Friday, November 1, 2019

Getting Ready To Put Your House On The Market


MID-LAND REALTORS is striving to be your primary source for REAL ESTATE information in the Great Lakes Bay Region of Michigan. However, a lot of what will be posted here will apply throughout the United States.

We are also aware that what you need will be different depending on where you are in the process – buying, selling, renting, up-sizing, downsizing, landlord or property management. With that being said, we want to talk about getting your house ready to sale.

Everyone wants to have their house sale at or above full price and have that offer on the first day. However, there is no way to guarantee that will happen every time. 

There are some things you can do to help it along, that cost little to no money. 

  1. Declutter, declutter, declutter: You want to make the house looks as big as possible.
  2. De-personalize: Now, I am not saying to take everything down. You are still going to live there. So, let’s still make it home.
  3. Clean: Wipe the door jams, the light switches, the windowsills and such. This is the first thing people will see.
  4. Lightbulbs: Replace burnt out ones, make sure all the light bulbs in a fixture are the same type (incandescent, led or cfl) and color style (cool blue vs warm yellow).

There are some things that cost a little bit to do and a lot if you deferred it too long. 

  1. Front Door: Clean it and paint it needed. If in very bad condition, replace.
  2. Screens: Clean and repair.
  3. Flower Beds: Depending on the time of the year, remove weeds, deadheads and fertilize. Fall time clean out and make ready of spring. Try to remember to take pictures of it at its best.
  4. Side walks and driveway: remove the weeds growing in the cracks. If it is asphalt then fill and seal or resurface, if in bad condition.
  5. Windows: Scrap, chalk and seal.
  6. Bathtubs and showers: Clean the grout. In front of the tub, the walls, and corners. If any is missing, replace.

There are many sites for more to do. However, the most important thing to remember is to do it right. This is especially true with paint; you don’t want to mix oil based and latex paint or paint over a patch that has not been prepared correctly. 

We here at MID-LAND REALTORS would love the opportunity to help you sell your house and find you your next home. Let us show you some great homes.

Happy Buying

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Leaving Your Home Vacant


MID-LAND REALTORS is striving to be your primary source for REAL ESTATE information in the Great Lakes Bay Region of Michigan. However, a lot of what will be posted here will apply throughout the United States.

We are also aware that what you need will be different depending on where you are in the process – buying, selling, renting, up-sizing, downsizing, landlord or property management. With that being said, we want to talk about leaving your home vacant.

What should I consider when moving from my current home before it sells?  Nine tips to help your home remain marketable...
  1. Leave behind the following supplies so your Realtor or caregiver can keep it clean: broom/dustpan, snow shovel, rug or tray for shoes by entrance, toilet paper, paper towel, window cleaner and all-purpose cleaner.  As your Realtor, I’m not planning to shovel your driveway or clean your windows but I’d like to do what I can to help during open houses, etc.—often the walkway needs a quick shovel or something needs attention inside.
  2. Consider shutting the water off and having a professional winterize the pipes if winter is approaching. Keep in mind this will likely need to be reversed for buyer’s home inspection. 
  3. Set heat in the winter to 55-58 degrees, warm enough so there will not a problem should the electric go out.
  4. If you are not going to leave the fridge running, make sure you leave the door open to avoid funky odors.   A couple of hook-like refrigerator magnets will keep the doors from closing.  
  5. Leave your garage door openers, extra keys, manuals and other items staying with the house in a large envelope in a kitchen drawer or a safe place. 
  6. Consider a lamp on a timer for safety or if a room does not have an overhead light.  Your home may be shown in the evening, so make it inviting.
  7. A dehumidifier should be left on in the basement and should be attached to a hose for draining.
  8. Remember to arrange for outside care of your home.  Keeping walkways clear is helpful to avoid injuries and make showings pleasant to potential buyers.  
  9. Ideally you should have someone who can occasionally monitor your house in addition to your Realtor.  


We here at MID-LAND REALTORS would love the opportunity to help you sell your house and find you your next home. Let us show you some great homes.

Happy Buying

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Fall


MID-LAND REALTORS is striving to be your primary source for REAL ESTATE information in the Great Lakes Bay Region of Michigan. However, a lot of what will be posted here will apply throughout the United States.

We are also aware that what you need will be different depending on where you are in the process – buying, selling, renting, up-sizing, downsizing, landlord or property management. With that being said, we want to talk about Fall.

Besides being my favorite season, Fall leads us to bon fires, staying home, cuddly by the fireplace and snuggling under a blanket to read a great book or binge watch TV for 4 months (9 in Midland, MI). There are some things you should do to your home inside and outside before it gets too cold. This is NOT an inclusive list but some top of the mind.
  • Clean the Gutters
    • Probably twice
  • Place a board secured with a brick or big stone on top of the A/C unit
    • Do NOT cover the whole unit with plastic. This will cause the unit to rust from the moisture over the winter.
    • All you really need to do is save the fan blades from snow and ice.
  • The yard and gardens
    • Rake the yard - depending on how many trees in your yard and more importantly your neighbors, you will need to complete this probably twice. 
    • For the health of your yard, a light layer of leaves are good but thick moldy, musty layers can cause moss and mold like issues.
    • If you have access to a lawn aerator, this is a good time to use it. Well after you rake up the leaves.
    • Removing dried plant leaves is a good thing for your plants to be successful in the spring. I only say this because my plants grow by the survive of the fittest and neglect methods and they come back every year and this is my main contribution to them.
    • Leave a light layer of leaves over your plants 
    • Properly store lawn mowers, blowers and other equipment

Here are a few other websites for more ideas:


We here at MID-LAND REALTORS would love the opportunity to help you sell your house and find you your next home. Let us show you some great homes.

Happy Buying

Thursday, August 1, 2019

Zestimate


MID-LAND REALTORS is striving to be your primary source for REAL ESTATE information in the Great Lakes Bay Region of Michigan. However, a lot of what will be posted here will apply throughout the United States.
We are also aware that what you need will be different depending on where you are in the process – buying, selling, renting, up-sizing, downsizing, landlord or property management. With that being said, we want to talk about Zestimate.
Okay, let’s talk about the elephant in the living room and why REALTOR’S don’t like Zillow. Most REALTOR’S will send you to their professional website or their offices or REALTOR.com and roll their eyes at Zillow. While some of it is Zillow giving away information to the customer for free but making the agent pay heavily to get their information on the site. The big reason for our distrust is Zestimate. Maybe if we lived on the East Coast or West Coast of the US it would be more accurate but here in the Great Lakes Bay Region, it can be really off. You might be saying that will 1 to 5% off is no big deal. I recently worked on a Comparable Market Analysis (CMA) for a piece of vacant land. One of the comparable properties I was using sold for $22,000 in Sanford. Zillow’s Zestimate said it should have sold for $256,243 (off by 1064.7%). That is more than a little off. Now on the REALTOR.com website, the same property said it should have sold for $25,000.
Ok, ok, ok I can hear you, well that’s one. I had another CMA for a house in Gladwin county. One of the properties sold for $77,000 and Zestimate said it should have sold for $125,883 (off by 63.5%).

Even on my own home, Zillow says $164,829 and REALTOR.com says $150,300. Another site called Homesnap.com, said it was worth $181,000.

This is why you should use a REALTOR in your local area. They know what the local market is doing right then, they know more about the trends and will give you a very good snapshot of the houses like yours.

Here is your chance to go to the websites and check your home.


We here at MID-LAND REALTORS would love the opportunity to help you sell your house and find you your next home. Let us show you some great homes.

Happy Buying

Monday, July 1, 2019

What NOT to do when you are waiting for your closing.


MID-LAND REALTORS is striving to be your primary source for REAL ESTATE information in the Great Lakes Bay Region of Michigan. However, a lot of what will be posted here will apply throughout the United States.

We are also aware that what you need will be different depending on where you are in the process – buying, selling, renting, up-sizing, downsizing, landlord or property management. With that being said, we want to talk about what not to do when waiting.

So, CONGRATULATIONS you found the perfect house, got an accepted offer, past the home inspection with flying colors. Now you are waiting for those three magically words from the lender, CLEAR TO CLOSE! That is music to you and your REALTOR’S ears. However, until you hear that things can happen. Something happens and the lender gets slowed down or ill and can not finish in 45 days. Some sort of blemish or cloud (why they don’t say error, I don’t know) is found in the title. 

There is plenty for you do to during this time.
  • Pack
  • Plan the layout of your furniture in the new house
  • Pick out color swatches at the paint store
  • Get your home insurance

There is also plenty for you to NOT do
  • Do NOT do anything that can add an inquiry on your credit report
  • Do NOT sell a vehicle
  • Do NOT buy a vehicle
  • Do NOT buy appliances
  • Do NOT have a big deposit made into your account that cannot be accounted for.
  • Do NOT buy recreational vehicles including boats, jet skis, and snowmobiles.

All of these can change your credit score and your debt to income ratio. And yes, even adding money to your account. 


We here at MID-LAND REALTORS would love the opportunity to help you sell your house and find you your next home. Let us show you some great homes.

Happy Buying

Saturday, June 1, 2019

HOME VALUE (a.k.a. It now the time to sell my home)


MID-LAND REALTORS is striving to be your primary source for REAL ESTATE information in the Great Lakes Bay Region of Michigan. However, a lot of what will be posted here will apply throughout the United States.

We are also aware that what you need will be different depending on where you are in the process – buying, selling, renting, up-sizing, downsizing, landlord or property management. With that being said, we want to talk about Home Value.

A lot of pieces go into determining a house’s value. Some include:
  • City or Country
  • Ranch, two-story or multi-level
  • 3 bedrooms, 4 bedrooms or different
  • 1 full bathroom or 2 full bathrooms
  • Basement or crawl space

And the list goes on. Notice, I have not even mentioned the condition of the house or the d├ęcor.

You can use the link below to have an estimation of your home sent to you. This will use homes in your neighborhood for comparison.


We here at MID-LAND REALTORS would love the opportunity to help you sell your house and find you your next home. Let us show you some great homes.

Happy Buying

Saturday, December 1, 2018

WINTER HOME SAFETY

MID-LAND REALTORS is striving to be your primary source for REAL ESTATE information in the Great Lakes Bay Region of Michigan. However, a lot of what will be posted here will apply throughout the United States.

We are also aware that what you need will be different depending on where you are in the process – buying, selling, renting, up-sizing, downsizing, landlord or property management. With that being said, we want to talk about Winter Home Safety.

Now that we have hit the cooler to colder temps and you find yourself staying home longer each night, I would like to talk about some home safety tips. This is not in order of importance or all-inclusive by any means. It is meant to get you thinking of things to look at. 

  • Look at are your fire, smoke, carbon dioxide detectors. Make sure they all have batteries! Then change then at least annually, preferably change them when the time changes. It is a small price to pay for a vital piece of safety.
  • Change your furnace filters. If they are the small 1inch one, monthly is best. If they are the 4 inches and bigger, change when the filter is at least 2/3 dirty.
  • Check pilot lights on gas fireplaces.
  • Check the dampers on fireplaces.
  • Maintain the area around your furnace intake and exhaust. If these get full of ice of an animal makes a nest, at best your furnace efficiency will go down. Worse case is carbon dioxide poisoning and die.

For more information on other ways to prepare your home for winter visits the sites below:






We’re here at MID-LAND REALTORS would love the opportunity to help you sell your house and find you your next home. Let us show you some great homes.


Happy Buying!