Your Home – Stage Your Home to Sell it for Top Dollar

So you’ve decided to sell your home. Of course, you want to get top dollar and as a result, you’re likely looking for any tiny thing you can do to your home that will make it stand out in the minds of potential buyers as they tour your home. Staging your home is a perfect way to make that difference and ensure your home does not stay on the market for too long.

The National Association of Realtors® did studies on home staging and found that it does indeed have a positive impact on the sale of a home. RealtorsВ® have reported that the final price of staged homes they sell can increase up to 10%. Even more, the speed in which staged homes sell is something to really consider. Almost 40% of RealtorsВ® reported in the study that a staged home sells in far less time on the market than an unstaged home. The reason for this is because buyers are more easily able to picture the home as their own when it was staged.

Now while staging is important, and you likely want to hire a professional to do it for you, if you want to give it a try on your own, here are five tips that will help you get started on the right path:

Declutter and Deep Clean

Before you start thinking about attractive knick-knacks or where to put specific pieces of furniture in your home, the most important first steps you need to take are to declutter and deep clean your entire home. Clear countertops and other surfaces, and pack away anything that is not essential.

You want to remove any possible distractions that will cause potential buyers to think of negative aspects of your home. Things like personalized decorations, family photos and other things that don’t relate directly to your home or the potential buyer are great places to start. If you’ve accumulated a lot of furniture over the years and if you can get some of it out of your home as well, this is a perfect opportunity to make your home feel larger.

Group Furniture in Conversational Clusters

Once you’ve gotten rid of any unnecessary furniture in your home, the next step is to group the furniture you have in your home in conversational clusters away from the walls. The idea is to set up a flow to each room, keeping the walls clear of big furniture. Doing this actually makes your rooms look larger.

Group Your Accessories

Although you’ll need to declutter, you still want your space to feel like a lived-in home. Do this by decorating with accessories like differing sized vases, books or plants. Interior designers and staging pros often recommend grouping complementary colored objects in odd number pairings of varying heights and shapes.

Add a Bold Accent

The key to successful staging is to keep the look and feel of your home neutral. That said, adding a bold accent piece or two, especially if they help highlight a particular feature of a room you want a potential buyer to notice is a fantastic idea. For instance, if you have a great entryway with a vaulted ceiling, look for a chandelier that will accentuate this feature.

Mirrors Are Your Friend

Mirrors can help brighten a dark hallway, and also make rooms seem larger. In a room with a window, place mirrors across from the window to reflect the sunlight. It will give it much more of a light airy feel.

Staging is all about helping potential buyers create an emotional connection with your home. Following these steps will help buyers picture themselves living in your home. When you do this, you’ll get offers faster, and you’ll find your home sells for a higher price.

Finances – Investing in Real Estate During a Pandemic

Even though the pandemic has upended many aspects of our lives, many investors are finding that now is a great time to invest in real estate. With the changes to what has now become the “new normal” there are many new rules and regulations, including in the real estate market. Here are some important things you should know before taking the leap and investing in real estate.

Real Estate Is a Reliable Investment

Historically, real estate has been a reliable investment. Even though the pandemic has created a sense of instability in many people, the truth is that home values continue to trend in a relatively normal manner. While commercial real estate is experiencing some turbulence, residential property offers many great investment opportunities that should continue to gain value over time, especially as many workers are finding that with working remotely they need more room and need to move. Because of these reasons, residential real estate is one of the safest investments in the industry.

Location Location Location

When investing in a property, whether you intend to renovate and flip it, or to keep it as a long term rental, you have to do the math to make sure you are going to get a good return on your investment. One of the best ways to ensure that you will have ample opportunities to get a reasonable return on investment is the home’s location. Remember that the location needs to suit the type of people you are likely to rent or sell to. For instance, if your property is a condo likely to be purchased or rented by younger people, you want to pick a location close to gyms, local bars, restaurants and public transportation. If you are buying a home in the suburbs though in the hopes of attracting families, consider things like public parks, local grocery stores, and good schools. Consider who you want to target and what they will be looking for before making the important decision of where to invest.

You Are Going to Spend a Lot of Upfront Money

For the first time in a long time, many mortgage lenders are demanding 15-20% deposits as a result of COVID-19. If you are a cash buyer, this won’t be a concern, but if you are relying on taking out a mortgage for your investment, this could be important. If you are in a position to offer a high deposit straight away, then you will be in a strong position. These substantial upfront costs could be a deal-breaker for some investors, so this is something to consider before starting the process, and definitely, something to research before you act.

Do Your Homework

The residential real estate market can be a safe investment. With the financial difficulties facing many potential buyers and renters, make sure you select a property in a great location that people can’t refuse. Lastly, if you need a mortgage for your investment, consider the substantial upfront costs involved. Need a pre-approval or want to talk, reach out here

This article is for information, illustrative and entertainment purposes only and does not purport to show actual results. It is not, and should not be regarded as investment advice or as a recommendation regarding any particular investment action.

Personal Interest – Why You Should Plant Your Yard in the Fall

Many people think spring is the best time to plant in your yard. While the sun is out and things do grow faster, the fall offers some great advantages for your garden. Here are some reasons why planting trees, perennials and shrubs in the fall are a great idea.

The Weather Is Perfect

The cooler weather in fall is easier for the plants and gardeners alike. The ground isn’t semi-frozen, not too dry, and the weather isn’t too warm or cold. The plants won’t get too stressed because they won’t be subjected to extremes in weather and hence can recover faster after planting.

You Won’t Have to Plant Right After Buying Plants

There is no need to plant right away because you won’t have to worry about plants drying up or the ground being too hot. As for trees, planting them when they’ve lost their leaves is actually better because they won’t have to exert energy growing leaves and can focus on growing roots. This is the biggest fall advantage, helping the plant grow better roots so they’ll have energy to display gorgeous foliage and blooms come springtime. The fall to spring transition is quicker than waiting for a full year before getting to see the results of your handiwork.

Fall Is Lower Maintenance

You won’t have to water as much in fall, so that’s less maintenance effort that you have to worry about. You won’t have to worry as much either about the new plants and whether they will survive or not because of the overall milder weather.

A good tip for planting in the fall is to water the plants in their pots a few hours before you transport them to the ground. This lets them soak up water and be better prepared for planting. Water the hole they’ll be placed in too before planting.

Fall Helps You Pinpoint Sparse Areas

Fall allows you to see sparse areas of your garden that need more plants. It is the best time to plan out next year’s garden and start planting it. You’ll know exactly how the other plants look and how much space they take when they get foliage and blooms, allowing you to add color where you know you see it’s missing.

Gardening Supplies Tend to Be Cheaper

Gardening supplies are typically at their peak prices in spring but are cheaper in fall. Shop for non-perishable supplies, seeds, and maybe some bulbs in fall. You can probably get gardening tools at discounted prices and perhaps some fertilizers, netting, pebbles, and similar things.

Don’t forget Important Dates:

November 3 – Election Day
November 11 – Veterans’ Day
November 26 – Thanksgiving

Words to live by
If you can find a path with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead anywhere. Frank A. Clark

Thank you and have a great month!

Posted in

Paul Stella