Ask Jean Posts Tagged as Home tips

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.

Creepy, Crawly...Nasty!

Published 03/06/2015

Spring is almost here. Wood boring insects are about to reveal themselves. Termites and carpenter ants feed on dead wood.  They accomplish this invisibly.  Once termites swarm, they've already done some damage.  By swarming, they are actively trying to form another colony. If you've ever experienced a termite swarm, you know what I'm talking about. Clouds of discarded wings fill the room, as the unsuccessful explorers drop to the ground.

Most of the damage that termites cause cannot be seen until it's too late.  They quietly tunnel from the ground and eat their way through the inner sills of your house.  Left undetected for a long period of time, they can compromise the structural integrity of the house.  Pretty impressive for creatures barely 1 centimeter in length!

Check your sill for damage by poking it with a sharp nail or poker of some sort. A compromised sill will allow the poker to stick right into the wood.  Not good. A solid sill will withstand any tapping. If you notice a large area of damage, consult a licensed, professional contractor to replace it. Follow that up with a visit from a reputable pest control company.  

How do you prevent termites and carpenter ants from eating you out of house and home? If you have garden beds edged in wood, remove them.  If your deck was made from untreated lumber, replace it. Keep bushes and trees away from the house. Any damp or dead wood is a veritable banquet for these buggers. These unwanted guests need to go eat elsewhere.


What's That SMELL??

Published 02/23/2015

We know you love your pets.  They're part of the family, right?  Over time, we become nose-blind to just how badly they can smell.  When you're listing your house, be sure you've eliminated all traces of pet odors.  Having the house professionally cleaned is the best way to be sure your home smells and looks fresh. 

Pet dander can trigger allergic reactions to a lot of potential buyers.  Your sale will be lost before you can say "achoo!" Remember that you want to attract the most people as possible to your home.  Make it a welcoming environment. Not everyone is as enamored with Fido and Fluffy as you are.

Once the place is clean, remove all pet paraphernalia.  This includes food bowls, dog beds, litter boxes and cat climbing towers.  Take the pets out of the home during all showings. While it's inconvenient to you in the short term, it will help buyers to see the space itself.  The other items are a distraction.

Placing candles strategically throughout the house helps.  Or, put a pot of simmering water on the stove.  Fill it with cinnamon, apples and nutmeg to mimic the smell of apple pie.  If you have time, bake some brownies and leave them on the counter.  Not only will it be comforting to smell, you've now left a sweet taste of home in their mouth.