Monday, December 22, 2008

To deck the halls or not to deck the halls?

As the holiday season is upon us you ask the question, should I decorate as usual for the holidays or keep it to a minimum. It's best to make your home festive for the holidays, but not to over do it. Keep in mind the buyers and the mental moving van need to move in still. Keep your decorations tasteful, and not too over board. Time to keep the "dancing Santa" in the Christmas decorations box. As for yard decorations keep it simple. A few decorated trees & shrubs. Try not to out do the "Griswolds" this winter. Keep in mind next year you'll be able to bring them all out in your new house, and make it yours. I hope this helps you. I hope you will all have a very Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

What makes a home stand out?

What does make a home stand out from the rest? When you are looking at homes and you just walked through your 10th home. They have the tendency to blend together, but their is usually one that will stand out. These are the qualities they will typically have.:

Plain neutrally light colored walls, such as white & beige.

Neutrally colored carpet, such as beige.

A Clean house- If you are in a pinch, throw everything in to a garbage bag & put it in the garage till you can get to it, after the showing.

Fresh Paint or Carpet- if you can, at least paint, it's cheap & it makes a difference.

Few large furnishings- Place in to storage all of your big furniture, it makes a room feel larger.

Cut the Clutter- Clean counter tops, with nothing on them. Rooms you can walk around in.

Beautiful decor- Yes, staging your home does work.

Great curb appeal- Beautify your yard.

Minimize your wall hangings- Keep it mostly decoration.

Take down the family photo wall & paint it.- It makes it hard for a new family to see them selves there.

Homey Smells- Anything baking, & vanilla. I recommend baking some cookies before you leave.

Leave and let the agent walk the client through the house. It's hard to address any issues the buyer might have when the owner within ear shot. It also reminds the client they are in your house not "their" house.

If you are going to remodel your home spend your money the the places you will make the most money. The kitchen, & the master bed & bath.

Add things like tile, hardwood floors, granite counter tops, update old hardware it will make your house look newer, black or stainless steel appliances.

Keep in mind you are trying to encourage the mental moving van to arrive. You need to make space for their stuff, as they mentally decorate, and think about how the couch will fit in your living room.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Sales Meeting

Every Tuesday, I will add highlights from my office sales meetings.

This week we had Wells Fargo in to our sales meeting they gave us new information on FHA loan program changes that will be taking place at the 1st of the new year.

At the 1st of the year in 2009 you will need 3.5% to put down on a new home, for an FHA loan.

There are new loan limits for FHA- They will reduce Utah County to $271,050, from $323,750. Which they put in to place just a year ago. They are treating Utah County as a rural county.

Can you believe it! Talk about dumb! This new loan limit needs to be changed. We can petition for the change in FHA loan limits, and have them revise the limit.

For more information on the new limits go to:

Monday, December 8, 2008

Buying a House? Did You Know?

Are you buying a home?

Did you know that you do not have to pay your Real Estate agent and they work for you, and represent you. The seller pays for your agent. How? As a realtor I belong to the multiple listing service and as such have an agreement with my "MLS" to pay the other agent a specified percentage specified on the MLS.

Did you know that if you sign a buyer broker agreement with an agent that you are "with" that agent until the buyer broker agreement expires. You may not enter in to another agreement with another agent.

Did you know that you should look at homes with your agent. Going at it "solo" is not recommend. There are agents who will give you a list an have you do all of your own foot work. Making the appointments, looking at homes. Your agent typically dose this for you. All you need to do is tell you agent which homes you would like to see. Plan a day, or an afternoon, to look at the homes you would like to see.

Did you know houses begin to blend one in to the other after you have seen so many. You start to loose track after 10 houses, sometimes after 5. This is my recommendation, limit it to 10 houses at a time, if time allows. Next, give houses nick names this will help you remember the house. Keep a note book and pen with you, make notes on the print out about the houses. Throw away the print outs of the houses that don't work, it will confuse you.

Did you know your agent can be a huge value to you. Your agent can recommend an amount to offer to the sellers, they can make suggestions. They have experience and are a well spring of knowledge take advantage of it. Ask questions, have your agent make comments, and tell you what they think. They will do the "dirty work". They will negotiate on your behalf, let them be the bad guy.

Did you know their is no such thing as a bad offer. You never know till you try. They only say "no" to the agent.

Did you know you need to get pre-qualified as a buyer. This helps you to know how much house you can afford. If you have any credit issues they can help you there too.

Did you know that there are grant programs still available. You can qualify for any number of these programs and get up to $15,000 towards the purchase of your next home.

If you would like more information please feel free to call or email me.