Louise Lingerman's Blog
Finding the ideal home for your family's needs is no easy task, but if you stay organized and focused, the right property is sure to come along!
One of your most valuable resources in your search for a new home is an experienced real estate agent -- someone you trust and feel comfortable working with.
They'll not only set up appointments for you to visit homes in your desired price range and school district, but they'll also help keep you motivated, informed, and on track. Once you know and have shared your requirements (and "wish list") with them, your agent will be able to guide you on a path to finding the home that will best serve your needs -- both short- and longer term.
In addition to proximity to jobs, good schools, and childcare, you'll probably want to pick a location that's close to supermarkets, recreation areas, and major highways. If you have friends or family in the area, then that would also be a key consideration.
While your immediate needs are a good starting point for creating a checklist of requirements, it's also a good idea to give some thought to what you may need in the future. Plans to expand your family, possibly take care of aging parents, or adopt pets are all factors to consider when looking at prospective homes to buy.
If you have college-age children or recent graduates in the family, you might have to save room for them in your new house. Many grads need a couple more years of financial and moral support from their parents (not to mention home-cooked meals) before they're ready to venture out on their own. Houses with a finished basement, a separate in-law apartment, or even a guest cottage on the property are often well-suited for multigenerational households.
In many cases, people tend to buy a home based on their emotional reaction to it, and then justify the purchase with facts. For example, if the price was right and a particular house reminded you of your childhood home, then that combination of elements could prompt you to make an offer on the house -- assuming those childhood memories were happy!
Sometimes prospective buyers might simply love the look and feel of a neighborhood or the fact that there's a spacious, fenced-in back yard in which they can envision their children or dogs happily (and safely) playing.
According to recent surveys, today's buyers are attracted to homes that have energy efficient features, separate laundry rooms, and low-maintenance floors, counter tops, and backyard decks. Gourmet kitchens, stainless steel appliances, a farmhouse sink, a home office area, and outdoor living spaces are also popular features. Although your tastes may differ, many house hunters also like design elements such as subway tiles, hardwood floors, shaker cabinets, pendant lights, and exposed brick.
When it comes to choosing the home that you and your family will live in for the next few years, your top priorities will probably include a sufficient amount of space, plenty of convenience, and a comfortable environment in which you and your loved ones can feel safe, secure, and happy for the foreseeable future!
A home seller must consider the initial asking price of his or her residence closely. Because if a home seller sets an unrealistic initial asking price, he or she risks alienating potential buyers.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you set a realistic initial asking price for your house.
1. Review the Local Housing Market
The local housing market may favor buyers or sellers. Fortunately, if you analyze the local housing sector, you can differentiate a buyer's market from a seller's market – or vice-versa – and price your house accordingly.
In a buyer's market, there is an abundance of quality residences and a shortage of buyers. And if you're operating in a buyer's market, you may need to price your house aggressively to stir up interest in it.
Comparatively, in a seller's market, there is a shortage of quality residences and an abundance of buyers. In a seller's market, you may be able to generate lots of interest in your house, even if you set an above-average price for it.
Regardless of whether you're operating in a buyer's or seller's market, you should assess housing sector data. Find out how your residence stacks up against available houses in your city or town that are similar to your own. Then, you may be better equipped than ever before to set a competitive initial asking price for your home.
2. Conduct a Home Inspection and Appraisal
By performing a home inspection, you can receive comprehensive insights into your house's condition. Following an inspection, you can prioritize home repairs. Plus, you can use an inspection report to help you determine how to price your residence.
In addition, you can conduct a home appraisal prior to listing your residence. Thanks to an appraisal, you can receive a property valuation. And as a result, you can use this property valuation to price your house appropriately.
3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent
A real estate agent understands the ins and outs of the housing market. Thus, he or she can help you establish the right price for your house.
Ultimately, a real estate agent is unafraid to be honest with a house seller. He or she will teach a seller about the housing market and provide unbiased recommendations about how to price a residence. Best of all, a real estate agent will promote a house to prospective buyers and ensure a seller can get the best price for his or her home.
Let's not forget about the assistance that a real estate agent can provide during a negotiation, either. A real estate agent is happy to negotiate with a buyer on your behalf. As such, a real estate agent can help you optimize your house sale earnings.
For a home seller who wants to determine the right price for his or her house, it helps to prepare as much as possible. If you take advantage of the aforementioned tips, you can establish a competitive initial asking price for your home and boost the likelihood of enjoying a fast, profitable house selling experience.
Believe it or not, selling a home may prove to be expensive if you are not careful. However, if you understand the costs associated with selling a house, you can budget accordingly.
Now, let's take a look at three expenses that home sellers commonly encounter.
1. Home Repairs
Cracked siding, floor damage and other home issues are worrisome, particularly for an individual who wants to sell his or her residence as quickly as possible. Fortunately, if you budget for home repairs, you can address these issues before you list your residence.
Oftentimes, it helps to conduct a home inspection prior to embarking on the house selling journey. A home inspection enables a property owner to gain expert insights into any underlying problems with his or her house. Then, the property owner can prioritize assorted home repairs and complete house improvements as needed.
2. Home Cleaning
A messy home is unlikely to garner buyers' attention. On the other hand, an individual who hires a professional cleaning company to improve his or her residence's appearance may be better equipped than ever before to enjoy a successful house selling experience.
Hiring a professional cleaning company may be costly. Yet if you shop around for home cleaning companies in your city or town, you can find a cleaning business that matches your budget.
Don't forget that you can clean your house on your own, too. If you purchase cleaning supplies and enlist family members and friends to help you clean your residence, you could enhance your residence's appearance without breaking your budget.
3. Home Staging
The cost of staging a house varies based on the size of a residence, the extent of the staging and other factors. But if you allocate time and resources to declutter your residence, you may be able to avoid the costs associated with house staging altogether.
To declutter your residence, you should try to remove any unwanted items from your home. You can list these items online or host a yard sale to eliminate clutter and earn extra cash. Or, you can donate your unwanted items to a local charity or give them to family members or friends.
As you get set to sell your house, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. With a real estate agent at your side, you can cut down on your house selling expenses and get the help you need to achieve your desired results.
A real estate agent understands that each house is different, and he or she crafts a custom strategy for each home seller. Next, a real estate agent and a home seller work together to put this plan into action. And if a seller ever has concerns or questions during the house selling journey, a real estate agent is happy to respond to them.
Plan ahead for home selling costs – you will be glad you did. Because if you budget properly, you can put yourself in a great position to streamline the home selling journey.
Congratulations on your recent home sale! Now, you just need to figure out how to tell family members, friends and other loved ones that you'll be packing up and moving out of your current residence.
Informing loved ones about a home sale may seem challenging at first. Fortunately, we're here to help you keep your cool as you tell loved ones that you've sold your house.
Here are three tips to ensure you can avoid the stress and headaches sometimes associated with informing loved ones about your decision to sell your home.
1. Get Ready for Questions
Loved ones have your best interests in mind, and as such, likely will have many questions about why you sold your residence.
What prompted you to sell your home now? How much did you receive for your home? And where do you plan to live in the future? These are just some of the questions that you should be ready to face from family members, friends and other loved ones.
Moreover, answer loved ones' questions as best you can. And if you are uncertain or uncomfortable about answering a question, you can politely decline to respond.
2. Keep an Open Mind
Things will move quickly after you sell your home. Although you may have plans to buy a new residence or relocate out of state at some point, you might still need time to finalize your next move.
Oftentimes, loved ones may pressure you to move in a certain direction following your home sale. But it is essential to keep the best interests of yourself and your family in mind at all times.
If family members or friends pressure you to make a move that makes you feel uncomfortable, let them know. Remember, your loved ones want you to be happy, and they should be willing to listen to your concerns after you share the news that you have sold your residence.
3. Operate Fearlessly
After you accept a homebuyer's offer for your residence, the toughest part of the home selling journey is over. At this point, you can finalize your home sale and move forward with the next stage of your life.
It takes a lot of courage to sell a house, and you should maintain this confidence as you tell loved ones about your home selling decision.
Regardless of how a loved one feels about your decision to sell your house, what's most important is how you feel about your choice. If you believe you made the best decision possible, you should feel good, even if family members or friends disagree.
When it comes to telling loved ones about your home selling decision, don't forget to reach out to your real estate for assistance. This real estate professional understands the challenges of informing family members and friends about a home selling decision and may be able to offer expert guidance. That way, you can remain poised and confident as you share your home selling news with others.
If you plan to sell your house, you likely will want to do everything you can to maximize its value. Lucky for you, we're here to help you obtain the best offer for your house, regardless of whether you're operating in a buyer's or seller's market.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you get the best price for your residence.
1. Enhance Your House's Curb Appeal
Curb appeal is a difference-maker for any home seller, at any time. If you allocate time and resources to boost your house's curb appeal, you may be able to differentiate your residence from the competition. Perhaps most important, improving your home's curb appeal may help you increase the likelihood of a fast, profitable home selling experience.
To improve your house's curb appeal, you should mow the front lawn, trim the hedges and perform any necessary home exterior upgrades. Consider the homebuyer's perspective, and you're sure to find lots of ways to enhance your house's appearance.
In addition, if you need help with home exterior upgrades, there is no need to stress. Many home improvement professionals are available in cities and towns nationwide, and these professionals are happy to help you transform your home's exterior from drab to fab.
2. Determine the Current Value of Your Home
A home appraisal may prove to be exceedingly valuable, particularly for a seller who wants to establish a competitive initial asking price for his or her house.
During a home appraisal, a property expert will examine a residence both inside and out. This expert also will evaluate various housing market data. Then, the property expert will provide a property valuation based on the appraisal results.
Once you receive a property appraisal report, you'll have a good idea about the current value of your residence. You next can use a property valuation to set a competitive price for your home from day one of the house selling journey.
3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent
As you look for ways to earn as much money as possible from your home sale, you may want to consider working with a real estate agent. Because if you have a real estate agent at your side, you can receive plenty of support at each stage of the home selling journey.
A real estate agent understands what it takes to optimize the value of a home. First, he or she will meet with you and learn about your house selling goals. A real estate agent then will help you determine the ideal initial asking price for your residence and promote your house to potential buyers. And if you receive an offer to purchase, a real estate agent will provide a recommendation about how to proceed.
Want to achieve the best-possible results during the home selling journey? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can move one step closer to maximizing the value of your house.