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  • 8 in 10 homeowners expect the value of their homes to go up either "a little" (55 percent) or "a lot" (26 percent) in the future.
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    October 29, 2014
    Wordless Wednesday: Simple Spider Decoration

    Photo from The Nest


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    October 28, 2014
    Buying Vs. Renting

    Should you rent or buy? Unfortunately, there is no clear cut answer- and it’s different for everyone depending on your situation. Are you in college? Married? Do you have kids? A long term job? What city do you live in? What’s the housing market like? What is your budget? Are you expecting to move soon? Is buying actually cheaper where you live? These are all questions that must be asked when making the decision. Renting is (usually) cheaper in the short term, and great for people who can’t make a huge commitment yet- students, young unmarried couples, people who travel for their jobs- the list goes on. But, buying a home is a solid investment, and gives you a sense of security and ownership. Struggling to decide? Read this article by Teresa Mears at Yahoo Homes News and ask yourself these questions:

    -How long do you plan to stay there?

    -Would you be content if circumstances meant you had to stay longer?

    -How stable are your job and life?

    -How do the costs compare?

    -Do you have enough savings for repairs, if buying?

    Photo Credit: Brian Hawkins 


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    October 27, 2014
    Selling Your Home In Days

    In the current seller’s market, you most likely will sell your home very quickly (and maybe even have a bidding war). There is simply not enough inventory, and a ton of demand. One of my coworkers sold his home in 12 hours, and one of my mom’s friends sold hers in just 4 hours. So, if you need to sell your home FAST- now is the time to do it. But, sometimes just having a strong market isn’t good enough- your home has to be poised to sell. For tips on selling your home even faster, read this post by Liz Marie at the Liz Marie Blog:

    -Declutter and deep clean, tidy up the yard

    -Repair any issues

    -Make the house smell nice- but not overpowering

    -Let in plenty of light

    -Take pets and children with you for showings

    Photo Credit: William Warby 


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    October 24, 2014
    Friday Fun Video: Short Sale Buying Tips
    http://www.dailymotion.com/videoxinuiv

    Helpful for buyers who are interested in a short sale. The biggest benefit? Lowered prices!


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    October 23, 2014
    How To Get An Extremely Messy Home Ready For Sale

    I’ve come clean about this fact before: I am not a neat person. The futon in my room is piled high with clothes and yarn. I have too many books and not enough shelves. On my bedroom floor I have: 3 full boxes of stuff that I haven’t unpacked (after 3 months), a deck of cards scattered everywhere, dirty clothes, candy wrappers, Halloween decorations that I still haven’t put up, and much, much more junk. Now, I’m not “hoarder messy”. I keep trash and dirty dishes out of my room (except the candy wrappers)- and I can see at least 95% of my carpet. I just have a lot of junk and not a lot of motivation to keep it clean. However, if I ever decided to sell my current home, I’d have a pretty difficult time cleaning up. It would take a few weeks of elbow grease. And I know there are people out there worse off than me. So, what do you do if you have an extremely messy home, but need to sell? Where do you even begin? Well, for a good start, read this post by Dana White at A Slob Comes Clean for tips:

    -Take a deep breath, get out a calendar, and outline a game plan

    -Make a list of rooms, prioritizing those with higher traffic

    -Throw stuff away- mercilessly sweep the house with a black trashbag

    -Declutter- get rid of all the stuff you haven’t used in a year

    -Dust, vacuum, repeat.

    Photo Credit: Fionn Kidney 


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    October 22, 2014
    Wordless Wednesday: Gorgeous Windows

     

    Photo from Arteva Homes


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    October 21, 2014
    For Realtors: Online Marketing Trends

    It’s no secret: to be a successful Realtor, you must know how to market your listings online. But, how do you make your homes stand out in the sea of listings? It can be difficult, but this post by Lisa Ross at Tour Wizard has some great tips. Read more for how to market your home online:

    -Use virtual tours so buyers can browse without leaving their home

    -Make your contact details clear and visible

    -Have impressive photos and property descriptions

    -Post everywhere- the more visible you are, the more buyers you can reach

    Photo Credit: Nana G. Agyei 


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    October 20, 2014
    Should You Buy A Home Now…Or Wait?

    How do you know when you are ready to buy a home? Many people have a perfect picture in their heads of how their life will go. Graduate college, get married, buy a house, have a kid- you know, the good, old-fashioned American Dream. But, while that’s the “ideal,” life usually is not that simple. So, when should you NOT buy a home? Read this article by Eleanor Thorne at NC FHA Expert for advice:

    -When your dream home is more than you can afford. NEVER go above your budget. Fall in love with another home, or wait until you have the funds.

    -Weddings: getting married is a huge life event- it’s very costly and requires lots of planning. So is buying a home. Trying to do both at the same time will kill you. Buy a home at least 6-8 months either before or after the wedding.

    -When you have no money after closing. Always have a “cushion” built.

    http://ncfhaexpert.com/housing-news/buy-house/

    Photo Credit: Jonas Nordstrom https://www.flickr.com/photos/windyjonas/

    Should You Buy A Home Now…Or Wait?

     

    How do you know when you are ready to buy a home? Many people have a perfect picture in their heads of how their life will go. Graduate college, get married, buy a house, have a kid- you know, the good, old-fashioned American Dream. But, while that’s the “ideal,” life usually is not that simple. So, when should you NOT buy a home? Read this article by Eleanor Thorne at NC FHA Expert for advice:

     

    -When your dream home is more than you can afford. NEVER go above your budget. Fall in love with another home, or wait until you have the funds.

     

    -Weddings: getting married is a huge life event- it’s very costly and requires lots of planning. So is buying a home. Trying to do both at the same time will kill you. Buy a home at least 6-8 months either before or after the wedding.

     

    -When you have no money after closing. Always have a “cushion” built.

     

    Photo Credit: Jonas Nordstrom 

     


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    October 17, 2014
    Friday Fun Video: Selling Your Home…For Bitcoins?
    http://www.dailymotion.com/videox22e39x

    Bitcoin is an online payment system- you can buy them, pay with them, and shop with them. It’s received lots of fans (some people have gotten rich from trading bitcoins)  as well as lots of critics who question its legitimacy. Personally, if I’m going to be selling my home- I’d prefer to get some old fashioned cash for it.


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    October 16, 2014
    Stigmatized Property And What To Do About It

    When I first heard the term “stigmatized property,” I’m sure my mind went to the same place that everyone else’s did. I thought that a stigmatized property is probably one that won’t sell, because of a major physical flaw. Big dealbreakers, you know, like irreparable foundation damage or a hoarder house. But I was wrong! A stigmatized home is one that has no physical defects, but has a history that makes it unappealing to buyers. Read this post at the Erika Lewis Blog for more info:

    In Real Estate, stigmatized property is property which buyers or tenants may avoid for reasons that are unrelated to its physical condition or features. The common ones are murder, suicide, or even AIDS; in addition to a belief that a house may be haunted with ghosts.

    State laws often provide guidance on how Real Estate licensees should respond to questions relating to the stigmatization of a property. 

    Photo Credit: Geoffrey Chandler 


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