UBC offers a full range of housing options in five distinct neighbourhoods to provide a unique opportunity to live, work and learn in a truly integrated campus community.
 

 

The new 2015-2016 school year is whisper close, and that means students from all over the world will soon be flocking to their UBC real estate properties to get ready for it. Move-in time can get quite hectic, especially if this year will be your first time living outside of the dorms or outside of your parent’s house.

To cut through the confusion and gear you for a successful semester, here are three tips to have you prepared for move-in day:

 

Stick with the Bare Essentials

While it may be tempting to haul your king-size four-poster bed, sleeper couch, 52 inch flat-screen TV or 100 box vinyl album collection with you to your pad, you may find that the trouble is far more than it is worth. Keep in mind that in most situations, you are just going to have to move these large, cumbersome objects out of your home in one to three years.

Scale back your belongings to make your move-in more manageable, especially if this is going to be your first official place. Take only as much clothing, furniture and personal effects as you think you will use on a weekly if not daily basis. Store everything else at your parent’s house or the next most convenient place, at least until you get settled.

Once you have a better idea of your needs and how you will stay organized, you can then worry about adding familiar objects back into your life. Remember that you can always buy furniture here, too. There is an IKEA in Richmond, after all.

 

Avoid Paying for Moving Boxes

Some boxes are purpose-made for carrying special items like heavy books or delicate electronics. For all other items, anything with six sides will do. You can ask your local liquor store or pharmacy when they typically unload supply trucks for a source of free boxes they will gladly hand over.

Another way to cut down on moving supply expenses is to utilize the furniture and other items you will already be carrying with you. Laundry hampers, dressers, backpacks, suitcases, gym bags and trunks can all be stuffed with items instead of carried empty. You can also use your own T-shirts and socks to wrap fragiles rather than paying money for packing materials.

 

Prioritize from the Moment You Move In

We know that the last thing you will want to do after a tiring, stressful day of moving is to add cleaning on top of that, but trust us when we recommend that you take the time to tidy up before you begin unloading boxes.

You should ideally sweep the floors and dust off the surfaces in your bedroom, your kitchen and your bathroom before finally taking a well-deserved rest. This minimal amount of added effort ensures that your home will feel much more comfortable when you finally lay down to sleep or wake up the next morning.

Also remember to pack a first-night “survival kit” in a backpack or easy-to-access container filled with toiletries, clean sheets and a change of clothes to minimize your struggle to find items once you are ready to get settled for the night.

We hope that these tips have given you insight and confidence into the move-in process, whether this will be your first or hundredth time unpacking in a UBC home. If the idea of packing up again come the summer stresses you out, consider financing a UBC property through a family member so that you can own the place you live in and rent it out at once you graduate. Less move-ins and earning equity is better than throwing rent money down a hole, after all.

Learn more about the UBC community by reading our helpful blog or take a look at our UBC property listings to find a home worth investing in.

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Investing in rental properties for UBC students is an excellent way to generate income while also becoming a part of our passionate and energetic community. There are many properties both within the UBC campus and its surrounding area that would be ideal for students to rent while they complete their studies.

The only question becomes how to reach students who are looking for a home. Flyers pinned to notice boards do not have quite the same impact that they used to, after all. Instead, consider leveraging social media as a way to get your properties noticed and ensure that they have consistent renters year after year. Here are some ways to accomplish this goal:

 

Take Great Pictures

Your first step in selling the product you offer — in this case rental properties — is to let buyers know what they are getting. Attractive photos entice users to click on the first picture and then look through the information you have, increasing their interest in signing a lease. Some general tips on taking great property photos include:

  • Get the entire property exterior inside the frame using a wide-angle lens or similar technique. Leave out neighboring houses unless you want additional photos emphasizing the area’s qualities.
  • Take your exterior photos in the brightest daylight possible. Borrow an umbrella lamp for interior photos.
  • Give students a “tour” of the home by photographing rooms in succession while describing how the layout flows from one area to the next
  • Include very specific information about rent amount, number of rooms/baths, lease terms and other important facts in the album description

 

Post Consistently

Your most active time of the year will likely be in the summer when the new semester is about to start, but that is not the only time of year people think about houses. Post about your listings six or more months before they become available for lease. You will generate long-term attention and also boost your visibility by maintaining engagement throughout the year as opposed to just a few months.

 

Tap Your Friends List

Sites like Facebook have excellent paid, targeted marketing options, but using your friends to share is 100 percent free and creates a nice organic reach baseline. Ask anyone in the UBC or Vancouver community if they would share your listing photos and information just in case someone they know may need a place to rent.

 

Mix Up Your Content

Just blasting your wall with home listings is not always the best way to maintain engagement. Try to find interesting posts about the local area or articles about maintaining a home so that young students can get excited about the idea of living near UBC, not just the home they will be living in.

 

Following these guidelines should help you get more reach and increase the likelihood that people will be enquiring about your properties long before the new school year starts. To find beautiful UBC homes that any student would clamor to rent, visit our UBC real estate listings page.

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Carpeting is a home finish that is excellent at hiding its sordid history. Underneath the seemingly intact pile often lurks unspeakable foulness. Knowing when this point occurs often takes guesswork and a realistic consideration of the hardships that carpet has gone through.

Here are some factors to consider when deciding whether to replace your carpet, especially before a home sale:

 

Age

Most manufacturers advise replacing carpet after eight to 10 years. At that point, the pile loses its stiffness, and many of the characteristics that gave the carpet its initial appeal have faded. Carpets that have endured a longer life will show more stains, absorb more smells and be more prone to wear or damage than newer ones. If you have had your carpet for close to a decade, it is likely time to let it go.

 

Stains

Staining in carpets are usually cumulative. New carpet can often be deep-cleaned to remove surface stains, but over time spills are able to penetrate deeper. They can often reach the carpet’s backing and soak into the cushioning underneath, known as the underlay.

Age will be a large determining factor in staining, but so will the amount of incidents and how long they remained before they were cleaned. If your carpet has been tie-dyed but not on purpose, it will likely impact your home’s appeal when a buyer comes viewing.

 

Smell

Like stains, smells are cumulative in carpet. Pet hair, food, spills and other debris gradually leave their mark and begin to permeate the fabrics. These smells can be especially noticeable if there has been a fresh spill or if the weather is particularly humid.

Your best bet is to remove a stinky carpet along with its soiled underlay rather than trying to steam clean it in vain yet another time. Considering smell is a good indication of allergens lurking within the materials, your sinuses and lungs will be glad you made the choice.

 

Comfort and Style

Carpeting gradually loses its shape over time, becoming less plush and more matted. Likewise, the underlay will lose its spring to feel flat rather than soft. A new carpet can restore the sumptuous appeal of a covered floor and invite barefoot walks or impromptu naps. They can also add value, whereas an unsightly carpet can take value away.

Also consider how well your carpet works into the overall decor. You may want a new color or pattern, or you may want to replace carpeting with hardwood flooring. Hardwood floors are a significant investment, but they are one of the home features that buyers are willing to pay more for, according to USA Today.

No matter what you decide, make sure that your home’s flooring can be something you will be proud of rather than something you try to gloss over when potential buyers come visiting. For more advice on adding value and appeal to your UBC real estate property, visit our buyers page.

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