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Fall Housing Market Update for Champaign County!

by Rose Price

Fall is a great time to buy your dream home! Less competition from other home buyers, pleasant weather, and year end tax breaks are just some of the benefits of buying during the season. The strength of the housing market in Champaign County this September reflected strong buyer demand and confidence in our area's economy. The stats for the month show that home sales increased with this buyer demand and inventory of homes was able to keep up, reflecting a robust and healthy market.

 


Champaign County saw a 5.9% increase in the number of homes sold in September 2017 compared to September 2016, with 199 sold this year compared to 188. The communities of Champaign, Urbana, and Mahomet all saw more homes sold in September of this year, as compared to last year. While the month of September had a stronger showing throughout the county, the year-to-date number of homes sold is down 1.2% at 2,042 from the same period last year. Median home sale price for single family homes and condominiums is down 1.4% from $154,325 in September 2016 to $152,200 in September 2017. The average number of days on market for all home sales was at 62 days in September 2017, compared to 58 in September 2016.

 

 

Although these stats reflect benefits for buyers in particular, sellers should take advantage of the tight inventory of homes on the market and high buyer interest.

 

Now is the perfect time for Champaign County homebuyers, especially first time buyers, to take the plunge. Interest rates are below 4%, according to the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation.

 

If you are interested in Buying or Selling your Champaign County home this fall, give Champaign Rose a call today or visit my website at http://www.champaignrose.com/.

 

 

Information from Champaign County Association of REALTORS®

 

Tips for Spring Home Buyers and Sellers in Champaign/Urbana!

by Rose Price

Spring is fast approaching. As the flowers bloom and the weather warms, home buyers and sellers start looking to enter the real estate market. If you are ready to Buy or Sell you home in Champaign/Urbana this spring, it is important to be prepared and know what to expect. Here are my helpful tips for spring buying and selling in our area.

 

Spring Buyers!

As a buyer, your first step is to know the Champaign/Urbana market. Research what housing options are available to you as well as the current list prices. Before you begin to seriously search for your new home, it is important to have your Financing situated ahead of time. This allows you to accurately know what you can afford and makes you a more attractive buyer when you enter negotiations with a seller. Realize that the spring market means increased competition from other potential buyers. Once you find your dream home, you want to stand out from other offers. Consider writing a personal letter to the seller expressing why you love their home and know that it would be a good fit for you and your family. Also, remain flexible during the negotiation process to ensure that you can get the home you want.  


 

Spring Sellers!

As a seller, you need to know Your Home's Value before you list. This will enable you to price your home correctly. Since other sellers will be listing their homes this spring, you want to stand out from the competition. You can do this by improving your home’s curb appeal, staging your home, and completing any home improvement projects. Consider some updates to your home that will give you a great return on investment. To get top dollar for your home and sell it quickly, work with Champaign/Urbana’s Top Realtor!






Champaign Rose is here to help you buy or sell this spring!  Give me a call today or visit my website at http://www.champaignrose.com/ to get started today.

Congrats! You’ve decided to sell your house in the CHAMPAIGN/URBANA area! After all the years of love in your home, though, you want to make sure that you get the most for it. All homes go through wear and tear that might not be noticeable to you over the years but will surely stand out to potential home buyers. In order to make the best sale for you and your family, you need to decide what repairs and upgrades should be done before listing your home on the market. It is important to go through each room with a critical eye and see what fixes are necessary. 

Selling your home and negotiating the sale can be a daunting process but you do not need to go through it alone! A great Real Estate Agent is there to assist you along the way. When deciding what fixes should be made, your real estate agent can provide you with crucial help. They will know what changes are absolutely necessary before placing your home on the market and what can be negotiated in the final deal. 

There are several simple things you can do that won’t cost an arm and a leg and will help your home look its best! We have great suggestions on ways that you can maximize your sale. Here are the Top 9 Home Repairs or Upgrades to Make Before Selling Your Champaign/Urbana Home!

Add a Fresh Coat of Paint – The fastest and cheapest way to make your home look inviting to potential home buyers is adding a fresh coat of paint. Go through your home to see which rooms really need it. It is not necessary to repaint every room home. For the ones in need of some sprucing, choose light, neutral colors that will appeal to everyone. Also, make sure to remove all wallpaper! Wallpaper can be a great accent to any room but everyone’s tastes are different. By removing the wallpaper and using light paint colors, the new owners have total flexibility in how they want to make the home their own.

Fill in Nail Holes and Cracks – This one may seem obvious but you should fill in all nail holes and cracks. This simple fix will help any room appear new and will avoid buyers feeling like they have a lot of work that needs to be completed. Spackle the holes and cracks, sand it, and add a fresh coat of paint.

Provide Adequate Lighting – Lighting throughout your home can have it looking its best. Make sure that all of the rooms in your home have adequate lighting. Replace any outdated light fixtures. Ensure that all lights and switches probably work. If needed, fix any potential electrical issues that might kill the sale. Along with lighting, natural light is very important. Use light drapes on the windows that allow for maximum sunlight to come in and really make the room shine!

Hardwood Floors – Hardwood floors are attractive to potential buyers. These floors can also take a beating over the years. You do not need to spend a ton of money replacing the floors though! Make the floors look brand new refinishing or polishing them! 

Kitchen – The kitchen is truly one of the most important rooms in the home and is something that buyers definitely make decisions based off of. Full kitchen remodels are expensive and not necessary when selling your home. It is important, however, to make some simple fixes to make the kitchen look its best. Be sure to refresh the paint and replace any outdated or broken fixtures. If necessary, refinish or paint the cabinets. Granite and marble countertops can help sell your home. If there is money in your budget, replace the countertops to automatically make your home more attractive. Before showing your home, make sure that your kitchen is clean and uncluttered.

Bathrooms – Like the kitchen, the bathrooms in a house can make or break a deal. You want it to look brand new! The first step is a deep cleaning. Scrub the grout and replace any missing tiles. Fix or replace any plumbing issues. Ensure that the lighting in the bathroom is bright.

Maintain Appliances – Make sure that all appliances currently in the home are functional. Appliances are an added bonus for home buyers, but no one wants the stress of knowing they are going to have to be soon replaced. Provide any warranties for the appliances to your real estate agent. By having functional appliances, you are showing pride in your home.

Functionality – Along with functional appliances, make sure that everything else in your home is in working order. Replace broken doorknobs and locks. Have a creaky door? Remove the squeak by applying WD-40 or a natural oil to the hinges. If your home has a garage, make sure that the garage door is properly working.

Exterior – Now that the interior of your home is looking its best, it’s time to tackle the outside! After all, the exterior of your home is the first thing that buyers will see. You want your home to look like you take pride in it! We often get storms in Illinois that can cause wear and tear on the outside of the home. Repaint or replace broken siding. Refinish porches, patios, and fences. Keep the landscaping clean and attractive. You want the buyers to be excited to see the rest of your home as soon as they arrive.

For more helpful Home Selling Tips, give ChampaignRose a call at (217) 202-8843 or check out or website at http://www.champaignrose.com/.

THE TEN MOST COSTLY HOME SELLING MISTAKES & HOW TO AVOID THEM

by Rose Price

The Ten Most Costly Home Selling Mistakes & How To Avoid Them

Want to get the most money for your home?

Then avoid these costly mistakes.  

The past few years the American Real Estate Market has been marked with bad news, but it seems like most markets are have turned that around; Prices are increasing, there are historically low interest rates for buyers, and the past selling season was one of the best in recent years.  

BUT

Before you list…do a little research or list with an experienced LOCAL Real Estate Agent!  Knowledge is power!  To help you here is a list of the 10 most common sellers mistakes—avoiding these, can save you thousands of dollars!

1. Selling your Home on your own

Attempting to sell your home on your own is a brave move. Before you take that step, consider everything that you're going to need to know & do in order put your home on the market, market your home, get buyers into see your home, make sure you abide by all the regulations and state codes, negotiate possibly many things along the way, then set-up all the appropriate people who need to be involved in the sales process just to close.  You really do need the expertise of a professional. Don’t believe me?… Check the numbers, those won’t lie.  For instance, homes without representation remain on the market longer and end up selling at a lower price than those with a professional at the helm. A professional agent is also their to protect you every step of the way.  

2. Not Pricing Your Home Properly

Overpricing isn't good for you! Under-pricing isn't good either! Finding the sweet spot is what it's all about.  These can be costly errors on both ends.  It is absolutely critical to understand the local housing market. This is why you NEED the experience, knowledge and expertise of a LOCAL Real Estate Professional. And I'm distinguishing between a professional and a part-time, dabbling in real estate. A Professional, like myself, that has been working & living in the Champaign/Urbana market for 20+ years, continually works on updating their own knowledge of the Real Estate market on a whole...and more importantly, what's going on in the Champaign area. They can guide you to a successful sale and protect you & your asset along the way.

3. Neglecting Repairs

This is fairly black and white, you will lose money if you don’t remedy repairs before you list your house. It’s less costly to fix things ahead of time.  You don’t want potential buyers to see these problems during a tour of your home.  When they do, the negotiation process will begin and the price you're asking will come down. If they find something larger after the sale...they will come back to you.  

4. To Clutter or Not?

Clutter can kill a deal. So declutter...it's that simple.  Everywhere!  It will help your home feel more spacious. declutter the kitchen countertops,  declutter overstuffed closets,  declutter ALL of your shelves, declutter EVERYTHING! It wont’ cost a thing other than your time and a little elbow grease and it will have BIG benefits when it comes time to sell.  


5. Listing a Vacant House

Home Buyers generally like to see a home with furniture in it, it makes the home feel warm & lived in. If it's absolutely necessary that you list your home vacant, you may want to list the services of a Home Stager or make a small investment in a few pieces of rental furniture to make the house look "homey". Sources show that vacant homes do take longer to sell and usually sell for a lower selling price. So your small investment will most likely pay for itself when your house sells.  

6. Letting your personal feelings get in the way

Don’t take negotiating personally.  This is a business transaction, probably one of the biggest of your life.  Take your personal feelings and put them aside, or let your Real Estate agent handle the negotiations while you take a break from the room. 

7. Failing to complete a full set of disclosures

There are sellers who lose money simply because they were afraid to disclose their home’s imperfections. Always Be upfront and forthcoming about all of your home’s issues. It will save you money and time, especially if the buyers end up uncovering problems themselves, AND THEY WILL.  Don’t hide anything!

8. Timing the Sale of your Home

Even a sale that misses its schedule by one day can cost you tens of thousands in extra taxes. Don’t let this happen. Talk to your accountant in advance to determine if any long-term capital gains tax breaks apply, and then time your sale accordingly.

9. Overlooking extra Expenses at Closing

Home sellers burn thousands of dollars by not requesting and confirming a list of fees and expenses prior to closing. Review the Estimated Closing Cost statements with your real estate agent before it’s time to hand over the keys. Then, request these fees in advance of closing day.

10. Using Lousy Listing Photos

This is a big pet peeve of mine. Don’t expect to sell your home for top dollar if you’re using amateur photos in your listings.   More than 90% of all buyers start their home search online, so make sure your Listing Photos are excellent…This means A LOT OF GREAT PICTURES! First impressions are important, especially when selling a home.  You won’t get a second chance to make a GREAT IMPRESSION, so don’t skimp on your photos.  

Considering selling your home in the Champaign/Urbana Area?  If you'd like more tips on Selling Your Home give Rose Price  a call at 217.202.8843.  

Selling homes is my passion and I'd be happy to assist you with this exciting time in your life. 

Champaign IL Top 3 Style Preferences of Home Buyers!

by Rose Price

Champaign/Urbana IL Home Owners if you're looking to "Freshen-up Your Decor" and get your homes on the market, take note of the Style Preferences below! In a recent promotion taken of prospective Home Buyers by Realtor dot com, buyers were asked to vote for their favorite type of decor as part of their “Get This Look” promotion. The styles below won overwhelmingly over any other home styles. 

The following is a breakdown of the TOP 3 STYLE PREFERENCES of BUYERS:

Good-Bye Hollywood's Spectacular looking but "don't touch" decor! Follow these tips for an easier to sell home!

INVITING: This is described as a welcoming atmosphere that includes fun bar ware, plenty of seating, and a gather-worthy kitchen that can serve as the LIFE OF THE PARTY!

RUSTIC: This look is for those who prefer natural elements: wood, stone, water and light. This design style usually incorporates organic materials from the outside/ inside for a perfect balance.

BEACHSIDE CHARM: This design has a relaxed and casual feel, often incorporating terra cotta tile, patio umbrellas, sun decks, and scattered shells.

Meanwhile, the design styles least favored in the survey: Regal (a design that uses fine fabrics and antiques), Urban, eclectic Mid-Century Modern, and Earthy.

Happy decorating...Look for more tips to come here on my Blog and on my Facebook Page!

If you'd like more information about homes for sale in the Champaign/Urbana IL area, please give me a call at 217-202-8843 or visit my website at www.champaignrose.com.

Resource: Realtor Mag.

MT ZION IL SNEAK PEEK! New Developments Coming Soon!

by Rose Price

COMING SOON!

Exciting New Developments In Rural Mt. Zion

Modeled after the nationally acclaimed Prairie Crossing Development in Grayslake, Illinois, and located in rural Mt. Zion, Illinois, Woodbine Park Prairie Estates is a 194-acre conservation community, featuring glacial topography, lakes, and wildlife.  Strategically located between Ft. Daniel Conservation Area and Spitler Woods State Park, the community is designed to safeguard a key environmental corridor for Macon County. 

The area was developed with a focus on rejuvenating the land, which is now back to it’s pre-European Settlement days.  There has been extensive wetland, wildlife, woodland and prairie land restoration, complete with a Big Creek stream bank stabilization project.   In addition to Mesic prairie grasses and animals, Woodbine Estates is home to bald eagles, herons, sparrows, hawks, deer, coyotes, muskrats, and possums.  

At Woodbine Estates, people live in ways that are healthy not only for themselves but also for the environment around them, which is important due to the miles of trails that wind through the property, including forty-five acres of protected common ground.  Occupants can look forward to many outdoor activities like canoeing, fishing, swimming, ice skating, walking, biking and cross country skiing. The “Field of Dreams" baseball field on the west end of the property will no doubt provide hours and hours of summer entertainment.  The homeowner's declaration ensures and protects standards that will enhance and protect each occupant's investment, along with the preservation of nature, wildlife, trails, wetlands, and green ways.

Despite Woodbine's private, rural charm, it is still conveniently located near many modern amenities like the Strand Movie Theater, Shopping, the Decatur airport, Schools, and plenty of tourist activities, like the nearby Amish Community and Shelbyville Lake.   

If you want to live the good life in a quiet natural setting--Woodbine Prairie Estates may be the place for you.  If you would like more information please give me a call 217.202.8843 and I would be happy to answer any of your questions. 

 

Getting your Champaign IL home ready for a walk through can be frustrating, especially when you're still living in your home, but keeping your home clean as you take all the necessary steps to sell your home is key; things like removing the personal items, staging, and ramping up your curb appeal.  Hiring a professional cleaning service isn't a bad idea, but those expenses add up over time.  So, here are some tricks to help you clean your house in a hurry, and  you'll be ready for a walk-through or a surprise visit from your inlaws, at a moments notice!

The trick is to start with the big rooms and move to the small:

1. Kitchen 15 minutes

  • Remove Clutter from all counter tops, cabinets and tables.
  • Clean Counters and Cabinets Wipe down counters and cabinets with all-purpose cleaner, speed up your process by brushing all crumbs and such on the floor (you'll sweep later).
  • Wipe Appliances Wipe down the fridge, dishwasher and cooktop areas as well as microwaves, toasters, etc.  
  • Load Dishes into your dishwasher.
  • Sweep and Mop Starting from the back and working your way to the front sweep those crumbs up and mop.  

2. Living and Dining Rooms 10 minutes

  • Clean Up The Clutter put anything that's out of place in boxes or drawers...if you put it in boxes, you're going to have to neatly hide the boxes somewhere.
  • Ditto for the Dust! Dust tables, fireplaces, mantels, window blinds and shades.  If any dust happens to fall on the floor, no worries, you will vaccuum at the end.  Don't forget to dust the ceiling fans and bookshelves... get yourself a long armed duster.  
  • Make that Glass Sparkle! Use glass cleaner to wipe down anything made of glass.
  • Ramp up the Vaccuum Now... vacuum all the dust you just put on your floor and on to the next room. 

3. Bathrooms 10 minutes

  • Start With Sink and Tub wipe down the sink and shower/tub with a good all purpose cleaner.
  • Clean the Toilet Thoroughly scrub the bowl with a brush, finish by scrubbing the outer area with a rag.
  • Wipe Mirror with your glass cleaner.  Start from the top corner and work your way down in a circular motion, think karate kid, "wax on...".
  • Wash The Sink Scrub the spots around the sink and fixtures with a brush to free up the grime, then finish with a rag and cleaner.  
  • Wipe the Shower/Tub Use a damp rag to wipe the shower and tub, if there are any tough-grimey spots, use a hard cleaner and brush to remove it...but don't scrub too hard. 
  • Mop the Floor Use a mop to quickly clean the floor of your bathroom, starting at the far corner and then working your way back to the door.

4. Bedrooms 10 minutes

  • Remake the Beds Remove the linens and replace with fresh ones so they look clean and crispy.  Don't forget to tuck the sheets in at the corner, go for the 5 star hotel feel, neat and crisp!‚Äč
  • Clear the Clutter Everything out of sight! Use drawers, baskets, the closet...you can organize more later.
  • Clean Furniture Wipe down furniture with a moist cloth or use a vacuum with hose attachment to suck up the dust.
  • Dust everything! tables, furniture, lamps, closets, shelves, ceiling fans, mirrors...everything.

Try these steps before your next showing, and be amazed at how quickly this can all be done.  If you are no longer living in the home or will be out of town you can hire a cleaning service and have this done for around $150. Check out my website for area businesses who are trusted individuals or companies who will provide these services in the area:  Preferred Vendors

For more Home Selling tips you can visit my website or check out my Facebook page.  Better yet, give me a call or stop in to see me!  I've been helping people Buy and Sell homes in the Champaign/Urbana area for 20+ years very successfully....and I'd like to do the same for you!

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Rose Price
Landmark Real Estate
One East Main Street, Suite 200
Champaign IL 61820
217-202-8843
217-352-1933
Fax: 217-378-1281