White & Associates Blog

What Improvements Should You Make Before Selling?

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We are here to answer a great question from one of our viewers today. They want to know, “Should I make major improvements to my home prior to putting it on the market this spring?”

My first thought goes to what your budget is. We see sellers have a tendency to over-improve their properties. We don’t want you to overspend because you likely won’t see all that money back in your home sale. We want you to make improvements that will add value, not take away from it.

My second thought is to consider design aesthetics. We want to make sure you keep in mind the next person buying your property. We want them to see themselves living in the home, so painting in neutral colors is a good idea.

 

Sticking to a schedule is important.

 

My last point is this: let’s set a schedule and stick to it. We’ve all had weekend projects that end up taking a month’s worth of weekends. We want to stick to a schedule so we can get your home sold and you can be in your new one before the end of spring.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to give us a call or send us an email. We look forward to hearing from you.

3 Tips for Staging Your Home During the Holidays

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When you get ready to put your house on the market during the holidays, it can be a little bit challenging. Here are three helpful tips, as advised by professional stager Barbara Banks, on how to stage your home for the holidays:

Keep all decorations simple.

  1. Decorate, but keep it simple. On the exterior of the house, you want to keep all decorations simple. Just a simple wreath on the door and a few lights out front in the bushes will do. Use only white lights—no colored ones. You want to keep it simple on the interior as well; now is not the time to display your collections. A specialty of Barbara’s is decorating the Christmas tree with the same color palate that you use to decorate the surrounding interior of the home.
  2. Keep the religious symbols simple, too. Many people celebrate Christmas for religious reasons, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s a good idea to keep the religious symbols neutral.
  3. Absolutely no inflatables on the outside. This means no giant Santa bouncing around in the front yard—that might turn off any buyers from wanting to come up to your home. In maintaining curb appeal, you want to keep things simple and classy.

For more information about staging, you can reach Barbara at (933) 244-7920. If you have any other real estate-related questions, feel free to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to helping you in any way I can.

Home Staging Tips from Angie Herself

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If you’re on a budget when selling your home and don’t want to make a bunch of expensive fixes and renovations, you’re in luck. We have got some great tips to share with you today, courtesy of Angie’s List founder Angie Hicks.

Here are some great ways to make your home look clean and simplified:

  1. Make your front door look great. It’s the very first and very last thing buyers will see when they visit your house. You want it to look clean and free of distractions.
  1. Get your yard green and weed-free. It’s not hard to do with a little fertilizer.
  1. Don’t forget to caulk and trim any driveway or sidewalk cracks
  1. Make sure the street number is visible from the curb.
  1. Appeal to the neighbors. If the neighbors like the home, the new owners will too.

Appealing to the neighbors is important.

These are five simple things you can do to help your home stand out in this market. If you have any questions for us, don’t hesitate to give us a call or send us an email. We would love to hear from you.

What Is the Secret to Getting Your Kansas City Home Sold?

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 Buying a home? Click here to perform a full home search
Selling a home? Click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation

Selling a home can be stressful, but it doesn't have to be. Today, we want to share a few tips to help you get your home ready for the market.

Currently, Kansas City is experiencing a very heavy seller's market. This means that we have many more buyers in the market than we have sellers. In fact, many sellers are seeing their home go under contract within days of listing! But this doesn't mean that any home will sell; rather, it means homes that are well-cared-for, well-kept, and well-staged will sell! Here are our three tips for selling success:

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1. Clean, clean, clean: Did your mother ever tell you that cleanliness is next to godliness? When selling your home, this is the absolute truth. You need to clean countertops, cabinets, inside closets, the garage, storage areas, windows, and just about everywhere else you can think of!

2. Have you home pre-inspected: When was the last time you had the filters in your furnace changed? When was the last time you cleaned off your air conditioner's condensing unit? A pre-inspection can draw your eye to items that you might never have noticed needs repairs. It could save you thousands of dollars when it comes time for negotiations!

3. Hire an expert Realtor. Our expert Realtors not only can provide you with the knowledge to help you determine the market value of your home, we can also help you with the items you need to do to prepare your home for listing and we can recommend vendors that can help you get through the process!

There you have it: three quick tips to help you get your home ready for the market. Next time, we'll discuss how staging can help with the selling process.

If you have any questions for us, or if you would like real estate assistance, please don't hesitate to reach out to us. We would love to hear from you!

Three Reasons to Sell This Winter in Kansas City

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 Buying a home? Click here to perform a full home search
Selling a home? Click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation

Many clients ask, “Should I leave my home on the market during the holidays?” My response? Absolutely, you should keep your home listed. There are advantages to selling during this time of year. Here are the top three:

1. There’s less competition. There are fewer active sellers on the market. Many sellers remove their home during the holidays season. This helps your property stand out to prospective buyers.
2. January is the biggest transfer month. Most corporate moves happen during the beginning of the new year. Employees are being transferred and need a new place to live quickly. If you removed your home from the market, you wouldn’t have the opportunity to market to this pool of buyers!
3. Most of the buyers during this time are serious. They’re determined and motivated, even through the cold weather. Warmer months attract window shoppers, while the winter brings out the best buyers.

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If you have any questions about selling a home during the holidays, or anything about real estate, give me a call or email today! I look forward to hearing from you.

Landscaping Adds Value!

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Let Your Landscaping Pay You Back!

In both uncertain financial times, and prosperous times, a well landscaped yard is still one of the best investments you can make! It not only adds value to the home, but can also make your home easier to sell. Recent research has shown consumers valued the same home with good landscaping 11% higher than the same home without good landscaping. For a $300,000.00 home that’s approximately $33,000.00 more that your home is worth because of a nicely landscaped yard. A nicely landscaped yard can have a cost recovery value of 100 to 200% at selling time.

Creating equity in your home isn’t the only way to get monetary value out of your landscape. Look at some of the other benefits that can save you up to 20% and maybe even up to 50% on your heating and air conditioning costs by strategic landscaping around your home:

  • Evergreens and other dense trees in the proper position around your house can lower your heating bill by 10 – 20%.
  • Shade trees can provide enough shade to your home to cut your cooling costs by as much as 15 – 35%.
  • Even the grass in your yard and your neighbor’s yards cools your community and saves everyone on air conditioning costs.

Of course your landscaping can provide you much more than just monetary value. Your landscaping is working around the clock to keep you and your family healthy and vibrant. These are some other benefits to think about when considering how valuable your landscaping is to you as well as your home:

  • Trees, Shrubs and Turf absorb dust, dirt, and other gaseous pollutents in the air that can be harmful to our health.
  • Trees, Shrubs and Turf convert carbon dioxide into oxygen. One tree can convert 26 lbs. of Carbon Dioxide into 13 lbs. of oxygen each year. That’s enough to provide for a family of four.
  • Gardening can be its own weight loss program helping you tighten your belt strap and staying healthy.
  • Gardening is found to be relaxing, mind clearing and very rewarding. It’s a stress reliever.

So much is made of the going green movement and being environmentally friendly but you can do your part right at home and why not make it valuable to both you, your home, your environment and your world.

Home Ownership just makes sense

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The decision to buy a home is one of the largest financial decisions anyone will ever make. Most of the time, this decision is driven by emotions. But, what are the benefits to owning a home? The most obvious benefit to home ownership is just that...ownership! Unlike renting, your monthly payment is actually allowing you to purchase instead of "borrowing" something that will not belong to you.

The most measurable financial benefit to homeownership, according to Barry Nielsen of Mortgage Graphics, is price appreciation. Price appreciation helps build home equity, which is the difference between the market price of the house and the remaining mortgage payments.

The second largest financial benefit of owning a home is tax savings. You can deduct the annual interest paid on a mortgage from your income. There are no tax benefits/savings for your rent payments. Obviously, price appreciation is the largest benefit to owning your own home but there are many intangible benefits such as peace of mind and the security and pride that come with home ownership.