Thursday, July 24, 2008

Maximizing First Impressions: Part 2

In my last post I stressed the importance of the outside of your home making a good first impression on potential buyers. In Part 2 of Maximizing First Impressions, I'll be focusing on the inside of your home.

Once inside, experts say most buyers are reaffirming their curbside decision. As well as the outside may look, the buyers want to see an appealing interior too. Simply consider the following things for the interior of your home.

Clean, Clear, Light and Bright
· Give every room in the house a thorough cleaning and remove all clutter. Hiring a cleaning
service may pay for itself by adding to a buyer’s perceived value of your home.
· For a sleeker, more spacious look, consider placing furniture from crowded rooms in
storage.
· Clear kitchen counters of everything other than perhaps a few attractive items. Ask yourself:
In a model home, would a professional decorator put your choice of items out on the
counter?
· Remember, closets will be opened! Keep closets, cupboards, and even your attic orderly
and neat. Since you're anticipating a move anyway, consider holding a garage sale or
boxing and storing unused belongings.
· If necessary, repaint or clean/replace dingy, soiled or strongly colored walls, and window
and floor coverings with a light, neutral shade. Bright rooms look bigger, and neutral colors
help buyers envision their own furnishings and d├ęcor.
· Repair dripping faucets, burned out light bulbs, or cracked window panes.
· Repair cracks, holes or damage to plaster, wallboard, wallpaper, and tiles.

Warm and Homey
· Subtle scents of potpourri in bedrooms or baths and fresh baked cookies or cinnamon in
the kitchen can make your home more inviting.
· Keep an attractive set of towels in each bathroom to be brought out only for showings.

By follow these simple rules you should expect to sell your home quickly AND get top dollar for your home.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Maximizing First Impressions: Part 1

There are many important things to consider when selling your home. Just read below.

As a Real Estate Professional, I believe the most important thing is having your home ready to show. Most buyers will know if they like your home in the first 30 seconds. Really. 30 Seconds is barely enough time to get from the car to the front door. So, first impressions are absolutely important! Sellers need to have their home looking good from the front curb to the back yard. A buyer's first impression may very well be their last impression. I can't tell you how many times I've pulled into a home's driveway, with potential buyers, only to back up and move on to the next house.

Consider the list below when planning to put your house on the market. Doing these things in advance will help with those quick home showings appointments that give you little time to prepare. I encourage my clients to make sure their home is ready to show every time they leave. And here’s how:

General Exterior
·
Prospective buyers will react well if your home has been well-maintained
· Manicure landscaping - mow; edge and water lawn; trim hedges; weed and fertilize
flowerbeds; and prune trees
· Keep driveway clean and free of parked cars, and keep the garage door closed
· Repair or replace loose or damaged roof shingles
· Minimize cracks or crumbling on walkways, walls, or steps, and keep them clean and free of obstructions, like toys or snow.
· Items, from RV’s to waste cans, left out can contribute to a cluttered or busy appearance
· Make sure that from the street, your property appears clear
· Inspect appearance of interior window coverings from the curb
· Repair any peeling paint or loose caulking on windows or other areas
· Take steps to eliminate insect or rodent pests
· Pick up after your pets and neighborhood animals

Front Doorway
· While agents work the lockbox for a key, buyers have idle time to notice details
· Apply a fresh coat of paint to the front door
· Consider adding pots of flowering plants in the entryway, if weather permits
· Eliminate cobwebs and groom doorway area windows, porch light, or decorative glass

That's it for Part 1. Check back soon for "Maximizing First Impressions: Part 2."

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Birthday Amercia

The Defense of Fort McHenry, by Francis Scott Key
20 September 1814

"Oh, say can you see, by the dawn's early light,What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming? Whose broad stripes and bright stars, through the perilous fight, O'er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming? And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air, Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there. O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep, Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes, What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep, As it fitfully blows, now conceals, now discloses? Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam, In full glory reflected now shines on the stream: 'Tis the star-spangled banner! O long may it wave O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion A home and a country should leave us no more? Their blood has wiped out their foul footstep's pollution. No refuge could save the hireling and slave From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave: And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand Between their loved homes and the war's desolation! Blest with victory and peace, may the heaven-rescued land Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation. Then conquer we must, for our cause it is just, And this be our motto: "In God is our trust." And the star-spangled banner forever shall wave O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!"

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Charlotte

Hi there. I'm singing my same song again about the Charlotte Metro Area. While other Metro Cities are showing a 10 digit decrease in property value, the Charlotte Metro Area still maintains a steady or some would say a “flat market.” Charlotte’s property values only decreased by less than 1% while places like Miami has a 26.7% decrease and Las Vegas had a 26.8% decrease.

We are at the bottom of the market and now is absolutely the best time to buy. I believe the market we have now will be the market we will have for the next couple months or even until the end of the year. When the housing market starts to grow it will be a gradual increase instead of a sudden down and up, like a “V.” A slow “up” would be better for us long term. I say this because our country has never experienced a down housing market, stock market and soaring gas prices - all at the same time.

The “FEDS” made a great decision last week in not decreasing rates but keeping them unchanged. This will help curve the rate of inflation over the next few months.

So with all this said, this is why I feel now is the best time to buy: interest rates are not going to go down and our home values are flat-lining. Buy, buy, buy!