Cynthia Owens - Five College REALTORS ®



Posted by Cynthia Owens on 9/17/2020

Getting the best price for your residence can be easy, particularly if you allocate the necessary time and resources to become a smart home seller.

What does it take to become a smart home seller? Here are three tips to help you do just that.

1. Analyze the Housing Market Closely

The housing market can be tricky to navigate, especially for a first-time home seller. Fortunately, those who spend some time reviewing the real estate sector closely can identify housing market patterns and trends and plan accordingly.

For example, a home seller should check out the prices of comparable houses in his or her area. This will enable a property seller to understand how his or her home stacks up against the competition.

A home seller also should review the prices of recently sold homes. This will allow a home seller to differentiate between a buyer's market and a seller's market.

2. Take a Look at Your Home – Both Inside and Out

When a homebuyer views your house for the first time, will your residence make a positive first impression? If you're unsure, you may want to conduct a home appraisal as soon as possible.

A home appraisal allows a property inspector to examine your residence both inside and out. That way, you can identify any potential problems with your residence and make home improvements as needed.

There are many quick, simple ways to enhance your property's appearance without breaking your budget too.

For example, mowing the front lawn and trimming the hedges can help you transform an ordinary home exterior into an exceptional one.

Or, if you want to upgrade your house's interior, eliminating clutter usually is a great idea. Removing unwanted items from your house will help you free up space so you can show off the true beauty of your residence's interior.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

No one should be forced to navigate the home selling journey alone. Lucky for you, real estate agents are available who can help you seamlessly add your home to the housing market and optimize your residence's value.

A real estate agent will meet with you to understand your home selling goals. Then, he or she will help you map out a home selling journey, one that guarantees you can generate plenty of interest in your residence as soon as it becomes available.

Usually, a real estate agent will help you get your home ready to add to the real estate market. He or she will offer honest, unbiased home improvement recommendations so you can upgrade your residence in no time at all.

Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will set up home showings, promote your residence to homebuyers and negotiate with property buyers on your behalf. And if you ever have home selling concerns or questions, a real estate agent will be happy to respond to them instantly.

Take the guesswork out of selling your home – use the aforementioned tips, and you can become a smart home seller.





Posted by Cynthia Owens on 7/16/2020

As a home seller, receiving the first offer on your residence can be an exciting experience. However, the initial offer on your home may prove to be insufficient for a number of reasons, including:

1. The offer fails to meet your expectations.

Ideally, a home seller will allocate the necessary time and resources to fully analyze a house before adding it to the real estate market. This will enable a home seller to establish realistic expectations for his or her house and price it accordingly.

Conducting a home appraisal offers a great starting point for a home seller to determine the true value of a residence. This appraisal ensures a home inspector will examine a residence's interior and exterior. Then, the inspector will provide a report that details a house's strengths and weaknesses.

With a home appraisal report in hand, a home seller should have no trouble establishing a "fair" price for his or her residence. And if an initial offer falls short of this price, a home seller can politely decline the proposal and wait for additional offers.

2. The homebuyer has submitted a "lowball" proposal.

In some instances, a homebuyer may submit a "lowball" offer in the hopes of acquiring a terrific house at a budget-friendly price. If a home seller cannot differentiate between a reasonable offer and a lowball proposal, he or she risks missing out on an opportunity to optimize the value of a residence.

An informed home seller should examine the prices of available houses that are similar to his or her own. By doing so, this property seller can see how his or her residence stacks up against the competition and map out the home selling journey accordingly.

Moreover, an informed home seller will mow the front lawn, trim the hedges and do whatever it takes to enhance a house's curb appeal. This home seller likely understands the importance of making a positive first impression on homebuyers, and as a result, will perform assorted home exterior improvements to help reduce the risk of receiving a lowball initial offer.

3. The offer does not correspond to the current state of the housing market.

For a home seller, it is essential to work with a real estate agent who can provide full details about the current state of the housing market.

A real estate agent can help a home seller differentiate between a buyer's market and a seller's market. Plus, this housing market professional can provide honest, unbiased recommendations about whether a home seller should decline an initial offer on a home.

Many real estate agents are available in cities and towns nationwide, and these housing market experts are happy to help home sellers in any way they can. If you employ a real estate agent before you list your home, you can reap the benefits of unparalleled guidance at each stage of the home selling journey.

There is no reason to settle for a subpar initial offer on your residence. Instead, consider a first offer closely, and you can make an informed decision about whether to decline or accept it.





Posted by Cynthia Owens on 7/9/2020


 Photo by Gerd Altmann via Pixabay

Booming housing markets are obviously bad news for buyers, especially if they're afraid they're about to buy smack dab in the middle of a bubble. However, there are also reasons why residents and even home sellers should fear housing booms as well. When a city or town undergoes rapid growth due to a major corporation striking it rich, it isn't all champagne and caviar for the everyday people who live in the neighborhoods. 

1. Owners Move Up Their Sale Dates 

Owners who want to capitalize on the housing boom face two major problems. The first is that they likely weren't ready to move, and the second is the question of where they should move to. Because housing booms extend far past where the corporation has set up shop, it's not as though owners can purchase a property in the next town over. To reap the profits of their sale price, they may need to move clear out of state! Add that to the added stress of an early sale date, and it's easy to see why sellers aren't always making out like bandits. 

2. Residents Face Increased Costs of Living 

When housing prices go up, so too does everything else. From insurance to groceries to entertainment, those with a steady income find that it doesn't stretch as far as it used to. So unless residents are planning to move to a cheaper area or they're about to get a serious raise, they're essentially left in a worse position. This undisputed fact has put residents in a tenuous position, especially if they were trying to save. 

3. Neighborhoods Lose Their Appeal 

Unfortunately, it's usually the same developers who are buying up property during housing booms. These owners are primarily concerned with how to squeeze the most money from the well-paid employees at the nearest corporation. And while this is understandable, it tends to whitewash neighborhoods so everything starts to look the same. Even the landowners who try to brand themselves as funky to appear hip the younger crowd tend to water it down to the point where there's little personality or charm to what were once thriving and close-knit communities. 

There's no doubt that corporations can bring unprecedented success to neighborhoods, but they certainly don't help everyone. The real value of a city or town doesn't come from CEOs, but rather from the people who work to build the community through its patchwork efforts. That kind of appeal can take years before it's noticed and appreciated and that's part of what attracts big business in the first place. 




Categories: Market  


Posted by Cynthia Owens on 7/2/2020

If you receive an offer to purchase your house, determining how to proceed with this proposal sometimes can be difficult. Ultimately, a home seller needs to weigh the pros and cons of accepting an offer to purchase. And if the pros outweigh the cons, it probably is a good idea to accept the homebuying proposal.

When it comes to reviewing an offer to purchase, there are many reasons why a seller should accept this proposal, and these include:

1. An offer to purchase matches or exceeds a home seller's expectations.

If a home seller receives an offer to purchase at or above the initial asking price for his or her house, accepting the proposal likely is a no-brainer. In fact, a seller may want to provide an instant "Yes" to this offer so he or she can quickly move on to the next step of the property selling journey.

Of course, it helps to establish realistic home selling expectations before listing a residence. If a seller sets a competitive initial asking price that corresponds to his or her home selling expectations, then this individual may be better equipped than others to enjoy a seamless property selling experience.

2. An offer to purchase falls in line with the current housing market's conditions.

If you're selling a home in a buyer's market, you may pounce at the opportunity to accept any offer to purchase that comes your way. Comparatively, if you list your house in a seller's market, you may need to consider all of your options closely before you accept an offer to purchase.

As a home seller, you should evaluate the current state of the real estate market. If you allocate time and resources to learn about the housing market, you can gain real estate market insights to help you determine whether to accept an offer to purchase.

3. An offer to purchase enables a home seller to speed up the property selling process.

If you're operating on a tight home selling timeline, you may be more inclined than ever before to accept an offer to purchase, even if it falls below your initial expectations. Conversely, if you plan ahead for the home selling journey, you may reduce the risk of facing a time crunch to sell your house.

For home sellers, hiring a real estate agent is key. This housing market professional can help a seller prepare for the real estate market and ensure that a seller sets a competitive price for his or her house. Plus, a real estate agent will set up home showings and open house events to showcase a residence to prospective buyers. And if a seller receives an offer to purchase, a real estate agent can provide a recommendation about the best way to respond to this homebuying proposal.

Ready to add your house to the real estate market? Collaborate with a real estate agent, and you can boost the likelihood of getting an offer to purchase your home that allows you to maximize the value of your property.





Posted by Cynthia Owens on 6/25/2020

If you’d like to increase the value of your home by a slight amount before you even think of putting it on the market, you may be hesitant to make any kind of an investment. There are numerous upgrades that you can make to your home for under one thousand dollars. In the long run, these upgrades could help to save you some serious money. 


Put In A Programmable Thermostat


The majority of energy usage in your home is consumed by your heating and cooling systems. Using a programmable thermostat can help to keep the temperature inside your home stable throughout the day. Your heating and cooling system won’t need to continually start and restart to create a stable temperature in the home. This could be a great assistance in long-term energy and utility bill savings.


Get A New Toilet


If you want to impress buyers, put a new stylish looking toilet in your home. Upgrading your toilet can also bring your energy costs down. It will use less water with each flush and save you on your water bill.


Re-tile The Bathroom


Tiling a room yourself can be fairly inexpensive. It can also help you to breathe new life into the bathroom. Your tub will look brand new. Buyers will leave thinking that you have done an entire remodel of the bathroom. All you really need to do is replace some tile and grout. It’s a DIY project that can truly pay off with big dividends.


Re-tile Your Floors


Just like the bathroom, putting in a new kitchen tile or floor can really bring back some life into the room. Tile helps to rejuvenate the space by getting rid of dirty, tired flooring and backsplashes. 


If you need professional installation for any of these projects, you can splurge on it a bit. It does take some know how to understand the proper installation floor and backsplash tiles. Replacing the floors and tiles gives your home a new, clean look that will be an attractive upgrade to your home. 


Put Up New Window Fixtures


Replacing your blinds can really add something to each room of the house. Blinds can collect a lot of dust and dirt over time. While you may wash and clean them, sometimes, the dirt gets to a point where it’s completely stuck on. If you want to really make your buyers “wow,” try wood blinds. Most home improvement stores have a wide array of options for window blinds that allow you to customize both the size and style of your blinds.


Any upgrades that you can make to your home are an improvement for you while you’re living in it. These changes also allow you to get a bit more of a return on your property once you’re ready to sell.







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