Our Real Estate Blog
If you want to purchase a home, it may be beneficial to check out the residences available in a major city. In fact, there are many reasons to pursue a city house, and these include:
1. You can live near a variety of attractions and landmarks.
Most cities provide quick, easy access to attractions and landmarks. And if you purchase a city residence, you can explore a wide range of attractions and landmarks any time you choose.
Of course, it generally helps to plan ahead if you intend to buy a city residence. If you enter the real estate market with a homebuying strategy in hand, you can narrow your city house search to residences near your preferred attractions and landmarks.
2. You can upgrade or downgrade from your current residence.
If you find your current residence no longer matches your needs, don't stress. Houses are available in cities around the country so you can upgrade or downgrade from your current home.
Oftentimes, it helps to get pre-approved for a mortgage before you start to explore city residences. If you are pre-approved for a mortgage, you'll know exactly how much you can spend on a city home. Then, you can hone your city house search and speed up the homebuying journey.
3. You can find a residence close to family members and friends in the city.
If your family members and friends frequently rave about life in the city, now may be the perfect time to join them. And if you kick off a city house search, you can find a great home that allows you to live close to loved ones.
The city real estate market often fluctuates, and a housing sector that favors buyers today may shift into sellers' favor tomorrow. Thus, if you want to buy a city home near loved ones, you should allocate time and resources to learn about the local housing sector. Because if you have housing market insights at your disposal, you can differentiate a buyer's market from a seller's market and prepare accordingly.
As you get ready to launch a search for a home in the city of your choice, you may want to hire a real estate agent too. By employing a real estate agent, you can get the help you need to streamline your city house search.
Typically, a real estate agent will meet with you, find out where you want to reside in your city of choice and help you budget for the homebuying journey. He or she also will keep you up to date about city residences that meet your homebuying criteria. And if you find a city residence that you want to buy, a real estate agent will help you submit a competitive offer to purchase this home.
Simplify the process of locating and purchasing your ideal city home. Hire a real estate agent today, and you can receive extensive assistance at each stage of the property buying journey.
Your roof is an important part of your home, and for something of its size, it is surprisingly delicate. Even minor problems can have a lasting impact on the integrity of your home. Learning how to spot some of the most common problems allows you to seek out help when you need to. Any one of these signs should trigger a call to a roofing company, just in case:
You see damage: You should never climb out on the roof yourself, but if you see visible signs of damage, you should call a roofing company. They can perform a full inspection and make sure that your roof is in the best possible shape. Damage doesn't mean a huge gaping hole; missing shingles, shingles that are curled or curved up and split shingles can lead to more extensive damage in a short period of time.
There are leaks: If your roof is leaking, then you definitely need assistance. Even a small trickle means moisture is where it shouldn't be -- and that will lead to more extensive damage. A drip or leak could also lead to mold growth and impact the air quality in your home.
You hear rodents: Squirrels, raccoons and other rodents love your roof and attic, particularly in the colder months. If you hear the pitter patter of little feet, then one or more of these critters could have moved in, damaging your roof in the process. For safety reasons and to protect your roof, you should have any animal signs investigated right away.
Your neighbors have roof problems: If you live in a community where the homes were all built from the same materials at the same time, then those materials could begin to fail at the same time, too. If you notice a lot of homes in the neighborhood getting repairs, it is a good idea to get an inspection soon, just in case.
You're planning on moving: If you want to sell your home soon, a roof inspection lets you find problems early and make any needed repairs before you list your home. This can prevent problems at closing and ensure you get the best possible price for your home.
Roof issues can go from minor to expensive in a flash and they won't go away on their own. If you spot one of these signs, the best thing to do is to get it repaired right away. Delay, and you could be looking at a more costly and extensive repair.
When you're considering buying real estate as an investment, it's a good idea to weigh the pros and cons. That's especially important with "subject-to" real estate, because there can be risks and rewards with this type of property that are different from traditional purchases. Here's what you should be considering, before you decide on this investment strategy.
The Pros of "Subject-To" Real Estate
On the "pro" side of buying "subject-to" real estate is the way you can acquire multiple properties for your portfolio. Additional benefits include:
The Cons of "Subject-To" Real Estate
With any real estate transaction or investment of any kind, there are cons that come along with the pros. When you weigh them carefully, here's what you should be thinking about:
Why Choose This Type of Real Estate Investment?
If you don't have the money or credit to buy investment properties, buying "subject-to" can be a good choice if you understand and mitigate the risks. You may also want to choose this option if you're trying to acquire a lot of properties quickly, and you want to save money over traditional purchasing options. For people who buy "subject-to", there can be big opportunities to buy quality properties they might not be able to afford under typical circumstances.
But it's very important that you're aware of the risks and legalities. Getting an attorney to help you with the first few properties, and to collect and make the mortgage payments on all the properties you buy, can be one of the ways you can make this type of transaction safer and better for you and the seller.
When you stop and think about all the preparations involved in putting your house on the market and avoiding mistakes, it can feel overwhelming! The good news is that you don't have to go it alone.
An experienced real estate agent can provide you with invaluable guidance on everything from effectively staging your home to complying with seller disclosure requirements.
One aspect of selling your house in the shortest amount of time (and for the highest price) is doing everything you can to make a great first impression on prospective buyers. You've probably heard the old expression "Presentation is everything." While that might be a slight overstatement when it comes to selling your house, it is a concept that is well worth keeping in mind. The overall impression prospective buyers take away with them after they've viewed your property will have a powerful impact on whether they decide to include it on their "short list."
Let There Be Light!
Sometimes the simplest changes can produce the biggest results. One example is lighting. If a room is inadequately lit, then you're not going to be showing it to its best advantage. Spaces that are too dimly lit can come across as dreary, shadowy, and uninviting. If you have bedrooms or other living spaces that don't have a ceiling light, for example, it might be worth the expense of having an electrician come in and correct that. Otherwise, homebuyers may find it frustrating and off-putting when they flip a wall switch, and it only turns on a ceiling fan, a floor lamp, or nothing!
Dimmer switches are often an easy and inexpensive solution for rooms that seem either too bright or too dark. Prospective buyers like the feeling that they can adjust the lighting in any room to match their immediate needs and mood.
Letting in as much natural light from the outside is another way to create a bright, cheerful ambiance in your home. Using decorative curtain ties to pull back curtains as far as possible can add a nice finishing touch while allowing as much outside light to shine in as possible.
If you happen to notice that your curtains are wrinkled, faded, tattered, heavy looking, or noticeably dated, you might want to consider replacing them with newer, more cheerful versions. The appearance and age of your curtains can have a lasting effect on the impression house hunters get from your home.
While we're on the topic of windows, keeping them impeccably clean is a goal worth prioritizing. That can be a difficult thing to keep up with if you have young children and pets who are always leaving smudges on glass and mirrors, but the cleanliness of windows is a small but important detail that will be noticed by potential buyers.
Although there are dozens of things to keep in mind when trying to make a great impression on home buyers, your real estate agent will help you identify cost-effective strategies for putting your best foot forward.
When you're motivated to get the most from your sale, it pays to add property value through preparation. Get started today with some of these tips:
Have your local real estate agent evaluate your home. As a professional, they know what sells and what doesn't in your area. They will assist you in determining how to spend your money wisely to get the best return.
Pay for a home inspection. A certified home inspector will point out those areas needing fixing, correction, or removal.
Clear up landscaping messes and debris. Add regionally appropriate and low-maintenance plants and ground cover.
Paint your walls to a neutral but modern color. Gone are the instructions for all-white walls. Stick to gray or taupe tones though, to give a hint of timeless freshness. Remove dated, stained, peeling, or faded wallpaper. Instead of replacing it, finish and paint the area in a neutral palette with an appropriate finish.
Request a home energy audit from your utility company. Most energy companies offer this service for free. Sometimes simply making changes to lighting or adding insulation gives your house a higher energy rating. Efficient homes are generally more attractive to buyers.
If your home has "popcorn-style" texture on the ceiling, consider removing it. Replacing it with smooth plaster or a modernized surface increases your home’s value. Do not DIY this, however, until you make sure that your ceiling texture does not contain asbestos. Up until the late 70s, many textured ceiling preparations used asbestos flakes. If your home is newer than this, you're likely fine handling this on by yourself. An older home, however, requires a licensed professional with experience in asbestos removal and disposal.
While you’re at it, replace old light fixtures. Upgrade them with high-efficiency fixtures and for little expense, bring your home into the LED era. Upgrade exterior lights with automatic options to add a safety factor to your home's exterior.
Replace your roof. When living in storm-prone areas, hail or windstorm may cause damage that you cannot see and affect your roof’s integrity. Get a roof inspection (most roofing contractors do this for free). If your roof is storm damaged, contact your homeowner’s insurance to see about replacing it. In some policies, storm damage replacement has time limitations. If you've experienced heavy hail or windstorms, immediately have your roof evaluated or you may end up paying for repairs yourself. While a new roof may not increase your sale price, a damaged roof will lower it.
Expose your hardwood. When you have wood flooring hiding underneath stained, faded, or worn carpeting, take time to remove the carpeting and expose the hardwood. Refinish the floor if you can do so. Even if you cannot, use some of these quick fixes to make your wood floors appear inviting to homebuyers.
When in doubt, always refer to number one above: call your real estate pro. They’ll help you determine the best options for you to get the most from your home.