Real Estate Information Archive

Blog

Displaying blog entries 1-9 of 9

10 Tips To Get Your Champaign/Urbana Home Ready To Sell!

by Rose Price

As I already reported, if you're thinking of selling your CHAMPAIGN/URBANA home this spring, don't wait on preparing it to be ready!

With Housing Inventories still at their lowest levels in recent years, it's driving up demand and setting the market up for a very competitive spring season. What that means to you is this: the sooner you get your home on the market the LESS competition you will have in getting YOUR HOME SOLD! With that said, preparing your home NOW is critical. Below are 10 Tips to help you get your home in tip top shape and on the market quickly:

FIRST IMPRESSION Make your Front Door & Entry Way inviting. A splash of color in the form of potted plants on the porch, a beautiful wreath on the door, or a nice display in the foyer. Each of these can and will say "Hello, welcome" to your potential buyers. Remember, you only get 1 chance to make a great first impression and it sets the tone for the viewing of the rest of the home.

MUST BE FRESH & CLEAN Your home must be "White Glove Clean", but it also must be free of all overpowering scents and smells. If you have pets, pay close attention to pet odor's. Also be sure to clean your refrigerator regularly.

KEEP IT NEUTRAL While you may be great with color & color palettes, your potential buyer may not. Best Bet: Keep it neutral throughout the house. Stay away from ANY extreme colors or themes anywhere in your Cheshire Home.

CLOSETS & STORAGE AREAS It's very important not to overstuff storage areas of any kind. When this is done it gives the illusion that your home is not "big enough" or does not have ample storage space. Make sure closets, drawers and storage area's are all Clutter-Free!

MAKE IT UN-PERSONAL All our houses are personalized...that's what makes them our homes! But when we are putting them on the market to sell it is important to take the "personalization" out of them. Why? So that your potential buyer can "visualize" the space as "THEIR own space", and that is very hard to do with all YOUR personal belongings inside.

REPAIRS Make all the small repairs around the home that are necessary. Replacing light bulbs, cracked faceplates, broken window screens, loose door handles, etc.

LESS IS DEFINITELY MORE If possible, remove some of your furniture to make your rooms more spacious. This is where a great Staging Home Specialist can come into play! Contact our office for some referrals in this area.

DETAILS Replacing things like outdated hardware on cabinets can give you a nice boost on the home sale as well as replacing outlet covers for a new update look. Small changes, paying attention to the smaller details, can pay-off in big ways!

CURB APPEAL First impressions are VITAL! Make sure your lawn is maintained, pathways are manicured and you give a boost of color (especially when spring is still just starting to bloom!

SURPRISE! You will most likely get unannounced, interested buyers from time to time when they see a For Sale Sign in your yard. Make sure your home is Clean at all times for these Surprise Guests!

Set yourself up for the BEST success possible! Make sure your home is ready, you have the BEST Real Estate Agent on your side, your house has the BEST pricing and you'll be set to have your home SOLD in the BEST time possible!

If you are interested in more information about the benefits of home ownership in CHAMPAIGN/URBANA, please contact me. I'd be happy to come and meet with you and show you around our wonderful community!

Champaign/Urbana Real Estate Property Expert

Why Have a Champaign/Urbana Realtor Represent You?

by Rose Price

As we embark on the spring selling season I thought it might be important to go over what it means to be"REPRESENTED BY A REALTOR".   What BENEFITS you receive when you are being "represented" by a realtor instead of being on your own. When it really comes down to it, there are so many different things that can potentially go wrong in a Real Estate transaction.

A great Real Estate Agent can predict problems ahead of time and resolve them or maneuver around them to protect their client. It's all part of "representing" their clients. But if you're on your own, it can be a very tough, and often expensive, lesson to learn. As a realtor, we put your needs and interests as the #1 priority and will use all our skills and knowledge to navigate the sale or purchase,  to your benefit. That's how it works and we always do the BEST for you. Here's how it  breaks down:

 

UNDERSTANDING YOUR NEEDS- First and foremost, being represented means that we take the time to truly understand your needs backward & forward. Finding out your home needs as well as the neighborhood & community desires. We are YOUR advocate throughout the entire transaction. Unless it feels right to you, nothing goes forward. You need to understand and feel 100% about what is taking place before we will go to the next step in the process. As long as you have a realtor that is working with you, and truly understanding your needs and what you need to get from the transaction, then you are in good hands and should move ahead.

 

HAVING THE INSIDE 411- A great Real Estate professional is going to have many years of knowledge in the Champaign/Urbana housing market, community, people and just about everything you need to know about purchasing a home in their "territory". Now I don't want to align myself with "Mrs. Kravitz" but you know what I mean, your agent needs to know the 411 so that you can be confident that you are truly getting the local point of view and not the "canned" version of the area and the homes that reside there.

 

KNIGHT IN SHINING ARMOR- Having a Realtor "represent" you also means you have someone protecting you every step of the way! I'm not going to let you get in over your head in any real estate transaction. If you've given me your top price point...then that's where I'll make sure you stay. If we are having an issue with a contract, I'll make sure we get that resolved before going forward. Helping you stay within the home search criteria that you provided me is another great benefit. It is very easy to get sidetracked when looking for your perfect Champaign/Urbana home. Great realtors take the time necessary to really get to know their clients. I will protect your information and take care of you if complications arise. These are the things that are handled by a Realtor, on your behalf, when we represent you.

 

 

MEDIATOR/NEGOTIATOR- When a Realtor "represents" you, you now have your own mediator/negotiator. You can sit back and direct how the sale/purchase of your Champaign/Urbana home will go down. Think of how much easier it is to make decisions with someone else having to do the stressful business of delivering the information?!  Let me do the hard stuff!  I am a trained mediator/negotiator and know how to work within the confines of the contracts of Real Estate. I can help prepare you for this moment when you will be faced with the different scenarios that will be thrown your way. Then, once I am at that point, you will not only be ready, you will have me at the table and you will calmly be making the decisions you've already been practicing making.

BOTTOM LINE:Getting a Champaign/Urbana Real Estate Professional to work with you on the Sale or Purchase of your Real Estate transaction is a great financial decision. After all, you wouldn't try to put a new motor in your car without taking it to your Certified, professionally trained mechanic, would you? Then why try to muddle through one of the biggest financial decisions in your life without an expert that has been professionally trained to do that job? Let Champaignrose partner with you on this important venture in your life. Take a look at what my Clients have said about my service, then come in and talk to me so I can get to know you better. Together I'll help you with any Champaign/Urbana Real Estate need. 

Find Champaignrose on Facebook

Tweet with me on Twitter

Hangout with me on Google+

Why should 2015’s financial trends impact on the Housing Market be any different today than the years before it?  Good question....it would certainly seem like we’ve seen worse. But, you wouldn’t be comparing apples to apples, because you couldn’t. ALL the trends that exist today didn’t exist then....not even last year!  So, let’s take a look:

IN: IMPULSE SPENDING

OUT: SAVING

I don't think this one needs too much explaining, however we do need to understand the #1 reason 2015 is so much stronger for impulse spending than other years. It begins with the addition of APPLE PAY gliding onto the scene of an already "incredibly easy" spending marketplace which then becomes "a genie in a bottle".  It is now so easy for you to buy anything from the convenience of your phone...not even your computer...that your bank account is never going to be the same. Unless we all put some self-restraint and budgets into place, saving money in general will be impossible and saving for your down payment and home maintenance will be a hurdle that first time home buyers will never be able to jump.

IN: LUXURY HOME BUYERS

OUT: FIRST-TIME HOME BUYERS? (Not so fast!)

With rent rising at an astronomical rate across the country and student loan debt at an all time high, saving for a down payment has thus far, seemed impossible for most first time buyers and is looking very bleak for 2015.  In fact, first time home buyers are at the lowest level they have been in nearly 3 decades, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). What is driving the market? The more stable of the group....Luxury Home Buyers! With higher incomes, job security and more equity they are able to get the loans they want/need with the most desirable terms....even if they are the ones who probably need it the least. However, with rent rising at such a significant pace many would be renters may look to buy a home which will force builders to focus on building more entry level homes versus the luxury homes that have taken focus on the past several years. Rents in most states have consistently moved upward making it MORE ADVANTAGEOUS to buy than keep renting and throwing away that high dollar amount monthly/annually. The next several months will tell the tale of First Time Home Buyers for 2015....but we definitely see more FIRST TIME BUYERS entering the housing market! 

IN: FREELANCERS

OUT: TRADITIONAL EMPLOYEES 

Confused or Amazed? For some ....both! But these numbers will astound you. At present, 34% or 53 Million Americans currently work as Fixed-term Contract Workers or Freelancers!! And more and more companies are looking to move in that direction. This makes it difficult for many individuals who are applying for mortgages since many times this is NOT a stable income stream. What they need to do is make sure to document ALL work and all corresponding payments from ALL sources so that it can be turned over to the mortgage companies to be verified at the time it needs to be done.   On the other hand, this has made it very easy for a family that has chosen to have a parent stay home with children, to now have an option to work from home, with flexible hours, and still produce a great second income. Or for the older person who may have retired from a career position but now has an option of doing a “hobby” type job from their home for extra income...on their own terms. So, is it good or bad? Really depends on whom you are talking with and what side they are on.

IN: LIVING IN PLACE

OUT: AGING IN PLACE

Baby Boomers are redefining what it means to grow old!  They want to keep their homes, take in the arts, seek out new health and wellness activities and participate in all aspects of their family & friends lives....on their own terms. This means that there is a whole new need for HOME REMODELING. They want to keep the unique parts of their homes, but upgrade to include the safety and security features they need as they have grown older. Curbless Showers, Higher Toilets, and Grab Bars but still not give up the Gourmet Kitchens and Master Suites of today and don't forget technology!

With all these trends in place, and the incredible swing of the Housing Market from 2014 moving back in the right direction, the Champaign/Urbana market is looking FANTASTIC  for 2015. We are looking at a consistent upward trend with existing home sales and New Home Construction to start building again. In fact I am extremely excited to share with you this extraordinary opportunity to build your DREAM HOME in this one of a kind subdivision in MT ZION IL!  This newly created subdivision is just being marketed and I will be announcing information on my social media in the coming weeks.

If you are looking to put your Champaign/Urbana home on the market, you picked the PERFECT time! Competition is at it's lowest right now, but you must take advantage of this exclusive time frame. Give me a call today at 217-202-8843 or check out my website at CHAMPAIGNROSE.COM.  You can also get a FREE HOME VALUATION by following this link: FREE CHAMPAIGN/URBANA HOME VALUATION

CHAMPAIGN/URBANA HOME EXPERT

FIND CHAMPAIGNROSEFION FACEBOOK

TWEET WITH CHAMPAIGNROSE ON TWITTER

HANGOUT WITH CHAMPAIGNROSE ON GOOGLE+

 

 

FALL HOME MAINTENANCE TIPS FOR YOUR CHAMPAIGN/URBANA HOME

by Rose Price
It's that time of year ... before we know it the Champaign/Urbana area will be blanketed with the beautiful colors of red, orange, and gold and the temperatures will be dipping lower. That means we need to get our butts in gear and start preparing our homes to handle the demands of the upcoming cooler season. Below is a checklist of the most common Home Maintenance items that need to be done in the fall. The great news is, you can easily get them done on a weekend....and you'll be able to save a little money by tackling them now.
 

 

1. Paging Dr Heat!........It's time to get your furnace a physical. Each year you need to clean and /or replace furnace filters and wipe down any dust that has accumulated around the unit. If you hear any screeching or whines, or unusual noises with the system, you should call in to have a service technician come out and check the unit before winter season sets in. If you would like a recommendation, you can call me directly or follow this link to the people I work with and recommend: Rose's Recommended Providers.

2. Time To Get Your Mind In The Gutters! Inspect your gutters and downspouts for any clogs, and clean out the path thoroughly. Make sure this is done once the leaves are completely down from the trees at the end of the season as well. Keeping the gutters cleaned ensures that your home will not incur exterior damage to foundation walls or water in the basement. You may want to invest in mesh coverings for your gutters that will prevent any leaves or other debris from collecting in them in the future.

3. Get Yourself A View From The Top! Now that we're already talking about the top of the house we might as well stay there. It's very important to check your roof for damaged shingles before entering the winter season. Nothing is worse for a homeowner than a small drip that turns into a full blown disaster by the time they realize it's a hole in the roof! So take the time to scan the entire roof, top to bottom, looking for cracks, wind damage, curling of shingles, ones completely gone, damage to the metal flashing, etc. Once you have done your evaluation, have it repaired as soon as possible. Again, if you find yourself in need of a professional Roofer, give me a call or follow this link:  Rose's Recommended Providers.

4. Walk the Walk Baby! You really need to take a walk around your home, inspection every walkway surface. Damaged walkways are a hazard everyday, but bad weather makes them even more dangerous. Look for large cracks, uneven payment, loose bricks or pavers, loose railings, etc. Once you've made your list head over to your local home improvement store and get to work. The little time it takes to fix could potentially save you thousands in bills later on.

5. CHILL OUT.....or maybe we should just say FREEZE! Make sure to shut off all your exterior irrigation systems and drain the lines of the systems and hoses. Make sure to use a styrofoam faucet cover for your outdoor faucets and make sure all valves are in the closed and off position.

6. Gather 'Round the Fire. Fall and Winter are great for having fires in the fireplace, but making sure you have cleaned out the soot and creosote buildup is critical. It is also important to clean out any cobwebs and check for any bird nests or any other unwanted pests. I recommend calling in a professional if you have any questions at all.

7. Keeping the OTHER Wood fires Burning. Wood-burning stoves have made a huge comeback over the past couple years, but like fireplaces, need to be inspected to run efficiently and safely. Be sure to read and operate by the instruction manual and maintenance as required.

8. I'm Sealing Away.... This can be a big job, but a very necessary one that can help save some green on the heating bills for the year! Walk through your home and seal any gaps and cracks around windows and doors with weather-stripping or caulk. If you are going to be using caulk- especially in places like joints, corners, & places protruding from the wall- this will need to be done before the temperatures get too cool.

9. Keep it Humming! With winters dry air many of us keep the humidifier going on a constant rotation. To ensure efficient operation make sure to clean the plates or pads every 30 days or as recommended by the manufacturer. This also helps cut down on re-circulating moisture into the air that has any mold or bacteria in it that has built up in the humidifier itself.

10. Ready....Stop, now Reverse. Help with your heating bills by changing the direction of your ceiling fans. Reverse the direction of the fans and create an upward draft that redistributes the warm air from the ceiling. Also make sure to clean the blades of the fan regularly with a soapy water mixture. Dust and bacteria builds up on the blades daily and regular use also moves that through the air as well.

11. It's a Safety Dance. Make sure your family is safe. A home safety check is a ritual that should be done twice annually in every household. Test your Smoke Detectors & CO Monitors, Inspect or Install Fire Extinguishers, Review or Make a Fire Escape Plan for your Family and rid your home of any fire hazards.

12. A Few Final Notes...... Make sure to embrace the season! Put up a great fall wreath on the front door, buy a few Mums from a local store. Visit a local orchard and pick some apples for baking a yummy Apple Pie and get ready for the pumpkins!  

Selling Your Champaign/Urbana IL Home

by Rose Price

It's spring and you've always been told that this is the perfect time to put your Champaign/Urbana IL Home on the market. That's TRUE, but what else should you focus on to insure that your home sells quickly; at the highest possible price? Here are a few things to consider when you're looking objectively at your Champaign/Urbana IL Home:

You know you have an incredible house that you've put your loving touch into, but what else can you let potential Buyer's know?

 1. Are you living in an area with spectacular views of wooded lands, water, historical significance?

 2. What is your neighborhood like? Is it extra friendly where neighbor helps neighbor when someone's in need?

 3. Your local schools....what are they like, can you highlight something specific with the teachers, teaching philosophy, awards?

 4. Do you have outdoor living space? Great patio or deck, outside stove for cooking summer meals, plenty of space for entertaining?

5. Is your yard exceptionally large or beautifully landscaped?

6. Do you have a corner lot?

 7. Have you recently put on a new roof, siding, shingles, windows?

Then look inside your home and do the same.

1. Do you have a fireplace and hearth that is different than many they may see in other homes?

 2. What about your kitchen, the heart of your home? Granite or Marble Countertops? Designed by a Home Interior Professional? Center island with vegetable sink?

 3. Is your home friendly to the environment? Have you used energy efficient windows & doors, do you have solar panels, is the flooring bamboo or cork?

 4. What about storage space, mud rooms, bonus rooms?

 5. Are there beautiful hardwood floors under your carpets?

                      

The graph above shows the percentage of home buyers that felt these "Hidden Gems" were worth every penny they cost in the overall sales price of a home.

 These are all things that you want to highlight about your home, that shows the buyer the difference and special "gems" in your home versus other ones they may look at... and why your home is the only one they'll want to buy. At ChampaignRose, I look at all these special selling points with you to develop a marketing strategy that optimizes these features and in turn highlights them for potential buyers.

 If you plan to put your Champaign/Urbana IL home on the market  this spring, NOW IS THE TIME. Give me a call and I'll be happy to come to your home and evaluate all these points with you, and will share up to date market conditions here in Champaign/Urbana. Buying & Selling homes in the Champaign/Urbana IL area is what I do best! I've lived her my entire life, and participate in many community projects and events. I also am a consistent Top 1% Producer in the Champaign/Urbana area. That means I have exceptional local knowledge, most current real estate information  which will give your home the exposure and fast sale you deserve.

Champaign/Urbana IL.....Snow, Snow and ........More Snow!

by Rose Price

                                                               

It's pretty amazing looking at all the snow the Champaign/Urbana IL area has gotten this year. Even though we are not at record totals for year to date, the combination of snow accumulation mixed with the extensive number of days with frigid wind chills makes this a record year already.

All we can do is get out and enjoy what mother nature has blessed us with, and hope that the chirping sounds of spring will be here soon.  In the meantime, get out and enjoy some of the greatest sledding hills around!  Here are the Top 5 for the Champaign/Urbana IL area:

Homer Lake Forest Preserve

* Crystal Lake Park                                                                      

* Morrissey Park

* Orchard Downs

* Centennial Park

I'm personally yearning for the sailing season to begin.....but in the meantime......I'll be heading for the hills and outdoor fun with my friends!

How to Throw a Great Super Bowl Party

by Rose Price

Although the Super Bowl is not going to be as much fun this year, with our beloved Chicago Bears out of contention, we are still going to "whoop it up" and have a great time.  Like always, we are going to decorate, and make lots of great food....but we are also adding a great dimension by having our own CHAMPAIGNROSE SUPER BOWL PARTY CONTEST!  What does that entail, you ask?  Not a whole lot, I came up with the set of questions below to have all our family, friends and acquaintances answer and post their answers to our Facebook Page by Saturday, February 1 at 5:00 pm. Make sure to LIKE ME ON FACEBOOK when you're there!

                                     We challenge all of you to have the most correct answers!

                                                

THE QUESTIONS:

1.Which team will win, and what will be the final score of game?

2. Who will be the Super Bowl MVP?

3. Who will be ahead at half time, and what will the score be?

4. Which Team will have the most rushing yards? How many?

5. Which QB will throw the most touchdown passes, and how many will he throw?

                                               

THE FOOD:

We all have our favorite party foods, but let's face it....if you serve this....you'll go down in Super Bowl Food history!!  Add in a few other appetizers, sweets and a fabulous, signature Super Bowl cocktail, and you'll be on your way to having the Best Super Bowl party ever!!

   

THE DECORATIONS:

Let's face it...you've got a ton of choices here, so we went with some of the basics.  But get creative, and have some fun!

 

What are your predictions for the game???

5 Reasons Why You Need To Close On A Home Before Years End!

by Rose Price

Are you debating  whether or not to make an offer on a home before the New Year begins?  Well....STOP deliberating and get out there and submit the offer!  Between changing lender rules, mortgage rate hikes and the 2013 tax benefits;   closing before the end of the year can mean significant financial benefits.  

Here are five ways you WILL benefit by closing on a home before the end of the year.

1)  New Year means new lending rules.  Lending rules are changing on Jan 1st, and that means it could become more difficult to get a loan. The new rules will allow you to borrow less, at your same income level!  The current 2013 mortgage borrowing rules allow for a 45% total debt-to-income ratio.  This ratio does go down to 43% in 2014,  meaning you will have to make or reduce your debt in order to buy the same house you are currently living in.

2) Avoid rising interest rates. Although mortgage interest rates are still pretty attractive, they are up 1-2% over last year during the same time period.  The Mortgage Banker's Association is predicting that mortgage rates will rise to around 5% in 2014.  If you decide to buy now and the rates drop...you can always refinance, but if you wait...you are stuck.

3) Maximize tax deductions.  Although this is the most commonly thought reason for closing on a home before years end, it is also a very important one.  You can start deducting mortgage interest and building equity immediately.  Also, because some closing costs and points are deductible, you can start deducting them the year you purchase the home,  so they can be included in your 2013 tax return!  If you wait even 3 days into the new year you will not be able to take any deductions until years end of 2014.

4)  Easier financing.  Are you waiting for home prices to decrease?  Don't!  It is quite possible that the mortgage rule changes for 2014 will make it more difficult to get financing.  So if you are waiting to "save" a few bucks waiting for home prices to decrease, you may put your ability to purchase a home in jeopardy,  if you cannot secure a mortgage at all!

5) Lower Sales could mean higher inventory.  Look at it this way...it's the "After Christmas" sale...before Christmas!  Even though 2013's theme was low inventory and higher home prices, the fourth quarter has always seen a slowing down of the housing market, and 2013 is no exception.  Housing sales have declined since September, so the inventory has increased, but the constrained inventory still means double digit year-over-year gains.  What does that mean to you...you may secure a GREAT DEAL IN DECEMBER!

At ChampaignRose, I are here to answer any and all of your real estate questions, help you find the home of your dreams or get your home ready to be put on the market.


Source:  RISMedia

What are the Benefits of House Hunting During the Holidays?

by Rose Price

When you're writing out the holiday shopping list, maybe it's time to put your name on it and a home as the gift. If you've been considering buying a home, here are a few reasons why shopping for one during the holiday season can benefit you.

Yes, it may involve you really prioritizing your time; the holiday season is a busy time. But if you can make time to house-hunt and you have already been pre-approved so you know how much home you can afford, then this could be a very good experience. And it may lead you to a new home in time for Christmas!

 

Like many businesses, the holiday season can cause things to slow way down. That's often the case for real estate. However, that doesn't mean you won't find eager sellers hoping you'll make an offer on their homes. Even though there are parties, kids' social activities and end-of-the-year work commitments, real estate sellers are still ready to let you step inside their homes to see if you'll find one is a good fit.

When real estate slows down, that means mortgages slow down. So this is a good time to get a mortgage. There's a chance your loan will move through the process faster. That doesn't mean you will have lax guidelines, rather it means that if there are fewer loans to process, yours can move along faster.

Some say that you have fewer options because inventory drops during the holiday season. While that may be true, it doesn't mean that every seller takes their home off the market. Sellers with their homes on the market during the end-of-the-year months are typically serious sellers. There may be tax reasons motivating a seller to sell before the end of the year which could create greater opportunities for negotiation. There's likely a sense of urgency on the seller's side.

Often home prices are lower in December than in other months. If you wait until the spring, you're likely to wish you'd, at least, done some house-hunting. Industry reporting services often show home appreciation slows in the fourth quarter, making homes more affordable.

Since it is a busy time of year, you may find that there aren't many buyers shopping for homes, which is exactly why this may be a good time to house-hunt. Fewer buyers could mean a great opportunity for you to make an offer and negotiate a favorable price. However, fewer homes to choose from could mean you have more difficulty finding precisely what you're looking for. But too many homes can also create a no-win situation by confusing and overwhelming you.

Shop smart by making a list of the "must-have" and the "really-would-like" items. Carry the list with you or use a home-buyers' app to keep it on your smartphone. It's much like a holiday gift shopping list - better to know who you're buying for, how much you want to spend, and, at least, an idea of what you'd like to get that person. Same goes for a home.

Simplify the house-hunting process by having some written notes about what you intend to buy. Of course, things do change, so be open to discovering that dream home that has something on your list you never knew you needed or wanted. Your list will just help you evaluate and prioritize which things in a home are most important to you. Then instead of unwrapping this holiday season, you might be wrapping up and packing up your belongings!

Written by - Realty Times

Displaying blog entries 1-9 of 9

Syndication

Categories

Archives