Warm Up -- Add Value --- Get Money

Save some big bucks on your heating bill and get $300 credit from the federal government if you install a wood burning fireplace insert by the end of 2011. Read all about it here.

You may not be ready to sell now, but when you do --- it's a good idea to have a leg up on your competition. Most people prefer to have an alternative heat source. Many of us found that out over the weekend during the "Halloween Snow Storm".

Pretty On The Outside

First impressions are important. It's mid-summer and some people are a little less energetic about pulling weeds, mowing the grass, tending to the garden, etc ...

It's simple: deferred maintenance with the landscaping of a home translates to potential buyers second guessing the amount of care given to important components such as the furnace, the roof, and more.

Hire a professional if you aren't up to the task. The market is different throughout the country, but one thing that is most likely universal: The homes that are maintained well outsell similar homes that are not maintained well.

One of your neighbor's lawns outshining yours? Compliment them and ask for the name of their landscaper. They do it themselves? See if they'll help. You'll be surprised at how involved a neighbor will get into helping you sell your home. After all, they have a vested interest in that too.


Staging Your Home

With all of the Real Estate shows on TV, many people are aware of the home staging concept. Putting that concept into action is easier for some people than others.

Many people confuse cleaning with staging. Your home is supposed to be clean. Just like a roof that doesn't leak isn't so much a selling point as it is a presumed feature ---- having a dust free, mess free home is expected.

Generally speaking, less is better. If it costs you $50 to $100 a month for two months of storage --- but you get thousands of more $$'s for your home and/or it sells quicker, that's worth it, right?

I can help my clients with general home staging advice, but if it makes sense I will have my Accredited Staging Professional view the home. Give me a call or email for details.


Preparing To Sell

I'm often asked what upgrades should be done to a home, prior to selling. My answer is always different depending on the situation of the Seller. I'll address some simple ideas --- but first consider this:

Maintain and improve your home each quarter for the duration of your ownership. Do something positive to your home every season. You don't have to spend a fortune. Paint, landscape, shutters, sink, etc ....

It'll be much easier tidying up your home when you decide to sell than it would be to paint every room, renovate the kitchen, put down new carpet, etc ....

Besides, you will have been able to enjoy the positive changes made to your home. The fact is, you probably won't recoup the amount of money put into most upgrades --- so why not get some life out of them before you move on?

For starters, here are two simple suggestions to do this winter:

  • Replace your front door: Don't go cheap, go for quality. You'll see it every day and when you go to sell it's the first and last thing Buyers will see. Before you sell, spruce it up with a good cleaning or paint/stain. This is one item where you may see a positive return on value.

  • Garage Door: It looks pretty shabby doesn't it? Check out some of the new styles that will complement the character of your home.

Always ask a local Realtor you trust what they think about any upgrades. Call or email me ---- I enjoy helping people make positive changes.