Tag Archives: curb appeal

Renovations Buyers Like to See

Not all renovations are created equal. If you’re adding a luxurious new bathroom or a “man cave” for your own purposes, you’re probably not too concerned about your return when the house goes on the market. You’re spending the money for your pleasure and quality of life, not the return.

messy-garage                  eshop-garage

Garage_b4_right            Gorgeous-White-Interior-Gray-Concrete-Floor-Garage-Storage-Ideas

But many homeowners see their home as a financial investment vehicle and understand that it’s quite likely the day will come in 5 to 7 years when they are ready to trade up or move to a new market. With this eye, every renovation is a calculated decision. In this situation, you want to select projects which are likely to provide a good return.

Any renovation which improves the value of your home in the eyes of buyers without breaking your renovation budget is an excellent choice. So how do you know which ones buyers want to see?

According to a National Association of Home Builder’s 2013 report of 4,000 prospective buyers, the following seven features were on buyers’ most wanted list:

  1. Separate laundry room (93% preference)
  2. Exterior lighting (90% preference)
  3. Energy Star-qualified windows (89% preference)
  4. Garage storage space (86% preference)
  5. Eat-in kitchen (85% preference)
  6. Walk-in kitchen pantry (85% preference)
  7. Wireless home security system (50% preference)

kitchen pantry  cute-dog-in-laundry-room  laundry closet  custom_walk_in_pantry_springfield_mo_fs

You can read the estimated costs and reasoning behind these features in the original Kiplinger article here:

http://www.kiplinger.com/slideshow/real-estate/T010-S001-7-features-home-buyers-want-most/index.html

(Keep in mind that the costs may have risen, as the original article ran in 2014.)

The past few months, something we’ve noticed Millenial buyers look for and often ask about is FIOS connectivity as well as strong cell service for the many mobildevices we now all rely on day to day…something you can’t always gaurantee personally, but its good to know the answers and the availability of these “must-haves”.

Are you planning to sell your home after a renovation? I’d be happy to help you. Let’s talk: Barbara & Gregg, THE NICHOLAS TEAM  realestate@thenicholasteam.com  973-509-2222 ext. 1126

Preserve Your Home’s Value with these Cleaning Projects

Whether your home is two years old or a classic concrete block ranch from 1950, you can help your house hold its value and scream curb appeal with a few simple fair weather cleaning projects. Keeping a home in shape in a little like good dental hygiene… routine attention prevents major renovation!

With the sun shining, here are the top projects you should schedule before settling into vacation mode. Stay on top of these at least once a year and you’ll not only help your home shine, but you’ll fend off the threat of more costly repairs and replacements in the future:

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  1. Power wash. Blast off mold, oxidized stains, kicked up mud, and the grim insect life which can build up over the course of a year. This is good not only for your exterior walls, but also driveways, patios, and panel fencing (both sides, please!). If you don’t own a power washer, you can usually rent one affordably. Be careful with power washers, though, as they can also strip paint when dialed up and used improperly. If power washing isn’t your bag personally, hire someone with a track record to handle this wet-and-wild job.
  1. Gut the gutters. Freely flowing gutters prevent a host of problems. Dig out the muck and you’ll be certain that water isn’t backing up under your roof or running down to the foundation. While you’re working, check the downspouts for cracks and corrosion. Be sure to run water through the clean gutters to see if there are any holes you may have missed while inspecting the clean gutters.
  1. Wash the windows. This is an inside and outside approach, because if you want to maximize the light your house lets in, you need to get the panes from both directions. Start with the outside. While power washing can sometimes be harsh on window seals, using a hose with a green/garden safe cleaning fluid is a good way to start. Once you’ve take care of the outside, remove and wash any indoor window treatments (blinds, drapes) and do a thorough job with the glass. Some people like to use old newspaper as it makes an excellent eco-friendly alternative to rolls of paper towels.
  1. Shore-up sheds and garages. Start by discarding. A year or even a season can result in piles of unwanted objects or half-used containers of questionable chemicals. Be ruthless in what you keep. Once you’ve identified the must-keep items, haul them out and clean the interior of the shed or garage. Replace items mindfully.

Here are a few ideas to help make your yard unique and stand out this summer:

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We love to sell clean homes! If you think your house is at maximum curb appeal, why not find out how much it’s worth?  Get in touch with The Nicholas Team, Barbara and Gregg at the office  973-508-7363 or email us realestate@thenicholasteam.com

Be sure to visit our website for more infomration and to see what’s on the market in your neighborhood and “LIKE” us on Facebook for daily updates and tips for buying, selling and maintaining a home.

Summer White-Hot for Real Estate

Spring kicks off the peak home hunting months of the year, but it isn’t until summer that things really get cooking. While there are pros and cons to buying and selling homes at various times throughout the year, summer can be, on average 25 to 30 percent more active than the annual average.

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In summer you have a real mix of buyers and sellers… some serious and some not-so-serious. In the winter months, many buyers searching for homes would only do so if they absolutely had to. In the summer, there are often a larger number of buyers just toying with the idea. (Many of the serious buyers are eager to get settled before school starts in the fall.)

Selling homes in the summer requires its own brand of seasonal marketing and showing. Here are a few tips you’ll want to keep in mind as you invite buyers to consider your home:

  1. Keep it cool, but don’t keep it dark. Your instinct may be to close the blinds and draw the drapes, but making your rooms feel dark and shut-in is counterproductive. Run the A/C and keep the air circulating. While your wallet may not appreciate the bump in your power bill, imagine how expensive it can be to keep the house on the market.
  1. Stage it inside and out. Have a pool deck? What about a garden patio? Make them as inviting as you would the living room or kitchen. Stage them appropriately and tell the story of what it might be like to live with such nice amenities. Think magazine photo shoot!
  1. Make the lawn sing. Curb appeal can be king in the summer months, especially when the neighbors’ lawns may be looking a little brown by comparison. Find bright flowers that can withstand the heat and provide a high-contrast to your green grass.
  1. Ride the sunset. With the longer daylight hours, you may have buyers who want to check out your home closer to dinner time, once the hottest hours of the afternoon have passed. Try and roll with the disruption… buyers prefer to see a home when the owners aren’t around.

Take advantage of the summer sales activity! We’d be happy to guide you on the buy or sell side of this white hot market: The Nicholas Team, Barbara and Gregg at the office: 973-509-2222 – email us any time – realestate@TheNicholasTeam.com; we’d love to meet for a cup of coffee to discuss the market…

Be sure to visit our website for more information and “Like” us on Facebook for daily tips and market updates