Monday, April 26, 2010

Find Out the Difference in a Buyers Agent and a Sellers Agent

Find Out the Difference in a Buyers Agent and a Sellers Agent

In every real estate transaction - whether the transaction involves condos or other starter homes, luxury properties, or even commercial properties - there are buyers and sellers as well as real estate professional who represent them throughout the transaction. These are the buyers agent and the sellers agent - and each play a very different role throughout the sale.

Clearly, a buyers agent is the real estate professional who works with the buyers. These agents will focus on listening to what a buyer is looking for in a home, identifying the buyer's budget, providing information about different neighborhoods and school systems, and searching through lists of available properties that will meet their clients' needs. Buyers agents can work with their clients to find financing for their home purchase and will schedule times when the buyers they are working with can see available properties for themselves. Finally, the buyers agent will help to negotiate the price of the home and work to complete the transaction.

Similarly, the sellers agent - as you might expect - works with property owners who need to sell a home that they own. Whether the seller is looking for a larger or smaller home, leaving the area for the sake of a job, or is responsible for selling a home that was left to them as a part of a loved one's estate, the sellers agent takes the lead during the sale process. From helping the seller understand what's involved in selling a home to staging the property before prospective buyers see it to negotiating the final sales agreement, the sellers agent will focus on making sure the transaction goes smoothly for the seller.

Though the buyers agent and sellers agent will work together, each represents a very different interest throughout the property.

Article Alley

Friday, April 16, 2010


Top 10 Tips for Staging a Home

April 15, 2010 -- Realty Times Feature Article by Broderick Perkins

Provided your home-for-sale has the curb appeal to get potential buyers inside, keeping them inside for a further look requires a staging strategy that sticks the deal.

HGTV's offers what it considers the Top 10 tips that can turn a languishing listing to a multiple offer attraction.

• Reclaim the yard. First impressions rule. Spruce up curb appeal by maintaining a clean yard, adding plants for a splash of color and applying a fresh coat of paint to the front door.

• Let the foyer flourish. The home portal sets the tone for the entire home. Make the space up-to-date, well-maintained and eye catching -- top to bottom.

• Back off beige. Don't let neutral colored walls dominate a room. Splashes of color liven up boring spaces. Throw pillows, artwork and fresh flowers add pops of color and personality.

• Cure kitchen craziness. Consistency pleases. All countertops and cabinets should match. New hardware, a new backsplash and a thorough cleaning can transform a bleak kitchen into one with smiles.

• Denude the dining room. De-cluttering and depersonalizing is the first rule of home staging. Homebuyers can have trouble envisioning themselves living in a home that's full of the seller's personal items.

• Avoid focal point faux-pas. Highlight the great features in a home by positioning furniture to highlight them. Windows, fireplaces and other architectural details will be noticed by a buyer if they are emphasized in the home correctly.

• Perk up the patio. The outdoor space is an extension of the home. Capture a higher selling price by cleaning and adding style to any outdoor space with furniture, lighting and accessories.

• Master the master suite. The best approach to staging is often working with existing accessories. Using what is already in the room and repositioning the furniture will highlight the room's best features.

• Cure bathroom blues. Older vanities and dreadful wallpaper will make any bathroom feel outdated. Apply a fresh coat of neutral-hued paint and new hardware to modernize and brighten.

• Repurpose extra rooms. The value of a space decreases when homebuyers see a room without direction (think part office, part playroom, part home gym). Though almost every homeowner is guilty of having a "junk room," take sure to stage each room with a clear purpose before putting the home on the market.


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Getting Your Property Ready For A Warmer Market...

Ah, Spring … Make Sure Your Property Is Ready for a Warmer Market

Spring is a season of renewal – this year in particular. Just as the birds are chirping and flowers are starting to bloom, the U.S. economy is moving forward with real estate sales percolating in many markets. Indeed, the days grow longer in spring, allowing more time for consumers – especially those motivated by current, historically low interest rates and attractive home prices – to shop for their American dream.

If you’re considering selling your property this spring, now's a good time to complete some spring maintenance to make sure your home is in tip-top shape. Even if you aren't planning to sell your home, you should still add these chores to your list to help preserve your home's value and help avoid major repairs later on.

Walk Around the Outside

Check for any damage caused by winter's cold weather. Look for those sagging or loose gutters, window frames or siding. Is your roof missing any shingles, or is there any water damage under the eaves? Promptly schedule repairs for those items you can't do yourself.

Over the fall and winter, leaves, mud and debris may have accumulated in your gutters. Check your gutters for clogging and damage and schedule an appointment for cleaning.

Walk around your yard as if you were a first-time visitor. What impression does your home make? Be sure to clear away fallen branches and leaves. Loosen the soil around perennials, plant annuals or a vegetable garden. Prune shrubs and trees.

If your water supply has been off for the winter, turn it back on. Test your automatic sprinkler system or connect your water hose and check for cracks and leaks. Replace old washers or sprinkler heads.

Don't forget the backyard! Is it time to condition your deck? Be sure to hammer in any loose nails, or replace them with galvanized deck screws. Replace any broken boards or rails. Consider renting a power washer to clean dirt and mildew from the wood, and then apply an all-weather sealer or stain. Then dust off that patio furniture you kept protected over the winter.

Repair any broken fence boards and paint or seal them as needed. Clean the pool if it has been covered all winter. Wash windows, screens and windowsills; repair any winter damage.

Take a Tour Inside

Start making a list of things to do in each room. Then go to work. Dust walls and ceilings to remove cobwebs and wash any grimy areas. Wash window curtains or remove drapes for dry cleaning. Deep clean rugs and carpets. Dust and polish wood or laminate floors.

Clean fan blades using mild soapy water. Check the central air-conditioning unit for debris and obstructions; vacuum the main condenser coil on top of the unit. Check the operating condition of window air-conditioning units; remove and wash filters in mild soapy water.

Make sure all exhaust fans and vents are clean and clear. Don't forget to remove the lint buildup from the clothes dryer vent.

One often-overlooked area is the fireplace. Be sure to sweep ashes carefully into your fireplace's ash pit or into a dustpan. Clean and lightly oil fireplace tools. Remember it's springtime, so you may want to decorate the fireplace or wood stove with a large silk flower arrangement.

Look around for clutter. Are there items you don't use any longer? If you are planning on moving, what items will you not need? Consider having a garage sale and then either donate or trash the remaining items.

And lastly, don't forget to replace batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. A good time to change them is when you change your clock for daylight savings.

Although performing these spring chores may be dreaded task, they go a long way in maintaining and even enhancing the attractiveness and quality your home. With more buyers out and about, you must be sure your property is ready for its next new owner!