Judy Kuhtreiber's Blog
Moving from one apartment to another is not an easy decision for the senior citizens. Apart from its area, there are other factors to consider. It is always difficult to move from a place you accustomed to, whether you are buying a home close to your family, or you are getting a new home to downsize, packing from one place to another requires proper planning.
Senior citizens who are willing to get a new home need to make adequate preparation and follow the right steps for a seamless transition into their new apartment. Here are some tips for them:
Hire a Reliable Realtor
Hiring a realtor seems obvious, but there is a significant difference between a realtor and a reliable realtor. Now, how do you select a reliable realtor? The first step is to ask for the credentials of the agent in question. Realtors who are Senior Real Agent Specialist (SRES) have undergone training to assist senior sellers and homebuyers above the age of 50. Also, you can ask the realtor to give you the contact address of their past clients who own a property similar to yours.
Consider Aging in Place
If you buy a three-story building, make sure you have a bedroom on the ground floor in case the stairs become an issue when you age further. Apart from that, look into home modification like more crowded hallways or shower grab bars.
Make the Government Work for You
You should find out about the home buying programs started by local or state government. Such programs are housing counseling services, assistance programs, and homeownership vouchers. Apart from that, the government has established programs, laws, and regulations for homebuyers that are disabled.
Consider Your Financial Options
You need to plan how you will finance your home whether you go for a reverse mortgage or take the regular mortgage route. You may consider the VA loan if you and your spouse are veteran. What works for some folks may not be suitable for others, so have a chat with your lender or banker about the financing option that is best for you.
Determine How You Will Move
Once you have found a home, the next step is to move to your new apartment. You can take your belongings on your own or consider a hiring a professional mover. Professional movers have the workforce, tools, and expertise required to load and offload your bulky and delicate items with no issue.
Are you a senior citizen planning to buy a new house? The tips above will not only help afford you a smooth home buying process but also help you make a seamless transition to your new apartment.
Locating the perfect real estate agent can be a difficult task, as it is usually hard to settle on someone that you can trust with such a big life decision. But, once you have discovered one, it would be useful you make sure your relationship stays sweet.
So, maintaining a professional relationship with your real estate agent tells a lot about your character. After all, a peaceful relationship with them will help you in the future. They maintain a comprehensive network of people that can help you with home repairs when buying and selling homes, or even refinancing your mortgage.
Good real estate agents are busy, so how can you get yours to stick around after the end of the contract? Here are several ways you can maintain a good relationship with them.
1. Maintain a high level of trust
When you are building a relationship with your agent, it can be easy to focus on trusting them and forget that it works both ways. For an agent-client relationship to stay successful, trust from both sides needs to be present from the start and maintained until the very end.
As a homebuyer, you recruit an agent to work for you and represent you in locating and purchasing a home. They can help you best if you give them complete information about what you are looking for and whether or not you can qualify for the mortgage. They also give you their best advice to help in the decision-making process, but if you are following conflicting advice from someone else, your agent will find it challenging to help you. Your agent needs to be able to trust that you are not going to undermine their ability to get you into the home that is best for you.
As a home seller, you need to be honest with your agent about the amount your willing to accept for the property, and about any liens or issues that might impede the sale.
2. Be respectful of their time
Good agents are busy agents. You are not their only client. So, make sure to meet them at agreed times to look at properties. They may have other showings scheduled for that day, so lack of accountability on your part affects more than just you and them. And if you like a home and are considering making an offer, let them know so that they can be prepared to get your offer in as soon as possible.
When selling, vacate your property when they have a buyer ready to look at it. Yes, it may be somewhat inconvenient for you, but accommodating the buyer will get your home sold. It also shows your agent you are serious about selling.
3. Maintain open-mindedness
Your agent may present you with options you've never thought about, so keeping an open mind might get you that perfect home you didn't even know was available or it might sell your home in a way you couldn't have imagined. Also, legally, your agent cannot dissuade you from buying in a particular area or making an offer on a specific home, but they can point out the amenities or lack thereof in a neighborhood or suggest that you get a home inspection first. And they can use your checklist to point out if a home meets your stated needs.
When selling, they cannot insist you accept an offer, but they can explain what the market can bear in terms of pricing and give you a realistic picture of what you can expect to receive.
Follow these helpful tips, and you will be on your way to creating a great and healthy relationship with your real estate agent.
When trying to sell any property, getting the best deal is what you should try to achieve. However, this is not usually the case every time. There are factors, some within and others outside your control that could reduce the overall face value of your house.It helps to know some of the essential things that might prevent you from getting a good deal on your property.
1. Noisy Neighbors
Noisy neighbors are downright annoying and a turnoff. It is one of the external factors that reduce the value of a property. While there is nothing much you can do about this, it can reduce the overall value of a house by 5 to 10%.
2. Registered Sex Offenders
The presence of sex offenders generally limits the value of a home. That is not surprising as no one wants to stay in areas that have a terrible reputation due to that kind of crimes. Records have it that the presence of a sex offender can limit the overall value of a house by as much as 12%.
3. Horrible Schools
Many home buyers give massive preference to top quality schools before choosing a house. Records have it that home closer to high-quality school do benefit from the proximity. An area with good schools increases the overall face value of the property because it becomes attractive to families with children. The reverse is the case as well. Houses in the same neighborhood as low ranking or bad quality school are not usually valued high.
4. Some Renovations
Although renovations add to the overall value of a house, some upgrades can repel prospective home buyers. An example is a swimming pool in environments with cooler climates is a turn-off. This most times is due to the expensive upkeep. Besides, if you have gone overboard to maintain your lawn or garden, it could repel prospective homeowners. The maintenance obligation that comes with owning a carefully tended lawn can be discouraging to some potential buyers.
5. Unusual Colors
Bear in mind that the first things a buyer notice about your home is the color. If your house color stands out excessively among the house or properties in the neighborhood, it could affect the price negatively. Unpopular colors also apply to the interior. With odd colors inside, many potential buyers would dread living in it. Poor color choices might reduce the overall value of your property as the buyer will need to consider the cost of repainting.
Some of the things that affect the overall value of a home are out of your control. However, you can do all in your capacity to make the ones in your control work in your favor. Speak with a local real estate agent to help you assess your property's value before listing on the market.
When selling your home you may receive many offers from different buyers, but the smart move isn’t always to pick the highest bidder. Selling a home goes beyond just picking the largest dollar amount; there are other factors to consider while selling your house and how they influence your decision:
Most home-sale offers come with certain contingencies before they can go through. These contingencies are certain conditions that must take place within a specific time-frame for the sale to be successful. You should pick the offer with the least number of contingencies and the shortest periods stipulated. Typical contingencies include a home inspection, approval for a mortgage and the home appraisal. When there is an inspection contingency, the buyer can withdraw his offer depending on how the inspection goes. Financial contingencies also allow the buyer to stop the purchase if they do not get a mortgage approved early enough.
The best kind of offer is one that is offering cash up front. The offer may not be the highest, but it is guaranteed to go through because you don’t have to worry about a bank financing application that may or may not be approved.
Few people can afford to pay cash upfront for your home. The next best set of people are those who already have a pre-approval letter from their lender. This letter means that they can get a loan whenever they are ready. A buyer with a pre-approval implies that they already have everything necessary to get a credit and so the process following the offer will not be as difficult as it is for someone without a pre-approval.
There are many kinds of mortgages, and if a mortgage from a bank backs your buyer's offer, then it is not going to be complicated. If the buyer is using an FHA loan or another government-backed credit facility, it could become involved with more processes and requirements.
Everyone wants to close the process as quickly as possible and move along to other things. If the buyer wants to close immediately or under thirty days, then that is the perfect situation. You could also need some time especially if you are buying another house and would like it to be ready before moving in. Work with the offer that offers you the best timelines for your plans.
Price matters, but a lot of other things matter too when considering offers for your home. Discuss these with your real estate agent to help you decide which offer will work best for you.
It can be quite frustrating for a homeowner with a home on the market for an extended period that cannot find the right buyer. Because a lot goes into listing a house and many plans depend on the sale going through, there is an added pressure to get the process over with quickly.
Luckily, there are some things you can do if your home is staying too long on the market to make it more attractive to buyers. Below are some popular alternatives to take when confronted with issues like this:
1. Sell at a later date
While it might be possible to sell a home virtually in any market, it is as well possible that there are other beneficial periods to try to sell your home. For example, trying to sell a house in the winter isn't ideal as the weather makes it difficult for buyers to come to view the house.
2. Rent it out
If you have issues paying your mortgage, you should consider renting out your home. The rent sometimes may be above your mortgage depending on what you offer. Either way, it pays most of your mortgage and lets you manage your finances better.
3. Try a second mortgage
If you are selling your home because you need money, another option could be to take a second mortgage which will free up some of your home equity as cash for you to use for immediate financial needs. You may also seek a home equity line of credit which helps you to access available funds.
4. Lower your selling price
Reducing your selling price can be your last option when your home has been on the market for several months. A drop in selling price would make your home attractive to buyers who are looking to buy a bargain. The reduced asking price will also make it easier for your buyers to get a mortgage.
5. Change your real estate agent
Sometimes the market isn't the problem, but your real estate agent is. In cases where your agent is not experienced enough or distracted from the sale, you may consider switching to someone else to list the home when your contract ends. Find someone that has a marketing flair and can organize regular open houses for your property. This will help to put your home back to the forefront of the real estate market and increase your chances of selling it.
Bear in mind that timing is essential for real estate sales and while you may experience some delay, you can still help the process. Seek the advice of a property expert in re-marketing your home.