Sally Vanjoske, Broker's Blog
The neighborhood you live in has just as much to do with the value of your home as the features of the house itself. The right amenities in a community can increase the value of your home significantly. Read on to find out the most desirable features of any area.
Places To Walk
Whether it’s immaculate sidewalks, hiking trail, or parks, anywhere that you can be outdoors and walk easily increases the value of the nearby homes. This is because it’s great for families to get out, get some exercise, and not have to go very far. This feature can bring in anywhere from a few hundred to over a thousand dollars above your home’s asking price.
We often take trees for granted, but trees that have grown up around a property can add some value to the home. Think of it in the context of, however natural a neighborhood is, the higher the value of the homes in it. Before you think about cutting down any trees around your house, consider the fact that grown trees can increase the cost of a home by up to 5%!
Neighborhoods that are surrounded by historic districts, landmark homes, or other places of historical interest have the higher value. For one, these are usually walkable neighborhoods. Second, your area has a story unlike any other. It’s a fun place to get out and explore. All homes in these historic districts aren’t ancient; you can find some newer construction homes in these areas, which means that there’s truly something for everyone!
A dog-friendly neighborhood is a valuable neighborhood. People love places that they can take their dogs like dog parks. This especially holds true in the city where yard space is limited. Even better is a neighborhood where dogs can be seen in restaurants and coffee shops. If you can drive around the block and see people walking dogs everywhere, it’s a good bet that it’s dog-friendly! People love their pets and want them to be a part of the family, so they need to live in a place that allows them to do that.
All The Essentials
If your neighborhood is near all of the essential things that people need on a daily basis, your home’s value may increase. Places like grocery stores, pharmacies, shopping malls, hospitals, and safety support services all play a role in improving the value of homes in a neighborhood.
A Sense Of Community
If a neighborhood has community groups, a neighborhood watch, or other organizations that help to bring about a community feel, your home may be a bit more valuable than you think it is.
Purchasing a home may prove to be an arduous process, particularly for those who fail to plan ahead for the property buying journey. Thankfully, there are many quick, easy ways to streamline the homebuying cycle.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you become a smart homebuyer.
1. Study the Real Estate Market
A smart homebuyer realizes the housing market fluctuates constantly. In fact, a real estate market that favors sellers today may favor buyers tomorrow, or vice-versa. But if a homebuyer reviews the housing sector closely, he or she can differentiate a buyer's market from a seller's market and plan accordingly.
Oftentimes, it helps to analyze the prices of recently sold houses in your preferred cities and towns. This will enable you to see whether houses are selling at or near their initial asking prices. It also will allow you to find out how long homes are available before they sell.
2. Obtain Home Financing
A smart homebuyer understands the importance of getting a mortgage before he or she pursues a residence. Thus, this buyer will meet with lenders and get pre-approved for home financing to further accelerate the homebuying journey.
Generally, it won't take long to get pre-approved for a mortgage. Banks and credit unions employ friendly, knowledgeable mortgage specialists who can help homebuyers quickly analyze various home financing options. These specialists can teach you about a broad array of mortgage options and help you weigh the pros and cons of different mortgages. Then, once you evaluate all of your mortgage options, you can select a mortgage and kick off the homebuying journey with a budget in hand.
3. Hire a Real Estate Agent
A smart homebuyer knows that working alone to find and purchase a house can be difficult. Therefore, this buyer will allocate time and resources to hire a real estate agent who can provide comprehensive assistance throughout the homebuying journey.
Typically, a real estate agent is a must-have for a homebuyer, regardless of the current housing market's conditions. A real estate agent understands the ins and outs of the housing sector and is happy to share his or her expertise with any homebuyer, at any time.
When it comes to navigating the homebuying journey, a real estate agent is ready to help you in any way possible. For instance, if you need help finding a residence in a particular city or town, a real estate agent will make it simple to narrow your house search. On the other hand, if you want to buy a new house as quickly as possible, a real estate agent will ensure you can discover your dream residence on your timeline. Best of all, a real estate agent will respond to any of your homebuying concerns and questions and help you make informed decisions at each stage of the homebuying cycle.
Enter the housing market as a smart homebuyer – use the aforementioned tips, and you can increase the likelihood of enjoying a successful homebuying journey.
Moving day; you’ve waited months for this day to arrive, working hard to make sure you, your family, pets, and belongings are ready for the big move.
With all of the preparations and various people involved, it’s easy for moving day to become dangerous.
To ensure that you and your family have a safe and smooth moving day, I’ve provided some tips that every mover should keep in mind.
Make plans for pets and young children
The last thing you want on the first day in your new home is to be wandering around the neighborhood looking for your dog who slipped away during the move. If possible, make arrangements for pets to stay with friends or family for moving day to make things easier.
If you need to bring your pets along, it’s a good idea to put them in a “playroom” with their toys, water bowl, etc. while you have the door to the house open. Not only will it stop them from running out, but it will also prevent you from tripping over them while you carry the couch.
Don’t be a hero
It’s our tendency to want to do a job ourselves if we want it done right. But, when it comes to moving, that philosophy can lead to a thrown out back and a damper on your plans.
When it comes to getting large and heavy objects in and out of the house, make sure you have at least one other person ready to lift with you.
Stack from heaviest to lightest
It may seem obvious, but in the confusion of a move, it can be easy to pack your truck or van in a less-than-ideal way. Rather than playing Tetris with your boxes, try to focus on weight instead. You don’t want heavy boxes near the roof in case they fall on you or on your other belongings.
Place the largest and heavier items in the van first. This will allow you to plan the rest of the load around them, rather than having to move them around to make room.
Take a breather
As tempting as it may be, you don’t have to finish everything in one day. As long as your truck is locked and secure, it’s okay if you don’t bring in every single box. Resting throughout the day and staying hydrated, especially when moving in the summer, will help you stay sharp and ready to keep working.
Have an emergency plan
If you take precautions, you most likely won’t have to worry about emergencies. However, accidents do happen and it’s best to be prepared for them when they do. If you or a family member requires medication, make sure it’s handy and that everyone knows where it is.
Similarly, label your first aid kit and keep it with your necessities during the move.
If you follow these tips, your moving day should be a simple and safe process and you’ll be enjoying your new home in no time.