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Top 5 Features That Homebuyers Are Looking for

The housing market has been busy lately, and if you’re going to sell a home, you might be interested in what homebuyers today are looking for. Most people want a house that’s priced reasonably, but they also want a few key features. If you’re looking to better understand what goes on inside the minds of homebuyers, these tips are for you.

Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors are one of the features in a home that never goes out of style. Hardwood floor cleaning is easy and they only need major maintenance once every few years. You’ll also love that they look beautiful, and they’ll last longer than many other materials when they’re cared for properly. 

Ceiling Fans

It’s such a simple feature that it’s easy to undervalue, but a lot of homebuyers like updated ceiling fans. The reason is that a lot of people like to be able to save money on their energy costs, and you can save a ton both in the winter and summer by using your ceiling fans. They can push warm air down into the room in the winter and create a cooling breeze in the summer.

Energy-Efficient Appliances and Windows

If you already have updated appliances that are energy-efficient, you’re going to be glad that you made the investments. Homebuyers love seeing ways to save on energy costs. Plus, everyone loves having newer windows and appliances because it gives them peace of mind knowing that the appliances and windows won’t need to be replaced for many years.

Patio

Especially if the house is a little short on living space, a patio is a great way to make the house feel larger. If you have some extra space in the backyard but the area doesn’t feel inviting, getting some patio furniture, outdoor screens, a pergola, and other accessories can open up the home. If you don’t yet have a concrete patio or a deck, you can easily get some pavers to lay down and be done with the project after about a day or two. Add some potted plants if you want some greenery that’s very simple to maintain and change out when you want.

Walk-In Pantry

Most people feel like they never have enough storage space in their kitchens, but a walk-in pantry is a great place to keep your dry goods and cleaning supplies. If you have a walk-in pantry, highlight it in the description of the house if you’re selling it soon.

Whenever you’re looking for a way to please homebuyers, make sure that you understand some of the things that they’re most interested in. You might not be able to add all of the features, but there are some that are very simple and relatively inexpensive to add to your home.

Living in a Neighborhood With a Homeowner’s Association: What to Expect

Home Owner Association

 

So you just purchased a new home in a beautiful new neighborhood. This can be one of the most exciting times in your life. There’s only one thing: your new community has a Homeowner’s Association. What can you expect from your new HOA? What are some of the pros and cons? Let’s break it down.

No More Lawncare

Most HOAs provide lawn care services for each home in the neighborhood. That means you no longer will need to break out the weed whacker, lawnmower, or hedge trimmers anymore.

Many HOAs will allow you to customize certain parts of your landscaping like the patio, garden layout, and so on. They might also provide exterior cleaning services as part of the agreement.

You Need to Pay Some Fees

Pretty much every Homeowner’s Association will require residents to pay recurring fees for the services provided by the organization. These are usually monthly payments and can range anywhere from a few hundred to nearly a thousand dollars.

While these prices can be pretty daunting, the HOA fees will go directly to increasing the overall value of the community and the homes inside it.

Not Much Creative Freedom

The main con associated with HOAs is that they restrict residents from changing the appearance of their homes to a certain degree. This could mean only allowing certain plants and trees, restorations, and colors of paint to be used.

If you are looking to have a very unique type of home, especially on the outside, you may want to look for a new neighborhood.

The Community is Close-Knit

One of the best parts of having an HOA is the true sense of community it can bring to the neighborhood. The organization helps get residents involved in benefitting each other and gets everyone on the same page.

Many HOAs will plan events and activities for residents as well. This can mean you will attend more barbecues, pool parties, and game nights in your new neighborhood than you expected.

Money generated by the HOA is also usually invested back into the neighborhood itself. This can lead to things like recreation centers being built and local parks being kept in great shape.

All of these factors lead to the residents of these communities being very tight-knit. Sometimes it may feel like people are in your business a little too much, but most of the time it is because they truly care about their neighborhoods and the quality of their homes.

If the pros of living in an area with an HOA outweigh the cons, get ready to enjoy your new home!

5 Tips to Get Your Vacation Rental Property Ready for Summer

Summer is just around the corner, and if you have a vacation rental property, then you have that much more to look forward to. However, before you gather up the family and hit the road, there are a few things you should ensure are taken care of before arriving at your rental. The following includes five tips to keep in mind in order to get your vacation rental property ready for the summer.

  1. Deep Clean Your Vacation Rental Property

Even if precautions were taken before you left the rental property last summer, the fact is that it’s been sitting there for months. Small pests and other critters may have entered the home at some point, and thus the first tip on this list is to ensure that a deep cleaning occurs before anyone arrives. This can be done by either yourself or through a professional cleaning service. The best carpet cleaners recommend that you clean your carpets twice a year. Learn more at https://true-clean.com/

  1. Replace Your Linens

As stated above, having a home sit alone for many months can lead to issues such as pests crawling on your furniture, linens, and so on. That is why it is recommended to replace your linens before the family arrives. Even if pests are not present, they could have deteriorated due to a lack of airflow as most properties won’t have their A/C units on when nobody is within the home.

  1. Take a Walkthrough of the Property

If you have not been to the property in months, it is important to take a walkthrough of the property. This is especially important if you are renting the property and thus need documented proof that certain problems existed before your arrival. After all, the last thing you want is a bill for damages that were already there at the beginning of your stay.

  1. Replace/Repair Outdoor Furniture

Half of the fun you will have this summer will involve late nights with the family on your porch. That is why you want to make sure that your outdoor furniture is in good condition and can last you throughout the summer. Fortunately, this can be easily accomplished by doing some DIY work, such as replacing old seating pads or giving your furniture a fresh coat of paint.

  1. Go Green!

One of the most common challenges of a vacation property during the summer is that it can use a lot of energy. Everything from lighting to the use of your air conditioner can really push up those energy bills. Going green with products such as longer-lasting lightbulbs and temperature-controlled A/C units can greatly reduce the energy being used throughout your stay.

As you can see from the information above, there are several things you can do to get your vacation rental property ready for the summer. Simply go one by one and begin implementing into your own property.

5 Signs You Need Help With Curb Appeal

Curb appeal is a term that is used to describe how attractive the property is. You should take the time to enhance your curb appeal. There are several signs that indicate you need to boost your curb appeal.

Illustration of a messy home exterior vs a tidy home exterior

You Don’t Like Spending Time Outside

You may not always want to go outside. However, if you never like going outside, then it could be a sign that you just don’t like the way that your yard looks. Lawn care professionals can make your yard look a lot better so that you will be able to enjoy spending time outdoors.

 

There Are Many Overhanging Tree Branches

Overhanging tree branches are not only unattractive, but they can also be a danger. The trees can break off and injure someone. They can also hide the most attractive parts of your house. That is why it is a good idea for you to cut down the overhanging tree branches.

 

Your Realtor Has Made Suggestions

Your realtor’s goal is to help you get your home off the market as soon as possible. They will pay attention to how attractive your property is. If they make suggestions that will help improve your yard, then you will need to take those things into consideration. They want to ensure that a potential buyer will be able to see themselves living in the home.

 

You Like Your Neighbors Garden, But You Don’t Like Your Own Garden

If you find yourself being envious of your neighbor’s garden, then it is time for you to fix up your own. It doesn’t take a lot for you to improve your garden. You can hire a professional to help clean up your garden. You can also improve your own garden by taking good care of the soil.

Additionally, you can add fragrance to your garden by planting scented flowers.

 

Your Exterior Is Not Well-Maintained

Your yard is not the only thing that you will need to pay attention to. You should also pay attention to the exterior of your home. There are several ways that you can fix up the exterior of your home. For example, you can replace outdated light bulbs and light fixtures.

You can also paint the front door. Hiring a pressure washing service to clean your home exterior is another way that you can improve the way that your home looks. Additionally, if you have damaged siding, then it is now is a good time for you to replace it.

Must-Dos for Home Staging

Home staging involves making necessary preparations for your home for sale in the real estate marketplace. It is all about trying to impress the buyer and increase your home’s appeal to fetch a reasonable price for it. Home staging focuses on showing why your home is an essential asset and taking the buyer through particular areas such as the kitchen, bathrooms, or living room.

 

Home staging works to eliminate the home’s negative aspects and shows your home in the best light. It works to distract the potential buyer from the house’s flaws and show what your house can offer without renovations or remodeling. Home staging allows you to move an edge ahead of the competition in a very competitive market and get a reasonable price for your property.

 

That said, home staging shows the prospective customer that the house meets their expectations and is not different from what was advertised earlier. With that, here are a few tips to help with your home staging.

 

Cleaning

Cleaning shows the client that you take proper care of your home. Start by cleaning every part of the house, from the floor to the ceiling and even your walls. If there are any appliances, ensures they are dust-free and spotless. Clean your bathrooms and give your tiles and grout a deep scrub. Depending on your budget, you can hire professional cleaners, such as a carpet cleaning service, who will turn the house upside down to make sure everything looks clean and new.

Declutter

Clutter makes your house look disorganized and may distract the potential customer from essential house features. Clutter also makes the house look less spacious and shows the customer that your home offers few storage options. Start by getting rid of everything you don’t need. Box up and store unnecessary items and free up your cabinets and shelves.

Remove Personal Customization

Home staging provides the prospect with a chance of visualizing themselves in a home. That said, remove all family photos, portraits, and personal art and keep other personal items hidden. Remove any clothing or children’s toys and ensure you clean out your counters. Get rid of anything reminiscent of the current house owner and other personal items. The house should look unoccupied and allow the customer to imagine themselves in the home and how they want to customize it to their preferences.

Lighting

You can utilize your home’s natural light by drawing your curtains and blinds. The more natural light comes into your home, the better since the client will view the home as energy efficient. You can opt for added fixtures and ensure you turn on the lights during staging.

This way, your home will appear brighter and shows the customer where all the switches are located. Ensure you replace any old or broken switches and lighting fixtures.

Top 5 Things You Can Do to Increase Your Home’s Value

When planning to sell your home, you want to get it off the market at the best price. While this is possible, it may not be easy, especially when your home doesn’t appear appealing to the potential buyer. No one wants to invest in a home that will be a liability after a few months. Here are things you can do to improve the value of your home.

Upgrade Appliances

Today, most people understand the value of modern appliances. Most of the appliances have upgraded features and can make your home look valuable to potential buyers. If you have old appliances, consider replacing them with modern ones.

While this may cost you a few dollars, you can be sure of a great return when selling the home. It’d be best to purchase energy-efficient appliances such as air conditioners, thermostats, refrigerators, and other essential items.

Clean and De-Clutter

No one wants to buy an untidy home. It comes with many responsibilities. The new homeowner would need to spend money and more time tidying up the home. To avoid putting off potential buyers, consider de-cluttering and cleaning your home.

You can involve your family members to get the job done as fast as possible. Or, if possible, hire a cleaning and dirt removal company to do the job for you. You want to ensure that the house looks sparkling clean and quickly attracts the attention of potential buyers.

Upgrade Your Kitchen

Most buyers often focus on the kitchen when planning to buy a home. In this case, the kitchen needs to look clean and appealing to the buyer. This is what determines how the buyer is going to negotiate for the home.

Consider changing some things in the kitchen. Start by replacing the old appliances with new and smart ones and check other fixtures such as sinks and faucets and replace the old ones. You can also paint the cabinets and replace the knobs with quality ones.

Paint the Exterior and Interior

Painting makes your home appear fresh, brand new, and appealing to the buyer. Check worn-out areas in the interior and exterior of your home and paint the affected surfaces. You may not need to paint the entire house.

When painting, seal all patches to make the walls appear soft with good finishing. Be careful with color choice since some buyers are often sensitive to some colors. It’d best to choose neutral colors for the entire house.

Replace the Floors

Most people often overlook the floors when remodeling homes. It is worth noting that some buyers will purchase a home with modern and valuable flooring. Stained carpets and worn-out tiles are a put-off to buyers, and you might end up selling your home at a throw-away price. Consider changing your tiles and carpets with modern designs. 

Alternatively, you can make your floors look new with a professional cleaning. This option could be a lot less expensive! Visit sanjosedrycarpetcleaning.com to learn more.

The Bottom Line

While you’re going to spend a few dollars renovating your home, you can be sure of getting the money back once you sell the home. You will also be sure of selling your home within your expected timelines and at the best value.

How to Start Investing in Real Estate

Real Estate

Not many people dream of being a landlord, and there could be plenty of reasons for it. If you have rented a place before, you are less likely to aspire to be a landlord. However, many individuals develop the smallest idea of becoming a landlord by investing more in the field of real estate. Businesses are increasing in number with every passing year, but the count of successful ventures doesn’t necessarily have to shoot up. Research is required to keep the money flowing in the right direction for profitable deals.

real estate

Real estate is undoubtedly one of the most lucrative fields of investment, but it isn’t as flashy as many others. Your existing investment portfolio can be diversified with this option, bringing in additional income. Almost every aspect of investing in real estate is beneficial, but not many investors are aware of the process involved in setting up a position in the market. Let us look at how you can start investing in real estate.

1.      Buy Real Estate Investment Trusts

REITs are often compared to mutual funds, but they have a distinct working structure, with companies owning commercial real estate occupying the prime positions. These trusts can be bought or invested in without the involvement of physical real estate. REIT has become a common retirement investment option since it pays high dividends. Investors who aren’t looking for regular income can reinvest these dividends for future income. Although REITs are a good investment, they can be complex. So, it is best to learn about the various applications and risks involved before putting a large sum of money into it. If you are new to real estate investment, publicly-traded REITs should be the ideal purchase. All you need is a brokerage account to buy these from firms facilitating this transaction.

2.      Online Real Estate Investing Platforms

Borrowers and investors can connect on online investing platforms. Anyone who wants to finance a project can sign up for the services of such a website, and you can get started either through equity or debt. Quarterly or monthly income is expected by the investors in exchange for the fee paid for the risk taken. You surely need to put in some money to reap these benefits.

Online Real Estate

3.      Invest in Rental Properties

If you know the basics of real estate investment, this might be an option you might be familiar with. You can enter the market with some money to invest in a property that is likely to yield better profit. Buying and renting out entire investment properties is also a wise move, but you need to have sufficient funds to do so. Investors must also have an understanding of the working of the market in order to apply strategies that will apply in all situations. Paying a property manager will be the only option if you don’t want the tenants to keep contacting you for every leak and damage.

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