basketball goal

What You Can’t Take With You Once You Sell Your Home

It’s possible for the drama to occur if you take something from your home once you sell it without talking to the buyer first. It could affect the sale; it could also result in a lawsuit against you. Here are some guidelines as to what can’t go with you once you sell your home.

  1. Anything nailed, bolted, or mounted. Things such as built-in furniture, fences, and storage sheds should stay behind. As for AC units, if it is placed in a window, you can take it with you. But, if the house has been modified for something, it should stay since it is technically a fixture. However, if you insist on taking it with you, be upfront and tell the buyer as soon as possible.
  2. We’re not talking about house plants, of course, but the ones outside. There may be an exception if the plant was a special gift, but most will not allow you to dig up plants or trees since they are a part of the property.
  3. Light fixtures. Don’t be tempted to take light fixtures with you, as you will be leaving behind a bunch of wires hanging from the ceiling. The buyer is purchasing what they saw the day they viewed the property; if the seller tries to change something after that day, it is illegal. If there is a light fixture you simply can’t part with, take it out of the home before the potential buyer visits.
  4. Window treatments. Even if they’re custom blinds, they should stay. Curtains are considered personal property because they easily slide off rods. Rods and blinds, however, are attached to the house and are considered a part of it. Same applies to mirrors – if they are hung on the wall, they are personal property; bolted ones should stay.
  5. Items anchored in the ground. If a basketball hoop is cemented into the ground, it is to be sold along with the house; the same goes for swing sets.

Tips on How to Sell Your Home During Summertime

Selling a home during the summer is a bit different than selling during the rest of the year. However, there are some small steps you can take that will make a big difference and will hopefully help you nail the sale before the season is over.

  1. Don’t take a short cut with the electric bill. Have your AC unit serviced and clean your ceiling fans before showing your home in the summer. It may even be a good idea to keep your home’s temperature cooler than what it usually is. You’ll want potential buyers and their agents to stay in the property rather than rush through it due to it being too hot inside.
  2. Keep some water on hand. It’s easy to work up a sweat touring a home, especially if it has more than one level. A nice gesture is to leave some bottles of water on the counter in a bucket or bowl of ice. You could even take it a step further and make a pitcher of sweet tea or lemonade, both would certainly make a great impression on potential buyers!
  3. Maintain the yard. Weeds can pop up very quickly during summertime, so make sure the hedges are trimmed and the grass is cut. If you want to enhance curb appeal, try adding some flower pots or hanging baskets. Keep the lawn watered and the sidewalk swept. Make sure there are no limbs or bushes blocking the views of the windows. Sweep patio and balcony areas, and feel free to update any patio furniture with a fresh coat of paint or new pillows. If you have a pool, make sure it is clean.
  4. Don’t turn off the lights. Even on the brightest of sunny summer days, you’ll want to leave the lights on while your house is being shown. This includes lights in the closets and appliances.
  5. Show off some of your yard work. If you have flowers in your yard, a nice way to add some elegance to the home is by cutting some and placing in vases around the home. It gives a house that “home-like” feeling many buyers are searching for.
sell your home

The Best Secrets That Will Help You Sell Your Home, Pt. 1

Did you know that there are quick ways to sell your home? Here are five of the best-kept secrets when it comes to selling your home.


  1. Adjusting the price. Once you determine how much your home is worth, take off about 15-20% off of the price. Buyers will come in with multiple bids and bid up to the price way over what it is worth.
  2. Empty the closets. Remove half the stuff from your closets then organize what is left. Keep closets and storage spaces neat and tidy, as buyers will more than likely take a peek and see what they have to offer.
  3. Brighten the environment. Good lighting is crucial in selling your home to a potential buyer. Take down your drapes, clean your windows, switch out lampshades, increase the wattage of light bulbs, and cut the bushes outside to let the sunshine in. Make your house bright and cheery to the buyer’s eyes.
  4. Hire the right broker for you. Make sure the man or woman hired for the job is fully informed – they must monitor the multiple listing service, know which properties are available on the market, and know about the competition in your neighborhood. It doesn’t hurt to have a broker who is tech savvy and has access to different tools that can help get your home sold.
  5. Keep your pets away. Not everyone is a fan of dogs and/or cats. Remove pet food and bedding, as well as litter boxes and toys, from your home before showing to a potential buyer. Send pets to a border or friend or family member while the house is being shown.
moving out

Moving for a Job

There are so many people in the world today who have moved for a job, whether with a new company or for a new position/task. If you’re willing to relocate but are unsure as to whether it is the right move for you, here are some tips to consider before it’s time to make your final decision.

  1. The company may cover moving expenses. The IRS is no longer deducting moving expenses for a job (this is to last from 2018-2025). However, private industries appear to be doing well and many are now offering to pay moving costs for employees that have to relocate. Many businesses, both small and large, have relocation reimbursement policies…some firms even change their policies on a frequent basis for competition. The amount you’re offered for moving will depend upon your role in the company, how much the move will cost, and the amount you have requested from them. Currently, it is cheaper to relocate a renter rather than a homeowner.
  2. Renting may be the best choice for now. Buying a home is a lengthy process and your company will most likely not have time to wait around for the task to be completed. Rent could help you save money in a new town or city. If you were previously a homeowner, a history of mortgage payments could help you get a great deal. The landlord may also be willing to negotiate a lower monthly price, a reduced deposit, or a shorter lease term, as renting has declined from previous years. Maybe you could talk to him or her into letting the first month be free!
  3. Stay flexible. Most companies give employees and/or prospective candidates two weeks to accept or turn down an offer with four weeks to fully relocate. It can be stressful trying to not only pack up for the move and prepare for this new chapter but to also list your current home for sale. Talk to a realtor about alternatives in regards to how you can sell your home as quickly as possible.

How to Choose the Best Offer on Your Home

Once your home is on the market, offers will start to come in. Depending on what you’re selling, offers may take some time or come in at a rapid pace. When faced with the choice of choosing which offer is best, there is no need to be overwhelmed. Here are some tips to help you select the offer that best suits your needs.

  1. Take time to comprehend the process. Keep in mind that an offer is negotiable, so you have the option to accept it, reject it, or ask for modifications (known as a counteroffer).
  2. Create your standard. Determine ahead of time which terms are top priority for you and let this guide your decision. If price is the most important aspect to you, you may need to be flexible with the closing date. If you’re worried as to whether the buyer will be able to get a mortgage or not, you may want to ask for a prequalified or cash buyer.
  3. Make a review process. If you’re certain your home will receive several offers, talk to you agent about creating a time frame for the offers to come in. This will give the agent time to market the home to as many buyers as possible. It also gives you time to review each offer as they come in.
  4. Don’t let personal feelings get in the way. Treat this as a business transaction; that’s what this is after all. If someone doesn’t like the kitchen or a room you have remodeled and have therefore offered a lower amount, don’t take it to heart. It’s still a good sign that the buyer is interested, even if your style isn’t their preference. Remember to negotiate.
  5. Go over each term. Is the buyer asking for appliances or other property to be included in the sale? Is the earnest money sufficient? Have they been preapproved for financing? Is there another contingency involved? Read over all terms so you know what you’re getting into with each offer. If something is a deal breaker, you may need to walk away and move on to the next best offer.
  6. Don’t be afraid to get creative. Find out what is most important to the buyer and see what you can do to meet their needs so you receive the best offer.
Mistakes Made While Selling a Home

Common Mistakes Made While Selling a Home, Pt. 1

Selling a home can be a great step to make in your life, bringing with it a new chapter full of promising new beginnings. It is possible, however, to make some mistakes along the way while selling. That’s where we come in! Here are five of the most common mistakes made while selling a home.

  1. Refusing to let go. Depending on how long you have lived in this home as well as the memories that have been made there, you may find it difficult to detach yourself and your emotions. Don’t let this get in the way when selling your home. Think of its strengths and weaknesses, and try to view your home from the perspective of a buyer. Remember, although the house will be gone…your memories made there will last forever.
  2. Skipping out on repairs. Most homes that are put on the market need some repairs. Depending on the severity of the issues present, some buyers may not want to purchase a home until those repairs have been made. If it’s something simple, such as needing a new HVAC unit or replacing a few shingles on the roof, do this before listing your home. Fixing small issues before listing makes the home look even better to potential buyers.
  3. Failing to prepare for photos. It’s common practice these days for buyers to go online and look at photos of a home that is on the market before contacting an agent. Before listing your home, talk to your realtor about taking photos. Clean the home before taking photos, clear away any clutter, and remove your personal items so potential buyers can see the basics.
  4. Failing to stage your home. Once your home has been cleaned for photos, walk through it and ask yourself if the current furniture placement shows your home in its best form. If rooms fell crowded, go through items and donate or sell them. Contact your realtor and get their opinion on what would look best for each room when a potential buyer visits.
  5. Failing to maintain the outer appearance. It’s not only what’s on the inside that counts, but also what’s on the outside. If your home looks dirty or run down from the outside, this could be enough to cause a potential buyer to keep on driving past it. Does your home need a fresh paint job? Is the porch swept? How are the walkways? Does your lawn need mowing? All of these issues should be addressed before listing.
Selling your house

Advice You Should Ignore

Everyone has an opinion and when you are buying or selling a home, you’ll most likely hear a few. Here are some common phrases you should ignore.

  1. “Only sell in the spring.” Many people like to assume that spring is the best time to sell a home. However, winter (especially in January) is a good selling season if you live in states that aren’t subjected to harsh winter weather (like Florida). Every area is different, so don’t hold off because someone told you to wait. The busier the season, the busier buyers will be. Keeping this in mind, there will also be more sellers and more competition. Even in the seasons that aren’t as busy, someone will still be looking for a home.
  2. “Go to an open house, you’ll find the buyer there.” While it is possible to meet a buyer at your open house, many attend these events simply to look. The buyers that are more serious about the purchase will ask for a private showing.
  3. “Save your money by paying less in commission.” There is a lot of work realtors do when helping someone buy and sell a home. Their job duties extend past simply listing a home. Paying the realtor their commission helps them obtain posters, flyers, yard signs, as well as plan and host an open house event at your home.
  4. “List your price and don’t budge on it. Wait until someone offers to pay it.” Setting the price super high then waiting for someone to agree to pay it may not be the best choice. Homebuyers steer away from overpaying for a home. This hurts you, as the longer your home sits on the market, the more buyers will question why it hasn’t been bought yet. Set a fair price and be willing to negotiate.
  5. “This is what the market will look like next year.” The market is unpredictable and changes all of the time. Anything can happen!
real estate deal

How to Close Your Deal Successfully

Whether you’re closing a deal on an apartment, your dream, a beach condo, etc., it’s certainly an exciting time to be at the end of the road so a new chapter of your life can begin. Don’t get too overwhelmed in the paperwork and legalities, as there are some ways to close your deal in a successful manner without causing too much stress upon yourself.

  1. Have faith in yourself. Be confident; this can carry over into the deal. If you believe in the deal, it will happen. State what you wish to happen and claim it, aim for it, make it your goal. Work hard to achieve that goal. Every detail and step may not go as planned but stick to your guns to ensure your wants and needs are received.
  2. Don’t complicate things. Don’t hound buyers with info, facts, figures, etc. This won’t truly impact their decision when the time comes. Maintain a straight-forward, direct, personable persona. Make things as simple and easy as possible. This is best for both parties involved.
  3. Listen to your potential buyers. Know what they want and what their conditions are; work to help them get what they want and need in a home. Don’t be afraid to ask questions to get a better idea of what they’re searching for and what you can do to help them receive this. If they express any doubts, reassure them. Don’t ignore any issues; face them head on and help get them resolved in a quick manner.
  4. Be yourself. Stay honest and genuine. Show your best to them and chances are, you’ll get their best in return. Good energy promotes good energy!
buying a home

Why You Shouldn’t Buy or Sell a Home Without a Realtor

While it’s not entirely impossible to buy or sell a home on your own, that certainly isn’t recommended. What you will find to be the most helpful during the buying or selling process is hiring a realtor to help you navigate through the process and ensure you get what you’ve been hoping for from the buyer or seller. But if you’re seriously considering doing this on your own, consider these reasons below as to why it’s best to have a realtor by your side.

  1. They’re experts. The world of real estate can be complex; it even has its own language! A language that a realtor can speak in a fluent manner. Not to mention they’re great at handling the ins and outs of buying and selling, as it requires quite an extensive amount of paperwork – forms, reports, disclosures, etc. These professionals can help you get the deal you’ve been dreaming of without delays and pricey mistakes.
  2. They’re quicker at finding the home for you. Not to say you don’t have the ability to go lightning speed on your keyboard and find some houses, but realtors, when given info about your needs and wants in a home and neighborhood, can easily find the right match for you. Sure, you can search listings on your own time; however, realtors have access to more listings that may not even come up in a typical search, as they may not be advertised. Realtors are great at finding local hidden gems!
  3. They’re tough when it comes to negotiations. Meaning that they don’t back down easily! It’s possible for competition, cut-throat antics, cash offers, and bidding wars to occur. Would you be prepared to handle this on your own? Realtors certainly know how to negotiate. They also help design a purchase agreement that will allow adequate time for inspections, contingencies, etc.
  4. They have connections. Realtors know plenty of mortgage brokers, real estate attorneys, home inspectors, home stagers, interior designers, contractors, etc. All of which can help you when buying or selling a home.
  5. They abide by a code of ethics. It’s important to know that not every real estate agent is a realtor. A realtor is a licensed real estate salesperson who is a member of the National Association of Realtors. What’s the difference, you ask? Realtors are held to a higher ethical standard and must abide by a code of ethics in order to maintain their job.
  6. They’re more than just a salesperson. Realtors work hard and complete many different tasks in order to receive their commission. They drive around, check listings for you, spend money out of their own bank account to market your home if you’re selling it, conduct research to ensure you’re getting your money’s worth, etc. Not to mention they work almost all hours of the day and late into the evening. If you have any questions or concerns, they address them and they keep you informed. You’re not just a commission to them; realtors truly care about their clients.