Selling Tips

Preparing Your Home for an Open House

Posted on by Lisa Barton

Preparing for the sale of your home is one thing — finding and working with a real estate agent, finding all necessary paperwork, working on your search for new living quarters, etc. But preparing for your open house is a whole other process, and it can be time consuming if you aren’t sure where to start. You want to make a good, lasting impression, but you also want to be sure to showcase the house itself — not your family photos or interior decorating skills. Here are a few tips on what to tend to before your doors open. 

Maintain the Exterior

The interior might be the logical focus when you’re opening your doors to let people freely tour your home, but before they walk up the front steps, they need to be attracted to the exterior. Clean up the windows, siding, and sidewalks the best you can (a pressure washer can be your best friend), and make sure your house numbers and mailbox look clean and well-maintained. If they are looking a bit worse for wear, they’re quick and cheap to replace. Also consider putting potted plants on the porch or adding window boxes for a splash of green. 

Clean Everything

When you’re cleaning, start with the obvious stuff: Pack up the clutter, like mail, magazines, extra blankets, your collection of cookie jars, etc. Basically, make sure that in every room, the house — not your personal belongings — is what is on display. With all of the surfaces cleared of unnecessary items, it’s time to turn to the nitty-gritty details. If your carpets are showing their age, have them shampooed. If the bathroom grout is less than white, give them a solid scrub. A potential homeowner doesn’t want to keep track of the move-in chores they’ll have to do. Also, pay attention to the way every room smells. If it’s a bit stale, spray some air neutralizer or use a wax melter to infuse pleasant smells, but stay away from heavy or flowery scents. 

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9 Reasons Why Some Homes Sell Faster

Posted on by Lisa Barton

You just listed your house and so did your next door neighbor. A week passes by, the neighbors have had four showings opposed to your one showing. Now you begin to question yourself, as well as your realtor. What are you doing wrong and how can you pick up the foot traffic?   

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Considering Downsizing? Here’s Some Important Planning Information

Posted on by Marsha Keller

Are you considering downsizing? Maybe thinking of selling your large home and moving into something smaller? In today's digital age it's increasingly difficult to organize essential personal, financial and medical information. In the past, you could keep paper copies in safes, file cabinets or with an accountant. But in today's new electronic world, most paper copies never reach your mailbox. 

The world has changed and that's why working with a Senior Real Estate Specialist (SRES) is so important. A (SRES) has special training designed to help you maneuver through all the challenges you will encounter through your journey and transisiton into the next phase of your life. Unfortunately, most people do a better job preparing for their taxes, than preparing for the future. Consider how not preparing now will impact the future for your loved ones. This is a guide to give you the first steps in securing the most important information. Here are some simple steps to help you prepare for the future:

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Thinking of Putting Your House on the Market ? - Tips for Home Sellers

Posted on by Lisa Barton

Thinking of putting your house on the market?. Once you have made the decision to sell (and enlisted the help of a highly competent agent, of course) you need to do everything possible to make your property stand-out and command the attention of buyers.  Here are some tips on what to do and why:

  • Remember, first impressions count, really count! The curb appeal of your house is critical. Your house must look tidy and well cared for. You want the potential buyers to be excited about coming inside!  Make sure the grass is neat, the hedges are trimmed and any decaying limbs are pruned from trees. Plant fresh flowers to add color or enhance planters you have in the entry. This is the time to paint the trim, change the old mailbox, pressure wash the driveway and sidewalk, re-hang or replace shutters and paint the front door. If the door knob and lock are looking shabby they should be polished or replaced too. The entrance hallway should be welcoming. You can add a bench or decorate a table with fresh flowers.
  • Before putting your house on the market make any minor repairs.  All appliances, doors, windows, and drawers should be in good working order.  This would be a very good time to have a home inspection and address any issues found by the inspector.
  • Declutter and depersonalize your house (including the closets, bookshelves and walls). Buyers need to see themselves in the house, and the more of your personal effects they see, the more difficult this will be for them. Remember, you’re moving anyway so this is a great time to start packing.

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Feng Shui Tips When Your Home is for Sale

Posted on by Lisa Barton

Terence Conran once said, “Home is the heart of life…Home is where were we feel at ease, where we belong, where we can create surroundings that reflect our tastes and pleasures…Making a home is a form of creativity open to everyone.” These words are especially important to remember when your home is for sale. To create those surroundings that will bring harmony to our lives (and to the lives of potential buyers), here are  some simple Feng Shui rules to follow:

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Insurance Tips for Florida Homeowners during Hurricane Season

Posted on by Lisa Barton

Hurricane Season Insurance Checklist

Hurricane season officially began June 1st.  You may have mapped out your evacuation route but have you reviewed your insurance coverage to make sure you are properly protected? Here are a few things to consider:

Homeowners Coverage

Check your policy limit; is it enough to rebuild your home?  Remember, the real estate value of a house is not the same as the cost to rebuild.

Consider these homeowners coverages and check your limits:

  • Guaranteed Replacement Cost – pays the full amount to rebuild your home whatever the ultimate cost.
  • Ordinance and Law Coverage – pays a specified amount for rebuilding to new building codes, should your community adopt stricter codes. Older homes may need more coverage.
  • Coverage for screened enclosures - Some companies include this coverage, others may add it by endorsement. Make sure you know what coverage you have and what limit applies.
  • What is your deductible - this should be is stated in your policy. Policies often have different deductibles for hurricanes and all other perils.

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