Day 3 $200 Willows Market Spending Spree

It is Day 3 and the amazing folks at Willows Market are gifting one lucky winner a $200 gift card just in time for Christmas!   Now I really truly love this place!  Whether I need a bouquet of flowers for a client, a gift for a friend or a little something new for my house I can count on finding it here.  The freshest bouquets, the most unique and always changing inventory of gifts, locally made foods, fresh produce its all here!   In the Spring this is the place to go to get your bedding plants or have Nora whip up a hanging basket for you!  She is the master! OH and If you love nautical home décor as much as I do you need to visit the Willows Market! They have the best selection at great prices!

Enter to win the $200 Gift Card here <a href=”http://Enter to Win Here “>

Starting December 1st for 10 days  Deanna will be posting a giveaway from some of here favorite cooperating Businesses.  Anyone can enter via the link on each blog post up until 7pm December 13th.

Winners will be randomly selected via Rafflecopter on Monday December 14 2015.

Follow Willows Market on Facebook here



A few things I am loving these days and wanted to share!

Loving it

#1 The Gathering Place from Cortes Island the best spices around.  Buy their products at the Willows Market.

#2 Local B.C produce including these fresh apples to go with that cinnamon! The Willows Market is loaded with local juicy fruit right now!

#3 Young Living Products.  I could write for hours about the benefits I am quickly discovering.  These oils replace horrible air fresheners, harsh house hold cleaners and even items in your medicine cabinet.

#4 Unique and fun you will find it on Shoppers Row at French Creek Collective

#5 I want everything they post on their facebook page including this whale at Rattan Plus Home and Patio follow with caution at

#6 Home depot Lighting

#7 Ragdolz Clothing I love seeing their facebook and instagram posts.  This jacket had me excited for the cool weather #lumbersexual #plaid #thisjacketwillattractmenwithbeards

A Beautiful Custom Home that You Must See!

This week we are pleased to feature this stunning home on Cambridge Drive. This home was lovingly constructed in 2010 with an abundance of details and extras that you must see for yourself. We are thrilled to showcase this home at a new price of $359,900!

Cambridge Dr 586-12

The living room is oozing with character with real wood beams & a 100-year-old antique mantle surrounding a very efficient Valor Gas Fireplace. The spacious kitchen & dining room feature a moveable island, gas range and a real deal butlers pantry! The master bedroom is huge with a walk in closet and beautiful en suite with heated tile flooring, double sinks and a built-in laundry hamper. Inside the double garage you will find the “man cave” a finished 11×6 room ideal for a hobby room or office. The utility room here is also oversized with tons of storage & counter space. RV Parking, storage shed and low maintenance yard.

Cambridge Collage1

Some other custom extras you will find in this beautiful home include high-end windows with sunscreen protection, built-in speakers in the living room, custom shelving over many of the windows and a covered back deck/bbq area.

Cambridge Collage2

To view a video tour of this stunning one-of-a-kind home click the link here:

Video Tour for 586 Cambridge Drive

For more information about this home you can visit our website at:

Let Us Introduce You To…Vancouver Island Home & Property Service!

We’re BACK!
Did you miss us?
After a fabulous Christmas break and a couple of great family vacations, we are happy to be putting together some spiffy new blog posts just for YOU!
Deanna and I are looking forward to sharing tips about real estate, finance, gardening, and DIY projects. And we are so pleased to bring you more of our most favourite posts, our Local Feature Tuesdays.
Don’t forget to send us some info about your local business or event so that we can let our fantastic community know all about it! You can email us at either or
Speaking of Local Feature Tuesdays, let’s introduce you to our first local business of 2015, Vancouver Island Home & Property Service. These guys are here to take care of all of those pesky outdoor chores that seem to sneak up on us! Whether you need a hand cleaning those leaf jammed gutters or repairing your fence, Tyler and John can help. And they would be a perfect addition to get your home show ready if you’re thinking of selling this spring or summer.
Here is Deanna’s personal testimonial:
I am happy to spread the news about Vancouver Island Home & Property Service!
If you are in need of pest control or minor home repairs I feel confident recommending Tyler and John. You will love these guys! They are reliable and trustworthy.
You can contact Tyler and John
By Phone/Text at: 250-202-5531
By Email at:

Deanna and Sam’s Favourite Things…Day 2!

Day 2 is all about Our Favourite Holiday Recipes!

Pomegranate martini - Most popular cocktails seriesDeanna’s Recipe

Oprah’s Pomegranate Martinis are a staple in our house on Christmas Eve. They are so delicious and I like to think they might be a little nutritious too!

Servings: Serves 2


  • 1 1/2 cups pomegranate juice
  • 2 ounces Absolute Citron vodka or white tequila
  • 1 ounce Cointreau liquor
  • Cup of ice
  • Splash of sparkling water (optional)
  • Squeeze of lemon (optional)


Shake ingredients in a shaker and put in chilled martini glasses. Put pomegranate fruit into glass as garnish.

bb76a44a1496e7b7c20a822a267f0f9d-2Sam’s Recipe

We love making this Monkey Bread or Cinnamon Breakfast Cake (as we like to call it). The house smells amazing as it bakes away and it’s a cinch to make.


  • 20 Frozen Bread Balls
  • 1 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 Cup Vanilla Pudding Mix
  • 1-2 Tbsp of Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Cup Melted Butter


Mix dry ingredients in a bowl. Place the bread balls in a Bundt cake pan. Sprinkle the dry mixture over top. Then pour the melted butter on top. Cover with a cloth and let it sit over night. In the morning, place in the oven and bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Try to let it cool slightly before demolishing.

What are some of your favourite recipes for the holidays?

If you would like to see some decorating tips, check out Day 1 here:

We want to know if you are seeing these posts on your Facebook news feed. If you could take a moment to like, share or comment on our Facebook post and/or on this actual blog post that would be swell!! As a thank you we are going to pull a random winner at the end of our favorites week to win this basket of our favorite things including a wreath!

Christmas Gift Basket

Deanna and Sam’s Favourite Things…Holiday Edition!

Welcome to Our Little 5 Part Series regarding our Favourite Things!

Over the next couple of days we’ll be sharing our Favourite Ideas, Tips and Tricks for the Holiday Season.

Today’s post is all about Decorating for Christmas!

decorating blog pilllows

This time of year I love decorating the house. I am a throw pillow addict. One closet is already dedicated to throw pillows, and since Target has moved to town it’s officially full! Target is a GREAT place to buy a couple of festive pillows. I personally love the golds and silvers. Maybe I might pick up a bright turquoise or classic red. Or you can add a throw blanket in a festive colour or pattern to introduce a bit of Christmas magic to your room.

white pine decorating

You don’t have to wait until Christmas Eve to snappy up your table. I like to bring the outdoors in (no need for Febreeze). I prefer white pine myself, but snipping a few pine, fir and cedar bows and arranging them on your mantle or just a bit in a vase is easy and smells delicious. I even pop fir bows into my outside planters since they’re empty of all their summer flowers.


My all time favourite decorating technique is simply using Christmas balls. I fill huge glass vases, dishes and even old wooden crates .Then I put them all over the entry, the bathroom (all over the house really). You can keep it all solid colours or you can mix them up.

Happy Decorating!

We want to know if you are seeing these posts on your Facebook news feed. If you could take a moment to like, share or comment on our Facebook post and/or on this actual blog post that would be swell!! As a thank you we are going to pull a random winner at the end of our favorites week to win this basket of our favorite things including a wreath!

Christmas Gift Basket

Are You Ready For Winter?

It’s rainy, it’s pouring…you know where we’re going with that right? After such a beautiful (and unseasonably dry) summer, it feels like we are being socked with some good ole West Coast Fall. Around this time of year when it’s getting darker earlier and leaves are making their way to the ground below, it’s a great idea to start prepping for the winter months ahead. Have you checked your gutters lately? Covered up your travel trailer? Check out some of the links below for some great ideas to get you ready for winter!

This link has some fantastic suggestions for getting your home ready for the stormy winter months:


This blog provides some awesome tips and a printable checklist to keep you on track:


Buzzfeed always has some great tips and links as well:


And lastly, here is a link to some ideas for keeping your garden together this winter:

Get-Your-Yard-Ready-For-WinterNow we want to hear from you. What are some of the best tips and tricks you have learned over the years to prep your home, yard, car etc for our beautiful West Coast Winters?

Carpet vs Wood

Everyone has a preference. Some people love the cushy, homey feel of a plush carpet throughout their home. Others would rather give their home hardwood floor for the ease of cleaning and a possible drop in allergies. Statistically speaking, it has been shown that buyers will pay more for a home with hardwood then one with carpet.

Hardwood fans boast that their floors don’t hold on to allergens that can sink into the fibers of carpet. They are easy to maintain, don’t stain, and really feel “clean” unlike carpet where you often feel like vacuming is not really pulling up all the dirt and germs.

There can be some downsides to hardwood however. Depending on what kind or type of flooring you purchase, you may leave yourself open to scratching and scuffs from pets or kids toys. There is also the fact that you will be cleaning the floors more often to rid yourself of obvious dirt, dust and pet hair.

We found some great ideas on this website for Hardwood and Engineered Wood Floors:,,20413594,00.html


On the flip side, carpet feels so cozy and warm especially in the winter. It can be ideal for tumbling kids and gentle on the feet. Carpet also comes in a lot more colour options than wood, and is usually cheaper and easy to change.

But what about carpet off gas or the fact that dirt and allergens can be lurking in the fibres? The carpet industry claims that most carpet has been certified as low emitters of VOCs these days and that carpet does not aggravate asthma and allergies. It traps airborne dust particles in the spaces between the tufts, where a good-quality vacuum can dispose of it.

Carpet lost market share in the 1980s and ’90s as hard surfaces became popular. Today, about 51 percent of all floor coverings in the United States are carpet.


Here is helpful and informative link all about choosing and installing carpets:,,20420275_20840343,00.html

For those of us with pets and carpets, I think we can all relate to this story that Deanna told me yesterday. It highlights the unfortunate fact that even if you have the smallest bit of carpet in your home, your furry family member will always find it for the worst reasons. (Warning: The Story Below Contains Some Graphic Content. Finish Your Dinner First)

This morning is a prime example of my love hate relationship with carpet. I have a cat door as I like to let my cats go in and out and be crazy wild animals. But that means sometimes they bring in a mouse or as in this morning’s case throw up three piles of what appears to be The chewed up half digested remains of about a 1 pound rodent. Of all the places in the house to do it they find the small section of carpet I have.

You can wash it but you always know what was there and it never really feels clean.


So at the end of the day, you may have to take a few factors in to account when thinking about the right flooring for your style and taste. And a mixture of both carpet and hardwood (my personal choice) can give you the best of both worlds and add beautiful dimension to your home. Here is a link to an article about combining both flooring styles here:

Happy Designing!

We’re Happy to Announce…

Deanna’s Brand New WEBSITE!!

Screen Shot 2014-10-09 at 10.31.04 PM

After some building, tweaking and re-tweaking the website is up and ready to roll. We want you to think of this site as your “one stop shop” when it comes to your real estate and home needs.

Now, along with Deanna’s listings, we will be providing buying and selling tips and tricks, mortgage information, a link to this fantastic blog and so much more. You can also search all MLS listings right from the home page!

One new feature to the site you will find is a page that will be featuring links to other real estate related professionals and businesses.

Would you like to be a part of our links page? Email us at either or and tell us about your business.

Comment below once you have visited the website and let us know that you stopped by!

Are You Landlord Material?

With the Real Estate Market making a comeback, people are starting to think about the possibility of investing in rental property. Prices are still affordable and lending rates are  extremely low. There is a buzz in the air that the rental market is going to be growing stronger in the years to come. But before you jump right in you need to know what you’re getting into.
Let me start by reiterating that I am not a mortgage or investment expert. I do, however, have a few years of being a landlord myself under my belt. I’ve also committed to watching and learning from other landlord’s successes and mistakes. Before we get into the financial conversation, I’ll share some answers with you to the most common questions and concerns that I hear from potential landlords.
Should I allow my tenants to have pets? 
I have found personally that some of the best tenants had a pet and they had sometimes taken better care of my house than people with kids (seriously)!
How do I find and properly check out potential renters?
There are two common ways to go here. The first is to hire a property manager. A property manager will handle the initial meeting of potential tenants as well as any credit checks and applications. They can also act as the rental collection and hold a fund for minor repairs to your property. They also act as the go between for you and your tenant. Property Managers usually charge a monthly fee, but they are well worth it! If you are ok doing the work yourself, your second option is to use social media/craigslist. Just be prepared for 30 calls the first day from your Craigslist ad…its happened!
What about the maintenance?
Older homes may be a cost effective investment but they quite often also mean lots of maintenance and lots of calls from tenants with things like a leaky toilet!
If you are not available or handy you need to have a maintence person you can call up.
Who deals with the landscaping/gardening?
Don’t rent out a house you are emotionally attached to unless you plan to put the time and or money in to keep up the landscaping.  99% of tenants are not into landscaping and gardening.  Lawn mowing is usually expected but if you have elaborate landscaping and no one tends to it for a year you may be disappointed with the outcome.
How do I maintain a good relationship with my tenants?
In this case, the Golden Rule definitely applies. Make sure you treat the tenants like you would want to be treated. Go that extra mile.  Buy them some paint if they want to paint a room.  Reimburse them right away if they replace a fixture.  They are looking after a huge investment for you so you want to have a good relationship with them.
landlord 2
Now on to the nitty gritty…The Financials.
Unless you are a cash buyer ( no mortgage needed) you cannot expect instant cash flow. This is a long term investment.  Do the math first and figure out if the rental income will cover your mortgage payments and costs. You may want a $200 cash flow each month, or you may be okay having to contribute to the mortgage payments each month.
I like examples, so here we go..
In Campbell River you have a lot of options for potential rental properties.
You could buy an older home in the downtown core for under $200,000 but be prepared for yearly costs for maintenance and repairs, updating appliances etc. 
You can invest in a  brand new home in the high $200’s and open yourself up to many different neighbourhoods. You’ve got a higher possibility of getting top rental income but now you have a shiny new house that may get a lot of wear and tear in a quick amount of time. 
Let’s use an example of what I gravitate to, a basic 3 bedroom rancher. We’ll price it at $240,000 for this example. If you put a 10% down payment at 2.9% interest you would have monthly payments of approximately $1000 with the addition of property taxes at around $200 a month
Your rental income potential would be $1100-$1300 per month
Remember that this is a long term investment! Unless you get lucky and the market goes up 25% in 2 years, don’t expect to flip the house in a year and make money. If you look at it as a 10 year investment than that $240,000 house rented at $1250 a month (which covers that monthly mortgage payment) has helped pay down your mortgage to about $150,000. Statistically speaking the house is now potentially worth between $400,000-$450,000. You are now sitting on around $300,000 equity available to you!!! I’ll cover more about this in a future post about one of my favourite words, Leverage!
Here are some resources for you to look over:
BC residential tenancy branch link this is a must read before you even think about becoming a landlord!
As always, if you have more questions call or email me anytime. I love helping people become landlords!