Tag Archives: sell

The Difference Between Looking At a Home Online vs In Person

The Difference Between Looking At a Home Online vs In Person

SURPRISE!!! That’s what usually goes off in the background when you walk into a house that you saw online, only to see that it’s NOTHING like what it looked like when you saw it on Zillow. Size, noises, smells, there are a TON of things that you WON’T see in the listing online…

It never fails.  You THINK you’ve found the perfect home looking on Zillow.  You’ve convinced yourself that the house is perfect, yard is huge, house is beautiful, huge master, bigger den, full basement.  Then you get there to walk through it.  And, it’s a SHOE BOX.  Not even, small, it’s TINY…

That’s what a wide angle lens camera will do to you.  You see, it’s a special camera that you can use to fit an entire room into a photo.  You can’t do that with most regular cameras.  And, the problem is, it makes the room look three times the size.  So, don’t have your heart set on a house before you go physically see it.

Then, let’s talk about SMELLS.  When an agent takes pictures of a home for sale, 9 times out of ten, they’re removing the dog bowls, cat bowls, litter box, and anything else that says potentially, there may be pet odors in the home.  So, you won’t find that out till you get there.  Same goes for that farm next door to that beauty!  You won’t see any yard pics that will show that farm next door, especially if you can smell any manure of anything else at the property…

nj real estate mama

Lastly, NOISE.  Guys, you have no idea from pictures if the next door neighbor has a dog that barks 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Your house may back up to a major highway.  Last year I showed a GORGEOUS home in a nice area, and we didn’t realize until we were IN The home, and heard the noise outside, that there was a lumber yard right across the street adjacent to the home.  We could barely see it around the corner, but we heard it!  And, they received deliveries practically around the clock.

So, before you have your heart set on a house you see online, GO SEE IT.  And, go see it at different times of day.  See your potential neighbors, their kids.  Traffic.  Noise.  You NEED to do this, or you may be in for some unpleasant surprises after it’s too late.

~Christine Gerbehy

About the Author: Christine Gerbehy is a Realtor for Berkshire Hathaway Fox & Roach Realtors in Northfield, NJ. and is e-Pro certified. Realtor, writer, blogger, wife, mother and zookeeper, I LOVE what I do. ALL of it. Let me help you to buy or sell your property, ’cause This Mama Sells Real Estate!

Need to see some MLS listings?  You can use mine! Just go to http://www.buynjshorehome.com/ and click on “search homes.”

 

nj real estate mama

So, You’ve Decided To Sell Your Home…

So, You’ve Decided To Sell Your Home…

Ok, so you’ve decided to sell.  What next?

You’re going to need to become RUTHLESS.  Ruthless with CLEANING.  Ruthless with PURGING.  Ruthless with REPAIRS.  But most importantly…

You’re going to need to get a thicker skin.  Your Realtor may look at, and through your home, and probably going to tell you a ton of things you’re not going to like.  Like, that you need to remove things, and DE-PERSONALIZE.

Listen, it’s not that we don’t like your STUFF.  We may actually LIKE your STUFF, but a buyer can’t see THEIR STUFF in your house if all of YOUR STUFF is still there!  Your potential buyer need to be able to envision their personal belongings  in the house to really realizr that your home may be the one they want to buy…

So you’re gonna have to de-personalize.  De-clutter.  Clean clean CLEAN!  Get your stuff into boxes, out of the house, or at LEAST out of sight.  Boxes, closets, basement, garage, wherever.  Garage sale!  Free to a good home!  Just get rid of it.

nj real estate mama

Next is repairs.  Guys, anything wrong with your home becomes BARGAINING LEVERAGE.  Read: LESS MONEY FOR YOUR HOME.  Don’t let stupid, easy, cheap to fix things like leaky faucets, broken locks on windows, missing door pulls, etc., bring down the price of your home.  Carpet stains?  Carpet smells?  Rent a steam cleaner and DO IT.  Pet smells are unacceptable.  You need to neutralize odors.

Lastly, curb appeal.  Guys, if you can’t get people to NOTICE your home, you won’t get them IN your home.  You need curb appeal.  Keep the grass mowed.  Keep the hedges trimmed.  Make sure all of your windows are clean.  If you can, power wash the exterior of the house.  Last, fresh paint on the window trim, door trim and the door, if it applies.  It’s an instant face lift for the house!  Maybe a seasonal plant or two on the porch.  Azaleas for a splash of color.

So, when you decide to sell, become ruthless!

~Christine Gerbehy

About the Author: Christine Gerbehy is a Realtor for Berkshire Hathaway Fox & Roach Realtors in Northfield, NJ. and is e-Pro certified. Realtor, writer, blogger, wife, mother and zookeeper, I LOVE what I do. ALL of it. Let me help you to buy or sell your property, ’cause This Mama Sells Real Estate!

Need to see some MLS listings?  You can use mine! Just go to http://www.buynjshorehome.com/ and click on “search homes.”

 

 

Negotiating on a Home Purchase, TRULY an Art Form…

Negotiating on a Home Purchase, TRULY an Art Form…

Real estate is a tough business.  It’s even tougher to negotiate a deal.  It’s even worse when you’re having your arm twisted by a stubborn  Realtor on the other side of the deal, lol!  You need to make sure you always hold your ground with your agent to negotiate FOR you, and if not, well, you need to get a new Realtor.

Sometimes, there is truly an art to successfully negotiating your home purchase.  Like Kenny Rogers said (insert music HERE) “You gotta know when to hold ’em… know when to fold ’em… know when to walk away, know when to run.  You never count your money when you’re sittin’ at the table; there’s time enough to count it when the dealin’s done…”

Poker Face

Depending on which side you’re on, don’t be too quick to show your cards!  Show the seller that you’re in love with their house, they’ll hold out for fulpurchase price.  Show the buyer that you’re desperate to sell, you’ll lose your pants.  They’ll lowball you and hold out till you buckle.  Negotiating a deal is all about having a poker face.  A REEEEEEALLLY GOOD ONE.

Now, notice that when I quoted the song above, I could have stopped after the word “run,” but i didn’t?   Well, for all the negotiation you’re worth, sometimes the deal dies anyway.  One poor woman at my office, one of the coolest people there, is on her third re-negotiation on the same property!  Still hasn’t closed yet!  On a short sale negotiation, even if the buyer and the seller negotiate a deal, now you gotta negotiate with the BANK.  You know the saying, it ain’t over ’til the…. ???  No truer words when it comes to a short sale…

That being said, if negotiation ISN’T one of your strong points, I strongly suggest that you find an agent that’s a trained professional at it.  You need somebody to be in your corner.  Good comparables for the deal are a must have for truly accurate argument of asking price.  And lastly, BE PREPARED.  Sometimes, it’s good, sometimes it can be bad, and it can potentially get ugly.  But you want that house, so be prepared,be patient and trust your agent.

THIS is one of my FAVORITE spoofs of the art of persuasion, I mean negotiation, lol!  Enjoy!

~Christine Gerbehy

About the Author: Christine Gerbehy is a Realtor for Berkshire Hathaway Fox & Roach Realtors in Northfield, NJ. and is e-Pro certified. Realtor, writer, blogger, wife, mother and zookeeper, I LOVE what I do. ALL of it. Let me help you to buy or sell your property, ’cause This Mama Sells Real Estate!

Need to see some MLS listings?  You can use mine! Just go to http://www.buynjshorehome.com/ and click on “search homes.”

 

Does Your Home Meet the Super 6 Criteria?

Does Your Home Meet the Super 6 Criteria?

Okay, so you want to sell your home, awesome! Whether or not you realize it, there are many factors that will determine how much your house will sell for, if it sells at all. Your home needs to fit in with the Super 6. Okay, so what the hell is the Super 6? Let’s break it down…

 

1. Location
Like it or not, your home’s location will have a huge bearing on how much it will sell for. There are a ton of things that go into this. How close is it to public transportation? How close is it to local shopping? How safe is the area? Is there pride of ownership in the surrounding blocks? Is there any blight?

 

2. Condition of the Home
Ok, come on guys, this is a common sense factor. What kind of shape is the home in? Is it well kept? Does it show pride of ownership? Are your kitchen and bathroom old or dated? Do you have wallpaper on the walls? How about your rugs? Does the carpeting have permanent stains? What about odors in your home? Do you have pets? Is there an odor alerting your visitors when they walk through the door that you own pets? What about your roof? Are there any spots on the ceilings showing that there are roof leaks or issues? What you need to keep in mind here he said anything that is visibly wrong with your home becomes bargaining leverage on the purchase price. You will need to make sure that your home needs little to no repair to keep negotiations to a minimum.

 

3. Price
Ok, this one’s a no-brainer. If you don’t price your house properly, it won’t sell. It just wont. People will not pay $10,000 more to buy your home when they can have a house in better shape and cheaper for far less. You need to sit down with your Realtor and come to a price based on comparables. You must compare the homes apples to apples. Your agent will bring you copies of active listings of homes for sale with the same number of bedrooms and bathrooms, garage, etc.. They will also show you listings of homes that have sold within the last 6 months, so that you will have the most accurate idea of where you should be priced to get your home sold quickly and for top dollar.

 

4. Market Conditions
Obviously, the real estate market has been all over the place for the last couple of years. Some towns get hit harder than others depending on the circumstances. For instance, we are very close to Atlantic City, New Jersey. As you know, many casinos have closed. Thousands are out of work. Many cannot find jobs and are collecting

English: Atlantic City, New Jersey by night
English: Atlantic City, New Jersey by night (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

unemployment. Will some of those people lose their homes? Maybe, maybe not. But what that does mean is that there will be more short sales. That can have a direct bearing on what you can ask as a selling price for your home.

 

5. Financing.
The same way the housing market is affected by certain conditions, so is home mortgage financing. If you remember, back in the day during the real estate boom, interest rates were at 13%. Now, you can get mortgage financing for a home at an average of 4%!

 

6. Agent Savvy
You can have all of the first five criteria, but if your agent sucks lemons, none of it matters. Your agent needs to be savvy enough to negotiate a deal for you to get sold as quickly and for as high a price as possible. You need to be sure, BEFORE you hire an agent, to find out what they are going to do for you to get your home sold. What kind of marketing do they utilize? Are they internet savvy? Will your listing be syndicated to multiple websites? How about videos? Will they make videos of your home and create a website just for your home for sale listing? I do. Until what time can showings be scheduled for my home on any given day? I use a service through my company that schedules showings with a live human being by phone until 11pm on weekdays and 7pm on weekends. I can pull up outside a vacant house with a for sale sign on it at 9pm, pick up my cell phone, get a lockbox code and be showing that house 3 minutes later. Can your agent do that? Hopefully, they can and will.

 

So there you have it. That’s the Super 6. Make sure you have them all covered. Oh, and, IF your prospective agent sucks lemons, call me BEFORE you list with them. I can get your home sold! :0)

~Christine Gerbehy

About the Author: Christine Gerbehy is a Realtor for Berkshire Hathaway Fox & Roach Realtors in Northfield, NJ. and is e-Pro certified. Realtor, writer, blogger, wife, mother and zookeeper, I LOVE what I do. ALL of it. Let me help you to buy or sell your property!

Need to see some MLS listings?  You can use mine! Just go to http://www.buynjshorehome.com/ and click on “search homes.”