HOMESELLING TIPS

Attract Real Buyers, Sell Quickly

George Wilkinson, your Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices professional wants to sell your home quickly and at the highest price possible. Your home must be exposed to qualified buyers who are serious about finding a home.

What do serious buyers look like? They’re ready to buy and show it by getting prequalified by a lender and knowing their price range. They have criteria to meet, including likes and dislikes. They have a moving date in mind. They’re represented by a real estate agent. They’ve already eliminated homes using the Internet and your home is on the short list. They can make a solid offer on the right home today.

Serious buyers aren’t nosy neighbors, open house explorers, or people who can’t or won’t make a realistic offer. Serious buyers won’t waste your time because they don’t want to lose the opportunity to buy your home to another buyer.

George's job is to network, advertise, and market to make serious buyers aware of your home. How attractive your home is to buyers is up to you. Here are five ways to help your agent attract buyers to your home.

  1. Verify market prices with George Price your home for today’s market reality.
  2. Stage your home to best advantage. Declutter, depersonalize, clean it, paint it, and enhance curb appeal with fresh landscaping.
  3. Fix everything that’s a problem. No leaks, chips, smells. Move-in ready condition is what most buyers want. Don’t give buyers room to argue price due to condition.
  4. Do something extra for your home. Some updating, fresh paint, new appliances, or new countertops can work wonders.
  5. Be a serious seller. Just as a serious buyer is ready to buy, show you’re ready to sell by offering your home at an attractive price, being flexible about moving dates and other terms, and making your home available for viewing with their agents.

FINANCIAL TIPS

Five Ways to Get a Better Mortgage Rate

Mortgages are the largest monthly expense most homeowners will ever have. Getting the best mortgage interest rate starts with basics. Here are five ways to get the best rate possible.

  1. Check your credit. Before you shop for a home, review your credit reports. Correct any negatives you find, pay bills on time, and don’t open any new accounts. A change in your debt-to-income ratio can cause you to pay more in interest.
  2. Choose the right loan. Choose your loan based on current market conditions and how long you plan to stay in your home. The longer you plan to stay in your home, the better off you’ll be with a fixed-rate mortgage. It takes most borrowers five years just to earn back their original closing costs in equity.
  3. Compare rates and lenders. A loan officer can offer certain loan packages. A mortgage broker can shop your deal around to lenders for you. Remember, rates can change several times a day, so compare loan packages at the same time to get the best deal.
  4. Consider terms. The true cost of the loan is the APR or annual percentage rate, which includes fees from the lender. All terms are negotiable, so don't be afraid to ask what a particular fee is for and if it can be reduced or eliminated. Also, the costs for a 10, 20 or 30-year loan will vary. Shorter terms mean larger monthly payments, but faster equity.
  5. Don’t wait for rates to go down. Rates are currently below four percent and likely to go up instead of down. Instead of worrying about rates, work on how quickly you can build equity quickly. Pay $25, $100, or $500 extra per month and you'll more than offset any rate you'll pay