HOMESELLING TIPS: WHAT IS A TAKEAWAY?

homeforsaleConsumers frequently base buying decisions on emotion. They then use logic to rationalize those emotional decisions. Homesellers, working closely with their real estate agents, prepare their homes to evoke positive and personal emotions. An important tactic is to create “takeaways” to keep those fond memories resonating in prospective buyers.

The Letter:

Consider writing a personal letter from you describing your experience of falling in love with the home when you were the buyer. The letter could describe the warm friendships you’ve established in the neighborhood. Or it could recall joyous holidays around the home with pictures taken during special times.

Recall a memorable moment of coming home after the birth of a child or after a vacation. Buyers can relate to these things emotionally. They reinforce positive feelings buyers experienced in your home. To satisfy their logic, describe the loving care you’ve given the home.

First touch upon the emotions, then appeal to buyer’s rationality.

List remodels, updates or upgrades you’ve done and include anything that gives buyers a sense of confidence in your home’s current condition. Be sure to mention any pricey features you’ve added.

The Brochure:

Another effective takeaway is a brochure using high-quality color photographs of your home’s interior and exterior. Add captions or short descriptions that help buyers remember. Again, appeal to the buyer’s logic—a descriptive sentence followed by a list of key marketing details and the tender loving care you’ve given as owner.

If you’re good at writing warm personal letters or if you have the ability to create a professional-looking brochure, it’s quite acceptable to save money by doing it yourself. If not, turn to professionals to create compelling takeaways that ensure a lasting emotional connection with buyers.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

CURIOUS WHAT YOUR HOME IS WORTH?

Curious what your home is worth? Get your “Bestimate” from Berskshire Hathaway HomeServices Abbott Realtors. For more detailed information, call one of our offices and we’ll be happy to help you. Just scroll down and enter your info…
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

COZY FIREPLACES SELL HOMES

Article courtesy of Realtor.com

fireplaceIf you want to generate sales heat for your home, don’t neglect the fireplace: A cozy fireplace is often on the top of a home buyers’ wish list.

In fact, a working fireplace with a classic design and mantle can add as much as $12,000 to the value of your home, according to the National Association of REALTORS®.

No one wants a fireplace that emits smoke and gases into the home, has a crumbling chimney or is an eyesore. However, a functional fireplace and beautiful mantle can add ambience and overall value to your home at a relatively modest cost.

Here are three reasons why a fireplace can fuel higher home prices.

Cold Climate Necessity

In colder climates, a fireplace is a necessity. While it may not be the home’s primary or only heat source, a fireplace can provide welcome relief if a winter storm happens to knock out power and gas.

Additional Warmth

In any climate, potential buyers are drawn to fireplaces because they provide a sense of hearth and home. Even if a fireplace won’t be used frequently, it can provide a focal point for the living room or entire house.

Because a contractor can easily install a gas fireplace—and you no longer need to vent fireplaces through a wall to the outside with a masonry chimney—you now can find fireplaces throughout the house.

You may even see them in bathrooms and bedrooms, as well as in living rooms and family rooms.

Financial Value on Budget

If your existing fireplace looks burned out, a cleaning and upgrade are worth the expense. You don’t want an unsafe fireplace leading to a failed home inspection. The cost of adding a fireplace in a home without one will likely pay off in the long run.

The typical cost of a standard gas fireplace is $600 to $3,000 without installation. Electric fireplaces run about $1,200 to $1,500, and they usually generate enough heat to take the edge off one or two rooms. Re-lining an old chimney is typically less than $5,000.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

WHAT STAYS WITH THE HOUSE WHEN YOU MOVE?

Article courtesy of Realtor.com

SOLD

When you’re selling your home, it is natural to assume that anything you can safely remove is yours to keep—like the light fixtures you painstakingly cleaned and repaired, or the appliances you bought last year—but the buyer may want some of those items, too.

Rather than keep everything, you should decide what you can keep and what you should leave as a way to entice buyers into making an offer. Here’s what you should consider:

What stays with the house?

Generally, certain items stay with the house when you sell and move. Here’s what to expect:

Built-ins: Built-in bookshelves, benches, and pull-out furniture generally stays inside the home.

Landscaping: Trees, shrubs, and any flowers planted in the ground should stay in the yard.

Wall mounts: If you have TV wall mounts or picture mounts that might damage the wall if you remove them, it is a good idea to leave them in place when you move.

Custom-fit items: If you have custom-made curtains, plantation shutters, or blinds, leave them on the windows and doors.

Hardware: If you upgraded the knobs and drawer pulls in your bathrooms and the kitchen, you’ll either have to leave those behind or install replacements before you move.

Alarm systems: Wireless alarm systems are designed to be removed. Otherwise, leave the alarm monitoring station attached and either relocate or cancel the monitoring service.

Smoke detectors: Smoke detectors and sprinkler systems should stay in the house, especially if you plan to move before selling the house.

What can you take?

While you’re expected to leave some items behind, in general your belongings are yours to keep. Here are some examples:

Patio furniture, lawn equipment, and play sets: If you have a wooden swing set in the backyard and a bistro table on the front porch, take those items with you.

Appliances: Some lenders require that a home have an oven installed before approving a loan, but for all other appliances, it’s up to you to decide what you will take and what you will offer as part of the home.

Some light fixtures: Generally, homeowners leave light fixtures behind, but if you’re attached to a certain fixture, you can make arrangements with the buyer to take it.

Built-in kitchen tools: If you can safely remove a mounted spice rack or the pasta arm, you can take it with you.

Rugs, basic curtains, wreaths: Small decor items like rugs or curtain rods that can be safely removed can be taken.

What should you consider leaving?

Some of your personal items can be used to help sell your house—or increase the asking price. Before you take everything just to take it, consider offering some hot items like the following:

Appliances: Homeowners, especially new homeowners, don’t always have their own appliances. Many buyers would be more likely to place an offer on a home if it came fully stocked with appliances.

Custom swing and play sets: If you have a swing set or playhouse your children have outgrown and you notice a potential buyer has children, offer to include the item with the deal.

Kitchen built-ins: Built-in spice racks, pantry organization, and windowsill shelves can really help sell a kitchen. Consider offering the items to an interested buyer.

Light fixtures, curtains, rugs, and other upgrades: If you’ve upgraded the light fixtures or have custom rugs in the entryway, a buyer may be willing to increase his or her offer to keep those items in the home.

If you’re not sure what would entice a buyer, ask your Realtor® to provide suggestions.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

IS REPLACING CARPET WITH HARDWOOD WORTH IT?

Article courtesy of Realtor.com

Hardwood-floorThinking about replacing your floors? Especially if you have carpet, the choice seems clear: Hardwood floors are preferred by home buyers and renters across the United States.

But consider carefully whether hardwood floors are the right choice for every room in your home—and what type you might want to install for the best resale value.

As you weigh investing in your floors, you’ll need to evaluate your budget, the preferences and traditions in your community and your own personal taste. Some people only want to step on soft carpet, while others prefer hard surfaces. In some warm climates such asFlorida, ceramic tile flooring rivals hardwood in popularity.

In more traditional markets, tastes still lean toward oak floors, but some owners of more contemporary homes are choosing to stain their wood floors in different colors. Other trends in hardwood include wider planks, the use of reclaimed wood or hand-scraped wood that looks antique and exotic species of wood such as hickory or walnut.

Homeowners on a tight budget also may want to look into laminate flooring, which offers the look of wood at a lower price point.

Keep in mind that people with allergies typically want a hard surface that won’t hold dust. You should also think about the care and maintenance required for your floor surface since you’ll need to take care of it for years. Hardwood flooring lasts longer than carpet, can be easier to keep clean and can be refinished.

In the end, though, the decision about whether to install hardwood or carpeting in a bedroom should be based on your personal preference, at least if you intend to stay in the home for years.

Hardwood Flooring: It’s What Buyers Want

According to HGTV, the top request of home buyers and renters when looking for a home is hardwood flooring. In fact, a study of homebuyer preferences by USA Today using data from the National Association of REALTORS® found that 54% of home buyers were willing to pay more for a home with hardwood flooring.

Installing hardwood flooring can cost between $9 and $12 per square foot, compared with about $3 to $5 per square foot for carpet—so some homeowners opt to install hardwood only in some rooms rather than throughout their home. However, carpet typically needs to be replaced if it becomes stained or worn out. Good quality carpet can last about 10 to 15 years, while hardwood can last forever.

The return on investment for installing hardwood will vary according to your market and other factors, but hardwood flooring can often help your home sell faster.

Reasons to Install Carpet

While many buyers and homeowners prefer hardwood flooring throughout their home, some people prefer carpet in the bedrooms—because they like a softer surface. When you live in a two or three-story home, carpet also helps reduce noise.

If you would still prefer hardwood floors throughout your home, you could use put area rugs in your bedroom.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail