Selling your home

The following articles cover topics related to how to sell your home including the recommendation of a home inspection or an appraisal before putting your property on the market, and about the winter housing market.
1.    Motivated Sellers, Better Prices and Less Competition
2.    Lower Anxieties/Improve Marketability
3.    5 Ways To Improve Your Home Appraisal
4.    Real Estate 411

Staging tips:  update October 30, 2015

  1. Baking cookies before a showing, and other scents: each person’s reaction to fragrance and scents is positive. You can’t predict how much negative response can occur.
  2. Plants in an empty home need maintenance; fake plants are…fake. Withering plants and fake plants don’t leave a positive impression.
  3. If you expect your buyers to look past a deficit: don’t; if you see one, fix it. Be completely prepared when showing your home.
  4. Lightly staging a room is a disadvantage: do it totally or not at all.
  5. Hiring a staging professional and imposing your own taste: you are not the professional.
  6. Staging with all the same period furniture. Mixed furniture works well and is affordable.
  7. Taking the shoes off when entering: No, not for a showing.
  8. Pulling out stages when a sale is pending: ill-advised, what if it falls through?
  9. Staging will solve all problems: No.
  10. Staging is easy: if it were, why do you think there are professionals who are paid to do it?

Click here for more details:

Motivated Sellers, Better Prices and Less Competition

The Winter Home Buyer Report indicates that winter is an excellent time for buyers who haven’t been able to purchase a home during the competitive spring and summer months.  This is the finding released in November by

Obviously when demand is high and inventory is low, home prices rise.  This makes it especially difficult for first-time home buyers. In such a competitive market, all-cash offers and bidding wars for the small inventory of home make it a huge challenge for buyers, especially those new to the housing market.

“This summer and spring home buying season was particularly challenging for buyers, especially first-time home buyers trying to compete with all-cash offers and bidding wars because of reduced inventory. Motivated sellers, better prices and less competition between buyers are some of the top reasons winter home buyers are interested in purchasing a home during the colder months of the year.”—from the November report.

The report finds that 34% report that during the winter there isn’t enough inventory.  29% believe that winter weather makes it unpleasant to house-hunt.

With the distractions of weather and the holidays so prevalent in winter months, the real estate market seems to slow.  Even when weather isn’t a factor, there seems to be a disinclination to schedule a move in the winter.

Yet it is recommended that winter is an advantageous time to sell a home, before the new year begins.

Call your realtor and get help with how to sell your home, plus more details about the winter housing market in Napa.

Lower Anxieties/Improve Marketability

One of the ways to improve marketability of your home and perhaps to lower your anxiety when you are putting your home up for sale is to have a home inspection. Even though an owner may be anxious about what the report will show especially fear that any repairs would be costly, most sellers are willing to disclose all that they know about their home to a potential seller.  Better that the buyer know about all issues before an offer is made than afterward.

Home inspection reports can contain surprises for both sellers and buyers.  Therefore, if the seller has the home inspected even before putting it up for sale, there won’t be any surprises.  You have the choice of repairing or disclosing it to the buyer.

Most buyers will order a home inspection regardless but at least when they make an offer they will feel confident about what they are purchasing.  At least as a seller you’ve done your best to disclose what you know about the home you are offering for sale

Sometimes in the process of selling a home, every expense comes under close scrutiny.  A home inspection,  usually about $500, is not something to be disregarded.  It’s an important part of selling your home.  For a home that sells for $175K, the fee would be less than .03% of the sale price.

Another way of increasing the marketability of your home is to offer a home protection plan.  It will boost buyer confidence.  The buyer benefits by avoiding unexpected expenses for items covered for the first year of owning their new home.

You can always contact me for recommendations of home inspectors or home protection plans.

5 Ways To Improve Your Home Appraisal

Some may harbor the idea that if you’re very friendly with the appraiser, your home will receive a higher appraisal value.  However, in truth appraisers have their own methods and engaging them in conversation while they are doing their work would probably interfere with their concentration and ability to do the best job.

There are things you can do to ensure that your home is seen from the best perspective.

•    Appraisers are usually in the home for less than an hour.  Make sure to point out features that you have questions about that may not be easily noticed.
•    Make sure your dog doesn’t provide interference and distraction.
•    Photos will be taken of the house’s exterior so make sure it looks its best.
•    Your home sound have a pleasant odor.
•     List of updates that you’ve done within in the last two years such as electrical and plumbing upgrades should be provided, including receipts of the work done.  Work amounting to $500 or more should go on that list.
•    De-clutter so that you create a sense of space and cleanliness.  Clear your kitchen counter, bathroom areas, end tables of unnecessary items.  You might even box them temporarily.

Although you may be anxious to see the appraisal report, the appraiser may take sometime to find comparable properties which are used to generate a report.  Be patient.

Real Estate 411

Most people think about the need for a real estate agent when they are looking to buy or sell a home. During such periods, it’s natural to turn to your real estate agent when you have questions. Yet most people involved in either side of the process are homeowners most of the time.  As an owner of a home, if you have questions, where do you turn for reliable solid recommendations?

Our purpose is to be the service answering the questions of a 411 real estate call.  We intend to have a special group of friends and past customers who turn to us as real estate professionals for all questions related to your home.  We have a “selfish” goal in mind:  we want to spread the word of how much we can help through referrals.  Those who trust and know us can refer their family and friends for all home-related questions.

When you elect to receive our newsletters and updates, you will receive through email and FB/Twitter excellent articles to help you with home ownership.  You’ll learn ways to better maintain your property, save needless expense, manage finances, your debit and your risks.

Help us be your go-to person for anything related to real estate.  We stand ready to help you moe in the right direction if we find we don’t have the answers.

Call us.  We are here to help you, your friends and family.

The original articles were archived.  They can be found in the archives, see sidebar.