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Welcome to Century 21 News Today
YOUR UPDATES ON MARKET TRENDS, CONDITIONS & REAL ESTATE INFORMATION
Did You Know?
…That according to MLS Regional Statistics to August 31st, 2007
- The number of listings year-to-date 10228 for 2007; 10136 for 2006—up 1%.
- The number of Sales YTD: 5162 for 2007, 4892 for 2006: up 6%.
- Total Sales Dollar Volume for 2007 YTD: $1,068,678,619; up 9% compared to 2006.
- Number of Expired Listings YTD: 2938 for 2007; 2940 for 2006—%’age change 0.
- Average Sale YTD for Niagara Region: $206,560 vs. $200,177 in 2006—up 3.19%.
(Source MLS Statistics Report, Niagara Association)
A home inspection is typically part and parcel of any real estate transaction today.
A seller may obtain one to identify the home’s strengths and weaknesses; information that can be used to craft marketing and pricing strategies.
On the other hand, a buyer would likely have a contingency that says if the home inspection reveals significant defects, he is not bound to his original offer.
In either instance, the seller should make certain preparations so that the property is ready for inspection. First, the home should be clean and tidy. You know what they say about first impressions. And although the inspector will consider a myriad of factors, it doesn’t hurt to start on a good note by presenting a well-kept home. Also, the buyer will most likely accompany the home inspector. You especially want the buyer to see a clean and presentable property.
If you have pets, particularly a dog, make arrangements for him or her to come with you while the inspection is being conducted. You do not want the pet to be a distraction or a nuisance.
Next, provide easy access to all rooms including the garage, basement, attic and crawl spaces. All doors should be unlocked or keys should be provided. Withholding access can delay the final report or worse, make it look like you are trying to hide something.
In order to check the working order of the home’s systems and appliances, the inspector will need to have gas, electric, water and other utilities on.
In the days leading up to the inspection, take some time to pull together relevant paperwork and information. This may include a roster of repairs made on the home, receipts for appliances, and invoices for remodeling or renovations. For example, if you recently replaced the roof, the buyer and inspector will want more than your word. An invoice for the job will show when the work was completed and provide some idea about the quality of the materials used.
Things You Need to Know
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Buying? 4 Variables to monitor once you decide you are in the market.
For anyone looking to buy a home, watching the real estate market is a requirement. It can help you make informed decisions and be a better consumer.
Here are four variables to monitor.
1. Use newspapers and the Internet to see where sellers are setting their asking prices. The laws of supply and demand ultimately determine where sellers can set their limits. Knowing what is the ballpark asking price for the type of home you want in a certain neighborhood is key to knowing a good deal when you see one.
2. Find out what homes have sold for, which could be above or below the asking price.
3. Watch how long homes are staying on the market. In a seller’s market when consumer demand is high or mortgage rates are favorable, homes may sell very quickly. In a buyer’s market, when the supply of homes is greater than consumer demand, properties may linger.
4. Doing your homework on mortgaging and rates ahead of time so that you can “lock in” a rate can save you money in the end.
5. Investigate tax rates. Find out what the tax rate is in the town where you are looking to buy. Property tax can be a sizeable bill, so it is important to include it in your budgeting.
In addition to watching these factors yourself, a good Realtor® follows all these variables as a matter of course and will be able to give you insights and information to help make you a better buyer. As well, a good Realtor can help you analysis, give insight and help clarify your direction.
Want your kids to remember all the fun you had on summer vacation? Then start a family vacation journal.
Put a few key photos from the trip in a special album or notebook. Next have each family member write down their favorite part of the trip on the following pages. It can be a great tradition and keepsake.
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Common Selling Mistakes
There is an art and a science to selling a home. So if you’ve never done it before, there is a pretty good chance you’ll make a few mistakes. Here are three common missteps.
1. Pricing the Home. Of course you want to capitalize on your investment and turn a profit, but setting the price too high can be a crucial error. Potential buyers may be put off and not even come to look. It could also cause the listing to linger on the market and as the weeks drag on the property can seem less and less appealing.
2. Being Inflexible. Some sellers say they positively won’t sell for less than “X.” But in the long run, is a few thousand dollars worth losing a buyer over? The accommodating seller has a better chance of seeing a deal through to closing. This can also mean being flexible on things like timing, closing dates and other negotiating points.
3. Sidestepping the Prep Work. No home is ready to show right off the bat. Some time and money should be put into getting the property ready for sale. Repairs need to be made. Carpets need to be cleaned. Rooms need painting. Rushing the home to market can cost you in the end.
One of the best ways to avoid these pitfalls is to hire the right seller’s agent. A real estate professional has the expertise you need to dodge these selling blunders. Advice on market trends, negotiating tactics and staging the home, are a few of the insights a Realtor® has to offer.
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