Coffee Table Science

Your coffee table is a very prominent piece in your home. How you decorate it and use it throughout your day can reflect your personality. Curious to see what your coffee table says about you?

How Lifebreath Improves Your Home's Air Quality

Your home was built to be energy efficient, and Lifebreath’s HRV helps it stay that way. Sometimes stale air can get trapped indoors, causing poor air quality for you and your family. Lifebreath units work to remove stale indoor air and replace with fresh outdoor air, improving air quality and helping to prevent moisture build-up.

Decor Styles Defined

We've all done it, right? Said the name of one style of décor but meant another? Or interpreted décor as modern when it was actually contemporary.

Maybe knowing the names doesn't seem important now, but understanding which style is which and why will definitely help you design and decorate your home.

Life Hacks Every Homeowner Should Know

We've all been in the spot where something needs to be fixed or tweaked, and we don't have the tools to do so. It's always helpful, especially now with store closures and lock down restrictions, to know a workaround to fix something or at last fix it well enough until you can really address the issue.

8 Budget Friendly Upgrades That Are Worth It

When working within a budget, it's important to focus on item and upgrade costs to ensure you stay within it. But just because you have a budget, doesn't mean you have to compromise your vision! 

2021 Kitchen Design Trends

Whether you're renovating or just like keeping up with the trends, 2021 will be an exciting year for kitchen design!

How to House Hunt in 2021

When COVID hit Canada in March of last year, the real estate market slowed down until everyone could figure out what was going to happen. Now that we've been managing life during a pandemic, we've seen the real estate market pick back up throughout the rest of 2020; with no indication of slowing down for 2021.

This calls for preparedness when searching for a home! Below are some tips to help you navigate the real estate marketing at the start of 2021.

Celebrating Winter in Niagara

One can never go without experiencing wintertime in Niagara. Whether your favourite event was cancelled or scaled back, there are still events and areas you can visit in a safe way to celebrate the season. 

The Perfect Sunday Drive

We have been proudly building in Niagara for over 40 years, and sometimes we like to reflect on our past and current communities.

Fall Home Maintenance

Seasonal home maintenance is crucial to keep your home in tip top shape. With harsher weather around the corner, check your home's exterior, appliances, weather proofing, heating and cooling, and electrical systems to help prevent breakdowns and save you money.

How to Host a Social Distanced Thanksgiving

The holidays are when we want to be around our friends and families the most- celebrating, sharing delicious food, and creating memories. 

Military History in Niagara

Not only is Niagara a sought-after place to call home that is bursting with first-class amenities, it is also rich in history. Spend the day touring just some of the Niagara landmarks and locations that played a central part in Niagara and Canadian history.

How to Prep Your Garden for Fall

September came and with it the pre-Fall weather. If you were caught off guard by the change in temperatures and were hoping to get a few more months out of your garden, here are some tips to help you prepare it for Fall.

How to Set Up a Virtual Learning Space in Your Home

Whether you're participating in virtual learning at home or having your child attend school, the first day is *literally* around the corner.

10 Ways to Save Space in Your Home

If you're in a small space now or are looking to downsize, it may seem overwhelming if the space is not what you're used to. But smaller spaces shouldn't be seen as a negative!

How to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

Making your home more energy efficient is not only better for your wallet, but for the environment. All the efficient features and elements work together to lower energy consumption, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and shrink the home's carbon footprint.

How to Bring New Life to Hardwood Floors

Does your home feature once-beautiful hardwood floors that just need a little love?Or maybe you're hoping for a different finish or entirely different look?

Out With the Old (Wallpaper) and In With the New

Whether you love wallpaper or refuse to put it up in your home, we can all agree that it is a pain to take down; at least the older stuff is. But don't let that scare you!

New Construction Terms and What They Mean

Purchasing a new construction home may seem like a scary thought, but we promise we work to make the process as easy and stress-free as possible. 

Throughout the process, you'll probably hear these terms said but don't worry about trying to remember them to Google at home later; we're identifying some common new construction terms and what they mean!

Knowing More About Grading & Drainage

Water pooling in your yard or around the foundation of your home is an indicator of a drainage or grading issue that needs attention.

How to Prep Your House for Sale

You've been perusing for a new home and it happened; you found the perfect one. But now your next thought is probably, "Is this house ready to be sold?"

The Lifespan of Your Roof and Everything Under It

Whether you're house-hunting or working on updating your current residence, it's important to keep an eye on the important parts of your home and when they are required to be updated.

CIBC Banking & Mortgage Update

Were you looking for a new home before COVID-19 and have finally found the perfect place? Are you a little unsure of how to move forward with the mortgage process? We're happy to tell you that you can still move forward with your plans.

We've reached out to our trusted Mobile Mortgage Advisor, Paul Croteau from CIBC, to provide us with an update on how banking and the mortgage process has changed as a result of COVID-19.

How to Make a Small Space Feel Bigger

Don't see a small space as a negative, see it as an opportunity! A small space gives you the chance to try some design techniques to make the space feel and appear larger; and you can get a little more bold with it, too.

Tarion Resources for Homeowners

You may be wondering- who (or what) is Tarion?

Tarion is the is a non-profit, private corporation that protects the rights of new home buyers and regulates new home vendors and builders to ensure we meet a province-wide standard of technical competence. All of this enhances fairness and confidence in Ontario’s new home building industry.

Types of Condos & Homes Explained

When you're looking for a home, you're going to hear different terms to refer to the style and type of home and the grading. If you're not familiar with the language and the definitions, it can be quite overwhelming. And even if you're a seasoned pro, a little refresh couldn't hurt.

10 Things to Consider When House Hunting

When you're looking for a house, it's important to identify the items that are a priority to you; things that you are less likely to want to compromise on.

How to Do Easy Fixes Around the House

Whether it's being home or the fact that you like to tick things off your list, you're probably looking at taking care of some home maintenance on your own. 

How to Support Local Businesses During Self-Isolation

We all need a little bit of support during these unprecedented times, especially small businesses. A helpful way to stay positive and show your support is to buy local!

Merritton and St. Catharines Amenities

You may be familiar with St. Catharines, but have you paid a visit to the community of Merritton? 

From it's industrial and industrious beginnings, the town of Merritton enjoys a proud, rich history spanning almost 200 years.

How to Plant a Pollinator-Friendly Garden

With Spring weather (hopefully) on it's way, you may be thinking about cleaning up and adding to your garden, or even creating a new one!

How to Redecorate During Self-Isolation

We are all finding ourselves home a little bit more these days- and while you should take the opportunity to a) create a balance between working (from home) and your free time, or b) get some outstanding projects done while not going crazy- this is a great opportunity to refresh your space with the items you already have. (Plus, we're all probably watching more HGTV than usual.)

How to Make Your Home Pet Friendly

It doesn't have to be difficult to ensure your home is both pet friendly AND stylish! No matter the type of four-legged family member, your home's floors, rugs, and furniture can take a beating.

2020 Kitchen Trends

The kitchen is the heart of every home. It's where you cook your favourite meals, entertain your favourite people and - some say - if you can organize your kitchen, you can organize your life.

All That Grimsby Has to Offer

Aside from being steeped in history and masquerading as make-believe small towns at Christmas-time, you may have also heard by now that Grimsby was named one of Canada's top cities by MacLean's.

When to Replace your HVAC

Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning systems are one of the biggest investments you make for your home. Most HVAC systems will last approximtely 15-25 years depending on the type of system and other contributing factors.  Unfortunately, you will have to replace the system at some point, no matter how well-maintained it is.

Chippawa and Niagara Falls amenities

Have you heard of the Village of Chippawa? Because if not, we would love to introduce you to the wonderful community that is located within the city of Niagara Falls, Ontario.

COVID-19 Update

As COVID-19 continues to have an impact in Canada and around the world, Phelps Homes is closely monitoring the situation and working in accordance with the precautionary guidelines outlined by both government and health authorities.

Reasons to Live in a Bungalow Condo Community

Are you planning for your retirement? Overwhelmed with the maintenance required for your current home? Realizing that you don't need as much space now that the kids have moved out?

Preparing Your Home for a Long-Term Vacation

Planning for a long-term vacation? We have two questions for you:

1. Can we come?
2. Have you prepped your house?

How to Successfully Rent Out Your Property

Congratulations! You’ve just invested in a new home and you’re planning on renting it out. To help, we’ve outlined a few things to keep in mind in order to successfully rent out your property!

1500 Happy Homeowners

From custom renovations to beautifully crafted communities, Phelps Homes has had the pleasure of helping homeowners create their dream homes in Niagara for over 40 years.

On February 12th, 2020, we welcomed our 1500th happy homeowner into their home! Nothing beats seeing their smiling faces as their moving day becomes a reality.

After Cora's hard work designing a beautiful home at Legacy, we were so honoured to welcome her to the community!

Gems in Jordan

If you're familiar with Niagara, you know that Jordan is steeped in history and rich in experiences. If you're not familiar with Niagara: did you know that Jordan is steeped in history and rich in experiences? It's true!

Top Ten FAQs When Buying a New Construction Home

Buying a new construction home is a very exciting experience- and it can also be a great learning opportunity. If you have never bought a new build before, we're here to break down a few of our most popular FAQs to help explain the process a little more. 

Communities of Phelps Past

We have been proudly building in Niagara for over 40 years and sometimes (all the time), we like to reflect on some of our past communities that we really enjoyed constructing.

A Trip Down Memory Lane in Merritton

From it's industrial and industrious beginnings, the town of Merritton enjoys a proud, rich history spanning almost 200 years. It is also here that the Phelps family - whose future generations would found Phelps Homes - would secure their place in local history; playing a significant role in the development and construction of not only the first and second Welland Canals, but in the growth of a number of important canal-related industries as well.

Five Design Trends for 2020

New year, new design trends!

Some things are classic and never go out of style, whereas others .. well, sometimes you change your mind. And fast.

Luckily, these home trends predicted for this year are timeless design choices we can get behind!

Top New Years Resolutions for Homeowners

Whenever New Years rolls around, we all work hard to think of resolutions to keep for the next year; but it's important to make sure the resolutions are not only manageable, but don't demand you to drastically change your lifestyle. Who wants to go into a new year, let alone a new decade, with homework? (Not us.)

Lights, Camera, Christmas in Niagara

Christmastime means two things:

1. It's the perfect time of year to make some hot cocoa, wrap yourself in a blanket, and watch a Christmas movie.

2. Niagara looks beautiful under a blanket of snow.

Everything Smithville Has to Offer

When you hear Smithville, you think:

village, quaint, quiet.

2019 NHBA Member of the Year

On December 3rd, 2019, the Niagara Home Builders Association hosted their annual Country Christmas Celebration and not only was our Phelps Homes team in attendance, but our very own President - David Samis - received the prestigious Niagara Home Builders Association's 2019 Member of the Year Award!

What to Know When Applying for a Mortgage

Applying for a mortgage can be very stressful, but we want to help make the process a little easier for you.

Low Maintenance House Plants

Did you know that having plants in your home can improve air quality, help reduce stress, and keep you focused?

We've identified 10 of the best types of low-maintenance house plants PLUS how to care for them!

The Phelps Difference: Sales

Let's build together! Our Phelps trained Sales Advisors are here to help find the right home for you. Alleviating the stress of house hunting and providing real answers is key to our approach.

The Perfect Scents for Every Season

Each season comes with it's signature scents. Whether you prefer candles, diffusers, wall plugs, or room sprays- use these perfect scents to fully immerse yourself in the spirit of each season.

How to Feng Shui Your Bedroom


Feng Shui - the ancient Chinese practice of arranging physical objects to attract positive energy.

Smithville's Renaissance

When you hear the word Renaissance, what comes to mind first?

The Mona Lisa? The invention of the printing press? Perhaps the coronation of Queen Elizabeth I?

Living in the Heart of Wine Country

The Kingsway at Jordan Village features 21 executive towns with 11 floor plan options, making each home unique; all nestled amongst amazing farm-to-table restaurants, the Bruce Trail, and the award-winning wineries of Niagara Wine Country.

How to Welcome Your New Neighbours

We all know how stressful it is to move; and with busy daily schedules, it can sometimes take a while to really get to know your neighbours.

We've listed below 10 great ways to welcome new people to your neighbourhood so you can quickly go from yelling 'hello!' in the driveway to borrowing a cup of sugar, morning coffees, and game nights.

Grimsby's Legacies at Legacy

Have you ever driven past a street and wondered where its name came from? Why it was decided on?

Twenty Real Estate Terms and What They Mean

Are you thinking of buying your first home but feel overwhelmed trying to understand all of the new terms you're learning?

Eight Ways to Decorate Your Porch For Fall

Whether you`re a fan of the cooler weather or not, Autumn is upon us. It will soon officially be the season of pumpkins, rich colours, and cozy sweaters. Why not embrace it and bring those elements to life on your front porch? (The cozy sweaters are for you, of course.)

What is the new first time home buyer's incentive?


Looking to buy your first home? The First Time Home Buyer Incentive Program (FTHBI) wants to make it a little easier for you to do so. The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) will contribute part of the down payment in exchange for sharing in the appreciation or loss when you eventually sell your home- known as shared equity or co-ownership.

Why Legacy?

Why Legacy? Grimsby's Last Bungalow Community

Legacy is Grimsby's exclusive community of bungalow towns, with price points starting in the mid-$500s.

The ongoing maintenance required for a large home and property is the one of the many reasons homeowners think about downsizing. The desire to live comfortably with added services for your property is why buyers look for condos.

Welcome Home To Grimsby

By now I'm sure you've heard Grimsby is one of the best places to live in Canada!

The Town of Grimsby was named Second in Maclean Magazine's annual Best Community rankings.

"Grimsby, a town on Lake Ontario between Hamilton and St. Catharines... boasts great weather, an engaged community and a fast-growing population. Residents of Grimsby enjoy access to the region’s strong economy and quick driving times to the border as well as the benefits of life in a smaller town on the waterfront." 

Grimsby, second only to Burlington, has unique distinctions that make it a truly amazing place to live. The charming town of Grimsby has every amenity including; walking trails, parks, beaches, community centres, restaurants and shops, and healthcare services.  Grimsby is also close to the Bruce Trail, Wine Country, Niagara Falls, outlet shopping, and so much more.

The Niagara Independent notes "The top three features for Grimsby were wealth and economy, culture and community and weather.

Live Your Legacy in Grimsby

Legacy is Grimsby’s exclusive collection of bungalow towns. One of Phelps Homes’ premier communities, this is the perfect location for buyers looking to downsize.

Centrally located in a beautiful and established neighbourhood just 20 minutes from Burlington. Buyers don’t have to compromise their lifestyle! These upscale craftsman-style bungalows and bungalofts, boast generous space for living, with lot sizes approximately 2,600 sq ft.

Perfect for snow birds or travellers, this community offers homeowners care-free living at its best. With lawn maintenance, snow removal and even driveway clearing, you can lock and go as you please!

Your maintenance-free lifestyle starts here at Legacy. Rich in elevated features like 9ft ceilings, granite counters, hardwood floors and quality finishes - you’ll love your home for years to come.

You'll enjoy all of what Grimsby and Niagara have to offer!








Home Types Defined

Did you know there is more than one type of condo? 

Do you know the difference between a Stacked or Row House? 

Here are a few simple definitions of different home types you may run into while house hunting.  

Whichever type you choose to purchase, it's important to read the condo rules and declaration (if applicable) which should be provided to you once your offer on the home is accepted. Look for rules regarding pets, parking, barbecues and any other restrictions that could potentially impact your lifestyle. 

There are two main types of Condos; Freehold and Leasehold.

Freehold: Freehold Condos fall into three categories and offer a lot of benefits. The ownership of the property is collective and so the homeowner contributes fees for the ongoing maintenance and improvement of the property and common elements.  

  1. Standard Condominium: You are the owner of your unit, plus you have an interest in the property's common elements and assets. This means the lobby, hallways, elevators, rooftop terrace, gym etc. You cannot separate this interest from ownership of your unit and therefore your condo fees would go towards the maintenance or service requirements that go with it.
  2. Vacant Land Condominium: In a VLC development you may see a combination of types of homes ie. detached and townhomes. VLCs often offer homeowners the care-free lifestyle standard condominiums provide like, snow shoveling and lawn maintenance services, with the added freedom of owning everything inside your property line.
  3. Common Elements Condominium: In this type of condo development you'll see individual addresses rather than unit numbers. You own your house, the land on which it sits AND you and your neighbours share ownership of the roads and other "common elements" (like a community room or landscaping feature) in the development. Here's where it gets tricky... Your part-interest in the condo corporation is attached to the parcel of land you own, not your house. The Parcel of Tied Land (POTL) is permanently attached to your interest in these common elements.

Leasehold Condominium: With a Leasehold condo, you purchase the home you will occupy, but you and the builder are just leasing the land, which is usually owned by a government municipality. The homeowner owns their unit and also shares any common elements owned by the condo corporation for that development. 

As the land is only leased by the builder or developer, they're paying rent towards it and therefore your condo fees will contribute towards the rent being paid to the landowner.

Condominium Apartment (Strata): A condo apartment is a self-contained housing unit within in a building that includes other similar units. They range is size from studios (bachelor apartments) to multi-bedroom suites. Each unit has its own kitchen, bathroom, heating and cooling system. These buildings usually feature a number of amenities for the homeowners to share like a pool, gym and community room.

Townhome: A townhome is the same as a Row house or Townhouse. These are more than two, similar single-family homes, attached side-by-side. Exterior units refer to the homes at the ends of blocks where only one side is attached, while Interior units are those in the middle, attached on both sides.

Stacked Townhome: These are townhomes stacked one on top of the other and are attached side-by-side, but are also stacked vertically with 3 or 4 units on top of each other. While each unit has a front and back, the lower units tend to have a patio or balcony and the upper units may have rooftop access.

Single-family Detached: One home or unit that stands alone on its own lot. These are normally freehold.

Single-family Semi-detached: A home that is attached on one side to another home, unlike townhomes, these are only in groups of two. These are normally freehold.

For more information, review the source sites below:

5 ways to know you've found the right home

Can't tell if a new build is right for you?

Buying new construction for the first time can be daunting. You're looking at floorplans, various models, elevations and decor options; and you may not be able to walk through a decorated model home...

We're here to help! Keep in mind these five ways to know if you've found the right new build for you.

1. The price is right

You'll know you've found the right new home if the model you want is within your budget.

You should consider any "starting at __" price as the lowest price point available in that development and look at the offered models from there.

You'll also want to consider what the standard finishes are like. You may love them or you may want to upgrade a few things to suit your personal taste. Customization means you'll need room in your budget for upgrading your finishes.  

The builder may also be offering purchaser incentives (extra things you get). If you love the incentives too, you've found the right one.


2. The timing is right 

The right home for you, also has a closing date that works for you. You may be renting, staying with family/friends or need time to sell your current home and you'll want to plan for when you're new home will be ready to move into.

If your schedule matches up with the projected closing date and you'd still be comfortable in the rare occurrence a delay impacts your move in day, you know you can proceed with the home purchase.


3. The floorplan is right

The layout of the rooms and overall flow of the spaces makes sense. You'll know the home is right for you, if the planned layout works for your real life.

Look at the floorplans for storage spaces like linen closets and cabinets, so you know that you'll have room for everything.

- Can you visualize where you'd place furniture?

- Do you know where you'd put your TV?

- If something doesn't work for you, can you change it for the build?

If "yes" to all of these questions, then you've found your ideal home.


4. The location is right 

Location is everything! Since the location of the home is something you can't change, make sure you'd be happy there.

Sometimes with new builds, you'll be part of a growing community where your investment will pay off in the long run. You may need to be close to highway access for your commute or good schools for your children; be sure the area offers all of the amenities you'll need. 

If you can picture yourself living in the neighborhood, you've found the right home.


5. You are excited to move in!

You've had that moment when you are ready to stop house hunting. You should feel excited, after all it's a brand new home, built just for you, with all of your personal selections.

If the home checks off all of the other boxes and you can't wait to move in, you've found the right home!

Retire and Upgrade in Niagara

Live your best life in Niagara!

Why Rent When You Can Own?

At Phelps we know that we’re not just building homes… we’re opening doors and building dreams. 

How to Maintain Your Home During Winter

From Roof Rakes to Weather Stripping: 5 Tips To Maintain Your Home During Winter

There's more to winter home maintenance than keeping the driveway shoveled. Before you start cozying up with some hot cocoa, read our checklist to see if your home is good to go through the rest of the winter.

Top Design Trends for 2019

Emerging trends from the end of 2018 might have you switching to mustard yellow colours and natural greenery in 2019. The Pinterest 100 showcased the latest trends that are set to inspire design choices for home decor in 2019.

How To Host A Stress Free Home For The Holidays

Hosting on the holidays should be easier, and Phelps Homes is here to help.

If you've just downsized to a bungalow, how do you make the most of the space in your home that's just right for you, but maybe a little cozy for a gaggle of guests?

What if you've just moved in to your first home and just couldn't find the time to decorate?

No worries. Whether you're decking the halls with cheer or having a Festivus for the rest of us and ordering Chinese food, here are some quick tips to make the holidays easier. 

Why Smithville: How One Woman Found Her Dream Home


Jordan: Home Of Canada's Best Restaurant

Fresh aromas drifting out of an unassuming stark-black barn in Jordan hint at what Canada's Best Restaurants has declared the best restaurant in Canada. Welcome to Pearl Morissette in Jordan, Ontario.

Spec Homes: What You Need To Know

You've probably heard of a quick-close home before, but they also go by the name of "Spec Homes" and are known for being an option for the buyer who wants a brand new home they can put the finishing touches on, but without having to wait for the build to be finished.