The need to build and integrate climate risk factors into the decision-making process when buying land, a house or building is becoming more and more relevant as the world’s climate is alarmingly changing.

It is indeed a challenge just by looking at how it will be placed into the decision-making process, as real estate investors and developers will need to create a standard method on how it will be applied in relation to investment processes, which, of course, could mean higher insurance premiums, operational costs, and such. But the bigger question is, how resilient are these buildings and houses and land to stand against extreme weather conditions? Would you buy a house in an area that will be prone to flood after 5 or 10 years?  Let’s take a closer look at what climate change is and its impact to the real estate.

What is Climate Change and Its Impact to the Environment?

We’ve heard a lot about climate change and how it affects our world today. Climate change, to put it simply, is the change in temperature and weather conditions in a certain place over a long period of time. Sounds simple enough—temperature and weather, they always change. However, if this change comes crashing down like big waves in the oceanfront causing floods all around, or like a blaze of fire creeping into town. Now it matters, doesn’t it?

Reports from NASA concluded that the Earth’s surface is warming—and over the past 20 years, scientists have observed many of the warmest years in the planet. So, what is causing climate change? The scientists see one main reason: human activity.

Over the years, there is an increase in the use of fossil fuels like coal and oil and gas, which are mainly used to generate electricity, transportations, and to supply power to manufacturers and other industries. Deforestation is also one thing and it’s in fact a primary contributor to climate change because trees absorb and store carbon dioxide. All these materials—the fossil fuels, and the living trees, when burned, releases greenhouse gases into the Earth’s atmosphere which traps the heat and that the sunlight brings from leaving the atmosphere, and eventually cause what we call: climate change.

Climate Change and Its Impact to the Real Estate

If you look at it generally, climate change has direct impact in the environment, but if you look a bit deeper, one of its major impacts is on land, and no other market more closely related to land than real estate. The shifting tides on beachfronts, the drying forests beside some towns, while these phenomena seem dismissible to others, it is increasingly becoming a driving force in the real estate market. The younger generation, in particular, being more aware of climate change eventual effects, are seen to include this in their homebuying decision-making.
Safety is a primary concern to owning a house, and that’s actually becoming difficult to achieve with all the drastic effects of climate change. This means it could increase the costs of owning a home, like higher utility costs and repairs for damages. In addition to that, it is causing unusually high prices for homes in certain areas that are being defined as climate change safe areas, as foreigners and those who are in the higher end buyers are clamoring to target these areas.

The US real estate markets have already started to look more closely into this issue. For example, a tech company in San Francisco offers a climate check in specific areas, helping people to understand and validate their decision when buying a house in a certain area. Accordingly, the Canadian real estate markets will eventually apply the same, especially now that the United Nations warns about how climate change will bring more extreme weather conditions. It’s a remarkable move to consider climate risk assessments in buying a property, and it’s good that the Canadian real estate is looking into including this in its homebuying process.

With climate risk assessment, maps and other significant data will be readily available to help buyers understand the location of the house that they are eyeing for. They will be able to analyze the risks of floods, fires, and other disasters caused by climate change when they are searching for a new house. Say, a buyer bought a nice house in what he or she thought to be located in a prime location, then after 20 years of living there, started to experience frequent flooding in the area. This is the very example why a climate risk assessment should be factored into a property’s value.

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One of the causes of air pollution is smoke and we all are aware of how harmful it is to our health. Dangers of secondhand smoke and wildfire smoke are real problems that we face, and the bigger problem is we cannot fully control the source.

In general, breathing in smoke is highly unsafe as they contain chemicals like toxic gases and particulate matters that could damage our body. More so, smoke is so nasty that the smell of it can linger in the air for days or even weeks, and the hazardous fine particles from it, particularly from wildfire smoke, can actually travel thousands of miles and that could cause health problems when it enters our body.

Think about getting asthma, bronchitis, pneumonia, COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and other lung-related diseases due to inhaling polluted air. What if you live in a place where wildfire is rampant or what if your neighbors are chain smokers? Poor air quality will not only give you lung diseases but long term exposure to such is also linked to diabetes and kidney disease, fertility problems, high blood pressure, and accordingly, even Alzheimer’s. We are all at risk especially the children, pregnant women, elderly, and those who have underlying respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.

Good news is there are ways we can improve the air quality of our home and one of the most widespread method is by using air purifiers. Air purifiers are made to improve the air quality of our homes by making it clean and easy to breathe. But we cannot just buy any air purifiers that are sold in the market, we should be mindful of which device is best and effective for our situation. This is because not all air purifiers contain the same features—there are air purifiers that have HEPA filters that filter air particles but do not filter the gases, while there are air purifiers that are designed to filter gases and odors but cannot filter anything more than those.

You’d think it’s quite overwhelming to finding the best one that eliminates or reduces smoke in your home. Remember, it’s situational. If you live near the sources of wildfires, don’t forget that it’s not a complete solution and should never be considered a substitute at eliminating the source of the smoke.

Now, if you think air purifier is the best way to reduce your exposure to smoke, read on to learn more about the potential dangers of smoke and what air purifiers can do.

What’s in smoke?

As mentioned earlier, smoke contains chemicals like fine or particulate matters and toxic gases and air purifiers are made to filter only either of it. Let’s have a closer look at these two major components of smoke: First is the fine or particulate matter or known as particle pollution. This is a mixture of super tiny solids and liquid droplets that are extremely harmful when they enter our body through our mouth or nose and into our lungs as these are made up of acids like nitrates and sulfates, metals, soil or dust particles and organic chemicals. They typically cause a runny nose or burning eyes, or worst, lung disease. Second is the toxic gases or known as gaseous pollutants, which includes combustion like carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides and VOCs or volatile organic compounds like benzene and formaldehyde (known to cause cancer).

Why get rid of smoke?

While smoke is quite irritating even just by its smell that you want it to immediately disappear, there are far more serious causes that you want to get rid of it and not linger into your home.

Smoke can be very harmful to children, the elderly, and those with respiratory condition (asthma for example). Take note that if you have family members of this category, they are more at risk.

While smoke from wildfires is harmful, it is temporary. However, you should take action when it comes to smoke that comes from a consistent source, like secondhand smoke from a neighbor. The 250 harmful chemicals in tobacco smoke, 69 of which are carcinogens (benzene, arsenic, formaldehyde to name a few) should be enough reason to tell your neighbor to do their smoking a few yards away. These harmful chemicals, as a secondhand smoke, can cause in children an increased risk of SIDS, colds and bronchitis, and worsens asthma, and worse it may cause premature death for nonsmoking adults and children.

Not all air purifiers are made the same

Now that you have an idea of the components of smoke, let’s dig into the kinds of air purifiers that filter particles and/or gases.

There are four types of air purifiers: HEPA, carbon, hybrid, and PECO.

HEPA or the high-efficiency particulate air filters. This air purifier removes over 99.97 percent of particulate matter from the air. It traps smoke particles, reducing a person’s exposure to such particles. Just remember to replace filters as needed for it to be always efficient at what it does.

Carbon filters. These air purifiers can remove gases and odors, but not all. You may still need adequate ventilation and a sensor for carbon monoxide as this gas can not be eliminated by carbon filters. You might also have to regularly replace the filter as this could be easily saturated with gases. It is best to pick this kind of purifier with a high quantity of carbon.

Hybrid air purifiers. As the name suggests, this kind of air purifier acts both like a HEPA and carbon filter, filtering both particles and gases. It is however good to note that with its filters being stacked together, there is a tendency of a decreased effectiveness.

PECO air purifier. Like the hybrid, this kind of air purifier mechanically filters particles, but rather than using carbon to filter gases, it uses a chemical reaction to destroy the gases. This process, however, takes a longer time than a carbon filter does.

The ideal air purifier for each situation

Having learned the technologies behind each air purifier, let us look into each smoke situation and see which air purifier is ideal for each situation.

Wildfire smoke. As mentioned, this is mostly temporary or short-term. Particulate matters are the major concern in this type of smoke, and a HEPA filter can pretty well address this issue. However, if you want to address both the particles and gases, your best option is the PECO air purifier.

Secondhand tobacco/wood smoke. This particular smoke usually comes from the neighbors who are smoking or burning wood nearby, and the smoke drifts inside your home. This is a low level of exposure to smoke and could be addressed by either a PECO air purifier or a hybrid one. This is to eliminate both the particles and gaseous pollutants.

Tobacco or wood smoke. In this scenario, the smoke from a tobacco or wood (example, burning wood in a wood stove) is generated from inside the home. With this high level of exposure to smoke, there really is no ideal air purifier to clean out the air in this kind of situation. The best you can do is to smoke outside and replace wood stove.

Taking care of that smoke odor

Another lingering concern with regards to smoke is the smell. The ideal air purifier for the smoke odor could be the carbon filter or the PECO air purifier, as these air purifiers can clean out gases. However, note that smell could still linger despite using an ideal air purifier. Tobacco smoke, for instance, sticks into all kinds of materials inside the home. An old fashion comprehensive cleaning like steam cleaning carpets, rugs, and upholsteries will reduce odors. Drastic measures for smoke odors that have built up over time would be replacing the affected furniture, repainting the walls, or renovation.


Removing or eliminating the source of smoke is typically the best solution for having clean air in your home, however you may not be able to do this as often as you may think. An air purifier is your next best option, and in some cases your only option, in dealing with smoke. With your newly acquired knowledge about air purifiers, this should now help you pick the best fit for your particular situation and budget.

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Homeownership while it has been an individualistic goal to so many, but rarely do we understand the underlying and far-reaching benefits of homeownership beyond the homeowner.

No doubt that one of the important benefits of homeownership is financial—and one that so many are aware of. What we tend to simply forget are the non-financial gains of owning a house, covering health, education, and societal or communal benefits.

Family + Child Outcomes (Security. Self-esteem. Confidence)

Benefits of homeownership associated with child outcomes are both behavioral and academic. It includes improved self-esteem and an increase in children's academic performance. The stability and security, which homeownership offers, contribute to better home and learning environment, and ultimately better educational outcomes.

Going back to financial benefits, homeownership dividend extends across generations—not just short-term.

Health Outcomes (Health. Stability. Safety)

Gaining the ability to retain financial independence through home equity and greater ability to retain care at home, homeowners are less likely and less willing to shift into long-term care.

There is direct relation of health with homeownership and housing in general. Health through homeownership comes primarily from a combination of residential stability, quality and safety, and financial security. And these benefits extend to neighborhoods and communities.

Civic Outcomes (Connectivity. Roots. Community.)

At a time when a significant number of Canadians having reported feeling increased isolation and loneliness, homeownership is one way of maintaining strong and stable communities.

Homeowners, by virtue of their longer tenure and more stable financial situation, are more inclined to invest into and participate in their neighborhoods, which is a positive civic outcome spawn from the rootedness of homeowners.

Homeownership, with its financial benefits impacting all income levels, also showed that it is key to reducing inequality across the country, which is why it is direly important that public policy and the federal government should continue to support homeownership as part of its overall housing agenda.

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Badly needed—that’s how experts define the housing platforms that are surfacing on the coming elections, and every Canadian voter must expect a resounding message from major federal parties during the election campaign—particularly on how housing will become more affordable.

Why the high cost you may ask

Consider back a decade ago, building cost for a single-family home would be around $100/square foot, and compare that with today’s similar build which costs roughly $325-$400/square foot. That is a jump in price of more than 300% in just a couple of years.

Add to that the wage inflation caused by the shortage of quality manpower to build a home. Let’s take for example an electrician who charged $50/hour way back a couple of years ago, and compare that with an electrician’s current rate at $100/hour. These additional costs add up to the affordability or non-affordability of a home.

Platforms and federal elections

Those are the affordability struggles to buy a house. Indeed, we all deserve to have a home. After all, it’s one of the basic needs, and for it to incur affordability issues is one of the great debates in government policy and political platforms. But what do we know about these housing platforms so far? And, the bigger question is, with all these housing platforms, how sure are we that the upcoming federal election will improve housing affordability?
We’ve been through several elections, with several policies made on housing affordability, still things are a lot less bright. Taking a quick look at the housing platforms made by the different parties—Canadians deserve affordable place to live in, so they plan to build more affordable houses, ban foreign investors, create seven to 10 and up to 30 year mortgages, ensure savings for first time home buyers, increase tax payable on flipped properties, et cetera. It’s quite interesting to see when and how will all these be implemented.

You see, governments cannot just do this or that and implement this or that, only to lose the balance between housing affordability and other governmental real estate friendly mandates (such as maintaining low interest rates, COVID funding, setting millions of immigrants, and so on).

House pricing will continue to rise, and people will still continue to buy houses no matter what. But perhaps there might be some new programs that will help with housing affordability. Let’s wait and see.

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Here's a video we made for this upcoming listing, check out the awesome forested area, very rare for a Calgary property!

Discovery Ridge is a Calgary neighbourhood that has been master-planned with sprawling beautiful boulevards that spill into an amazing forest oasis. When the community was established, the communities' hottest properties ran from $1 million to $1.5 million, and when these lots come up for sale they are in high demand.

The first floor of this home has a family room that's fitted with slate and a gas fireplace, as well as a beautiful formal dining and living room. Give us a call and we’ll be happy to give you a tour of this magnificent property, you really have to see it in person!

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Perhaps it’s time to sell your home and you are looking for some great ways to have your property stand out among others in Calgary's ever surging market.

We have seen this trend pop up in show homes but many older homes have bare walls ready for a touch of style. Looking for a reasonably affordable weekend project to add some serious style a room in your house? This is a great way to either add that extra little bit of value to sellers or just give your family a stylish refresh as we prep for another year of working from home.

Accent walls can transform the home with their texture, color and design. You may try out colour, texture, and pattern without radically altering the basis of the space. Having an accent wall in your house may totally transform the mood of the whole space, and the results will always be positive. Although it may seem like it would mess with your symmetry, it really simply adds a little of flair, mystery, and depth. After seeing them, you'll be desperate to have one in every area of your home.

We checked out 3 feature walls from a few of our favorite design blogs, check out their sites for more detail and follow us on Facebook to keep up withmore design and home reno tips!

Kate Ellen - Modern and Trendy

Feature Wall in a Living Room

Kate and her husband and pulled apart their dining room for a weekend. It sounds like their project crept into the rest of their week a bit (As these projects tend to do, there’s a little bit of a perfectionist in all of us) Check out their before and after pics for this amazing transition!

She stressing the use of choosing the right shade of white (Now might be the time to check up on your paint trends) but say priming the area first helped get a really great result. Pay attention to how they rearranged the furniture, installed a new light fixture, and added a few plants, the styling on this one is really great!

Katie Kurtz - Mature and balanced

Katie stressed the importance of keeping the functionality of a room, and here is a really good example of a great design choice:  Rather than filling in one of what seemed like a second unnecessary doorway they chose to retain the formal dining room since as future purchasers often look for this type of entrance in a dining layout.

Pay attention to her contrasting materials and great use of proportion. The functionality of the millwork cabinets ads a functional dimension while retaining a great balance of style. We are very inspired to see more people try something like this one!

Earlier this year we sold a home in Strathcona Park that had a similar setup but the homeowner used stone and maple paneling; don’t be afraid to experiment with contrasting materials!

Ana White - Classic Design

Ana White found this traditional wainscoting approach to building a feature wall to be a great alternative to wallpaper for her project. One great consideration here was the simple, classic design affords flexibility for styling: chic furniture and creeping vines could transform this into a cool hipster inspired space just as appropriately as classic timeless furniture, rugs, colors and textures in the room could get a nice boost from this tasteful panelling.

Note how they didn't install a raised panel between the boards, and just painted the wall instead. Find shortcuts to make your project easier and don’t underestimate the importance of different paint textures.

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As the summer reaches it’s end, many of us are changing things up in life, whether we are getting our kids back to school, starting a new career, or just trying to find ways to adjust to our new normal. One thing I have heard over and over talking to clients last weekend were how many people have just found out that they will continue to be working for home from the time being; with Alberta’s new policies on the 4th wave in question. There are still a lot of people who feel unsure of what their working life is going to look like going into the next season, but many proactive employers have already announced extensions to existing work from home policies

How comfortable is your work from home setup? Are you feeling the fatigue? This article is your all encompassing guide to creating a home environment where this kind of lifestyle can be sustainable.

For the epidemic, many individuals have built up temporary home offices, which will not function in the long run. Aside from having the appropriate tools, the physical setup — the ergonomics of the workplace — is crucial, particularly when it comes to preventing repetitive strain injuries that may be caused by a poor setup.

Ideally, you'd utilise a modest room with enough space for a desk and computer equipment, as well as a door that can be closed to keep work and home life distinct.

Most individuals don't have extra space, perhaps it's more realistic to turn a guest room into a dual-purpose area that can be used as an office during the day and as a guest room when visitors come. Multi outprpose furniture goes a long way towards creating adaptable spaces.

If you can't obtain a dedicated place that you can separate from the rest of your life, try to locate a niche space that is as far away from the rest of the home as feasible.

It might be tempting to take a look at homes for sale in your are with just a little bit more room (and we're always here to help you if you are!) but this guide serves to help you adapt your existing space in the most effective way possible.

It's very important to dial in your desk and seating ergonomics.

A work-height desk or table is required in your area. From the floor to the top of the work surface, the industry standard is 29 inches. Tall individuals benefit from being taller, while short ones benefit from being shorter. Many desks and tables are height-adjustable, typically through the feet.

However, that industry standard is predicated on utilising a pen and paper rather than a computer and mouse. That's why keyboard trays usually come out from under the work area and are an inch or two lower than the desk or table height. Get a keyboard-and-mouse tray if you have the room (it must be broad enough for both!). If not, try lowering your desk to tray height; if you write on paper as well, a writing surface may be purchased for pen-and-paper work.

If your forearms are parallel to the ground when you sit up straight and your wrist is not curved up or down while you type or mouse, your work surface is at the proper height. With your fingers hanging slightly down to the keyboard, the top surface of your wrist should be on the same plane as the top of your forearm. It's simple to injure the wrists by bending them for extended durations of time.

Monitor height that is appropriate

Get a big monitor (perhaps two) for your home office, exactly as you would at work. Any major manufacturer will have high-quality monitors, but we would recommend asking your local computer store about options with higher DPI, eco mode, and other features that make long working sessions healthier and easier on the eyes.

Your monitor should be set up such that when you sit straight and gaze straight ahead, your eyes are 25 percent to 30% below the top of the screen. That way, you don't hunch your back and maintain your shoulders level - two simple ways to injure yourself.

You'll probably need a monitor riser to reach the right height (top is 25% to 30% above eye level).  An underrated method is to use a monitor stand so you can tilt and swivel the screen depending on what you are doing on that day.

Not just any chair.

There are several terrible chairs on the market that may cause injury if used for extended periods of time. Dining chairs and deck chairs, for example, are seldom at the proper height and do not usually promote the required upright posture.

If you can afford it, invest in a professional office chair which allows you to customise the fit to your body and workplace. However, they usually cost $500 or more; there are other considerably less expensive office chairs — between $100 and $300 — that will suffice. Whether at all feasible, try them on in person since you can't tell if they'll fit from a photo on a website.

Make sure it's adjustable in height, rolling, and has lumbar support for your lower back. It should also have adjustable seat pan tilt, arm height, and lateral arm position. It is better to utilise an arm rest, but only if you use it correctly: That is, your forearm should rest gently on the arm rest, with no pressure exerted by your arm on the arm rest. The arm rest's main purpose is to remind you to keep your arm in the proper posture, not to support its weight.

Laptop working from home

Organize yourself

It's pointless to spend time styling your workplace if you don't also set up practical methods to stay organised; otherwise, it won't be long until it appears like a jumbled mess.

To keep papers organised, storage options such as magazine boxes, baskets, and folders are essential. Consider installing a wall shelf to maximise storage while also providing a significant dose of flair.

Excellent lighting

It's all too easy to overlook the impact of your working environment on your productivity. Lighting is an issue that many people overlook. You should have enough indirect light to brighten your workplace so that you can read documents and view physical things readily. The optimum illumination is typically above lighting, such as a ceiling lamp.

Lights that are not in your direct field of vision or that reflect off your monitor are referred to as indirect lighting. When the sun shines, an exterior window behind or to the side of your desk, for example, may cause glare on your monitor screen. Natural light is nice, but it should be diffused with shades or drapes to avoid glare.

Similarly, check that your monitor's brightness isn't too low or too high, since both may induce eyestrain. Of course, subjective terms like "too dark" and "too bright" exist, but a reasonable rule of thumb is that the monitor's illumination intensity should be just a bit brighter than your ambient lighting, and that ambient lighting should be adequate to read paper documents without extra light.

You’re spending less on your commute. But now you need faster internet. Did you know many broadband packages are either cheaper of faster than they were 8-10 years ago?

Most cities and suburbs have at least one high-speed internet provider; 50Mbps is the minimum speed to aim for, and the more people using the internet at the same time, the faster the service should be.

Your home's bandwidth is also important. If feasible, connect your computer to your network via an Ethernet cable; this is particularly essential if you perform video or other bandwidth-intensive tasks. If you can't wire your computer to your router, ensure you are using the fastest possible Wi-Fi Mode your equipment offers.

accomodating guest in work from home environment

Accessories & Other Equipment

Of course, you'll need a keyboard and a mouse or touchpad: If you're using an external monitor, your laptop is probably folded closed or off to the side, making it difficult to reach the built-in keyboard and trackpad. Any keyboard, mouse, or touchpad/trackpad will do as long as they are responsive to touch and are not the incorrect size or height for your posture. Wireless ones eliminate the need for cables, although they do need recharging or battery replacement.

If you work in a shared place, get a headset so you may participate in online conference calls with less noise seeping into your house, where other people are working, sleeping, attending courses, and so on. Working is more difficult due to the conflicting sounds.

Instead of a headset, you could use wired or wireless earbuds, although many people find the in-ear version to be unpleasant, if not painful, over time. (A headset, on the other hand, sits on a cushioned pad over your ear.) Furthermore, wireless earbuds' microphones generally have worse audio quality, and there are concerns about hearing loss over long term use with the speaker being so far in your ear canal. In a pitch, earbuds are acceptable, but if you're in meetings all day, use a headset or the computer's audio instead.

If you use a laptop, a docking station is a must-have since it allows you to plug the computer into the dock while leaving all other connections alone, then simply remove the laptop when you need to work somewhere else, such as on business trip or for an in-office visit. Most business-class Windows laptops come with a docking station; MacBook users should get one of OWC's docks.

Add personal touches.

Choose accessories that improve the comfortable atmosphere of your home office, such as a beautiful mug for a pencil holder, stylish notepads and sticky notes, and a colourful waste basket, unless you're aiming for a modern design. Wrap a beautiful fabric around your bulletin board, and conceal practical bookshelves behind drapes made of the same material. Whether it's your kids' framed artwork or a famous painting, hang inspiring posters on the walls.

Clear out the clutter

Clear your workplace of stacks of miscellaneous documents and folders, books you aren't using, and other clutter. If you haven't used or won't use anything in three months, put it away.

Decluttering will provide you a clear canvas to work with while styling, as well as an immediate feeling of peace and order.


In a home office, it's critical to have enough illumination. Install lights above your reading area, on the computer, and behind you to eliminate reflections off the computer display and minimise eye strain. Place the computer display at a comfortable distance from your chair so you don't have to squint or see the screen with reading glasses. You'll be able to work longer and more safely if you reduce eye strain.

shopping for lighting for home office

Backup & Security

I strongly advise you to keep a computer backup. Backup and recovery in Windows 10, like Time Machine in macOS, makes backup simple, so grab an external drive and start using it. However, storing all of your work on a cloud service like OneDrive or iCloud is an even better backup option since it ensures that if your computer is destroyed or lost, all of your work is readily accessible from another computer. By default, Macs and Windows PCs retain a local duplicate of cloud-stored work, so you can continue work on your files if the internet goes down; they will sync once internet connection is restored. The greatest guarantee that you have your data is to combine cloud storage with a physical backup.

Make Provisions for Visitors

Keep things as professional as possible if you have customers in your home office—make sure they don't have to pass through a sleeping infant or a filthy kitchen to get to you. Take into account the privacy of your job. Provide comfortable seats, a reading light, and intriguing material if customers will be waiting for an appointment with you.


An office that matches the style and comfort of the rest of your house is a location where you'll want to work late.

Don't let function overshadow form.

Your workstation, shelves, and storage should work for you, not against you. Before you buy furniture, think about your workflow and what you need at your fingertips, and then search for pieces that are both attractive and practical.

Instead of shouting "soulless cube," home office furniture should compliment other areas in your home. If you have the room, warm wood and soft, comfortable seats or a couch are perfect for a classic house. Artistic items or trendy metal furniture may be used in a contemporary home office.

Use a Color You Like on the Walls

You need a hue that makes your work motor hum. Forget "office beige." For some, a bright, cheerful hue like orange or lime green is the answer. Others need a soothing colour like botanical green or sea foam blue to function well. Learn more about how different colours may influence your mood.

A View

When you look up from your computer, place the desk so you can look at anything other than a blank wall (even if you like the colour). Natural light from a window is great, but if you don't have one, hang a beautiful painting over the desk or turn your chair to face the entrance.

Get some new stationery

New stationery is a necessity in our thoughts for simple ideas to build a beautiful home office. It not only provides colour to your workplace and refreshes it, but it's also entertaining! Typo, kikki. Our favourite sites to buy for gorgeous but cheap notebooks, pencils, and other stationery are K and Temple & Webster.

Wall art Artwork or framed prints are another method to brighten up your walls. You could also create your own wall art for less money by designing an empowering or funny phrase using a programme like Picmonkey. It may be just what you need in your workplace to stop procrastinating or break through writer's block.

Make your space feel luxurious: Consider adding a rug, wall art, or other features

We're often surprised by how few home offices we see without a rug. This one object has the power to completely alter your workplace by anchoring the space and providing softness.

feature wall for home office

Decorative wall

Consider painting or adding wallpaper to a feature wall or all four walls of your workplace if you want to create a lasting change.

Stay tuned for tomorrow's post, where we will go over how to create an awesome functional feature wall!

We will continue to post more tips and tricks to making working from home as comfortable and convenient as possible.

If selling your home, moving, or searching for another property within the city is not an option but your lifestyle demands change, we will continue to help you stay up to date on new work from home trends. If you are interested in exploring options with regard to finding a new home or a new space, reach out to us and we will reveal some really interesting property opportunities for the WFH lifestyle many other Realtors don't consider. Many current homes for sale in Calgary have great examples of work from home setups and taking some time to browse listings might be very useful for inspiration.

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Every Canadian knows that the real estate prices in Canada have increased very quickly.

But do you know how fast? To get a clearer picture of how fast home prices have gone up in Canada, we have to compare it with the US home prices. Going back to the Great Recession, data have shown that while US real estate prices plunged during those times, Canadian home prices maintained its accelerated increase. In fact, Canada even filled the market with policies that are designed to increase the amount of debt a household can get. As a result, Canadian home prices experienced a leap that is (a whopping) 29 times faster than the US home prices growth. A staggering 88% increase in Canadian home prices since 2005, meant prices were almost double after 15 years coming into 2020. Contrast that with the US home prices which increased at only 2.9% over the same period, thus you get the increase in Canadian home prices that is 29 times faster than the US.

This accelerated increase in Canadian real estate prices is still happening even during this slow down of the global economy due to the pandemic. Prices of real estate in Q1 2020 have gone up at 2.4% from the previous quarter. And comparing it to last year, prices have gone up at 3.4% (after adjusted for inflation). The US home prices in the meantime had a much slower rise in the same quarter, although it still saw about the same growth. In Q1 2020, US home prices grew 0.5% from the previous quarter, and 3.3% increase when compared to last year, which is the slowest annual growth rate for US real estate prices since 2013. This goes to show that the growth in Canadian home prices is accelerating, while the US is losing speed.

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We just survived one of Calgary's worst summers for smoke and poor air quality. How do we prepare our homes for next year?

Last week we considered some quick ideas to improve your quality of life during the smoky season, but today it’s time to talk about more options you can take as we prepare our homes for similar conditions in the foreseeable future.

When wildfires raged throughout British Columbia, individuals in the path of the flames were showered with powdery debris, and even those living kilometres away were inhaling air contaminated with hazardous chemicals and tiny particles from burned building materials and plants.

Here's what else you can do to seal your house against smoke, remove odours from indoor air and furniture, and rapidly make your yard more fire resistant. The landscape of Canada's housing market will be altered by wildfires: According to real estate brokers, the quantity of available properties has been cut by thousands. We were fortunate this summer in Alberta not to have too much wildfire close to urban centers, but other provinces weren’t so lucky.

Man spraying insulated product in attic

Home Weatherization - Reduce the amount of air that enters your home.

Weatherization of houses is recommended by the federal government in order to minimise the amount of energy used for heating and cooling. While weatherization is taking place, actions should also be made to reduce pollutants from within the home. 

Furthermore, homeowners should be on the lookout for symptoms of poor ventilation, such as stuffy air, moisture condensation on cold surfaces, or mould and mildew growth. Additional weatherization measures should not be implemented until these issues have been resolved.

Installing storm windows, weather stripping, caulking, and blown-in wall insulation, on the other hand, can limit the quantity of external air penetrating a home.

illustration of home air ventilation

It’s the end of August, and Calgary HVAC Companies are Finally Available for Booking. Is your Home due for Maintenance?

Check your heating filters on a daily basis. Because of the volume of wildfire smoke, you will need to change or clean them more frequently. Consumer Reports discovered that once a filter is full, it no longer catches particles. To ensure that particles are collected, make sure you have the correct size filter.

If you have a fresh air system, turn it off until the smoke has cleared since it will bring in unclean air from outside. Turn it back on once the smoke has cleared.

Prepare backup filters. Only HEPA filters, which push air through a tiny mesh and capture particles in central heating, ventilation, cooling, and air systems, are recommended by health professionals and others. Set the fan to ‘on’ rather than ‘auto’ if you have a central HVAC system to ensure the fan is always circulating and filtering air. HVAC systems do not bring in air from the outside.

sliding a new filter into an hvac unit

An Air Purifier is a good idea, but it’s important to choose something that fits the space.

Consider the square footage of the space you wish to cleanse when selecting the correct size air purifier for your needs.

If you have allergies or asthma and are searching for an air purifier to assist control your symptoms, you should also examine the air change per hour (ACH) rate of the air purifier. The number of times an air purifier can filter the whole volume of air in the treatment space each hour is referred to as ACH.

For allergy and asthma patients, air purifiers that can clean the air in an area at least four times per hour are ideal. A pace of four air changes per hour guarantees that the air purifier completely cleans the air and filters out as many tiny symptom-triggering allergens as possible, allowing you to breathe easily.

Size Recommendations

Small: These air purifiers are intended for personal use or rooms of up to 300 square feet.

Medium: Look for an air purifier for rooms ranging from 300 to 700 square feet.

Large: Units specified for up to and over 2000 square feet are often inbuilt or part of an AC unit.

For heavily populated areas or a bedroom for someone with asthma, we recommend purchasing a portable air cleaner with a clean air delivery rate (CADR) greater than 300 cubic feet per minute.

If the air in your room is stagnant, you risk just cleaning the air in a limited part of the space near your purifier. A purifier with an integrated air projection system that pushes clean air into all corners of the room while cycling bad air back into the machine for purification is the ideal setup.

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Everyone would say owning a house is a very expensive choice, but we still want to have a place to call our own.

In Canada, they say middle-income earners cannot afford to have a house, and even high-income earners are struggling to afford a simple house in high cost living areas. But Canadians still want to own a home. I’m not saying it’s a right or wrong decision, it’s totally understandable why we would choose to have a place to call our own rather than renting and having a landlord. But let’s put in mind that owning a home could impact our financial stability. Say, it’s kind of normal these days to have high levels of debt, still, it is best to consider our budget so that we will not be burdened by our choice.

If you’re one who is eager to find a house or dreaming of having one someday, let me help you understand how that is actually possible to achieve. Homebuying is a big decision that needs the advice from a professional. Our goal as a real estate agent is to assist people in the selling and buying of their properties. We help ease the buying and selling or renting process—from providing guidance to conducting research, to learning the trend of the real estate market to knowing every little detail and all the processes that comes along in home selling and purchase. Here’s a snippet of what we can do:

- Ask anything about home buying and we give you the answer.

- Provide you with listings according to your needs and budget. For example, we can give you the foreclosure listings in Calgary or homes for sale in Calgary under 300,000.

- Help you with scheduling time for touring the properties that you’re interested in.

- Conduct property analysis to help you determine the right offer.

- Help you with price negotiations. Top real estate agents mastered this skill.

- Refer other real estate professionals like real estate attorneys and inspectors to help you expedite the closing process.

While it’s true that anyone can shop for a house, having a professional makes a big difference. Being experts in this field, we have a strong understanding of the laws, rules, and regulations involved in home buying and selling transactions. And in tough times like this, we can help you get the most out of your income and explore options you probably wouldn’t have thought of.

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The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.