What to Have on Hand for the New Owners

 Owner’s manuals and warranties for appliances left in the house.  Garage door opener.  Extra sets of house keys.  A list of local service providers — the best dry cleaner, yard service, plumber, etc.  Code to the security alarm and phone number of the monitoring service if not discontinued.  As a courtesy, you could provide numbers […]

What to do if you’re facing a Short Sale

 If you’re thinking of selling your home, and you expect that the total amount you owe on your mortgage will be greater than the selling price of your home, you may be facing a short sale. A short sale is one where the net proceeds from the sale won’t cover your total mortgage obligation and […]

What is Appraised Value?

 Appraisals provide an objective opinion of value, but it’s not an exact science so appraisals may differ.  For buying and selling purposes, appraisals are usually based on market value — what the property could probably be sold for. Other types of value include insurance value, replacement value, and assessed value for property tax purposes.  Appraised […]

Understanding Capital Gains in Real Estate

 When you sell a stock, you owe taxes on your gain — the difference between what you paid for the stock and what you sold it for. The same holds true when selling a home (or a second home), but there are some special considerations.  How to Calculate Gain  In real estate, capital gains are […]

Understand Agency Relationships

 It’s important to understand what legal responsibilities your real estate salesperson has to you and to other parties in the transaction. Ask what type of agency relationship your agent has with you:  Seller’s representative (also known as a listing agent or seller’s agent)  A seller’s agent is hired by and represents the seller. All fiduciary […]

Tips for Pricing Your Home

 Consider comparables. What have other homes in your neighborhood sold for recently? How do they compare to yours in terms of size, upkeep, and amenities?  Consider competition. How many other houses are for sale in your area? Are you competing against new homes?  Consider your contingencies. Do you have special concerns that would affect the […]

Spring Cleaning Checklist

 With spring selling season arriving, take the time now to polish your home to perfection.  1. Let the sun in. Make any room look brighter with clean blinds and windows. Mix a solution of one part white vinegar to eight parts water, plus a drop or two of liquid dishwashing liquid, for a green window […]

Simple Tips for Better Home Showings

 1. Remove clutter and clear off counters. Throw out stacks of newspapers and magazines and stow away most of your small decorative items. Put excess furniture in storage, and remove out-of-season clothing items that are cramping closet space. Don’t forget to clean out the garage, too.  2. Wash your windows and screens. This will help […]

Moving Checklist for Sellers

 Provide the post office with your forwarding address two to four weeks ahead of the move.  Notify your credit card companies, magazine subscriptions, and bank of your change of address.  Create a list of friends, relatives, and business colleagues who need to be notified about your move.  Arrange to disconnect utilities and have them connected […]

Low-Cost Ways to Spruce Up Your Home’s Exterior

 Make your home more appealing for yourself and potential buyers with these quick and easy tips:  Trim bushes so they don’t block windows or architectural details.  Mow your lawn, and turn on the sprinklers for 30 minutes before the showing to make the lawn sparkle.  Put a pot of bright flowers (or a small evergreen […]