Staging Your Home For a Quicker Sale and More Money

Staging your home is Marketing 101. You want your house to stand out from everyone else’s. Staged homes sell faster and for more money. So, consider the small expense of staging to be an investment, not a cost. Many realtors stage homes for their clients by suggesting that they repaint, remove window treatments, and get rid of clutter. Effective staging, however, involves much more than that. It’s selecting the right „props,“ getting rid of furniture and other items that make the space look cluttered and smaller. It’s also about adding finishing touches that produce an appealing look and creating focal points in the main living areas.

A properly staged home shows the home’s possibilities and potential, creates an inviting space to inspire potential buyers, and generates a mood befitting the home (inside and outside).

Remember… First Impressions are Lasting Impressions

Potential buyers will size up your home before they even enter. If your home lacks curb appeal, many prospective buyers will reject it without looking further or will try to lowball you on price. Here are a few tips to turn browsers into buyers:

• Paint the house if paint is peeling or looking dull.

• Display easy-to-read house numbers.

• Mow the lawn and trim the shrubs.

• Wash the windows.

• Power wash siding and walkways.

• Make any repairs that make the outside of the house look unappealing.

• Be sure the doorbell works.

• Select a doormat that compliments the architecture and color of your house. (One that says Welcome“ works, but monograms and team doormats don’t).

• Remove garbage bins and anything else that may be unsightly. (As obvious as that sounds, I’ve seen that many times.)

Sure the Foyer is Appealing

The foyer is the first space potential buyer will see once they enter your home. Add color through artwork, place fresh/silk flowers, or a table lamp on a hall table, and lay a gorgeous area rug down to add warmth and interest. Don’t forget scent. Have a dish with potpourri or lay an incense stick on the ledge over the door trim. If you don’t have a foyer, you can create a sense of entrance by placing an interesting chair or small table near the front door.

Get Rid of the Clutter

Once you decide to sell your home, it’s really no longer your home. Think of it as a commodity. Get rid of the clutter. The major contributors to a cluttered look are too much furniture, too many knickknacks, too many family photos, too many items on the walls, and too many things on the refrigerator door. Take a hard look at what you have, and ask yourself what you can live without. You can always rent temporary storage for large items you need to remove but will want to use in your next dwelling. And if you won’t use those items, discard them. There are many organizations that will be glad to get them.

Add Some Interesting, Colorful Accessories

This doesn’t contradict removing clutter. For example, after you’ve removed the small appliances, canister set, and recipe books from your countertops, place a colorful bowl of fruit on the center island, put a place setting at the table or counter, or place some colorful bottles of cooking oil with a cookbook on a bookstand. This will make the kitchen look like a cozy place to gather.

Play Musical Chairs

Consider moving furniture, artwork, and accessories into other rooms. Just because you bought that armchair for the family room doesn’t mean it won’t look great anchoring a sitting area in your bedroom. And the hope chest at the foot of your bed may make a lovely piece in a hallway or foyer. Try refinishing the piece to give it a fresh, new look.

Make Your Dining Room Appear Larger

Remove a leaf and use fewer chairs to make the dining room look larger. Consider putting a colorful runner on the table but not a table cloth (which will make the room appear smaller). And if you have nice hardwood flooring, show it off instead of having an area rug.

Paint for Larger-Looking Rooms

If you want to make a room appear larger, paint it the same color as the adjacent rooms. This creates a seamless look that will give the illusion of both rooms feeling like one larger space. For an even greater illusion, paint your walls the same color as your window treatment. Also, remove all the wallpaper.

Make Sure Each Room is Well Lit

Many homes have improper lighting, making them cold and unwelcoming. Increase the wattage in your lamps and fixtures, and use dimmers. Don’t depend on just one or two fixtures per room. Try to have a variety of lighting in each room: ambient lighting (overhead), task lighting (under cabinets or reading), and accent lighting (on tables and walls.) And when your house is being shown, make sure all the lights are on. This is especially true if you don’t have natural sunlight streaming in.

Raid Your Yard

Nicely staged homes usually have fresh flowers. Instead of buying them, pick them from your yard. Forsythias come out in the spring and make a cheery arrangement in a vase. Blazing fall foliage can warm up your décor on a chilly fall day. And holly branches (heavy with berries) will add holiday spirit during the cold winter months.

In conclusion… When potential buyers can see their family and friends lounging in the family room, relaxing and watching television, or sitting around for a candlelight dinner, they’ll think they found the holy grail. The next thing you’ll see on your front lawn is a sign that reads SOLD.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

The Open House: How Will Your Home, Be Shown?

Most people realize, in most instances, one of the weapons, in the arsenal, and plan, for selling and marketing a house, is conducting an Open House. However, if all it took, was doing so, why would any homeowner need the services and representation of a professional real estate agent? For those, who have ever attended more than one of these, you will probably agree, the experience, and impact, often varies significantly, and dramatically! The reality is, it’s not only about having Open Houses, but how they are performed, and focused! With that in mind, this article will attempt to, briefly, consider, examine, review, and discuss, what this means, requires, and involves, and why it matters.

1. Marketing, promoting: If they don’t come, it doesn’t matter, regardless of how the rest of the process, is performed! How will you attract the maximum number of qualified, potential, home buyers, unless/ until, you carefully examine and consider, your options and alternatives, and your niche market, for the particular property? Where, and how will you promote, and market the Open House? Some methods, to be used, include: a) personally, calling as many local real estate offices, as possible, as well as sending the office, an informative, inspiring fact – sheet/ information, to differentiate your listing, from the rest – of – the – pack; b) at least for the first weekend, use a local paper, with wide, relevant distribution, and good potential for results; c) extensive Internet marketing and promotion (free and paid); d) Social Media marketing (targeted); quality signs. etc. The first weekend, you should consider, having an Open House, both on Saturday and Sunday. A good schedule is having one, each weekend, for the next 3 weeks, if the house, is still, on the market/ available, and then, one, every other weekend, until it’s sold!

2. Curb Appeal: What will be the first impression, when potential buyers, approach the house? Make sure the house, is neat, clean, clutter – free, etc.

3. First look inside: What will be the first impression, when a potential buyer, enters the house? Is the home, free of distractions, odors, etc? Would this particular home, benefit from staging?

4. Agent’s conduct: How does an agent’s conduct himself, at the event? Is he welcoming, receptive, enlightening, and ready, to answer any questions, and address concerns? How might a quality real estate agent, balance, giving a potential buyer, space, and being proactive? Beware of a distracted agent, who is there, in body, but not in effectiveness, etc!

The success, and value of any Open House, depends on a combination, of attracting a significant number of potential, qualified buyers, and addressing, how to best, show the house, to its best advantage. Who a homeowner hires, to represent him, really does matter!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Renovate Your Home, Or Sell And Upgrade?

Many homeowners, at some point, in time, recognize, their needs, today, are, perhaps, considerably different, from what they were, when they originally, purchased their existing home. Perhaps the house, is too small, or you need, a different layout/ configuration, to meet your present, and/ or future needs? Maybe, you need, more bedrooms, a larger kitchen, etc, and you must make a decision, as to how, to address this, in an effective manner? With that in mind, this article will attempt to briefly, consider, examine, review, and discuss, whether you should renovate (and/ or expand) your present house, or be better off, selling it, and buying a different one, which better meets your new needs, etc.

1. Present home renovations/ expansion/ upgrades: How much would it cost, to do, what you feel is needed, to make your present residence, work, effectively for you, in the future? What does your community, in terms of building codes, etc, permit, and demand, to make these changes? Are you willing to live, in construction conditions, during this period, or, pay, for a temporary place to reside, while the work is being done? How important is living on the specific block, in the neighborhood/ area, you now live? Will renovating, make the quality differences, which help you, enjoy your living conditions, as you want, desire, and seek?

2. Selling, and upgrading: How much, is realistic, in terms of the price, you might receive, if and when, you attempt to sell your existing house? How long might it take? How much extra, might it cost, to purchase, your ideal, living conditions and situation? How many houses, are available, in the real estate market, and area, you prefer, and, which you can afford? How will your personal comfort zone, affect this process? How is your credit, and how much additional mortgage, might you qualify for? What will be the real estate taxes, in the new location? Can you afford to move? What are your true needs, expectations, and how will moving, make things better, for you? Are your perceptions, as realistic, as possible?

Before making any decision, which is, as important, and, perhaps, crucial, as this one, take the time, and make the effort, to fully consider, your options, and alternatives, carefully, and proceed wisely. Since for most of us, our house represents our single – biggest, financial asset, doesn’t it make sense, to carefully examine the options above, as well as any other relevant ones, and proceed, with what’s best for you?

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

How to Sell Your Home Fast, Lightning Fast

Are you all set to get your home sold? Great! Now the next questions you should ask yourself is exactly how are you willing to go about doing it and exactly how long can you wait? When you’re aiming to offer your home you require to consider your desires and objectives. Is the home making your life miserable or are you simply planning to get the most for your cash and you want to wait for that perfect purchaser?

Lets presume that you’re planning to get the most you can from your property. In order to do this you’ll have to see to it that everything in your house is entirely fixed. There can not be any known concerns such as plumbing, electrical, natural or structural problems. By organic issues I indicate parasites and weeds. After the essentials are cared for you need to concentrate your focus on something called staging. Staging is everything about embellishing the home in such a way that it will make your potential buyers, specifically their spouses because they ultimately manage men in relationships, want to buy the home. You can do this be either decorating the property yourself with brilliant selling colors with art work and furnishings such as yellow, orange, mango and lime. These specific colors mentally set off purchasing moods.

Take examples from the regional design and decoration books and take trips to furnishing establishments. For this technique I’d advise offering the home furnished, if for any reason the purchasers would be interested in buying the property unfurnished you can always hold an auction to sell off the furniture numerous weeks prior to the closing date. Before you do that, just make sure that the purchaser’s deposit has already been received and that you’re at the point in the agreement where they won’t be able to get their deposit back if they back out of the deal.

Now, if your property in is in such a condition that it would not make sense for you to fix it and you’re just wanting to sell it swiftly, there is a much easier way to offer your home. All you have to do is call one of those ‚We Buy Houses‘ guys, and they’ll purchase it from you. The benefit of dealing with a ‚We Buy Houses‘ purchaser is that you don’t have to worry about conducting any repair services to your property, you do not have to worry about listing it with a Realtor or showing it to a thousand tire kicker purchasers, waiting around for somebody to get bank financing and you most certainly do not even need to manage the closing procedure, take care of title business, city officials, inspectors or pay any closing costs.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

5 Keys To Effectively Selling A Home

As a Real Estate Licensed Salesperson, in the State of New York, for over a decade, I realize, it is a professional’s duty and responsibility, to effectively, professionally, represent clients and customers, either buying or selling. Many of our clients make the decision, for any of a multitude of personal reasons, to sell their homes, and their desire, is nearly always, to receive/ get, the highest possible price (related to existing market conditions), in the shortest, reasonable period of time, with the least amount of hassle, and/ or aggravation! To do so, professionally, and properly, there is a need, to both understand, and utilize, the 5 keys, to effectively, selling a home.

1. Strategy: The finest representation, requires a clear – cut, focused, meaningful, relevant strategy, based on a number of relevant factors, etc. The process must begin, with a discussion between agent and client, and agreeing to proceeding, on the same page, focused on the best way, to market a specific property, in order to achieve one’s needs, and objectives.

2. Pricing: Creating the best, initial listing price, means doing so, not based on emotion, and/ or pie – in – the – sky, wishing, hoping, greed, or unrealistic expectations. Quality agents will discuss pricing strategies, and which, might make the most sense, in the specific market, local area, and time. A meaningful rule – of – thumb, should be, to price a house, right, from the start!

3. Marketing; same page: Successfully marketing and selling a specific home, requires agent and client, to be on the same page, and commit to their agreed – upon, strategy. Homeowners must do all they can, to make their houses, readily available, so the most, qualified, potential buyers, are able to view it. When you get many views, you optimize your marketing efforts and possibilities! Homeowners should interview potential agents, and have a thorough discussion on how, a particular agent, might market the house, and the reasons!

4. Competitive; comparables: Remember, houses are not sold in a vacuum! There are generally several houses, for sale, in your area, and, you will, get your best possible results, when you are competitive, and make your home, stand – out, from the pack, in a positive way! Don’t guess about listing price, but examine and consider comparable properties, so you position your specific home, where, you’ll get the best results!

5. Strong negotiator: As the song goes, You’ve got to know when to hold them, know when to fold them, so, homeowners, must seek agents, who are, truly, strong negotiators. You need someone, who will effectively, fight, for your best interests. This individual must be ready, willing and able, to suggest to you, when you should accept a particular issue, and when to hold – out!

The better one recognizes and accepts, these 5 keys, the more capable he becomes of having his home, effectively marketed, and sold! A homeowner’s best interests are served, when he, and his chosen agent, consistently, persistently use a quality approach!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

5 Best Real Estate Keywords Search Tools in 2017

Finding the right keywords for your real estate business is the real challenge. In fact, it is very crucial to start with. You need to search the right keywords that will attract the right audience for your business. At the same time, you need to think about the competition. The keywords that you should use should pass through your competitors or you need to search for words that have less competition that will likely help you to rank at search engine sites. This doesn’t mean that you need to look for the terms that nobody is searching and chasing for you are losing your main objective. Instead, you need to find something that attracts enough people for your real estate website but less competition. Tough, huh? This is why you need to use keywords search tools so you can carefully study your keywords and decide which ones to use.

However, if every realtor is using the same famous real estate keyword research tools then they will all come up with the same results. The key is to use one or two keyword search tools and match the results.

Here are some of the best keyword search tools that you can use for your real estate website this 2017.

Google Keyword Planner

This is one of the most famous keyword search tool but you might still want to consider this for reference and to match the other results you find in other search tools. This tool is free and integrated directly with Google AdWords. You need to have Google AdWords account to use this tool. You can sign up for free. The advantage is that it provides you deep information. It also gives you a monthly estimate of impressions based on the keyword phrase and offers you numerous ways to filter keyword searches. However, this tool will not show you how your real estate website is doing in search engines with the given keyword.

SEOBook’s Keyword Suggestion Tool

This is a great website by Aaron Wall that draws search data from different reliable sources. You can use this as a cross-referencing tool.

adCenter Add-in (for Excel)

You might also want to test your keywords with Microsoft keyword tool. It might be limited to MSN data but it will give you interesting insights that will guide you with your keyword strategy. It is not only Google that you wanted to please, but you might also want to rank with other search engines sites like MSN.

WordTracker

Small real estate businesses are using WordTracker to not only research for keywords but also to build new links which you can’t found in other search tools. It also helps you to develop a SEO strategic platform. The only limit of this tool is that some of the times the results it gives are fewer than its competitors.

SEMRush

This is a great tool to keep an eye with your competitors. This tools offers a lot more than the others. You can add your URL to see what keywords are ranking with your website or you can add your competitors URL to see which words rank with it.

Each tool has their own advantage and disadvantages, choose the one that fits your need at the moment.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

How to Find Land Before the Real Estate Agents Find It!

Knowing how to find land before a real estate agent has it listed at top dollar is terribly important if you want to make profits in land, either residential, or farm lands, or hunting lands.

There are several methods of finding land and some of the more popular methods are simply looking in the offline classifieds, as well as the online classifieds. Of course, Craigslist is a good source of information.

To find land that is in foreclosure, you can contact your county clerk’s office and get information on any pending foreclosure sale. You could contact local banks and determine if they have any bank owned land that they want to sell.

Plus a good source for finding land before it is listed by a Realtor, is property in probate.

To find property in probate, you can talk with lawyers who deal with probate and who are presently working to settle the estates of various people. Or you can track down probate cases yourself. You simply get a local county newspaper which has the legal notices in it and locate the probate cases and get some case numbers and names.

Then go to the Internet or to the county probate court and get information on the probate cases you have found. At the tax appraiser’s office, you can determine what real estate they owned and of course, you are looking for land. You need to determine who the Executor of the Estate or the Personal Representative is and contact them about acquiring land that may be in the estate.

You want to try to find a parcel of land that the executor of the estate lives out of town. They have to take care of a lot of problems and they may be anxious to get rid of a problem, i.e., a piece of land, very badly, especially if they are out of town.

My favorite method of finding land before the real estate agents find it is to send a letter to the owners. I have used several letters and the one that I like best does a fantastic job, normally getting a 13% response! Once you start getting involved with land, you will find that the deals come out of the woodwork and you will have all you need.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Tips for Getting New Clients As a Realtor

Admit it or not, finding clients on the vast real estate market is very challenging. It is challenged by the existence of big real estate firms which employ hundreds of experienced real estate agents on their teams. If you are a newbie, you could easily be swallowed by the efforts exerted by the established firms. But have you ever think that they also started out as rookies in the field? If you are in this situation, here are some tips to at least give you a leverage on finding the right clients for you.

Create your own circle of offline connections and influences. As much as the online world is essential to widen your connections, the offline connections and influences is equally essential. Start with your family and friends. Then add your past classmates even those from your elementary days whom you still remember. Your teachers can be great additions. Move on to those whom you are tapping services as professionals such as your doctors, dentists, hair stylists, pet groomers and fitness coaches. The parents of your children’s classmates and friends can also expand your offline connections. If you have business contacts, add them as well. Don’t forget your neighbors. They can be great sources of referrals.

Build a better online network of friends. Through social media, you, as a real estate agent is bestowed greater power to enhance online connections. Your network can be a greater web of interconnected persons starting with your family members down to their own friends, acquaintances, friend of friends, and so on. Before you notice it, your network has expanded to include professionals of diverse titles not only in your locality but also in adjacent towns and nearby cities. If you think they are not relevant, you may be wrong with the impression. Anyone in your online network of friends can always be a great source of referral even those who you seldom see to be adding activities in their social media accounts.

Send mailers, both online and offline. Now that you have established both your online and offline connections, it is time to introduce yourself as the rookie real estate agent. For offline mailers, be sure to have a formal tone. Give your full name, license number, the firm you are connected too, its address, and contact numbers of you and the firm. Inform them of the services you are offering.

For online mailers, the same can be followed. But since it is an electronic form, you may want to add some enhanced graphics and video.

Create your own website. For personal branding, having an own website is an essential. This is where you can provide listings, value added services, frequently asked questions, and even informational articles that can help spark the interest of your potential clients. Support it with a blog, and connect it with your social media accounts in different real estate online platforms.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Realtors Vs The We Buy Houses Cash Companies

When deciding to sell your home you have two options. You can either use the services of real estate broker or you can sell it yourself to a „We Buy Houses Cash“ company. Each scenario has its pros and cons which we have outlined for you below. Every situation is different and we want to make sure you make the best decision possible. We have also outlined some key questions you should ask yourself before making this big decision.

Realtors. Realtors are the best source for selling your property. It’s a proven fact that realtors will get at least 10-20% more for your property than you would if you sold it yourself. It is also a proven fact that you will sell it 50% faster using the services of a local real estate agent. Since most agents are current on up to date trends they will be able to guide you in what items need to be addressed in order to get maximum price for your house. With an agent who specializes in your neighborhood they may have connections to buyers through colleagues and past clients that you do not have access to. An agents network is a very powerful tool to getting your house sold fast. I recommend using bigger cooperate brokers such as Berkshire Hathaway or Coldwell Banker Gundaker.

With any service provider their is a cost of doing business. The average expense for a realtor is 6-7% of the sales price of your home. For example if you sell your home for $200,000 it will cost you anywhere from $12,000-$14,000 at closing. If you decide to use a real estate professional to sell your property then you will more than likely be dealing with financed buyers which means you might possible have to pay seller commissions ranging anywhere from $3,000 – $5,000. Selling to a financed buyer also means once you sign a contract to purchase you will usually have to wait anywhere from 30-60 days to close. Let’s also not forget the cost of inspections. Most cities require the house pass an occupancy inspection. When the city sends there inspector out there may be items that don’t meet city requirement which may get costly to fix. The potential buyer will also hire a private inspector due to there own due diligence to see what the house may need. This can also get costly if the buyer has high demands before deciding to move forward with the purchase. The extra money you make hiring a real estate professional may cancel out with the expense of broker fee’s and inspection expenses.

We Buy Houses Cash Companies. These companies often get a bad wrap in the area. They are often thought of as scam artists or dishonest people when in reality these companies can be of great service to people. Just like anything there are pro’s and cons to taking this route. Since these ugly house buyers are investors they are not going to give you full price for you home. They are usually buying properties anywhere from 50-60 cents on the dollar.

But before you kick these guys out of your house take a moment to think about the benefits of selling to a cash investor. Fast Cash! In most cases these buyers have the cash to buy the property immediately. Not only will it be a cash sale but you don’t have to worry about paying any seller concessions. Often times they will even cover your closing costs which will save you additional money. These cash buyers will also save you on those hefty realtor commissions. Since your property is a for sale by owner there will not be any broker involved. No broker = NO FEE’s! Did I mention there will not be any inspections done. Since it will more than likely be an AS-IS cash sale the buyer will not bring a city or private inspector through which means you don’t have to do any repairs to the property. So even though you may not get full price for what you think your home is worth you will be saving tens of thousands of dollars in fee’s and repairs. It makes the deal even sweeter knowing they can close in as little as 7-10 days if needed. The best part about selling to a cash investor is that you can leave the unwanted items in the property so you can save even more money on moving expenses.

This is a big decision that should not be take lightly. There are some questions you need to ask yourself before deciding which route to take.

1. Does the home need repairs?

2. Is the home outdated to today’s standards and what other similar homes look like?

3. Do I need to sell immediately?

4. Is the repair list too much for me to handle right now?

5. Will a fast sale take the burden off my shoulders of dealing with this property?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above then you will probably want to consider selling to a local real estate investor who has the cash to close right away. A fast cash offer with no realtor fee’s, closing costs or hefty moving expenses may be the best fit for you. If the home has been kept up and maintained pretty good over the years and you can afford to sit on it for a while then your local real estate agent will be the best option for you and your bank account.

Click the following for more information on Berkshire Hathaway or Coldwell Banker Gundaker.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Your Honeymoon in Germany – Romance on the Rhine

If your idea of the perfect romantic setting contains scenes of mountain streams coursing through lush alpine meadows; medieval castles towering over the banks of winding rivers; narrow cobbled streets winding past watchmakers and chocolate shops; and sunny beer and wine gardens where you and your bride or groom can relax over a bratwurst or Sachertorte, then you deserve to honeymoon in Germany.

Germany offers far more, of course, then the scenes you would expect to find in a box of Bavarian Christmas cards. Germany’s culture is one of the world’s greatest, and has been responsible for philosophical, artistic, and musical revolutions. Germany’s marvelous cultural heritage is celebrated both in her museums, and in marvelous festivals held throughout the year.

A honeymoon in Germany during the month of October will find you there for Munich’s Oktoberfest, where you will be joined by hundreds of thousands of visitors to celebrate the national beverage, beer. Each of Germany’s other great cities, Berlin, Frankfurt, Hamburg, and Stuttgart has something unique to add to your honeymoon.

Germany’s capital, Berlin, is the site of magnificent architecture, important museums, and Germany’s premiere theaters. Spending your honeymoon in Berlin will allow you the opportunity to explore its history, and to experience authentic German cuisine at some of its marvelous restaurants and cafés.

For a look at modern Germany, your honeymoon in Germany should take you to Frankfurt, the country’s financial capital. Frankfurt has a cosmopolitan atmosphere that you expect from one of the great cities of Europe, and if you arrive in Frankfurt by train, you will be struck by the city’s multiculturalism. You will find Frankfurt’s remarkable museums along the south bank of the Main River, and can get a look at the city’s beginnings with a walking tour of the Romerberg, Frankfurt’s Market Square.

No honeymoon in Germany would reach its romantic potential without some time spent in the Bavarian highlands in the south of the country. The Bavarian forest is Europe’s largest mountain forest, and it is within a day’s drive of Munich.

Medieval Germany survives in the towns of Heidelberg and Marksburg. Heidelberg is the site of one of Europe’s greatest universities, and Marksburg, on the Rhine River south of Koblenz`, is the site of Marksburg Castle. The only surviving medieval castle along the Rhine, black-and-white Marksburg Castle now houses a museum with a marvelous authentic medieval interior.

Romance, history, and magnificent natural surroundings are what will make your honeymoon in Germany an unforgettable beginning to your married life!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg