Cathy Lomasney's Blog
In a competitive selling market, it’s vital to make sure you take advantage of any way to give your home an edge over the competition.
Many sellers make expensive home improvements in the hopes of attracting buyers. But, even if you’re on a budget, there are ways to boost curb appeal and increase the value of your home to make your home competitive in today’s seller’s market.
In today’s post, I’m going to cover eight low-cost upgrades you can make to your home today. We tried to keep all of the upgrades under $100 so that you can stick to your budget while still making a big difference in your home.
1. Paint the front door ($30)
One of the first things a potential buyer will notice about your home is the front door. Putting on a fresh coat of paint, especially one that pops and contrasts with the color of your home, will help to make it stand out on the block.
2. Paint your interior trim and baseboards ($75 - $100)
Baseboards often get dirty or scuffed up over the years. Putting a fresh coat of paint will make the entire room look like new. Stick with white for most rooms--it will brighten them up and make them feel clean.
3. Replace your outlet and light switch plates ($20)
They get dirty, they crack, and they get covered in messy paint every time you repaint your walls. Outlet and switch plates see a lot of wear and tear, and a dirty one can be off-putting for potential buyers.
For just a few dollars each or less, replace them all to give the rooms of your home a facelift.
4. Replace fixtures ($50 - $100)
Whether it’s the knobs of your kitchen cabinets or faucet fixtures, there are a number of small items in the kitchen and bathrooms that can be upgraded.
Stainless steel is now out of style, with homeowners choosing brushed nickel and bronze over the traditional stainless.
5. Choose a new shower head ($30 - $50)
Installing a shower head is a lot easier than it looks. Plus, luxurious looking shower heads can be purchased for less than $50 on Amazon, making them a great choice to add a touch of indulgence to the shower.
6. Add new bright, energy efficient lighting ($30 - $50)
Bright LEDs can make a room feel more spacious and modern, and it can save you a few dollars on the electric bill. Installing new lights throughout the home is a good way to show off what lies within.
7. Paint or replace your mailbox ($20 - $80)
Mailboxes can easily get dirty and dented over the years and most of us pay little mind to them. But prospective buyers likely will be on the lookout for any signs of neglect when they view your home. Having a freshly painted mailbox will leave a good first impression.
8. Rent a pressure washer for a day ($50 - $100)
Pressure washing the exterior of your home can make a huge difference when it comes to upgrading curb appeal. Vinyl siding gets dirty quickly and isn’t all that easy to clean.
You can rent a pressure washer from The Home Depot or your local hardware store for typically less than $100 a day.
Selling a home should be a fast, easy process. However, challenges may arise that prevent you from quickly selling your house and maximizing your property sale earnings. And if you fail to plan ahead for the home selling journey, these challenges may get the best of you.
Ultimately, there are several things you need to know before you list your residence, such as:
1. The housing market fluctuates constantly.
The housing market in your city or town may change frequently. Fortunately, if you allocate time and resources to analyze the local housing sector, you can determine if a buyer's or seller's market is currently in place and prepare accordingly.
In a buyer's market, there may be an abundance of quality houses that sell within weeks or months of their initial listing dates. Comparatively, in a seller's market, there may be a shortage of first-rate residences, and the best houses generally will sell shortly after they are listed.
To determine if a buyer's or seller's market is in effect, you should find out how quickly houses are selling in your city or town. You also should assess how your house stacks up against comparable residences that are currently available. With this housing market data in hand, you may be better equipped than ever before to succeed during the home selling journey, regardless of the current real estate sector's conditions.
2. Your home's curb appeal may have far-flung effects on your property selling experience.
How your home looks to buyers may dictate your house selling success. For instance, if your residence boasts amazing curb appeal, it may generate lots of interest from prospective buyers. On the other hand, if your house fails to impress buyers when they see it for the first time, your residence may linger on the real estate market for an extended period of time.
For a home seller, it often is beneficial to upgrade a residence's curb appeal. Because if you mow the lawn, trim the hedges and perform other home exterior upgrades, you could differentiate your residence from other available houses. As such, you could stir up significant interest in your home.
3. Working with a real estate agent may help you speed up the house selling journey.
A real estate agent is crucial for a home seller, as this housing market professional can offer expert insights into the property selling journey. If you need help establishing a competitive initial asking price for your residence, for example, a real estate agent is ready to assist you. Or, if you want to sell your home as quickly as possible, a real estate agent can help you do just that.
As you get set to list your residence, you should plan ahead. If you start preparing for the house selling journey today, you could enter the real estate market as a property selling expert. As a result, you could reap the benefits of a quick, profitable house selling experience.
When it melts in your mouth, it tastes is so good! Men hoard it, kids always want more, women adore it, and for most people, Valentine's Day isn't complete without eating it. Wondering what that could be? It is the beloved, darling chocolate.
Chocolate is food produced from the seeds of a cocoa bean, and it is a crucial ingredient of different desserts like cake, candy, ice-cream, etc. Chocolate has some fun facts that are not well known. Here are some of them:
1. The chocolate bar is more than 100 years old. The original chocolate bar was made in England way back in 1842, by the Cadbury Company. This company still exists and is famous for its delicious Easter-themed chocolates treats amongst other different assortments of goodies.
2. Cocoa beans once served as currency. Cocoa beans were so valuable to early Mayans and Aztecs that they used them as currency. The Aztecs could buy a turkey for 100 cocoa beans, a rabbit for four cocoa beans, and so much more.
3. Chocolate is food for the gods. The botanical name of Cocoa, "Theobroma cacao" means food of the gods.
4. A chocolate bar could cost more than an iPhone X. The world's most expensive chocolate bar is the "Wispa Gold." It is wrapped in an edible gold leaf and costs a staggering $1,430 per bar.
5. Chocolate prevents heart disease. Eating dark chocolate can decrease the odds of suffering heart disease by over 30 percent. Also, dark chocolate improves blood flow and lower blood pressure. However, overeating chocolate is also bad for health.
6. A chocolate bar could weigh more than an SUV. The world's biggest chocolate bar weighed 5,792.50 kg. Created by Thorntons PLC, the ingredients used for making this massive bar of chocolate were sugar, milk, butter oil, cocoa butter, emulsifier, and cocoa mass.
7. Africa is the new home of cocoa. Despite its Amazonia roots, nearly 70% of the world's supply comes from Africa. Cote d'Ivoire is the largest single producers providing about 30% of the world's cocoa.
8. Making chocolate is hard-work. Eating a bar of chocolate will probably take a few minutes, but making it takes time and require a lot of effort to finish. It takes four hundred beans of Cocoa to produce one pound of chocolate.
When next you are enjoying a cup of chocolate or a piece of chocolate pie, remember all these cool facts about it.
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Home appraisals are an important part of the buying and selling process. Lenders use appraisals to make sure that the home is worth what the borrower is paying. A home’s appraisal value is based on a number of factors, all of which we’ll discuss in this post.
Whether you’re a buyer, seller, or are just learning about the process of buying a home so you’ll be better equipped in the future, this article is for you.
How is a home appraisal different from an inspection?
While home appraisals and inspections are performed by licensed or certified professionals, they have to different functions. An inspection ensures the safety of a home, as well as whether or not it will need repairs in the immediate or near future.
Appraisals, on the other hand, aim to value a home based on its property value, the size of the property, and the location of the property. The condition of the home is a factor in valuing a home, which is why some people confused appraisals with inspections.
Who pays for appraisals?
Like most closing costs, a home appraisal is a burden that falls on the buyer. Typically, the lender you choose will work with will actually order the appraisal. The cost, which usually amounts to a few hundred dollars, can be added to your closing fees. You can find the cost for an appraisal listed on the Closing Disclosure document provided by your chosen lender.
Which factors determine the home’s value?
To appraise the house itself, appraisers will look at the condition of the home. They’ll also weigh the features of the home in their valuation--things like the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, for example.
However, the two key characteristics of a home that contribute to its value are its age and size.
Which external factors contribute to the home’s value?
As you might suspect, the location of your home matters greatly when it comes to appraisals. Homes are appraised based off of average prices for their neighborhood and region.
Other location factors include how accessible the home is, if it’s located on a waterfront, and whether it has desirable views.
When does a home get appraised?
While your experience may vary based on your specific circumstances, most appraisals occur after a buyer has signed a purchase contract. One this is done, the lender will take the steps necessary to order and process the appraisal.
How long is the home appraisal process?
Once the buyer has signed a purchase contract, the appraisal is usually completed and processed within 7 days. The appraisal report will be sent to the lender. This report contains the appraised value of the home. Buyers are entitled to a copy of this report, and should keep one for their own records.