Ask Jean Posts Tagged as Home Selling

Jean Allard, SRES is Vice President and Sales Associate with Keystone Real Estate Group. Feel free to comment on Jean's blog posts and ask any questions you may have on all facets of real estate!

Did you know...

Published 05/06/2015

The vast majority of home buyers begin their search on-line. Websites like Zillow and Trulia attract 88% of active buyers. Despite that statistic, some people still attempt to sell without the help of a professional realtor. They pay for a newspaper advertisement. MAYBE someone from the other 12% will see it. They tack a sign to a tree in their yard and hope for the best.

Seriously? Realtors have access to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), which shares information with over 30 additional websites. Now THAT'S visibility. Which strategy makes more sense to you? I thought so.

Cheap Tricks for Curb Appeal

Published 03/09/2015

Spring is FINALLY showing its sunny face!  Along with the tulips, home listings are starting to blossom, as well.  How do you make your home stand out from the crowd?

  • Power wash the exterior of your home. Rid your house of unsightly mold, especially on the north side of the house.
  • Get your landscape under control.  Clean out the dead leaf piles from last fall and put down some fresh mulch.
  • Add some brightly colored flower pots to your front step.  Plant seasonal flowers in them for a welcoming look.
  • Paint your front door.  This is a cheap fix for a great ROI. A cheerful coat of fresh paint beckons buyers to "come on in."
  • Hang a fresh wreath of seasonal forsythia on the front door. 

Once the exterior of your house looks like a breath of fresh air, the buyers will want to see the interior. Peak their interest by enticing them to want to see more.

Top 3 Reasons To Sell Now

Published 03/05/2015

Spring is the time when the real estate market explodes.  People want to complete their moves before their children go back to school in the fall.  The problem? That's when your competition lists their homes.  How will your house ever stand out from the 3 other homes on your street going on the market? Now is the time to take action. Why?

  1. Fewer tire kickers are out in the winter.  Serious buyers will still be looking, and there will be slim pickings. Less inventory means buyers have to look in the "clearance aisle" for a bargain.
  2. Less loan backlogs. The lending institutions have smaller piles on their desks at this time of year.  The path from P&S Agreement to closing is much smoother.
  3. Interest rates are still quite low. It's uncertain how long that will be the case.  If you are thinking of selling and purchasing another home, you will get more bang for your buck if you act now. Take advantage of it while you can.

Whatever your reason is to sell your home, the key is to make YOUR house more attractive to a buyer.  If you are ahead of the time curve, you have a better chance of standing out in a smaller crowd.

Uh oh...Where's the Key?

Published 03/04/2015

Unless you are a real estate professional, you are probably not that familiar with lockboxes.  Essentially, it is a box with a combination lock that stores keys.  They are typically attached to an entryway door.  Many agents use them so that buyer's agents can have easy access to the home.  We don't like them for a number of reasons.

  • Are the other agents diligent in returning the key and locking the house up properly?
  • How do you know for certain that the key doesn't get lost or stolen?
  • We've heard horror stories of agents giving the codes to the clients.  They let themselves in.  Is this ethical? No. Does it happen? Yes.
  • A key cannot tell you how old the roof is, or explain that mystery leak in the basement.
  • If a key is not in the lockbox, you can bet the buyers will go on to the next house.  They most likely will not return. Result? A potential sale is lost.
  • If a seller is paying a commission to an agent, why is a key doing the work?

Think long and hard before deciding to allow a lockbox to sell your house. Used properly, it's convenient. Used improperly, it's a waste of time and a potential sale.

Who IS that lovely child?

Published 02/26/2015

Your house is on the market.  It's clean and ready to put its best face forward, right?  Here's something to keep in mind. A prospective buyer needs to see open space, and to envision living there with their family.  If you have created a photographic shrine to honor little Susie, the buyers get distracted.  While your child is obviously the most beautiful creature in the universe, the buyer gets stuck.  You see, they need to imagine that wall filled with photos of THEIR family.  Not everyone has the imagination to see past YOUR beautiful children. Pack away those family photos.  You can create a new collage in the new house.  The one you are selling needs to be neutrally pleasing. If buyers are admiring your pictures, they are ignoring what you WANT them to see - the house!