Monthly Archives: July 2017

Make Your Home Offer Competitive in a Seller’s Market


for sale sign at home ready for showingOur local real estate market is hot these days, and we’re not just talking about the temperatures. The market has gotten extremely competitive, making it imperative for buyers (like you) to take extra measures that make your offer stand out in our hot seller’s market.

Minimize contingencies.

There are numerous contingencies that can be included in an offer to purchase, such as the sale of your home before the sale or a home inspection. To make your offer more attractive, put together a clean offer with a minimal number of contingencies—if you’re comfortable with the risk. Talk with your real estate agent to decide what your best offer does and doesn’t include.

Show you’re earnest.

If you want to show you’re serious about the sale, consider including earnest money in your offer. Earnest money is a deposit included with your offer that is applied to the purchase price at sale. For example, if you include an earnest money amount of $5,000 in your offer of $225,000, you will pay $220,000 at closing.

Make your offer competitive.

A seller’s market is not the time for low ball offers. Though it may be tempting, submitting numerous low ball offers can ultimately play into losing out on the property. While you’re trying to get the lowest price possible, another offer can come in that trumps anything you’ve offered. Instead, submit your best offer; ask your real estate agent to determine what a competitive price is for the property.

Lean on experience.

An experienced real estate agent can be worth their weight in gold during a seller’s market. Choose a local real estate agent that knows the area and property values. They can give you information to make sure you don’t overpay of your dream home, helps you deal with a difficult seller, and can assist you with any obstacles that come up with the sale.

Think about it—but not too long.

Be prompt throughout the process; from the initial decision to make an offer until the last communication with the seller, make sure you meet all deadlines and respond in a timely manner. It’s okay to want to sleep on a big decision, but don’t slumber too long. If you wait too long, you could lose the property.

Be careful about closing costs.

It’s normal to want closing costs paid by the seller; however, remember that while you see the offer as full price, the seller only sees the bottom line (minus the closing costs!). If you need to include closing costs, keep the amount of closing costs to a minimum or make the offer over the asking price but include closing costs. For example, if the house is listed at $150,000, submit an offer of $155,000 and ask for $5,000 in closing costs. Contact a real estate agent to determine what the right amount that makes you a home owner and satisfies the home seller in a competitive market.

Summer Home Showing Tips: How to Sell Your Home in the Heat


home buyingPlants and home listings have a key commonality during summer: they both pop up everywhere during this hot real estate season. If your listing is one of them, it can seem incredibly challenging to make your property stand out from the crowd. The process may be simpler than you think, however, if you use these basic tips for preparing your home for a showing.

Cool your guests down.

When the temperatures are so hot you could fry an egg on the sidewalk, it’s hard to focus on anything; your potential buyers are in the same boat. Cool them down by keeping your AC at a comfortable level (not too hot and not too cold). If you don’t have AC, leave the windows open if there is a cool breeze or use fans to keep your home—and your visitors—comfortable.

Keep your flower beds and planters neat and tidy.

Your goal is to get potential buyers in the door so they can see and fall in love with your home. Help them focus on the door by impressing them with the curb appeal. Fill in cracks in your driveway and sidewalks. Weed any flower beds and prune any bushes to make potential buyers want to come in.

Mow frequently.

Buyers shouldn’t have to feel like they have to brave the jungle to get to the property. Mow and trim your lawn as often as possible, or hire a lawn service to take care of the lawn. Use this curb appeal checklist to make sure the exterior of your home creates a favorable first impression.

Make key home features stand out.

There are key features that set every home apart; features that make a buyer want to purchase a property, such as ceiling beams, high-quality flooring, and spacious rooms. Clear the areas around these key features so buyers notice those key features without having to search for them.

Lead your buyers to any outdoor spaces.

Attractive decks and patios can be the difference between an offer and a pass. Make sure any entrances to those spaces are clean and easy to access. Power wash deck boards and concrete patios and add comfortable seating so your buyers can picture themselves enjoying them.

Take cleanliness to a new level.

Deep clean your home as much as possible, especially the kitchens and bathrooms which are vital to a home sale. If you don’t have time, contact a cleaning service to make your home like a clean space buyers want to live in (and don’t have to clean themselves which can lead to lower offer).

Make your home smell pleasant.

Don’t let unpleasant odors drive potential buyers off. Make your home smell like a pleasant summer day, but don’t overdo it. You don’t want your home buyers to think you are covering up a problem.

Change your light bulbs.

While the summer days may be longer, don’t make your buyers rely entirely on the late summer daylight—and think that you don’t take care of your home. Check all the light bulbs in your home, and replace bulbs as needed (inside and out).

Ask your real estate agent for recommendations.

An experienced real estate agent can help you walk through your home like a potential home buyer. Ask for their recommendations on ways you can impress home buyers and make them think about the home—and not the hot summer temperatures.