Tag Archives: moving day

Preparation Can Make Moving Day a Celebration

Moving is often listed as one of life’s most stressful events, but there are a few things you can do to make the transition easier. While you probably know some of the basic tips such as having a garage sale before you move, labeling your boxes by room, and filing “change of address” forms with everyone, there are some less-common tips which can save you time, money, and moving-day headaches.

Here are 5 often overlooked moving tips to help make your move a smooth one:

  1. Measure doors at your destination and measure your large furniture. There’s no point in moving heavy, large objects if they won’t make it in the new house or condo. Find out what won’t fit and sell it before hand. You’ll save money on the move and the proceeds from the sale will help you purchase a more reasonably sized replacement piece.
  1. Check for parking permits. moving day 5You may not realize it, but your destination might have parking rules and regulations which require you to file for permits for your moving truck. Sometimes these permits can take a week or two to secure, so don’t leave this for the last minute! There’s nothing worse than a moving truck with nowhere to park (or costly parking fines).
  1. Reserve your elevator. Moving into a high-rise condo or loft? You don’t get to wedge your sofa in the every-day elevator… you’ll need to use the freight elevator. The building may have rules for reserving the freight elevator, so check with the building in advance to make sure you have all the time and space you need.
  1. Find free boxes. If you’re on a DIY moving budget, you’ll want to save some cash by hunting down boxes. Here are some places to hunt: Friends and family, grocery stores, liquor stores, and bookstores and libraries. The boxes may be “broken down” already, but putting them back into box shape is a simple procesmoving days of folding and taping. You can also move clothes in plastic garbage bags instead of wardrobe boxes, which tend to be expensive.
    – Ask us about our moving box exchange- we try to pair up recent clients who have just moved with others in need of boxes- boxes are re-used, re-purposed or recycled!!
  1. Get moving company paperwork in advance. If you’re working with a mover, don’t get forced into signing a document on the day of the move. Ask for all of the contract information in advance and give yourself ample time to review it.
  2.  Check out our Pinterest Board- Making Moves With The Nicholas Team for other moving and saving tips!

Preparation is key to a happy moving day. With the right amount of preparation and the help of friends, moving day can be a celebration, rather than a chore. If you’re thinking about making a big move soon, contact us for help selling your home or finding the right landing spot!

THE NICHOLAS TEAM: Barbara & Gregg, RealEstate@TheNicholasTeam.com  Office: 973-509-2222 ext. 1126.

Undertanding Your Home’s Equity

home equityThe dream of home ownership is about more than just a stable place to live, exempt from the whims and decisions of landlords. For many, home ownership is a piece of the wealth building picture, essential to a future retirement or financial independence. The idea is pretty basic: You purchase a home and pay it down while hoping the value of the home increases over time. Generally speaking, this is what happens over a long enough period of time. (Remember, real estate is meant to be a long term investment.) As you go, you build what’s called “equity.”

 Equity is defined as “the market value of a homeowner’s unencumbered interest in their real property—that is, the sum of the home’s fair market value and the outstanding balance of all liens on the property.” If you were to sell your home and pay off the balance of the mortgage (and any other debts, such as home equity credit lines or liens), the cash you would have leftover is your equity. Your “equity position” changes over time due to a variety of factors.

 As you’ve probably noted, the biggest variable in your home equity position is the home’s true market value. A variety of factors can influence your home’s value, including: Market demand for homes in your area, local amenities, schools, your home’s particular features, upgrades you’ve made, condition issues, and quite a bit more. So how can you tell your equity position?

 First, you need to know what you owe on your home. This is as simple as checking home equity 2your mortgage statement to see what your principle balance is on the loan. This number can differ slightly from your actual payoff amount due to closing dates, interest, and other issues determined during the sale, but generally speaking your principle balance is the number you need to know. If you have any other debt on the home, you need to add the value of this debt to the principle balance. This might include credit lines, liens, or second mortgages, for example.

 Next, you need to know the value of your home. While there are sites such as Zillow and Trulia out there which will tell you what your home’s value is, these “automated valuation models” are generally not very accurate when it comes to your home’s value, as they exclude many crucial factors. Often they come in quite a bit higher. They can, however, give you an idea of general changing trends in your market over time.  Learn more about market values and prices here.

Hiring an appraiser is one way to determine your home’s value from a more bank-like perspective. While an actual sale may be above the appraisal, this thorough, conservative option is a good way to go. The downside? You may have to pay up to $500 for the appraisal.

 Of course, We’re happy to help you get a handle on your home’s current value with a comparative market analysis (CMA). Just get in touch today: THE NICHOLAS TEAM, Barbara & Gregg, realestate@thenicholasteam.com  Office: 973-509-2222 ext. 1126

Ever have a “move in” garage sale?

It’s common sense to have a garage sale before your big move. There’s no reason to pay movers to load boxes of items you can do without. Plus, who needs the clutter in their new home?

But have you ever considered a garage sale after you’ve moved into your new house?

It’s actually a great idea for a number of reasons:

Why did I save this stuff? When you unpack items in you new home, you’re likely to come across a lot of stuff you find you can live without. What seemed essential in the old place just loses its luster in your new space.

But I thought this love seat would fit in here! Despite our best plans, old furniture can turn out to be a poor fit in new spaces. You don’t necessarily have to live with the mistake. Prep it for sale.

Who are these people, anyway? A garage sale will bring out the neighbors. Despite the bargain seeking and good-natured haggling, garage sales are great low-pressure social situations. People are free to browse without the pressure of making conversation. Small talk arises more naturally. People can come and go without obligation.

Who just bought this place, anyway? It’s an opportunity to be a good neighbor. Put out some snacks and drinks. Be easy about your prices and even throw in a few things for free if someone’s buying. Use the event as an ice breaker rather than a profit maker. A lot of first impressions can be made here… why not make good ones?

If you’ve still got stuff to bring to the curb, put the post-move garage sale on your to-do list for the move.

Did you know de-cluttering is also one of the key steps to prepare a home for sale? We have lots of tips if you’re considering listing soon. Please get in touch!  The Nicholas Team, Barbara P. Hughes & Gregg Nicholas  RE/MAX Village Square REALTORS  realestate@thenicholasteam.com


The Essential Ingredients for a Moving Day Survival Kit

Moving day has a lot of moving parts. Almost everything you own is stored for transit, and finding one or two essential items can be a major headache, even if you labeled your boxes.

To make the day as smooth as possible, I advise my clients make a “Moving Day Survival Kit.” It’s surprising how awesome having these items at your disposal is when you first land at your new home. From paper plates and plastic flatware for lunch to toilet paper for the obvious reasons, the Moving Day Survival Kit can be a real life-saver as you sort out where the furniture and boxes need to be. Here’s what I recommend you pack in your Moving Day Survival Kit:

  • Paper towels
  • Glass cleaner
  • Baby wipes
  • Sharpie marker
  • Duct or packing tape
  • Large garbage bags
  • Toilet paper
  • Tape measure
  • Picture hangers/anchors
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Screwdriver
  • Wrench
  • Pliers
  • Box cutters (at least two)
  • Scissors (at least two)
  • Hammer
  • Small level or download a leveling app on your smartphone
  • Plastic silverware
  • Paper plates
  • Disposable / Solo cups
  • Light bulbs in high & low wattage
  • Extension cord(s)

An inexpensive plastic bin is a great way to assemble and store the kit separate from your other possessions. Feel free to add/omit items as you see fit, but with this list you’re sure to have everything covered.

We love to help buyers and sellers on their journey to moving day. Ready to move? Contact us today: THE NICHOLAS TEAM  Barbara P. Hughes and Gregg Nicholas  RE/MAX Village Square realestate@thenicholasteam.com  973-509-2222