How to sell a house in the fall

The “Why” and “How” to Sell Your House in the Fall – Part 2

2 Main Points: Why you should sell your house in the fall, and How to sell your house in the fall.

This is part 2! In our last article we shared with you the reasons why you should put your house on the market this fall. Now that we’ve convinced you, here are some helpful tips on how to prepare your house to sell this fall!

Fall House Selling Tip #1 – Turn On The Lights Everywhere

Above all, bring in the light. When days get shorter, the sun sets lower in the horizon and casts wider shadows. Pull up the blinds, open the shutters, push back the drapes on every window. Turn on every light in the house, including appliance lights and closet lights. Brighten darker rooms with few windows by placing spotlights on the floor behind furniture, and for goodness sakes, turn off the TV.

Fall House Selling Tip #2 – Set The Mood For Fall Real Estate Musically

When thinking of autumn music, beyond “See You in September” and “California Dreamin’,” polka music and accordions come to mind. German beer fests are always held in October. But that doesn’t seem appropriate for autumn home selling unless you’re entertaining a frat house. A home seller is better off with Enya’s “The First of Autumn” or George Winston’s new age piano album “Autumn.”

Fall House Selling Tip #3 – Clean Up The Yard

Rake dead leaves and debris in your lawn. Don’t let overgrown vegetation block the windows or path to the entrance. Cutting bushes and tree limbs will let the sun inside and showcase the exterior of your home. Cut away summer vines and cut down dead flowers. Make the most of the autumn weather in the fall real estate market.

Fall House Selling Tip #4 – Create Autumn Curb Appeal

The most popular autumn flowers are chrysanthemums (or mums), and they bloom for a long time. I am also partial to marigolds for fall. Both mums and marigolds are available in yellow, which is my number one home selling color. Plant them in pots. Place pots on the steps and along the sidewalk. Accent with pumpkins or other types of squash.

Fall House Selling Tip #5 – Dress The Windows

Rain and wind from over the summer months can make your windows dusty and streaked by autumn. You might not notice smudges, but buyers will, if only on a subconscious level. To sell a home, your windows need to sparkle. Even though I am not selling my home, my cats routinely rub their little noses on the inside glass while walking along window ledges, so I need to wash my windows inside and out every autumn. Remove screens and spray them down.

Fall House Selling Tip #6 – Check The HVAC

You want the air inside your home to smell fresh. When was the last time you changed your furnace filter? You can buy 90-day furnace filters. Have the HVAC system checked before you need to turn on the heat. Besides, the buyer will ask a home inspector to look at your HVAC. If you discover problems with your furnace, it’s better to fix them before your home goes on the market.

Fall House Selling Tip #7 – Clean Out the Fireplace for the Fall Real Estate Market

Ah, nothing smells like autumn than smoke from a wood-burning fireplace. However, in some parts of the country, burning wood indoors or outdoors is outlawed. In Sacramento, we have certain days when we are not allowed to burn wood in the fireplace. If you have a gas fireplace, light it when buyers come through. If the fireplace is filled with cobwebs because it hasn’t been used for months, vacuum it out and wash it down. Some ​home stagers arrange knickknacks in the fireplace in place of wood logs.

Fall House Selling Tip #8 – Prepare Autumn Edibles

Speaking of autumn scents, you might set out freshly baked pumpkin cupcakes or simmer hot apple cider on the stove. Put a tray of cinnamon sticks on the counter, dotted with whole cloves. Prop open a cookbook to an autumn stew. Fill a bowl with crisp red apples.

Fall House Selling Tip #9 – Utilize Autumn Accent Colors

You don’t need to dump a lifeless sofa when you can accessorize its dullness with bright red, orange and/or golden yellow pillows. Toss a quilt or autumn-colored throw over a chair. After you’ve cleared away the clutter and depersonalized each room, bring a little bit of autumn hues to each room by placing bold-colored accent pieces in odd groupings such as 3’s and 5’s. Create an autumn centerpiece for the dining room table by arranging pine cones and nuts around orange candles, stick in a few leaves from the yard.

Fall House Selling Tip #10 – Offer Parting Treats to Potential Buyers

I like to leave a guest book by the door for people to leave comments about the home. Gathering buyer feedback can be crucial. And buyers will feel more compelled to leave you a note if you give them something in return, like tiny packets of candy corn or those snack-sized candy bars. Or you can go all-out and leave a tray of individually wrapped caramelized apples, tied with a curling ribbon.

Now that you know “why” and “how” to get things ready for your house to sell this fall, give us a call to get your house listed on the market!

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How to sell a house in the fall

The “Why” and “How” to Sell Your House in the Fall – Part 1

2 Main Points: Why you should sell your house in the fall, and How to sell your house in the fall.

In part one let’s discuss why the fall is an important opportunity to get your house on the market. We will follow this article up with part 2, and share some of the best tips to capitalize on the fall home selling market.

Reason #1 To Sell Your House In The Fall – More Flexibility For Improvements

Depending on where you live, spring and summer can be a much-needed break from a harsh winter, and your house could probably use a little TLC. So give yourself those warmer months for some home improvements.

Reason #2 To Sell Your House In The Fall – A More Serious Buyer Pool

Yes, the spring housing market is sure to bring out buyers, but plenty of folks may hold off on making an offer. With more homes to choose from, they can afford to be picky, and that could extend their search by months. Come September, though, serious buyers will be feeling the pressure to make their move before the holiday season or bad weather hits. That’s where you come in.

Reason #3 To Sell Your House In The Fall – Less Competition

Post-summer home buyers not only have the stress of the holiday season looming overhead, but their options are shrinking. Many sellers rush to close by September, so fortunately you’ll be competing in a much smaller market. That can be a powerful bargaining chip to help you close before the end of the year.

Reason #4 To Sell Your House In The Fall – Different Buyer Demographics

While families are more likely to make their move in the spring, millennials and empty-nesters usually swoop in a bit later in the year. They’re not the only ones, either: to avoid higher “on season” real estate rates, employers who need to relocate their workers often wait for the fall, when the market tends to cool down. These out-of-towners will probably need to get through the process quickly, too, which could mean a relatively speedy closing.

So now you understand the “why” behind selling in the fall, come back and read part 2 of this article and learn the “how”!

Need to save money with home improvements? Click Here and learn how!

Save money with the simple

One of the most frustrating things is having to call a service company. Then, their repair takes 5 minutes, but you pay $130? They tell you, ” Oh, it was a simple fix.” In this article we will look at some simple money-saving repairs you can make at home.

Save money with the simple

  • Running toilet – Most plumbing companies will charge a service fee between $80 and up to $130 just to come to your house! Nine times out of ten, a toilet that will randomly turn on and then turn off, has a faulty flapper. The flapper is the rubber seal that lifts when you flush, emptying the tank into the bowl. When the flapper isn’t sealing properly, water will leak from the tank into the bowl. As it falls below the fill level, it will trip the fill valve float, turning on the water to fill back up again. A standard flapper is around $5 and takes about 2 minuets to install, saving you lots of money!
  • Garbage Disposal – Most disposals come with a disposal wrench that fits into the bottom to manually turn it when it jambs. If your disposal is humming, this is likely your problem. If it does nothing or the chamber spins freely, check the red reset button underneath before calling a plumber.
  • Lock Trouble – Is the deadbolt hard to move with the key? Try to spray the lock and key with some WD40. Work the key back and forth in the lock and it should loosen right up!

These are just a few simple tips that you can help you to save big bucks on your home, weather you are selling, a new homeowner, or you’ve been there a while.

How to avoid a money pit

Unless you’re in the business of flipping houses, you don’t want to buy a money pit! In this article, we will look at some of the major issues of  a house to consider before your purchase.

How to avoid a money pit

The worst thing in the world is to buy something, only to find that it will cost you much more money than you’ve already spent. In this article we are going to look at a few of the major cost issues of a house to be aware of before your purchase.

  • Age – Was it built before JFK was president? The older the home, the more the upkeep and maintenance costs. Remember, when you’re excited about those “antique” fixtures and charm, that just means they are old! The older it is, the closer to replacement.
  • Plumbing – Be mindful of the plumbing condition. Are the drain pipes cast iron, do you see signs of leaking, how old is the water heater? Did you know the life expectancy of a solder joint in a copper water line is at least 50 years with good water condition?
  • Heating and Cooling – Replacing a furnace or A/C unit will cost thousands of dollars! If you are old enough to buy a home and they are older than you, it’s time to replace them.
  • Electrical – Electrical code has changed a lot since the 1970s! If  you notice an old breaker box, or the house is full of two prong, ungrounded outlets, an update is needed.
  • Foundational – Cracks in the foundation can lead to structural issues and even water damage. This is a major cost, and one to consider when purchasing a home.

Buying a house is a huge decision! Make sure you are armed with enough information so you don’t get caught in a money pit!

OKC Realtors: Tips for first time home buyers

OKC Realtors: Handy tips for the first time home buyer

Buying a home can be a lengthy process. Some even find it scary. It takes a large amount of money and resources to buy a home and getting a bad deal can leave you stuck in bad way for years, even decades. OKC Realtors has some tips for the first time home buyer to make sure you get the best deal possible.

Save for a down payment early: The common rule for a down payment on a house is 20%. But most lenders will let you buy a house with a down payment with a little as 3% down. But these smaller down payments often mean larger higher costs overall and having to buy private mortgage insurance. Start saving early so you can keep your options on the down payment open.

Check your Credit (But not too much): When your getting approved for a loan, your credit will be one of the key factors in determining if your approved or not. It also helps determine interest rates on these loans. So be sure to check it before applying for a loan. Dispute any errors in your credit report and see if you can raise your score by paying off outstanding debts. It’s important to not obsessively check your credit score though, as multiple checks can lower your credit score. Once or twice shouldn’t hurt though.

Pause any new Credit activity: Any time you open a new account, whether it be for a new car loan or a credit card, the lender will check your credit score. This can actually temporarily lower your credit score. So be sure to stop any new credit activity before you start looking for a house.

If your looking for a new home, let the experienced realtors at Metro First Realty, OKC Realtors, help you find the perfect home.

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OKC Realtors: Does your lawn affect your home value?

OKC Realtors: How does your lawn affect your property value?

If you’re looking to sell your home, you might know to update the appliances, fix the fence, and touch up the paint job among other things. But have you ever considered your lawn? Have a look at your lawn now, how is it? Is it clean cut or wild? Are there weeds you haven’t gotten around to exterminating yet? Are there any flowers in your garden? If your lawn is a mess it can actually affect the value of the home it’s in front of. OKC Realtors explains how.

Keeping your lawn in top shape will help you with one of the most important aspects of a home, the first impression. If someone is looking at homes a nice, well-kept lawn will help differentiate you from the other homes the buyer is looking at. If two homes have equal value, the one with the nicer lawn will leave a nicer first impression. In many cases, a well-kept lawn can actually raise the dollar value of your home!

Similarly, leaving a good first impression also does wonders to set expectations for the buyer. This plays of what psychologists call The Halo Effect, where characteristic influences a person’s opinion of all other characteristics related to it. If you’ve got a well-kept lawn, a potential buyer will think more highly of your home because of the halo effect. If your lawn is on the wild side though, the opposite will be true regardless if your house is spotless and up to date.

The lawn is an important part of the home even though it exists outside it. Taking the time to care for and groom your lawn can pay massive dividends when you decide to sell. If you are looking to sell, let Metro First Realty, OKC Realtors, help you find the perfect home.

OKC Realtors

OKC Realtors: The most vulnerable parts of your house Pt. 2

OKC Realtors has some more home weak points and how you can strengthen them

Last time OKC Realtors went over some security weak points in homes, this time we’ll go over a few more.

Windows: Windows are vulnerable because it’s easy to forget about them as a homeowner. Often times we leave them open during hotter months or during nice days to let some natural air in. Sometimes, we can forget to close them leaving an easy entrance for an opportunistic burglar.  In older homes, the glass can become weak and brittle with age making it easy for a burglar to smash through. Older windows can also have weaker locks that can be easily forced. In order to strengthen windows, maintain them with regular repairs and replace old windows as soon as possible. If you can’t replace old windows for whatever reason, install new window locks that can be seen from the outside. These locks will slow down and potentially even stop a would be burglar.

Side Yards: Side and back entrances are a favorite of burglars. Homes next to alleyways can be especially vulnerable as these features grant easy, hidden access to your home. There are a few ways you can help make these easy entrances a little less enticing. First of all, installing stronger locks on your back entrances will help deter burglars. Building a fence, if possible, is also another great way to limit access. Installing motion activated floodlights can also help deter would be criminals. A cheap way to deter burglars is to install some fake security cameras. Just having them there will deter some burglars, it doesn’t matter if they work or not.

Keeping your home safe is one of the biggest responsibilities as a homeowner, and now you’re a little better prepared to keep you and your family safe. If your in the home for a new home give Metro First Realty, OKC Realtors, a call today at 405-242-4004.

OKC Realtors

OKC Realtors: The most vulnerable parts of your house

OKC Realtors: What parts of your house are most vulnerable to break-ins

We all want to make sure our homes are as safe and secure from burglars as possible. But which parts of our home are most likely to be targeted by a burglar? OKC Realtors has some answers and some DIY tricks to help strengthen these weak points in your home.

The Front Door: It might seem paradoxical at first, a burglar trying to remain hidden busting into your home right through the front door. Sadly however, that’s how many choose to do it. Many homes have features that can help hide a burglar as they break into your home. recessed doorways, nearby trees, and potted plants can all hide a smart burglar just long enough to get into your home. The key here is to make your front door more visible. Lights are the best way to do this. Painting the door a bright color is another way to make it less appealing to burglars. “Beware Dog” signs and stickers can also deter some burglars not wishing to get chomped.

Specialty Doors: By specialty doors we mean things like sliding glass doors and French doors. These can be a beautiful addition to any home, but they are also particularly vulnerable to burglars. One of the many small glass panes on a French door can be busted open and the lock undone. Sliding doors might have tougher glass, but they can be undone with something as simple as a screwdriver. These doors can be strengthened in a couple of ways. When installing locks on French doors, make sure the locks are at least 36 inches away from the glass panes. For sliding doors, a simple, sturdy rod placed in the track can stop a burglar in their tracks.

These are just a couple of ways you can make your home burglar proof. If your in the market for a new home, give Metro First Realty, OKC Realtors, a call today at 405-242-4004.

 

OKC Realtors

OKC Realtors: Is a Fixer-Upper for you?

OKC Realtors: Should you buy that fixer-upper?

It can seem romantic, a beat-up old house sitting in a quaint neighborhood. You eye it while house-hunting and get an idea. You’ll buy this old, run-down house and renovate it to look better than new! And it’ll be cheaper than buying a new home! Well, it might be! But there are some factors to consider. If you want it for some of the reasons below, then OKC Realtors says goes for it!

Because it’s a bargain: The obvious reason you want to but a fixer-upper is that it’s a bargain. Fixer-Uppers are often cheaper than buying a new home. But, as the name suggests, it needs work. Before you buy, make sure the home’s needed repairs aren’t going to be too expensive. Having good DIY skills also helps keeps these costs down. Speaking of DIY

Because you want a DIY project: Doin many of the repairs yourself not only keeps costs down, but it can be a great way to add character to you home and make it truly yours. Some people love the challenge and freedom that comes with doing these repairs and renovations. If your DIY skills are not as good as they could be, you’ll have to pay for more professional help which may drive up the price of this bargain fixer-upper.

You want to flip the house for profit: Buy low, sell high, some of the oldest advice you can get. Buying a fixer upper can be one of the easiest ways to make a profit on a house. Assuming you can do most of the renovations your self and the house itself hasn’t degraded too much, buying a fixer-upper can be a really solid investment.

If your looking for a home in the OKC area, give Metro First Realty, OKC Realtors, today at 405-242-4004!

OKC Realtors

OKC Realtors: Are foreclosures cheaper?

OKC Realtors: Is it really cheaper to buy a foreclosed home?

Buying a home is all about balancing the perfect set of features with price. This might make foreclosed home look more attractive as common wisdom says they’re cheaper, but are they? Well, OKC Realtors is here to set the record straight.

According to most data, it is actually cheaper more often than not to buy a foreclosed home. Depending on where you buy the home, it may be anywhere between 18 to 59% cheaper than surrounding homes. And while this initial price reduction might make the home seem like a steal, there are a few things to consider when buying a foreclosed home.

Foreclosed homes often show signs of stress and neglect. People who get behind on payments often stop taking care of the home as well. The previous tenants may have also become upset at losing their home and done damage to the home on there way out. Banks are not likely to fix these damages either. The other thing to keep in mind is who owns the home in the case of a foreclosure. Unlike other homes, foreclosed homes are owned by a bank. Homeowners will try to make small improvements to help increase the value of their home. Banks are usually just trying to recoup losses on a foreclosed home and are less likely to make these improvements as a homeowner will. Before you buy a foreclosed home, make sure that it hasn’t deteriorated to the point that it’s not worth the price cut to make it livable. The home may be cheaper up front, but if the home has been left idle long enough, it might cost more to renovate the home than to just buy a new home!

If your in the market for a new home, give Metro First Realty, OKC Realtors, a call today at 405-242-4004!