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March
18

Spring is coming. Homeowners are looking for ways to get the house spring cleaned and ready for prospective buyers. Where to start is often the challenge. Depending on how routine maintenance and cleaning have been, this may be an easy or difficult task. A thorough cleaning makes the home stand out more than one that only looks good on the surface. People can usually tell a deep clean from surface clean. Prospective buyers need to envision themselves in the home. 

 

Clean Up and Ship Out

The best rule of thumb when spring cleaning is to get rid of things that don't belong. This may be old clothes that have not been worn or old furniture that won't be going to the new place. Reduce the amount of clutter and donate to a good cause at the same time. It is well worth the investment to stage the house for prospective buyers by taking time to bag up clothes, toys, papers, and documents that can be shredded. It also helps to put things in storage so they are out of the common areas where people might see them (like too many books, DVDs, or personal items).

 

Outside Clutter

Nothing is less appealing to prospective buyers than a home's exterior that has not been maintained. The outside of a home is important as a first impression. Curb appeal is important because house hunters go off first glance to request a showing. Some key tips to consider:

  • Lawn maintenance matters. Keep the lawn free and clear of clutter and long grass in spring or summer. Keep it free of leaves and make sure the hedges are trimmed
  • Clean up gutters and downspouts of debris to make sure it is flowing well
  • Spruce up flower beds, add additional plants, or trim some hedges to clean up landscaping
  • Put out a new mat that welcomes prospective home buyers to the property
  • Add a few touch-ups to paint or exterior siding that will help make it look more presentable

 

Windows

Make sure all the windows are clean. Homes are better with blinds and curtains pointing up. A clean window still gives more light into a room and gives buyers a chance to get a clear picture of the interior of the home. Make sure to clean and get rid of streaks. Check sliding doors, large windows, and outside doors, too.

 

Little Things Matter

Look at all the little pieces of the home from the perspective of a potential buyer. When looking around, think of it as whether someone will think a quirk is just a quirk or if it needs work. Things that are loose and squeaky may need extra love for the moment. If knobs are missing or loose, it is best to replace them.

 

A small amount of cleaning goes a long way. Don't hesitate to speak to a real estate professional about getting your home spring cleaned and ready for sale. It takes a village to get it done right. Be sure to put in the time and effort now. It will pay dividends in the future.

 

Even if cleaning is not your favorite part of the sale process, we can help make the rest easier. Our goal is to support you as you search for that perfect property and sell your current home. We help you navigate the home inspection process, spring cleaning, and everything in-between. Let us know how Choice Properties can help you through the process. 

December
28

Selling a home can be a tumultuous process. While some offers may seem great upfront, it does not signify the process is almost over by any means. Between offer and closing, there is the actual sale that requires lots of time and persistence to make it through. It is often a rapid-fire time of answering and responding to emails, questions, and inquiries about credit histories and property values, and other things that can derail a home sale at any point before closing. Find out some of the top reasons why pending sales fall through and how to navigate this with an experienced realtor.

Pending Sales

Terminology is key when talking about property sales. A sale is considered to be pending when a seller accepts a buyer's offer until the sale is closed. Some agents also call this 'being under contract' or 'contract pending.' There may be contingencies that come up in the process, meaning either buyer or seller has requests that must be fulfilled as part of the contract. This prevents them from getting into the deal and being stuck if major repairs are needed. 

Mortgage Application

A common reason for pending sales to fall through is the buyer cannot qualify for financing. Most buyers finance a home because they don't have enough equity to purchase one outright. A letter is often submitted that they are pre-approved or pre-qualified for a loan. This is not a guarantee, but an estimate of how much the bank believes the buyer can afford. This means checking credit history, getting verified documents of income, and making sure they have enough money to continue making payments after the purchase goes through. 

Home Inspection

The home inspection is often where good sales deals go wrong. A professional home inspection can reveal concerns or problems a buyer is not aware of, maybe even the seller, until the report comes back. Some common issues they look for:

  • Mold
  • Foundational issues
  • Roof damage or lack of upkeep
  • Interior hardware like furnaces and water heaters including the age of these appliances

Buyer's Sale

When buyers look for a new home, they are usually trying to sell their primary residence. Doing this at the same time is tricky. If they find a home they love, they might write up an offer and include a home sale contingency. They will have sometimes up to 60 days to sell their home and keep the current offer on the table. Market conditions are important to this process to see if there may be other, better offers, or if the person is definitely a good candidate to sell their home, also, and move forward with the process.

Prevention Tips

When you know what to look for, you can often take preventative steps to keep the process going smoothly. Explore some proactive measures that might be helpful:

  • Keep contingencies in mind: some sellers require a pre-approval letter and proof of funds prior to moving forward. A strong letter and good down payment are signs the buyer can get a mortgage without major issues
  • Pre-inspection: this step will alert you to problems that might hinder the sale of your property and give you time to fix them before trying it out in the market. The older the home, more repairs there will so be/ aware this can actually save money in the long run
  • Appraiser: give them a fact sheet with things like square footage and comps in the neighborhood. The appraisal may be subjective but let them know you are aware of what local averages and ranges are so you feel you get the best appraisal for your property
  • Keep a list of repairs: if you made repairs and upgrades, you are on your way. If you have a good school district, this is often a selling point for families. Consider this a selling point and look at all the things that have been dong as potential upgrades to a buyer

Real estate transactions come with real risk and uncertainty. To have more certainty in the process, it helps to have some ducks in a row ahead of time to make the process go more smoothly on the back end and sell your home or buy the potential home of your dreams. 

 

Trying to make the process easier is the job of a real estate agent, but there are some things sellers and buyers can do ahead of time to make it go more smoothly. If you are ready to jump into the transaction part of the journey, we will help you navigate the process of selling or buying a property. Choice Properties has experienced agents ready to answer questions and help you get started on the process. Call us to get started. 

October
16

For many homebuyers the kitchen is the focal point of the household. It's where friends and family gather after a long day, loving memories are shared, and yummy meals are prepared. Making small, easy updates to your kitchen can do wonders for attracting the right buyer when selling your home. It's important to make the right changes when listing your home. Your Choice Properties real estate agent will guide you through the process while making suggestions and tips along the way. Consider these 5 budget friendly ways to update your kitchen before selling your home. 

Install Fresh Backsplash

Current backsplash, if any in the existing kitchen, may be outdated or caked with dirt from the previous years. Consider adding or replacing with brand new backsplash for a clean, polished look. Adding new backsplash easily adds a tasteful design that can dramatically improve the aesthetic of the space, at a reasonable cost. Adding brand new backsplash will increase of grabbing the eye of an interested buyer, having them overlook smaller flaws in the kitchen. 

 

Update Your Cabinets

A fresh color of paint can go a long way when it comes to your kitchen cabinets. Consider opting for a neutral color that most people would find attractive, opposed to a bold paint color. After your cabinets have dried and been re-hung, swap out old hardware for sleek, modern pieces that compliment the painted cabinets. Adding new knobs and pulls to a kitchen is a budget friendly way to make your cabinets look brand new. 

 

Add New Lighting

Light bulbs and fixtures are easy to overlook. Broken or burnt out bulbs can make any kitchen feel dark and unappealing. Consider swapping out old, dim bulbs for cool white bulbs for a brighter, open feel in the space. Make sure to double check the lighting before listing your home. 

 

Replace Countertops

Countertops are the main element of a kitchen. With the wide variety of materials and options, you can then choose a kitchen countertop that is budget friendly while tying in the space. While making small upgrades to other elements in your kitchen, this is one to keep in mind the most. 

 

Install New Flooring

Unfortunately, a bad floor holds the ability to mark down the selling price of your home. If you find yourself needing to replace your floor, don't fret! There are a number of budget friendly flooring options. This may be:

  • Linoleum 
  • Tile
  • Vinyl
  • Carpet 

 

Choice Properties offers you a chance to find the home of your dreams. We work with your budget and ideas in mind to support your ultimate vision. Call us if you are ready to check out the available inventory or to speak with a reputable agent who can assist you with your home buying needs.

September
18

 

For those who spend Saturday mornings with a cup of coffee and HGTV, home staging may seem like a piece of cake. However, when selling your home this may be the most important factor in the selling process. Staging your home for potential buyers allows them to view themselves and their family within the space, increasing the chance of them making an offer. It's important to be careful and make the right moves when staging a home to avoid missing out on a sale. Of course, when working with a Choice Properties real estate agent, we will assure all home staging needs will be addressed properly. The next time you're binge watching a home show, ask yourself, are they making these home staging mistakes?

Not Taking the Potential Buyers into Consideration

The first thing one should do when staging a home is take a minute to consider the audience. Who is most likely to show interest and purchase the home listing? Will they be a young family? An older, retired couple? Answering these questions will help the design process go as needed, according to the demographic. 

Overdesigning the Space

Contrary to belief, there is a such thing as over designing the space. In these scenarios, less is more. Staging a home to sell is about creating a space that the buyers can imagine themselves in for years to come. Take this moment to remove a majority of personal items from your home, although it may feel emotional. Easy ways to make the home inviting without overdoing it is to paint an accent wall, update window blinds, and minimal accent pillows and rugs. 

Personalising the Home Staging

Staging a home is without a doubt the best way to draw in potential buyers, intriguing them to make an offer. But, be careful about personalizing the home and scaring interested families away. Refrain from having your style and personality shine through on the home staging, as everyone has a different taste. For example, avoid repainting the kitchen any bright colors, or leaving small knick knacks lying around. Although these are important to you, it may feel loud and cluttered to others. 




Choice Properties understands your needs and desires when it comes to the home search. We are here to help you define what you want, seek the best property and move forward feeling educated and able to make good decisions throughout the process. You can trust us to help you navigate it with the best real estate agents working for you. 

Call us to get started on your dream home search today.

 

July
24

Making the decision to sell your home may come with a range of emotions. It's nostalgic to see this chapter of your life come to an end, yet exciting to start a new journey. Selling your home may feel like a stressful time,  but when working with a trusted real estate agent it's quite the opposite! The biggest factor to selling your home is hosting an open house, allowing potential buyers to take their time exploring the home. Of course, when working with a Choice Properties real estate agent, we will go above and beyond to ensure your home selling needs are met and handled. Here is our guide to hosting a successful open house. 

What is an Open House?

An open house is an event in which the home for sale can be visited by interested buyers without having an appointment. Your Choice Properties agent will manage the staging of your home by arranging refreshments, snacks, welcoming visitors, and offering tours of the property. 

What Should I Do Before an Open House?

It's important to allow potential buyers to feel welcomed into the home. This is an opportunity for them to envision themselves in the space, making it crucial to have both exterior and interior cleaned and maintained. When posting your home to sell, prepare for an open house by cleaning the outdoor space. You should:

  • Mow the lawn
  • Trim overgrown bushes and trees
  • Touch up on chipped paint
  • Clean/organize the garage
  • Power wash driveway 

Once the exterior of the home is in tip-top shape, it's time to move inside! Consider this checklist of preparing for an open house:

  • Set the temperature to a comfortable level 
  • Depersonalize the space
  • Organize and clean closets 
  • Deep clean the kitchen, including stove, backsplash, and countertops 
  • Clean bathrooms, preparing fresh soap and hand towels
  • Vacuum and shampoo carpets 

The main benefit of hosting an open house is to help the home sell quickly. Taking the time to prepare the exterior and interior of your home will help the open house go smoothly, where your expert real estate agent will take it from there. 




Choice Properties understands your needs and desires when it comes to the home search. We are here to help you define what you want, seek the best property and move forward feeling educated and able to make good decisions throughout the process. You can trust us to help you navigate it with the best real estate agents working for you. Call us to get started on your dream home search today.

May
8

The Home Selling Process Step-by-Step

With life comes new adventures whether you are transitioning careers, growing your family, or moving into a new neighborhood. Re-locating is a great way to start fresh and comes with new, exciting opportunities. Many families make the decision to sell their home and move to a new neighborhood. Perhaps you are attracted to the entertainment a new area has to offer, or you simply desire a home with more living space. The first step to starting this journey is to sell your home. When working with a Choice Properties real estate agent, we are sure to guide you through the home selling process step-by-step.

Step 1: Preparing Your Home to Sell

When selling your home, it's important to make the space feel welcoming for potential buyers. First impressions are powerful in real estate, as this gives buyers an opportunity to envision themselves living in the space. When preparing your home to sell, remember to focus on:

  • Cleaning. Although this may be an obvious, having a clean home free of clutter and dirt is an easy place to start. Wiping down ceiling fans and baseboards will do wonders for any home.
  • Fresh Paint. Taking time to give walls a coat of fresh paint can liven up any space. Incorporate it with curb appeal by painting the front door a bold, warm color.
  • Curb Appeal. Maintaining the outside of the home is just as important as cleaning the inside. Guests should be greeted with cut grass and landscaping as they enter the driveway.

Step 2: Listing Your Home for Showings

To get the selling process started, you must first list your home! Our professional agents will assist you in listing your home to guide you on the right path for a successful closing. A trusted agent should be knowledgeable on possessing the wealth of the area, ensuring your home is listed at the correct price. Once the home is listed, showings will be arranged. Showing a home gives potential buyers the chance to take their time when viewing the space.

Step 3: Price Negotiation

The patience from updating small features if your home to hosting showings has finally paid off as someone made an offer, congrats! This phase of the home selling process is important, as your real estate agent will use their knowledgeable negotiation skills. Once you and the buyer have agreed on a price, a formal contract will be written.

Step 4: Closing on The Sell

The final step in the home selling process is to close on the home. During this time, paperwork will be reviewed by all parties to ensure details are set in place. This details include transaction costs, adjustments, tax details, and other information. Your Choice Properties agent will assist you with the final documentation of the closing of your home to assure all questions are answered.




Choice Properties offers you a chance to find the home of your dreams. We work with your budget and ideas in mind to support your ultimate vision. Call us if you are ready to check out the available inventory or to speak with a reputable agent who can assist you with your home buying needs.

March
13

Avoid These Mistakes When Selling Your House

Whether you are relocating for work or need an upgrade for a growing family, selling your home often comes with a wave of emotion. With packing and moving on your mind, stressing about selling your home is the last thing you should be worried about. The award-winning agents at Choice Properties are here to help make the process smooth and worry-free. However, there are a few key points to keep in mind when making this transition! Avoid these mistakes when selling your house to make the move easier.

Staying Emotionally Attached

When owning a home for the past few (or many) years, it's natural to form an attachment to a place you have nested and created memories with loved ones. Once you decide to sell, you will have to learn to detach and think objectively about your home's strengths and weaknesses.

Not Making Repairs

It's no secret that most homes need some maintenance or repairs. Most buyers are not interested in purchasing a home that comes with a list of updates. If your cooling/heating system is broken or the roof is missing some shingles, consider repairing these issues before listing your home on the market. Expensive repairs may be deal breakers for buyers but updating small stuff, like a broken door knob or leaking faucet, will leave a positive impression.

Not Staging Your Home

Staging your home is perhaps the most important step when selling. This gives buyers an opportunity to envision themselves in the space, increasing the likelihood of them making an offer. After you've thoroughly cleaned and decluttered, consider whether your furniture arrangements show your home at its best. If your rooms feel crowded, consider donating, selling, or giving away some items, or put them in storage.

Neglecting Curb Appeal

First impressions are everything when listing your home on the selling market. Landscaping and gardening should not be neglected during this time. Make sure the lawn is properly mowed, and even plant some flower to bring color and life to the area. Consider adding a new wreath or doormat to the front porch so buyers feel welcomed and relaxed.




Choice Properties offers you a chance to find the home of your dreams. We work with your budget and ideas in mind to support your ultimate vision. Call us if you are ready to check out the available inventory or to speak with a reputable agent who can assist you with your home buying needs.

February
13

Sell Your Home Fast With These Easy Updates

While preparing to list your home on a busy market, you may be wondering what repairs needs done to catch the eye of interested buyers. Big home improvements may not be necessary, but taking the time to focus on small updates will help you find a buyer in no time. To impress potential buyers, you should focus on five areas of your home. Sell your home fast with these easy updates:

Update Curb Appeal

Setting a good first impression of your home is the first step to helping it sell. Remove all clutter from the lawn and porch, like old shoes, dead plants or gardening tools. This is a great time to pressure wash your side walks and house, making it look brand new. Try hanging a new wreath or laying a new welcoming doormat by the door. Cleaning the walkway of debris and dirt will do wonders with minimal effort.

Create a Warm Welcome

Once an interested buyer has entered the home, it's important to continue the flow of cleanliness and simplicity. Entryways often consist of clutter from shoes, mail, or jackets. Clearing the space and adding baskets for mail and keys or hooks for jackets are easy updates. Adding simple art or a mirror adds a little flare to the space and keeps the area from feeling empty.

Update Your Kitchen

Kitchens are the focus point of any home. Although a full kitchen remodel isn't necessary, there are small updates that can be done to the space. Switching out cabinet hardware is one of the most common tricks in the books. This is a small task yet makes cabinets look new. Adding a tile backsplash or refreshing your grout in existing backsplash adds beautiful details.

Update Your Bathroom

Bathrooms can be a big seller point to a home buyer, where even a dated bathroom can benefit from small updates. Replacing the shower curtain can provide a color inspiration when making other changes, such as linens. Investing in a matching set of towels and a bathroom rug pulls the room together and creates a clean space. Lastly, consider replacing the mirror with a modern option that matches the faucets and counter.

Taking the time to tackle these small updates are great ways to boost selling your home. Welcoming potential buyers into a clean, updated space is the most important step and will have your home sold in no time.



Choice Properties offers you a chance to find the home of your dreams. We work with your budget and ideas in mind to support your ultimate vision. Call us if you are ready to check out the available inventory or to speak with a reputable agent who can assist you with your home buying needs.

December
26

4 Financial Tips Before Listing Your Home

As a homeowner looking to sell, it's crucial to research and do homework before listing your home. Finding a trusted agent, creating a list of must-haves in your new home, and touring open houses are important, but finances should not be overlooked. Consider these 4 financial tips before listing your home in the market.

 

  1. Get clear on your current credit status

Reviewing your credit and spotting any glitches along the way will save you a headache when waiting for loans or escrow accounts. Some credit rehabilitation projects may takes months to complete, making it crucial to get started right away. Even if you are sure your credit is top-notch and ready to go, it's worth double checking.

  1. Determine how much you can afford

If your lender is able to offer a higher amount, that doesn't always mean you should accept the maximum payment. Take time to calculate cost of monthly utilities, home insurance, property taxes, and other home-related expenses once you move. When determining how much you can afford, consider speaking with:

  • Your agent, so they can prepare to show you homes in your price range.
  • Your mortgage broker, to help you understand various financial scenarios.
  • Your tax advisor, to keep you informed on what will affect your tax situations.
  • Your financial planner, to help you get clarify on your current income and expenses.
  1. Get inspections and key reports in advance

When selling your home, unplanned surprises such as property issues, unknown taxes, and liens can complicate the sale. The safest option is to have this information before you have an interested buyer. Choosing to be upfront with current issues may result in a lower bid, but will minimize the likelihood of tense negotiations.

  1. Consider Updates and Remodeling

It may be hard to justify spending money on a home you are looking to move out of, but doing small renovations will add value while updating to current trends. Completing projects, such as updating hardware in the kitchen and bathroom or installing new lighting fixtures are sure to gain the attention from home buyers.


 

Choice Properties offers you a chance to find the home of your dreams. We work with your budget and ideas in mind to support your ultimate vision. Call us if you are ready to check out the available inventory or to speak with a reputable agent who can assist you with your home buying needs.

December
11

Tips on Selling Your Home During the Winter Months

Although winter is not the peak season for home selling, it is becoming more and more common to sell during the cold months so don't get discouraged! While it can be a challenge to sell during the holiday season, with some helpful strategies, a motivated selling agent, and marketing tips, you can find a great buyer for your home any time of the year. Learning the ins-and-outs of selling your home in the winter will prepare you for what is ahead, making the most out of the market and potential buyers.

Who is Buying in the Winter?

It is a common misconception that all home buyers purchase in the summer to prepare for their children's school year. According to Zillow, more than half buyers don't have kids under 18 living at home, meaning they are not limited with specific school schedules. To answer the question of who is buying home during the winter season, it's everyone!

Benefits of Selling During the Winter

 

  • Motivated buyers. While more buyers are actively looking in the spring and summer months, the buyers who are shopping in the winter are more motivated to settle.
  • Less seller competition. With fewer homes on the market in the winter, that means less competition from other sellers in the area.  
  • More time off work. People tend to take the holiday season for time to themselves, which means more free time to attend showings and open houses.

 

Challenges of Selling During the Winter

 

  • Curb appeal is limited. Winter is full of short, dreary days where darkness comes earlier and earlier. This can make it a challenge to express the exterior of the home. Consider adding appropriate lighting to the landscape and walkways.
  • Less likely to get multiple offers. In the spring and summer months, sellers usually find themselves with multiple offers to choose from. This can be less likely during the winter, where you may only have one offer at a time.
  • Financing can be delayed. The holiday season could cause banking establishments to be closed more often, making it a longer process to get financing finalized.

 

Selling your home in the winter can be done with perseverance and the right real estate agent. It's important to not give up, stay motivated, and stage your home accordingly. This is a chance for interested home buyers to envision their life within the space, so consider playing off the season by adding a level of coziness to the home.






Choice Properties understands your needs and desires when it comes to the home search. We are here to help you define what you want, seek the best property and move forward feeling educated and able to make good decisions throughout the process. You can trust us to help you navigate it with the best real estate agents working for you. Call us to get started on your dream home search today.

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