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Posted by Joyce Torelli on 12/6/2017

Any pet owner will tell you that their pets are a part of the family. They bring joy to new families getting their first dog, and companionship to people who would otherwise live alone. However, they also bring the pet odors associated with having them around the house.

Since we spend so much time in our own homes, we oftentimes donít even notice pet odors. So, even if you think your home is free of odors, itís a good idea to get an unbiased opinion of the various odors of your home so that you can address them if necessary.

In this article, weíre going to teach you how to identify and neutralize those pet odors before the open house or first home showing. That way you can make the best impression on potential sellers and leave them feeling like your home has been well-maintained.

Identifying pet odors in your home

Whether youíve got a dog, cat, rabbit, or hamster, odds are your little friend puts off some amount of odor. To discover where, if any, odors can be found, invite a friend over to your home who isnít familiar with the smells and ask them their honest opinions about the various rooms in your home. This will give you a good idea of where you need to focus your efforts.

Important areas to clean

First thingís first: the fabrics, surfaces, furniture, and carpet in your home in your home hold onto odor the most. Renting or buying a carpet cleaner, mopping the hard surfaces, and washing or refreshing curtains is a great place to start.

Many steam cleaners can be used on various surfaces, making them a good solution to get the most value out of your cleaning budget.

Donít forget the carpet pad

If your pets have ever had ďaccidentsĒ on your carpets, itís vital to remember that their mess likely soaked through the carpet onto the carpet pad. While it may seem like a lot of effort to pull up the carpet just to clean the pad, it may be your only option in severe cases of pet odors.  

Painting

Repainting is a guaranteed way to remove any lingering odors in your home. Try to time your painting so that the room has the chance to air out and the smell of fresh paint isnít overpowering.

Repainting is also the perfect opportunity to brighten up the rooms of your home, making them feel more spacious. Sticking to neutral, proven colors will give you the most bang for your buck.

Let some fresh air in

Before showing your home, open up the doors and windows and doors to closets and basements and let a draft run through the house. This can eliminate any musty smells that have accumulated in the lesser used parts of your home, as well as help mitigate the effect of pet odor.

Last minute additions

The day of showing your home, use a high-quality scented candle or two in places that your pets frequent. You donít want it to be obvious that youíre trying to mask any bad odors, so donít use anything overpowering. Rather, opt for a pleasant-to-neutral fragrance that isnít too noticeable.




Tags: selling your home   dogs   cats   pet odor  
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Posted by Joyce Torelli on 11/15/2017

If this is your first time selling a home, you might not be familiar with the costs associated with selling. Lenders and agents help to make this process as simple as possible for both the buyer and seller. However, itís still a good idea to know what to expect to pay for selling your home, as it seems counter-intuitive that you would have to pay to sell something.

Due to the consolidation of costs by lenders, it can be easy to glaze over the list of closing expenses without fully knowing what they mean. But since many fees can be negotiated, it pays to learn the ins and outs of closing costs.

Whether youíre selling your home soon or just want to brush up on real estate processes, this article will give you a better understanding of closing costs from the perspective of a seller.

Closing costs

Buyers typically pay the majority of the closing costs associated with purchasing a home. However, there are some closing costs that buyers are at least partially responsible for.

Notary fees, expenses from escrow, and title insurance are all likely costs youíll have to dish out before closing.

Agent fees

Real estate agents typically earn a commission on selling a house. The work they put in saves you in several ways. First, you donít have to pay for all of the marketing expenses associated with selling a home. This includes photography, sign-making, and online listings.

Agents can save you in other ways, as well. Theyíll help you price your home effectively, negotiate prices, and take care of the time-intensive process of showing your house. You wonít want to have to take time off from work to try to DIY these steps.

Taxes

Since youíve likely owned your home for a while now, youíre familiar with paying property taxes. If you pay taxes yearly and are moving toward the end of your pay cycle, youíll have to pay a prorated rate for the amount of time youíve lived in the home that year.

The burden is also yours for any remaining HOA fees and state transfer taxes. Not every state charges transfer taxes so be sure to check the cost for your state.

Moving costs

Moving can be an expensive endeavor. Aside from hiring movers, renting vans, or buying boxes, there are a number of expenses we donít often think of when preparing to move.

First, it will take you a while to get your new home set up. That means you should be prepared to eat out for a while until you get settled.

On top of that, thereís also the matter of having to take days off from work, which can be costly in its own right.

Those are some of the most common expenses a buyer has to worry about during closing. Your real estate agent will be able to give you a comprehensive rundown of costs and help you find the best agreement.





Posted by Joyce Torelli on 6/28/2017

Millennials are often a topic of discussion in everything from jobs to cars to real estate. They are the generation who is changing the way we think about so many things. So, when it comes to selling your home to younger buyers, thereís certain things you may want to consider to raise the appeal of your home. Hereís what Millennials are looking for and what you can do to entice them in the home buying process: Young People Want Something Move-In Ready Millennials are young professionals who donít want to make the time for home improvement projects. These buyers are typically looking for something thatís known as ďturnkeyĒ or move-in ready. Other groups of Millennials are more creative and see a vision in the home they buy, investing in the right property over time. What Sellers Can Do: The biggest thing you as a seller can do is be sure that the home displays all of its potential in each area. Even if your home isnít move-in ready be sure that potential buyers understand what needs improving. Updated Kitchens And Baths Are A Must... Maybe Most home buyers desire a home with brand new kitchen and bath fixtures. Younger buyers have limited budgets and updates to both the kitchen and the bathroom are among the most expensive renovations to complete. On the sellerís side of things, however, these updates may not be within the budget either. It may not add enough value to the home in order to make updates worth it. Also, even with updates, the style of a kitchen or bathroom may not gel with the desired style of the buyer. What Sellers Can Do: Update the big things in the kitchen and bathroom where needed. The purple tile in the bathroom may appear ugly to you, but a buyer could find some great potential in it. Just be sure the kitchen and bath appear clean and have the basics such as storage areas in them. Big Open Kitchen The younger crowd likes bigger kitchens for entertaining and cooking elaborate meals. Millennials also like a lot of storage to keep things organized, simple and neat. They are the generation known to be ďminimalists,Ē and their preferred style holds true to this. What Sellers Can Do: Sellers should at the minimum be sure that there is adequate storage available in the kitchen. When staging the home, take any unnecessary furniture pieces out, so that they donít deter from the size the kitchen appears. Staging Your Home Overall, one of the most important things that sellers can do to appeal to young buyers is to stage the home well. While itís often up to the buyer to create their own vision, having the home staged helps to ignite the creativity in the mind of the buyer. By using some of the above tips, you can help to make your home appeal to a younger demographic who are looking for very specific things in a home. Even if you donít think your home can meet these expectations, youíll be surprised what a little creativity can do!





Posted by Joyce Torelli on 5/17/2017

Selling a home may seem impossible at times, especially if you enter a negotiation with a homebuyer. And if you're not careful, you might even lose your cool during a negotiation Ė something that could put a potential deal with a homebuyer in jeopardy.

Don't let stress get the best of you during a home selling negotiation. Instead, use the following tips to avoid stress as you start negotiations with a homebuyer:

1. Understand the Housing Market

Your home has its pros and cons, and understanding what sets your house apart from others ensures that you can generate plenty of interest in your property when it reaches the real estate market. Meanwhile, assessing the housing market may help you determine whether to accept, decline or counter a homebuyer's offer on your residence as well.

Evaluate the real estate market closely. Take a look at the prices of comparable houses in your area to better understand how your home stacks up against similar properties.

Housing market data can help you make an informed decision about a homebuyer's offer. For example, if a homebuyer submits a competitive offer that meets or exceeds your expectations based on real estate market data, you can accept the proposal and avoid stressful negotiations. Or, if a homebuyer submits a proposal that falls below your expectations based on housing market data, you can politely decline the offer.

2. Maintain a Positive Outlook

There is no need to feel frustrated or mad if a homebuyer submits a "lowball" proposal on your house. Conversely, try to maintain a positive outlook throughout home selling negotiations, and you can avoid the risk of letting stress get the best of you.

Remember, stress can make a difficult negotiation even more challenging. But those who understand how to handle stress can boost their chances of maintaining a positive outlook and getting the best results possible from a home selling negotiation.

If you feel anxious at any point in a negotiation, feel free to take a break. Even spending a few minutes performing deep breathing exercises can help you feel calm, cool and collected. Plus, after you complete a stress-relieving activity, you may be better equipped to maintain a positive outlook throughout the remainder of a home selling negotiation.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

Real estate agents are available nationwide and understand how to handle tough home selling negotiations. Therefore, employing an experienced real estate agent may make it easy for you to avoid stress throughout the entire home selling journey.

Your real estate agent will negotiate on your behalf and work directly with a homebuyer. This real estate professional also will keep you informed about home selling negotiations and offer tips and suggestions to ensure you can get the best price for your house.

Ultimately, hiring a real estate agent is a must for home sellers who want to avoid stressful negotiations. With a real estate agent at your side, you should have no trouble accelerating negotiations with a homebuyer and optimizing the value of your residence.




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Posted by Joyce Torelli on 2/15/2017

After you accept an offer on your house, what happens next? Ultimately, there are several steps that will need to be completed to finalize a home sale, including:

1. Completing a Home Inspection

A home inspection may be completed only a few days after you accept a homebuyer's offer. This evaluation enables a homebuyer to conduct a thorough examination of all aspects of your home, and if necessary, rescind or renegotiate a proposal.

For home sellers, it is paramount to maintain a direct, upfront approach with homebuyers. If you are honest with homebuyers from the get-go, you may be able to avoid problems when it comes time to complete a home inspection.

With an experienced real estate agent at your disposal, you should have no trouble establishing realistic expectations for your home. Plus, your real estate agent will offer recommendations for home repairs and upgrades, ensuring that you can complete the necessary home improvement tasks before you add your residence to the real estate market.

2. Performing Home Repairs and Upgrades

If a homebuyer discovers major problems with your house during a home inspection, he or she may request home repairs or upgrades. In this scenario, you may be required to perform various home improvement tasks to finalize an agreement.

Home improvement tasks can be expensive and time-consuming, but they sometimes are necessary to ensure that you can reach the finish line of the home selling process. If you ever have concerns or questions about home repairs and upgrades, your real estate agent should be able to respond to your queries at any time.

Furthermore, if you feel like a homebuyer's home repair and upgrade requests are unwarranted, you can always decline these requests. If you choose this option, however, the homebuyer could rescind his or her offer on your home, and you may need to restart the home selling process from stage one.

On the other hand, you can always try to negotiate with a homebuyer. For example, if you offer to lower the price of your house after an inspection, you may be able to speed up the home selling cycle and avoid making a significant time investment to perform property repairs and upgrades.

3. Packing Up Your Belongings

After a homebuyer finishes an inspection and agrees to purchase your home in its current condition, you'll be able to set up a closing date. You'll also need to consider where you'll go next and plan accordingly.

Packing up your belongings is essential, and you may want to put various items in storage if you plan to live in temporary housing in the foreseeable future. In addition, you'll want to set up plans to get all of your belongings out of your residence before the closing date to ensure that the homebuyer can move into the house on schedule.

Selling a home may seem tricky, especially for those who are uncertain about how to navigate the home selling process. Luckily, your real estate agent is happy to support you in any way possible. As a result, you can work with your real estate agent and guarantee that the home selling process is completed quickly and effortlessly.




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