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Complete Guide to Selling Your House

Many homeowners want a stress-free sale. They simply want to list their house, quickly find qualified buyers, and then hand over the keys. However, selling a house is not an easy task. There are many moving parts that you can control, and others that you cannot. Some things you can’t control include where the house is which affects how long it will stay on the market and how much you can list it for. If you are looking at selling property in Cabo San Lucas when inventory is high, for example, you will not sell as fast as you want or for as much as you would like. However, there are many factors that are in your control that can help you sell your home quickly and effectively. Here are a few ways in which you can accomplish this goal.

Hire an Experienced Real Estate Agent

It’s easy to look up real agents’ sales history and other information online in today’s technological world. This will help you choose the right person to do business with. Check out the online profiles of real estate agents to see how long they have been in the business, how many transactions they have made, and any certifications they might hold. Keep an eye out for where they market their listings and what practices they use to do so, such as professional photography. 

To save money on the commission, homeowners might decide to sell their house themselves and not hire a real agent. This is called “for sale-by-owner” or FSBO. Real estate commission is usually 5-6% of the home sale price, so thousands of dollars in savings is possible. However, a good real estate agent will be worth that fee because they put in extra work to market your home and negotiate offers. When you go the FSBO route, it will be your job to manage your own home’s preparation, marketing, reviewing offers, and all the details of closing. Real estate fees have dropped to an all-time low so you can’t go wrong with choosing an experienced real estate agent.

Complete guide to selling your house

Set Realistic Goals & Plan Ahead

Selling your home is not an easy feat, especially since the process can take up to four months from beginning to end, if not longer. After you have decided to sell the home and chosen an experienced real estate agent, think about having a pre-sale home inspection carried out a few months before listing the home. This allows you to have a headstart on any repairs that may need to be done in order to get your home sold for a good price. You should also begin to stage the home, clean everything, and declutter about a month before listing so it is ready for home showings. 

Complete guide to selling your house

Pre-Sale Home Inspections

A pre-sale inspection is not mandatory but can be a worthwhile investment. You will get an inspection report that will help you identify structural and mechanical issues before you sell your home. While it can get expensive, its purpose is to alert you to issues in your home that buyers may notice. This will keep you from losing offers later on down the road.

Complete guide to selling your house

Don’t Spend Your Money On Unnecessary Home Improvements

Do not waste money on upgrades to the home, especially if you can’t afford it. If you do not make a profit on updating your kitchen countertops, then there is no point in spending your money to do it. This is where a professional real estate agent can be of great assistance. If you hire an agent who is experienced in your area, they often have a good idea of what your neighbors want and can help plan improvements accordingly. They won’t suggest needless things like a skylight, but they will suggest improvements that will help the sale of your home, such as new paint or carpet. The best return on investment is generally in the kitchen and bathroom, so stick to those areas for upgrades. 

Complete guide to selling your house

Professional Real Estate Photography

Your real estate agent can help you with beautiful photos of your home. They need to be high-quality so they will grab the attention of potential homebuyers and sell your home quickly. Many real estate agents include professional photography in their range of services. If not, research some local photographers who have experience in taking beautiful real estate pictures. Just keep in mind that additional fees may be requested for photography based on the square footage of your home, where it is located, and the time it takes to capture the photos. 

You want to find a real estate photographer that knows how to make rooms look bigger and brighter. They should also be able to pay special attention to the outdoor spaces of the home and how to use lighting correctly. A good real estate photographer is an expert on how to appeal to potential homebuyers. 

Complete guide to selling your house

Stage the Home For Showings

It is recommended that you stage your home before you list. This simply means that you take out excess furniture and personal belongings from your home and arrange the rooms to maximize flow and purpose. A professional stager can help you stand out if you are selling a home that is in a slow market or a luxury property.

Complete guide to selling your house

Price Your Home Correctly

Buyers are not interested in homes that are listed at a higher price than the real estate comps, even in highly competitive markets. It’s important to do it right the first time because underestimating the value of a home can lead to a backlash. Your neighborhood’s comparables can help you price your house right from day one. These real estate comp sheets provide information about properties that have been sold in a particular area. You can see a quick overview of the homes in your area. You can also check out online listings websites to find similar properties in your area. You may be able to get a better idea of the actual sales prices by comparing them to other homes in your area. Remember that multiple price reductions can give buyers the impression that your home is in poor condition.

Complete guide to selling your house

Negotiation Skills are Crucial

Once your home is officially on the market and potential buyers have seen it, the offers should begin coming. Your real estate agent is your best advocate at this time. Buyers will often offer more than the asking price if you are in a market that favors sellers or may you even get multiple bids. On the other hand, if sales in your area are slow and there aren’t many offers, it might be worth being open to negotiation.

When you are offered a deal, you can either accept the offer or provide a counteroffer. Counteroffers are a way to negotiate terms and prices with potential homebuyers. These should always be made in writing and there should be a response in forty-eight hours. If buyers go below your offer, you can throw in a credit on a new carpet, for example, but you should still maintain your original asking price.

You might feel tempted to choose the highest offer if you are lucky enough to receive multiple offers . However, if the buyer relies on lender financing, an appraisal must be done. The deal may fall apart if there is a difference between the appraised value and the purchase price.

Complete guide to selling your house

Be Ready to Pay Some Closing Costs

Both the home seller and homebuyer have closing expenses. The seller pays the realtor the real estate commission. Sellers also need to pay for the government transfer tax, recording fees, and outstanding liens. If the buyer has agreed to any repairs credits, the seller will also pay those. Your real estate agent can provide you with a list of all the costs you will be responsible for at closing. 

Complete guide to selling your house


When you’re ready to sell your home, it can be difficult and stressful. There are many moving parts that need to work together in order for the sale of a house to go smoothly. Call a realtor near you today to begin selling your home quickly and effectively!

Get a New Home with Industry Low Mortgage and Finance Rates

Getting a home mortgage is not as easy as you think. In fact, this is a vital step in the home buying experience, and can literally determine if you are able to close or not. Traditionally, mortgage rates were considered too high for income-sensitive families to afford home ownership.  The process of getting your home mortgage is the #1 pitfall for first time home buyers. Understanding the most critical aspects of successfully closing on a good rate, with minimal disruptions, is a critical part of the home buying process.

Getting the right mortgage rights is even more important than the price of the home in question.

The Best Mortgage Lenders

As is the case with most home buying ventures, you need the right lenders to meet your needs across the board. These should be licensed mortgage lenders who have access to low-mortgage rates and affordable loans through a variety of lending institutions. The latter should also have convenient and flexible repayment terms, while helping you effectively make ends meet.

While there are countless lenders on the market, which ones should you consider for your first home? According to industry experts, there is no one answer to this question – and you may need to shop around to find a good lender with access to cost-affordable home loans and mortgages. Here are some of the home mortgage loans currently on the market that you should consider.

FHA Loans

FHA Loans are some of the most common loans in the mortgage and home financing industry. These loans are governed and mandated by the Federal Housing Administration. These loans are primarily designed to help low-to-middle-income families’ secure timely and affordable mortgages.

FHA loans also help families take advantage of down payment benefits, as well as low closing costs and related expenditures. FHA loans, however, can only be approved if the home in question falls within a certain price range of category. These prices tend to differ – based on the current mortgage rates. Therefore, it is best to consult with an FHA loan specialist or mortgage adviser to understand your options.

Adjustable – Fixed Rate Loans

The loans are designed for homeowners that plan to stay in their homes for a few years. This ensures your mortgage rate stays the same throughout the payment period. Adjustable rate loans (ARMS)also allow short-term home owners to save time and money on payments. However, the rates do change based on industry spikes or market fluctuations. The latter is perfect for homeowners that require steady payments each month.

with industry-low mortgage rates, you need to find the right loan to tap into these savings. Again, it is best to consult with a home mortgage or financial specialist to make a worthwhile and informed decision.

Getting a home mortgage can be a tumultuous process. However, you can ease the task by understanding all your available options. You can also check the Internet to review the current mortgage and financing – refinancing rates. This is truly a great time to invest in a home with industry-low mortgage rates across the industry and country.

Top Real Estate Trends in The Greater Boston Area

Real estate business in the Greater Boston Area, is undoubtedly on the rise. Actually, it is booming more than any other place throughout America.  With Amazon potentially looking at Boston as one of the locations to place their massive secondary home base – we anticipate a rise in demand for Boston and the suburbs of Boston.  The demand for condos, homes, Brownstones and apartments is anticipated to hit its record high in the coming years.

Buying or Selling?

But whether you are keen on selling or purchasing any property in South Boston or one of the many surrounding cities around Boston, there are some important real estate trends that you ought to be conversant with. Understanding these Boston real estate trends is crucial for both sellers and buyers. For sellers, these trends can help them know the perfect time to sell their property so as to get the highest value possible for their properties. For buyers, these trends are vital to helping them know the best time to purchase property, in order to get the best deal at the most affordable price. In addition, with the homes of Boston having some of the highest prices in the nation, we are seeing many people avoid the bidding wars of Boston and look to the surrounding cities such as Hingham MA, Quincy and Cohasset.


Boston Real Estate is on FIRE

Boston Real Estate is on FIRE

Properties within safe neighborhoods are on high demand


Property buyers are not just looking for ordinary property. Instead, they are keen on purchasing properties located within safe neighborhoods since security and safety is paramount to today’s average property buyer. Property developers, therefore, need to ensure their property is within safe neighborhood. On the other hand, property buyers are keen on knowing about crime activity in Boston, as a way of enabling them decide the safest location to purchase property.


Home renovation is crucial


Home buyers in Boston are using renovation as a decision making factor while purchasing homes. In fact, buyers are turning away from homes that are listed for sale yet they aren’t renovated. That means home renovation is no longer a luxury, but a necessity for home sellers. As such, sellers are left with absolutely no choice but to ensure their homes are properly renovated before listing them for sale with Realtors.

Again, home renovation in Boston is increasingly been perceived as the ultimate way of increasing the overall value of a home, meaning that sellers can expect to get more from their home sales in the future by renovating their homes prior to listing them for sale.


Statistics on Buying and Selling Homes Nationwide


Real estate agents have become an integral part of real estate business in Boston MA


Property buyers and sellers alike are increasingly using real estate agents, thus making Boston real estate agents an integral part of real estate business. Real estate agents help buyers locate the property of their choice conveniently, while sellers are listing their properties with popular real estate agents to find ready buyers quickly and conveniently.


Even though real estate business in Boston is expected to boom in the future, it is important for both property buyers to understand the top real estate trends nationwide. This is crucial to enabling them figure out how they can benefit from these trends.

What are the Advantages of Buying a Second Home for Your Family?

buying a second home

Thinking of Buying a Second Home?

Buying a home is a dream for many people – they want to own a property that they can retire in. Buying a second home, however, is not something that many do. A second home comes with many advantages, and so long as you can afford it you should do it.

Here are some of the benefits that you will be able to enjoy:

•    It provides your family with a home away from home. The typically second home buyer is in their 40s or 50s, and by this time their parents have passed on and their children have flown the coop. A second home is a great way to keep family traditions alive – during the holidays everyone can gather there and get a much needed break.

•    A second home is an excellent place to retire. If there is somewhere you have always wanted to live but haven’t been able to do so you should consider buying a home there. Once you retire it becomes easier to transition, and before retirement you have the opportunity to establish roots in the community.

•    Buying a home also has financial advantages – over time property values increase, and many people use second homes to finance their children’s university education. If you buy a house and rent if you can also make money every month – just make sure that it is empty during the holidays so that your family can still gather there.

•    Buying a second home is a great way to increase your financial portfolio. For many people, their home is the most important asset that they have. If you buy a second home you will increase the value of your real estate portfolio and give you financial stability.

•    Buying a home in an exotic location is a good way to learn about the way of life of people from another part of the world.  You may find that many of the exotic locations end up being the more affordable places to live also.  Many people, for example, buy a home in South American countries because it gives them the chance to enjoy the rich culture of the people and learn the language.

These are not the only benefits of buying a second home – there are significant tax advantages as well.

Financial Befifits on Buying a Second Home

Tips on buying a second home

The biggest obstacle to buying a second home is that it is harder to get a mortgage – you will need a bigger down payment, a good credit score and the lender will charge higher interest rates. You should not let these things stop you – people buy second homes all the time and so long as you are working with the right real estate agent they can help you buy your second home. A second home will also require maintenance, so don’t foregt to factor that in as a long term cost.

Selling a home is a daunting task but it can be exciting and rewarding if you get certain things right.  Even if you are in a super competitive real estate market, where the homes go under contract the moment they get listed and there are only 7 homes for sale – there are still major downfalls to not getting everything right.

Here are the tips for selling your home fast;

Curb appeal

First impressions are important and that is what curb appeal helps you with. Ensure that the exterior of your home is as attractive as possible. Wash the walkways and siding with a power hose, mow the lawns, plant fresh grass and flowers, wash the windows, and stain or repaint the porch floor. You can also repaint the front door if it looks outdated.  Investments into the curb appeal will insure that the first look of your home, by a potential buyer, sees a well kept, property.

Renovate the kitchen

kitchen renovations help sell your home

A kitchen renovation can help sell your home

A kitchen is an important part of any house. It can either make or break a sale. You want to ensure that it appeals to the buyers.  A kitchen remodel can be one of the most cost effective home improvements when selling your home.  Once recent study had shown up to a 182 percent return on investment from a kitchen remodel.  The most crucial renovations are to replace the counter-tops, repair the plumbing system, and buy new faucets and cabinet doors.

Go easy on the renovations

Do not over spend when doing the renovations because you might not recover the money from the sale.  Over upgrading can potentially loose you money.  Only do the renovations that are extremely necessary such as repairing leaking pipes, repainting the walls, buying new curtains, cleaning the house thoroughly among other things.


Having a home that is full of clutter can quickly remove your house from the homes a buyer wants to write an offer on.  A cluttered home seems smaller and not as well maintained.  Remove as much of your belonging from the house as possible. This is crucial because it will create the illusion of space. Remove half the clothes in your closet and put away your children’s toys.

Price the house correctly

How pricing affects your home salePricing plays a key role in ensuring a fast sale of a house.  Most homes that get sold, sell within the first 45 days after they get listed.  If your home has not sold within the first 60 days, you have a good chance of your listing expiring without a sale.  Many people attempt to overprice a home at listing, with the intent of reducing the price later.  This is terrible strategy as most active homebuyers – are desperately seeking out the newest listings. A home gets the most buyer attention the first 2 weeks it is listed.  It is critical that your home is NOT overpriced during this critical time.

Research around and find out the market value of houses that are similar to yours and cut of about 15% when pricing your house. This strategy will make buyers to come running and they will end up biding for your home and eventually you will sell it at a higher price than you could have imagined. All in all you should avoid over pricing the house because it might end up stalling in the market which could send a wrong message to buyers because they will start to think that there is something wrong with it.

Find a good agent

Agents are helpful especially if you are selling a house for the first time. Find a real estate agent who is technology savvy and will have the mind to scour the internet and keep track of the MLS or the multiple listing service and the market value of houses. A Realtor will come in handy also when it comes to pricing the house because they have a lot of experience in the industry.

Money matters

Find out the correct value of your house on your own. You can go the extra mile and get a pre-listing appraisal. There are several sites online where you can get that information. Also find out how much it will cost you to sell the house.

Keeping Energy Costs Down

Keeping energy costs down

With the recent winter storms hitting the US, many states not used to living in frigid temperatures are dealing with extended periods of extreme cold weather.  Unlike residents of the Northern cities such as Boston, many people in the south are scrambling to keep warm.  With energy cost soaring, and winter blowing in on North Carolina and even the most southern states, homeowners are looking for ways to save on their heating and cooling bills. 

Here are some tips that will help you to save money:


What You Can Do To Keep Your Energy Costs Down Today

What You Can Do To Keep Your Energy Costs Down This Week

Making your home energy efficient increases its value

Making your home energy efficient increases its value

What You Can Do To Keep Your Energy Costs Down This Month


What You Can Do To Keep Your Energy Costs Down This Year


Although most real estate sales take place in the warmer months, people are still purchasing homes in the Winter.  If your home is on the market during the winter months, its important that all of your systems be up to par and functioning well.  If you are selling your home – it is best practices AS THE SELLER – to get a home inspection BEFORE your home is put on the market

Weather is a funny thing and you never really know what Mother Nature is going to do. As a homeowner, you want to be sure that you are prepared for anything from a hot summer sun to an unexpected snow storm.

3 More Ways to Keep Your Winter Energy Costs Down

Many of these tips were taken from the Consumer Guide to Home Energy Savings. For additional information on home energy conservation/efficiency measures, visit the Consumer Energy Center and the Home Energy Saver Answer Desk