No, they don’t. But the beautiful Shuswap Lake does. Four, in fact. The lake consists of four arms, forming a shape reminiscent of the letter “H” as in “Hello!” They are Salmon Arm, Anstey Arm, Seymour Arm, and the main Shuswap Lake Arm. Shuswap Lake is named after the Shuswap First Nations – the Secwepemc. Today, the following first nations bands live in the area: Adams Lake Band, Neskonlith Band, Spallumcheen Band, and Little Shuswap Band. Salmon Arm is a small city with big ideas, whose combination of beauty and forward thinking attracts explorers, entrepreneurs and families of all ages. If you’re seeking a safe, welcoming place that’s open to innovative ways to build a life, Salmon Arm is that place. In a spectacular setting, mid-way between Vancouver and Calgary, with a population of 17,706, it is ideally situated on key transportation crossroads. As the largest community within the Columbia Shuswap Regional District, Salmon Arm is the business service centre for the surrounding area and has a market population of close to 45,000. With a beautiful, four-season climate, excellent access to healthcare, education and sports and recreation, Salmon Arm offers authentic community, various activities, real prosperity, and true opportunity
Average high temp in summer: 26.5º (July)
Average low temp in winter: -4.9º (December) -6.6 (January)
Rainfall: 469 mm
Snowfall: 184 cm
Sunshine: 1802 hours
Get outside and enjoy the sunshine.
After spending more time at home than ever before, most of us are eager to get outside and enjoy the sunshine this spring. But, unless you’ve been carefully tending to your yard, there’s a good chance those outdoor spaces could use some TLC.
As it turns out, the key to creating a truly relaxing backyard oasis lies in delighting the five senses, and nearly any homeowner can partake. From the smell of jasmine to the soft glow of string lights, here’s how to level up your backyard this spring.
Of course, you can’t truly relax when the neighbours are too close for comfort. Before tackling anything else, make a point to establish some privacy.
You may not want an extra-tall privacy fence all along with the property, but creating even just a few closed-off nooks promotes relaxation. Consider curtains, climbing plants, trellises, hedges, planters, and more (Better Homes and Gardens, 2021) to section off your space, prevent prying eyes and create a perfectly calm environment. Goodbye, looky-loos!
Set up seating
No outdoor space is complete without a functional seating area. Outdoor daybeds invite lounging, while a picnic table would be perfect for entertaining.
If you’re feeling creative, don’t shy away from swings, hammocks and other unique options, either. Whatever your taste, just ensure plenty of comfortable seating is well within reach.
Tend to the garden
Greenery can make or break an outdoor space. In fact, plants have been shown to have a therapeutic effect, promoting feelings of calmness and cutting down on stress (Forbes, 2020). For added fun, incorporate plants with sweet-smelling flowers, vibrant colours or unique shapes.
Let there be light
While lighting may initially seem a bit insignificant, when used correctly, it can truly transform a space. For example, warm light is often seen as calming and inviting, while cool light feels more invigorating.
Consider hanging string lights over the seating area to add ambiance, or place torches throughout the yard if lawn games are on the agenda. Either way, good lighting (Country Living 2021) ensures your outdoor oasis is fully functional, even after dark.
Install a water feature
Did you know that the sound of running water (Smithsonian, 2021) can actually boost health outcomes and promote feelings of tranquillity? Unless you’re lucky enough to live right on the beach, you may need to do some legwork to incorporate this element of relaxation.
Installations can be as simple as a birdbath or as complex as a full-on fountain. Whatever your preference, a water feature is sure to make a splash in your backyard oasis.
Consider a sound system
If running water isn’t quite cutting it, a soothing playlist might. Pick up a simple Bluetooth speaker or invest in an outdoor speaker system (HGTV). Then, take a note from your favourite day spa and put on something soft and soothing.
Imagine yourself lounging in a hammock under bistro lights, flowering perennials nearby… Now, grab a shovel and make it a reality! Your backyard oasis is waiting.
Raise the discussion of booming real estate in Canada, and the Vancouver, BC housing market will likely be mentioned more than once. While the city has maintained a strong market over the last few decades, another story worth mentioning is the performance of the province as a whole.
In mid-2020, Canadian real estate markets from coast to coast experienced a surge in demand that caused inventory to fall below historical levels. Meantime, prices experienced continuous increases month-over-month, pushing the entire BC housing market into red-hot seller’s territory.
With an influx of new residents coming from overseas and other Canadian provinces, affordability in BC is moving further out of reach. Homes have been flying off the market and prices have been rising well beyond the national average, and there doesn’t seem to be any sign of slowing as we welcome the new year.
British Columbia Closing 2021 Strong
While numbers may be decreasing in comparison to the scorching sales of October 2020, October 2021 was still a strong one. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) tallied residential unit sales of 9,593. With a record low number of listings on the market, the average residential price in the province rose 18.9 percent year-over-year, to $964,777. This helped push the total sales volume to a whopping $9.3 billion for the month.
With a 40-per-cent decline in active residential listings at the end of October compared to 2020, the BC real estate market continues to be a hot seller’s market. “The story across the province continues to be the record low number of listings,” said BCREA Chief Economist Brendon Ogmundson. “Rising mortgage rates should start to temper sales activity next year, but even with a moderation in demand it will take quite some time for the inventory of homes to return to a healthy level.”
Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was up 69.7 percent to $99.6 billion year-over-year. Unit sales were up 42.8 percent to 108,798 units, while the average MLS® residential price was up 18.8 percent to $915,833. With strong numbers in the first month of the 2021’s last quarter, it is anticipated that the market will continue to burn strong as 2021 comes to a close.
BC Market to Continue Simmering into 2022
While things may appear to be slightly cooling in the British Columbia housing market, we aren’t out of the woods just yet. As 2022 inches closer, industry observers expect to see real estate metrics continue strong in the new year.
With the MLS residential sales in BC anticipated to rise to 121,450 units by the end of the year – a 29-per-cent increase over the 94,013 unit sales in 2020 – there could be a welcomed cooling off at the beginning of the new year. According to Ogmundson, “After a frenzied start to the year, activity in BC housing markets has settled back to a level that is broadly in line with long-run trends. The strength of the first half of this year has sales on track to easily break the previous record for annual sales.”
The Board said that MLS residential sales will fall about 15 percent, down to 102,750 units for the entirety of 2022, potentially giving the market some time to relax and moderate. “While we do not anticipate a repeat of the record-setting market of 2021, we do expect housing market activity to remain vigorous in 2022,” added Ogmundson.
With annual sales projected to remain above average, listings are not anticipated to keep pace with demand, which will likely further push the average home price in BC upward approximately three percent compared to 2021. While an increase in price is generally not favourable for buyers, the slight increase is more digestible than the 17-per-cent increase experienced over the course of 2021.
Source: British Columbia Real Estate Association
BC Assessment notes top-priced single-family home in Salmon Arm is valued at 2,528,000
If your Salmon Arm home was assessed around the $400,000 mark in 2020, it’s likely assessed at well over half a million dollars now.
According to BC Assessment, a ‘typical’ Salmon Arm single-family house assessed at $426,000 in 2021, based on its potential selling price on July 1, 2020, would be assessed in 2022 at $574,000, an increase of 34 percent.
In Sicamous, while the potential selling prices are lower, the increase in assessed value is slightly higher.
BC Assessment states that a ‘typical’ Sicamous single-family house assessed at $318,000 in 2021 would be assessed in 2022 at $450,000, a 38 percent increase. The 2022 assessment is based on the potential selling price of the home on July 1, 2021.
In Chase, a ‘typical’ $309,000 home in the 2021 assessment would increase in assessed value in 2022 by 36 percent to $427,000.
Salmon Arm, Sicamous and Chase are listed by BC Assessment in the Thompson Okanagan region. Throughout the region, many communities are seeing increases of more than 30 percent.
Assessor Tracy Wall pointed out that although increases are very high for the region, a number of residents have been affected by wildfires and floods.
“We really really want them to come to our office and speak to our appraiser, so we have accurate information for their assessment,” she said.
Wall recommended that people go to the BC Assessment website at: www.bcassessment.ca/Property/AssessmentSearch where they can see their assessment.
The assessment increase for strata residential properties such as condos and townhouses in the Thompson Okanagan region is lower than the increase for single-family houses, running in the 20 to 25 percent mark.
An increased assessment does not necessarily mean a homeowner’s taxes will increase. It’s how your assessment changes relative to the average change in your community that matters. For instance, if the change to your property value is higher than the average change for your property class, your taxes will likely increase.
If you have concerns or questions about your assessment, you’re asked to call your regional assessment office as soon as possible in January.
As for assessed values, the highest out of the 30 communities listed in Lake Country at $662,000 in the 2021 assessment increasing to $886,000 in 2022. Sun Peaks is actually higher, listed at $921,000 in the 2021 assessed value jumping 25 percent to $1,146,000 in the 2022 assessment.
The lowest typical price listed in the Thompson Okanagan region for a single-family house by BC Assessment goes to Clinton.
The 2021 assessment was for $155,000, which rose by 17 percent to the 2022 assessment of $176,000.
BC Assessment also keeps track of the top 25 valued properties in communities.
In Salmon Arm, the top 25 prices listed by BC Assessment range from $1.6 million to $2.5 million.
At the top is a single-family home at 981 Harbourfront Dr. NE priced at $2,528,000. There are only four single-family homes listed in the top 25; the rest are described as acreages.
Sources: Salmon Arm Observer
Let’s talk about how to present and price your house in a seller’s market. A seller’s market means that there is less inventory than buyers. The upside for sellers is that you can usually sell your house quicker and for more money than in a buyer’s market. BUT you must be careful, if you don’t present your house properly or if you overprice it and it sits too long, it becomes a stinky listing way faster than it would in another kind of market. Buyers begin to wonder if there is something wrong with it much sooner than they would’ve if it had been a buyer’s market.
With that being said, this is a great time to sell houses that might not be optimal for people in the past. For example, houses with odd floor plans, located on busier streets, have smaller yards, backing light industrial etc. Because there is less inventory, buyers are somewhat willing to make concessions on features that they may not have had in the past. What you don’t want to do is miss the boat on cleaning, repairs and staging. Be sure that your house is just as presentable as it would be in a buyer’s market. You want your house to be in great repair and be clean, fresh and in a state that people can envision themselves there… immediately. Buyers have to decide fast. If they can’t imagine themselves in your home right away, they will quickly move on!
Sources: Heather Fritz
When we move from one residence to another, we often get so caught up in the forward thrust of where we are going that we forget to properly say goodbye to the home we are leaving behind. Yet saying goodbye is an important part of moving forward. It gives us a sense of completion so that we are able to fully inhabit our new space, having left nothing of ourselves in the old one. In this way, we honour the space that has held and nurtured us. At the same time, we cleanse it and empty it of our energy so that the new residents can make the space theirs.
Plan a walk through your home that begins and ends at the front door. Ideally, you will be alone or accompanied only by a person who shared the space with you. Prepare yourself mentally to be as present as you can during this process. As you enter the house, you might say, “I have come to thank you for being my home and to say goodbye.” You might touch the walls with your hands as you move through the house, or you might burn sage as an offering, as well as an energy cleanser. Spend some time in each room expressing your gratitude and gathering or releasing any lingering energy from the room. As you do this, you are freeing your home to embrace its new occupants. Remember to visit your outside spaces as well. Plants are especially sensitive to the energy around them and will appreciate your consideration.
As you make your way back to the front door, know that you have completed your final journey through your home and that you have honoured and blessed it with this ritual of farewell. As you close and lock the door behind you, say one last goodbye. Now you can walk freely into your future and fully inhabit the new spaces that will keep you safe and warm.
Sources: Daily Oms
Moving can be a challenge for anyone at any age, but it can be even more stressful for kids who aren’t part of the decision-making process. Whether your children are toddlers or teenagers, there are always additional challenges to moving when kids are involved.
So, while uprooting a teenager or switching your child’s school is often difficult, moving a toddler has its own set of challenges. It’s important to let your child know that they’re not leaving their bed and toys behind, and that you will all be there together as a family when you move into your new home. The more they understand this, the easier it will be for them to accept this change in their life.
Helping a toddler deal with change is all about validating their fears and feelings, listening to them, and laying out expectations for them in ways that they can understand. Make your message about this change positive and clear, and reinforce it many times as you lead up to the move.
Is Moving Good for Kids?
We know that moving is tough for children, but can it have a positive effect on them too? Of course it can!
Staying in one house for your whole childhood is not the only way to create stability. Empowering your toddler by offering simple choices and talking to them about the moving process allows you to lessen their anxiety and remind them that you are a constant in their life.
Moving teaches your child important lessons, especially about how to deal with change. How well they learn that lesson is partly determined by your child’s personality and partly by how you handle the situation. It’s up to you to create calm in the middle of a storm, and to showcase the attitude you want your child to adopt. You can lead by example.
Your toddler will experience big emotions with a move: excitement, anxiety, fear. This is an opportunity for you to validate those emotions and teach them how to handle them. Accept their emotions without judgement, listen to them, and watch for ways they are communicating physically. By normalizing these big emotions, you are helping your child build self-esteem and hearty emotional health.
Moving with a Toddler Checklist
Moving is exciting and exhausting, but also manageable with the right plan. Here’s an easy-to-reference checklist to keep you on track:
Moving can bring a family closer and it will show you how your toddler deals with stress. Your child will learn that no matter what changes around them you are still a constant in their life. By being patient and really paying attention to your child’s needs you can set them up for success in your new home and in their future.
Before the weather grows colder, it’s important to prepare for the winter months to prevent costly damage.
Below are the fall preventative home maintenance steps that every homeowner should follow.
Gutters and Downspouts
Windows and Doors
Chimney and Fireplace
Landscape and Yard work
Great neighborhoods and Good schools
As families gear up to send the kids back to school, they’re busier than ever.
Maybe you have relocated to the Shuswap over the summer, in which case WELCOME! Or maybe your family is growing, and you are looking into moving to find the right home, in the right location, near the right school.
A new house can mean more space, great neighborhoods, and good schools.
Follow these tips to find your dream home near the right school:
Our School District
North Okanagan-Shuswap School District No. 83 is an area of 8,500 square kilometers located around the Shuswap Lake and North Okanagan. The school district encompasses the distinct communities of Malakwa, Sicamous, Grindrod, Enderby, Ashton Creek, Kingfisher, Armstrong, Spallumcheen, Falkland, Ranchero/Deep Creek, Silver Creek, Salmon Arm, Tappen, Sorrento, Celista, and Seymour Arm. The school district includes four First Nations bands. Comprehensive local education agreements and strong ties have been developed with the bands, which have resulted in both academic and cultural benefits. Because of the vast area the district has 16 community elementary schools, three middle schools and four secondary schools, and an educational outreach program.
The District Education Support Centre (DESC) is located at 341 Shuswap St. SW in Salmon Arm. The office number is (250) 832-2157.
Not sure which school your child will attend? Contact the Operations department, 250 832-9415. You can also use this number for information regarding bus routes.
In addition to the Public-School District, there is of course the option of Private schools as well. In Salmon Arm we have, Kings Christian School- http://www.kingschristianschool.com/
Thinking about college? Salmon Arm also boosts an Okanagan College Campus, inhttp://www.okanagan.bc.ca/Programs/Areas_of_Study/International_Education/Location/Salmon_Arm_Campus.html
According to Realtor.com, 60% of buyers say schools affect their decision. I hope you find this information as a helpful guide in finding the right home, in the right location, near the right school.
If the summer heat is turning your house into an oven and causing the air conditioning bill to go through the roof, here are a few quick and affordable tips to help you keep cool and save energy.
Close Blinds and Curtains
Install Cool Lighting
Repair Windows and Doors
Use Fans for Cooling
Clean Air Conditioner Filters
Put Off Chores
Use Less Hot Water
These are only a few of the many strategies for keeping your house cool in the summer. Put some of these home improvements to your to-do list for relief in years to come.