Moving Up Into Something Bigger and Better – the Unparalleled Buying Opportunity of Today

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Are you an existing homeowner?  Have you been silently waiting and watching for the best time to buy up and get something better for your money?  After waiting nearly five years after the big real estate meltdown in 2007, now seems to be the best time yet to get in on the action.  Though many buyers are still wary of getting their feet wet with a mortgage during these still uncertain times, the very reason there are fewer buyers contributes to it being a soft market.  And before the market changes, now is the perfect time to seize this great opportunity that may not be around for too much longer.

It’s Not What It All Seems

One of the reasons many homeowners are reluctant to move into a new home and sell their existing home is that the false impression created by the national market statistics paints an obscure picture.  Contrary to what the media often portrays, foreclosures and short sales do not dominate the market in most areas.  While there are certain harder hit states like Florida, Michigan, California and Arizona – where there is a much larger number of distressed properties on the market, the truth is that many states have begin stabilizing.

More Bang For Your Buck

For homeowners that do take the plunge and sell their home despite it selling for a lower than ideal price, they end up walking away from the bargaining table with a far better home for the same monthly payment – and they are left with equity in their home.  Keep in mind that while you will have had to sell your home for a lower price, the home you are buying will also be sold for a lower price.  Factor in seller concessions, low down payment requirements and the unbelievably low interest rates – and you have got the deal of a lifetime!

Affordability That Allows More House

Many homeowners gauge whether or not they can afford a home based on the amount of payment they must make each month.  Given the historic low interest rates coupled with depressed housing values – the monthly payment for many homeowners that are buying up remains the same.  In essence, by taking advantage of the current market, you are able to live in a bigger and better home for the same monthly payment as before.

Who Knows How Long This Will Last

As we all witnessed in early 2007, anything can happen in real estate and it can be the most unsuspecting occurrence ever.  For those homeowners that are waiting around for interest rates to go even lower or housing values to drop even further – they may very well shoot themselves in the foot. Be careful not to wait too long.  Industry analysts are already reporting stabilization in many markets, leading to a forecast of steady incline of interest rates.  Housing values may drop a few more percent at best – but there is no way to tell when that point hits until they begin climbing again.
Rather than finding yourself regretting not buying up when the opportunity was ripe – take the time to explore your options today.  You might be surprised.  Who knows – you may even find your dream home!

20 Things You Can Do To Get Your Home To Sell Faster

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Want to have the upper hand on your selling competition?  Follow these 20 tips and watch your house sell faster than you can say, “SOLD!”

Apply a fresh coat of paint – try to use neutral colors that would appeal to most palates and would easily blend with most buyers’ tastes.

Stage the home –a buyer ideally should be able to envision living in the space. Set things up in a way that allow fluidity and extra space because better flow will be more attractive to prospective buyers and it will also allow them to see everything there is to see in the home.

Remove all traces of personalization – too many personal artifacts can hinder a sale because buyers can’t see the home for what it is. Keep things clean and try to set things up as you might see a home in professional photographs.

Steam clean all fabric surfaces – without realizing it, many homeowners neglect to clean much-needed areas and it costs them a sale.  Grungy surfaces will be cleaned, and it will also freshen up the space plus eliminate any odors from smoking or pets.

Replace less-than-perfect carpet – if you can afford it replacing stained carpet is a small investment that will go a long way.

Fix any loose ends – there are a surprising number of small things around the house that need repairing – usually items that can pop up during the buyer’s home inspection.  By working to address these items in advance, you save lots of time.

Decorate using neutral colors – neutral colors allow a buyer to imagine their own color palates rather than have to attempt to see through the homeowner’s tastes.

Provide incentives – pay for homeowners’ insurance for a year or leave existing paid for contracts of home-maintenance so that the new homeowners can use them till the contracts end.

Market the property using multiple marketing tools – Deviate from the standard listing practices and move toward the use of technological advances. Engage in proactive marketing such as using YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, 360-degree panoramic videos, individual property websites, instant real-time communication with prospects and more.

Hire a top-producing Realtor – the person you hire as your real estate agent will be a decision that will largely impact your success.  Top-producing Realtors usually have a wide network of associates, colleagues, business and person acquaintances as well as vendors and suppliers – all very useful to sellers.

Spruce up the curb appeal– The way a home looks from the moment one sees it is a very important impression on the buyer.  Neaten up messy flowerbeds, get rid of weeds, make sure the grass is watered and check the function of your storm door or entry-area. 

Put out a new welcome mat at the front door– nothing says, “buy me” more than the feeling of warm, cozy and being welcome.  A nice welcome mat is a small expense but it has a large impact as the first impression.

Allow easy and frequent access to your home for showing – provide prospective buyers ample opportunity to access your home.  The last thing you want is for a buyer to be interested only to lose that interest if they can’t see the home quickly.

Be willing to negotiate – Don’t be hung up on the price or the concessions you offered from the start.  If the feeling is right, be willing to come down a bit on price or give a little more concessions.

Price it right – Here is a great article on Trulia about the 7 Deadly Sins of Overpricing  your property. 
Leave in the extras – Buyers are attracted to homes that have major appliances included in the deal – simple.

Get a pre-sell home inspection and address any issues – A move-in read y home is clearly going to be the first choice for buyers.

Offer to pay part of the closing costs – it takes concessions to appease the savvy buyers of today.

Give your pets a new home– Pet smells is a turnoff to someone considering your home.  Consider moving it temporarily until the open house and/or showing period is over.

Highlight the home’s best features – If your home’s open floor plan and a great crosswind are fabulous then do your best to show them off.  It will definitely be a selling factor giving you an edge over your competitors.