Reasons that People Choose Not to Stage Their Home… Do These Apply to You?

I cannot stress enough the importance of staging your home to put it on the market.  While it doesn’t necessarily have to be staging wtih borderdone by a professional home stager (although it is recommended)  you can draw some tips from them to do yourself.  Despite the solid financial proof that home staging can increase the appeal, selling price, interest, and speed at which you sell your house there are still those doubters out there.  Here are a few of the reasons that many clients give for not wanting to stage their home.

* It costs too much: While there are undoubtedly costs associated with a professional home stager I have never seen the amount exceed the amount that we have had to reduce home prices due to lack of interest.  This is a prime example of having to spend money to make money.

* We can’t stage the house, we live in it: Believe it or not these are 2 things that can be done simultaneously.  In fact a professional home stager will stage your home, give you tips on keeping it show ready, and still leave all of the essentials for you to go about your everyday life.

* We want to put it on the market for awhile before we try home staging:  While in theory this sounds like a perfectly logical and conservative plan.  Unfortunately we as humans base most of our existence off of first impressions.  If a potential buyer sees your home (un-staged) and weren’t thrilled with what they saw there is not much of a chance they will even take a second look if you stage your home after a few months on the market.  In their head they have already crossed your home off the list.

* Everyone loves our house: While this may be true (or they may just be being nice) the fact of the matter is that today’s buyers are looking for specific things.  I think it is hard for sellers (myself included) to wrap their head around the fact that someone could find something wrong with this beautiful home they have poured their time, money, and effort into.  By allowing an unbiased person such as a home stager to spruce up your home you are helping to ensure that you are adhering to what home buyers are looking for.

* We can declutter and clean the home ourselves: Great… and you should! But (and this is a big but…) there is much more to home staging than simply removing things.  A professional home stager can distinguish between clutter and an asset, can find the balance between decluttered and barren, and understand the importance of highlighting desirable architectural features, lighting, and flow of furniture.

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Top 10 Signs You Need a New Home

Sometimes we have a hard time seeing the signs that are right in front of us which is why I have compiled this list of ways you can tell it is time to start shopping for a new house!

* You’ve been pondering the idea of “building on.”  For anyone that has done this the time, effort, and money are rarely in your favor.  Instead finding a house  house add on with text that has the space you need makes much more financial sense.

* After the kids have moved out you can’t remember the last time you’ve even used their rooms, heck, you can’t even recall if you’ve been upstairs at all the past 2 weeks.  Instead of having to clean, heat, and maintain all of that unused space you may want to consider downsizing to a more manageable and practical home.

* You have broken up more than one fist fight over the use of the bathroom in the morning.  In an effort to keep family peace it may be time to find a home with more bathrooms.

* You pay a monthly fee at a storage unit for all of your over-flow “stuff”.  Clearly you are in desperate need for more storage in a new home.

* Driving 2 hours round trip to work has become second nature to you.  Why not reclaim that 10+ hours a week to actually do something you enjoy and move closer to your job.

* You’ve invested in a double dead-bolt, a motion light, and an alarm system and you still feel like your house is vulnerable when you leave.  It is clear that you need to move to a town with a much lower crime rate to allow for more peace of mind.

* It’s a race home for your family to see who gets to park in the garage on those cold winter nights.  Finding a home that has a garage big enough for all of your cars is not only nice and convenient but greatly extends the life of your automobiles as well.

* At the end of every month you are hoping and scraping together enough money to barely pay the mortgage.  Too much stress makes for a miserable life.  Instead lesson your burden and find a more financially manageable home before you get behind on your payments and lose the home entirely.

* For the past 8 years you have rented a lovely small home for $700 a month….wait, you just realized you have spent over $67,000 (enough to buy that lovely, small home) and have little to nothing to show for that.  Make the next 8 years count and find an affordable home you can take pride in.

* Last but not least… you are bored with your surroundings! A change of scenery is a wonderful thing.  New walls to decorate, new neighbors to meet, new experiences to be had!

Real Estate Terms that You Should Know Before You Buy a House

I think we are all guilty of speaking in our own “jargon” when at work.  For example; often times doctors will start talking to you about blood work man with question with textresults or medicines and it may seem as if they are speaking jibberish.  This is true for all professions and real estate is no exception.  I have selected a few terms that can be confusing or that I get questions about in an effort to help make the home buying process easier for you.  If you have any questions about other terms, procedures, or practices in home buying don’t hesitate to ask us!

* Assumable Mortgage: A home mortgage that allows the buyer to take over the seller’s mortgage; that is, to step into the seller’s shoes, make mortgage payments, and comply with other terms of the existing loan. Most lenders require the borrower to qualify for the mortgage in order to assume the mortgage.

* Balloon Mortgage: A mortgage that is not fully paid off over the loan term (such as five, seven, or ten years), leaving a balance at the end. The borrower must either pay off the remaining mortgage or refinance the loan.

* Adjustable Rate Mortgage: A mortgage loan with an interest rate that fluctuates in accordance with a designated market indicator — such as the weekly average of one-year U.S. Treasury Bills — over the life of the loan. To avoid constant and drastic fluctuations, ARMs typically limit how often and by how much the interest rate can vary.

* Contingency: A provision in a contract stating that some or all of the terms of the contract will be altered or voided by the occurrence of a specific event, usually by specific dates leading up to the closing. For example, a contingency in your home purchase contract might state that, if the buyer does not approve the inspection report of the physical condition of the property, the buyer does not have to complete the purchase. Or the seller might include a contingency asking for proof that the buyer is financially able to close the deal or for closing to be held off until the seller successfully finds another house to buy

* Disclosure: The making known of a fact that had previously been hidden; a revelation. In many states, a home seller must disclose major physical defects in the house within his or her knowledge, such as a leaky roof or potential flooding problem; and, in all states, sellers must disclose the presence of lead-based paint hazards in buildings constructed before 1978.

* Earnest Money Deposit (EDM) : A partial payment (deposit) demonstrating commitment in a contractual relationship, and commonly made in real estate transactions at the time of making the purchase offer. The remainder of the payment is due on the closing date. The seller keeps the earnest money if the buyer fails to make timely payment in full (or if there is a similar breach of the agreement).

* Escrow: The holding of funds or documents by a neutral third party prior to closing your home sale.

* PITI: Abbreviation for the major expenses that make up a mortgage payment: principal (the amount borrowed), interest, (property) taxes, and (homeowners’) insurance.

* Common Area Assessments: In some areas they are called Homeowners Association Fees. They are charges paid to the Homeowners Association by the owners of the individual units in a condominium or planned unit development (PUD) and are generally used to maintain the property and common areas.