Donna Coffin - ERA Key Realty Services - Distinctive Group

Posted by Donna Coffin on 3/16/2018

Many sellers arenít sure how to give a positive spin to their small backyard. We imagine that most homeowners want a large expanse of green with various types of trees and maybe even room for a vegetable garden.

However, there are ways to make a small yard a good thing. After all, less yard means less grass to mow and water and worry over when drought hits.

In this article, weíre going to give you some tips on making your tiny yard appealing to buyers.

Decorate wisely

Making an area seem more spacious is often a matter of smart decorating. Just like you can make a room appear bigger with bright colors and mirrors, you can make a yard appear bigger with proper landscaping and outdoor furniture.

When it comes to patio furniture, keep it simple. You donít need a massive set of furniture in a small yard, and filling your yard up with chairs will make it feel crowded.

Choose a few well-placed decorations for your yard, and keep it simple.

Container gardening

A good way to make a small yard feel more in touch with nature is to plant in containers. Sticking to a central theme with your plants will give the yard a sense of continuity and simplicity that will make it feel welcoming.

Container gardening is also a good option for people who live in arid areas prone to drought. You can choose drought resistant plants that are easy to maintain.

Landscaping is key

You know how a cluttered and messy bedroom feels small and unwelcoming? The same is true for a cluttered and unkempt backyard. Cutting the grass and trimming the trees and hedges will go a long way. However, also remember to not use your backyard as a storage space. Tools and equipment that arenít put away will make the yard feel even smaller than it already is.

Set a focal point

Small backyards donít need a lot of features and amenities. One key area is enough to satisfy the eye. Rather than choosing several small decorations, stick to one thing. Whether itís a small box garden, a fireplace, or a well-placed tree, drawing the eye is one way to distract from the size of the space.

Small is a style

The last important thing to keep in mind is that houses with small backyards are usually found in locations where small backyards are expected. You wouldnít dream of finding a large backyard behind a class brownstone in Brooklyn, and as a result, the small backyards of those builds have taken on a charm of their own.

If you arenít sure about how to incorporate landscaping and decorations in your tiny backyard, look up some inspiration online for urban backyards that match the style of your home. This will attract buyers who are already looking for something that your home already has--character.

Posted by Donna Coffin on 2/2/2018

Receiving multiple offers on a residence is a home seller's dream come true. However, if a home seller faces a tight deadline to review several homebuying proposals simultaneously, making the right decision may prove to be exceedingly difficult.

Ultimately, evaluating multiple home offers at the same time can be quick and seamless Ė here are three tips to ensure that you can review various home offers and make an informed decision.

1. Consider the Homebuyer's Perspective

Although you probably won't be able to find out the identity of a homebuyer who submits an offer on your home, you may be able to learn about the homebuyer's perspective if you study a home offer closely.

For example, a homebuyer who wants to close on a residence as soon as possible may face a time crunch. And if this buyer has fallen in love with your home, he or she may do anything possible to acquire it.

On the other hand, a homebuyer who submits a lowball proposal may be looking for a bargain. Therefore, this home offer may fall far below your initial expectations, and you should not hesitate to decline or counter the proposal.

2. Analyze the Housing Market

Operating in a buyer's market or a seller's market may dictate how you proceed with multiple offers on your house.

If you've listed a house in a seller's market, the number of homebuyers likely exceeds the number of first-rate houses that are available. As such, you may want to accept a home offer in a seller's market only if it matches or exceeds your expectations.

Comparatively, if you're working in a buyer's market, there likely is an abundance of high-quality residences and a shortage of homebuyers. Thus, you may be more inclined to accept a home offer that nets you the biggest profit Ė even if the home offer falls shy of your initial home selling expectations.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

If you're unsure about how to approach multiple offers on your home, it certainly pays to consult with a real estate agent. In fact, a real estate agent can help you examine various offers and decide which home offer Ė if any Ė is right for you.

By hiring a real estate agent, you'll gain an expert ally who will support you throughout the home selling journey.

Typically, a real estate agent will learn about your home selling goals and ensure you can set a competitive price for your residence. He or she also will host home showings and open houses, negotiate with homebuyers on your behalf and do everything possible to help you get the best price for your home, regardless of the real estate market's conditions.

Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent is prepared to respond to your home selling concerns and queries. And if you have questions about a home offer, your real estate agent is available to respond to your questions at any time.

Take the guesswork out of evaluating multiple offers on your home Ė use the aforementioned tips, and you can determine the best course of action based on the home offers at your disposal.

Posted by Donna Coffin on 11/24/2017

If youíre trying to sell your home, there are many things you need to think about. One of the reasons that itís wise to hire a realtor is that they can handle a lot of the difficult stuff for you. From home showings to phone calls to sealing the deal, your realtor will be with you every step of the way. 

One thing that you can do to help your realtor out is trying to avoid things that will scare off buyers in your home. While some things are out of your control (weíre looking at you radon), you can check and remedy a lot of problems before a buyer even sets foot in your home.

Leaky, Aging Roof

Roofs last around 20-25 years. If itís been forever since you have paid attention to your roof, youíll need to take a second look before selling. Your buyer is going to either ask for some kind of rebate or go for a home with a newer roof. Roofs are one of the things that home inspectors often see the most problems with.  

Outdated Gutters

If your gutters are in disrepair, you might want to have them cleaned or replace them altogether. Faulty gutters are often what causes problems with the roof. If rain water or snow melt canít properly drain from the gutters, more leaks may be found in the home.  

Old Appliances

If your appliances are outdated, consider replacing them. Buyers donít want to move into a new home only to need to head out to buy a new refrigerator, range, or dryer. Buyers like things to be ready for them, and theyíre willing to pay for it. Youíll definitely get a return on your investment when you buy new appliances.    

Outdated Or Neglected HVAC System

Itís important to keep up with regular maintenance when it comes to your heating and cooling system. Keep it clean and keep regular maintenance appointments. These systems are costly to repair and buyers do not want to deal with these issues immediately (or ever if they could avoid them!) Get the HVAC system serviced before you put a for sale sign out front to keep your buyers happy throughout the inspection and sale process.   

High Price

Your realtor will be a big help in assisting you to price your home right. They will perform a CMA (comparative market analysis) in order to help you find the sweet spot for pricing your home. An overpriced listing will make buyers wonder. A property must be priced right in order to get buyers through the door to even look at the home.

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Posted by Donna Coffin on 10/13/2017

If you want to sell your house, you may want to take a close look at your home's interior. That way, you can identify any potential home interior issues and address them as quickly as possible.

Determining the best ways to transform your home's interior from drab to fab may seem difficult, particularly for a first-time home seller. Fortunately, there are several proven ways to enhance your residence's interior, and these include:

1. Cleaning

If it has been several weeks or months since you last cleaned your house, there is no time like the present to perform extensive home interior cleaning.

Wipe down countertops, mop the floors and clean every room of your house. By doing so, you can make your house look clean and pristine.

Also, if you need extra help cleaning your home, you may want to hire a cleaning company. With a team of home cleaning professionals at your side, you can speed up the process of improving your house's interior.

2. Decluttering

Clutter is an eyesore that home sellers should try to eliminate. Luckily, there are many quick, easy ways to remove clutter from your house.

Oftentimes, one person's clutter is another's treasure, and you may be able to sell excess items at a garage sale or online. Set competitive prices for your excess items, and you should have no trouble stirring up interest in these items.

You also can donate excess items to charities in your city or town. Reach out to local charities, and you may be able to get excess items picked up from your house.

3. Interior Upgrades

If you notice home interior lights are no longer working, cracks or dents in your walls or other minor home interior issues, you should spend some time performing various upgrades and repairs.

In most instances, minor home interior upgrades and repairs may require just a few minutes to complete. Meanwhile, these home interior improvements can make a world of difference in the eyes of homebuyers and can help your home stand out to potential buyers.

Clearly, there are many ways to improve a house's interior in no time at all. But if you require additional assistance, you can always hire a real estate agent to help you generate interest in your residence.

A real estate agent knows exactly what it takes to bolster a house's interior. He or she can help you assess your home's interior and prioritize assorted home interior improvements.

Furthermore, a real estate agent will make it easy to navigate all stages of the home selling process. This housing market professional will help you list your house and promote it to large groups of potential buyers. Plus, if you receive offers on your house, a real estate agent can help you evaluate these proposals and make an informed decision.

Don't hesitate to enhance your home's interior. Instead, consider the aforementioned options, and you can take the first step to improve your house's interior.

Posted by Donna Coffin on 6/9/2017

If youíre planning on buying a new home sometime in the near future, you may be wondering when the best time of year to buy a home really is. Thereís many theories about when the best time of year to buy a home is. Itís widely known that inventory on homes available for sale picks up in spring. That means that inventory increases, but so too does the volume of competition for people who are buying homes. Just because spring is busy, in real estate that doesnít mean that itís necessarily the best time to buy. 

Spring is, however, a great time to sell your home. The same goes for the summer as the buying frenzy continues right into the fall for most home buyers. As a buyer or a seller, youíll want to have a good understanding of the housing market no matter what time of year youíre making your property transactions. Whether youíre buying or selling, youíll want to know how to get the best bang for your buck. While many people are ready for a change after the long winter months, yet, many people can hold out through other times of the year. 

The Market Changes With The Seasons

As the seasons change, so too do the number of people selling versus the number of people who are looking to buy. If you donít mind the competition and know what youíre looking for, any time is a good time to buy. As a buyer, youíll either be facing low inventory, tough competition, or a combination of the two. If youíre scoping out the type of home youíd like to live in, youíll want to browse in the spring. Have your pre-approval ready just in case you find a home you love at the right price. If youíre not in a rush, spring shopping can give you a good idea of whatís out there for you. Youíll be able to narrow down the type of home you want and where youíd like to live when the time is right.

Thereís Really No Golden Rule For Timing

When it comes to buying and selling real estate, there is no sweet spot during the year as to when youíll have better luck. Being prepared and understanding the trends in your area are a good start. When you hire the right real estate agent, they can be your advocate throughout the process of either buying or selling. Agents can research different trends from the time of year that properties are sold in a certain neighborhood right through to the correct pricing for a home just like yours or the one you are looking for.

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