Selling Your House

Seven Easy Ways to Prepare for an Open House

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As the busy selling season winds down, it’s important that real estate agents and home sellers are taking advantage of every opportunity to sell properties before winter – including open houses. More than cookies and cleaning – there are several things you can do to ensure that your house presents at its best.

Organize Everything – Storage space is a vital selling point for any property. Cluttered closets and cabinets make it appear that the home doesn’t have enough storage – even if there is ample. Combat this misconception by making sure everything is well organized. You’re guaranteed that the buyer is going to be inspecting every nook and cranny.

Make Small Repairs – Potential buyers won’t overlook anything, from scuffed paint to leaky faucets you’ll want to make sure everything is in tip-top shape before holding an open house. Ideally, you would start this process one month out and have an agent guide you in the most important changes.

Update Your Interior – When you home is staged with nice décor and you’ve made simple updates, buyers will more easily be able to visualize themselves in your home. It’s often inexpensive to give your home a more modern look.  If you are in the process of moving out, a few strategically placed pieces of furniture can do wonders.

Door Hangers – Old school door hangers tend to work. Neighbors are likely interested in the listing – so let them know about it. Instead of lamenting on the fact that the only traffic is ‘nosy neighbors’ embrace the fact that neighbors can help sell a home. Share the home with adjoining neighborhoods as well. Lots of people want their friends and family to live nearby.

Declutter – Experts recommend eliminating up to half of your home’s clutter, either by renting a storage unit or a portable pod. You might even have a friend or family member who would help out with storing items. Keep aesthetics minimal and see what you can do to depersonalize the house. Buyers want to see themselves living there – not you.

Be Invisible – If possible, try to avoid being around the house. If the owner is absent, buyers will feel more comfortable asking questions to the realtor and discussing the benefits and drawbacks of the home.

Collect Contact Information – Make it easy for visitors to sign into the open house. This is a helpful safety measure and it also allows you to grow your database of interested buyers. Registrations can be done simply with a piece of paper and a clipboard or an iPad.

This just skims the top of the list of things to do before an open house. If you are looking to sell your house and need expert advice, contact us. We’re happy to help.

Kitchen Remodeling a Lucrative Selling Point for Sellers

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For many home buyers, the kitchen is one of the most important deciding factors in whether or not to purchase a home. If you’re thinking of selling in the near future, doing some kitchen remodeling is a must.

Use the following tips to help you figure out how to spruce up your kitchen:

  • Invest in high-quality countertops. A lot of buyers like granite countertops, but you don’t have to get those if they’re not within your budget. Consider other materials that are just as appealing, such as quartz. Ideally, your countertops should be durable and easy to maintain.
  • Open up your kitchen. Having an open kitchen with a free flow to it is one of the best changes to make. Many buyers appreciate being able to cook and chat with others at the same time. This can be a costly project, though, depending on your current layout, so make sure you can afford it.
  • Update your cabinets. Paint your cabinets white, especially if yours are dark wood cabinets. This is an easy fix that goes a long way toward appealing to buyers.

Want additional help preparing your home for sellingCall United Real Estate, and stop by our Facebook page.

Home Staging Boosts Higher Prices and Quicker Sales

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As a seller, you’re probably hoping to get as much money as you can for your home and sell it quickly. You can boost your chances of doing this by staging your home.

Here are a few things you should know about home staging for prospective buyers:

  • Staging your home means making it look as appealing as possible to buyers. In order to do this, you might have to paint the walls, rearrange the furniture, keep personal items to a minimum and invest in more neutral decor items that the majority of buyers will like.
  • You should expect to spend some money on staging your home, but don’t go overboard. If you stay within your budget, you’ll make that money back in the form of a higher selling price. Your real estate agent can assist you with getting your home ready for staging at a cost-effective price.
  • You can test whether staging is worth it for you by having buyers look at your home before preparing it for staging. If you’re not getting high enough offers, then it’s time to give staging a try.

Need help selling your home? Contact United Real Estate and visit us on Facebook.

Prepping Your Home For Potential Buyers: Tips for Sellers

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Spring is typically the busiest time of year for home sellers. If you’ll be putting your home on the market this season, you’ll have to make sure it’s in ideal shape in order to attract buyers and hold their interest.

Improving curb appeal when selling a home is one of the most important steps to take. You can do this by power washing your home’s exterior, doing some landscaping and fixing up your porch or entryway. In addition to working on curb appeal, you should also do the following to prepare for buyers:

  • Give your home a good cleaning. Make your home as spotless as possible to impress buyers. Plan on dusting, scrubbing and steam cleaning carpets, as well as clearing out piles of clutter.
  • Put personal items away. Store your collections, and replace personal photos with some simple artwork. Keeping your home looking too personal makes it tougher for buyers to picture themselves living there.
  • Schedule an inspection. Have a home inspection done before putting your home on the market. Taking this step can ease buyers’ fears about buying a home with undisclosed problems.

Need help selling your homeContact United Real Estate, and stop by our Facebook page.

Thinking of Listing Your House? Selling in the Spring 2014

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Spring tends to be the busiest time of year for sellers. If you’re debating whether or not to put your home on the market, there are some factors to consider.

Here are a few reasons for selling in spring 2014:

  • Beating the competition. Selling earlier in the year means you should have an easier time selling and getting more money for your home.
  • Upsizing or downsizing. Save yourself unnecessary stress by finding the right size home, whether you need a bigger family home or a smaller one.
  • Avoiding maintenance issues. If you’re in an older home, you can expect to shell out considerable money for repairs. If you can’t afford this, consider moving to a newer home.

These are a few reasons for staying put:

  • Boosting your home’s value. If you have enough for repairs, consider fixing up your home to increase its value.
  • Being in a good spot. If you’re happy with where your home is, you might want to think twice about selling now.
  • Getting higher equity. You’re better off not selling if your home’s equity will be rising.

Leaning toward selling your homeCall United Real Estate for help, and follow our Facebook page.

Sure Sale: Highest ROI Projects for Your Home

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Giving your home some upgrades is a necessary part of making sure it’s ready for the market. When deciding which projects to do, you should focus on which ones will give you a high return on investment (ROI). This will help you recoup a significant amount of the cost of each project.

These are a couple of the highest ROI projects for your home:

  • Getting a new front door. Replacing your current entry door and jams with one that’s made of 20-gauge steel is a moderately priced project with a very high ROI. You’ll spend a little over $1,000, but you’ll recoup about 96 percent of that cost.
  • Getting new siding. This will cost you more upfront, but you’ll get a lot of the money back. Replacing your siding with fiber-cement siding that’s factory primed and painted will cost more than $13,000, but you’ll get about 87 percent of the cost back.

What should you avoid? The project with the lowest ROI is home office remodeling. This costs about $28,000, and you’ll only get about 48 percent of that back.

Ready to start the selling process? Contact United Real Estate, and follow us on Facebook.

Maintain Your Home: Start Spring Cleaning Now

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Making plans to put your home up for sale this spring or summer? Then it’s time to start working on making it as clean as possible for potential buyers.

Here are some easy cleaning tips and home upgrades you can do to get your home ready:

  • Bathrooms: Vacuum and wipe down the ceiling and walls to get rid of grime. Wipe down the mirrors and the insides of windows. Use a strong cleaner on the toilet, shower walls, tub, sink and floor, then it soak for about 15 minutes before rinsing it off.
  • Bedrooms: Wipe down the walls and ceilings, then dust off the tops of dressers and other surfaces. Remove the covers from beds, and open the windows for a few hours to air the rooms out. Clean the windows, steam clean the carpets and wash all linens.
  • Kitchen: Give the fridge and freezer a thorough cleaning, then remove grease from all cooking appliances. Wipe down the cabinets and counters, then mop the floor.
  • Other rooms: Wipe down all walls and ceilings. Clean your upholstery, dust electronics and clean the windows.

Need more tips on selling your home? Visit United Real Estate, and follow us on Facebook.

Five Ways to Show Your Home a Little Love

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Whether you’re getting your home ready for the market or planning on fixing up your new home, you don’t have to break the bank. There are plenty of simple and cost-effective ways to do home upgrades.

Here are five easy and inexpensive ideas for making some changes to your home:

  • Install stair brackets. Make the outside of your staircase visually appealing by adding wood brackets. All you need are nails and an adhesive.
  • Put up crown molding. Get some Trimroc molding, a handsaw and joint compound to install molding that instantly boosts your home’s appeal.
  • Refinish your cabinets. With some cleaner, sandpaper, paint and a paintbrush, you can give your kitchen cabinets a fresh new look. This works best if your cabinets are in good shape already.
  • Paint the floor. Instead of investing in a new floor, grab some floor paint and give your floor a whole new look. This is a much less expensive and time-consuming option.
  • Give your bathroom fresh caulk. Update the caulk around your tub and sink for better protection against moisture.

Ready to start the buying or selling process? Visit United Real Estate, and stop by our Facebook page.

Modernizing Your Home: Top Five Paint Colors for 2014

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Looking for just the right color or colors to spruce up your home before putting it on the market? There are several great hues to choose from if you’re modernizing your home for sale.

These are some of the hottest colors of 2014 to consider:

  • Emerald: This rich shade of green adds a vibrant yet tasteful touch of color to any room. It’s also a calming and elegant color, making it a great one to use on your walls.
  • Peacock: This shade of blue is a cheerful color that’s slightly darker than teal. You can use it with neutral shades, like gray or white, to brighten up a room.
  • French gray: This warm shade of gray is perfect for giving rooms a cozy feel without having to go too dark. It works well in bedrooms.
  • Deep purple: This shade looks good on accent walls, where it adds an eye-catching contrast to lighter colors or neutrals.
  • Gold: Soft shades of gold are becoming more popular on the exterior of homes. They make any house look brighter without looking too colorful.

Getting ready to start the selling process? Visit United Real Estate to find an agent, and stop by our Facebook page.

Selling 101: Maximizing Small Spaces With Big Colors

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The bathroom is one of the biggest selling points in a home. If yours is a smaller one, it’s important to make it seem as roomy as possible. This will help you attract buyers and get a good price for your home.

Maximizing small spaces can be done with simple changes versus a total renovation. One of the most effective and easiest ways to make your bathroom look larger is by redoing it in a bold color. Choose something like a striking shade of red or a vivid blue tone to focus on. Paint the walls that color, then add accessories, such as hand towels and a toothbrush holder, in the same tone or in complementing colors. If your bathroom has a window, put up curtains that match as well. When choosing a big color, try out a sample of it on your wall first to see if you like it. If not, you can cover it up and try a different color.

Ready to start the selling process? Visit United Real Estate to find a local office, and stop by our Facebook page for more advice and tips on selling a home.