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Are Open Houses Worth It?

Are Open Houses Worth It?

Before Covid-19, open houses seemed to be a Sunday staple activity for would-be homebuyers. However, as the pandemic put a halt to almost all in-person activities, the number of open houses dwindled—sellers didn’t want strangers in their homes and buyers didn’t want to be in the company of too many people.

Are Open Houses Worth It?

7 Eco-Friendly Updates That Will Make Your Home More Marketable

7 Eco-Friendly Updates That Will Make Your Home More Marketable

Whether you’re preparing to sell your home or just looking to lower your carbon footprint, you may be surprised to know these green updates have a low up-front cost and can increase your return on investment.

7 Eco-Friendly Updates That Will Make Your Home More Marketable

Install low-emissivity storm windows. 

Low-emissivity storm windows reflect light into the home, helping you save on heating costs. Make sure to choose the right fit for your home, as the types vary greatly depending on the materials and coatings. The US Department of Energy reports that storm windows could be as effective at lowering energy costs as installing new ones.

7 Eco-Friendly Updates That Will Make Your Home More Marketable

Install a programmable thermostat. 

You could save as much as $180 a year by choosing a thermostat that can automatically adjust the temperature when you are not at home. Doing so could save about 15 percent on your heating bill annually. Some thermostats also have other energy-saving features, like filter-change reminders. Just make sure you choose a system that is easy to use.

7 Eco-Friendly Updates That Will Make Your Home More Marketable

Install ceiling fans. 

Installation cost varies based on existing electrical work. A single fan on high speed generally uses about 50 to 100 watts of power, resulting in about 800 kilowatts per year for a home with four ceiling fans—far less than a central air conditioning system. While fans are not able to actually cool the air, they can relieve you of feeling hot, and using them instead of A/C will save you a large amount of energy. Just make sure to switch them off when you leave the room!

7 Eco-Friendly Updates That Will Make Your Home More Marketable

Seal any cracks around the door and window frames with caulk. 

This is a no-brainer. Eliminating cracks will take only a few hours and could pay you dividends. About 30 percent of a home’s energy loss happens at an entryway. If you’re looking to go green, this is an easy way to do so.

7 Eco-Friendly Updates That Will Make Your Home More Marketable

Plant trees. 

This tip is perfect for the environment. If you want to save on energy costs, particularly in the summer, plant trees on the east, west, and northwest sides of your home. This will prevent the sun from coming through your windows and make your A/C work harder. Plant a tree to shade your central air unit, and you may save up to 35 percent on your home’s cooling costs.

7 Eco-Friendly Updates That Will Make Your Home More Marketable

Lower the temperature of your water heater to 120°F. 

An average of 15 to 25 percent of a home’s annual heating costs are related to heating the home’s water. This adjustment will take little time, and you will hardly notice a difference—until you look at the heating bill! When implemented, you’ll save up to $400 a year.

7 Eco-Friendly Updates That Will Make Your Home More Marketable

6 Ways to Overcome the Emotions of Selling a Home

6 Ways to Overcome the Emotions of Selling a Home

Selling your home can stir up a range of emotions you may not have expected. While you may feel excited about the opportunity to move into a new house, you may also experience feelings of sadness or loss as you prepare to sell your home. Use these tips to help overcome the wide range of emotions you may experience.

Confirm you’re ready

Whether you’re downsizing your space after retiring or upsizing to accommodate a growing family, you need to make sure you’re ready for the home-selling process. Remind yourself why you’re selling your home—you can even create a list of reasons to serve as motivation and reassurance. If you’re having trouble preparing your home to sell, remember it is the people and not the place that makes the memories so special. It is crucial that you only begin the listing process once you’re ready. Otherwise, you may be looking for reasons not to accept potential offers.

6 Ways to Overcome the Emotions of Selling a Home

Start staging early

You’ve created countless memories in your home, and these experiences can come rushing back as you begin to declutter and make changes to it. One of the first steps of the staging process is depersonalizing your homes, such as removing photographs or memorabilia, so buyers can imagine themselves living in the house. You may also need to change some of the personalized features you love, like painting the walls of a room a neutral color. Not seeing the smiling faces of loved ones throughout your home or the appearance of a room you’ve grown accustomed to may take some time to get used to. However, you may feel a bit of relief by detaching yourself from the house. By starting the staging process early, you give yourself time to work through any emotions you’ll experience.

Concentrate on the future

An excellent way to overcome any feelings you may experience when selling your home is to focus on the future instead of the past. If you’re going to be house hunting, get excited about the homes you get to consider. If you have already bought a new home, start planning projects you’d like to tackle or how you’d like to decorate your new space.

6 Ways to Overcome the Emotions of Selling a Home

Set a realistic sale price

While the memories you have made in your home are priceless, homebuyers are looking to pay strictly for the property. There can be a significant difference between your sentimental value and the fair market value. Avoid insisting on a steep price for your home, and work with your agent to decide on a reasonable price based on the current market.

Leave for showings and open houses

You should plan to leave your home during showings to avoid making buyers feel uneasy or pressured. However, sticking around in an emotional state could be even worse. Potential homebuyers may have less than flattering comments about aspects of your home, and it can be hard to hear. While it isn’t a personal insult, it can feel that way. These comments can be helpful, as any feedback your agent receives can help you address areas of your home that may need to be updated. Plan to go for a drive, visit friends or family, or hold a family bonding activity while potential buyers are inside your home.

6 Ways to Overcome the Emotions of Selling a Home

Don’t take negotiations personally

Once you find an interested buyer, they may come back with repairs or concerns they want to be addressed before closing. There’s no reason to take offense, as this is part of the negotiation process. Remain calm, and work with your agent to find a middle ground where you and the buyer are happy. Remember that your goal is to sell your home, and most home sales have negotiations.

Selling a home is an emotional experience. However, by remembering one chapter ending is another beginning, you can remain excited and hopeful about what lies ahead.

Contact Woodside-Aiken Realty today for help connecting with an Aiken, SC real estate agency. We are proud to assist current and future Aiken, South Carolina, and Woodside Plantation residents.

Beginner’s Guide to Being a Landlord

Beginner’s Guide to Being a Landlord

Taking on the role of landlord is a huge undertaking. You have renters to find (and trustworthy ones at that), a property to look after, and being the go-between for the many different people involved in this process. Follow these tips to ensure that being a landlord is rewarding, rather than a headache-inducing responsibility.

Beginner’s Guide to Being a Landlord

Screen tenants properly

Too often, landlords don’t screen potential tenants as thoroughly as they should, often causing mishaps further down the line. Don’t get so bogged down by other responsibilities that you forget to screen the people who will be living on your property. Look at credit scores, references, and if they have adequate employment before moving forward with an application.

Beginner’s Guide to Being a Landlord

Don’t short yourself

Your profit is coming from the rent, so make sure you’re charging the right amount to maximize your revenue. Look at the comps in the area, as well as accounting for any renovations you made to the space, and set the amount accordingly. You don’t want to short-change yourself, especially after the contract is signed and rent is locked into place.

Beginner’s Guide to Being a Landlord

Be as organized as possible

When it comes to managing a property and the tenants who live there, spreadsheets are your best friend. Keep track of important documents, make copies of everything, and stay on track with the various transactions and events that pop up throughout this process. You don’t want to be scrambling at the last minute if anything were to come up.

Beginner’s Guide to Being a Landlord

Make your guidelines clear

All of your rules and regulations should be outlined in the lease, but remember to reiterate in person. This is especially important concerning any pet restrictions, what day of the month rent is due, and what (or if) interior changes can be made to the space. Having these guidelines in writing is important, but it’s even more crucial to emphasize them in person before the lease is signed.

Beginner’s Guide to Being a Landlord

Being a landlord can be a breeze if you follow these simple tips!

When purchasing or selling a home, rely only on the most reputable Aiken, SC real estate agency. Give Woodside-Aiken Realty a call now, and we’ll use our vast real estate experience to make your next relocation as easy as possible.

Homebuying 101: Gen-Z and Millennial Edition

Homebuying 101: Gen-Z and Millennial Edition

 

Financial Considerations