When putting your home up for sale one of the first things you should consider is to contact a real estate agent. Set up interviews and see who you think will work the best for you, personality wise and their experience. Ask them to bring you a list of the homes they have sold in the past 6 months to a year, and then do a comparison to your home. What style homes did they sell, the location and the price. Do not be in a hurry, check out their Facebook, website and background. You are not committed to a Realtor until you have signed the contract to hire them. Once you do that, you can be committed for up to 6 months on some contracts and they can get up to 6% commission of the selling price of your home.
Compare Your Home For the Right Price
Do your homework. Go online and look up homes that have sold in your area and that are comparable to your home. Try to stay as close as possible to the square footage, bedroom and bathroom count, one story or two, pools etc. Your real estate agent should be able to provide you with comparables that have recently sold in your neighborhood.. Once you have a price average for your area, you may want to bring your price down just a bit to attract buyers. Or you can offer to pay part of the closing cost as another incentive. Your Realtor can help you with this.
Showing It Off
Home Staging is great for presentation and bringing out the best of your home. Walk around your home and make notes of things that attracted you to the home. Is it the beautiful deck you added on to the pool area? New Air Conditioner, added on a room or simply the style itself that makes living there so cozy. Ask some friends over and to give their thoughts on your home. This will come in handy later for pointing out the attributes to the potential buyer, the listing and a virtual tour.
Clean, clean, clean! There is nothing worse than someone coming in to look your house over and having to stumble over clutter or want to hold their nose from a bad odor. Do a through cleaning from top to bottom. Add fresh flowers, candles that are mild in perfume to various rooms. Hide the kitty litter box, pets water and food bowls and have pets outside if possible. Someone allergic to animals will not want to stay.
Windows – Give them a good cleaning inside and out. Open the blinds, curtains and shutters and let in natural light all over the house. Having a showing at night? Replace your light bulbs with a higher watt bulb.
Bedrooms – make sure they are clutter free and the beds are made. Clear off the night stands and bureau’s of any papers, books, make-up etc. Put kids toys in the closet and give the room a neat appearance. Think of a hotel room when you walk in. Only the necessities should be showing. Open the curtains and let in the natural light.
Bathrooms – clear off any make-up, medicine, tooth brushes, toothpaste, mouthwash etc and make the sink and bathtub clutter free and shine. Add fresh towels and clean shower door or curtain. Don’t forget to shine up the faucets and mirror too.
Kitchen – Open up the counter space by removing appliances like toasters, blenders, food processors etc and putting them in a cupboard. Wipe down the cupboard, counters, sink, etc and make what needs to shine, shine. Take down any magnets, pictures or kids art work off the refrigerator and give it a clean look. Give the inside of the oven and stove top a good cleaning as well as the microwave. Yes, the buyers may want to peek inside these.
Living Area – Fluff up those pillows on the sofa, clean any rugs and carpet. Dust the furniture and check to see if the drapes, shutters or blinds need a good cleaning or maybe fresh paint added on those shutters. If you have glass doors, make them clean and its a nice day open them up.
From the moment your potential buyer steps out of their vehicle, they are accessing your home, by the curb appeal. Make that first impression count and be welcoming. Have your landscape well manicured and kept up for the duration of your home on the market. Bushes trimmed, grass mowed and walkways edged and any flower or veggie planter boxes are full and pretty. When they walk up to your front door, have an attractive knocker or door bell and be sure that front door is appealing. A fresh coat of paint can make all the difference. Something we may not think is important, may be to the buyer. Even upgrading the numbers on your house can make a small difference.
Tell the World
The notes you have made about your home and the staging all done, its time to take pictures and video. Your real estate agent should be able to help you with these two very important details. Pictures and video should be clear and show off your home inside and out to its best. Add as many pictures as you can to your listing and other places online. With the Internet at our fingertips, buyers are going online to search for homes and you do not want to miss out on this opportunity to show off yours. Your real estate agent will include you in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and there are more places online like Realtor.com, Trulia, Homes.com, Zillow, Yahoo Real Estate to name a few. Don’t forget Craigslist and Facebook, Twitter and where you share on Social Media sites. Have your Realtor meet with potential buyers and be sure they can afford to purchase the house before showing your home so you are not wasting you and your Realtors time.
When you are filling out a claim for an accident with an auto insurance company you are required to answer questions about the accident and fill out some forms so your claim can be processed. Here are some funny ways some people answered those questions…
• The other car collided with mine without giving warning of its intention.
• I thought my window was down but found it was up when I put my hand through it.
• An invisible car came out of nowhere, struck my car and vanished.
• The guy was all over the place. I had to swerve a number of times before I hit him.
• I pulled away from the side of the road, glanced at my mother-in-law and headed over the embankment.
• The accident occurred when I was attempting to bring my car out of a skid by steering it into the other vehicle.
• The accident was caused by me waving to the man I hit last week.
• I was on my way to the doctor’s with rear-end trouble when my universal joint gave way, causing me to have an accident.
• As I approached the intersection, a stop sign suddenly appeared in a place where no stop sign had ever appeared before. I was unable to stop in time to avoid the accident.
• I didn’t think the speed limit applied after midnight.
• The telephone pole was approaching fast. I was attempting to swerve out of its path when it struck my front end.
• When I saw I could not avoid a collision, I stepped on the gas and crashed into the other car.
• Coming home, I drove into the wrong house and collided with a tree I don’t have.
• The indirect cause of this accident was a little guy in a small car with a big mouth.
July and August bring on the rainy season in Florida with many thunderstorms and lots of rain pouring down in a short amount of time. This can cause street flooding quickly. When driving in rain, drive slower than normal and be aware of other drivers who may lose control and slide into your car on slick roads. The day can turn cloudy and dark suddenly, put your lights on to make it easier for other to see you. Driving through water can cause you to get stuck and may ruin your car.
Learn more about what this does to your car and other tips – Driving Through Flooded Streets Causes Unseen Damage to Your Car
Check out this video taken in winter time in Florida when these storms and heavy rain are not so popular!
Flooding Overtakes South Florida Streets
Your Deductible is the amount you can expect to pay for a loss before your rental insurance policy takes over any cost for you. When you are choosing your deductible, which can be from $100.00 and up, take into consideration the dollar amount you figure for your possessions.
Once you have that figure calculated add a bit more for extra’s. A good way to start this, is to plan out a well detailed inventory list, and while you are doing this list be sure to add to it any receipts, id numbers etc and a little more for things you’ve forgotten or under-priced
Your Actual Cash Vale or Replacement cost is also considered when choosing your policy. Some insurance companies will reimburse you either way but considering that somethings depreciate in value you will be in a better position to go with replacement verses actual cash.
If your total dwelling is destroyed you may want to look into Total Cash Coverage. This is also where your inventory list you have kept in a safe place will come very handy to you. This will cover you for the total amount of renter’s insurance.
Some renter’s insurance Premiums are paid annually, while other companies allow you to pay quarterly or even monthly.
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Photo Courtesy of FreedigitalPhotos.net
Following these tips below can take you toward lowering your cost on your auto insurance policy.
1. Avoid accidents and pay close attention at intersections. Auto accidents involving seniors often occur at intersections. Left turn lanes with their own arrows need special attention, yielding as well. When stopped, always keep your tires pointing straight ahead. If you were rear ended while yielding and your tires are turned you could be propelled into traffic.
2. Always try to flow with the traffic and drive at the speed limit. Driving too slowly can trigger dangerous “road rage” in less patient drivers and be as dangerous as speeding, especially when entering or exiting interstates or freeways. It .
3. Keep current on the traffic laws relating to new traffic designs.Many violations include failure to yield right-of-way, improper turning or incorrect lane changes.
4. Sit high enough in your seat so that you can see at least 10 feet in front of your car, advises the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. If your car seat does not adjust to allow this, add a cushion, this will make it easier to see pedestrians and bike riders, and reduce problems from oncoming headlight glare at night.
5. Senior drivers can refresh their skills and knowledge by taking a refresher driving course. More than two-thirds of states mandate auto insurance policy discounts for such courses, and many insurance companies offer the discounts voluntarily.
6. Consider fit and comfort in your new car. Seat belts that comfortably fit over your shoulder and low on your lap will keep you safer. Automatic transmission, power steering and power brakes require less physical effort.
Have questions? Contact us today at 863-453-3903