Selling a Home in Pennsylvania
Attention Real Estate Investors:
Anti-Flipping Rule Suspended
By Evelyn Fielding
Real estate investors and house flippers all over the United States are celebrating: HUD has suspended its anti-flipping 90-day seasoning rule for a year. This means you can buy a HUD-owned home and flip it immediately to an FHA insured buyer—no need to hang on to the property (and a mortgage) for three full months, or turn FHA-insured... Read More
Invest in Kitchen or Bathroom Remodeling to Sell Your Home
By Stephanie Smith
Maybe it seems counter-intuitive to invest in remodeling your home just before you put it up for sale, but wise remodeling choices offer a great return on investment.
Kitchens and bathrooms are two critical areas that impact how prospective buyers view your entire home. Out-of-date kitchens and bathrooms can literally scare... Read More
10 signs of overpricing a home:
- No showings.
- No second showings.
- Showings but no offer.
- Only "low-ball offers."
- Buyers look at your home but buy another.
- Top agents have turned down the listing.
- Your listing expires unsold.
- You are on your third listing with a third agent at the same price.
- No other homes in the area have sold for that price.
- You believe your home is the best home, and need the money.
Beyond Price: Deal Breakers
By Stephanie Tallman Smith
Photo: © Dreamstime
Everyone has that one item that is non-negotiable and if the house they are considering lacks it, they will not budge. The sellers could be practically giving the house away but if it doesn't come with that one special feature, they can forget about landing that particular buyer. For some it could be a swimming pool, while others would buy a house with only one bathroom before they would consider buying one without a fireplace.
Knowing your deal breaker is important when shopping for a house. While you may be able to give a little on price, if you like to have fifty people over for Thanksgiving dinner and only have room for about thirty, the house you are considering will never truly be home. Make your non-negotiable items clear from the beginning. While some agents may try to convince you to look at other properties anyway, most will thank you for your honesty and focus their efforts on finding you your dream home.
Some of the most common deal breakers are:
• No fireplace
• No shower
• Not enough bathrooms or bathrooms are too small
• Not enough bedrooms or bedrooms are too small
• No place to put the dream Christmas tree
• Living/Family room isn't large enough to host family get-togethers
• Kitchen is too small
• No off-street parking
Be realistic about your deal breaker. Every home on the market has something the seller wishes they could have changed. If you find it hard to find any property that even remotely meets your standards, be prepared to reconsider your deal breaker. It could be that you really aren't serious about buying or perhaps you have unrealistic expectations about home ownership.
Knowing your deal breaker doesn't have to make home buying more difficult. On the contrary, it can improve your chances of finding the perfect home where you might just find yourself living happily ever after.
What is the right asking price for your home?
Factors That Determine The Value of Your Home
By E. E. Kane
A quick sale of your home may depend on not overpricing your property, especially in a competitive market. To determine the value of your home, ask your realtor for a comparative market analysis (CMA). Here are some factors that your realtor will consider when pricing your home to sell.
The most important factor that affects your home's value is location. A house in a desirable neighborhood will be much more valuable than the same house in a less desirable neighborhood. Some things to consider are, good schools, proximity to shopping, parks and recreation. Also take into consideration that being close to a good job market will add value to your property.
The square footage of your home and property are a large factor when determining its value. Your home's value increases based on the number of bedrooms and bathrooms that it has. But whether you will get a fair market value. or more, depends on your home's condition.
If your home needs a new roof, heating or cooling system, this will detract from the value of the home. Even things like dated counters and floors can negatively affect your home's value.
It is usually a good idea to update your home, but consider carefully how much of an investment you can afford in the house you are selling. If your home is in need of updating, any repairs or improvements you make will only bring the home back into the fair market value range. It will not necessarily increase the value of your home. To ensure you get the best return on your home improvement dollars, consult with your realtor before making major home improvements.
If you don't want to take on a major home improvement project, such as adding rooms, investing a bit of time and money to paint walls can make an amazing difference in the appearance of your home. Also taking care of the small, obvious repairs and fix-ups will convey to buyers and brokers that you have been a conscientious caretaker of your property.
|Make the Most of Your Home's Assets|
By J. A. Young
Photo: © dreamstime.com
When preparing to sell a home, it is necessary to assess the house's main selling points. A house's best features don't always speak for themselves to buyers and they might require some highlighting on the part of the sellers. This article discusses ways to make the most of your homes best features.
The assessment process should go room by room. While no room or feature is likely to be completely ideal in every instance, the goal is to play down any negatives and play up all the positives. If the master bedroom is on the small side, then it will be necessary to convey its cozy appeal. Perhaps it has a great view that can be emphasized with new window treatments. Maybe excess furniture could be removed so the room appears larger.
Consider the special features each room offers that make it unique from other rooms.
|For example, a kitchen with a built-in hutch might display an elegant collection of china as opposed to various boxes of dry cereal.|
Or, a breakfast nook could be set with matching place settings to give potential buyers an idea of its daily use. Play up high ceilings with dramatic light fixtures in keeping with the home's architectural style. Instead of covering them up, keep new windows visible to buyers and highlight them with simple and spare accents.
Sometimes the key to a sale is simply highlighting the home's extraordinary feature(s). This might be a loft in the garage or a covered patio. These extraordinary assets must be kept neat and orderly in order to show them off in their best light. Rather than fill a spacious wrap-around porch with loads of bushy plant containers, place several well-chosen healthy plants in a few spots to highlight all of the room.
The idea for sellers is to make the home stand out by focusing on its best attractions. So, do not keep new carpeting covered up and be sure to draw buyers' eyes to hidden features in some way.
Is Refinancing Your Home Right for You?
By Susan M. Keenan
Homeowners often find themselves in a position to refinance an existing home loan. The reasons to do so are varied. In many cases, the interest rates on the currently available mortgages have dropped and the homeowner can realize monthly savings if their home is refinanced.
If your income has increased dramatically and you can now afford a home loan with a shorter term, you may want to refinance. Remember that on shorter term loans the monthly payments will be larger, but the loan will also be paid off much more quickly.
Some homeowners find themselves in the uncomfortable position of dealing with rising interest rates as their adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) switch up to the next level.
Higher mortgage payments can place homeowners in financial bind that srceams for the relief of a home refinance.
If you are a homeowner who originally purchased a home as a starter home but have decided to live there long term, the original home loan might not be amenable to this new circumstance. In this case, refinancing the home can be a wise option.
If you are a homeowner with an interest only mortgage, you may prefer to build up equity in your home now, rather than waiting for the interest only portion of your home loan to switch over. Refinancing an existing interest only mortgage can bring savings over an extended period of time and help build up equity faster.
Refinancing a home is also a good way to get additional cash for remodeling purposes. Depending on the terms of the refinance loan, you might be able to borrow more than you need to pay off the existing loan. This will give you additional funds for remodeling projects.
Whatever the reason for refinancing a loan, the end result is usually a positive one. The homeowner typically saves money, builds up equity faster, or both.
Selling your home is an involved process that affects your family and your future. Before you begin this process, you will want to ensure that you have the most up-to-date information. When should you sell? How do you get the best price? What kinds of renovations should be made prior to the sale?
These home selling reports will assist you in answering the many questions that arise during the home selling process. When you're armed with the right information, and an experienced real estate professional, you'll be closer to reaching your goal - selling your home fast, and for the best price.
Please contact me if you have any questions about selling your home anywhere in Philadelphia and surrounding counties.
Below, select desired reports and complete the form provided.
|Selling Your Home: Should You Lower Your Asking Price?|
By Sally Aquire
Photo: © Yuri Arcurs - Dreamstime
Setting the right price is crucial when selling your home. If you overestimate the value of your house, you risk alienating potential buyers who will not be able to afford to buy it. On the other hand, pricing your house at far less than it is worth can leave potential buyers wondering whether it has hidden problems. Having your house professionally valued can help you to set a fair price, but what happens if this price is not fetching any buyers? At this point, homeowners often toy with the idea of lowering their asking price to clinch a sale. However, some homeowners would be better off waiting for the difficult market to ride itself out, especially if the house in question is desirable in terms of size, location and commodities.
The selling season in which you first put your house up for sale can have an impact on how long it takes to sell. The housing market typically starts to warm up during the winter months and reaches a first 'peak' from April through to June. After the summer passes, the selling season tends to slow down again until a second 'peak' begins from September to Thanksgiving. Between Thanksgiving and New Year, the housing market slows down again.
Listing your house during one of the 'peak' selling seasons is a good way to ensure that it will receive as much interest as possible from potential buyers.
Standing Your Ground
In a difficult market, houses can take up to a year to sell as the number of sellers is greater than the number of potential buyers. In this situation, it is often unrealistic to expect a quick sale, so try not to panic if your house does not sell quickly after first going on the market. If your house is in a location 'hot spot' or is particularly desirable, it makes little sense to lower your price, as this type of house is likely to attract plenty of interest from potential buyers unless it is grossly overpriced.
Cutting Your Losses
If your house has been on the market for a year or more without a sale, it is probably time to lower the price. As some time has passed since it was put on the market, you may need to take a significant hit on the asking price to interest potential buyers. This is obviously not ideal, but it may be the only way to clinch a sale if you have been unable to secure a sale at the current asking price.
Many buyers look upon price reductions as an indication that you have admitted defeat on the previous asking price, and will often come in with an offer that is below the new asking price. In this situation, you need to decide whether you can afford to accept the reduced offer or whether you are prepared to wait for a different offer. The latter can be a risky gamble as a higher offer will not necessarily be forthcoming, especially in a difficult market.
Jump Start the Sale of Your Home
By Stephanie Tallman Smith
Photo: © Steve Rosset/ Dreamstime
Knowing what to do when the market hits a bump in the road can mean the difference between a fast and painless sale and a home that sits unsold on the market for months. This knowledge can also help home sellers enjoy a better selling price and more favorable sales terms.
In the past sellers have resorted to some pretty strange marketing tactics, from offers of free vacations to adding a fancy sports car to the home sale package. Even though these types of tactics grab headlines they are not particularly effective at selling houses. Most home buyers are simply looking for a great place to live at a great price, not a fancy vacation package or new set of wheels.
The best incentives are the tried and true, including:
Price Reduction - No seller likes to reduce the asking price of a home, but in a buyer’s market this step may be the most effective. Buyers are price-sensitive by nature, whether the purchase in question is a car or a big screen TV. A little bit of wiggle room on the price can do wonders to get a home sold fast.
Offering Help with Closing Costs - Many home buyers, especially first time buyers, find it difficult to come up with the funds for a sizeable down payment and closing costs. Offering to help with closing costs can often jump start the deal and win over reluctant buyers. In many cases simply offering to pay some or all of the closing costs can be just as effective, or even more so, as a sizeable reduction in the asking price.
Help with the Down Payment - Offering help with the down payment can be an effective strategy as well. With home prices at historical highs in many parts of the country, buyers are finding it difficult to put down the traditional 20% on the homes they buy. Homeowners need to be careful when using this strategy however, since they are effectively financing part of the down payment.
Including a Home Warranty - Adding a warranty on the plumbing, heating and cooling systems and other elements of the home can be a remarkably effective sales strategy. A home warranty provides much-needed peace of mind for buyers, and the cost to sellers is generally only a couple of hundred dollars.
Low-Cost Improvements to Help Sell Your Home
By Kimberly Ray
With an ever-increasing number of homes on the market, it's essential to give your home an edge over others in order to receive acceptable offers within a reasonable time frame. There are easy ways to give your home the punch it needs to capture attention and bring in the highest possible offers. These low-cost improvements will help sell your home by giving it a "wow" factor and making it more appealing to potential buyers.
Kitchen - Improve the look of your kitchen by replacing your old kitchen sink and faucet. Consider investing in a shiny porcelain sink or an indestructible granite sink along with a new high-quality faucet, sprayer, and soap dispenser. You can purchase these items from a major home improvement retailer and have them professionally installed for less than $500.00.
Bathroom - If your bathtub or shower stall has seen better days, instead of dealing with the mess and expense of replacement, consider professional refinishing. Add shiny new faucets and a rain-style showerhead for a completely new and impressive look. Take the project a step further by adding a lighted mirror, and stage your home with color-coordinated towels and accessories.
Living room - If your living room, family room, or great room needs something special to make it more appealing to potential buyers, consider new flooring and a new coat of paint in neutral colors. You don't have to get the most expensive flooring to make a good impression, but going with better padding can give cheaper carpeting a more luxurious feel. Complete the room by staging it with color-coordinated accessories such as throw pillows, lamps, and vibrant floral arrangements.
Dining Room - You can turn an ordinary dining room into an impressive showplace with the addition of a new light fixture or chandelier. A beautiful chandelier or light fixture is the focal point of a dining room, and it will certainly make a difference in the overall look of your dining room. Light fixtures come in all styles, sizes, and price ranges, and there are beautiful fixtures to meet every budget. Add room enhancing light bulbs to make the true colors in the room pop out like never before.
Interest Rates are down. How about Home Equity Loan?
What is Home Equity?
By Susan M. Keenan
The equity of a home is calculated by taking the current market value of a home and subtracting the debt owed on the property. For example, the current market value of the home is $250,000 and the current amount of money the homeowner still owes to his lender is $115,000. If you subtract the debt of $115,000 from the market value of $250,000, the home's equity is $135,000.
Since the initial down payment builds up equity in the property, the larger the down payment on the home, the larger the amount of equity in the home. In many cases, a larger down payment will equate to a better positioning stance for acquiring a loan as well.
Most often, the home and its accompanying land and structures are used as collateral to secure the mortgage.
The value of the property is used to ensure the lender that he will not lose his investment.
Once a homeowner has lived on the property for several years and paid into the home loan or mortgage, the equity of the property increases according to the amount of each monthly payment that went toward the principal portion of the loan. If more than one loan has been taken out using the home as security for the loan, the balance of each loan must be subtracted from the current market value of the property to obtain the current equity.
As you can see from the graph, the mortgage interest rates are still
low and overall they are lower in the last three years. Now is a
great time to REFINANCE your mortgage before the rates go up!
Lower your monthly payment, get extra cash you need to pay off
high interest debt or finish remodeling your home.
Call me and I'll be happy to disscuss your options with you.