3 Ways to Make Your Home Worth More

3 Ways to Make Your Home Worth More

 

I truly enjoy sharing articles I find interesting โ€“ this one is in time for the Spring Real Estate Market. Enjoy โ€“ Sabrina

 

In its 10 years of existence, online real estate database Zillow (Z) has collected an unfathomable amount of information on housing prices. In the new book “Zillow Talk: The New Rules of Real Estate,” CEO Spencer Rascoff and chief economist Stan Humphries put that data to use by sharing ways to get the most value out of a home. โ€œWeโ€™re interested in converting real estate from an area of folklore into fact,โ€ Humphries told Yahoo Finance. He joined Jeff Macke to share some of his favorite tips for navigating todayโ€™s real estate market.

Redo the bathroom, not the kitchen

โ€œItโ€™s always been conventional wisdom that the best remodel you could do was the kitchen,โ€ says Humphries. โ€œWe actually crunched an enormous amount of data…what we found is actually itโ€™s the bathroom remodel that adds the most value to a house.โ€

According to Humphries it makes the most logical sense because with a bathroom remodel functionality is being added to the house whereas kitchen upgrades are often more about fashion.

According to Zillow’s data a mid-range $3,000 bathroom remodel results in a $1.71 increase in home value for every $1.00 spend on renovation.

Plus โ€œwhen people come to stay with you, youโ€™re going to be a lot happier that you have a nicer bathroom than kitchen.โ€ Kitchen renovations offer among the lowest returns on investment. Both mid range and upscale work on the kitchen recover only about half of their investment.

Just don’t invest too much money in the bathroom, upscale $12,000 bathroom upgrades result only in an $0.87 increase in home value for every $1.00 spent.

Selling season

Home sales reach their peak in June, during the last week of that month residential real estate transactions are 40% higher than average. But when is the right time to list your home?

The home season starts to crank up in January and February, says Humphries. But to get the most bang for your buck you might want to list your house during the last two weeks of March. There’s a sharp spike in visitors making contact with real estate agents on Zillow beginning in mid-April and continuing into July.

Selling in the last weeks of March, before the peak in agent contacts and after the peak of newly listed homes in February puts your home in the sweet-spot where it’s likely to be seen quickly and not get lost within a flood of new listings.

Humphries writes to “put your home on the market after you fill out your NCAA March Madness basketball brackets, but before someone slips on an ivy-green jacket at the Masters Golf Tournament.”

Psychologically price your home

Ending your home price in a โ€˜9โ€™ is incredibly beneficial, says Humphries. โ€œIf you were going to sell your house for $150,000, just pricing it down by $1000 and selling it for $149,000 ends up in you making $2175 more than you would if you priced it at $150,000.โ€ The ‘9’ dynamic works for houses at all price-points.

In the majority of cases, home prices that end in a ‘9’ sell for more for a home of the same relative value that ends in a ‘0.’ The risk that the seller takes on by cutting their home price by $1,000 usually results in gaining more than $1,000 over asking.

psychological pricing also sold home faster– Zillow found that homes using ‘9’ in the thousands digit sold four days to one-week faster than those that didn’t.

 

I read this article at:

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/3-tips-for-saving-money-on-your-home-125820548.html

 

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help. ย 

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

Want Real Estate Info on the Go? Download our FREE Real Estate App:ย ย http://thecatonteam.com/mobileapp

Visit our Website at:ย ย  http://thecatonteam.com/

VISIT OUR NEW INSTAGRAM PAGE: http://instagram.com/thecatonteam

Visit us on Facebook: ย ย http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

Yelp us at: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-caton-team-realtors-sabrina-caton-and-susan-caton-redwood-city

Or Yelp me: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_thanx?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Connect with us professionally at LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6588013&trk=tab_pro

Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading โ€“ Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices โ€“ Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008

 

Don’t Ignore Boomerang Buyers

I have to say – when the real estate market crashed it was heart breaking for me to watch and live through. ย Now that we’ve recovered and our market on the San Francisco Peninsula is booming – I am happy to see people getting back into homeownership. ย What can The Caton Team do for you?

Enjoy this article from the Daily Real Estate News …

 

Don’t Ignore Boomerang Buyers

DAILY REAL ESTATE NEWS

The housing market is ignoring the largest pool of prospects: Boomerang buyers, according to Daren Blomquist, vice president of RealtyTrac.

Boomerang buyers are former home owners who lost their home to a foreclosure or short sale. After sitting out of the market for several years to rebuild their credit, these buyers may be inching back to the market looking for a second chance at home ownership.

There are an estimated 7.3 million potential boomerang buyers, Blomquist says. “If we magically had 7.3 million more home owners, the home owner rate would be back to historic norms,” he notes.

Boomerang buyers mostly consist of Generation Xers and Baby Boomers. “They are the ones who are likely to come back and become home owners again than the millennials,” Blomquist says.

In a report earlier this year,ย RealtyTrac noted that Generation X and Baby Boomer “boomerang buyers” could “represent a massive wave of potential pent-up demand that could shape the housing market in the short term even more dramatically” than the millennials’ entrance into home ownership.

“The markets most likely to see the boomerang buyers materialize are those where there are a high percentage of housing units lost to foreclosure but where current home prices are still affordable for median income earners and where the population of Gen Xers and Baby Boomers โ€ฆ have held stead or increased during the Great Recession,” RealtyTrac notes in its report.

The metros expected to potentially see the most boomerang buyers over the next eight years are: Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, Ariz.; Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, Fla.; Detroit-Warren-Livonia, Mich.; Chicago-Naperville-Joliet, Ill.-Wis.; and Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Ga.

Source: “Housing Market Recovering in 2015,” RealtyTrac (March 25, 2015) and “Get Ready for the Return of 7.3M Ex-Owners,” REALTORยฎ Magazine Daily News (Jan. 27, 2015)

ย 

I read this article at: http://realtormag.realtor.org/daily-news/2015/03/31/dont-ignore-boomerang-buyers?om_rid=AACmlZ&om_mid=_BVGuesB9AWZZa1&om_ntype=RMODaily

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help. ย 

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

Want Real Estate Info on the Go? Download our FREE Real Estate App:ย ย http://thecatonteam.com/mobileapp

Visit our Website at:ย ย  http://thecatonteam.com/

VISIT OUR NEW INSTAGRAM PAGE: http://instagram.com/thecatonteam

Visit us on Facebook: ย ย http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

Yelp us at: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-caton-team-realtors-sabrina-caton-and-susan-caton-redwood-city

Or Yelp me: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_thanx?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Connect with us professionally at LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6588013&trk=tab_pro

Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading โ€“ Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices โ€“ Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008

 

SOLD – 3375 Brittan Ave #7 San Carlos

Good morning readers! ย We received two terrific offersย last night on 3375 Brittan Ave #7 in San Carlos and are now PENDING!

Please note both open houses have been canceled. ย Thank you for your interest.

With any questions – please email me at info@thecatonteam.com

 

Have a great day!

Sabrina

FOR SALE – Brittan Heights San Carlos – Open Sat & Sun 1:30-4pm

3375 Brittan Ave #7 in San Carlos is for sale.

Open Saturday & Sunday from 1:30-4pm.

Nestled in the San Carlos hills, this beautifully remodeled, single level, 2 bedroom/2 bath condo offers tree topย views of the western hills and open space area. ย The home features laminate wood flooring in the living & dining rooms, surround sound in the living room, a gourmet kitchen with granite counters, tastefully updated baths & lighting, plus an inside laundry room complete with washer and dryer. Located in the Brittan Heights complex, owners can enjoy several pools & tennis courts, children’s play area and a club house. The complex is close to hiking trails & has easy access to Hwy 280. ย Great San Carlos schools & parks are near by.

When you walk into this lovely condo and venture to the living area โ€“ you cannot help but notice the rolling hills and trees outside windows. It is breathtaking and peaceful. The large oak tree is lovely as the sun sets over the hills. ย The galley style kitchen alsoย enjoys this view from the dining room window. The natural light is both comforting and beautiful. Off the kitchen you will conveniently find the laundry room. Washer and dryer are included. The 2 bedrooms are good size, with wall-to-wall carpeting and large closets. The hall bath is tastefully remolded with slate colored tile, contemporary sink and faucet withย shower over tub. The master bedroom features a huge closet area, updated bath with granite counters and walk in shower.

The unit comes with a deeded carport. All appliances are included with the sale.

The unit will be open Saturday May 16 and Sunday May 17 from 1:30-4pm. Pop over for a visit.

For price, disclosures package including home and pest inspection, offer details or to have a private showing please call Sabrina at 650-568-5522 or email me at info@TheCatonTeam.com

Visit our website for photos and details:ย http://thecatonteam.com/

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help. ย 

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

Want Real Estate Info on the Go? Download our FREE Real Estate App:ย ย http://thecatonteam.com/mobileapp

Visit our Website at:ย ย  http://thecatonteam.com/

VISIT OUR INSTAGRAM PAGE: http://instagram.com/thecatonteam

Visit us on Facebook: ย ย http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

Yelp us at: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-caton-team-realtors-sabrina-caton-and-susan-caton-redwood-city

Or Yelp me: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_thanx?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Connect with us professionally at LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6588013&trk=tab_pro

Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading โ€“ Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices โ€“ Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008

 

 

 

Solar Panels Can be a Deal Killer

Solar Panels Can be a Deal Killer

 

Studies have suggested that the addition of solar panels on a homeย can boost a home’s value. But sometimes those solar panels can sabotage a deal when it comes time to sell.

More companies are offering home owners a contract to lease solar panels where they pay no upfront costs for the installation and could start saving on their electricity bills right away. But home owners who sign onto these deals are finding some snags when they go to sell.

Potential buyers are leery of taking on the leasing payment contracts for the next 15 to 17 years because they often have to qualify on credit from the solar companies themselves. Also, some buyers are hesitant to sign a contract because they’re concerned the solar equipment will become obsolete or won’t amount in a big savings in the end after paying the leasing fee.

Some home buyers are refusing to buy the house unless the seller buys out of the remaining lease payment stream — which could be $15,000 or more.

For example, a Fresno, Calif., couple trying to sell their house told The Los Angeles Times that it attracted multiple offers but two sets of buyers backed out of the contracts due to the leased solar panels on their roof. The buyers felt the long-term cost of the lease agreement was too high or they were concerned about the credit qualifications they had to meet in order to take over the lease. Ultimately, the couple had to pay $22,000 to break the lease with the solar company so that they could sell the house.

With the rising popularity of solar, Lynn Farris, a real estate professional in Windermere Hulsey & Associates in Vacaville, Calif., says she’s already seen several disputes arise over solar panel leases, and she expects the problem to get worse.

After all, residential solar installations are rising dramatically — up by 50 percent per year since 2012, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.

Furthermore if you bought your solar panels using a loan you may have a situation when you sell. HERO or PACE loans are not easy to spot on a Preliminary Title Report. Since these are government-backed loans โ€“ they require being in 1st position. Which is fine if you own your home free and clear. But most of us still carry a home loan and this poses a problem when it is time to sell. The idea is the loan will stay with the property along with the solar panels. What if the buyer cannot afford this loan? Worse yet – the buyersโ€™ lender WILL NOT loan on a home if they are not in first position. So the seller may be stuck paying off the entire loan though they no longer reap the benefits after they move out. You see, these types of loans are rolled into the property taxes โ€“ so there is no separate payment for them. They are attached to the property and therefore transferred to the buyers upon sale. New owners are then responsible for repayment of the loan. At times, sellers may forget to disclose this loan since they are not making monthly payments and it is not top of mind. The worst case result – some lenders will not lend on properties with HERO and PACE loans on them since banks require being in first position for new purchase loans. And this issue may not arise until a buyer is further down the road in the loan process.

ย Solar panels are awesome and I do believe a great way to help the environment and your pocketbook. We advise our clients to disclose this issue right away when selling so the buyer can be better prepared โ€“ or find a cash buyer where this will not be an issue.

I read this article at: http://realtormag.realtor.org/daily-news/2015/03/23/solar-panels-can-be-deal-killer?om_rid=AACmlZ&om_mid=_BVEFSkB9AEosrT&om_ntype=RMODaily

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help. ย 

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

Want Real Estate Info on the Go? Download our FREE Real Estate App:ย ย http://thecatonteam.com/mobileapp

Visit our Website at:ย ย  http://thecatonteam.com/

VISIT OUR NEW INSTAGRAM PAGE: http://instagram.com/thecatonteam

Visit us on Facebook: ย ย http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

Yelp us at: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-caton-team-realtors-sabrina-caton-and-susan-caton-redwood-city

Or Yelp me: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_thanx?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Connect with us professionally at LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6588013&trk=tab_pro

Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading โ€“ Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices โ€“ Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008

 

For those buying a home โ€“ here are some considerationsโ€ฆ

For those buying a home โ€“ hereย are some considerationsโ€ฆย 

I like to sit down with potential clients from day one. Buying real estate takes much more than โ€œI saw this house and I want to buy itโ€. On the San Francisco Peninsula, where currently we are in a sellers market โ€“ buying a home takes patience and knowledge. Here are 7 thoughts for a buyer to considerโ€ฆ

* Get pre-approved for a home loanโ€ฆ APPROVED โ€“ not qualified!

This is the true first step in buying real estate and the one step so many buyers over look. There was a time when getting a home loan was simple. Those days are long gone and for good measure. The bank takes the time to evaluate each candidate very carefully, before and during the purchase process. This can take a few days to a few weeks depending on how quickly the client provides all the necessary documentation to the bank. Doing so gets a buyer pre-approved โ€“ chatting with a lender and providing no documentation is just a pre-qualification and truly means nothing when trying to buy a home.

* Get to know the home loan process and time frames and provide necessary documentation ASAP

Getting a home loan has changed over the past few years โ€“ and it is for the better though it is a bit more tedious. Find a lender you feel comfortable working with and provided them with all the necessary documentation theyโ€™ve asked for early on so they can complete your home loan approval. The further along the process, the strong a buyer you become.

No down payment โ€“ does not mean โ€“ no cost to buyer. Closing costs are expenses that are part of the buyersโ€™ journey. There are several and each county is different. Please make the time to sit with your Realtor and discuss this. Knowledge is power!

Once we are in contract we make sure to remind our buyers that our journey has truly just begun. Finding the home is one thing โ€“ getting the home is another. So be pennywise throughout the journey โ€“ never pound-foolish.

* Make a wish & a hate listโ€ฆ

One of my favorite parts of the homeowner journey is coming up with the wants and needs list. The hate list is a great tool as well. Youโ€™ve got to be honest and truthful with your Realtor throughout the journey. The more we know about you โ€“ the easier it will be for us to find what you are looking for.

* Donโ€™t lack vision or buy into a staged vision

Oh the power of staging! It works wonders โ€“ but remember to look past it โ€“ the house is what you are actually buying!

* Read and understand the HOA documentationsโ€ฆ

There is so much important information in the HOA documentation. From day-to-day rules to future cost analysis. I have a great resource to assist buyers in reviewing their HOA documents.

* Make your offer in accordance with current market conditions โ€“ be aware

This is so true and is constantly changing. By the time you hear something on the news โ€“ the real estate market has changed. The Caton Team are full time Realtors, we are in the trenches day in and day out and make a point to connect with the other Realtors involved in the transaction so we can better inform our buyers on what they should and shouldnโ€™t do in their offer. So please, make the time to discuss this with your Realtor.

* The inspection report may not be as bad as it seemsโ€ฆ

The Caton Team has read hundreds, if not thousands of inspection reports. Weโ€™ve dealt with numerous home-related issues with clients and with our own homes. If we donโ€™t have an answer โ€“ we know someone who will! So read them first, ask questions and we will connect our clients with the best inspectors and resources to understand these documents.

* Be patientโ€ฆ

Buying a home on the San Francisco is not easy or fast. You need to be patient. You need to be prepared. You need to be flexible. If you are selling and buying, have a plan. Donโ€™t get caught up on homes you cannot move forward on until you are ready. So in review, get approved for a home loan, understand the time frames the bank has and connect your Realtor with your lender, make a wish list and a hate list and share this with your Realtor. Donโ€™t get caught up on the pretty dรฉcor, look through it at the actual home, read read read all the inspections, disclosures and HOA docs. YOU are buying the house. YOU need to understand what you are signing โ€“ and if you have questions ask us โ€“ your Realtors! Heed the advice we dispense when writing offers, often times you may not like the truth about the market โ€“ but the market sets the bar. As your Realtors we know what it takes to get a home.

If you have any real estate related questions, comments or concerns โ€“ weโ€™d love to hear from you! Email or comment on our blog. THANK YOU!

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help. ย 

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

Want Real Estate Info on the Go? Download our FREE Real Estate App:ย ย http://thecatonteam.com/mobileapp

Visit our Website at:ย ย  http://thecatonteam.com/

VISIT OUR NEW INSTAGRAM PAGE: http://instagram.com/thecatonteam

Visit us on Facebook: ย ย http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

Yelp us at: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-caton-team-realtors-sabrina-caton-and-susan-caton-redwood-city

Or Yelp me: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_thanx?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Connect with us professionally at LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6588013&trk=tab_pro

Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading โ€“ Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices โ€“ Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008