Our Real Estate Blog
You're off to a good start if your house is designed with popular, modern amenities like crown molding, newly laid hardwood floors, a kitchen pantry, master bedroom en suite and a kitchen island. Your home already has features that people appreciate and gravitate toward.
Amenities and products home buyers love
Put your house on the market and you could receive thousands more for your home than you would if your house didn't have these amenities. Yet, you could increase your home value even more, perhaps by thousands more. And despite what you might be thinking, you won't need a hammer, wood or nails to add more value to your home.
To raise your home value, add products that people have long respected. Some of these items are pricey. But, the pricier items could easily add more value to your home than they cost. And here the products are:
- Piano - Leading the way is the shiny, black grand piano. At the top of the line, a grand piano easily cost as much as a house. Even if home buyers don't play the piano, you could get more for your house simply because there's a quality piano in it.
- Jacuzzi - It's not as popular as it was years ago. But, a Jacuzzi is still a great relaxer. It's also a great social and conversation piece.
- Laundry room - Pushing a washer and dryer into the corner of a room doesn't count. The laundry room should at least be as large as a walk in closet. A family size washer and dryer should fit comfortably inside the room. So too should three to six shelves.
- Screened in porch - Bring a sofa, two chairs and a table onto the porch. The space should feel comfortable, as welcoming as your living room or den.
- Entertainment center - Leave a high definition, wide screen television in your house post sale and you might start receiving more bids. Build a full size entertainment center with television, popcorn machine, billiards or pool table and theater chairs and your home value generally goes up more.
- Home office - Telecommuting has increased. People who work from home appreciate knowing that they won't have to spend money to design a home office after they move.
- Gym - Turn half of your basement into a gym, adding a treadmill, rowing machine and dumb bells. Use the other side of your basement as your entertainment or media center.
Share amenities and household products that you love with others
Amenities are as big a part of a house as the actual structure of a home. Get the right amenities and you'll get more than compliments from visitors about your house. You may receive competitive bids when you put your house on the market.
When it comes to raising your home value, even easier than amenities are the right products. These products celebrate the arts, convenience and possibilities. It very well may be these takeaways that home buyers appreciate most about these products. You can love them too, even as you prepare to part with the products during an impending home sale.
As a homebuyer, it is important to set high expectations. At the same time, a homebuyer must act reasonably, or he or she risks missing out on a golden opportunity to acquire the perfect residence.
Ultimately, becoming a reasonable homebuyer can be quick and easy – here are three tips to help you do just that.
1. Establish Realistic Expectations for the Homebuying Journey
The homebuying journey sometimes can take weeks or months to complete, and a homebuyer should plan accordingly. By doing so, a homebuyer can prepare for any potential homebuying pitfalls.
For example, a homebuyer may submit an offer on a home and receive a "Yes" from a home seller. But if a home inspector discovers myriad problems with a residence, a homebuyer may need to walk away from the house and restart the homebuying journey.
In the aforementioned scenario, a homebuyer may become frustrated and annoyed, and for good reason. Conversely, if a homebuyer understands the challenges associated with buying a house, he or she can plan for the best- and worst-case scenarios.
2. Search for Homes That Fall Within Your Price Range
Have you established a budget for your home search? If not, you may wind up focusing on houses that you won't be able to afford.
Get pre-approved for a home loan – you'll be glad you did. With a home loan in hand, you can enter the real estate market with a homebuying budget. Then, you'll be able to narrow your home search to houses that fall within your price range, thereby speeding up your search for the ideal residence.
It won't take long to get pre-approved for a home loan, either. In fact, if you meet with local banks and credit unions, you can instantly learn about a variety of home loan options.
3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent
Although you know that you want to buy a house, you have no idea what to expect during the homebuying journey. Fortunately, if you hire a real estate agent, you can learn what it takes to stay calm, cool and collected as you search for a house.
A real estate agent is a housing market expert who takes pride in his or her work. As such, a real estate agent will be available to respond to your homebuying concerns and questions, ensuring that you can make an informed home purchase.
Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will go above and beyond the call of duty to eliminate homebuying hurdles.
For instance, a real estate agent is happy to negotiate with a seller's agent on your behalf, guaranteeing that you can avoid the stress of negotiating a home price. Or, if you need help finding a qualified home inspector, real estate attorney or other local professionals, your real estate agent can provide honest, unbiased recommendations.
Be reasonable as you kick off your search for your dream residence. That way, you can seamlessly navigate the homebuying journey and improve your chances of acquiring a house that matches or exceeds your expectations.
In times of rising temperatures and growing concerns of climate change, many of us are looking for small ways we can make a difference in our everyday lives. What better place to start than your own home?
It can be overwhelming to plan drastic eco-friendly changes to your home. That’s why we’ve broken these tips down room-by-room so that you can make changes in just one area and then build from there. Starting small will help you see your environmentally-minded project through to the finish.
Read on for tips for each room of your home to make your life more eco-friendly.
We’ll start with a small and easy one: the bedroom. Odds are your bedroom isn’t hogging too much power or creating a lot of waste. However, there are a few small changes you can make that will help you save some money while helping out the environment.
If your bedroom tends to get chilly at night, try using insulating curtains to help keep the cool air from slipping in through the windows. Similarly, on hot days close the curtains at peak sunlight hours to keep the bedroom cool. This small change could save you from having to turn up the heat or air conditioner when you enter your room each night.
The next time you clean out your closet, bring your items to a local thrift store or charity drop-off. You can even ask for a receipt which will make your donation tax-deductible. This way your clothes can extend their lives and stay out of a landfill a bit longer, and you’ll be helping out someone who could use the clothing.
Kitchen appliances offer a lot of opportunity for energy and water waste. When shopping for appliances, seek out appliances that meet Energy Star standards.
When it comes to water, forego the plastic bottles and buy a glass or metal refillable water bottle. Tap filters can greatly improve the taste, and you might find after a few days that you don’t even notice the water tasting differently.
Consider composting kitchen scraps in a composting bin. You can later use this for fertilizing plants in your yard and garden. And, finally, be sure you’re recycling all of your empty food and beverage containers.
Is your living room your entertainment center? If so, many of your devices, like cable boxes and streaming media devices, might continue running on “standby mode” wasting electricity. To prevent this, simply plug all of your devices into a power strip and turn it off at night.
Start by using refillable hand soap containers rather than buying a new one each time you run out. This will save you a lot of money in the long run and save you trips to the store as well.
If your hot water takes a long time to heat up and you find yourself running the tap often, consider installing a recirculating water pump in your bathroom.
To save on electricity throughout the house, make sure you’re using compact fluorescent bulbs and only keeping the lights on when you’re in the room.
When cleaning, try using non-toxic cleaners or making your own from solutions of water, vinegar, and citrus essentials.
You may have a rough idea of what your home is worth. Maybe you have recently been given an assessed value on the home, or have peeked on an online search as to what comes up for your home. Do you really understand all of the things that affect the value of your home? There are many things that may not be obvious but are important to the number that you’ll come to when you decide to sell your home.
The Number Of Your House
Do you live at 13 Elm Street or 7 Winner’s Way? Buyers have superstitions that surround numbers and street names. Don’t be surprised if the number of your house or even the name of your street brings buyers in or sends them running. There’s not much you can do to change the house number or street name, but it’s something to keep in mind. Sometimes the reason that certain buyers are turned off from your house is truly out of your control. If you do live on a desirable street, that can help bring up the value of your home due to the demand in the area. Remember that what some consider “unlucky” others consider a blessing (like the number 13!)
While your home may be perfectly pristine, you don’t have much control over what your neighbors do. If there are neighbors nearby that have strange items in their yards, strange colored homes, or other eccentric tastes, buyers may be turned off from your home. This could actually cause the price of your home to drop slightly. You should be prepared for this to affect the sale of your home, but don’t be discouraged. If buyers enjoy your home enough, they’ll be able to turn off that all too bright paint color next door.
Trees and greenery increase the value of a home. Don’t think of cutting down those trees on your property unless you have to! Trees that have grown up on your property will add a lot of value to the home in the future. If you’ve been living at your residence for 20 years or so, think of the value that those first seeds and bushes you planted have added!
Interests Are Not Universal
If you have displays, shrines, or rooms dedicated to a certain hobby, it could either be beneficial or detrimental to your home sale. This all depends on who comes walking through the door for a home showing. If you’re a Veteran and have some Marine Corps things around the houses, it could attract the attention of other Vets. However, that strange Marilyn Monroe room you have might actually deter from the pool of people available to buy your home. Buyers like to be able to see themselves living in the home. Some circumstances make it easier than others for buyers to have a vision for themselves in your home.
It’s as if your entire life shuts off when you lose power at home. Television, landline telephones, kitchen appliances and music aren’t the only technologies that you lose during power outages. When the power goes out at your house, you can’t get on the Internet or cook.
Cut back on home power outage inconveniences
Let power outages happen at night and you won’t be able to see good in the dark. The longer power stays out at your house, the worse conditions get. After a while,the battery on your cell phone will run down, leaving you without the chance to connect to family and friends without venturing outdoors.
Although you might feel helpless when the power goes out at your house, there are a few things that you can do to prevent power outages. There are also steps that you can take to respond to power outages, so the experience doesn’t halt your day too much. To prevent home power outages, you could:
- Reduce the chances that electricity will damage your home – Contact your utility company to repair electrical wiring. Specific instances when you will want to do this include when wires hang so close to your house that they actually brush your house during high winds and when apiece of a wire breaks.
- Cut away low hanging tree limbs – Power lines don’t only cause damage when they hit your home. They can knock out power if they get caught in tree limbs. When you’re outside performing general maintenance on the exterior of your home, look for and cut away low hanging tree limbs.
- Check electrical boxes – Check with your utility company to see if electrical boxes need to be moved or reinforced. A bad transformer can cause power outages throughout your neighborhood.
- Remove termites – Although termites are famously known for causing wood damage, they can also cause power outages.
- Turn off unused appliances – By turning off appliances when they are not in use, especially during harsh weather storms,you reduce the amount of power that your house demands, which could help you to avoid a power outage.
Despite your best efforts, power outages occur. Keeping candles and batteries nearby are not the only things that you can do to respond to power outages at home. Additional steps that you could take include:
You have to deal with enough unexpected events at your house. Regular power outages shouldn’t be among those events. If you take proactive steps, you could reduce the number of times that the power goes out at your house. You could also keep your home safer during hard weather storms.