<![CDATA[Trumpeter Pointe - Blog]]>Mon, 26 Mar 2018 03:16:33 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[How to Choose a Neighborhood]]>Mon, 12 Mar 2018 22:24:01 GMThttp://trumpeterpointe.ca/blog/how-to-choose-a-neighborhoodIf houses are like spouses, a neighborhood is like the extended family. But while you can have a good marriage and still dread holidays with the in-laws, you'll never love a house if you don't like your neighborhood.

How can you choose the right community? Become a neighborhood detective. Figure out what you're looking for, do research and find a neighborhood that fits your description. You don't even have to wear a trench coat -- but it probably wouldn't hurt.

Before you start scrutinizing neighborhoods, turn the magnifying glass back on yourself.

Step 1: Profile Your Perfect Neighborhood

Think about what you're really looking for in a new neighborhood. Remember, you'll probably have to make compromises, so put the "must-haves" at the top and the "would- like-to-haves" at the bottom. Not sure what fits your lifestyle? Here's a list of 12 types of neighborhoods to get you started.

Here are some things to consider:

Do you have children or are you planning to have children anytime soon? Parents know that the first thing to do when looking at a neighborhood is to research the school system. Even if you're single, living in an area with a much sought-after school system raises your property value. If you have kids, you'll also want to live close to parks and community centers.

What type of home do you want? Are you interested in a single-family home or an apartment, townhouse or co-op? Read more about the different types of homes.

How far are you willing to commute? Do you plan to drive, walk or take mass transit to work? Do you have a car or would you be willing to get one?

Do you want to be in a historic neighborhood or a new development? Historic neighborhoods have tons of character, but often require lots of repair work and are governed by community associations with strict standards. Newer developments have more modern features, but are typically far from the city center. Read more about the different types of architecture styles.

What is your current community lacking? If you're currently landlocked, but have always wanted to live on the waterfront, put that at the top of your list. If you're a coffee junkie, having a Starbucks down the street may be a dream come true.

Do you want to be able to go places on foot? Would you like to be within walking distance of shops, restaurants and bars? Or would you be willing to drive to nearby businesses?

Think about what you don't want in a neighborhood, too. If you can't stand late-night noise, you'll probably want to steer clear of the college area or an area with a lively bar scene.
 
Step 2: Zero In on the Area

If you're moving within the same city, you may already know the various neighborhoods. Choose the ones that best match your list of wants. If you're moving to a new city, you'll have to do more research. Start by picking a part of town to search in. For instance, if your job is on the west side of town, start there. In a really large city, narrow it down to a few-block radius, say, SoHo in New York City. This will make your search more focused.

Step 3: Get the Suspects
With your area of the city in mind, start digging up information. Find interesting neighborhoods online, ask local real estate agents for recommendations and compile all the background information you can, including:

School information: Look into the local public and private elementary, junior and high schools, as well as daycare programs.

Crime statistics: Most real estate sites have statistics that tell you how the zip code's crime rates measure up to the national average. If you want specifics, call the local police station.

Parks and recreation: How far is it to the closest park or recreation center?

Neighborhood associations: Does the community you're looking at have one, and, if so, are there lawn or construction restrictions? Is there a yearly fee?

Tourist attractions: Get a guidebook or check out the convention and tourism bureau's Web site to see all the city has to offer.
 

Step 4: Find the Clues
Once you've done the background research, visit neighborhoods that made the preliminary grade in person. There's no better way to paint a real picture of life in the neighborhood. Use your senses to get a complete picture of the prospective community.

Sights:
Remember your first impression. What do you notice first about the neighborhood? Do the streets have curb appeal? Are the houses well-maintained? Do the shops and restaurants look hip and inviting? You'll want to feel good about where you call home, and impress buyers when you're ready to move on.

Visualize yourself in the neighborhood. Think of your daily routine. If you can't live without a morning latte, is there a coffee shop nearby? Where will you walk your dog or go jogging? You'll enjoy the neighborhood more if it's easy to do what you like.

Observe the neighborhood at different times of the day. Driving through will help you get a snapshot of life in the community -- good and bad. Do the roads turn into a parking lot after school or during rush hour? Are people using grills or decks in the evening? Are neighbors and kids socializing or do people keep to themselves? Are the streets well-lit at night? These visual clues can help you decide if you'll fit in.

Make sure the local schools make the grade. Even if you don't have kids, pay a visit to the nearby schools. High ratings are great, but seeing the buildings is much more telling. It will be easier to sell your house later if the schools are nice.

Look for warning signs. Be on the lookout for signs that the neighborhood is in trouble. Do you see abandoned buildings or vandalism? Are there a lot of "For Sale" signs or rentals? If the community goes downhill, so does your house's value.

Sounds:
Stop and listen. Bird and nature sounds are generally pleasant, but what about noise from the highway, airport, hospital, train tracks or nearby clubs and bars? It's not very relaxing to listen to trains screech by during your morning coffee -- especially not every morning.

Talk to your future neighbors. Ask how they like the area, and get the dirt on anything they don't like about the place. What do they want to change? What's their favorite place to hang out? If they're rude to you, they probably wouldn't be good neighbors anyway.

Talk to more people. You'll get the best information from regular people who aren't trying to make a sale. (Read: not your real estate agent.) Hit up your waiter for information when you're checking out the local food, or ask a gas station attendant to spill what they know about your chosen neighborhood.

Smells:

Specifically, are there any? You can't experience unpleasant smells on the Internet and they're not advertised in tourism brochures, but they can certainly affect your decision to live in an area. Take a big whiff of the air, and ask around if you smell any fishy (or just bad) odors.

Taste:
No, I'm not asking you to lick your prospective home's mailbox. But ask yourself if the neighborhood matches your taste in a living environment -- and if it meets your criteria. Just because it's a nice neighborhood doesn't mean it's the one for you. If the neighborhood meets your list but still feels wrong, search out another area. Trust your gut feeling -- after all, you're the one who has to live there.
 
Step 5: Close the Case
You've chosen your neighborhood. Now for the hard part: finding a house you love. Luckily, you've narrowed it down to a few streets. Now, make sure to:

Find out how much house you can afford. The amount of money a lender offers you is often more than you can truly afford to pay. Use FrontDoor's handy mortgage calculator to add all your current debts and see how much you can afford. You don't want to be stuck eating ramen noodles for the next 15 to 30 years.

Compare your loan options. Ask yourself these basic questions to find out what mortgage is right for you. Decide between fixed and adjustable rate mortgages by using an online tool to see which loan term is best for you.

Draw up your vision of home. It worked for your neighborhood -- now think about what you want in a home. Write your own vision of home and stick to it while you're house hunting.]]>
<![CDATA[Quamichan Inn..Gone!]]>Mon, 30 May 2016 20:11:46 GMThttp://trumpeterpointe.ca/blog/quamichan-inngoneThe 105-year-old Quamichan Inn has been destroyed by fire.
The Tudor-style building at 1478 Maple Bay Rd. in Duncan, which housed a restaurant and a bed-and-breakfast, was gutted by a fire overnight Friday May 27/2016.

Maple Bay deputy fire chief Kelly Paddle said the inn was fully engulfed by flames shortly after the department arrived at 11:20 p.m. Friday.

Forty firefighters from Maple Bay and North Cowichan’s south end fire hall battled the blaze. Paddle said the fire was extinguished at 6 a.m. Saturday.

“The fire was in the roof, and it was completely engulfed 15 to 20 minutes later,” he said, noting the old timber and open-frame construction contributed to the speed with which the fire spread.
“No one was going inside due to the hazards of falling debris.”

There is little left of the building, as the fire department had to bring in an excavator to expose final hot spots Saturday morning, he said.
“It’s a big loss,” Paddle said. “That place has been around a long time and a lot of people have had their weddings and anniversaries celebrated there. It’s been a very important place to the community.”

Paddle said the cause of the blaze is under investigation, but it does not appear to be suspicious.
The inn, built in 1911 as a private home, was converted into a country inn after Archie and Sheila Owen bought it in 1969. It is now owned by a group of local businessmen.-
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<![CDATA[Quamichan lake island donated]]>Mon, 29 Feb 2016 21:06:40 GMThttp://trumpeterpointe.ca/blog/quamichan-lake-island-donatedRainbow Island is now safe in the hands of the Cowichan Land Trust.Chemainus naturalist Carol Milo donated the island in Quamichan Lake to the Land Trust, which has made a commitment to protect the island in its natural state for the benefit of current and future generations of all life.
“This is a wonderful example of someone valuing nature for itself and not for human use,” Land Trust president Jim Ayers said.
Milo purchased Rainbow Island from Rev. Dr. John Sandys-Wunsch, a retired Anglican priest and professor of theology who lived in Victoria. Sandys-Wunsch, who grew up on Maple Bay Road and went to high school in Duncan, frequently rowed in Quamichan Lake. In 1956, he saw a “for sale” sign on the island and bought it for $20. Aside from the occasional visit, he never did anything with the island. Sandys-Wunsch died last September at the age of 79.

Rainbow Island is home to many birds and animals. Last summer, Milo and Land Trust workers put nesting boxes on the island for purple martins. Joining the Land Trust in protecting the island are the Quamichan Stewardship Society and the Municipality of North Cowichan. “I hope this donation will complement the work of the Quamichan Stewards in protecting and restoring the health of the lake,” Milo said.
The Cowichan Land Trust celebrated its 20th anniversary last year. In that time, it has worked to protect the Cowichan Valley through education, land acquisition, conservation covenants (like the one with North Cowichan and the Quamichan Stewards to manage Rainbow Island) and community stewardship projects.

Other land-acquisition projects the Land Trust has been involved in include the Cowichan Garry Oak Preserve, the Holland Creek Trail Corridor in Ladysmith, and Sansum Point Regional Park.

Educational activities include landowner contact programs, the Watershed Warriors, support for Streamkeeper programs, and the creation of the Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre. Current community programs include the Friends of Cowichan Creeks project and the Marvelous Marshes wetland project.
For more information about the Cowichan Land Trust or to get involved, visit www.cowichanlandtrust.ca or call 250-746-0227.

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<![CDATA[Congratulations]]>Wed, 01 Jul 2015 20:40:33 GMThttp://trumpeterpointe.ca/blog/congratulations
Nicon Developments Limited was awarded the 2015 CHBA-VI VIBE Award for the "Residential Community of the Year" for Trumpeter Pointe.
Check out all the winners here: CHBA-VI VIBE AWARDS
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<![CDATA[Garage Sale Season is Starting]]>Mon, 24 Mar 2014 20:56:49 GMThttp://trumpeterpointe.ca/blog/garage-sale-season-is-startingGarage Sale
SEVEN EASY STEPS TO ASSURE A SUCCESSFUL GARAGE SALE

1. Create an inventory sheet of what you’re selling, and list the price of each item in case the tag is missing.

2. Price it right. Although you want to price your items slightly higher to account for haggling, don’t price them so high that you can’t sell them. Remember, shoppers expect bargains.

3. Sell with others. Recruit your neighbours, family and friends to sell their stuff with yours. Bigger garage sales often attract more people.

4. Get your items ready to sell. Clean your sale items, and make sure that they’re in good shape. If you’re selling electronics, make sure they’re in good working order, and have the cords attached.

5. Set the date and place for your sale. Saturday is the best day of the week to hold your garage sale. Choose a date a few weeks in advance to give you time to prepare, and choose an alternate date as well in case of bad weather.

6. Advertise your garage sale in your local newspaper, on Kijiji and UsedEverywhere, and with signs on your local roads. Choose bright coloured poster board or cardboard, and write the details of your sale in large black letters that drivers can see from their vehicles. Put up six to eight signs a few days before your sale to improve the chances of shoppers stopping by.

7. Set up an hour or two early on the morning of the sale. Experienced shoppers will show up at the posted time so that they can score the best deals. So if you plan to open your sale at 7 a.m. (the best time of day to do so), then start setting up around 5 or 6 a.m. If you’re like most people, you probably have items in the attic, basement, garage and closets that you don’t need, use and maybe even forgot that you had. Garage sales allow you to make space in your home while making money.

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<![CDATA[west coast winters]]>Thu, 06 Feb 2014 18:50:36 GMThttp://trumpeterpointe.ca/blog/west-coast-wintersPicture
Whether you are curled up in front of the fireplace or out skiing the local hills, winter on the west coast can be exciting.
As the weather here on the west coast is not like any other place in the world, you can expect to have mild temperatures and little snow at the lower altitudes.
We usually see one or two snowfalls each winter and normally the snow doesn't last more than a day or two. Higher altitudes can see a lot more snow and it can last for months. We do see more than our share of rain, but at least you don't have to shovel it.

Winter Gardening
Winter gardening is summer planting for winter harvest.
In our mild Coastal climate we can grow some vegetables all winter without protection. You can eat these plants throughout the winter, so they need to be full size by about Halloween. Until Valentines Day, plants grow very slowly and do not re-grow after harvest as they might in the summer. The greatest challenges are rain, low light levels and temperature swings.

Overwintering is summer planting for spring harvest.
This is a different concept from winter gardening. Overwintered plants go into the cold season as "teenagers," waiting for the lengthening days of spring to finish growing. Certain varieties of onions, garlic, cauliflower and sprouting broccoli need this extra season to develop fully.

Typically, overwintered vegetables need to have some growth achieved before winter frosts—but they keep growing without being covered. In the early Spring, their growth rates speed up, and they are ready to be picked.

With some planning, overwintered crops can be combined with winter gardening and regular spring/summer gardening to provide fresh vegetables all 12 months of the year.

Winter Storm & Surf Watching
Thundering surf, huge rolling swells, miles of secluded beaches, gulls floating on the ocean breezes ... just you ... experiencing heaven on earth. During late fall and winter the West Coast takes on a new life ... the ocean captures raw energy and movement begins ... The air becomes cool and a mystical fog plays over the towering forest and restless sea.

Some say it is the finest time to experience this magical coast, to spend time alone, taking time to sit on a log and gaze across shimmering waters that blend into an endless blue sky.

Looking for adventure ... The West Coast of Vancouver Island offers an excellent surf beach, paddle and kite surfing, Bring your kayak or rent locally. Hike for miles, and become one with the exquisite natural environment. Bring your camera for those special storm shots while beach combing the Pacific Ocean.

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<![CDATA[lakefront lots available]]>Thu, 30 Jan 2014 17:14:00 GMThttp://trumpeterpointe.ca/blog/lakefront-lots-available Trumpeter Pointe is an upscale master-planned lakeside real estate development near Maple Bay and Duncan on Vancouver Island.
This 24-acre residential subdivision offers 49 view lots and 17 waterfront lots featuring lake and mountain views, an abundance of green space, parkland, and walking trails.
Both underground-serviced residential building lots and luxurious Built Green new homes are now available. Custom home plans and home construction services from Nicon Developments are also available for residential building lot purchasers.
Nick Woywitka, the developer of the Trumpeter Pointe subdivision, and owner of Nicon, knows the importance of window and deck locations, benefits of vaulted ceilings and expansive glass, and the beauty of indigenous materials for new lakeside homes.
Whether you want to customize existing home plans or create new custom homes plans from start to finish, Nicon has the expertise to guide you through the entire new home construction process at Trumpeter Pointe, making it a stress-free and enjoyable experience.
Check us out!

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<![CDATA[stay safe]]>Mon, 02 Dec 2013 20:25:51 GMThttp://trumpeterpointe.ca/blog/stay-safePicture

Don't forget to make your home safe before you go on that well deserved summer vacation.Here are five things you should do before you leave on that trip.1. Hold Your Mail and newspapers. A pile of unopened mail and unread newspapers announces to a would-be burglar that your home is empty and ready for intruders.
2. Get rid of the Spare Key. If your home is being targeted, the first thing a criminal will look for is a spare key. If you need to leave a key, make sure you leave it with a neighbor and not hiding outside your home.
3. Avoid Social Media. While you are away, avoid posting photos and updates of your activities. This is a perfect invite for an intruder.
4. Trick Potential Intruders. Make it look like someone’s home when you’re out having fun. Here are some ways to outsmart crooks:
  • Time lights and electronics. You can time your lights, television, and other electronics to turn on and off throughout the day. You want your lights to look natural, as if someone’s home. Avoid leaving your lights on the entire time you are gone. This will not only increase your electric bill, but it’s also suspicious, since most people don’t leave lights on all the time when they’re home.
  • Hire a landscaper. If you’re going to be out of town for a week or more, hire someone to mow your lawn and trim your hedges, so it looks like someone’s around and doing the yard work.
  • Have a neighbor park out front. Tell a trustworthy neighbor when you’re going to be out of town,  and ask them to park a car in front of your house to make it look like someone’s home.
  • Ask Neighbors to Keep an Eye Out Friendly neighbors can be an important line of defense against intruders.
If you take precautions before going on vacation, then you can relax instead of worrying about the state of your home while you’re gone. For additional home safety and travel tips, visit SafeWise.com. If you have additional tips for keeping your home safe while on vacation, please share in the comments!

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<![CDATA[summer is here - keeping cool]]>Fri, 28 Jun 2013 19:28:14 GMThttp://trumpeterpointe.ca/blog/summer-is-here-keeping-coolPicture
10 Ways to Keep Cool During the Summer Heat

1. Buy a Popsicle, ice cream, or some other frozen yummy treat.

2. Drink plenty of cool water. During summer, you sweat more, and you have to replenish the water in your body. So drink a nice cold glass of water, and keep a bottle with you always. A tip to stay more cool is fill up a water bottle and put in the freezer for 30 min to an hour, and freeze another to take outdoors and the "iced-water" will last much longer. Don't risk dehydration.

3. Find a friend, and go for a swim, have a water fight, or just dump buckets of water on each other. A weird but fun way is bring a nice cool bucket of water and pour it on your trampoline if you own one and then you created your own slip and slide.

4. Place an ice pack on your wrists. It cools the blood in your veins, and instantly makes you feel cooler. You could also run your pulse under some cold water or just splash some cold water on your face to stay at a desirable temperature

5. Sleep with a sheet when you go to bed, and have a fan directed toward you. You can also dampen your sheets in water and the air blowing from the fan will make you feel refreshed, until it all evaporates.

6. Turn off unnecessary lights, TV, oven, etc. During the day, keep off the majority of your lights, since they produce energy and heat!

7. Shower or bathe frequently in mildly warm, or cold water to stay refreshed.

8. If you have an air conditioner, turn it on. Keep the air filter clean to avoid clogging or fungus may grow there. For best results, close the doors to the rooms that have the air conditioning on. This will trap the cool air in the room, keeping you cooled down.

9. Make sure the setting on the AC is on "high" to move the air through faster and farther. This is not the "colder-to-warmer" settings. That uses very little additional power, but may make a louder "shushing" air sound.

10. Use a portable fan set at the desired setting to keep you at your own comfort zone, too.

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