Tag Archive for real estate
With the popularity of online shopping and virtual tours, some people are of the opinion that an open house is a waste of time. However, sellers should think twice before discounting this time-tested strategy. Here are some things you need to know about hosting an open house!
What Is an Open House?
Unlike an individual showing, an open house allows anyone to view the home, whether they currently work with an agent or not. It’s an excellent way to attract buyers new to the market or just beginning a search, those without an agent, and even sporadic buyers who aren’t necessarily in the market but share the information with family and friends.
Who Should Host an Open House?
Hosting an open house is not for the novice. Real estate agents not only provide the marketing, scheduling and even security advice, but make sure the home is properly presented to prospective buyers who decide to drop in and see the home.
How Do Open Houses Sell a Home?
Higher-Priced Homes: An open house is often effective in helping to sell homes priced above the median average for a given location, especially when used in combination with the Multiple Listing Service and online listings.
Tough Market: In 2005, more than 50% of sellers used an open house, with various degrees of success. However, that rate has declined in part due to the numerous foreclosures on the market. Unfortunately for sellers, trying to compete on price alone is difficult – and costly. Instead, use an open house to showcase the property and the neighborhood. It’s one more way to help your house stand out from the crowd in a buyer’s market.
Unique or Uncommon Features: Without doubt, one of the most important reasons to hold an open house is to showcase a unique property or special features that are difficult to communicate or conceptualize. Sometimes it really is necessary to see a property to believe it, and an open house allows the buyer to fall in love at first sight by experiencing it firsthand.
This featured Article from Realtor Magazine by Ian Grace covers how you can grow your referral network to expand your reach and market. As a registered agent with Guidance Realty you are already one step ahead. Our program’s premise is to help build your referral network and increase your closings. Read more
With proper due diligence and the right real estate agent, buying a fixer-upper can be a satisfying and lucrative experience. Buying a bad one, though, can lead to disaster. Here are some tips to help you avoid problems:
Location: A bad house in a desirable neighborhood is almost guaranteed to pay big dividends for the savvy buyer. Here’s where a good real estate agent – as a specialist in local neighborhoods – can be worth his or her weight in gold.
Mass Appeal: You’ll want to look for a home that appeals to the largest number of buyers. That means three or more bedrooms and more than one bathroom.
Sensible Layout: Look past the current floor plan and figure out how the home will work. Today’s buyers look for openness and rooms that flow seamlessly.
Bang for Buck: Avoid costly makeovers like shoring up sagging foundations. Instead, think cosmetic fixes. Plaster and paint, new bathroom fixtures, and even a new roof and energy-saving windows are relatively inexpensive and can turn your ugly duckling into a beautiful swan.
Potential Problems: An investment in a good home inspector can save you thousands of dollars in the long run. You can try requesting a home inspection and a roof certification as part of the deal. Ask your real estate agent about any nearby landfills, reports of contamination and other conditions that could affect resale value. You may even want a structural engineer to examine the property as a condition of sale.
Now that you’ve gathered more information, how do you begin? Let Guidance Realty Homes guide you toward finding the latest information about neighborhoods. Our real estate agents are valuable sources of information that can help you decide between two neighborhoods that on the surface, may seem very similar. Finding the right neighborhood definitely requires some homework, but it definitely will be worth it. If your future home happens to be in Orlando, FL, NY Metro area, Northern Virginia, Maryland or Chicago, Guidance Realty Homes can help. Guidance Realty Homes’ buyers receive a commission rebate of the purchase price by using our agents. Plus, buyers can also receive an additional $350 appraisal credit when financing online with Guidance Residential.
Planning to buy in 2016? Preparation is the key to getting the best deal when shopping for a new home. Following are some tips to help you get started:
Define Needs Versus Wants: Make a list of your needs versus wants in the new home. For example, if you have a large and growing family then four bedrooms might be a necessity, while a pool might be negotiable.
Select a Location: Spend some time driving around town, researching schools and local amenities, crime rates, and other safety considerations. Select three to five areas to focus your search on.
Get Pre-Qualified: Find out how much you will be eligible to borrow and begin the paperwork so you are prepared to move quickly should a great deal arise.
Contact an Agent: Ask family and friends, perform a search for real estate agents that specialize in your target area, or consider using the services of a buyer’s agent. Let them know the price range you have been approved for, the type of home and zip codes of interest.
Read, Set and Search: Sign up for automatic listing notifications and begin viewing prospective properties online. Ask your agent for additional photos, virtual tour links and a Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange report, if available, which gives the insurance claim and loss history for residential properties. Once you find a property of interest, take a few minutes to google it before actually driving out in person. It’s often easy to see areas of concern from an aerial view as opposed to in person.
If the areas that you are looking to purchase your dream home is within Greater Orlando, NY-metro and Northern Virginia area, start the step now at Guidance Realty Homes. Our agents will be able to help you prepare to become a home owner in 2016!
If you’re looking for the perfect house in a good neighborhood at a great price, you may have to compromise to get what you want. Following are some things to consider:
Décor: You may cringe at the ’60s shag rugs, flocked wallpaper and lime green living room, but cosmetic changes cost very little and can transform the total look of a home.
Appliances and Fixtures: The avocado-colored appliances and brown bathroom fixtures may cost more to replace, but if this is your dream house it’s a sound investment. An addition will also boost the value of your property while making it more livable for you and your family.
However, there could be unseen problems to be concerned with, like mold, critters or cracked foundations so make sure you have a professional carefully assess your potential purchase.
Following are some things to look for before you sign on the dotted line:
- Signs of water damage
- Out-of-date fuse boxes
- Recent – and badly done – wall or ceiling patching jobs (inside and out)
- Signs of neglect such as cracked walkways and sagging decks
- Sagging roofs, shingle loss or chimneys with bricks missing. In the attic there may be traces of animal life, damp patches or recent stains.
- Ill-fitting windows, outside walls that feel icy in winter and other possible signs of insulation problems
A professional real estate agent can help you throughout the process of finding your home and guide you through a home inspection. For knowledgeable agents in Orlando, FL, NY-Metro, Northern Virginia, Maryland or Chicago, call a Guidance Realty Homes agent today. Guidance Realty Homes agents can help you navigate the waters and can show you a variety of choices that fit your unique needs. Buyers who use our agents receive a commission rebate off the purchase price plus an additional $350 appraisal credit when financing online with our affiliate Guidance Residential.
Taking that initial step towards becoming a homeowner can be an exciting experience. This is probably one of the biggest purchases you’ll ever make and also likely to be one of the best long-term investments. It also signifies change and a new beginning. However, there are some things that first-time homebuyers should keep in mind.
Contact a home financing provider to find out what you can afford before you start to look. Being realistic from the beginning of the process will enable you to set expectations appropriately. An experienced real estate agent will be able to put you in touch with them – some of whom will even provide you with a $350 appraisal credit, such as Guidance Residential.
Plan on putting down between 3.5 and 5% of the purchase price. This can come from either your own funds or be in the form of a gift from a close relative. You should also be prepared for other up-front expenses such as closing costs. Two ways you can potentially offset some of these upfront costs is to first inquire with your local city government about any first-time home buyer credits that may apply. Second, talk with a Guidance Realty Homes agent about commission rebates that are offered to buyers and sellers.
If you’re looking at either foreclosures or short sales, allow extra time to complete the process, as these sales need to be approved by the holders of the mortgages on the properties. These lenders are undoubtedly overwhelmed at this point in time, so they might take several weeks or more just to respond to an offer submitted on a property.
Getting those keys to your first home can be exciting but make sure that you are prepared before you dive in. If you’re a first-time home buyer, be realistic and know that you won’t find your perfect dream home, but if it’s 80% of what you imagined, you have a winner. When you’re ready to take that first step, reach out to us here at Guidance Realty Homes to help you pick out the place that shouts, “Home Sweet Home” to you.