Cynthia Owens - Five College REALTORS ®



Posted by Cynthia Owens on 2/28/2019

When you’re searching for a home to buy, you’ll probably attend many different open houses. The open house is meant to help you get a feel for different properties. While you can’t get to know all the ins and outs of a home in a short time, you can get an understanding of some of the best things (and not so great things) about a property. Below, you’ll find some of the biggest warning signs that a property may not be all that it appears to be. 


There’s A Lot Of Odor Masking Elements In Place


When you walk into an open house, you may get the smell of freshly baked cookies or a lovely candle. While these are great marketing techniques, they also can be a tactic to hide things. Perhaps there are some offensive odors in the house from mold, leaks, smoke, or mildew. You may not be prepared to deal with these kinds of problems once you move into a home. 


You Notice Glaring Issues


While the home inspection will reveal many problems that may be invisible to the casual observer, you should still be on the lookout for issues on the surface of the home during the open house. These issues can include cracks in the ceiling or walls, cracks in the floor, or even squeaky floor boards. If you happen to see patchy walls in the home, that could indicate that repairs have been made several times. Be alert for these potential problems.


Does The Home Look Well-Kept?


When you pull up in front of the home is the lawn trim? Does the home appear clean? While everyone would hope that a homeowner would clean up their property before an open house, small and big things like this can indicate a bigger problem. If the home is not cared for on the surface, how many other underlying maintenance issues are there in the home? Neglected regular maintenance can cause larger problems of all kinds in a home.


Strange Cosmetic Fixes


A freshly painted wall could be suspect of a big problem. Under the paint could be mold, cracks, or other issues. Some homeowners do put fresh paint on their walls before selling in order to give the home a neutral feel. However, you should be on the lookout for other signs of problems in the home.          


Channel Your Inner Detective


While you don’t need to dig as deep into a home as a home inspector does, you should be on the lookout as you scan a home for the potential livability for you. Things like glaring cracks in the ceiling, or a strong odor of cigarette smoke could be signs of future problems living in the home. The open house is your time to find a home that fits you and your life, so make the most of the opportunity.  





Posted by Cynthia Owens on 2/27/2019


170 E Hadley Rd., Amherst, MA 01002

Condo

$115,000
Price

3
Rooms
1
Beds
1
Baths
A bright and sunny move in ready condo! This garden style one bedroom unit has been freshly painted, new carpeting, new hot water tank and new dishwasher! The open floor plan living room/kitchen overlooks the private rear deck. Located at the rear of the complex this unit enjoys the open space area as well as the nearby walking trails to the brook. Centrally located on the PVTA bus route, easy access to UMass or Amherst center. A great opportunity to own rather than rent!
Open House
No scheduled Open Houses






Tags: Amherst   Real Estate   01002   Condo  
Categories: New Homes  


Posted by Cynthia Owens on 2/21/2019

Buying a condo may seem like an uphill climb, particularly for those who are browsing the real estate market for the first time. Lucky for you, we're here to help you take the guesswork out of finding the right condo.

What does it take to locate a high-quality condo at an affordable price? Here are three tips that every first-time condo buyer needs to know.

1. Explore a Wide Range of Condos

The real estate market is filled with many first-rate condos, and the sheer volume of properties that are available may feel overwhelming at times. Therefore, you should allocate the necessary time and resources to find a condo that suits you perfectly.

Don't be afraid to check out several condos over the course of a few days or weeks. By doing so, you can better understand what you'd like to find in the ideal condo.

Of course, if you fall in love with a condo, you should be ready to submit an offer. That way, you can avoid the risk of missing out on a great condo that matches or exceeds your expectations.

2. Determine How You'll Pay for a Condo

Many property buyers get pre-approved for a mortgage, and for good reason. With a mortgage in hand, you'll know exactly what you can afford as you review the real estate market.

Meet with a variety of banks and credit unions. These lenders will be able to provide you with multiple mortgage options and respond to your financing concerns and queries.

Also, keep in mind that the price of a condo may extend beyond your monthly mortgage payments.

In many instances, condo communities have homeowners' associations (HOAs) in place that will charge monthly fees. Learn about any HOA fees in advance, and you'll know exactly what you'll need to pay each month to live in a particular condo community.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

No one should be forced to evaluate condos on their own. Fortunately, you can hire a real estate agent to streamline the process of finding a terrific condo.

A real estate agent with condo experience understands the hurdles that may arise during a condo search. As such, he or she will do whatever it takes to ensure you can get the best results possible as you look for the perfect condo.

For instance, a real estate agent will set up condo showings and keep you up to date about open houses. This real estate professional will even negotiate with a condo seller on your behalf, which means you won't have to worry about breaking your budget to purchase a stellar condo.

Employing a real estate agent enables you to get expert advice at each stage of the condo buying process too. Thus, you can receive instant responses to your condo buying questions at any time.

Simplify the process of buying your first condo – use the aforementioned tips, and you can boost your chances of acquiring a superb condo at a budget-friendly price.




Tags: Condo   Buying a home   buyer tips  
Categories: Buying a Home   buying tips   condo  


Posted by Cynthia Owens on 2/14/2019

A home is one of the biggest purchases that an individual can make in his or her lifetime. It also may prove to be expensive, particularly for those who fail to plan ahead for the property buying journey.

There is no need to break your budget to acquire your dream residence. In fact, there are many quick, easy ways to guarantee you can keep you finances in check and avoid the risk of spending too much to purchase your ideal house.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to ensure you can buy a quality house at a budget-friendly price.

1. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

You want to buy a home, but you still have no idea how much you can spend on a residence. Thankfully, if you get pre-approved for a mortgage, you can enter the real estate market with a budget in hand. As a result, you will know exactly how much you can spend on a house and can plan accordingly.

Banks and credit unions employ friendly, knowledgeable mortgage specialists who are happy to meet with you. These mortgage specialists can review your income, credit score and other relevant financial data. Then, they can provide you with mortgage options based on your finances.

2. Narrow Your Home Search

Although most people want to buy a mansion, it is important to establish realistic homebuying expectations. Because if you narrow your home search to properties that fall within your price range, you can speed up the property buying journey. Perhaps most important, you can shop around to find a terrific home that corresponds to your budget.

Don't forget to consider homes in a variety of cities and towns too. In some instances, it may prove to be more cost-effective to purchase a house in a small town than a residence in a big city.

3. Evaluate Your Short- and Long-Term Plans

Think about your short- and long-term plans, and you may be better equipped than ever before to map out your home finances for the foreseeable future.

For instance, if you plan to raise a family in the years to come, you may want to consider the costs associated with childcare and other child expenses. This will allow you to budget properly as you search for your dream home.

On the other hand, if you recently accepted a work promotion, your income soon may rise. In this situation, you may be able to increase your homebuying budget due to the fact that extra income will be coming your way.

Lastly, as you get ready to search for a house, you may want to hire a real estate agent. In addition to helping you find a home that matches your budget, a real estate agent will offer expert guidance throughout the property buying journey. He or she will help you prepare for a home inspection, closing and other important steps during the homebuying process. By doing so, a real estate agent will help you seamlessly navigate the homebuying journey and achieve the optimal results.




Categories: Buying a Home   buying tips  


Posted by Cynthia Owens on 2/7/2019

A first-time home seller likely faces an uphill climb if he or she wants to stir up plenty of interest in a house. However, a home seller who plans ahead should have no trouble overcoming any potential hurdles along the home selling journey.

When it comes to selling a house, it is important to remember that a residence's interior can make a world of difference in the eyes of homebuyers as well. If a home seller fails to allocate the necessary time and resources to improve a house's interior, he or she risks missing out on opportunities to stir up interest in a residence.

Lucky for you, we're here to help first-time home sellers find the best ways to transform an ordinary home interior into a stellar one.

Let's take a look at three tips to help first-time home sellers upgrade a house's interior.

1. Remove Clutter

Home clutter adds up over the course of many months or years. But a first-time home seller who understands the impact of clutter can take the necessary steps to remove it.

Ultimately, clutter is an eyesore that may make your home actually appear smaller. Clutter also may make it more expensive and time-consuming than ever before to relocate from one home to the next.

A first-time home seller who hosts a yard sale can sell unnecessary items. Or, a home seller may be able to donate excess items to charity. And if there is lots of junk that fills a house, a home seller should dispose of it as soon as possible.

2. Conduct Extensive Cleaning

A first-time home seller should clean a residence from top to bottom. That way, a home seller can give his or her house a fresh, pristine appearance that homebuyers are sure to appreciate.

Be sure to wipe down kitchen counters, mop the floors and vacuum rugs in each room of your house.

In addition, if you need extra help, don't hesitate to reach out to a professional cleaning company. With professional cleaners at your side, you can speed up the process of upgrading your house's interior.

3. Meet with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent understands what it takes to enhance a house's interior quickly and effortlessly. As such, he or she can help a first-time home seller get a house ready to add to the real estate market.

The right real estate agent will evaluate your home's interior and offer honest, unbiased home interior improvement recommendations. Also, he or she may be able to offer tips to help you differentiate your house from others that are currently available in your city or town.

Of course, a real estate agent is an expert resource who can guide you along the home selling journey too. And if you ever have home selling concerns or questions, this housing market professional will be happy to address them immediately.

Ready to improve your house's interior? Use the aforementioned tips, and a first-time home seller can boost a home's interior and increase the likelihood of a quick, profitable home sale.







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