June 16, 2017

4 Tips For Getting Your Home Ready For The Summer Market

Selling Your Home In The summer

Let us help you get your house ready to sell this summer! Here are 4 tips that can increase the likelihood that you will sell your home more quickly.

Freshen Curb Appeal

Make sure the grass stays cut, bushes and trees are neatly trimmed, the windows are clean, and the driveway, walkway and siding (if relevant) are nicely power-washed. These are just the minimum things to do to make your home look appealing to a potential buyer.

Declutter & Clean

If your home is full of "stuff" it's hard for most people to look past the clutter and envision their belongings in your home. Clean off counter tops, put away an excess of knick-knacks. De-personalize the space by taking down most (if not all) family photos. Clean baseboards, dust surfaces and remove smudges off walls, doors and light switches. Decluttering and cleaning not only makes things more visually appealing but also can make each room look larger.

Keep It Light

Keep everything fresh and bright. Natural light makes everything look brighter so make sure to highlight these features with clean windows, open blinds and lights on.

Always Be Show Ready

When you have your home on the market you have to be ready at a moments notice to leave your home so people can come view it. That means you have to be diligent about keeping your house spotless at all times. Anything less can put you at risk for losing a potential buyer.

For more guidance and tips, contact us today!

Kathy Smail: (301) 580-9094

Kelly Williams: (301) 325-5308

Posted in Selling
May 23, 2017

9 Steps to Buying the Home of Your Dreams (what to expect)

9 Steps to Buying The Home of Your DreamsAre you thinking of buying a home right now? It's that time of year when many people think about doing just that; but often times they are not sure of the process or what to expect. 

Buying your dream home can take a lot of time and effort. It can also become overwhelming if you’ve never bought a home before or haven't done so in a long time. 

Knowing the steps to buying a home will help you manage your stress level while providing you with the information necessary to make the best, most educated decisions possible. 

With these 9 easy steps (and the right Realtor), your home buying experience can lead to the home you’ve always wanted.

Step 1: Find Money

Before you start looking for a home, you need to find out how much you can afford. It's best to know in the very beginning what you can afford instead of asking a Realtor to show you homes, or doing countless searches online, only to find out you have more OR less buying power than you thought.

So, first things first. Contact a mortgage lender who can help you determine the max price you can afford to spend on a home. If you don't have a mortgage lender, you can talk to our preferred mortgage lender partner, Pat Culpepper for Caliber Home Loans

Step 2: Obtaining a Copy of Your Pre-Approval Letter

You need a pre-approval letter from a mortgage lender so your real estate agent and the seller of the home you find knows you're able to buy the home now. This letter gives you credibility when you put an offer in on a home. Put yourself in the sellers shoes. Who’s offer would you take more seriously? The one with a pre-approval letter or the offer without one. Pre-Approval means your credit, income, assets and personal information have been verified. This process can take some time, but is worth the wait. 

"Pre-Approval," is not to be confused with being "Pre-Qualified." Getting pre-qualified is an informal process and your information isn't verified. While it can offer a general idea of what your buying power could be, that's about it. Sellers often won't take pre-qualified buyers as seriously either. Just keep this in mind.

Step 3: Time to Find a Home

This is the FUN PART! If you haven't already done so, contact K & K Homes Group or call us at 301-774-5900. We will help you find the perfect home. We do this by first learning from you what your “must-haves” are, your “nice-to-haves” and your “wish list”. Then we immerse ourselves into finding those homes that meet your criteria. What YOU want is our top priority and it’s what keeps us focused on finding the right home for you within the price range you can afford. Once you find the home you want, we guide and represent you through the entire buying process; which includes working with you to negotiate a deal with the seller to get the home for the best possible price given all of the variables (home condition, location, comparables in the area, market conditions etc…). 

Step 4: Home Inspection

Most of the time your offer is contingent upon a home inspection. This is done quickly after you and the seller come to an agreement. You can pick your own home inspector or ask for a recommendation from your realtor at, K & K Homes Group. The inspection helps identify structural damage and things that need fixing. The contingency helps you by giving you the protection to renegotiate your offer on the things that need to be fixed or the opportunity to withdraw your offer all together if significate damage is revealed during the home inspection. 

Step 5: Supplying Documents to the Mortgage Lender and Title Company

After all the renegotiations are settled, it's time to choose the right mortgage loan with your Mortgage Lender representative. Lenders have a wide range of loan options to choose from. You and your Mortgage Lender representative will discuss your options and guide you to choosing the best loan for you. Be prepared to provide and complete a lot of paperwork to  supply to your lender and know that it can take some time, but it can all be worth it in the end when you get the keys to your new home.

You'll also be working with a title company for title paperwork. If you don't have a preferred title company, you can go through our preferred title company partner, Jonathan Levy, at Capital Title.

Step 6: Get Homeowners Insurance 

Just like owning a car and having to have car insurance. When you own a home you need to have homeowners insurance. There's a variety of extra's you can add to your real estate coverage. Ask about your options. Also, talk to your agent about combining auto and homeowners insurance for a multi-plan discount. You can shop around for price estimates until you find what works for you. You can also go through our preferred insurance partner, Dan DiCocco at All State Insurance.

Step 7: Final Walkthrough

After all the paperwork is processed, it will be time to schedule your settlement day and final walkthrough. The final walkthrough allows you the protection to confirm the house is how it should be and that any repairs that may have been required from the home inspection were completed.

Step 8: Closing

It's settlement time and this is where you sign all the paperwork. You'll sign all your loan documents involved in the purchase of buying your dream house at an office. Often, you'll sign these documents accompanied with your real estate agent, mortgage lender representative and title company representative. In some instances, the sellers are there too.  

Step 9: Get the Keys

This is the time for celebration! You’ll be handed the keys, and be able to finally move into your dream home!

While the process might seem overwhelming, it doesn’t have to be. If you have any questions or need help with buying your dream home, don't hesitate to contact us at 301-774-5900.

 

April 12, 2017

Top 3 Reasons To Make Outdoor Landscaping A Home Selling Feature

Landscaping for Selling Your HomeWhether you have a small or large space to work with, landscaping and making enhancements to the outside of your home can be a huge factor in how fast and how much you sell your home for. Here are three reasons you can make selling your home easier from the outside in.

Landscape For A Return on Investment (ROI)

When a home is nicely landscaped, it can raise your property value by as much as 12%. This can also help increase your resale value when its time to sell. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on landscaping. For example, buying materials in bulk is less expensive overall. You could even share the cost with family or neighbors for even more savings. By investing 2%-5% of  your home’s value into landscaping can easily give you a return on investment of over 100%. 

Less Time on the Market 

First impressions happen when someone drives up to your home and sees it from the outside. If there are many similar homes for sale in your area, at about the same price range. The choice may come down to which home has better landscaping over one that is less impressive. Great curb appeal can make all the difference in the world. Plus, it can help you sell your home faster. So why not get your hands a little dirty (or hire someone to do it for you) and make your property something to admire so you can attract interested home buyers.

A Place to Gather with Family and Friends

Even if you’re not selling your home anytime soon, it’s great to have an outdoor area where you can entertain. Create a space for you, your family and friends to kick-back and relax. The space does not have to be complicated. Adding simple white lights to trees around you, colorful potted plants and comfortable seating, may be all you need to enjoy outdoor living as much as indoor living. Perhaps you want to take it further by creating a stone patio with built in gas grill. Investing in projects like these can really increase the value of your home when you are ready to sell.

For more tips on getting your house ready to sell. Contact: Kathy @ (301) 580-9094 or Kelly @ (301) 325-5308

March 15, 2017

Selling Your Home Fast: Top 5 Home Staging Tips

If you’re looking to sell your home fast, the greatest success will come from staging. The right home staging means winning against the competition. To be sure to keep your Realtor in the loop. In the meantime, getting your house market ready is easier than you think if you follow these staging tips:

1. Declutter and Depersonalize

These two big D’s are often forgotten; decluttering and depersonalizing. The good news is that these can be done at the same time if you're in a hurry to get your home on the market. Pack away anything you want to keep that offers a “footprint,”of who’s been living there. Store away family photos, knickknacks, personalized artwork and so on. Sell, give away, discard or donate the items you don't want to keep anymore.

2. Sparkling Clean

Cleaning your home to prepare it to be sold makes sense, right? Why not save time and your back and hire a professional cleaning service. These professionals clean in places that are often forgotten about (e.g., cleaning under the refrigerator or kitchen cabinet doors). The end results will have your home sparkling and smelling clean without the need of candles or air fresheners. 

3. Curb Appeal

First impressions are crucial when is comes to selling your home. Give your exterior a facelift by applying a few simple tasks. Use a power washer to clean the exterior of your house. If you don’t already own one, you can rent one at your local home improvement store. Another way to improve your curb appeal is landscaping. Trim, cut, weed, plant, and mulch the flower beds in your front yard.   

4. Make Repairs

Making home repairs doesn’t have to mean major renovations, but it does mean everything should be functioning in proper working order. An easy method is to walk around your house and note everything that needs repairs. This ranges from leaky faucets, blown light bulbs, cracked/peeling paint, squeaky doors or running toilets. 

5. Style

Styling your home throughout with neutral hues and avoiding bold colors is often the best direction. Use elegant and soft linens in the bedrooms to offer an inviting and tranquil setting. Styling can be challenging, so make sure to talk to your Real Estate Agent for advice.

After implementing these tips, you’ve started the process of selling a home. For more information and to get started contact K & K Homes Group for all things Maryland Real Estate at 301-774-5900 or email