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Updated: Saturday, March 25, 2017


Is This Home A Good Deal?
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Is This Home A Good Deal?

Written byRealty Times StaffPosted On Thursday, 23 March 2017 19:27
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Theres no perfect home, but some homes are more ideal for your household than others. When you look for your next home, carefully consider these four criteria - price, features, location and condition. The closer you get to meeting all four criteria, the better your chances are of making a good buy.

Price

In any market, price has to come first. To determine what you can comfortably afford, talk to your real estate professional. He or she can recommend a lender who will prequalify you for a purchase loan. When you know how much you can spend, it will be easier to shop for homes within your price range. With luck, one will stand out.

Features

The size of your household and your activities determine the features you want in your next home. The number of bedrooms, baths and living areas are a matter of comfort and convenience. You may want an extra bedroom for guests or a second master suite for parents.

If you work a lot at home, youll want a private home office or a computer nook. You may want a playroom for the kids, a separate laundry area, and fenced yard and covered patio for entertaining. An eat-in kitchen may be more important to you than a formal dining room. You may want an outdoor kitchen or at least an entertainment area.

Think about your daily life from morning to bedtime, and how your next home can make these activities more pleasant. This should be your "must-have" list, and will help you look at homes more objectively.

Location

Some areas will always be more expensive to live in than others. Neighborhoods that are well-kept tend to maintain higher home values. Homes that are close to jobs, schools and shopping centers tend to sell for more money than homes without as much infrastructure.

What is the best home you can find in the area where you want to live? If these homes are out of your range, you can compromise -- buy a smaller home or a home that needs lots of work in the best neighborhood you can afford.

Condition

Condition refers to the state of repair. Does the home have curb appeal? Is it updated and well-maintained, or does it need extensive and expensive remodeling? Carefully consider any deferred maintenance, such as a roof that may need to be replaced in only a few years. Consider the design and functionality -- is the kitchen too small and would you be able to afford to remodel it? Look closely at repairs, cleanliness and traffic flow.

The one advantage of buying a home that needs updates and repairs is that these homes cost less than updated homes in the same neighborhood.

Be prepared to compromise. Dont frustrate yourself or your family looking for perfection. Sometimes the home of your dreams doesnt have every feature on your checklist, or it may be a little further away than your favorite neighborhood, but youll be happy if it has most of criteria you want at the price you can afford.


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10 Surprising Items People Hate Having in Their Home
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10 Surprising Items People Hate Having in Their Home

Written byMitchell Parker, Houzz Editorial StaffPosted On Thursday, 23 March 2017 19:30
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Photo by bg design inc.

Warning: This article might cause you to feel ashamed, embarrassed and like youre committing home design sins. OK, maybe not. But what you are about to read is a list of common household design elements that many homeowners, according to a recent, lively Houzz discussion, absolutely refuse to have in their home.

The dirty, and hilarious, truth is that many homeowners - even the most extreme yet playful haters - make do with these things in their own homes, and are actually quite fond of them. Plus, what many people are probably reacting to are those basic, off-the-shelf options that fill old, dated homes and apartments like mine. Actually, many advancements have been made in things like carpet and laminate. And the point is, its all fun and you should never take your house too seriously anyway. Just make the most of what you have - and never say never.

1. Carpet. Oh, come on. Why is everyone so down on carpet? Its soft, it comes in lots of >

OK, I admit that I dont quite understand putting carpet in the kitchen or a bathroom. And stock apartment carpet is more than ho-hum. But let designer Judith Taylor convince you that theres more to carpet than what you think.

11 Reasons to Love Wall-to-Wall Carpeting Again

Photo by Paul Anater - Browse eclectic home design photos

2. Laminate flooring. As with most things, the cheaper you go, the cheaper itll look. Laminate flooring has come a long way. You can have enti>

Laminate Floors: Get the Look of Wood and More for Less

3. Taxidermy. This is a tough one. Ive hunted before. I grew up in Texas. I have a friend who wants to train to be a taxidermist. But its just not for me mdash; from a moral, ethical and environmental standpoint. What Ive found is that many homeowners who agree with me still find themselves in households with taxidermy because their spouse or significant other is really into it. I think if we can find a way to accept everyones views and be respectful enough to have a serious, smart conversation about the subject, then weve made a little progress.

Take user mmers, for example. She sums the dilemma up nicely: "There are a few things I would have said lsquo;never to until I married my husband. Unfortunately we have some taxidermy things his office. I ra>

Photo by Mark Newman Design - Look for contemporary living room pictures

4. Vertical blinds. Ill admit, I was a little taken aback by this one. I like my vertical blinds, especially the ones in my bedroom, and especially after I hang a large blanket, a dark red fitted sheet and blackout curtains over them. Thats just me.

As longtime designer Becky Dietrich points out, however, vertical blinds have come a long way, work great for large windows and sliding glass doors, and are now available in materials like sheer fabrics.

How to Choose the Right Window Blinds

5. Fake flowers. Actually, pretty much fake anything. I definitely can get behind this one, though of course there has been a vase of fake flowers in my home at various points in my life, ones I let stay for far too long.

Architect Eric Reinholdt advocates for humble materials that "dont draw attention to themselves or pretend to be something theyre not." I think thats a simple way to make a home more honest and inviting.

Design Workshop: The Beauty of Humble Materials

Photo by Todd Davis Architecture - More modern bedroom photos

6. Wallpaper. Again, I think this is a case where many people have an image in their head from a time long, long ago. I can remember the floral-print wallpaper in my parents bathroom, yellowed and peeling. But today things are different.

"Just a few years ago, wallpaper was considered a fusty >

Considering Wallpaper? Heres How to Get Started

Photo by Jill Wolff Interior Design - Search traditional living room design ideas

7. Too many knickknacks collecting dust. If I had a nickel for every time I dusted, I wouldnt have enough money to buy a stamp. Im guessing from the comments in the above-mentioned Houzz discussion that many people are just like me, so much so that theyve made it a mission to rid their homes of any tchotchkes that can accumulate dust.

But thats not the right solution. Our homes should be filled with memories and things that make us happy, no matter how abundant or small. Keep your collections and display them with pride mdash; learn how to fight dust instead.

What You Need to Know About Dust and How to Fight It

8. Fluorescent lighting. I cant imagine any situation where fluorescent lighting makes a home feel, well, homier. In a home office or workshop? Fine. But a kitchen? Dont think so.

5 Questions to Ask for the Best Room Lighting

By Mitchell Parker - See more Home Design Photos

9. Recliners. People seem to fall into two camps: those who like big reclining chairs and those who loathe them. Sorry, I love my recliner. Granted, it looks like a big lump of ugly, but when I see it, all I think of is the times Ive spent curled up rocking my newborn daughter, reading a good book or watching an exciting sports game. Theres nothing like it. Maybe its a dad thing.

The Beautiful Thing About Dads Chair

Photo by Jeni Lee - Look for eclectic living room pictures

10. Clowns. OK, I read Stephen Kings It, have seen Killer Clowns From Outer Space and wouldnt want my house filled with anything reminiscent of a clown. But lets cut some people some slack here. After all, Id be more than happy to have this Australian family of clowns in my home

My Houzz: An Australian Circus Familys Home Juggles Extra Room

Also See:

  • Find Carpet and Flooring Professionals in Your Area
  • Like Laminate? Know Your Flooring Options
  • How to Display Your Cherished Collection

> Full Story

Why Millennial Buyers Are Swiping Left On Your Home
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nbsp;nbsp;My Realty Times

LOGIN

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Forgot Username or Password

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Why Millennial Buyers Are Swiping Left On Your Home

Written byJaymi NaciriPosted On Wednesday, 22 March 2017 20:16
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Pinterest

They want it fast, they want it easy, and it better be perfect. That pretty much sums up the typical millennial homebuyer today. So, if thats your target and your house isnt pristine, theyre going to move on to one that is. So how do you make your home swipeable? Its easy, really.

Clean it up

"Whether or not we admit it, weve all seen at least a few of the home reality shows on channels such as TLC and HGTV. Those shows can be fun and informative, but they also do a lot to shape buyer expectations," said Bankrate.

That means millennial buyers - maybe more than any other demographic since they grew up in the age of House Hunters and flipping show marathons - will be expecting a house to be spic-n-span and well-staged. Award-winning home stager Torinbsp;Toth, author of the best-selling book,nbsp;FEEL AT HOME: Homenbsp;Stagingnbsp;Secrets for a Quick and Easy Sell, has some ideas that can be easily implemented to help a home sparkle, including staging your kitchen or your bathroom for under 1,000.

Consider the color

Are the walls of your home beige, gold, or something else in the Mediterranean family? Go gray, instead. As weve seen countless times, most buyers have little vision when it comes to overlooking design issues, and may get hung up on something like a paint color, which keeps them from being able to really see the home. An outdated color may also give them the impression that the rest of the house is outdated.

"The new grays that have gained wide appeal have become a standard base for the millennial palette, along with more whitewashed gray variations, other soft neutrals and cooler whites influenced by Scandinavian deacute;cor," said the Chicago Tribune.

Dont be afraid to throw some modern wallpaper up in a space that needs a pop. It can make the buyer feel like time, effort, and care was taken to make the home stand out.

Focus on kitchens and baths

Weve been told for decades that kitchens and baths sell homes, and those spaces are top of mind for millennial buyers, too. But, while they may have ideas about what theyd like these spaces to look like, they may not have the patience, or the funds, to pay for them to be redone.

"The primary reason younger buyers seek updated kitchens and baths is because they have limited budgets," Jack Curtis, a Keller Williams real estate agent in Dublin, Ohio, told Bankrate. "Most of their savings will go toward the down payment and furnishings. Kitchens and bathrooms are also the most expensive parts of a home to update, and young homeowners cannot afford to sink a lot of money into those areas."

If youre going for a big renovation in the kitchen, taking down walls to open it up to the living space will reap rewards. Think: A large island with seating, stainless steel appliances, quartz countertops, and new fixtures, "which are especially important for todays young, budget-conscious buyers," said Curtis.


Decorpad

Go for luxury-ish

When considering options and materials, muse on this: "Anbsp;Monitoring the Futurenbsp;study by the University of Michigan showed a dramatic increase resulting in 75 of millennials noting that wealth was a very important life attribute," said Freshome. "Since millennials seem to value money and success, it only seems natural for them to flock to high-tech jobs that lead to wealth and success. nbsp;This life>

The takeaway is that millennials want a space to look rich. But that doesnt mean it has to put you in the poorhouse. Decluttering the space is one of the top tips of home stagers, and this will help create a minimalistic appearance that helps communicate luxury. A few inexpensive, high-end-looking details - a faux fur pillow on the couch, a gilded accessory, a marble-topped side table you pick up at Home Goods for 50 - can take it a step further:

Incorporate easy-care materials

Millennials may want the look of luxury, but they may not want the upkeep. "Most millennials want a turnkey home that needs little or no work. They spend long hours on the job and have many interests, and prefer materials and that require minimal care," said Mary Cook of national, award-winning commercial interior design firm Mary Cook Associates. "That means wood or tile floors, easy-care countertops and gas fireplaces. New products that reflect this are ever-more-functional engineered stones and tiles that mimic more luxurious surfaces, from marble to exotic wood. The model home interiors we create embrace furnishings that reflect these preferences."

Fashion a home office

Have an extra room thats serving as a guest space or a catch-all? Pick up an inexpensive desk, position the guest chair in front, and now you have a home office. Today, millennials might reject your home altogether and fail to even come for a tour if they dont have a place to work from home. The words "home office" have to be in your listing.

Upgrade your tech

"One defining characteristic of the Millennial generation is that they grew up with technology," said Better Homes and Gardens.nbsp;"Many were lsquo;plugged in from the day they were born. To these individuals, technology is not just a luxury, but its a necessity. Your home needs to be technologically friendly in order to appeal to these buyers."

Making a few easy changes to add tech features to your home could go a long way toward making it irresistible to a millennial buyer. "Install a simple home automation system like a programmable thermostat that can be linked to your smart phone," they said.


Forbes

Dont ignore the curb appeal

Making sure your home looks good from the street is universally important. But dont forget about the backyard. An annual Better Homes and Gardens survey monitoring "attitude and behavior trends of homeowners in the U.S." took a look at millennials and found that "more than three-quarters 77 say they want their outdoor living space to feel like a >

Take good pictures

Millennials are visual people. You only need to return to the Tinder analogy to understand that. Its more important than ever to make sure the pictures of the home are stellar. A baby boomer or Gen-Xer may be able to look past photos to come see a home that matches their needs. You may not have the same shot with a millennial.

Think carefully about how you promote the location

How far is the local Trader Joes Whole Foods, and Target? Is there a popular shopping area or group of restaurants nearby? Walkability is key for many millennials. Playing up these details in the home listing and marketing materials can go a long way toward attracting this target.

Play up energy efficiency

"With energy costs on the rise and growing interest in protecting the environment, young buyers are conscious of buying homes that are green," said Bankrate.

While many energy-efficient items may not necessarily be seen by the naked eye, expect millennials to "ask about the sustainability of your building materials and practices," said Pacesetter Homes. "They are committed to eco-friendly, energy-efficient homes - with ENERGY STAR appliances, programmable lighting and thermostats, and other high-tech, low-carbon-footprint amenities. Not only can they spell lsquo;LEED, but they want this building certification."

Got a fixer-upper? Market it that way

Millennials may be turned off by a junky or outdated home masquerading as move-in ready, but if you have a true fixer-upper thats being sold as is, well, Hello challenge A millennial might be turned on by the idea of having a project, especially if they think theyre getting a deal.


> Full Story



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