5 Ways To Simplify Home Sales Prep

It’s often more challenging to get a home market-ready. If your not up to the physical and mental challenges of decluttering, packing up, and renovating your home, several new services and tools may make life a bit easier.page5image1918481232

#1 – Innovative Decluttering Services

If you or your family doesn’t have the time, energy, or physical ability to sift through a lifetime
of accumulation, a professional decluttering and downsizing expert may be able to facilitate the process.  
Some specialize in helping seniors with downsizing or organizing a move. To learn more and identify potential resources, visit the National Association of Senior Move Managers (nasmm.org), Certified Relocation & Transition Specialists (crtscertification.com), and the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (napo.net).

Another option you may want to try is a virtual decluttering services. Some providers now meet with clients via live video chats, using apps like Skype, FaceTime, or Google Hangouts. As a bonus, virtual decluttering services usually cost less than on-site providers.

#2 – New Staging Options

If your house is empty and you want to prep it for sale look online for other alternatives using search terms like “rentals to stage houses for sale.” This will likely return options like Cort (cort.com) and Brook Furniture Rental (bfr.com), which cater to short-term rentals.

If you’re on a budget, partial staging may be an economical option. Consider staging the entrance area for those all-important first impressions on house tours. Then focus on the main living areas of the home: the kitchen, living room, dining area, and master bedroom.

#3 – Virtual Staging Services

According to NAR Research, 93 percent of buyers use an online website to search for homes.If your home is vacant or you are unable to clear out some items before the property is put on the market, virtual staging may be a way to help improve first impressions online.

Services like BoxBrownie.com and VirtualStagingSolutions.com can remove clutter from photos, add virtual furniture, enhance lighting, and more.

Also, consider the potential downside of inflating buyers’ expectations of a property. If the online photos look substantially better than the real thing, buyers may experience disappointment and frustration when viewing the home firsthand.  To avoid this potential problem, some agents opt to display two photos of each room—one empty and one staged—in their listing photos.

# 4 – Fresh Approaches to Storage

Although not available in all areas, companies like MakeSpace.com and Clutter.com will come and pack up belongings (boxes and packing materials are included in the price), move them into a storage unit, and deliver them back to you (or to the new home) when requested.

The contents are cataloged online or in a phone app, so owners can decide what comes back and when.  Consider this option if you’re thinking about renting a storage unit.

#5 – New Renovation Options

If you have most of your assets tied up in your home, it can be challenging to finance renovations that could improve the selling price. A new company, Curbio (curbio.com), calls itself the “Pre-sale Renovation Experts.” It completes updates before a home is put on the market, but doesn’t collect payment until the house is sold.4

Curbio won the Pitch Battle at NAR’s second annual Innovation, Opportunity & Investment (iOi) Summit in Seattle last August, competing against 13 other finalists, all considered among the best new technology startups in the real estate industry. Curbio is growing but still serves a limited market.  If Curbio isn’t in your area, be on the lookout for independent, local renovation companies that specialize in making smart upgrades that can maximize your sales price.  Or ask for approved contractor list.

To learn more about preparing your home to be sold and home staging contact us and ask for our free Room By Room review home staging booklet.  It’s a comprehensive check list for each room of the house.  

 

 

 

Is An Accessory Dwelling Unit Right For You?

As a homeowner, you may be considering adding an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) to your property: either inside your current home, as an addition to your existing home, or as a free-standing building. ADUs are also know as granny-flats, mother-in-law-apartments and so on. How can you determine if this is the right move for you?

RESEARCH ADU REGULATIONS

Determine if your area is ADU-friendly by visiting your city’s planning and zoning website, or by calling or visiting the local office. Some areas encourage ADUs and others don’t. Even if your city’s regulations seem to discourage ADU construction, you may be able to secure a waiver to build one. Ask.

DO A COST EVALUATION

If you want an ADU to bring in rental income, be sure to look at the total cost for permits, construction, and the increase in annual property taxes. Compare this to the monthly income you expect to receive to determine how long it will take for the ADU to pay for itself before you realize any income.

CONSIDER YOUR LIFESTYLE AND NEEDS

Important considerations include:

Privacy vs. Company – If you are a private person, having a renter on your property may present difficulties. However, if you are looking for more social interaction, finding the right renter may be just what you need.

Assistance – If you have special needs, consider trading maintenance, cleaning, or personal services for part or all of the rent on your ADU. It may be an economical way to retain your independence, even with physical limitations.

Aging in Place – If you want to age in place, an ADU built with universal design concepts may help you stay on your property, while simultaneously improving your financial situation. You could rent out the house that is too large or unsuitable for aging in place, while staying in the neighborhood you know and love.

Adult Children – If you have adult children who have returned home to live with you, an ADU may be an economical way to keep your children (and possibly grandchildren) close, while maintaining privacy for you and for them.

TALK TO YOUR REAL ESTATE SPECIALIST

An accessory dwelling unit may be exactly what you need. For additional perspectives, talk to me to help you determine if this is a good option for you!

Housing Challenges For Seniors

One crucial element of aging well is housing, and there’s much to criticize about what’s currently available. 

For one, there aren’t enough properties that provide for the affordability, accessibility, and social well-being necessary for seniors’ quality of life. 

Thus, developing housing that incorporates universal design features — no-step entries; bedrooms, bathrooms, and kitchens on the ground level; wide doorways and hallways; variable counter heights; and lever-style handles.

The Milken Institute report does point to several promising lifestyle trends that address seniors’ needs, including: 

·       Co-housing — People live in their own homes but have communal spaces like kitchens, living rooms, and dining areas where residents come together for meals and socializing. 

·       Student matches – Older homeowners rent rooms to students, providing affordable housing for students and easing seniors’ housing costs. In addition, homeowners can get help with household tasks and forge deeper social connections. 

·       Home sharing — Adults living together bring benefits similar to student matches – sharing household tasks and easing housing costs and social isolation. 

·       Multigenerational housing and granny units – Seniors living with family members or in an on-site granny flat or accessible dwelling unit (ADU) on the property can strengthen family relationships, keep seniors out of institutional settings, and lower the costs of caregiving. 

If you need help with housing or need help for a loved one.  Contact us.  We can help you sort through available options and answer any questions you may have.   

3 Strategies for Living Longer in Your Home

Personal health, physical environment, and the ability to use technology play vital roles in remaining independent and aging in place as long as possible.  Let’s explore these three strategies to living longer in your home.

1. Walk Your Way to Health

All types of physical activity deliver health benefits. For seniors, a daily walking routine is often the best option. Harvard Medical School cites various studies that have confirmed that walking counteracts the effects of weight-promoting genes, reduces cravings for sweets, eases joint pain, and boosts immune function.

Achieving these benefits may require only 20 minutes of walking a day, five days a week.

To gain even more from your walks, take them outdoors, with
or without a friend. These short bursts of activity can improve your mental outlook in addition to your physical health.

2. Embrace One-Floor Living

Talk to a universal design specialist to learn how to
prepare your home so you can age gracefully. 
You may need to make significant renovations, or your home may only require a few small changes to accommodate one-floor living.

If your house doesn’t lend itself
to a first-floor bedroom, can’t accommodate assistive equipment in the shower, or requires more renovations than you’re willing

to make, consider moving to a different home.

It will be easier to change your address now than to wait until health issues dictate a move. You’ll have more time to make decorating decisions and get settled in, so the new house becomes “home” to you and your family.

3. Get Comfortable With Technology

Technology is rapidly changing many aspects of life, from opening up new ways to receive medical care, new options for staying in touch with family and friends, and new ways to manage tasks around the home.

If you aren’t already familiar
with tablets or smartphones,
take a class at your local library or community center, and learn the basics. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by all the benefits these devices can offer.

Robots and smart homes will play a significant role in independent living. Soon, you’ll be able to control your entire home, from opening windows and unlocking doors to changing the thermostat and ordering delivered meals—all with your voice!

New Construction 55+ Community Woods Landing In Mays Landing NJ.

We’ve just contracted with Fernmoor Homes to sell their fabulous 55+ active adult community called Woods Landing. This community is located in Mays Landing in Atlantic County, NJ. Home prices start at just $244,900. Homes range from 1,500 square feet to 1,875 square feet. All homes feature 2 car garages, walk up attics and upgraded interiors. 2 homes are available for immediate occupancy. Click here to learn more about Woods Landing homes or contact us for a tour.

Woods Landing Club House

Age In The Right Place

A popular phrase in the senior care industry is “age in place,” which is used to describe when an older adult chooses to stay in their own homes for as long as possible. Now a new phrase is coming into more common usage, “age in the right place.” This phrase means older adults feel comfortable in their surroundings, they can maintain their independence and when they experience health or financial problems, they can find solutions to minimize those problems, according to Stephen M. Golant, University of Florida professor, gerontologist and author of “Aging in the Right Place.”
“No matter how careful one is about eating patterns and exercise, bad things happen despite the best preventive health measures. When bad things happen, older people should have as many options for living environments to help cope with decline.” Golant said in an interview with Next Avenue. Aging in place might not be for everyone. For example, this may be due to the: 

  • Home’s design that could produce fall risks or make it difficult to maintain.
  • Lack of family or home care support due to living far away or in a rural area.
  • Poor local transportation making it challenging to get groceries or attend doctor appointments. 

Before a health event occurs or before aging’s effects become more apparent, alternative living options should be considered – Contact us and we will connect you with a certified senior advisor through our partners at CarePatrol. Their certified senior advisors help older adults and families find what is and plan what will be the safest living options for them as they age whether that’s an independent living, assisted living or memory care community. 
As the nation’s largest senior placement organization, CarePatrol is ready to help older adults and their families identify the right place at the right price. If you know someone who could benefit from community living, contact us. CarePatrol services are always free to our clients.

Article is courtesy of Jodi Lewis-Smith,
Certified Senior Advisor with CarePatrol

In Home Care Vs Independent or Assisted Living.

Choosing living options for yourself or a loved one can be a challenge. This post compares in home care to Independent or Assisted Living. We’ll look at the costs and benefits for each.

Assisted living and independent Living communities allow residents to maintain independence yet have the benefits of support such as meals, recreation, and activities. Also assisted living communities have easy access to health and medical care if needed.

In home care allows seniors to stay in their home and have support. Agencies provide support from companionship on a part time basis to 24/7 in home care.

The cost of assisted living and independent living communities varies depending on the size of the apartment, location and services included. In general prices would range from $48,000 – $84,000 per year. In home care typically averages around $21/hour. For live in care that rate is closer to $200 per day and would average $73,000 per year.

In home care is fantastic. It allows you to enjoy the comfort and familiarity of home yet still have care and help to feel safe. However in home care does not have the benefits of social activities, meals, laundry service, healthcare and transportation. 

My advice is to consider in home care as a great option if you want to stay at home but just need a little extra help. This is a great and affordable option. Also if you’re recovering from an accident or surgery and need help for a short amount of time in home care can be a great temporary option. If you need live in care 24/7 I’d recommend considering assisted living or independent living before committing to in home care.

If you would like more information on in home care, independent living or assisted living contact me. I have a list of communities and service providers I can recommend to help you make your living options decision.

Best wishes, Matt

11 Reasons Home Sellers Should List During the Holiday Season

We are rolling toward the end of October and Thanksgiving is right around the corner.  Many home seller chose to pull their homes off the market this time of year and wait until Spring to sell.  Here are 11 reasons sellers should list during the Holiday Season.

11. By selling now, you may have an opportunity to be a non-contingent buyer during the Spring, when many more houses are on the market for less money! This will allow you to sell high and buy low.

10. You can sell now for more money and we will provide for a delayed closing or extended occupancy until early next year.

9. Even though your house will be on the market, you still have the option to restrict showings during the six or seven days around the Holidays.

8. January is traditionally the month for employees to begin new jobs. Since transfers cannot wait until Spring to buy, you need to be on the market during the Holidays to capture the market.

7. Some people must buy before the end of the year for tax reasons.

6. Buyers have more time to look for a home during the Holidays than they do during a work week.

5. Buyers are more emotional during the Holidays, so they are more likely to pay your price.

4. Houses show better when decorated for the Holidays.

3. Since the supply of listings will dramatically increase in January, there will be less demand for your particular home. Less demand means more money for you.

2. Serious buyers have fewer houses to choose from during the Holidays and less competition means more money for you.

And the number one reason why your seller should list during the Holidays …

1. People who look for homes during the Holidays are more serious buyers!

If you’d like to know if this is the best time or not to sell for you please contact me at 609-338-3773.

* repost from blog.KW.com