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Fix it and Flip it – How I Lost Money on Real Estate

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I’ve known a lot of people who have lost money when they sold their homes. In fact, I’m one of those people, and it’s happened to me more than once.

There are a number of factors can cause a financial loss when you sell your house, including the need to sell at the wrong time due to divorce or an impending foreclosure, or a downturn in the local real estate market. However, it’s also common to lose money simply by making too many expensive changes to the house before putting it on the market. This is how I lost money on real estate, before I wised up.

My most resounding failure in the fix it and flip it market was a house I bought in Spokane, Washington. Knowing what I know now, I would have restricted myself to replacing the carpets and the kitchen and bathroom fixtures, painting inside and out, and buying new appliances. I probably would have replaced the old-style windows, too, to make the place look nicer and appeal to the energy-conscious buyer. These fixes could have been done easily within the two years I needed to live there to avoid capital gains taxes.

Since I didn’t know what I know now, I made major renovations, which included moving the bathroom. I did most of the work myself, but the materials alone cost more than I could get back when the house was sold. With the exception of repairs done to the house to make it eligible for an FHA loan and watering the grass, I doubt that any of my major projects really helped me sell the house or increased its value.

If a house is actually sound, with no structural damage or insect problems, the biggest reason it will sell for less than its worth is usually cosmetic. This was certainly true of the house I bought in Spokane. Dirty carpeting, and a wall in the living room covered with mirror tiles, kept most buyers from going any further into the house. I could see past the cosmetic problems and see the home’s full potential – but my imagination went a bit too far.

The floor plan was odd, and slightly inconvenient, but leaving the bathroom where it was would have been far more rational, financially. Why didn’t I do that? Because my emotions and my nesting instincts took over, pushing aside all thought of future gain or loss.

Let’s face it – most people don’t buy their own homes with the intention of making a profit, although they certainly hope the house will be a good investment. In fact, the emotional stress caused by the process of buying a house and moving into it can be enough to completely erase any thought of moving again a few years later. However, I know several families who have made a very good living by buying underpriced homes, living in them and fixing them up, and then selling them when the IRS will allow them to do so without paying extra taxes. Clearly, these folks don’t make any changes to these houses without carefully considering the bottom line.

After my Spokane adventure, I decided to learn from my mistakes, and find out how to stop losing money on houses. I read books by authors who are experienced in fixing and flipping houses – and then read them again. When I saw that most remodeling projects almost never recoup their costs when the house is sold, I was a little shocked, because I had been guilty of almost every mistake on the list at one time or another. I know many people who have also made the same mistakes, even when they started those remodeling projects with the intention of increasing the value of their homes.

When I bought my next house, I kept that list very firmly in mind. For instance, my kitchen was badly in need of a major overhaul, (or so I believed), and it was far too small. I pored over the latest home decorating magazines, and ideas came flooding into my head. I thought about knocking out some walls, and I even tried to imagine adding on to the house to make the kitchen bigger. New cabinets would be needed, and new appliances…

In the end I painted the kitchen cabinets and replaced the sink with a new one I purchased at Ikea. I covered the chipped orange Formica counters with printed cotton fabric, and coated it with many layers of water-based Verathane that was intended to protect wood floors. The complete “remodel” cost less than $400, as opposed to the thousands of dollars that I would have spent if I followed through on my idle dreams of a “perfect” kitchen. Since the house sold at a very good price within two weeks of listing it, my buyer obviously didn’t mind that the kitchen didn’t meet my idea of perfect. Because I kept my costs down, I made a handy profit on the sale.

Would I have been able to sell the house for more money if the kitchen had been remodeled and expanded? Perhaps, but not enough to cover the cost of the remodel. Although the National Association of Realtors lists a kitchen remodel as one of the projects that will increase a house the most, they still advise that you should expect to get back only 80% of the costs. If your new kitchen is far fancier, bigger, and more expensive than any other kitchen in the neighborhood, the returns will be even less. A full kitchen remodel can cost thousands of dollars, so the 20% you don’t get back can be a big chunk of change.

Does this mean that you shouldn’t make changes to your home that would make you happy? Not at all, especially if you intend to live there for many years. But it does pay to sit down with your spouse or partner before you start making your remodeling plans, determine exactly how long you’ll be staying in the home, and then think about the full financial implications of the remodeling project. Even if you don’t think of yourself as a professional house flipper, it might pay to slow down a bit and find ways to improve the home without spending money you’ll never see again. As a bonus, your family might be able to avoid the stress and disruption of all that remodeling mess.

Home Improvement And Repair Projects Have Never Been More Popular And Easier To Accomplish

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The popularity of HGTV (Home & Garden Television) has created a
thriving market in do-it-yourself home improvement and interior
decorating. All sectors of the home improvement industry have
benefited since HGTV started airing in 1975.

The real estate boom was followed by a home improvement boom.
People would buy a old house and want to redecorate the house
from floor to ceiling. People who had lived in their houses for
a while wanted new kitchen cabinets. The home improvement shows
were an impetus for a massive movement by homeowners to start a
remodeling revolution

The home improvements that people take on include makeovers from
the attic to the basement. They perform functional repairs like
fixing a leaky roof, replacing windows, and adding more room to the
house. Then there are the projects that are just for the
beautification of the home like updating kitchen, remodeling a
master bedroom.

Some people use home improvement as a creative outlet. They paint
and redesign just for the satisfaction of improving their living
space. HGTV has been a large contributor to the home improvement
revival.

HGTV reaches 89 million households every week and over 800,000
nightly prime time viewers. The format of the show has been copied
several times and spin offs like Trading
Spaces, Extreme Makeovers. Viewers sit for hours watching
“Design on a Dime” “Devine Design”, “Landscapers Challenge”.
The home improvement shows just keep coming.

HGTV provides instructions for thousands of home improvement projects.
They provide video clips for everything from garden projects to
constructing a bed. HGTV is the one-stop resource for finding anything
you need for expert help with “doing it yourself” projects.

HGTV makes home improvement look easy and fun. HGTV gives viewers
new ideas and inspires the week end warrior to do some type of home
improvement project. HGTV mission is “to provide ideas, information,
and inspiration for decorating and home improvement”.

The impact that HGTV has on home improvement can be measured in these
statistics.

  • Furniture sales grew by 75%, between Between 1995-2005
  • Sales of home furnishings increased 97% in this same period.
  • These items included soft goods as well, carpets, lamps, area rugs,
    linens, glassware

    People all over the country are decorating their homes to look like
    these superbly beautiful fantasy creations that they view on HGTV.
    If you are not a “do it yourselfer” you can just imagine the way your

    home might look when you go on tours of million dollar home all
    across the country. You see people who look like you making grand
    improvements to shacks that end up looking like your dream home.

    HGTV has had a dramatic impact on the home improvement industry
    because HGTV appeals to the age group of people who have the money
    to pay for major home improvement projects. The demographics of the
    typical HGTV is a female age 35-64 years old. Over 70% of HGTV
    viewers are females.
    That means that the female viewers are encouraging husband, fathers,
    brother to do the work so they can enjoy the benefits.
    The additional general consumer demographics for home improvement by
    female indicate:

  • They shop more often
  • Visit more stores
  • Spend more than the typical shopper
  • The target demographic for the Do It Yourself Website is:

  • Homeowners
  • Ages 25-54
  • Incomes of $60,000
  • Internet access
  • Propensity for home improvement
  • The home Improvement Research Institute studies show that both men
    and women are active participants in the planning of home improvement
    projects as well as the purchase of those products used for
    improvement.

    Increasing the Resale Value of Your House

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    If you are looking some of the best ways to increase the value of your house so that you can sell it for maximum price then this article will make you aware of some of the best methods or ways to do it. By increasing the value of your house, you will not only be able to sell your house at a higher price but also you will be able to sell it quickly.

    Adding colors to your house to make it look better. By just adding some innovative and complementary colors to your home, you can considerably increase the value of your home. Just a little experiment with colors can give you house an entirely new feel and look to your house. You can easily display paint feature walls, fresh colored flowers and add colored plant vases etc. A good paint is must to sell your house at a higher price.

    You need to improve the smell of your house. Sometimes odors or stench tends to decrease the value of a house. This can prove to be a great turn off for the buyers. If you are looking for some of the most effective ways to overcome such a situation then these are, freshly paint walls, replacing carpets, getting your placer professionally cleaned etc. If you want to sell your house at good price then you need to have a look at it from buyer’s perspective. You need to go an extra mile when you are trying to sell a house.

    Try to get the best of the agents. If you are having a good real estate with you then you can sell the house in almost no time. You should select some time in searching for the best dealer. You should interview few agents before you finally select one. You can also approach the existing homeowners who have recently sold their house through agents.

    You need to market your house in a better way. No marketing plan is generic you have to draw out a marketing plan that is specific. Be it fliers, doing open houses, print advertising etc. you need to develop specific plans.

    If your budget allows then you should go for hiring an interior decorator. Being a professional, an interior decorator will make your house look best. Even though it may seem a bit costly to you, it will surely prove to be very helpful to you to get a good return.

    Lighting Fixtures – Home Decor and Remodels Can Have Personality Without Sacrificing Cost or Quality

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    For the past 20 years the real estate market has experienced extensive growth until the market declined in the last few years. With this explosive growth also came an explosion of home décor, styling and lighting, which the average home owner could afford. Prior to this time most of the average buildings constructed showed little flair or imagination, with few exceptions, such as hotels, government buildings and wealthy estates.

    The average home owner does not need to sacrifice with the home décor and lighting. The available choices of lighting range from the mass produced and cheaply made aluminum fixtures found in the big brick-and-mortar home improvement stores to custom crafted lighting imported from Europe. The latter will not be found in any hardware store, but in specialty lighting boutiques.

    Most lighting fixtures will not break the bank, nor should it be necessary to skimp on quality. Specialty lighting houses will, of course, have the best and widest selection of styles. There are well over a hundred different manufacturers of lighting fixtures and lamps in the United States alone. Most lighting stores can not compete with the home improvement behemoths for square footage so will make up for that by having the need to sometimes cram as much as possible into a smaller space. For this reason alone these specialty houses rely on a myriad of catalogs. Many times the customer will be permitted to “check out” these catalogs as there is not a way to leaf through them all in a few minutes.

    Surprisingly most of the lighting shops are quite good at minimizing the wait time for a light fixture order. Quite often the average shipping time can be as little as 3 days or so. For custom designed order a realistic time frame may be up to 6 to 8 weeks or more.

    The customer should be prepared for the majority, if not all lighting stores, to normally require a deposit for any special order. The purpose for this down payment is to cover the minimal expenses which the store will incur in the event of an order cancellation. Many specialty boutiques may also assess a restocking fee in the event of an order cancellation as well.

    When shopping for lighting fixtures, a prior special order cancellation may be available at a significant discount in order to move stagnant inventory. Should the customer decide to purchase a number of fixtures then price negotiating may also be an avenue for savings for the customer. The saying, “the more you buy, the more you save” can be applied to this situation.

    The Top 3 Reasons to Paint a Home Interior

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    Painting a home’s interior is one of the most popular home improvement tasks for homeowners in Woodstock, Georgia. Using a reliable contractor is one of the most important means of having a home look fresh and clean when the job is finished. The procedure is pretty simple. Choose house painters in Woodstock with a solid reputation. Choose which rooms need to be painted. Pick the paint color and prepare the home. The Woodstock painting contractors will do the rest. Here are three reasons to paint a home interior.

    Inexpensive
    Painting a home interior is one of the cheapest improvements one can make to sell a house when putting it on the real estate market. Today’s market is extremely competitive. Sellers need to gain whatever edge they can to make a home look beautiful and well-cared for. They may even be hesitant to put a house up for sale because of the hassles that go along with getting it ready for showings and open houses. The fact is, a freshly painted home helps a house to look inviting and move-in ready. It smells fresh. If everything else is equal, shoppers will choose the real estate that needs the least amount of work, making it an easier sale.

    Visual Appeal
    Interior painting is just part of general maintenance routines that need to be performed around the house. In about five years, paint colors start to fade and get darker in the corners of the room. Older paint can make a house look dirty. Because paint is a porous material, odors can be absorbed by the paint and make the house smell. Adding a fresh coat of paint will not only brighten a room, it can make it smell like new, too.

    Change
    Some people paint rooms simply because they have grown tired of the existing room color. Others are changing the use for the room and what is in there now is inappropriate. They may have seen a picture in a designer magazine or in a friend’s decor. One thing to keep in mind when changing room colors is to consider how long the current homeowner will be living in this house. Going for the latest color trends can be the kiss of death when it comes to the real estate market, so be careful when choosing colors. Most Woodstock homeowners paint their interior every five to 10 years. Generally speaking, the color chosen should be something that one can live with for the next five years.

    Staging Your Home and Selling Your Home

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    Staging Your Home to Sell!

    With the popularity of new furnishing and accessory stores, consumers became adept at decorating their homes to emulate the glossy home magazines. This puts the onus on home sellers to create the cleanest, most attractive space possible to appeal to the most buyers that you can in a tough economy.

    That’s why it is important to place yourself in a buyer’s head. You may even have a friend help you with this. Walk through your home and consider eliminating ANYTHING THAT IS NOT NECESSARY to make your rooms look great and livable. Let me clarify this idea… your toothbrush in a cup on the counter is NOT NECESSARY to show your buyer the countertop and space. Ten photographs on a shelf do not add to the decorating; though they might give you joy. Remember we are trying to impress someone else. Personal touches that reveal your taste and hobbies and family do not attract buyers, rather they remind buyers that it is YOUR house. We want the buyers to picture themselves and their own furnishings in the home.

    Even if the buyer is not a neat housekeeper, most cannot imagine living in someone else’s mess. Buyers, when faced with a plethora of available real estate, will often choose a home that has been decluttered and smells fresh and clean. Ask that same friend of yours to be honest with you about any smells they can detect, any dirt that needs to be cleaned, or anything that turns them off. Windows need to sparkle, all surfaces should be clear except for just a plant or one decorative item, and your refrigerator needs to be clear of any magnets. Think “shiny and clean surfaces” in every room.

    Begin to pack up bookcases and closets – again offering clean surfaces and space. Clearly mark the boxes and store away – knowing you are making progress towards your move. Consider removing bookcases once you have emptied them – most do not add to the beauty of your rooms.

    • Pack up anything you don’t need for six months, both furnishings and objects on surfaces as well as things in your closets.
    • Remove personal photos on walls. Have only one piece of artwork or a mirror on a wall.
    • Remove small area rugs and make your space appear larger
    • Clean, clean, clean – carpets and all surfaces in your home.
    • Consider removing furniture. Try taking pieces from a room and see if it improves the appearance and space.

    The exterior of your home is also of major importance. Buyers turned off by your exterior will not even come inside your home to see the rest of your house.

    • Does your door need a new paint job? Consider a nice rich complementing color.
    • Is your lawn neatly mowed and edged?
    • Is the pathway or sidewalk to your home clean? Does it need pressure-washing?
    • Does your entry light fixture look nice and not outdated? Consider replacing it.
    • Is your mailbox neat and attractive?
    • Are your windows clean and sparkling? I remove my screens because I love the additional sunlight. Be sure to pack them away safely so you can assure a home buyer that you have screens for your windows.

    If you can spend some time taking care of these details, and even some money to paint and make some small changes, you will find your home sells more quickly and for more money.

    Selling your home in a market with tons of competition can be done with some strategy.

    Adding Curb Appeal To Your Home To Sell Your House Fast

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    If you wish to sell your home and you are searching for ways to help you sell your house fast, getting your home to be in an excellent condition by improving its curb appeal is the best way to go. Staging your home can be a great solution to help you make reselling fast and possibly earn more money. Preparing or beautifying your house before you put it up for sale in the housing market will help rid off loads of housing troubles.

    When you say curb appeal, it simple means the exterior magnetism of a real estate property wherein everything is in perfect condition from the roof to the lawn and to the garden.

    Why do homes with curb appeal sell fast?

    According to the National Association of Realtors, 49% of residential properties that have been sold are mainly because of its curb appeal. Every potential home owner is on the lookout for a house that has a reasonable market value, good neighborhood, accessible commercial places and most especially a house that is simply relaxing to the eye. You may have noticed that most individuals in search for a home always end up purchasing a house that looks flawlessly perfect and pretty. After all, what most buyers look at first is the exterior of the house. No one would prefer buying a chipped stained house, wouldn’t they? They want a place that they can stay for good and one that can stay solid for the years to come.

    Admit it, these days most people who go to open houses choose a house that has caught their eye when they were still driving by or pulling up the driveway. Even more, home buyers tend to pay more for a house that has that charm.

    Improving Your Home’s Curb Appeal

    First impressions always last and getting an excellent liking is incredibly important since this will mainly determine if the buyer will purchase you house or forget about it and move on to the next house. As a home seller, it is your responsibility to tend to every detail of your house so do not waste all your time tidying up the inside of your house. The outside matters too.

    Another common mistake most sellers make is an assumption that potential home buyers have the same intuition as them. Remember, what may be pleasant to you when you stayed in the house can be distasteful to the buyer. So it is best to view the house as a commodity that you desire to sell for the highest dollar possible.

    The following are some curb appeal tips gathered from successful home owners who sold their houses fast.

    ·Do the curb appeal exercise. It is not your opinion that only matters, this time it is the potential home buyers take on your home. Take a good look of your home from a distance in order to get a good view of your house and its surroundings. Ask yourself these three important questions: what is my first impression of the house and its exterior? What are the best exterior features of the house and are there any more ways to enhance them? What are least appealing exterior facets of the house and how can I improve them?

    ·Take photos. Bring out your digital camera in order to get clear views of possible exterior house defects. In this way, you get to organize the tasks you have to do. This also eliminates confusion and it makes the job easier.

    ·De-clutter your yard. Nothing scares home buyers than a messy yard. Pick up the trash and other objects that hinder your yard’s beauty. Wipe, sweep and throw unnecessary things. Tend your garden, water the plants, and trim the bushes, plants and flowers. Take off pointless decorations.

    ·Clean the pavement. No one wants to step on a pathway that is full of dirt. The best way to make buyers buy your house is by having an inviting and happy aura. This must start from your pathway all the way to the inside of your home.

    ·Re-paint. Nothing spells ugly more than a chipped fence or wall. Home buyers always like seeing a house that is fully painted. Also, you might want to change the exterior paint of the house especially when its color is too drab.

    ·Repair. Fix broken windows, fence panels, your mailbox and the like. You can do this yourself or hire a handyman in the village.

    Have Plans to Design Your House – Do Your Due Diligence

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    Everybody seeks shelter and everybody wants a perfect house for its perfect family. Today, more and more people seem to be spending money on designing their houses or hiring designers to do the same to own a beautiful house.

    You might not have any clue about interiors designing. But you can always hire a designer, tell him or her what exactly you looking for and how you want your house to look like. Even if you have no knowledge about interior designing, you will have to play an active role in getting your house renovated or designed. After all it is your house! You know what you are looking for. You know what things to add and what things to subtract. You know every corner of the house. The home design team will just do their work, but in between, will keep asking you for your suggestions and comments. At that time you should know what you want and how you want it to be done. Just giving a contract to any team will not help. You will have to keep your eyes opened and be equally active as the workers, to shape the look of your house.

    Take a tour

    It is not that you sit at home all the time. You also go out. While you are out, observe and imagine things that you can always implement on your home designs. When you visit your friends or neighbors houses, look around. See, how they have got their houses shaped with perfection. You can also visit open houses by real estate agents. This can help you in big measures to learn more about home design projects.

    Many people spend a lot of time driving around in cities and countryside. You can learn and explore from those drives also. All you have to do is keep your imagination-self active throughout. Any sight or visual can attract you and you can very well start implementing in your home designs.

    Stores & Magazines

    You might find going through magazines, dedicated towards interior designing, for examples and new ideas, an absolute nonsense. But you forgetting that these magazines sole purpose of publication is to help people like us know more about interior designing. It is wise to allocate some time from our busy schedule to sit and chat with a well known designer or scoop out some time to check out gardens and houses, interiors of our country.

    It is important to take interest in your home designing because it is your hard earned money that you will spend on decorating or designing your house. You can also visit a local home improvement store to check out new components that have been launched in the market, how to use and implement those in your home designs.

    Many big companies promise to give you your dream home. But how can they know what your dream home should look like? It is your house. You have to plan out how your dream home should look like. After all, your dream home your heaven. So why not spend some time to learn a little about kitchen decorating ideas?

    How to Beat the Bursting Housing Bubble

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    Many say that the housing bubble has burst and it’s very difficult for people to sell their homes. Housing sales have decreased dramatically the past few months, and housing prices are falling all across the country. Many homeowners are still holding on to unrealistic expectations and many would-be buyers are making ludicrous lowball offers, so the market is basically at a stalemate. As inventories jump, prices will have to plummet. Many don’t expect it to get better until at least 2008.

    Last year and part of this year, home prices skyrocketed to ridiculous levels. And now, no one wants to be the last person to have paid way too much to buy a house.

    If you own your house and waited too long to sell, I’ve got a few tips to help get your home off your back:

    1 – Start with your Real Estate Agent – Make sure your current agent has a ton of experience. Used to be you could hire any agent, with only 2 months on the job, and the house would sell before her or she pounded the “For Sale” sign into the ground. No more. Get someone with experience, name recognition in the community, and superior sales skills.

    2 – A Proactive Agent – Get an agent that will truly “pound the pavement” for your listing. You need a proactive agent that will be out there, moving and grooving on your property. Many of the newbie agents that got into the biz over the last two years will be in “career change” mode in the next few months. The real agents who know how to work will be the ones who survive this cycle. Find one who will work for you!

    3 – Know an Agent’s Quality – A great agent will guarantee his or her service in writing. A bad one would run for the hills from a guarantee. A great agent will not make you sign a long term listing agreement. A bad agent will freak out if you won’t sign a fat contract. If it’s not working out, you need to be able to cut the cord.

    4 – All the World’s a Stage! – Hire a “stager” to go through your house and make your house sellable. Many people wrongly think staging is too expensive. Not true. It’s about being creative, not spending money. It’s actually possible to sell your home “as is” (and not stage) and lose money.

    5 – Realistic Pricing Plans – You’re not going to get the big profit you thought you would. Plan accordingly for a much more stingy market. Let your agent do the research on the right price for your home, in your neighborhood. I would recommend not leaving your house on the market too long (and expect some really low lowball offers.) If you’ve already moved and cannot sell, consider renting the house out at a reasonable rate to help provide some relief.

    6 – Self Staging – You’re a Do-It-Yourselfer, huh? Okay. Know this – any wild and crazy decorations, furniture, fixtures, colors, and designs in your house will turn off the average John Q. Public homebuyer. You might have the most clever and eclectic taste on the planet. Your artsy friends think your house is “to die for!” But dark, rich colors on the walls and ultra-modern furniture can turn off today’s picky buyer.

    SELF-STAGING TIPS:
    – To save money, make sure you have Curb Appeal: manicure the front lawn, add some colorful flowers, paint the shutters, trim bushes, paint the front door a nice neutral color, brush falling leaves off the roof, etc. Lay down sod if the summer beat up your grass. Add a new doormat.

    – Is any room in your house red? Blue? Bright green? School bus yellow? Paint it. Creams, whites, pale yellows, coffees, and light earthy greens. With white trim around the doors. Use an eggshell paint to keep off fingerprints and make it easy to clean before an Open House.

    – Declutter. Remove those piles of books, magazines, and newspapers. Less is always more. Remove anything and everything knick-knacky. Take out all your family photos. They want to picture themselves living there. Again, less is more. Makes the house look and feel bigger.

    – Check under your 70’s orange shag rug and pray someone put hardwood floors there. Pull it up, rent a buffer (or hire someone to simply re-finish the floor), and you’ve got an inexpensive way to add home value.

    – Turn cluttered kid’s rooms into a guest bedroom. Not everyone has or likes kids. It could turn them off to see a pink bedroom with ponies and stuffed animals.

    – Steam clean the carpets. Remove pets to the Mother-in-Law’s house (you might be used to the odors, but…) if you have them. Use new fresh towels, candles, and flowers during an Open House.

    – Replace blinds. Keep curtains open during showings – natural light sells.

    – Make sure the house has “feature cards” in every major room (sell features, such as ‘air conditioning’, ‘new water heater’, ‘finished basement’) for showings.

    – Get rid of dirty clothes, trash in waste baskets, mail on counters, make it look like no one lives there. Or a photo layout in “Metropolitan Homes.

    Good luck in selling your house!

    Investment in Home Staging

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    Making an investment in home staging is always a smart choice for home sellers and rental agents, as well. Staging is a proven science that adds tremendous value to a property and can drive up the price paid for purchase or rent simply by optimizing the look, feel and flow of the home’s interior and exterior elements. Statistics have clearly shown that investing in property staging is one of the best ways to derive additional profit from a sale or rental.

    Home staging is not like interior decorating, landscaping or other design arts. These endeavors seek to improve the aesthetics of the home based on occupant preferences. Home staging falls into the category of real estate marketing strategies and is designed exclusively to satisfy the wish lists of potential buyers. By improving the way a home looks and feels to the buyer pool, the property is distinguished from the competition, bettering the chances for a lucrative offer on the house or apartment. To put it simply… Make the property suit the needs and expectations of prospective buyers and you are far more likely to sell it for more money, rather than try to force your buyers to acclimate to the home’s deficiencies.

    Home staging is usually performed by a professional stager who works closely with the seller, and their real estate agent, molding the property to suit the latest trends in the area. Although staging can be a daunting task for do-it-yourselfers, professional stagers make it look easy! These highly trained marketing pros will use a wide range of techniques and strategies to bring out the best facets of any property and use equally effective methods of hiding less desirable attributes. When the job is complete, many sellers do not even recognize their own homes and some even reconsider selling once they see the property’s true potential!

    One of the lesser known benefits of home staging is the fact that staging costs are tax deductible, since they fall under the category of real estate advertising expenses. That’s right. The full cost of professional staging can be deducted from taxes. This makes the investment in home staging a very safe and satisfying one. After all, the benefits come at no cost whatsoever, once the fees are written off!

    As a home staging consultant, I guide clients through the process from start to finish. I try to educate home owners and management companies about the many advantages of staging properties prior to listing them for sale or rental. I love my job, since I know I am providing a valuable service for my clients and have really come to appreciate just how much I can help them to accomplish their property sale or rental goals. I never feel like I have to sell myself or my services, since they speak volumes for themselves… All I do is present the objective facts and the rest is common sense for any intelligent seller or landlord.

    To summarize this article, I urge any and all real estate sellers or rental agents to research home staging as a means of increasing your success rate in sales or rentals, but also as the best method of increasing their profit margin from the transaction. It is not difficult to convince people to make more money! Just show them the way to do it and allow logic to take its course… If I can help you to get more money from the sale or rental of your property assets, please feel free to contact me at any time. I am here to help!