Advice From Multiple Real Estate Professionals

May is a busy and exciting month for most real estate markets around the country. Right in the middle of the busy spring selling season, these real estate bloggers have found the time to produce some excellent real estate content! Here you’ll find great advice from the pros for home buyers, home sellers and real estate agents as well. Enjoy!

Best Real Estate Articles May 2019 Tips for Winning Curb Appeal

When preparing a home for sale, sellers will do well to pay attention to curb appeal. Today’s home buyers are most often searching for homes on various real estate websites where the first image they often see is of the front of the home. So why not make sure your home makes a great impression from the start…both online and from the window of the car driving by.

Kevin Vitali, Essex Massachusetts real estate agent, shares 15 springtime curb appeal tips that will make your home stand out from the rest. Kevin points out the power of a first impression on today’s buyers. A good first impression can set the tone for a buyer’s view of the rest of your home, often to the point where they discount any small negative issues.

Conversely, a bad first impression can serve to amplify and disappointments they may have with the interior of your home. You will enjoy these easy-to-accomplish curb appeal ideas that will be sure to give your home a head start in a buyer’s mind before they even walk through the front door.

Landscaping That Improves Value

Beyond curb appeal, sellers must pay attention to landscaping all around the property. Joy Bender points out 15 landscaping ideas that can help you realize an increase in your home value, even as much as 10%! In many areas of the country, home owners can enjoy many months of outdoor living and entertainment and they’re looking for outdoor rooms that will accommodate them. Here you’ll find lots of ideas to create an appealing exterior that adds real value to your home.

FHA and VA Home Repair Requirements

If you are selling a home, chances are good that the buyer will be using either a VA loan or an FHA backed loan to purchase your home. If that’s the case then you’ll want to understand property condition requirements for FHA and VA loans. Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts real estate pro has the guide with all you need to know.

If you’re a home buyer using a VA or FHA loan, then you’ll also want to understand the basics: Who is responsible for the repairs? What can you negotiate? What are the minimal conditions and what about safety…and most importantly, what do you need to be on the look-our for while you are home shopping? You want to be ahead of the game, knowing what is acceptable to your lender.

Don’t Make These Home Improvement Mistakes!

Sometimes we encounter home sellers who have over-improved, or made the wrong improvements. That’s never something a real estate agent likes to see…because we have to be the bearer of the hard news. “No, you won’t get a good return on that particular investment, Mr./Ms. Homeseller.” In fact, some so-called “improvements” can even make it harder to sell a home.

In this informative article, Sharon Paxson, Newport Beach Cali agent, shares the ten home negative home improvements that may actually thwart your home selling efforts. From too much wallpaper, wrong flooring and room conversions, to choices that are too trendy, here are some of the items you’ll want to avoid if you’re concerned about the return on investment.

How to Know Your Roof Needs Replacement

The roofs on our homes are one of the most important structural components. The need to be treated with love and care to get the most out of them. Once a roof needs replacement they can easily wreak havoc on the entire house. By not dealing with a compromised roof you can actually create even worse problems in the property such as mold.

In the article at Realty Times, you can see how to tell if your roof needs replacement. The article is filled with great tips on discerning if your roof should be replaced now or if you still have some time.

Energy Saving Features in the Home

Smart home and energy saving devices are top of mind for today’s home buyers. There’s a reason to consider these features if you’re looking for smart home improvements. Paul Sian, Greater Cincinnati, OH and Northern KY real estate agent has written a helpful guide to choosing the right upgrades to your home that save energy and money.

For today’s home buyers, smart window coverings, smart thermostats, water monitors and smart electrical systems are all wise investments. Not only will you see lower energy costs, convenience and enjoyment in your home, you’ll improve in areas that will eventually make your home more appealing when you want to sell.

Pricing A Home: Those Crucial First 30 Days

Although there are many issues to understand in the home selling process, usually the PRICE is at the top of the list for home sellers. As it should be. After all, the home is the largest investment most people make in their lifetime.

When it comes to pricing a home, there is one very crucial part of the equation: That very important first 30 days of marketing a home. Unfortunately, many sellers believe they must have “negotiating room“, or, they often want to “test the market”. The problem is, the majority of showings on a home for sale occur in the first 20 to 30 days of the listing. While they inevitably end up reducing the price of the home, they’ve lost a very valuable opportunity.

Check out this advice from Chris and Karen Highland, Frederick MD real estate agents, It will end up saving not only valuable marketing time, but will save a seller from losing real money.

Pricing a Luxury Home

No matter where the home is located, a luxury home is usually among a select few homes on the market. More than likely it will also sell to a limited pool of home buyers. These home buyers are usually very savvy. Luke Skar, with the Real Estate Mortgage Blog, shares some wise advice about pricing a luxury home.

Far too often home sellers will price their home on erroneous things, like how much they paid for the home, or how much they have put into improvements. While these and other issues need to be taken into account, overpricing or wrong pricing will ultimately end up with an increase of time on the market as well as financial loss.

Lending Advice for Home Buyers

Shopping for a mortgage can be challenging for first time buyers, or even seasoned home buyers, because you just don’t know what you don’t know. Michelle Gibson, Wellington Florida real estate agent, offers ten great questions for buyers to ask a mortgage lender. There are not only many mortgage programs, there are many choices in down payment amounts, assistance, interest rates, fees and overlays…there’s a lot to understand before choosing a lender and a loan program that’s right for your situations.

In-Depth Mortgage Question – Do Assets Help?

As we said above, there are a plethora of mortgage programs to help today’s buyers purchase a home. Did you know that having assets can be a significant qualifying factor for some mortgage programs? Eric Jeanette, of Dream Home Financing, explains the various types of assets that can make you a stronger buyer, as well as the liabilities that will have a negative impact. Although these types of loans aren’t common, if you have less income, but have liquid assets, you can qualify for a loan.

Smart Marketing Tips for Real Estate Agents

Social Media Marketing. It’s still a mystery to many real estate agents. I know it is when I see my social streams cluttered up with real estate agent’s listings…from half-way across the country! No, even though I’d love to sell your listing in Montana, it’s probably not going to happy here in Maryland. Here are two fantastic guides to help real estate agent’s up their internet marketing game:

  • The Complete Guide to Real Estate Content Marketing, written by an expert, San Diego real estate pro Joy Bender. There’s no doubt that blogging can boost an agent’s brand, as well as their internet marketing prowess. Blogging takes time, effort and consistency, but take it from all of the agents mentioned here, it is well worth it. Agents, check out Joy’s best tips to make blogging work for you and don’t miss the many great resources within.
  • Social Media Marketing Tips for Real Estate and Business is a thorough and excellent guide from Eileen Anderson, real estate marketing pro in Simsbury CT. Learn the best practices for social media market, including Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and more. Build your personal brand with these fantastic tips!

I know! So much great real estate content, so little time.

Here’s another pro tip: Create a Pinterest board for GREAT REAL ESTATE CONTENT. Add these articles and more to use as resources for yourself and your clients. You’ll be glad you did!

Previous Best Real Estate Roundups

Have a look at these previous best of real estate articles for even more fantastic home buying and selling advice.

Karen Highland About the author: The best real estate articles from May 2019 was written by Karen Highland. Karen and Chris Highland are real estate agents in Frederick County Maryland. Chris is a Maryland State Broker for a national brokerage, eXp Realty. Karen is a prolific blogger and social media fan. Chris and Karen actively share and collaborate with Realtors® across the country in many online communities and groups. They invite you to connect: twitter, Facebook, and Chris & Karen on LinkedIn.