Laura Leppard

Helping YOU Change Your SPOTS!


I have listed a new property at 2200 McIntosh RD in Shawnigan Lake.
Shawnigan Beach Estates, this home has it all! Enter this custom built home through a cathedral entrance into a sunken living room w/cathedral ceiling, new HE pellet stove & raised dining area. Spacious kitchen filled with light. Oak cabinets & quartz counters make this open kitchen feel luxurious yet homey. French doors lead out from kitchen & eating nook onto a 483 sq ft deck to soak up the sun. Beside the nook is a family room which is fantastic for entertaining. Large bonus room w roughed in wet bar, used as a bedroom. Laundry & 2 pc as well! And that's just the main floor! Upstairs are 2 bathrooms and 3 bedrooms plus large master bedroom. Ensuite features a slate tiled jetted soaker tub and separate shower. Lower level features a huge mudroom, workshop & storage areas. Fir sashed windows grace the entire home. Custom built carport with hand crafted fir lattice and beams allows for boat and car storage, for a total of 5 covered parking spots, 2 driveways. Near trails & beach.

I have listed a new property at 599 PINE RIDGE DRIVE in COBBLE HILL.
Arbutus Ridge! Overlooking 3rd fairway, immaculate 2 bedroom gated golf course community home with 24/7 concierge style security. Over 1800 sqft, new appliances,new family room carpet, new bathroom flooring, new kitchen flooring and new carpet in hall & bedrooms. Updated kitchen with new counters, painted cupboards and new appliances. New washer and dryer, newer roof,new counters in bathrooms, new toilets, so many updates! 2 gas fireplaces, skylights throughout the home and only 40 minutes to Victoria. Enjoy the beautifully landscaped yard from patio with panoramic mountain and golf course views.Patio doors off of Family Room & Master Bedroom. Modern paint colors throughout.

I have listed a new property at 6049 Riverbottom RD W.
Live "Off the Grid" on this amazing gated Cowichan River waterfront acreage and cabin. Super private fully treed lot is accessed through Provincial Park Gate. The property is over 4 acres and is amongst other similar subdivided parcels. Surrounded by the Cowichan River Provincial Park this extremely private bit of heaven has the Cowichan River running right through it and yet is less than 20 minutes from Downtown Duncan. The property also offers 880 sq ft substantially completed cedar cabin with 220 sq ft loft and metal roof built in 2009-2010. Interior cedar panelling throughout. The cabin comes with a exterior detached wood shed which cost $2000 to build only 3 years ago and is filled with maple firewood. The firewood is negotiable in the offer. $7000 Cooking stove negotiable in offer. This is a must see to believe amazing location! No septic, well or hydro installed. Immediate possession available.

I have listed a new property at 2725 Dundas RD in Shawnigan Lake.
Super charming home in the heart of Shawnigan Village. This home has been completely rebuilt from the foundation up in 2010. All new flooring, plumbing, wiring, walls, appliances, bathroom fixtures, counters etc. Large open concept kitchen/dining area. 4 bedrooms on main level plus grand master w ensuite and reading nook on upper level. Priced to sell this home also boasts an almost full height lower level music room/workshop accessible from the exterior of the home. Quiet road, very family friendly. 4th bedroom could be easily reclaimed to provide larger living room area.

What’s Hot in New Home Trends for 2013?

home trends small luxury home1 Whats Hot in New Home Trends for 2013?

Green, cutting edge, technological, luxurious, and entertaining are adjectives that best describe where housing trends are heading. While the word trends suggest a fleeting fancy, the forecast suggests that we are on the cutting edge of some fantastic innovations that are not only here to stay, but will continue to grow and evolve, influencing potential future home trends.

home trends small luxury home Whats Hot in New Home Trends for 2013?

Scaled down

Building trends are showing scaled down, smaller homes. Gone are the days of superfluous, excessive and opulent. Newer homes, as well as designs within are much more streamlined. Even the furniture industry is showing simpler, more scaled-down models. The oversized, “fluffy” couches are being replaced by models that are more minimal in style and feel, with a very mid century influence.  As a result of these smaller-scaled homes people are making much more efficient use of their space.

Large home offices are no longer sought after. Pocket offices are one of the top trends in home design, according to the National Association of Home Builders. The rising popularity of several generations living together under one roof may have helped to fuel the trend. Unused spare bedrooms were turned into home offices. These home offices are being converted back into bedrooms to accommodate grown children that are returning to the nest, or elderly parents needing to be looked after.

home trends green home Whats Hot in New Home Trends for 2013?

Green living

This certainly is not a trend. Green is most definitely mainstream. It’s not going anywhere as it’s here to stay and we will see a rise in all things green, environmentally friendly and sustainable from building materials, paints, windows, floorings, windows, countertops,  plumbing and electrical. There is an increasing demand for eco-friendly paint and adhesives. Home furnishings and accessories are following this path.

home trends home theaters Whats Hot in New Home Trends for 2013?

Despite the downsizing of the family home there are certain luxury items that are in demand. Saunas are once again becoming popular and are being added to master bathrooms and pool areas. Media rooms have been on rise for some time. With more families staying home, vacationing less and spending less on entertainment venues, these homeowners are investing their money in rooms designed for specifically for multimedia entertainment devices, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Consumer Reports states that home elevators are on the rise, especially in well to do and multi-generational homes where elderly relatives may have a harder time with the stairs. Multi-generational living is also driving force behind basement conversions. Basements, once a place for the young to hang out and entertain, are now being reconfigured to create separate living spaces for in-laws complete with kitchens, bedrooms and a separate living space.

home trends outdoor living spaces Whats Hot in New Home Trends for 2013?

Moving outdoors

Homeowners are moving outdoors, especially those who are spending more time at home. Porches, patios, decks, terraces and verandas are no longer just outdoor spaces; they have become outdoor living areas where homeowners go to relax, spend time with their families, dine or entertain guests. We are also seeing an increase in outdoor kitchens for cooking and dining. These kitchens are equipped with built-in grills, sinks, storage, refrigeration, countertops and beer taps.

These outdoor cooking areas are being designed to resemble the indoor kitchens. High end appliances, movie screens, outdoor furnishings, fireplaces and fire pits, as well as television and audio systems are rising in popularity. Reflective of our interest in the environment and our health, outdoor vegetable gardens are also in soaring in popularity.

home trends outdoor shower Whats Hot in New Home Trends for 2013?

Clean up outdoors

Following hot on the heels of outdoor dining and entertaining is the outdoor shower. Outdoor showers, and outdoor bathrooms in general are quickly gaining popularity. With creative landscaping a sense of total privacy can be achieved. 50 years ago it was uncommon for a single-family, 3 bedroom home to have more than one bathroom, now it is the norm. The outdoor bathroom too will become commonplace one day. These outdoor bathing areas are far from rustic, to the contrary, they are eco-friendly luxuries.

home trends technically advanced homes Whats Hot in New Home Trends for 2013?

Homes are getting smarter

Technology is becoming more and more affordable and more and more commonplace. A new type of generator, created by General Electric, can be monitored and activated from a smart phone, giving an out of town homeowner peace of mind. Touchscreen deadbolts, and thermostats that can be programmed remotely will one day be commonplace. The rise of smart appliances that are focused on energy savings will eventually make way for more affordable models thus being more readily available. At this point they are still quite cost prohibitive.

home trends luxury kitchens Whats Hot in New Home Trends for 2013?

Kitchens and bathrooms are getting more stylish

No matter the size of the house, stylish kitchens and bathrooms remain at the top of many wish lists. Many homeowners are remodeling their homes instead of building on to them. The latest trend in kitchen design is the transitional look which is a combination of both traditional and contemporary design.

Because so much time is spent living, not just eating, in the kitchen, these rooms are being redesigned to accommodate the events that take place in the kitchen, from homework, to socializing to cooking and eating. Kitchens are designed for larger crowds, even putting its chef on display with plenty of seating for the viewers. The rise in popularity of gourmet kitchens with upscale appliances, top notch lighting show no sign of slowing down.


1. Breaking the news 

Breaking the news of your move can be one of the most critical moments of the entire process. Use the first announcement to explain to your kids how you think the move will benefit the whole family. You’re going to want to bring the kids in on the moving process by having them help out, but don’t cross that bridge just yet — leave this for after the initial talk. If you have more than one kid, address each of them later in private once they've had some time to let it all sink in. Express to them personally what you’re expecting. Kids are aspirational, and if you make it clear to them that you need their help as part of the process, they’re more likely to step up and help out. Being as open and clear about what moving entails will always be better in the long run. With young children, don’t assume that they'll have a good grasp on what it all means right away. Patience is the key.

2. Keep the lines of communication open

Take the time to talk to your kids about the move. If applicable, ask them what room in the house they'd like, or how they want it to look. Use these conversations as an opportunity to explain the things you think they'll like about the neighbourhood you’re moving to. Take your children seriously and listen to their feelings and concerns even when you can’t address their desires directly. Sometimes, more than anything, children just wants to know that they've been heard, even if they can’t have their way.

Moving by Marco Varisco
Moving by Marco Varisco

3. Out with the old

This part of the process will depend a lot on the temperament of your kids, but it's time to pare down the household and make room for the new. Getting rid of old stuff can be a pain, or it can be a fun family activity (and as a bonus, you can have a garage sale at the end of it!). It can be tedious and time-consuming to try to go through your child’s things, having to ask them piece by piece what they want to keep or give away, but if you get the kids excited with the prospect of a garage sale, then the kids will do a better job sorting than you ever could. Margaret, mother of two, has another take:

We have moved back when I was still expecting. The only thing that we learned from the experience is to unpack things only as they are needed: emotional mementos and actual necessities. This way, whatever is still in boxes after 60 days can be easily disposed of.

Paring down can be some of the hardest work of moving, so make it easy on yourself.

4. Timing is everything

If you can, try to time the move around the more stable periods in your kids’ lives. Moving during the school year can be disruptive and make integration into the new community and school environment much more difficult. 

5. Take advantage of relatives and friends

If you have small children, every minute they can be in another’s care will make the moving process that much easier. If your kids are a bit older, these can be opportune days for them to say their prolonged goodbyes to their friends in the neighbourhood. This will also allow you to space out the packing process a lot more.

6. Pack small boxes of the kids' things last

Go through the contents of these special, easy-access boxes with your kids item by item, and label them well! Don’t make the mistake of packing a favourite toy, book, or videogame too soon. When you arrive at the new place, you likely won’t have the luxury of friends and family that can entertain the kids while you sort through your new life, so you’ll want to have the kids entertain themselves for a time while you get to sorting through boxes. Jennifer, mother of two, also advises:

Make sure vaccination cards, medicine, any prescription they may have and medical insurance papers are readily available and not stuck in some anonymous package.

These are not the sorts of items you don't want to have to hunt around for should the need arise in a new place.

Empy Apartment by Matt Biddulph
Empy Apartment by Matt Biddulph

7. Saying Goodbye

You’re likely leaving a lot of people behind that you and your children had relationships with. A goodbye party can be a great way to bookend your time with the old place. If you can, though, have your neighbour or family member host the event. This can double as a goodbye present and will also save you the nightmare of planning a party in a half-packed house.

8. Familiarize your family with the new neighbourhood

Research the opportunities and activities that are close to your kids' hearts. Don’t just tell them about it; show them! It can be easy to be a bit of a hermit when you’ve just moved to a new place and don’t know anyone, so your kids might just need a push in the right direction. If they’re teenagers, mind that you don’t push too hard, but letting slip about the local youth culture and music scenes in the early days can pay later.

9. Keep the familiar that works

Routine can be very comforting in new environments and can help children deal with separation anxiety. Do your best to keep important family times and activities the same as soon as you can after arriving at the new house. Family meetings, dinners, weekly traditions — try to keep these consistent or go out and find a new local equivalent to meet your needs. Modifying old traditions in this way can also allow you to bridge the gap between the old and new and make the new place feel like home a lot quicker.

Moving by Pawel Loj
Moving by Pawel Loj

10. Remember your own needs

You’re doing a lot of work to make your kids comfortable with the move and you’re doing your best to make the process as painless as possible for them. You know it will be better for them in the long run, but sometimes that still won’t mean they understand right away. It’s okay. In all of this, remember to treat yourself with as much consideration and kindness as the rest of the family. You’re doing your best and a lot is counting on you. It's okay to make mistakes, and moving is stressful business. Relax. Breathe. It’s going to be great.

MLS® property information is provided under copyright© by the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board and Victoria Real Estate Board. The information is from sources deemed reliable, but should not be relied upon without independent verification.