Saturday, April 30, 2011

Spring Cleaning Tips for Selling Your Home

Five Tips for Spring Cleaning


Spring is here and for those selling their home or getting ready to put their house on the market, there’s nothing quite as beneficial as doing a great “spring cleaning” job to not only make your home look great, but to get rid of some of that clutter that could distract someone coming to see your home.


Here are five spring cleaning tips that will help you sell your home.


1: Curb appeal becomes as important as ever when the weather turns nicer and buyers are more likely to spend time outside looking at the exterior of the house and the property. Make sure to have a well-maintained lawn with all the leaves gone, the grass mowed and the hedges trimmed.


Spruce things up by buying some inexpensive, yet colorful flowers and spread fresh mulch in flowerbeds. Fill in any bare spots on your lawn with sod or seed. Make sure to also clean your gutters, wash your welcome mat and put away any rakes or winter shovels that clutter the yard.


2: The phrase “I don’t do windows” should never apply when selling a home. While a REALTOR® may tell you that homes show better with the blinds or curtains up, this will not be true if the windows are dirty. A clean window brings more light into a room and allows buyers the chance to see what the view will be when they look out of their potential new home. It’s important to clean both the inside and outside of all windows until they are streak free and spotless. This includes all sliding glass doors, garage windows and outside doors.


3: Pay close attention to the “little” things that might draw the eye of a prospective homebuyer. Go around your home with a pad and pencil and inspect each room for things such as small holes in the wall where a painting used to hang, outlets that are missing a cover or doorknobs that are loose and squeaky. Also, be sure to check all of the caulking around sinks, faucets and tubs, as well as any grout in tile counters or bathtubs. As you take the time and the small amount of money to fix these items you reduce the reasons for someone not liking your home.


4: Power wash your driveway, walkway, siding and deck. You don’t need to invest in the money of buying a new power washer as they are easy to rent from stores such as Lowe’s. Power washing removes layers and years of dirt and grime from stone and cement, including mildew stains from the winter. Power washing the porch, a fence or deck clears away all the dirt and debris and makes the home instantly seem cleaner. If the outside of your home looks dingy, you may be setting the impression that you didn’t keep up the home itself well, so make sure to have everything looking top notch.


5: One of the first pieces of advice you will get from your real estate agent is to reduce clutter in your home. Spring cleaning is the perfect excuse to get rid of things you don’t really need. Go through all your closets and bag up all the clothes that don’t fit, are out of style or you simply don’t wear anymore and donate them to a charity. Take your old books, the kids’ toys they no longer play with and those kitchen knickknacks and hold a garage sale. A de-cluttered home is always more attractive to the homebuyer.



Bill Mercer can be reached at 406-581-5574 Prudential Montana Real Estate is an independently owned and operated member of Prudential Real Estate Affiliates, Inc., a Prudential company. Equal Housing Opportunity.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Buy or Sell First?

Consumers Are Returning to the Real Estate Market with an Age-old Question: Buy or Sell First?


Residential real estate in Ennis Montana is gaining stability in concert with the recovering U.S. economy. Consumers, drawn by one of the most attractive buyers’ markets on record marked by historically low interest rates and lower home prices in many areas, are returning to the market to move up, trade down, improve location and otherwise enhance their share of the American Dream.

When it comes to home buying, the ideal situation would be to find a new home, just as you receive an offer on your existing home. You would then be able to close concurrently and move into your new home a few days prior to closing on your previous home. This does happen more often than not, but anyone looking to buy a new home needs to consider all the possible scenarios.

Should you buy or sell first? There are many schools of thought on this subject. Ultimately, it depends on you and your situation. For instance, can you afford to pay two mortgages in the event your previous home does not sell by the time you move? Would you consider a bridge loan (a short-term, high-interest loan that lets you borrow against the value of your old home to covers the bills until you secure the new, larger loan)? Are you willing to move twice to find the home of your dreams if you sell first and can't find the dream home fast enough? This is where the advice of a real estate sales professional is invaluable. Real estate sales professionals know the current market conditions. They are trained and experienced in working with home buyers and sellers to determine an ideal time to buy and sell.

It is generally less stressful to sell your home first, because you won't have to worry about owning two homes at one time. The market will dictate how long it will take for your home to sell, as will the property’s location and the time of year. As a rule of thumb, it is a good idea to put your home of the market as far in advance as possible when purchasing a new one. But, since interest rates are low and confidence is returning to the market, there’s a good change your home will sell faster if priced properly. (Again, your real estate professional’s advice is critically important here.) In that case, you may want to purchase a new home first.

What if your present home sells before you find a new one, putting pressure on you to find the right house more quickly? You may then decide to make an interim move or request to rent back your home for a specified amount of time as you continue to look for your new home. Those may be worthwhile options if you have your heart set on a specific location or type of home or if you are purchasing a home that is under construction.

If you buy a home before selling your present home, you may end up with two mortgages. Under those circumstances, you may be able to apply for a bridge loan to assist you in making two mortgage payments until you sell your first home. Your real estate sales professional can assist you in finding a lender.

So should you buy or sell first? This is a challenging question regardless of real estate cycles, yet your own circumstances and a knowledgeable real estate professional will help you make the right decision.

Bill Mercer can be reached at (406) 581-5574. Prudential Montana Real Estate is an independently owned and operated member of Prudential Real Estate Affiliates, Inc., a Prudential Financial company. Equal Housing Opportunity.

Bill Mercer can show you :
Ennis Montana homes for sale
Ennis Montana ranches for sale
Ennis Montana land for sale
Montana real estate

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