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    September 17, 2014
    Wordless Wednesday: Magical Tiny Cottage

    Photo from Four Lights Houses Small Talk Blog

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    September 16, 2014
    For Sellers: How To Not Sabotage Yourself

    All Realtors have seen it: the self-sabotaging seller. Consciously or unconsciously, they do things to make the sale of their home even more challenging. Maybe it’s because they’re being forced into moving (relocating for a spouse’s job, having to move to a larger or smaller place, etc.), or maybe it’s just in their nature to be difficult and controlling (don’t be that guy!). Either way, not listening to your real estate agent makes her think that you’re not serious about selling your home, and will ultimately end up in exactly that: NOT selling. If you actually want to sell your home, but it’s not working out, then you might actually be the problem. It sounds harsh, and yes, there are tons of other reasons why your home might not be selling, but if you get out of the way and let your Realtor do her job, you have a much better chance. Read this article by Bill Gasset at Max Real Estate Exposure and ask yourself these questions. Are you:

    -Making showings difficult? – Your Realtor is a professional that should know what he or she is doing. Selling is part of the business and showing a home is where Realtors should really shine – but only if you keep out of the way. 

    -Keeping a mess? 

    -Failing to make repairs?

    -Using bad photos on a listing?

    -Overpricing your home?

    -Taking negotiations personally?- What some sellers fail to understand is that it’s not important where a buyer starts but where they end up! Don’t sabotage your home sale by getting too emotional.

    If you are doing any of these things- you may be the problem! Stop sabotaging yourself and get that home sold!

    Photo Credit: Saxon Moseley 

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    September 15, 2014
    Instant Ways To Turn Buyers Away….Before They Even Look At Your Home

    Almost every singly modern day buyer does home searches on the internet. Viewing listings online is a great way to eliminate any deal breakers immediately, before going to visit them in person; it really saves everyone time in the long run. If you’re a seller, your online listing is your key to selling your home. However, many sellers end up sabotaging themselves by not knowing how to market themselves. Of course, a real estate professional will always help you with it, but here are the basic “No-no’s” of online listings, from John Askins at the Houston Real Estate Blog:

    -No photos: One red flag in many buyers’ eyes is the lack of photos for a listing

    -Outlandish claims: Referring to the listing as the “best property on the market” might not be a good idea. Instead, focus on adjectives that are flattering to the property but leave some room for interpretation.

    -Priced too low. You want to price the property competitively but pricing too low may make some buyers suspicious or attract unqualified buyers

    Photo Credit: University Of Salford Press Office 

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    September 12, 2014
    Friday Fun Video: Easy Household Hacks

    Very useful!

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    September 11, 2014
    Selling Your Home? How To Choose The Perfect Realtor

    It’s important to have a Realtor on your side, whether you are buying or selling. But, when you’re selling, it’s especially crucial. Real estate agents will list your home for you, market it, field offers for you, advise you on negotiation, and help you navigate through all the paperwork. But how do you pick which Realtor is right for you? You might be tempted to go with the local “celebrity” agent. You know what I mean- the one with a million billboards up, and her picture on all the shopping carts at the grocery store. You also might want to go with your cousin Jimmy, who just got his license, to be supportive. However, while the celebrity agent (or even your cousin Jimmy!) may be an excellent Realtor, it’s more important to look at your own needs when choosing one. Read this post at RISmedia for questions to ask potential agents.

    Photo Credit: National Assembly For Wales 

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    September 10, 2014
    Wordless Wednesday: Living Room With Natural Light

    Photo from Amy Butler Design

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    September 9, 2014
    First Time Buyer Moves

    Even if you have a Realtor, buying a home for the first time is a huge step- and doing as much research as possible on your own time will seriously pay off. For some smart home buying tips for beginners, look no further than this post by at the Zillow blog. It sets up the home buying process like a chess game, and gives you all the moves you need to win:

    -First move: Get lender-qualified and find a good real estate agent

    -Make sure you plan to be a long term owner

    -Educate yourself

    -Find a nice, affordable property

    -Take your time, don’t do anything on impulse

    Photo Credit: shoobydooby 

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    September 8, 2014
    For Realtors: Safety Tips

    Being a Realtor is extremely exciting! You basically work for yourself, see all kinds of houses, get to meet tons of new people, and are never in the same place for one day. But, while it can be a thrilling job, and definitely refreshing for those used to working in a cubicle all day, real estate has its own set of dangers. There are creeps out there! Fortunately, while most Realtors will not encounter any of these folks, it always pays to be safe. So, what should you do when you’re meeting a client alone? Read this post at Point 2:

    -ALWAYS let someone know where you are going, and how long you will be there

    -Don’t broadcast personal information on your agent website or blog. Guard your home address, after work itinerary and vacation plans closely.

    -Make a habit of using the 10-second rule. When arriving at a new location, whether it’s a listing or not, take 10 seconds to scope out your surroundings. Is there anything or anyone unusual here? What are your escape routes?

    -Keep your cell phone charged and within easy access at all times.

    Photo Credit: Eflon 

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    September 5, 2014
    Friday Fun Video: Dreamy Vacation Homes

    I’ll take one of each, please :)

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    September 4, 2014
    Buyers: What To Ask Your Realtor

    If you’re a first time buyer, you already know the importance of having a real estate agent on your side. They know the ins and outs of the business, and can help navigate you through the process. But, if you’ve never bought a home, you probably don’t know exactly how to utilize your agent’s skills. For those who don’t know what types of questions to ask your Realtor, read this article by Amber Hunt at Quicken Loans:

    -Ask about the roof: What type of roof is it? How old is it? Has it had any recent repairs?

    -Ask about the utility systems: How much are utilities a month? Are electrical and plumbing systems all working properly?

    -Ask about the neighborhood: Be sure to ask about schools, crime rates, and local lifestyle.

    Photo Credit: db Photography 

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