Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

Aug. 1, 2022

Why It’s Still a Sellers’ Market

You might be wondering what that means for your intentions to sell your home as reports of the real estate market slowing down from the high frenzy it experienced during the pandemic increases. If you're considering moving, you should be aware that the market is still far from typical.


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Even if there are more houses for sale this year than last, the housing market is still undersupplied. And that indicates that the current housing market is still in favor of sellers. This is because the number of available properties for sale might indicate whether buyers or sellers are in control. Consider it like this:


Buyer's Market


When there are more homes for sale than there are potential buyers, it is considered a buyers' market. When that occurs, buyers are in a stronger negotiating position since sellers are more inclined to make concessions in order to sell their homes.


Seller's Market


Contrarily, in a sellers' market, it is true. For the number of buyers in the market, there aren't enough homes available, giving the seller complete control. In that case, purchasers will exert every effort to compete for the few available residences.


Neutral Market


When there are enough properties to meet buyer demand at the current sales rate and supply is balanced.


And because inventory has been at or near record lows for the past two years, we've been in a scorching sellers' market.


What Does This Mean for You?


The best overall conclusion is that we'll switch from a brisk sellers' market to a modest sellers' market.


Even though the market is slowing down, the situation is still favorable to you. You'll have luck selling your home today if you collaborate with a real estate agent to set the price at the market level. Despite the fact that buyer demand is waning as a result of rising mortgage rates, properly priced properties are nevertheless selling quickly. That indicates that you still have time to list your home.

July 25, 2022

What to Ask and When to Sell Your House

Selling leaves you with a lot of responsibility after hitting the lottery. Moving expenses. rates for mortgages. the entire process of looking for a new place to live that fits your needs and lifestyle.


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We've gathered advice from experts on how to answer eight crucial questions to help you decide whether to sell your home, how to get the best price, and when to close.


Is it a buyer’s or seller’s market?


The housing market is influenced by interest rates, unemployment, and other economic issues. Even if property values increase over time naturally, market conditions still have an impact on how much money you'll make when you sell.


Do you have a proven real estate agent?


Of course, there are additional factors to consider when selling your home in addition to market conditions. You can be guided through this uncharted region by an experienced real estate agent. Actually, the majority of sellers rely on an agent's knowledge.


Agents are compensated for their assistance with commissions ranging from 5% to 6%, which are normally paid in full at closing by the seller, but their knowledge is priceless.


An agent’s advice includes:

  • Recommendations for any upgrades and fixes prior to advertising the property, as well as a network of contractors who can provide quotes


  • An effective price plan built on a comparative market analysis that includes graphs, technical details, and images of comparable homes in your area


  • Staging, expert photography, setting up private previews for other brokers, virtual tours, and organizing open houses are all examples of marketing services.


  • Managing offers, negotiating concessions and repairs, and dealing with any issues that arise so you may get at the closing table without stress.


Does your home no longer fit your needs?


Life takes place. Even if you enjoy your current residence and have lived there for a while, a job change or other circumstances may prompt you to look elsewhere.


Last year's sellers informed the NAR that they wished to relocate because their current residences were either too tiny or too far away from friends and family (18%). (17 percent ). 85 percent of buyers in May made their purchases in a suburb, a small town, the country, or a resort location, indicating that people are still drawn to larger, more open spaces.


Additionally, as people age and become empty nesters, they frequently no longer desire the two-story homes in which they were raised.


Can you afford to move?


Unfortunately, moving is more difficult than simply clapping your hands and teleporting to your new location. Even while some life circumstances may take precedence over money matters, occasionally the math just doesn't work out.


People sometimes overlook the following fees while planning a move:

  • Using the value of your home to pay off debt.
  • An increase in living expenses.
  • Either a security deposit or a down payment.
  • Establishing utilities at your new residence.
  • Actual moving expenses.
  • Closing expenses.


What’s your selling timeline?


You can't be very picky with your bids if a new job requires moving to a different state in two weeks; even then, things can happen that cause the sale to be delayed. According to NAR figures, houses listed in June spent an average of 14 days on the market and received an average of 3.4 offers, down from 4.2 a month earlier.


The circumstances of your buyer, such as a job loss, could potentially scuttle the transaction.


Is your neighborhood changing?


If you've been in your house for at least ten years, you've seen how your neighborhood has changed. Perhaps there are more schools nearby, or you've just realized you're the oldest neighbor.


Is it a good time of year to move?


According to historical trends, the best months to sell a house are traditionally June if you want to optimize the sale price and July if you want to move swiftly.


Location, however, can affect this. The ideal time to sell depends on your region, interest rates, and market circumstances even if you are not dealing with seasonal weather.


Is your home in shape to sell?


True, some improvements, including boosting liveable square footage, raise your home's appraised worth and attract potential buyers. However, to get your house in the best condition to sell, you don't have to completely renovate it.


Do you feel as though anything in your current house is no longer appropriate?



Think of this as an extra question. Selling your house can also depend on other factors, such as having little extra money in your budget each month, needing to turn your home equity into income, or simply seeking a change in lifestyle.

July 18, 2022

Expert Predictions for the Housing Market for the Second Half of the Year

If you're considering buying or selling a home, the present state of the housing market may have you wondering if now is still a good time to do so. Do I need to move this year? Let's look to the experts for predictions on what the second half of the year will bring for residential real estate to help with those answers.


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Depending on inflation, mortgage rates could change.


Although where mortgage rates will go in the coming months is one of the main concerns for all buyers, no one has a crystal ball to predict exactly what will happen in the future. The record-low mortgage rates during the epidemic were an exception, not the rule, according to housing industry analysts.


As a result of the Federal Reserve's response to growing inflation this year, rates have increased by more than 2%. Mortgage rates will certainly change if inflation keeps on rising.


The current mortgage rate is a crucial issue to take into account whether you're purchasing your first home or selling your present residence to move. Rate increases affect affordability and your buying power. Working with a team of professionals is essential to get competent guidance and make the best choice possible.


Homes for sale are expected to continue to be more plentiful.


There are more houses for sale this year, especially this spring. This is partly because more homeowners are putting their homes on the market, but it's also because higher mortgage rates have lessened the strength of the demand from buyers. The rate of home sales is slowed by moderating buyer demand, which contributes to an increase in inventory.


According to experts, growth will continue. The inventory projection for 2022 on was recently updated. They significantly upped their forecasts for inventory gains in the most recent report, ranging from a 0.3 percent increase at the start of the year to a 15.0 percent increase by the end of 2022.


Forecasts for home prices indicate continued appreciation


The pandemic caused housing prices to rise by unprecedented amounts since there were too few properties available for sale compared to the number of people trying to buy. According to CoreLogic, property values increased by 15% in 2021, and they have been rising ever since.


Even if there are more homes for sale today, there are still more buyers than there are available properties, which keeps pressure on home prices upward. Because of this, analysts do not anticipate a drop in prices; rather, they predict that they will continue to rise this year, albeit at a slower rate.


The current rate of home price growth is unsustainable, and if mortgage rates rise and there is more inventory, home price growth will be slower but it is unlikely that prices would fall.


If you currently own a home and are considering selling, know that its value is not expected to decrease. However, delaying to buy your next home could result in higher housing costs as home prices continue to rise. Because of this, it can make sense to buy a home now rather than later if you're considering doing so or are ready to move. However, you can be confident that if you purchase a property, the price growth will assist increase the value of your investment.


Contact a real estate agent to go through your objectives and the future so you can choose the ideal moving strategy.

July 14, 2022

Seasonal and Monthly Checklists for Home Maintenance

It's no secret that owning a home is expensive. Although estimates of maintenance costs vary, one fast rule suggests that when addressing a home maintenance checklist, homeowners set aside 1% of the home's value each year for maintenance fees.


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Even when you're investing money in the property, changing the air filters or cleaning the gutters won't automatically raise the worth of your house. However, if you aren't taking proper care of your house, you can find that when you decide to sell, its worth has decreased.


Home maintenance checklist: Where to begin?


Especially if you intend to sell your home within the next year or two, it might be difficult to know where to start certain repairs. Are you prepared to begin? We've categorized our home maintenance checklist so you can easily find the frequency and season of each chore.


Monthly maintenance tasks


Clean and replace HVAC filters


Your HVAC system's air filters can help it operate more effectively, last longer, and provide better indoor air quality throughout the house.


Clean and descale faucets and shower heads


Your shower heads and faucets may eventually become soiled and possibly even have scale accumulation. You can clean them by putting white vinegar in a ziplock bag, tying it to the shower head or faucet with zip ties, and letting it sit for an hour or two. Remove the bag, then wipe away any sediment with a cloth. After that, you should run hot water through the openings.


Inspect drains for clogs


It's really simple. You can use a drain cleaner if your drains aren't functioning properly. You can also use boiling water to flush the drain or a solution of baking soda and vinegar for home treatments.


Inspect electric cords


Make sure there are no frayed or damaged electrical cords by walking around your house and inspecting them. An electrical fire may start because of damaged cords.


Clean garbage disposal


If it isn't cleaned frequently, a garbage disposal can become fairly disgusting. Turn on the garbage disposal after dropping a few ice cubes and some lemon peels in there. Any food buildup will be broken down, and the citrus peels will give the kitchen a fresh scent.


Seasonal maintenance


Winter maintenance tasks


Check for signs of ice dams


If left hanging on the roof eaves, icicles and ice dams (thick ridges of solid ice) can lead to several issues. If you notice any, use a roof rake to remove the snow securely without endangering the siding or roof.


Winterize pipes


To avoid your pipes from bursting because the water inside them froze while you were away during the coldest months, you should winterize them. To accomplish this, shut off the water supply at the main valve and open all of the taps in the house to create a gradual, even drip.


Spring maintenance tasks


Spring cleanup


After laying mulch in your flowerbeds, you should rake up any fallen leaves that you may have missed in the fall. Your plants will be protected by the mulch from any cold spells, weed growth, and drought. Check the trees as you go around for indications of broken limbs, insect or animal damage, or other damage.


Lawn prep


Now is the time to begin if you've always wanted a lush, green lawn. Patches of barren grass should be filled in and reseeded. Although you won't need to fertilize it right away, be sure to keep some on hand just in case. In addition to being more appealing to the eye, maintaining stunning landscaping can raise the value of your house.


Inspect the exterior of your home


When inspecting the exterior of your property, pay close attention to the roof to make sure there are no gaps that water can enter, no missing shingles, and no indications of wood rot. If there are any cracks in the driveway, patio, or walks on the ground, fill them in with concrete.


Gutter maintenance


Neglected gutters that are overflowing with leaves and other debris can ruin your siding and result in water damage. You'll have to roll up your sleeves, grab the ladder, and begin scooping out the muck to stop this.


After cleaning the gutters, you can make this work simpler by installing gutter guards. Your gutters will remain clean and unclogged thanks to the guards.


Clean the exterior


The home's outside will inevitably become dirty, and spring is an excellent time to use the power washer (or rent one). Make sure the siding is in good condition by taking a tour around the house before you start power washing it. To avoid wood rot, you should immediately take care of any damage you see.


Repair and clean the deck or patio


While you have the power washer out, you don’t want to forget to power wash the deck and patio! Check to make sure there aren’t any loose boards, screws, or nails. If there are, repair them.


Check the plumbing


Look for leaks or corrosion in the supply line, water heater, and pipes. Sometimes you can catch these things in time to prevent any harm. However, you'll need to employ a plumber if you have a significant issue, such as rusted pipes or a leaking water heater.


Summer maintenance tasks


Tidy up the yard


Your flowers should be blooming by now, the grass should be expanding, and everything should be OK! To avoid cutting the grass too short during the summer, you should set your lawnmower to the maximum setting.


Check sprinkler system


Make sure your sprinkler system is functioning properly if you have one. Check each component of the system to ensure the sprinkler heads are upright, that there are no blockages in the line, and that no vegetation is blocking the spray.


Reverse ceiling fans


By turning the ceiling fans so they spin in the other direction from clockwise, you may keep your rooms cooler in the summer. By doing this, a cool wind will be produced as the cool air is forced downward.


Check for bugs, rodents, and other pests


Bugs, rats, and other pests thrive in the summer and can cause a lot of problems. Small issues like an ant trail or a few mice in the cabinet are typically simple to eliminate and clean up after.


Inspect the foundation


Did you know that a poor foundation can cause your home's value to decrease by as much as 15%? Take the time to properly inspect your foundation for indications that you may have a problem because it's important to find a problem early on before it gets out of hand.


Autumn maintenance tasks


Touch up paint where needed


The summer heat may be severe, and it can start to fade the paint on the outside (and even in interiors that receive a lot of direct sunshine). The excessive dampness in some locations with a lot of rain can make paint peel and chip. The exterior of your property might be entirely repainted or touched up as you clear away clutter from surfaces.


Powerwash exterior and walkways


It's a good idea to use the power washer once more now that the temperature is cooler to clean up any cobwebs, filth, and grime before winter arrives. Use this opportunity to inspect your home's exterior for any indications of possible damage.


Rake up the fallen leaves


With its colorful foliage, autumn is a gorgeous season, but it's also very untidy. If the leaves pile up, they could destroy the lush lawn you worked so hard to create in the spring. As the leaves wither and fall, they can create quite a mess. Large mounds of leaves make the ideal habitat for insects to reproduce and for little rodents to build their nests.


Turn off your sprinkler system


You do not want to skip this step if your area experiences a very harsh winter and you have a sprinkler system. You face the risk of the irrigation lines breaking or, worse, cracking if you don't turn off your sprinkler system during the scalding cold months.


Inspect HVAC system


You already did this in the spring, but you should do it one more in the fall just before the bitter cold arrives. By doing this, you'll increase the system's lifespan, make it more energy-efficient, and reduce health concerns.


Check and clean exhaust fans


An exhaust fan plays a critical role in home maintenance because it pulls excess moisture out of a room, thus preventing the risk of mold and mildew – both of which are deterrents for buyers. The fan in the bathroom is pretty easy to clean, as it’s just dust and cobwebs, but the exhaust fan in the kitchen is going to require more effort because you’re going to be cleaning grease buildup, not just dust.


Clean gutters


Here is yet another project you completed in the spring. To make sure everything is clear and draining properly before the winter weather arrives, we advise cleaning the gutters twice a year.


Inspect and clean the chimney


An annual inspection of your chimney is recommended to check for any problems that might restrict the escape of harmful gases. Then, based on how frequently you use the chimney, you may wish to periodically get it cleaned.


A home maintenance checklist is a lifesaver!


Home upkeep involves several steps, and it's simple to occasionally forget to complete some of them. This home maintenance checklist is a terrific resource to help you make sure your house is in excellent condition both now and when it's time to sell.


When you start having prospective buyers come to view your property, you'll have a lot less to worry about if you keep up with the tasks on this list. However, if you plan to sell soon, find a top real estate agent who can assist you in setting priorities for what has to be done first for a smooth sale.





July 11, 2022

Common Home Buying Scams and How to Avoid Them

The number of home buying scams is increasing along with the demand for quick all-cash home purchase services.


One of the cyber frauds with the fastest national growth is real estate fraud. As scammers particularly target house sellers and buyers, the FBI finds a 42 % rise in real estate crimes in recent years.


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We'll go over the most typical home buying scams in this post, their red flags, and how to make sure the proceeds from the sale of your home stay in your pocket.


Common home buyer scams to avoid


The following frauds include phony or cunning buyers who try to persuade you that they wish to buy your house.


The overseas or foreign buyer


This buyer approaches you and begs for the chance to purchase your house through a website, an email, or even the mail. They say that although they are now abroad and won't be returning to the United States until a specific time, they urgently require housing. In order to secure the residence, they then offer to mail you a cashier's check.


This scam has been used for a very long time, not just with property sellers but also with landlords and high-value products on resale websites. After you put the cashier's check into your account and they call you a few days later with a pathetic tale of how their plans fell through, they request a refund.


In an effort to allay any concerns, they might even generously offer to let you keep a portion of the money as an apology.


The cashier's check won't have had enough time to bounce, but it definitely will! Usually, a few days after you return "their" money back.


The eager-beaver and unavailable buyer


Watch out for the impulsive buyer. Being enthusiastic about your house is one thing, but a buyer who seems overly anxious to deposit earnest money or a sizable down payment before seeing it could be a scam.


Be aware that some reputable buyers do make remote home purchases, especially during the pandemic. However, they usually have a representative who guides them through the house via video chat or bargains on their behalf. Your real estate agent can assist you in separating the genuine from the false in this situation.


The detail-overload buyer


This buyer starts off by providing you with comprehensive financial records and biographical data, far more than you might anticipate from a simple home selling request.


They might be eager to divulge a ton of fictitious financial information, but they might lack references, a social media following, or any other genuine identification.


The check-bungling buyer


This buyer claims they sent you too much money by mistake and will demand that you pay them back a portion of it when you deposit the check. They will say they had no intention of putting down so much money for the house. You're less cautious because you get to keep a piece of the payment.


However, the check will bounce in a few days, and you won't be able to get the money back that you sent them.


The bogus investor buyer


This "investment" buyer puts pressure on you to enter into a contract to buy your house. Typically, they won't provide references or deposit any earnest money. This is due to the fact that they are merely placing a contract on your home in the hopes of later selling it to another investor for a profit or finder's fee; they do not actually have the funds to purchase it.


You will have lost crucial time while your house was off the market if they are unable to resell the deal. Although you won't lose any money, you will waste time that you could have spent selling to a reliable customer.


The title or deed buyer


A homeowner who falls prey to a title or deed scam may literally have their home taken from beneath them. These con artists frequently steal your mail to gather private information and falsify signatures or other documents to take ownership of your property by assuming the title or deed. They might attempt to borrow money against your property.


Even while you can typically solve the issue, it is a costly procedure. Pay attention to any changes in your credit score, missing mail, or strangers on your property.


The foreclosure relief offer


A homeowner who falls prey to a title or deed scam may literally have their home taken from beneath them. These con artists frequently steal your mail to gather private information and falsify signatures or other documents to take ownership of your property by assuming the title or deed. They might attempt to borrow money against your property.


Even while you can typically solve the issue, it is a costly procedure. Pay attention to any changes in your credit score, missing mail, or strangers on your property.


Home buyers beware, and be empowered


Other frauds that homeowners may encounter are numerous. Regardless of the typical frauds, we have discussed in this blog, if you ever have a bad feeling while interacting with a possible buyer, trust it. Real buyers utilize agents, have a website and reviews, and don't use excessive pressure to persuade you to sign the contract.


Scammers take advantage of a house seller's lack of market knowledge. You can prevent being taken advantage of if you are aware of their strategies and are guided by a seasoned agent.




June 27, 2022

A Guide For Selling Your House Quickly

You'll need to think outside the box with your plans if you need to relocate soon for a new career or personal reasons to improve your chances of selling your home swiftly. The biggest worry is that putting a house on the market for more than a few weeks can give other purchasers the impression that there's something wrong with it. That might result in fewer offers, fewer interested buyers, and perhaps a lower sales price. 


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Fortunately, there are a few strategies you may employ to assist sell your old house quickly and enable you to move into a new one straight immediately.


Decide if you are ready to sell your home


A strong seller's market may tempt some people to take advantage of the opportunity to sell for top money. But the market shouldn't be the only factor considered when deciding to sell. The particulars of your needs and your financial status must also be taken into account. Here are some things to think about.


Can you afford the cost of selling your house?


The cost of selling your property is substantially higher, despite the fact that most consumers focus on the 6 percent real estate agent commission. Selling a house costs about 10 percent of the selling price. You have other costs to cover in addition to real estate commissions.


It might not be financially advantageous to sell your property if you haven't accrued enough equity. By deducting your mortgage balance from the probable sales price, you may determine your equity. You may also use a home selling process calculator to estimate the price your house will sell for. Take a look at properties that are comparable to yours in terms of home size, lot size, and improvements by taking into account local real estate comps.


Can you afford to buy a new house?


You should still think about how much it will cost to move into your new house. The majority of home sellers want to buy a home rather than return to their rental home, so you might find yourself in a competitive market where you need to move swiftly with your bids. Additionally, keep in mind that closing expenses for your new home, which are approximately 3% of the purchase price.


Is selling your house the best option?


Have you given any thought to the precise reasons behind your desire to sell your home? If not, now is the moment to decide what results you want to gain from selling your house. If you can accomplish the same results by renovating your property or by other means, be sure to think about what best suits your needs.


How to prepare for your home sale


Making a few simple preparations will help your home sell fast and for the highest possible price. You must get your home ready for buyers before your real estate agent lists it for sale. You need to promote your property for broad appeal, much like you would when showcasing products in a shop.


Find the right real estate agent for you


The most straightforward way to sell your home is to work with a real estate agent. Compared to alternative selling strategies, real estate brokers frequently secure greater sales prices for the sellers they represent. Furthermore, they are well knowledgeable about both the procedure and the market.


Creating a selling strategy


There are a few ways to quicken the home sale process.


Decide the right price to sell your home


Because buyers frequently look for properties inside a certain price range, your asking price affects the demographic of potential buyers you're targeting. It could also indicate the state of your house, such as the necessity for renovations if a house is offered below housing market value.


The market will determine the price. Comparable house sales are used by real estate brokers to determine the appropriate price for your home. The real estate agent looks at previous property sales in your community.


Create the best listing description


Your home's images and specs sheet are posted with a listing description on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), which is then visible on real estate websites. Your listing agent ought to be able to create a fantastic MLS description for your home.


Keywords that homebuyers are looking for, like "move-in-ready," are included in good listing descriptions.


Post your listing at the right time


According to research, Thursday is the ideal day to offer your property if you want to sell it quickly. This is due to the fact that buyers are getting ready to visit homes, usually on the weekends and usually starting with the newest listings.


Depending on your local market, your knowledgeable real estate agent might have extra advice to offer regarding the timing of a listing.


Accommodate showings as much as possible


There are a few typical methods you can display your house. Private showings, during which the buyer's agent guides the buyer through your home, are the most typical. The buyer typically finds this to be simpler. A realtor can also host an open house where several potential buyers, both with and without agents, are invited to view your home on a certain day and time. The seller will typically find this easier.


Incentivize potential buyers


Offer a closing cutoff date with a little bonus for the buyer to assist you close a house sale. Consider giving the buyer a seller's credit or even an additional commission to the buyer's agent if you need to conclude the deal swiftly for tax considerations.

June 20, 2022

Questions to Ask Your Agent Before You List Your Home for Sale

Asking your realtor is the best method to determine what pre-listing preparations your particular home needs. Finding a top-notch agent is actually the first step any seller should take because it will help them determine which improvements and repairs would yield the highest return on investment.


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Make sure your house is in excellent condition and appealing to buyers before marketing it if you want to take advantage of the equity in your home. In order to sell your home for the highest price, a real estate agent will know how to ensure that it becomes what buyers are searching for.


You must ask your agent these "To Do or Not to Do" questions (and what your agent will probably answer).


Should I Refurbish My Walls and Floors?


Yes. The answer to this query is always yes, unless your walls and flooring are brand-new, immaculate. If you didn't choose neutral colors, even new paint and new flooring might need to be redone.


You're in luck if you recently painted your walls a neutral hue like off-white, beige, or light gray within the past year. Your walls can be brought back to their newly painted state with just a thorough cleaning from baseboard to ceiling.


Focus on the primary living areas, such as the living room, kitchen, master bedroom, and bathroom where your buyer will spend the majority of their time, if the seller needs to repaint. If the wallpaper in certain areas is not neutral in color or design, you must also remove it.


Should I Deep Clean?


Speaking of cleaning, the answer to this query is always "yes" so you don't need to consult an authority.


A messy house gives potential purchasers the impression that the existing owner hasn't maintained it. They won't view themselves as the owners of your house in the future; instead, they'll be on the lookout for issues and believe that the house need more repairs than it actually does. Lowball bids will be made by buyers who believe your house might be a lemon, or they will simply walk away.


Normal cleaning is insufficient when you're trying to sell your home. You’ll need to deep clean everything.


Should I Declutter, Depersonalize and Start Packing?


Definitely, sure. Make sure the buyer is viewing your house, not you, at both open houses and private showings. Depersonalizing and decluttering your home are the best ways to accomplish this.


You'll also need to conceal all the eccentric furniture and junk that give your home its unique individuality, in addition to artifacts that display the names and faces of your family.


Sellers who are having problems selecting which decorative items to pack and which to use for home staging may just want expert assistance.


Should I Get Professional Staging and Photography?


For staging? Maybe. The value of your home will determine if staging is a good idea or not. Paying for staging may not be worthwhile for homeowners in lower price ranges, but it is essentially necessary for high-end properties.


However, the response is nearly invariably "yes" in professional photography. A staggering 83 percent of buyers begin their home search online, according to the NAR. Therefore, it is worthwhile to make that expenditure as the images serve as both the first impression that potential buyers have of the property and a decisive factor in luring a physical visit.


Should I Get a Pre-Listing Inspection?


It depends on the situation. A pre-listing inspection has the ability to both benefit and hinder the seller, so deciding how to proceed really requires an agent's skill.


Your buyer's inspector will discover any significant problems with your house that you suspect exist, such as poor wiring, malfunctioning plumbing, or broken roofing. When they do, you'll be on the hook for the repair fees as well as likely a reduction in the ultimate sale price.


It's best to identify and address significant concerns like these before you list so you can manage costs. Additionally, the higher the asking price will be for your home, the better condition it is in. It's advisable to wait if you don't believe there are any serious problems.


Should I Investigate My Home?


Yes. There are certain other reports and inspections you could need even though a thorough pre-listing inspection might not be the best course of action. It is the seller's obligation to ensure that their home complies with fire safety regulations, thus it is recommended to get one inspected before listing.


Should I Make Upgrades?


Maybe. Similar to the pre-listing inspection, this choice frequently boils down to your home's current market value.


You might discover that a succession of little improvements, such as changing the faucets, cabinet hardware, and window treatments, will add more value to your property than a single pricey project. As mismatched bulbs can make matching glass shades appear discolored, some repairs might even be as simple as changing the light bulbs in your fixtures.


Your best option is to prepare a list of the improvements you're willing to do, along with a budget, and show it to your realtor.


It takes a lot of work to sell a house, work that starts long before your house even hits the market. However, you'll be in the greatest position to obtain the most equity out of the sale of your property if you enlist the assistance of a knowledgeable realtor up front and put in the work before listing.

June 13, 2022

Tips to Negotiate When Selling a House in 2022

Negotiation combines the art of understanding human behavior with the competence of an experienced realtor who is well-versed in the current property market to help you get the best bargain possible.


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Sellers have been in the driver's seat since 2020, but will recent market shifts, such as increasing mortgage interest rates and rising property inventory, change the game?


Know the housing market


Due to the increasing demand for house since the pandemic, sellers have had the upper hand over buyers Top agents now believe that the market will begin to stabilize in the first quarter of 2022.


Keep your eye on the competition


Sellers must keep up with trends in comparable surrounding properties, often known as comps, to be competitive.


With that in mind, vendors should be aware of their competitors (that would be number one). To stay in the driver's seat, one must have the proper pricing, or else they will be chasing the market; one must be right on the cusp.


Enlist a top agent with rock-solid negotiation skills


A top agent who has closed numerous successful real estate transactions understands the difference between a good bargain and a bad one. Agents are aware of things like appraisal gaps and escalation clauses, so if you don't understand what's going on, you won't receive the best deal.


Keep your list of upgrades handy


Buyers frequently bring up flaws in a property as a means of negotiating a lower price. They may dislike the wallpaper, the color of the paint, or something else entirely. "Be ready to react by pointing out the advantages over the disadvantages to show that your home is worth the money."


That's what an agent's work is all about: compiling a long list of all the improvements and enhancements even before a buyer walks through the door to balance out any flaws.


Swap personal items for closing costs


A negotiation approach that might sometimes succeed is trading personal property for closing costs. When a buyer points out a flaw and tries to persuade the seller to pay closing expenses, the seller can counter with an equal-value item they don't care about (or want to move).


Waive the inspection contingency with a pre-sale inspection


The inspection contingency clause is one of the most significant deal-breakers. Pre-listing home inspections are recommended for sellers, especially in older homes, because inspection errors cause many purchasers to back out or postpone the sale. This allows merchants to anticipate problems.


A presale inspection is the best approach for a seller to acquire a lot of bids that aren't conditional on inspections.


If you don't want to undertake a pre-sale inspection or hire contractors for repairs, however, consider incorporating the cost of repairs into the closing.


Last-minute tips on how to negotiate when selling a house


You can put yourself in the driver's seat by making your home open for showings. This allows you to invite as many people in the door as possible. Maintaining control requires providing access.


Another strategy to stay in control is to receive immediate and positive feedback. If you're getting bad feedback, you can simply adjust the game and reestablish a pricing or fix something.


It is also a great help to always shoot great-looking images and communicate with your agent. 


At the end of the day, the deal is sealed by a personal relationship with the agent. You must get along and make things work in order to reach an agreement and a satisfactory conclusion.




June 6, 2022

Top Renovations to Boost Home Value in 2022: Offices and Outdoors Take the Lead

The epidemic shed a new light on our homes, causing a change in which upgrades increase property value. Our homes have evolved into spaces where we may unwind and recharge one moment, work without commuting the next, and "holiday" without leaving town when necessary.


Free Brown Wooden Ladder Beside Painting Materials Stock Photo


Buyers still value kitchens and bathrooms, but a home office and outside entertainment are now equally important. As the number-one cause for renovations in their market, they cite "the desire to make homes a shelter from the world."


Does remodeling increase home value?


Remodeling can be a good investment, but keep in mind that there's no assurance you'll get your money back. The average return on investment for renovating or remodeling a property is $7.44 for every dollar spent.


While you don't want to make renovation mistakes like adding ultra-specific fixtures and finishes, some upgrades now have a greater ROI due to consumer desire and pandemic-related concerns.


Consider the following improvements to boost the value of your home:


Boost your curb appeal


Curb appeal makes a big first impression on buyers, but now that more people are staying at home, it's more crucial than ever to show that you care about your home - and that you've taken good care of it.


You also don't have to put in a lot of money to gain the benefits. Buyers are willing to pay 7% extra for a home with exceptional curb appeal.


  • Pay attention to basic yard maintenance (cut grass, weed control, fertilization)
  • Three cubic yards of bark mulch should be spread (including delivery)
  • Clean up the yard (shrubs, walkway, and flower beds)


Add even more value to your offering price by looking beyond the greens. According to our agents, fresh exterior paint adds a 152 percent ROI, or around $7,600 in selling value. A new garage door provides a 133 percent return on investment (ROI), or around $2,800 in resale value.


Add livable square footage


Your evaluated value is often increased by adding livable square footage. Buyers, however, demand more of it in the current climate.


If you have a 400 to 1,500 square foot unfinished basement, installing flooring, drywall, and other finishing touches to make it habitable space can yield a 75 percent return on investment by converting it into a "specialty room," which more than 60 percent of purchasers want.



Add a double-sink bathroom vanity


Even if they're at home more often, potential buyers want to know that their bathroom can withstand those hectic weekday mornings. The double sink vanity is the most popular bathroom addition among today's buyers, according to our representatives.


When things become a bit too close for comfort, a double-sink vanity helps to define personal space in the bathroom. It's a psychological barrier that works well for both children and adults in households.



Install a kitchen island or walk-in pantry


Nowadays, it's more normal to have multiple individuals cooking at the same time, with varying food preparation and storage requirements. For 81 percent of buyers, a double kitchen sink or a walk-in pantry are important features.


All offer additional counter space for gadgets, unloading groceries or takeout, and preparing meals without touching elbows. They also recuperate a significant portion of the installation costs.


Build or convert a home office


Consider turning an existing walk-in pantry (or closet) into a home office if you don't cook frequently.


This type of conversion works great in a guest room, but it's also a good way to make use of the closet in a baby or toddler's room, where the clothing may be stored in a tiny dresser or wardrobe.


The beauty of a home office is that it does not have to resemble a cubicle. You can include natural surfaces and artistic artifacts into your home's décor.


Build a backyard ADU or in-law suite


In high-cost areas, an auxiliary dwelling unit (ADU) is a creative and economical housing alternative that can also be used to house extended family or generate rental income.


Make your mudroom bigger and more functional


A mudroom or foyer with a space to stash the day's clothing has long been a home design plus, especially in locations where keeping track of wintery shoes and boots is a necessary.


A laundry room, a central charging station for everyone's phones, and shelving or other designated storage for each family member are also popular amenities.


Renovations are on the rise, so invest wisely


Keeping up with what buyers want and what will assist you boost your resale value can help you decide where to concentrate your efforts. Consult a local real estate agent to learn which upgrades boost house value in your area, and then consider which ones will allow you to enjoy your space the most until you're ready to sell.



May 30, 2022

What Does It Mean to Downsize? The Benefits and Cons of Living in a Smaller Space

“The bigger the better!”

“More bang for your buck!”


Well, not anymore…


According to the National Association of Home Builders, new home sizes have been continuously decreasing since 2015. So, what exactly does it mean to downsize your residence?


Free Small light beige wooden chairs for rest on green lawn in yard of private house by tall trees with vibrant golden foliage in autumn Stock Photo


Less stuff, less space—in exchange for more freedom


Downsizing isn't a call to sell everything and purchase a 150-square-foot tiny house; rather, it's a recognition that you may no longer require all of this room and that you're ready to pare down your belongings and square footage.


If you can get used to living in a smaller space, you may find that smaller is better in terms of lifestyle freedom and economical benefits.


Downsizing for you could mean…



Cutting down on space to reduce your housing costs.


A smaller home may appear to be a significant financial hardship. You can minimize your financial obligations by downsizing, especially if you have student debts, ordinary home maintenance, and hidden housing costs eating away at your wage every month.


Making your mortgage more manageable.


Downsizing reduces the amount of time and money spent on a mortgage. If you're caught in a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage and your bills are mounting, downsizing could be a cost-effective way to get out.


You can put the money from the sale of your current property toward a smaller home in a less expensive area. This way, you'll profit from downsizing and be able to pay in cash or put down a higher down payment.


Paying down debt faster and building up your savings.


Money saved can be put towards a retirement fund. Financial consultants recommend that customers save 10% to 15% of their household income for retirement as a general rule. Start saving now with the extra $6,000 per year you'll save from a lower mortgage or the proceeds from your house sale.


Saying goodbye to home maintenance and electric bills!


It's impossible to avoid the fact that a larger house requires more maintenance—more dusting, vacuuming, and cleaning. Expect to spend less time on these chores if you reduce!


The hidden costs of owning a home also include home maintenance, which can cost up to $1,200 per month on average. You can decrease these costs in half by living in a smaller home with fewer rooms and bathrooms.


Downsizing helps to reduce utility expenditures, like as electricity and water usage, in addition to maintenance costs. A 1,000 square foot home's utility bill is often more than $200 less than a 3,000 square foot home's.


Thinking about your next location, location, location.


Downsizing can assist you relocate to a place where you don't have to travel vast distances or make daily preparations.


A lot of new construction is geared toward folks looking for a smaller home with a neighborhood feel. Check the current market of your target location and compare each neighborhood before you decide. 


Downsizing could also mean…


You'll have to adjust to a new environment and lifestyle wherever you decide to downsize. Your normal routine may be disrupted, and you may be forced to interact with new people (oh no!).


However, your expectations should be based on your reduction objectives.


Purging up to 50% of your current belongings


You'll have to adjust to a new environment and lifestyle wherever you decide to downsize. Your normal routine may be disrupted, and you may be forced to interact with new people (oh no!).


However, your expectations should be based on your reduction objectives.


Saying goodbye to a home you’ve lived in for years.


Larger homes typically have more storage space. You won't have the same amount of space to store all of your children's soccer trophies or your library of self-help books once you decide to downsize.


Downsizing is an emotionally draining process. The house is essential to the homeowners emotionally, and they've lived there for a long time. When packing things, you can't help but experience a sense of loss and nostalgia if you've lived here for decades. However, experiencing emotions via a different lens can make it simpler.


Maintain genuine connections with old acquaintances and family. Engage with your new community and look into activities you've always wanted to try near your new home. The loss is greater than you believe!


Losing the prestige of a bigger home.


You can't anticipate the same spacious luxury you're used to in a two-story house with a backyard and front porch when you downsize.


Don't worry, though—you can still downsize in style! Add a touch of grandeur to your living room without the need for 15-foot ceilings. A smaller house should not make you feel trapped. Sure, you won't have the same amount of space, but you may spend the money you saved on making the area more enjoyable.


Before you sell your home and move into a smaller one, ask yourself these questions to get you in the correct frame of mind and determine whether you're ready for this transition.


Expect the unexpected, but don't be alarmed. Everyone's circumstance is different, so consult with a trusted real estate agent to see whether this is the right option for you.


Downsizing can help you save money while also giving you the gift of a more manageable living.