Saturday, 24 January 2015
Four Keys to Selling Your Home Quickly
Spring is just around the corner, so if you're thinking about listing your home soon, you'll want to plan ahead. Many homes in the Brentwood, Tenn., area are selling quickly because there is such low inventory, but selling quickly is no guarantee if you and your home are not fully prepared to meet the expectations of eager buyers. Here are four keys that I believe you have to get right if you want to receive the best offers on your home.
1. Price Your Home Correctly
Even if real estate is moving quickly in your area, don't assume that you can overprice your home and get someone to pay your inflated price. You don't want to run off a potential buyer the first time they look up your home if you've mistakenly placed it in the wrong price range. Buyers are savvy. They know the general market value in the neighborhoods where they are looking. Banks are savvy too. They will never approve a loan on an overpriced home. Find a Realtor who will view comps in your area, and then work together with him or her to find the best, fair price that will bring in the offers. Click here for more thoughts on pricing from a previous post.
2. Create an Impressive Presence
As soon as you officially list your home, interested buyers need to know that it's available. The more people you have viewing your listing from different sources, the more people you will have contacting you and/or your agent for showings. It's important to diversify those listings and to put your best foot forward. I talk more about how a Realtor "works the market" for you in this post.
3. Show Them the "Wow" Factor Up Front
Most of the people viewing your listing will be doing so online, so it's imperative to make sure their first impression is a great one. The best way to do this is through high-quality pictures. Posting dark, random pictures from your phone will drive away the majority of your online viewers. They want to know what the house looks like before they see it in person, so make sure your home's features are highlighted well. I talk more about this in this previous post.
4. Avoid Common Turnoffs
Once you've hooked them online, you've got to keep them wowed once they pull into your driveway. When you have a showing, your home needs to look as though you are expecting an honored guest. Pick up the clutter. Eliminate odors. Help them see the beauty and charm of your home without them getting lost in your mess! Here are some more tips for avoiding buyer turnoffs.
I know what buyers want to see and experience because I've walked this road with them time and time again over the years. Please allow me to help you get your home sold quickly!
Posted on 01/24/2015 11:39 PM by Jarod
Tuesday, 13 January 2015
Eight Ways to Be Prepared for Closing Day
Many of my clients over the years have expressed stress over the unknowns of closing day. Although there can be unexpected things that come up at the last minute, I always try to coach and prepare my clients before they show up to sign closing documents and hand over big checks. This should be a day of celebration and not stress and worry, so here are a few things you should do to be prepared for the big day:
- Call your lender well before the closing date to make sure everything is nailed down to secure your funding. Most delays at closings happen because a bank is missing documents they need from the buyer.
- DO NOT. I repeat, DO NOT open up any new lines of credit for cars or credit cards or make large charges to existing lines of credit before your closing day. This can delay or cancel your closing.
- Complete your final walk-through with your agent and make sure the seller has completed all agreed-upon repairs. If something has not been done, make sure to point it out to your agent so he or she can contact the seller and get everything squared away before closing day.
- Ask to see your HUD-1 Settlement Statement and compare it to your Good Faith Estimate to make sure there are no major discrepancies in the list of fees that you will be expected to pay at your closing. Ask questions BEFORE closing day.
- Review the entire process with your lender, attorney, and/or agent so you are informed and ready to sign papers. The entire process takes 1-1.5 hours, but it will go quickly and smoothly if you already have an idea of what you're signing.
- The day before your closing, compile everything you need to bring with you so you are not running around last-minute. Important things to remember are: IDs for each buyer, proof of homeowners insurance, inspection reports, your good faith estimate, and a cashier's check made out to the settlement company for all closing costs. (Wire funds are also permitted, but personal checks are generally not.)
- Last but not least, make sure everyone who needs to be there to represent you and your interests (agent, lender, closing agent, title company representative, and attorney if applicable) knows the time and place of this important meeting!
- Please make sure you have made arrangements for Utilities to be transferred in to or out of your name the day of closing, unless transfer dates have been agreed upon by both parties in writing.
Closing day should be a fun day! I have years of experience in real estate closings, and I'd love to walk you through the entire process and celebrate with you as you take your keys!
Photo credit: freedigitalphotos.net
Posted on 01/13/2015 11:53 PM by Jarod
Friday, 2 January 2015
How to Protect Your Home During Cold Weather
Happy New Year, friends!! I hope that 2015 will bring you many blessings!
Winter has settled into Middle Tennessee. This coming Sunday night will usher in a really cold week with temperatures dropping down near single digits by mid-week! As you brace yourself for the cold, you should also consider bracing your home for the freezing temperatures. I had a great response from this blog I wrote last year on protecting your home's water pipes from costly repairs:
Pipes become very vulnerable in cold weather, so start by doing an exterior, crawl space, basement, and attic check to see if you find any pipes that are exposed. If so, attaching insulated sleeves to these pipes, which can be found at any hardware store, is a great start to protecting your home. Also check to see if there are any cracks or holes that might have been made for cable or other hookups over the years. Seal any of these openings after you've added extra insulation.
While you're outside, you should unhook, drain, and put away any hoses. Irrigation systems are also at risk for damage, and there are several things you can do to prevent a big mess in your yard. This link contains a PDF with very detailed instructions if you want to do it yourself, or you can call a professional to show you how.
Inside, the biggest concern should be those faucets that face an outside wall, especially an outside northern wall, as those usually receive the biggest blasts of cold air. For many, that is usually the kitchen sink. On those subfreezing nights, open the cabinet doors so the heat from your home will circulate around those pipes. Also, keep the faucet on a slow drip. This method doesn't keep the pipes from freezing, but it does release the pressure, which is what actually causes pipes to burst.
If you turn on your water the next morning and the flow is slow or stops, you have a frozen pipe and you need to call the plumber before you have a mess on your hands. His service fee is much cheaper than his service fee plus water damage. If a pipe should burst, quickly turn off the main water supply to your home and leave faucets open until the repair has been made.
If you are a do-it-yourselfer, use caution when trying to warm up your pipes. Never use an open flame! Hair dryers and heating pads applied to the pipes can help, but use caution with your electrical sources around water.
Using preventative measures during the freezing cold days ahead can save you a lot of money and headaches. Your homeowners insurance or warranty may cover most of the costs of a busted pipe, but they will not cover the huge inconvenience of cleaning up the mess and possibly being displaced from your home.
Stay warm, my friends!
Photo credit: freedigitalphotos.net
Posted on 01/02/2015 4:22 PM by Jarod