Home Selling Tips For Fall!

Just because the hot hot hot real estate market of Summer is over and people are focusing on school and the coming holidays doesn’t mean the chance to sell your home is gone too!

No! Truth be told, these Autumn months are often when people turn towards the warm thoughts of home even more, making it a great time to sell!

To help you decide if selling your home this Fall is the right time we’ve put together some great things to consider!

There’s Less Inventory
Traditionally there is less inventory in the cooler months, this means buyers will be more keenly interested in what offerings do come available – making it a good time to list!

Buyers Are Motivated
Less inventory, a timeline of potential weather changes and holidays…all these things motivate buyers to find a home and get in it before the snow flies. Despite what some may think all of these things factor in to make Fall a great time to sell!

Fall Colors Make Everyone Look Good
Beautiful colors, the fabulous sunsets for contrast – Fall really can make things look great! Take advantage, be sure to keep your yard neat and include seasonal touches of color in your decorating. A warm home that smells of sweet apple spice never hurts either!

Don’t think that just because Summer is over that you can’t sell! Working with an experienced real estate professional can make all the difference no matter what time of year it is – find out, get in touch!

Hot Home Trend: Kitchen Backsplash

Staying up on all the latest hot home decorating trends? Plugged into the HGTV, TLC? Love the Flip or Flop shows?

Then you have got to know about Kitchen Backsplashes!

That’s right say it with me: Back Splash! And just like it’s name they’re making a big impact on the home styling scene.

It’s easy to see why too! Your kitchen is one of the prime focal points of your home, some call it the heart of the home even, so it’s no wonder that it is also one of the best places to add a little personality beyond functionality.

Sure, a backsplash protects the wall behind the stove, keeps things tidy, and generally makes what accidents that do pop all over much easier to clean up, but beyond that they can really add a much needed burst of inspiration to what can sometimes be an otherwise utilitarian space.

There are any number of amazing tile options from plain to wild that you can use to dress up your space. Geometric patterns are popular, and bright pops of color are all the rage; patterns like Azulejo are timeless.

We love being able to offer these tips and insights to help you enjoy your home long after the paperwork is signed! We hope that you will rely on us for years to come and count on us as a trusted community resource to assist you whenever you have home questions.

Keep Your Home Cool This Summer!

realtors stay coolNo doubt about it, for most of the country Summer time is definitely here!

This is certainly true for those of us in the Northwest; while everyone knows some of the usual ways to cool down there’s a few things you can do to keep your house cool this Summer without cranking up the air and that will help keep the power bill down too.

Take a look at these helpful hint to keep you down to a slow sizzle this Summer!

Close Doors
If you have rooms in your home that are largely unoccupied for long periods during the day close the doors. By closing off sections of your house you can help keep cool air inside of the individual rooms easier, especially during the hottest parts of the day.

Change Your Fan Direction
Which way is your fan spinning? Believe it or not it makes a huge difference! In Winter it’s good to use your ceiling fans to pull warm air up, but in Summer turn off the fan and flip the little switch to reverse direction so it runs counter-clockwise – this forces air downwards providing a direct skin cooling effect.

Cool Yourself
It’s a lot more cost effective to cool yourself off than to try to cool down the entire house! Consider dressing lighter, and drinking cool drinks (including plain old water!) to stay hydrated. This will help you feel cooler even if the house is warm.

Close the Curtains
Close up the curtains, especially if you have a sunny facing window or French doors as heat will penetrate your home and cause it to run hotter. Better yet, if possible get thicker black out curtains. Windows and glass surfaces are one of the biggest places where heat will enter your home.

There are plenty of ways to keep your cool! Hopefully these ideas will get you started. Long term things you may also consider include planting shade trees, or adding patio mist systems. Your home should be a place you love living in, get in touch today to find out how we can help make that happen!

Questions to Ask Before You Sell

Selling your home can be one of the biggest decisions you’ll make as a homeowner.

Whether it’s due to work relocation, or just that you’ve looked around and decided it’s time for a change, selling your home is something you will want to put some real thought into before jumping in with both feet.

Here are some good things to questions to ask your chosen real estate agent to help make your move a success!

What Is The Last Home You Sold?
Track record counts. While it’s fine to go with a new agent you do want to make sure your needs are taken care of. A good way to protect your own interests is to be sure to work with an agent who has a record of proven results. Ask them about the last home they sold for good insight!

What Is My Home Worth?
Knowing the market is key so you don’t undersell your property or over-price yourself into a long term holding pattern. Before you jump on Zillow or some other automated CMA tool talk to a real live agent – they will know far more about your local market and can give you a much more accurate property assessment.

How Long Will It Take?
Your agent may not be able to give you an exact date, but don’t be discouraged! They will know the market well enough to be able to predict a general timeline and also give references from some of their previous clients.

What Will An Agent Do?
You’ve sold your own car. You’ve sold stuff at a garage sale. Why not sell your own home? What does an agent really do, anyway? Well, you’ll be glad to know a qualified agent will do a lot more than just help shuffle paperwork! A trusted REALTOR will be there to assist with any questions, market your property, and handle any problem items that might arise. Your real estate agent is without a doubt your most valuable asset during a sale.

Find out what working with a professional is really worth – get in touch!! We’ll be there all along the way to help – let’s go find your dream home today!

Get Your Home Ready For Spring!

home buyer helpThe rains have come and the wind is blowing the fresh smells of a new season across the land…and that means Spring cleaning!

Yay. Right? Nobody looks forward to the work part of the process but everything sure is nice when it’s done and you can sit back and breathe in that crisp clean house smell.

We’ve put together a few quick but powerful tips to help you get ready for Spring without taking the spring out of your step!

Dust Off The A/C
Seasons change fast, and if you have central air it won’t be long before you’ll be wanting to turn it on to cool down. It’s a good idea to give the unit outside a good hose down and inspect it for any damage. Go ahead and change those air filters and turn the system on to make sure everything sounds right.

Do the Junkmail Jump
It’s a good time to review all those subscription and junk mail ads hitting the mailbox. Unsubscribing may not be the way you want to spend your Saturday but by the end of the year when the sales ads are really hitting you’ll be glad you did. It’s not a bad idea to take a look at your online subscriptions and bills in general as well…are there some things you’re paying for that you’re not even using? Cut them out!

Clean the Grill!
This one brings it’s own reward really. For many of us grilling season never really stopped so this may just be a matter of some light brushing off, but for everyone else go ahead and break out the wire brush and get things looking clean. Dump out old ashes and maybe even fire up a few burgers after you’re done – just to make sure it’s still “good”.

Brave The Deep Clean
Now is the time. Before Summer sports and the year really gets rolling, Spring is often the best time to go beyond your normal maintenance cleaning and go for the deep grime. Bleach the grout, wash down the baseboards, and do all the little things that make a big difference.

A good real estate agent wants to help long after the paper work is signed and helping you take care of the home you’re living in is just one part of that. If you’re looking for a home, or even looking to sell the home you’re in just get in touch!

Home Buyers: What You Should Really Look For!

real estate websitesThere are a million and one details that go into choosing the right home, and even if this is your first home you likely have some idea about the features you want – but how well do those match with what your actual needs are? Just the process of buying can be overwhelming, so it can be easy to overlook important details, especially if you see “the one” house you absolutely love.

We’ve put together some helpful tips you may want to consider before deciding the first home you find is the one for you.

More Than The Look
The outside of your home makes up a big part of it’s value and also the longevity of your house. While shutters, and paint, and all of those things are important it’s also important to consider what direction the house faces (especially if you live in cold climates), as well as other exterior factors like: any visible cracks in the foundation or drive, what is around your home, available parking, and homeowners association restrictions.

Location!
It’s more than a real estate adage. Location matters! It would be terrible to find the perfect house online only to realize on visiting it that you’re in front of the sewage treatment plant, or in a high crime area. Other important factors include proximity to shopping, work, and school.

What’s Inside Matters
What’s inside does count! Look beyond your basic wants from the home however and be sure to keep an eye out for things like available power plugs, available storage, and room size to make sure that you’ll have plenty of space to grow your dreams in.

A lot more than just the number of beds and baths goes into picking the right place! Trust your real estate agent to help you find the home that suits your wants as well as your needs and you can’t go wrong.

Before You Move Consider This!

idaho realtor websitesMaking a move can be one of the most stressful things you can do, and that goes double if you’re selling and buying a home as part of that process.

A new town can be disorienting, and not having your usual network of support to rely on can leave you feeling really boggled. There are countless details to remember and take care of, but before all of that there are a few crucial things to ask yourself before you even start thinking about a move.

We’ve put together a list to help you tackle these tasks with ease!

What Is The Market Doing?
Buying a home in a market on the rise is a good idea, whereas buying in a down trend may not be so wise. While no one short of a psychic can tell you what the market will do for sure, a qualified REALTOR® can show you trends so that you can make a decision from an informed standpoint.

Who Do You Know?
Speaking of a support network! A small group of people you can call on in times of need is more valuable than can be expressed. Whether it’s asking about where to find a good place to eat, or needing someone to puppy-sit, it really helps to have some local people you can count on.

Where to Work?
You may be relocating for your job so this might not be a big concern, but if you’re moving for any other reason you’ll almost definitely need income. Research the area online and put out some resumes before you’re even in the area, it never hurts to plan ahead.

How is the Weather?
Unless you’re snowbirding it you will be spending a lot of time in the climate you’re moving to, so it’s important to be prepared for the weather. If you get cold when it dips below 70 Alaska may not be the place for you! Study up on trends, weather hazards like tornadoes, and other elements that may impact your enjoyment of your new home.

These are all good ideas for things to think about when searching for a new place to live. In some cases you may not have much choice if you’re having to relocate for work or family, but with a little planning the move will be much easier. Be sure to talk with a qualified real estate professional too, as they will know the area and can help you get oriented quickly!

Get Your Home Ready For Travel

real estate websitesNo, your house isn’t going anywhere! Well, hopefully not anyway…and that’s kind of the whole point.

With the holidays coming up Winter is one of the hottest travel times of year; it’s likely for many that you will be off to see friends or family and leaving your homes for at least a few days.

It’s important to make sure everything at home is just as ready for your time away as your suitcase, so we’ve put together some tips to help you be prepared!

Set Your Temp
If you’re not going to be home and don’t have pets or plants to worry about consider setting your thermostat lower to save on energy costs. In Winter months most suggest at least 55 degrees to keep pipes from bursting, and in Summer most recommend 80 degrees. If possible you can even buy a smart thermostat you can control from your phone!

Turn Off Water
If you’re going to be gone for any extended period it’s a good idea to turn off your water to avoid coming home to a flood of troubles.  You’ll need to do this via the main water line of your home; then let the faucets run until dry before you leave. It’s a fairly easy thing to do that can really help save you a ton of headaches.

Clean The Fridge
It’s not the first thing to come to mind when leaving to go on vacation, but while you’re out soaking in the sun those groceries are still at home going bad! If you’re going to be gone for an extended time you really should check the dates on things like milk and fruit so that you won’t come home to a real stinky situation.

Last Minute Tips…
If you have a trusted friend or neighbor have them stop by while you’re away to check on things – even if it’s just to drive by and take a look from the outside. You may also want to put a pause on posting all those beautiful sunsets until you get back: criminals may see posts on social media and see you aren’t home. Your home is one of your most valuable assets, be sure to keep it safe while you are away from it!

Fall Home Maintenance List!

fall real estateWasn’t it just Summer…like, last week?

We thought so too! But whether you’re ready for the weather or not Fall is quickly on it’s way.

While most people get excited thinking about cooler temperatures, cozy sweaters, and pumpkin spice lattes, homeowners know that the change of seasons also means new things to take care of around the house.

To help make sure you don’t miss any important Fall home maintenance items we’ve put together this quick list of important tasks to remember!

Disconnect The Hose
Easy to do, easy to forget! You don’t want to be three months into Winter when you remember to take the hose off the house. This can lead to frozen pipes and expensive repairs!

Do The Gutters
You might save this until after the leaves fall, but it’s not a bad idea to take a look now before your gutters start getting heavy use. Go ahead and clear out anything that’s gotten in there over the Summer so you’re ready for big leaf season!

Wash The House
A good pressure wash will make your house look great – you won’t believe the difference! It’s a good idea to do this now as once the cooler months come it’s easy to overlook outside maintenance and this might be the last chance you get to get it clean.

Look At The Roof
It’s a good time to take a look at the roof. Make sure all your shingles are in place and in good repair. There’s nothing worse than being in the middle of Winter and having a leaky roof – or worse yet, not finding out about it until after it’s frozen in Spring.

A little preventive action goes a long way; taking care of some of these simple items around the house before the snow flies can lead to a less stressful Winter season. Have questions? Glad to talk about home care, real estate, and getting ready for the cold months ahead!

Tips to Beat Home Buying Stress

home buying stressNo doubt about it buying a home is a pretty big deal, one of the biggest deals most of us will make during our lifetimes in fact, but there’s no reason it has to overwhelm you with stress.

You will get through it, and with the help of your loved ones and a qualified professional or two, you’ll find there are a lot fewer things to stress about than you’re likely worried over. To help you keep the stress down during buying we’ve put together these tips!

Know What You Want
Easier said than done but having some idea of the type of home, general area you want to live in, or even just the “must-have” items for your new place is key to finding it. Communicate these desires to your agent and go from there.

Listen To Your Agent
Hey, you hired them for a reason! And while they are definitely there to help facilitate your needs one of the reasons you are working with them is because they know real estate on a whole other level. A good agent will know about the area, about potential pitfalls, and can help you find the place where your dreams meet availability.

Talk It Out
The best way to deal with stress sometimes is just to talk it out. Talk to your friends, talk to your family, and especially talk to your agent. They are in your corner and by communicating effectively when you have thoughts or especially concerns you make everyone’s job easier.

Start Early
The best way to avoid stress is not to rush into things. In some cases you may have to move for work or family reasons and the timing may not be your own. Otherwise however, buying a home is definitely something to take at pace. Start saving before you even start looking if you can, go ahead and get familiar with the area, and start looking for the right real estate agent for you.

Getting a home inspection, being patient, accepting compromise…these are all other things that will be part of the process. Just take it one step at a time. The best place to start is to find an agent who understands your needs, knows the market, and who is also a good fit for you personally. Get in touch if you have any other questions!