the Fraser Cheam communities of Chilliwack, Agassiz or Harrison Hot Springs? Contact Steve (click here) for experience, local knowledge and friendly service you’ll be happy you did.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Chilliwack* Real Estate Market Review & Analysis: March 1, 2011

This review and analysis looks at the residential markets in the Chilliwack* British Columbia area for the month of February 2011.  It is divided into two sections: single family houses and strata homes (apartments and townhouses) and is based upon my armchair analysis work.  Use it at your own discretion.

SINGLE FAMILY HOMES

Chilliwack* Single Family Detached Housing Sales Report - January 2011
MONTH Sales Average Sale Price Days on Market Active Listings
February   2011  104 $331,000 80 847
January     2011  68 $331,000 79 774
February   2010  116 $360,000 57 n/a

Median Price of Active Chilliwack* Single Family Detached Real Estate Listings: March 1, 2011 - $369,900

Last month I predicted, that with the Federal mortgage tinkering resolved, that the Chilliwack* real estate market sales numbers would continue to improve and they have. 

The average, Chilliwack Single Family Home, sale price has remained steady since January, and, we are starting to see an annual build up in listings ready to vie for the spring market.  We also have a build-up of buyer interest and on the right, properly priced, property multiple bids are appearing as this Realtor© recently found out.  This is an excellent time of year to start planning for listing placement on the Chilliwack* real estate market.  Give me a call for a free consultation about how to prepare your home for sale.

The velocity of the Chilliwack* real estate market is at 91% of the ten year average, 104 sales compared to a 10 year average of 114 sales, still needing improvement but stronger than last month's 85 percent performance.

The average Chilliwack* Single Family Home sale price ten years ago in February 2001 was $151,000.

STRATA HOMES


MONTH Sales Average Sale Price Days on Market Active Listings
Feb     2011  68 $207,000 96 440
Jan     2011  42 $208,000 76 411
Feb    2010  60 $226,000 48 n/a

Median Price of Active Chilliwack* Strata Real Estate Listings: March 1, 2011 - $219,900

The average selling price of a Chilliwack* Strata Home remained steady compared to the average a month ago.

The best news of the day is that our 10-year Chilliwack Strata Home velocity index was exceeded!  At 105% of the 10 year average, February may represent a turning point in the market for Chilliwack* Strata Homes There were 68 Strata Home sales in the month of February 2011 compared to the 10 year average of 65.  From a Buyer's viewpoint prices are lower than they were a year ago and financing remains very attractive. For Seller's it means a greater chance for making a sale.  The sale of a Strata Home is tricky business, the contract of purchase and sale I wrote this week was 8 pages long; be sure, that you find a professional Realtor© skilled and willing enough to explain it to you.

The average selling price of a Chilliwack* Strata Home 10 years ago in February 2001 was $91,000

Notes:
The analysis above is based on my interpretation of information provided by the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board and does not take into account private sales.

*The term "Chilliwack" is used here quite loosely to refer to an area serviced by the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board which includes communities such as Chilliwack, Agassiz, Harrison Hot Springs, Hope, Yale and Boston Bar. The Fraser Valley West area embraces the entire Fraser Valley Real Estate Board area which extends from Abbotsford to Delta.

Copyright March 1, 2011 by Stephen Mullock.
 
Stephen Mullock RI
is an award winning full-time real estate agent with 30 years of experience and hundreds of sales. Thinking of buying or selling real estate in the Fraser Cheam communities of Chilliwack, Agassiz or Harrison Hot Springs? Contact Steve (click here) for experience, local knowledge and friendly service you’ll be happy you did.