Did you know that, next to heating and air conditioning, your lights consume most of the energy in your home? In fact, you can lower your electricity bill quickly – and substantially – simply by being smarter about lighting.


First, consider replacing your conventional light bulbs with the energy-saving variety. You've probably seen these at your local home improvement centre. Compact florescent light bulbs, for example, use up to 75% less energy.


Second, lower the wattage in some outlets. Is it necessary to have a 100 watt bulb in the furnace room? Try a 60 watt bulb.


Finally, think before you turn on the lights. Do you really need them on? Perhaps there's an alternative, such as opening a window blind to let in more sunlight.


When you see a new home you like on the market, it's easy to get distracted by all the features you love – the wrap-around backyard deck or the spacious rec room with plenty of space for entertaining. You just need to make sure that in all that excitement you don’t overlook any expensive maintenance issues that could be just around the corner.


Nothing lasts forever. The major components of every home – from the furnace to the roof shingles – need to be replaced eventually. Knowing when such maintenance issues are likely to arise can help you make a smarter decision about the home you're considering.


How do you do that?


When viewing a property, ask for the age of the major components of the home, such as the roof shingles, furnace, air conditioner, water heater, and appliances. Roof shingles may look merely weathered in spots – and you might think they have years of service left – when, in fact, they're due to be replaced in a year.


Also pay close attention to the backyard deck, fencing, flooring, and windows. Do any of those components look aged, worn, and in need of repair or replacement sometime soon?


Finally, don't forget to check the kitchen and bathrooms. Sinks, faucets, bathtubs, showers, and cabinetry have a life-span of about 10-15 years.


Of course, there are things you can't see, such as wiring, plumbing, venting, and other components of a property that may require maintenance soon. That's why it's so important to make any offer to purchase a home conditional on passing an inspection by a qualified home inspector.


Want more ideas on buying the right home for you? Call The Dion-Ivans Real Estate Group today.




Property Type:

21.3% of purchases were by Move-Up Buyers  (up from 19.8% in January)*
19.7% by First Time Buyers  (down from 24.8%)
12.6% purchasing Recreation Property  (up from 11.6%)
9.4% buying Revenue/Investment Property  (down from 13.2%)
7.1% moving from Single Family Home to Strata Unit  (down from 10.7%)
7.1% moving into Retirement Home/Seniors Community  (up from 2.5%)*
6.3% moving from Strata property to Single Family Home  (up from 3.3%)*

* During the month of February, there was an increase in purchases by Move-up Buyers as well as Seniors moving into Retirement Communities, and owners of Strata units moving to Single Family homes.

Buyer Type (Family Dynamic):
30.5% Two Parent Family/Children (down from 32.2% in January) 
25.8% Couple without Children (similar to January) 
18.8% Empty Nesters/Retired (down from 19.8%)
10.9% Single Female (similar to January) 
7.8% Single Male (down from 9.9%)
3.1% Single Parent with Children (up from 2.5%)**

** In February, there was an increase in purchases by Single Parent Families with Children, while other categories remained the same or saw decreases.

Moving From: 
68.2% from Within OMREB Board Area  (down from 61.5% in January)***
11.6% from Alberta (similar to January)
5.4% from Lower Mainland/Vancouver Island  (down from 14.8%)
5.4% from Other Areas in BC  (up from 4.1%)***
3.1% from Eastern Canada/Maritimes (down from 4.1%) 
3.1% from Saskatchewan/Manitoba (up from 2.5%)***
3.1% from Outside Canada  (up from 1.6%)***
0% from NWT/Yukon (same as January)

*** Compared to February, there was more movement from within the Board area and other areas of BC, and migration increased from overseas, but was down significantly from the Lower Mainland/Vancouver Island.


 Information provided by 

If you want more information about market stats or if you are thinking about buying or selling, call the Dion-Ivans Real Estate Group today!!


Shopping for a new home can be intimidating. With so many things to do and think about, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some good tips for making the home hunting process a lot easier and less stressful.


1. Get your mortgage arranged in advance.


You don’t want to find the ideal home on the market, only to face problems arranging a suitable mortgage. You might end up losing the opportunity. So make mortgage arrangements in advance by getting “pre-approved”. Then you can shop for a new home with confidence.


2. Clearly define the home you want and the neighborhood you want to live in.


You can’t view every home that’s on the market. If you try, you’ll burn yourself out! So write down a clear description of the kind of home you want. How many bedrooms? Big kitchen? Pool? And don’t forget the neighborhood. Upscale? Close to downtown? Lots of trees and parks? Urban and close to shopping and theatres? With this information, a good REALTOR® can quickly create a shortlist of properties that meet your criteria.


3. Take good notes. 


After viewing a few homes, you may easily start to forget the details. Was it property #1 that had the large Elm tree in the backyard? Or was that property #4? If you take good notes, you’ll be able to make decisions later on about which homes to shortlist.


4. Get help.


A good REALTOR® can make the home shopping process go quickly and smoothly.


Want more ideas for finding the perfect home? Call the Dion-Ivans Real Estate Group today! Your best source for Kelowna Real Estate Listings. 


Please visit our Open House at 3552 Camelback DR in Kelowna.
OPEN HOUSE: Saturday March 16th from 11:00 to 1:00
If you are looking for exceptional value in the Sunset Ranch Golf Community - look no further!! This Walkout Rancher Home is in mint condition and offers panoramic views of the Golf Course. The main floor has new gleaming hardwood, striking vaulted ceilings, a open concept design and the perfect kitchen for entertaining. The over sized deck is incredible to take in all the views and enjoy the beautiful sunny Okanagan weather! There are 2 beds up with a large master bedroom fit for a king! The basement is bright and beautiful and still offers great views + privacy! There is a huge family room downstairs that will accompany all your friends and family and 1 bedroom that is massive. The lower level deck also offers a great space to relax after a game of golf with friends! This home is sure to impress!! Contact the Dion-Ivans Group for your personal tour!!

Does your home have a lot of personality?


There’s nothing wrong with that.


In fact, you may have pictures on the fireplace mantle showcasing happy family memories over the years… or trophies and other awards in the kids’ bedrooms that represent achievements that make you proud… or a fridge door covered with notes, a calendar and other items that make it a de facto family bulletin board! 


These are all things that help make a house truly a place to call “home”.


But when it comes time to sell, all that personality can work against you.When buyers view your property, they want to visualize themselves living there, not you and your family. 


Have you ever noticed how model homes are often furnished and decorated? All the rooms look beautiful and enticing. They draw you in.Why? Because, although all the rooms in the model home look great, they’re also impersonal. There’s no uncomfortable sense that you’re in a stranger’s home. So you can easily see yourself living there.


And that’s exactly what you should strive for when preparing your house for sale.


You can’t get rid of every personal item. That would be impractical.  But there’s a lot you can do to depersonalize your home. For example, you can:

  • Take down family pictures
  • Clear items from the fridge door
  • Store trophies in a box
  • Remove personal knick knacks and similar items
  • Keep only general titles on a bookshelf and store the rest.

The more easily buyers can see themselves living in your home, the more likely they are to become interested in it and make an offer. 


Want more ideas for making your property look even more appealing to potential buyers? Call the Dion-Ivans Real Estate Group today!!


Please visit our Open House at 1 1811 Ambrosi RD in Kelowna.
OPEN HOUSE: Sat March 9th from 11:00 to 1:00PM
Welcome to the Dwell!! This END UNIT is Big, Beautiful, & Bright - with plenty of windows to let in all the Okanagan Sunshine. This very unique townhome has it all!!! The living space is very carefully thought out + a funky kitchen with stainless appliances & a sit up bar to watch the cook as he chefs up dinner! The second floor has 2 large bedrooms 1 bedroom has its own ensuite and the other bedroom has its own private deck! Now its time to start living the Okanagan Lifestyle as you head upstairs to the HUGE Rooftop Patio. The patio has tons of space for all yours friends while barbecuing and sipping on your favorite drink this will definitely be the place to be! Lastly, this unit has a double attached garage that provides plenty of opportunities for storage, a spot for a gym, studio...possibilities are endless. NO HST!!!! Contact the Dion-Ivans Group for your own personal tour!!

The Bank of Canada announced this morning that it is holding its target for the overnight rate at 1 per cent.  The Bank sees economic growth in Canada picking-up through 2013, as growth in exports and business investment offset a slowdown in household spending and residential construction.  On inflation, the Bank noted that low core and total CPI inflation have been more subdued than the Bank projected, owing to significant excess capacity in the economy. Given low inflation and what the Bank terms a "constructive evolution of imbalances" in the household sector (meaning a lower pace of debt accumulation), the Bank has walked back its previous rate tightening bias stating that, "current levels of monetary stimulus will likely remain appropriate for a period of time, after which some modest withdrawal will likely be required."


Weak economic growth through the second half of last year will likely bleed into the first half of 2013, which means a continuation of subdued inflation of just over 1 per cent. In fact, the outlook for growth and inflation is weak enough that, if the Bank had not spent the last year voicing concern over the perilous state of household finances, a 25 basis point cut in the Bank’s overnight target would be increasingly likely.  Instead, the Bank will put a future rate hike on hold for the foreseeable future, with rates gradually increasing in 2014.


Information provided by


We just listed a new property located at 101 1327 St. Paul ST in Kelowna.
Absolutely stunning condo in the heart of the cultural district. Tons of upgrades: flooring, countertops, and a bathroom that is thoughtfully planned. Designer paint colors with amazing floor to ceiling windows and a huge stamped concrete deck for hosting or taking in the hot summer days. This condo is chic downtown living at it's best!! Call The Dion-Ivans Group today for more information!!

Like heat, water and air conditioning, insurance is a home expense you have some degree of control over. In fact, there are ways to reduce your insurance costs by as much as 20%.


The thing to keep in mind is that insurance companies will often reward you – in the form of lower rates – when you do something to reduce the risk of damage to your property. That's why you can often get a discount when you install smoke detectors on all floors. Other discounts may be available if you get better door locks, an alarm system, upgraded wiring, and so forth.


Contact your insurance company and ask how you can lower your insurance costs. Sometimes just a few minor changes can save you a bundle.


When you’re shopping for a new home, you want to find a property that has all the features and characteristics you want. A large deck surrounded by picturesque landscaping ... a beautiful kitchen with gleaming marble countertops... a cozy finished basement with fireplace....


You should look for the ideal home. You deserve it! But some home buyers make the mistake of becoming fixated on finding the "perfect" property, and passing too quickly on those homes that don't quite measure up.


Why is that a mistake? Because some of those less-than-perfect properties have the potential of becoming your next dream home.


First of all, a home that is lacking some desirable features, such as a finished basement, will probably cost less. Those savings may be more than enough to cover any needed upgrade or renovation.


Secondly, if you look at a home in terms of its potential, rather than the features it happens to have now, there will be more properties available on the market for you to consider.


If you're determined to have a large wrap-around deck for entertaining, for example, don't cross homes that don't have this feature off your list. At least not yet. Instead, view these properties with an eye on potential. Is the backyard big enough to accommodate a large deck? How would a deck like that look if added to this particular property? How much would such a renovation cost?


There's no doubt about it. You want to find a home that has all the features and characteristics you want. If you work with a good REALTOR® like Rob Dion or Lee Ivans, there is a good chance you'll find a property that has most of them.


But keep an open mind. Sometimes a "diamond in the rough" can – with an upgrade or renovation – become a home you'll treasure for years.

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