Collins & Demac Real Estate



Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 12/13/2018

Although your real estate agent will do the lion's share of the work involved in selling your home, there are several things you, the homeowner, can do to help move things along.

By making sure your home is always ready to be shown at a moments notice to prospective buyers, you will be helping to "tip the scales" in the direction of a faster sale. Since making a great first impression is crucial to the sales process, it's important that your home always looks its best -- both inside and out. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you decide to put your home on the market.

Order versus chaos: Every time your real estate agent sets up a showing of your house, it's an opportunity to attract and engage potential buyers. When your house and property look organized, clean, and well cared for, it sends a series of positive messages to prospects.

Admittedly, it can be a little bit of a hassle to keep your house looking (and smelling) immaculate all the time, but doing so can definitely work in your favor when it comes to making a great impression and getting your house sold faster.

To the extent that it's possible, try to eliminate or significantly reduce anything that could be described as "clutter." Clutter can include anything from excessive furniture and wall hangings to knick-knacks on your shelves and too many containers on kitchen countertops.

The ultimate effect you want to achieve is one of spaciousness, tastefulness, and organization. Anything which detracts from those desirable qualities could potentially work against you. As the classic 1980s TV commercial for a well-known dandruff shampoo reminds us: "You never get a second chance to make a first impression!"

Remember curb appeal: Actually the real first impression happens before prospective buyers even enter your home or step on your property. In many cases, it occurs before they even get out of their cars!

Making sure your house and property look as impeccable as possible from the street can help attract potential buyers and put them in a more receptive state of mind. Maintaining a manicured, clutter-free lawn, highlighted by a few splashes of floral color, can be an effective way to create eye-appeal and make a positive first impression.

One thing home sellers are either unaware of or forget about is the fact that prospective buyers sometimes do a preliminary "drive by" before picking up the phone and calling your (or their) real estate agent to schedule a showing. If they do not like what they see from their car, they probably are not going to take the next step and arrange a full tour of your home.

When you come to the realization that every person who drives by or visits your home is a potential buyer, you'll be more motivated to take care of the many details that either attract of send away prospective buyers.





Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 12/6/2018

In a competitive selling market, itís vital to make sure you take advantage of any way to give your home an edge over the competition.

Many sellers make expensive home improvements in the hopes of attracting buyers. But, even if youíre on a budget, there are ways to boost curb appeal and increase the value of your home to make your home competitive in todayís sellerís market.

In todayís post, Iím going to cover eight low-cost upgrades you can make to your home today. We tried to keep all of the upgrades under $100 so that you can stick to your budget while still making a big difference in your home.

1. Paint the front door ($30)

One of the first things a potential buyer will notice about your home is the front door. Putting on a fresh coat of paint, especially one that pops and contrasts with the color of your home, will help to make it stand out on the block.

2. Paint your interior trim and baseboards ($75 - $100)

Baseboards often get dirty or scuffed up over the years. Putting a fresh coat of paint will make the entire room look like new. Stick with white for most rooms--it will brighten them up and make them feel clean.

3. Replace your outlet and light switch plates ($20)

They get dirty, they crack, and they get covered in messy paint every time you repaint your walls. Outlet and switch plates see a lot of wear and tear, and a dirty one can be off-putting for potential buyers.

For just a few dollars each or less, replace them all to give the rooms of your home a facelift.

4. Replace fixtures ($50 - $100)

Whether itís the knobs of your kitchen cabinets or faucet fixtures, there are a number of small items in the kitchen and bathrooms that can be upgraded.

Stainless steel is now out of style, with homeowners choosing brushed nickel and bronze over the traditional stainless.

5. Choose a new shower head ($30 - $50)

Installing a shower head is a lot easier than it looks. Plus, luxurious looking shower heads can be purchased for less than $50 on Amazon, making them a great choice to add a touch of indulgence to the shower.

6. Add new bright, energy efficient lighting ($30 - $50)

Bright LEDs can make a room feel more spacious and modern, and it can save you a few dollars on the electric bill. Installing new lights throughout the home is a good way to show off what lies within.

7. Paint or replace your mailbox ($20 - $80)

Mailboxes can easily get dirty and dented over the years and most of us pay little mind to them. But prospective buyers likely will be on the lookout for any signs of neglect when they view your home. Having a freshly painted mailbox will leave a good first impression.

8. Rent a pressure washer for a day ($50 - $100)

Pressure washing the exterior of your home can make a huge difference when it comes to upgrading curb appeal. Vinyl siding gets dirty quickly and isnít all that easy to clean.

You can rent a pressure washer from The Home Depot or your local hardware store for typically less than $100 a day.





Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 11/29/2018

As a home seller, you'll likely want to do whatever you can to promote your house to the right groups of homebuyers. Thus, hosting an open house is a must, particularly for a seller who wants to enjoy a fast, profitable home selling experience.

Ultimately, there are many reasons to conduct an open house, and these include:

1. You can stir up interest in your house.

An open house enables you to provide homebuyers with an up-close look at your residence. It allows these buyers to look beyond a home listing, and as such, may lead to many potential offers on your home.

Of course, an open house empowers you to show off the true size and beauty of your home as well. If you allocate the necessary time and resources to clean your home prior to an open house, you may increase the likelihood of securing offers at the event's conclusion.

2. You can respond to homebuyers' questions.

Although a home listing may include details about your house's age and condition, it fails to provide homebuyers with a "feel" of what it's like to walk around inside and outside your residence. Fortunately, an open house allows buyers to get a first-hand look at your residence and determine whether your house matches or exceeds their expectations.

Furthermore, an open house provides homebuyers with the opportunity to ask questions about your house. And if you provide buyers with the information they request, you can make it easy for them to decide whether to submit an offer on your home.

3. You can analyze homebuyers' interest in your residence.

Believe it or not, an open house can help you gauge the effectiveness of your marketing efforts.

For instance, an open house that features dozens of potential buyers likely can be considered a resounding success. On the other hand, if no buyers attend your open house, you may need to reevaluate your home's initial asking price and other home selling factors.

When it comes to hosting an open house, there is a lot to consider. Luckily, you can work with a real estate agent to streamline the process of putting together a successful open house.

A real estate agent is a home selling guide who can offer expert tips and insights at each stage of the home selling journey. He or she will learn about your residence and help you map out a successful home selling plan. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will set up open houses, help you assess offers on your residence and ensure you can make the best-possible decisions throughout the home selling process.

If you're worried about hosting an open house, there is no need to stress. Hire a real estate agent today, and you'll be able to receive comprehensive home selling support. In fact, with a real estate agent at your disposal, you can seamlessly navigate the home selling cycle.




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Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 11/22/2018

There are so many factors that go into buying a home. How much money do you have saved up? What is your debt amount? Hw much money do you make each month? Can you afford the neighborhood that youíd like to live in? All of these questions are swirling around the minds of all first-time homebuyers. Did you know that how long you have been at a job is just as important as your income as a factor in getting approved for a mortgage? 


Your ability to repay is why the lender is looking at so many different numbers and factors about your financial situation. Employment overall plays a large stake in the mortgage application. Lenders will look at your past employment history along with the job that your currently have. They are also concerned with your future employment status. Your lender will get an idea of your overall plan for your career and employment through looking at your history. 


As a first-time homebuyer, you most likely donít have the employment history of more seasoned homebuyers. Generally, most people who are buying a home for the first time are pretty young in their careers. As a rule of thumb, lenders will look at your employment history over the past two years. The lender wants to see your industry focus. Maybe you have stuck with one career direction, or maybe you have hopped around a bunch. As a hint, jumping around from job to job and field to field doesnít look very good to mortgage lenders. Job floaters tend to appear as if they have no plans for the future. 


Good Career Moves


Staying a software engineer, but moving from the medical industry to the financial industry is an acceptable and smart move in the eyes of lenders. Yet, leaving your stable job in accounting to pursue a career in acting would not be looked upon favorably in the eyes of a mortgage lender.


It doesnít matter how much money you have saved up, often, without employment history, a lender may not consider you as a dependable buyer. Your lender wants to see that your income is stable for a period of at least three yearís time.


Income Matters 


You wonít have the same work history as a first time homebuyer as you would if you were a bit more seasoned. When lenders look at your income history, not having a lot of work history can be a detriment to many factors. If your income is an annual salary, for example, your lender will divide that salary by 12 in order to get a monthly income. If you havenít been at the job for a full year or took a pay cut during times of training, those numbers will be affected.


For hourly employees, overtime may be a problem as it may not be factored in with the equation if there isnít a history of at least two years on the job. 


While it isnít impossible to buy a home with a short employment history, itís advisable to wait until you have some significant time under your belt before you dive into the home buying process.




Tags: self employed   finances  
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Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 11/15/2018

If you want to enjoy a seamless homebuying experience, it generally is a good idea to establish a property buying plan. That way, you can take a step-by-step approach to make your homeownership dream come true.

As you prepare a homebuying strategy, there are several factors to consider. These factors include:

1. Your Dream Home Definition

There is no one-size-fits-all definition of a dream home. Instead, this definition varies from buyer to buyer. But if you define your ideal residence, you can narrow your house search accordingly.

Think about the features you require from a home. For instance, if you want a house that offers multiple bedrooms, you can search for residences that provide you with the space you need. On the other hand, if you want a home that boasts a deluxe swimming pool, you can search for a residence that offers this feature.

Consider where you want to reside, too. By doing so, you can search for homes in a select group of cities and towns.

2. Your Homebuying Budget

You likely have only a finite amount of money that you can spend on a residence. Thankfully, if you establish a homebuying budget, you can search for houses that fall within your price range.

Oftentimes, it helps to meet with banks and credit unions before you start a house search. These financial institutions can teach you about a broad array of home financing options.

Don't hesitate to discuss your home financing options with a variety of banks and credit unions, either. If you check out myriad home financing options, you can select a mortgage that complements your finances perfectly.

3. Your Homebuying Timeline

You may want to create a timeline for buying a house. With this timeline in place, you will know precisely how many days, weeks or months you have to find and acquire your dream residence.

If possible, you should maintain a flexible homebuying timeline. There is no telling when problems may arise as you search for your dream house. And if your homebuying timeline is flexible, you can adjust it at any time.

For those who want to streamline the homebuying journey, you may want to employ a real estate agent as well. This housing market professional will go above and beyond the call of duty to help you find a great home at a budget-friendly price. Plus, he or she can offer expert guidance as you craft a property buying strategy.

Also, as you navigate the homebuying journey, a real estate agent will respond to any concerns or questions. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent is happy to provide homebuying tips and recommendations that you may struggle to receive elsewhere.

Ready to transform your homebuying vision into a reality? Craft a homebuying strategy today Ė you will be glad you did. Once you have a homebuying plan at your disposal, you can navigate the property buying journey with poise and confidence.




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