Len and Leslie Marma's Blog
There's nothing more satisfying than knowing exactly what you want and taking the necessary steps to get it!
Whether you're searching for the right job, your soul mate, or the home of your dreams, being clear about the results you want can help pave the way for success.
When it comes to house hunting, there are several ways to increase your chances of finding a wonderful home that meets all your criteria. By being organized, focused, and goal oriented, you'd be amazed at what you can accomplish!
Create a priority list: While a certain amount of flexibility is crucial when you're in the market for a new house, there are some things that are essential to your happiness and wellbeing. Those would be considered "must haves" or non-negotiable items.
Unless you already know exactly what you want, a priority list can help you sort out the countless options, features, and expenses you'll be weighing as you explore available listings in your price range. Your priority list can include everything from architectural style and backyard space to number of bathrooms and kitchen layout. There are literally dozens of things to consider, such as the character of the neighborhood, amount of storage space inside and outside the house, and commuting distance. Many house hunters also have a strong preference for features like working fireplaces, screened in porches, and first-floor laundry rooms. If privacy is among your top priorities, you'll want to pay extra close attention to factors like distance between houses, fencing, trees, and hedges.
Choose the right real estate agent: Although most real estate agents are knowledgeable, resourceful, and easy to work with, you don't necessarily want to sign on with the first one you meet. By talking to two or three, you can choose the one who instills the most confidence in you. Ideally, he or she should have ample experience as a buyers' agent and be familiar with the specific neighborhoods in which you're interested. It's also important that you feel comfortable with them and that you can cultivate a smooth working relationship. If you have any misgivings about their accessibility, communication style, or responsiveness, then they might not be the ideal match for your needs.
Although personal recommendations from friends and family is often the best way to find a top-notch real estate agent, online reviews can provide you with helpful insights into an agent's professionalism, personality, and track record. Most agents would also be more than happy to provide you with references of recent and current clients to contact.
While real estate professionals enter the profession for a variety of reasons, most agents genuinely enjoy working with people and get a lot of satisfaction from helping them find the house of their dreams.
Your kitchen is an often used room and can become cluttered very quickly. There are plenty of strategies that you can use to keep the room in order. Below, you’ll find tips that will help you to keep your kitchen decluttered and your supplies organized once and for all!
Make Space For Storage
This sounds like an obvious need in any room of the house, but the kitchen is a place where you need ample storage. There are a few ways to do this. Outside of your cabinets, you can install freestanding storage units, like shelving or extra cabinets. Even an armoire can help you to have a space to beautifully display your dishes.
Under your sink, you can keep your most frequently used items like soap, sponges, and detergent in easy to access solutions. Either install a small turntable, or simple get bins that can be labeled and pulled out as needed. This will keep everything you need together neat and tidy. It will be difficult to actually disorganize this space once you have completed this small task.
What would a kitchen be without coffee? If you brew a cup of joe every morning, you’ll want easy access to coffee supplies. Dedicate a space next to the coffeemaker where you’ll keep the coffee, mugs, beans, and other supplies. You can even keep your travel mugs near this space within reach when you’re running out the door. If there’s little room on the counter, hang hooks on the wall to keep coffee mugs and travel mugs out of the way.
Tackle The Trash And Recycling
There’s nothing worse than having trash and recycling all over your kitchen. Keep these items concealed in dedicated cabinets. The perfect place for the trash and the recycling is next to the sink since that’s the most convenient location for the trash to be in.
The recycling will follow the same pattern as it needs to be rinsed out and ready to go outside in the bins.
Keep The Family Organized
A kitchen is a great place for you to have a center of communication for your family. This is where a bulletin board can be placed with important documents. A calendar listing all of the family’s activities and appointments can be hung for everyone’s reference. This area make use of a small space that would otherwise be wasted in your kitchen. It also serves a dual purpose in keeping the family organized.
Small changes can make a big difference in the kitchen when it comes to clutter, storage, and organization. Once you get started, keeping the clutter at bay can be very easy.
Your outdoor lighting is perhaps one neglected area of your home. For both safety and beauty, the outdoors deserve a certain amount of attention when it comes to lighting. There are plenty of ways that you can make your outdoor lighting both welcoming and practical.
Just as you would inside your home, you should try to layer your lighting. To do this, you should include many different kinds of lighting especially lighting that brightens the outside walls of the home, highlights landscaping elements, and even some overhead lighting.
Use Decorative Lighting
Decorative lanterns and lamps are an easy way to add lighting to your outdoor spaces. You can let them stand on their own, spread them out, or you can group them and line them up in certain areas like a wall or a table. Candles are also a great way to multi-purpose practical lighting with decorative lighting.
Light Your Steps
It’s important to provide adequate lighting on stairs and decks. Anywhere that people can trip is a place that needs adequate lighting. Solar powered lights are perfect for these uses.
Use String Lights
String lighting hung overhead can be perfect for courtyards, decks, roofs, or even trees and shrubbery. If you don’t have anything to hang string lights from, you can always get creative using posts and planters. This is a great non-permanent solution for you to have some pretty lighting available.
Don’t Draw Too Much Attention To Your Property
While you want adequate lighting on the outside of your property, you also don’t want to draw attention to an area of your yard. The whole neighborhood doesn’t need to know that you’re out on your deck, hanging out. Choose lighting that provides an inviting glow without an overpowering brightness.
Use Table Lamps
You may have thought that table lamps are only for the indoors, but think again. Your outdoor setup can be the same as your indoor setup. Put table lamps down on your outdoor tables for adequate illumination. Be sure that the lamps you’re using are rated for the outdoors.
If you use the right techniques and always be sure that you’re following safety protocols, you can find success with your outdoor lighting scheme. When your home is properly lit, the best part is that you’ll be able to enjoy the outdoors of your home much more thoroughly during seasonable times. You’ll also have an increased sense of security and comfort in and around your home. It’s well known that burglars are deterred from intruding on well-lit properties. Set up your outdoor lighting right and get the outdoor season off on the right foot.
Navigating the home selling journey can be difficult, regardless of whether you're an experienced or first-time property seller. Fortunately, we're here to help you limit the possibility of encountering home selling problems that otherwise may prevent you from achieving your desired results.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you avoid risks during the home selling journey.
1. Learn About the Housing Market
What sets your residence apart from others on the real estate market? Ultimately, if you allocate time and resources to learn about the local real estate sector, you can promote your residence to the right groups of prospective buyers.
Take a look at the prices of homes that are similar to your own and are located in your city or town. With this real estate market information, you can narrow the price range for your residence.
Also, check out the prices of recently sold houses in your area and find out how long these homes were available before they were sold. This real estate market information will enable you to determine whether you're about to enter a buyer's or seller's market.
2. Establish an Aggressive Price for Your House
An aggressive initial home asking price can be a difference-maker during the home selling journey. Because if you have an aggressive asking price in place for your home, you could boost the likelihood of a fast house sale.
Conducting a home appraisal enables you to understand the value of your house based on its age, condition and the current state of the housing market. This appraisal is performed by a property expert, and it may help you establish an aggressive initial home asking price from day one of the home selling journey.
In addition, it may be beneficial to complete a home inspection. If a home inspector analyzes your residence both inside and out, he or she can help you identify potential problems. Then, you can perform various home upgrades to boost the value of your home.
3. Remain Flexible
The home selling journey typically varies from seller to seller. However, if you remain flexible as you proceed along this journey, you may be better equipped than other home sellers to identify and address problems before they escalate.
If you require extra assistance during the home selling journey, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. This housing market professional can guide you along the home selling journey and take the guesswork out of listing your residence.
A real estate agent will help you add your residence to the housing market, promote your house to potential buyers and set up open house events and home showings. Plus, if you receive an offer to purchase your residence, a real estate agent will help you review this proposal and make an informed home selling decision.
Avoid problems throughout the home selling journey – use the aforementioned tips, and you can quickly detect and resolve any potential home selling issues.
A home seller who understands his or her residence's strengths may be better equipped than others to enjoy a successful property selling experience. Fortunately, there are many things you can do to identify your house's strengths before you list your residence.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you identify your home's strengths.
1. Conduct a Home Inspection
Although a home inspection generally is requested by a buyer after a seller accepts his or her offer to purchase a house, a seller may want to conduct an inspection prior to listing a residence. That way, a seller can gain deep insights into a house's strengths and weaknesses and map out his or her property selling strategy accordingly.
A home inspection may require only a few hours to complete, and an inspection's benefits can be significant. After an inspection, a homeowner will receive an inspection report that details any home problems. Then, a homeowner can use this report to learn about his or her house's strengths and weaknesses and explore ways to transform assorted weaknesses into strengths.
2. Consider the Buyer's Perspective
Think about why a homebuyer may consider your residence over other options – you'll be glad you did. If you analyze the buyer's perspective, you could discover unique ways to distinguish your house from the competition.
Evaluating the buyer's perspective may help you prioritize home upgrades too. For instance, if your home boasts a large in-ground swimming pool, you may want to dedicate time and resources to clean your pool and perform any necessary repairs. Or, if your residence has a two-car garage, you may want to eliminate clutter from it so you can show off the true size of your garage to potential buyers.
3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent
If you are unsure about what differentiates your home from other properties in your city or town, there is no need to worry. Because if you hire a real estate agent, you can receive expert support throughout the home selling journey. And as a result, you can identify your house's strengths and take the necessary steps to highlight these strengths to potential buyers.
A real estate agent understands what it takes to sell a house, regardless of a property's age or condition. He or she is happy to meet with you and learn about you, your home and your home selling goals. Next, a real estate agent will craft a property selling strategy for you. And once you put this strategy into action, you should have no trouble achieving your desired house selling results.
In addition, a real estate agent is ready to assist you in any way possible throughout the house selling journey. If you have concerns or questions at any point during this journey, a real estate agent will respond to them right away.
Ready to add your house to the real estate market? Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you can identify your house's strengths and develop an effective strategy to promote your residence to the right groups of potential buyers.