The Weather Outside is Frightful, But the Market is Still Delightful: Tips for Selling Your Home in the Winter

I think that at this point it is common knowledge that spring is the most common time that people decide to put their homes on winter house with logo the market.  But did you know there are also benefits to listing your home in the winter that those spring sellers are missing out on?  For example we simply have to look at the concept of supply and demand.  For those motivated buyers, those who have to move, and those who don’t mind the winter moving conditions your house will be one of the few to look at.  With fewer options means less competition and you have a better handle on the market.  Not only will you potentially get more traffic of perspective buyers but you know these buyers are motivated and can therefore negotiate better on your terms.  With that being said there are some ways to make your winter home more appealing.

* Be sure to always keep walkways and driveway cleared off when hosting open houses or having showings.  The last thing you want people to remember is trudging through the snow to make their way to your door.

* Keep the home warm.  The idea is to make the potential buyer are comfortable and cozy as possible in the winter.

* Open blinds and turn on all the lights.  You want to light up the home as much as possible on the dark and often dreary days of winter.

* Create a virtual experience of the home.  In the cold weather people are a bit pickier about which houses they want to venture out for.  Make sure yours is as appealing as possible online in order to get more potential buyers to actually come to the home.

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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.

How Does a Realtor Get Paid?

This is understandably a common question that I get on a regular basis, “so how do you get paid?”.  This is especially common for first time home buyers who money bag wth logohave not gone through the process before.  And thankfully most first time home buyers are thrilled with my answer that in most U.S. states it is the home seller that covers all of the realtor fees.  While I will delve into the process a bit more extensively below, what this really means is that especially for any first time home buyer there is absolutely no reason for them to find a highly recommended, experienced realtor to guide them through the sometimes tricky home buying process.  I think often times buyers avoid contacting a realtor at the beginning of their search for fear of accruing fees.

Another interesting thing to note is that a realtor does not get paid (not a single dime) until the closing.  This is great for you as the consumer because it ensures that your realtor will stick with you and guide you through the entire process, start to finish.  If for some reason the deal falls apart before the closing then the realtor makes zero money.  To actually follow the money this is the path that it takes…. 1.) The seller pays their listing agents brokerage at closing   2.) The listing agents brokerage pays the listing agent (often times brokerages keep up to 40% of the agents commission)   3.) The listing agent pays the buyers agent brokerage (it’s also common for both agents to split the earnings)   4.) The buyers agents brokerage then pays the buyers agent

 

Not Hiring a Realtor? Are You Crazy?

Have you ever heard the saying, “you’ve got to spend money to make money?”  Well this is never more true than in the ever evolving world of real estate.  It is house money with logoeasy to succumb to the temptation of saving a few bucks and trying to sell your house on your own but at what risk?  I highly suggest talking to someone that has attempted this exact money saving situation and chances are they would never recommend going this route and here’s why….

* Real Estate Agents are Good Marketers:  Sure you can post your home on facebook for your friends and family to see, maybe even have it included in a for sale by owner website but unfortunately the exposure is just not up to par.  Experienced realtors on the other hand know how to advertise and promote the most praised features of your home and gain the most interest.  As a licensed realtor they also have access to putting your home on highly popular sites such as zillow, homefinder, and trulia to name a few.

* Real Estate Agents are Great Negotiators: Negotiations go much beyond just the financial bottom line in real estate.  There are negotiations made almost every step of the way in selling a home ranging from closing costs to necessary repairs and more.  The benefit to having an agent do these is that they are not emotionally involved in the process in the same way you would be about your beloved home.

* Real Estate Agents Have a Knack for Property Pricing: I think each and every one of us probably assume our home is worth more than it is and that every other home on the market is worth less than they are asking.  I’m sure this has to do with the fact that you spent 4 whole weekends retiling your bathroom, or watched your youngest child learn to walk in the dining room, or know the degree of dedication you have had in maintaining your home.  It is hard as home-owners to separate our nostalgia from the black and white lines of the market.  Realtors are able to help determine the best price for your home that ensures you are still happy with not only the financial end of the sale but the speed in which it is accomplished.

* Real Estate Agents Have a Passion for What They Do: It is easy to separate the successful people in life versus the less than successful and the deciding factor usually involves passion.  A realtor that has a true love of the job can make a seemingly painful task such as selling your home into a seamless and enjoyable process.  Plus with a dedication to their job they are sure to work hard as your advocate, going to bat for you whenever the going gets tough.  This will help you avoid the inevitable headaches that come along with the home buying/selling process.

* Last but Certainly Not Least, Real Estate Agents are Experts:  Not just anyone can become a real estate agent and even less can become a successful and respected one.  Realtors know how to read the market, know when to place your home for sale, what improvements are necessary, who the target audience should be, what to price your home, and how to successfully navigate the entire process of selling/buying your home.

Horse Lovers Paradise

As an experienced realtor it is uncommon that I walk into a home and am in sheer amazement.  Amazed at not only the openness, attention to detail, and markleville with logobeauty but at the absolute perfection from top to bottom.  This exact thing happened the moment I walked in the door at our new listing in Markleville.  The sheer magnitude of the property is enough to cause you to stop in your tracks but delving even deeper into the home and taking note of the flawless craftsmanship in this Riffey built home gives you an even deeper appreciation for the architecture and design that went into making this home.  Located on 17 acres in the justly popular Pendleton School district and only 5 miles from Hoosier Park this home is ideal for horse lover in your life.  In addition to the fenced in pasture it also features a 5 stall horse barn with office.  I could go on and on about the interior of the house from the soaring great room with the floor to ceiling fireplace, the luxurious master spa, or the gourmet kitchen but without seeing the pictures it would not be doing it justice.  Take the time to look at the pictures and set up your own personal tour! This eye catching, breath taking, mold breaking home won’t last long on the market.

Turn-Offs for Potential Buyers

There are a few things that you can have or do to your home that can be a turn off to potential buyers if you are looking to sell.  This is not to say that you dinosaur with logoshouldn’t do them if you and your family will get enjoyment out of it but just to make you aware of the potential negative impact it can have on resell.

* Putting carpet over hardwood floors: Most people prefer hardwood floors over nearly any other type of flooring.  Not only do they look sleeker and more modern but they help the entire house look cleaner.  If you are lucky enough to have hardwood floors throughout your home the last thing you want to do is cover them up.

* A garage turned into something else: Whether you’ve turned your garage into an extra room, a gym, or an artist studio chances are a potential buyer will not be nearly as impressed.  Having a safe and secure place to park a car is a top requirement for many home seekers and the likelihood that they are also interested in an indoor gym is slim.  The garage is also a place that people think of as storage and by eliminating its original use you force buyers to look elsewhere.

* Kids rooms that are overly decorated: Sure little Timmy loves dinosaurs but the big t-rex mural on the wall and the neon carpet may be a bit too loud for a potential home buyer to overlook.  Before putting your home on the market it may be wise to turn your dinosaur oasis into a more muted room.

* An Above ground pool: (or even an in-ground pool):  Unless the potential buyer is an avid pool lover most people see a maintenance issue or a potential liability  when they look at a pool.

* Pet supplies: While we are certainly not advocating getting rid of your four legged friends (they are family after all) when putting your home on the market you may want to keep their toys, bowls, litter boxes, etc a bit more out of site.

* Cigarette smoke: This may be the biggest turn off to date for any potential buyer.  This is because in order to fully get rid of the smell you have to replace carpet, window coverings, paint, etc. which can be an expensive and time consuming project.

Top 5 Things Every Home Buyer Should Do

Buying a house is an exciting time but it can also be stressful.  Be sure to follow these 5 tips to ensure a smoother home buying process!  cartoon house with logo

* Get a home inspection!  This will be the smartest money you have ever spent.  Before you invest your hard earned money in a home you want to be entirely sure that the home is sturdy, up to code, safe, and free of need for expensive repairs!

* Get pre-approved for a mortgage loan BEFORE you start house hunting.  There is nothing worse than falling in love with a house out of your price range or having a home bought before you can get the paperwork together for the loan.  Being prepared can make all the difference!

* Make a realistic wish list of what you can afford.  Rank the things that are most important at the top.  The fact is that most homes are not going to meet your every whim but as long as they have the essentials you don’t want to rule it out.

* Get everything in writing.  While you want to believe that you can trust everyone on their word it is simply a smarter business decision to have everything in writing.  Specifically you will want the sellers to put every component of the deal on paper.

* Let your realtor do your talking.  Any communication with the seller should go through your realtor as to avoid any miscommunication or misunderstanding.  Your realtor has experience dealing with sellers and other agents and is better equipped to handle the nitty gritty of the real estate world.

Welcome Mandee Sears to Our Team!

Pendleton, IN: (July 28th, 2014)~ The Real Estate Pros announces the addition of Mandee Sears, Realtor. Based in Pendleton, Indiana, The Real Estate Pros is Mandee Sears with textled by Keller Williams Indy Metro Northeast 2013 Top Selling Agent Heather Upton, who also brings ten years of successful real estate expertise and experience to homebuyers and sellers.

Mandee Sears grew up in a military family and therefore is very familiar with the process of moving from place to place. Once she had her own family she continued to move around and understands what it’s like to be the new kid on the block as well as the person saying good-bye to their beloved home. These experiences have naturally drawn her into a career in real estate.

Mandee and her family recently returned to Pendleton after fifteen years away and couldn’t be happier! Mandee and her husband are both graduates of Pendleton Heights High School so it is like coming home. Madison County is a wonderful place to live, work, and raise your family.

As a team member of The Real Estate Pros, she is committed to assisting you in your home buying or selling and eager to get the positive results that you are looking for. Mandee recognizes that buying or selling your home can be a stressful ordeal and she is here and dedicated to help it go as smooth as possible.

Adding More Experience and Dedication to Our Already Amazing Team

We are very excited to announce 2 additions to our growing team.  The first addition is realtor Kevin J. Guion who will serve as our team leader.  Kevin and his kevin and adrian photofamily have lived in Lapel for years until their recent move to Cicero.  With Kevin comes years of experience, he started his real estate career in 1989 with a break in there to follow his career dream of serving the homeless.  His children are now grown and he has reignited his desire to be involved in real estate.  Kevin will be focusing a great deal of his efforts to the Cicero, Noblesville, Lapel, and Pendleton areas.  Almost as important as his experience and dedication is his charisma and innate ability to put people at ease.  We look forward to learning tips and tricks to the real estate market from Kevin and hope you get a chance to meet him as well.

The second new team member we are thrilled to introduce is realtor Adrian Renner.  Adrian lives in Anderson and has been a lifelong Madison County resident.  Adrian has a strong desire to help our community thrive and grow.  She stated that “real estate is the pulse of progress” and brings years of community experience and dedication to the table.  Adrian is the ideal mix of drive and compassion that we need on our team.  She is married with 6 kids which as any mother can attest shows her ability to multi-task, organize, and delegate which is essential in any real estate team.  If you see Adrian make sure to welcome her!

 

 

Your Dream Home is Here

There are certain qualities or amenities that a home has to have in order to be considered a “dream home.”  Often times a gourmet kitchen with solid surface turf pic with textcounter-tops, 2 ovens, and a large island is a must in someone’s “dream home.” Other items may include walk-in closets in each bedroom, an upstairs laundry room, a 3 car attached garage, and a jacuzzi tub! A 3-tiered deck is something else on the short list of wants of many home seekers as well as over 4,500 square feet of space.  Having a modern look but remaining classic is a decor desire that most home buyers are looking for and a state of the art security system to protect your investment is a must.  It is rare that one home would contain all of these amazing characteristics but that is just the case in this beautiful, brick home in Anderson.  Be sure to set up your personal tour now before this “dream home” disappears from the market! Contact us now!