Category Archives: Seller Info

Five Habits of Highly Productive Real Estate Agents

I’ll let you in on a little secret.  You could take the title of this blog and replace “Real Estate Agents” with your profession and you would increase your productivity!  But Real Estate is my business and time management is a real challenge that I want to address from the perspective of being a Real Estate Agent.

With so many distractions, it is a wonder that real estate agents are productive at all.  Working to become a highly productive real estate agent is an ongoing process.  Creating habits that produce consistent results allows you to achieve your maximum potential.  Between phone calls, emails, listing presentations, prospecting calls and buyer appointments, how do I stay productive?

I keep myself focused, alert and on tract with these five habits:

  1. Focus on the Most Important Tasks.  Be mindful to focus on income generating tasks and tasks that produce results.  Schedule time on your calendar and list out everything you will work on.  Number each item and work through your list.  Complete what you can during your scheduled time without any interruptions or distractions (see #2).  Do this every day.
  2. Remove Distractions.  The day can quickly get away from you between the phone, email, Internet and any other interruption.  Turn it all off and stay focused on your task at hand.  Don’t allow yourself a quick vacation on Facebook or getting off track by answering emails.  Cut yourself off from all distractions, work down your list and take a break once you are complete.
  3. Use Positive Affirmations.  Crazy, I know but they actually do work!  They can take a negative attitude and turn it around just by repeating a few constructive, upbeat words. 
  4. Take a Cat Nap.  Making time and grabbing a few z‘s might seem like an odd productivity tip, but studies have shown that feeling refreshed after a nap can significantly improve concentration and performance.  30 minutes is all it takes.
  5. Set Daily Goals.  Wake up each morning with your goals outlined.  These should be incorporated into your daily tasks.  Setting your sites on a goal each day offers clarity and promotes a more sustained drive.

Here’s a bonus.  Break out of the norm.  Don’t be afraid to branch out and try something that makes you a little uncomfortable.  Stepping outside of your comfort zone can be an amazing place that offers growth potential you never believed possible. Whatever your profession, these habits will contribute to your productivity. 

Until next time, Irene

Pricing your house to sell – The Basic Six!

Why does one house sell quickly for a stellar price while another has a “For Sale” sign in the yard for months? Is it luck? Probably not. The sales price and length of marketing time are determined by six basic factors. And you, as the seller, control four of them.

Location – Your neighborhood and your home’s location within the subdivision are important. Does your lot border a golf course or a busy street?

Condition of Property – Is your home updated and well-maintained or does it need redecorating and repair? Is it “staged” to show at its best?

Terms – Can you carry a second mortgage? Is your loan assumable? Can you be flexible with closing and occupancy dates?

Market Conditions – How does the number of available homes (new and resale) compare with the number of buyers? Interest rates always affect the number of qualified, motivated buyers.

Price – Is your property priced correctly? A new listing receives the most activity during the first 3-4 weeks, so be sure to price your home correctly right from the beginning. Price is a very important factor that can offset other deficiencies.

Your real estate professional – The agent you select will make a difference. As an experienced, knowledgeable real estate professional, I will price your home correctly, market it extensively, and negotiate effectively on your behalf. If you’re thinking of selling, please call me.

6 Reasons to Reduce Your Home Price

While you’d like to get the best price for your home, consider our six reasons to reduce your home price.

Home not selling? That could happen for a number of reasons you can’t control, like a unique home layout or having one of the few homes in the neighborhood without a garage. There is one factor you can control: your home price.

These six signs may be telling you it’s time to lower your price.

1. You’re drawing few lookers

You get the most interest in your home right after you put it on the market because buyers want to catch a great new home before anybody else takes it. If your real estate agent reports there have been fewer buyers calling about and asking to tour your home than there have been for other homes in your area, that may be a sign buyers think it’s overpriced and are waiting for the price to fall before viewing it.

2. You’re drawing lots of lookers but have no offers

If you’ve had 30 sets of potential buyers come through your home and not a single one has made an offer, something is off. What are other agents telling your agent about your home? An overly high price may be discouraging buyers from making an offer.

3. Your home’s been on the market longer than similar homes

Ask your real estate agent about the average number of days it takes to sell a home in your market. If the answer is 30 and you’re pushing 45, your price may be affecting buyer interest. When a home sits on the market, buyers can begin to wonder if there’s something wrong with it, which can delay a sale even further. At least consider lowering your asking price.

4. You have a deadline

If you’ve got to sell soon because of a job transfer or you’ve already purchased another home, it may be necessary to generate buyer interest by dropping your price so your home is a little lower priced than comparable homes in your area. Remember: It’s not how much money you need that determines the sale price of your home, it’s how much money a buyer is willing to spend.

5. You can’t make upgrades

Maybe you’re plum out of cash and don’t have the funds to put fresh paint on the walls, clean the carpets, and add curb appeal. But the feedback your agent is reporting from buyers is that your home isn’t as well-appointed as similarly priced homes. When your home has been on the market longer than comparable homes in better condition, it’s time to accept that buyers expect to pay less for a home that doesn’t show as well as others.

6. The competition has changed

If weeks go by with no offers, continue to check out the competition. What have comparable homes sold for and what’s still on the market? What new listings have been added since you listed your home for sale? If comparable home sales or new listings show your price is too steep, consider a price reduction.

More from HouseLogic

How to ready your home for sale at little cost

How to review offers on your home

Other web resources

Setting the right price

More on setting the right price

G.M. Filisko is an attorney and award-winning writer who made strategic price reductions that led to the sale of a Wisconsin property. A frequent contributor to many national publications including Bankrate.com, REALTOR® Magazine, and the American Bar Association Journal, she specializes in real estate, business, personal finance, and legal topics.

Read more: http://buyandsell.houselogic.com/articles/6-Reasons-To-Reduce-Your-Home-Price/#ixzz17Grb1Xe2

Holiday Lighting Safety Checklist

By: Pat Curry

Published: November 18, 2009

Before you plug in and light up for the holidays, run your decorations through this quick safety check.

Inspect light strings. Discard any that are damaged. Frayed or cracked electrical cords or broken sockets are leading fire hazards. 

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for connecting multiple strings. The general limit is three strings.  Light strings with stacked plugs can usually accommodate greater lengths than end-to-end connections.

Replace burned-out bulbs promptly. Empty sockets can cause the entire string to overheat. 

Make sure outdoor lighting is UL-rated for exterior use. Exterior lights, unlike those used inside the house, need to be weather-resistant. The same goes for any extension cords used outdoors.

Don’t use outdoor lights indoors. They’re too hot for interior use. For the coolest bulbs and greatest energy efficiency, try LED lights, which come in a wide range of styles and colors.

Don’t attach light strings with nails or staples. They can cut through the wire insulation and create a fire hazard. Only use UL-approved hangers.

Take exterior lights down within 90 days. The longer they stay up, the more likely they are to suffer damage from weather and critters chewing on them. 

Store lights safely. Tangled lights can lead to damaged cords and broken sockets. After the holidays, coil each string loosely around a stiff piece of cardboard, wrap it in paper or fabric to protect the bulbs, and store in a sturdy container until next year.  

Pat Curry is a former senior editor at BUILDER, the official magazine of the National Association of Home Builders, and a frequent contributor to real estate and home-building publications.

Tips For Seniors Considering Selling South Central Vermont Real Estate

To Sell or Not to Sell?

That is a question with which many seniors are wrestling these days. One the one hand, older homeowners are faced with rising maintenance costs, personal physical constraints, a desire to live a more carefree and less complicated lifestyle, a realistic look at future needs, such as being near public transportation and/or quality health care, and living in a “too-large” home. On the other hand, they are reluctant to leave a neighborhood where they are known and respected, move further from friends and family, consider downsizing and parting with treasured items, and undertaking the seemingly overwhelming job of emptying one home and setting up another. In addition, they don’t want to give up the security or the memories tied to their current home.

A knowledgeable and understanding real estate agent who is familiar with the needs and desires of the 55+ set, combined with the services of an attorney who specializes in both real estate and estate planning and an accountant who deals with senior tax implications, can be invaluable to you in looking at all aspects of selling you South Central Vermont real estate and helping you determine what is best for you.

If you do decide to sell, BankRate.com cautions you to first get a written market analysis and a financial evaluation which will help you and your team of advisors address the realities of the market, your investments, and tax objectives.

Selling Your Home

Continue reading →

Tips for Seniors Selling South Central Vermont Real Estate

To sell or not to sell? That is a question with which many seniors are wrestling these days. One the one hand, older homeowners are faced with rising maintenance costs, personal physical constraints, a desire to live a more carefree and less complicated lifestyle, a realistic look at future needs, such as being near public transportation and/or quality health care, and living in a “too-large” home. On the other hand, they are reluctant to leave a neighborhood where they are known and respected, move further from friends and family, consider downsizing and parting with treasured items, and undertaking the seemingly overwhelming job of emptying one home and setting up another. In addition, they don’t want to give up the security or the memories tied to their current home.

Finding Real Estate Agent

A knowledgeable and understanding real estate agent who is familiar with the needs and desires of the 55+ set, combined with the services of an attorney who specializes in both real estate and estate planning and an accountant who deals with senior tax implications, can be invaluable to you in looking at all aspects of selling your South Central Vermont real estate and helping you determine what is best for you. Senior Expert Margie Behr also advises that you think about taking out a home equity loan before you put your house on the market and that you involve your whole family in the decision-making process.

If you do decide to sell, BankRate.com cautions you to first get a written market analysis and a financial evaluation which will help you and your team of advisors address the realities of the market, your investments, and tax objectives.

Continue reading →

Staging Your South Central Vermont Home For An Open House

You are selling your South Central Vermont home and the first Open House only a week away. The house is filled with clutter and things you don’t want to throw away. But the clutter is not appealing to potential South Central Vermont home buyers. What do you? Here are staging tips for an Open House.

8 Staging Tips For An Open House

1. Remove the clutter.

Having a garage sale is out when removing clutter because the Open House is only a week away. You don’t want to stuff the garage or closets to the gills either. One solution is to rent an off-site storage facility or stack boxes neatly in a basement or crawlspace.

2. Stage each room.

The first thing to do is clean from top to bottom. Make sure windows and light fixtures shine and are in working order. If the room is crowded, put some furniture in the storage facility. Finally, pick a focal point that will attract buyers when they see the room. For example, the focal point of a bedroom is usually the bed, and for a music room, it’s the piano.

3. Use the rule of three.

First, remove everything from counters and table tops, including coffee tables and side tables. Then re-accessorize using the rule of three…using 3 items of varying heights. For example, on an end table you can place a lamp (high), a small plant (medium), and a book (low).

Continue reading →

Staging Tips For A South Central Vermont Open House

You are selling your South Central Vermont home and the first Open House only a week away. The house is filled with clutter and things you don’t want to throw away. But the clutter is not appealing to potential home buyers. What do you? Here are staging tips for an Open House.

8 Staging Tips For A South Central Vermont Open House

1. Remove the clutter.

Having a garage sale is out when removing clutter because the Open House is only a week away. You don’t want to stuff the garage or closets to the gills either. One solution is to rent an off-site storage facility or stack boxes neatly in a basement or crawlspace.

2. Stage each room.

The first thing to do is clean from top to bottom. Make sure windows and light fixtures shine and are in working order. If the room is crowded, put some furniture in the storage facility. Finally, pick a focal point that will attract buyers when they see the room. For example, the focal point of a bedroom is usually the bed, and for a music room, it’s the piano.

3. Use the rule of three.

First, remove everything from counters and table tops, including coffee tables and side tables. Then re-accessorize using the rule of three…using 3 items of varying heights. For example, on an end table you can place a lamp (high), a small plant (medium), and a book (low).

Continue reading →

Why Not Sell Your South Central Vermont Home In Winter?

Are the winter blahs setting in? How can you keep them at bay and infuse your life with a new found purpose? That’s easy–put your South Central Vermont home on the market. Although spring is traditionally considered the optimum time to sell a home, there are positive aspects to selling in the winter.

Buyer time constraints: A majority of corporate moves take place around January, and transferees need to find a home quickly. Parents are also anxious to get their children settled in a new school as soon as possible. By the way, some experts believe it is better for a child to move during the school year as opposed to the summer months. Starting a new school immediately upon arriving in a new location allows for an easier time of making friends and establishing new routines.

Tax credit extension: Now that the Home Buyer Tax Credit Act deadline has been extended to April 30th, many first-time buyers and “repeat buyers” are seriously looking to purchase a South Central Vermont home–and soon!

Motivated buyers: In addition to those mentioned above, other potential buyers are also out there looking. Those who have recently sold their own home or renters whose lease is ending are desperately in need of a new home. Remember, too, that house shoppers who brave cold temperatures, hard rains, and possible flooding can surely be considered serious buyers.

Availability of professionals: Because the winter season is not a particularly busy one in the field of real estate transactions, agents, mortgage brokers, and settlement attorneys will be more accessible to you and your buyer. Questions may well be answered more quickly, problems anticipated in advance or solved more calmly, and settlement times more flexible and accommodating.

Continue reading →

Invite Buyers Into Your South Central Vermont Home

Although the interior of your home may be lovely, you can’t use that fact to your advantage if potential buyers don’t come inside to see it. The majority of house shoppers are influenced by first impressions, and, according to the National Association of Realtors, nearly 50% of them make their decision about your South Central Vermont home before stepping through the door. Ensuring that prospective buyers will want to see more doesn’t have to be time-consuming or cost-prohibitive; there are numerous ways to strengthen your home’s curb appeal, to capture the interest of buyers, and most likely increase the selling value.

When selling your South Central Vermont home, appearances are important. The exterior of the house should be attractive and in good condition, and the well-maintained grounds should be pleasing to the eye. The first thing to do is to look at the exterior objectively. Assess the color scheme (siding, trim, brick, roof) and determine if the architectural features of your house are in keeping with the rest of the neighborhood.

Perhaps the easiest way to boost curb appeal is to clean.

Continue reading →