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Tips for Living in Your Home While You Sell It

June 1, 2016

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Selling your home can be an overwhelming process, especially if you are still living in the home while it’s for sale. Here are a few simple tips for living in your home while it’s on the market:

1. Start packing now. The secret to making your house clutter-free is getting rid of all the things you can live without. Store it, chuck it, or donate it – just get anything you don’t need out of the house while it’s on the market. You will get a head start on moving and buyers will see how spacious your home really is.

2. Make sure your home is squeaky clean. Lacking motivation to dust every cobweb off the ceiling fan or to scrub the floor? Keep this in mind: A squeaky clean house can net you $5,000 to $10,000 more on your home sale. When you’re cleaning windows, vacuuming carpets, and wiping down counters, aim for five-star hotel perfection.

3. Maintain your privacy and safety. People will look through your drawers, closets, and medicine cabinets during open houses and showings. Don’t keep anything in your house that you don’t want anyone else to see, and protect your valuables. Use common sense. When in doubt, lock it up.

4. Clear your schedule. Make your home available for all showings, especially during your first week on the market, as that is typically when you will see the most buyer activity. Increase your chances of getting an offer by allowing all potential buyers to come through the front door.

These tips will make it easier for you to live in your home while it’s for sale while increasing your chances of getting an offer. If you have any questions, give us a call or send us an email. We would be happy to help you!

Seven Ways to Ensure Success When Becoming a Landlord

April 26, 2016

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Looking to buy a home? Search all homes for sale

Are you planning on becoming a landlord? If so, keep these seven handy tips in mind:

  1. Know the area you are going to invest in. You should try to buy your first investment property somewhere close to where you live.
  2. Know your landlord/tenant laws. There are federal laws, municipality requirements, and many other rules and regulations you must adhere to.
  3. Enforce that rent is paid on time. Set expectations up front with your tenants. If you start becoming easy going about when rent is due, it will become a regular occurrence.
  4. Screen potential clients. Run a background and reference check to ensure you don’t have a problem tenant.
  5. Customize the lease. Leases can be just as unique as the properties. You want to make sure you have the right verbiage in the lease that will state what you’re going to be doing with your rental property.
  6. Inspect the property regularly. Schedule routine visits to the property to ensure there aren’t any ongoing issues that are going unaddressed.
  7. Don’t expect to get rich quick. Make sure you have a long-term tenant or property setup, the right process, if you want to make money being a landlord.

We follow through with our plans on a daily basis.

 

If you have any questions about this topic, or if you need real estate assistance of any kind, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We would love to hear from you!

Important Questions Buyers Should Ask in Today’s Market

April 6, 2016

Looking to sell your home? Get a FREE home value report

Looking to buy a home? Search all homes for sale

Clients always approach me about what they should ask during an open house. Today, I’ll review a comprehensive list of important questions to ask a seller’s agent.

 

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  • Have there been any offers? That will give you an idea how much activity the property receives.
  • How stable has the price been? Has it had a price reduction or any similar changes?
  • How long has the property been on the market? This will tell you if the listing has sat on the MLS for a period of time. Additionally, you might see a home reenter the market that’s already been previously listed.
  • When does the buyer want to move? The time frame is vital information to your timeline, and sometimes the seller will pick an offer based on the date alone.
  • What issues accompany the house? You should have a seller’s disclosure available, but you want to inquire about things you can’t see. For instance, this accounts for the roof, plumbing, and electricity.
  • When was the house last updated? This will reveal if you’ll need to address older items and features inside the home.
  • What are the average utility costs? Buyers often don’t understand how interior systems work, and end up unhappy with an expensive utility bill once they’re moved in.
  • What does the neighborhood look like? Ask where you can eat out and where the closest train station is. Are the neighbors friendly?

 

Realtors, like myself, are responsible for answering these questions correctly if the buyer can’t. These are only a few important questions to keep in mind while on the home search. If you’re thinking about buying or selling in the Greater Philadelphia area, I’m here as your real estate resource. Give me a call or send me an email with any questions you might have!

Important Questions Buyers Should Ask in Today’s Market

April 5, 2016

Looking to sell your  home? Get a FREE home value report

Looking to buy a  home? Search all homes for sale

Clients always approach me about what they should ask during an open house. Today, I’ll review a comprehensive list of important questions to ask a seller’s agent.

 

feb-1-pullquote

 

  • Have there been any offers? That will give you an idea how much activity the property receives.
  • How stable has the price been? Has it had a price reduction or any similar changes?
  • How long has the property been on the market? This will tell you if the listing has sat on the MLS for a period of time. Additionally, you might see a home reenter the market that’s already been previously listed.
  • When does the buyer want to move? The time frame is vital information to your timeline, and sometimes the seller will pick an offer based on the date alone.
  • What issues accompany the house? You should have a seller’s disclosure available, but you want to inquire about things you can’t see. For instance, this accounts for the roof, plumbing, and electricity.
  • When was the house last updated? This will reveal if you’ll need to address older items and features inside the home.
  • What are the average utility costs? Buyers often don’t understand how interior systems work, and end up unhappy with an expensive utility bill once they’re moved in.
  • What does the neighborhood look like? Ask where you can eat out and where the closest train station is. Are the neighbors friendly?

 

Realtors, like myself, are responsible for answering these questions correctly if the buyer can’t. These are only a few important questions to keep in mind while on the home search. If you’re thinking about buying or selling in the Greater Philadelphia area, I’m here as your real estate resource. Give me a call or send me an email with any questions you might have!

How Low Inventory Affects Real Estate Consumers In Today’s Market

February 29, 2016

Looking to sell your  home? Get a FREE home value report
Looking to buy a  home? Search all homes for sale

In today’s housing marketplace, we’re currently experiencing a shortage of inventory. This has created great opportunities for sellers. At the same time, it makes it more challenging for buyers. Particularly, we have some clients looking for their dream home, but nothing has popped up recently.

This is a huge change from previous markets, which wasn’t that long ago. A few years ago, there was a credit crisis and homeowners were underwater with their mortgages. There was an abundance of short sales and foreclosures going on. Luckily, that’s all behind us now.

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Our market is fully recovered right now and it looks amazing. This could be the year to earn top dollar for your home! Home values and sales have increased. Meanwhile, distressed sales, short sales, and foreclosures have dropped dramatically. Additionally, we anticipate strong buyer demand to last all year long, especially with a 4% interest rate. If you’ve been considering listing your home, now is the opportunity. Buyers are hungry for new listings and there are few homes to compete with.

Give me a call or send me an email if you think now is the time. I’d be happy to answer any of your questions, in addition to providing your home’s market value. I look forward to hearing from you!

How to Win a Bidding War in Today’s Market

February 18, 2016

Looking to sell your  home? Get a FREE home value report
Looking to buy a  home? Search all homes for sale

Often, clients inquire whether a home will receive multiple offers. If this home is priced correctly and is in excellent condition, the answer is yes. There are a few ways to win in a multiple offer situation:

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  • Get pre-approved. Handle the finances ahead of time and get approved. This shows sellers you’re qualified to purchase the property.
  • Offer a high down payment. The more the money, the better it gravitates a seller towards your offer. It makes you look confident and committed.
  • Ensure your paperwork is organized. This will make you look better than someone that doesn’t have their paperwork organized and ready to present
  • Negotiate effectively. This is the least relevant to you as a buyer, since your agent should guide you during the negotiation period.
  • Keep your contingencies reasonable. If you know a home is newer and doesn’t need an inspection, there are certain aspects to consider. You might need to add an escalation clause.
  • Write a letter to the sellers. Express how much their home resonates with you and how fitting it will be for your family.
  • Meet the settlement date. This in itself has monetary value. Sellers want their needs met without a hassle.

These tips can help you amp up your credentials in a multiple offer situation. Reach out to me if you have any questions or are interested in buying or selling a home! Call or email me today.

House Hunting During the Winter in Greater Philadelphia

December 28, 2015

 

Looking to sell your Greater Philadelphia Area home? Get a FREE home value report

Looking to buy a Greater Philadelphia Area home? Search all homes for sale

During this time of year, people always ask me how to prepare for the spring market. I have some tips to share to help you get a head start on that. It’s best to start house hunting now during the winter. You have an advantage in the winter compared to the springtime.

 

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  • People have more time right now. During the off-season, prospective buyers have more time on their hands to browse and research listings. There’s not a lot of real estate activity going on, but there are definitely buyers looking during the holidays.
  • You get more attention. Brokers are busy with multiple buyers during the warmer months. You don’t experience this kind of market this time of year, so in return, you receive more attention from a real estate professional.
  • Gain easier access to properties. Because there are fewer buyers in the market, it’s easier to schedule a viewing. You have the opportunity to take your time. Plus, homes look more decorated during the holidays.
  • You have time to relax. This helps you make an educated decision about your potential purchase. When you move during the holidays, you don’t have to worry about getting back to work right away.

If you factor in all of these things in, you can get a head start on the buying process. If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home, we’d be happy to help serve you! Give us a call or email today.