Debbie Glynn's Blog
If your house is on the market or you're preparing to put it up for sale, you probably feel like you have 101 things to do!
Fortunately, the list is much smaller than that and you can enlist the help of a real estate agent to handle many of the details.
To increase your chances for a fast sale, your agent will offer you suggestions on ways to enhance the eye appeal and curb appeal of your home. Although many of the things they point out may seem minor and superficial, the cumulative effect they'll have on the marketability of your home could be significant.
Minor flaws will be noticed by potential buyers and could easily give them the impression that your home hasn't been updated, properly maintained, and well taken care of. While that may not be true, remember that presentation is everything. And, if I may slip in one more old, but true cliché: "You don't get a second chance to make a good first impression!" That is as true in real estate sales as it is in making sure you're breath is fresh!
With that in mind, here's a list of some of the relatively inexpensive improvements you can make that will help you favorably impress prospective home buyers.
- There are a lot of cheap or relatively inexpensive repairs you can make, such as repairing and painting over damaged walls, oiling squeaky hinges, and replacing cracked windows and bathroom tiles. Toilets that run and faucets that leak are other examples of minor problems that can make a bad impression on potential buyers.
- Lighting, both natural and artificial, sets the mood in a room and can have an impact on how people perceive your home. It's usually advisable to let in as much natural light as possible and increase the wattage of lightbulbs in dark rooms and hallways. On the other hand, harsh lightening can also make an unfavorable impression, so it's necessary to find the perfect balance between glaring and dreary lighting. Most real estate agents are attuned to minor (or major) changes that need to be made to elements like lighting, décor, and furniture arrangement.
- Avoid the appearance of clutter, disorganization, and chaos in any part of your home! This would apply to everything from closets and cabinets to counter-tops, desks, and bedroom dressers. If your basement or attic is a "disaster area," that could reflect negatively on you and the attractiveness of your home. A good, general rule-of-thumb for controlling clutter is "less is more."
- Be prepared to do at least a little painting and a lot of cleaning to prepare your house for successful showings. A certain amount of landscaping and lawn care is also necessary, with tasks such as mowing, pruning, and weeding at the top of the list.
Open houses can be a great way to get to know a home and the neighborhood it sits in. Sure, the seller will be trying to put their best foot forward on the big day. But, you’ll still be able to get a chance to tour the home relatively uninterrupted.
But what should you look for in particular when attending an open house?
There are a number of things you can learn at an open house. Many prospective buyers spend the time looking at things like paint color and cosmetic touches that can easily be changed, and very little time considering important factors that should go into their home buying decision.
So, in today’s post, I’m going to cover some of the lesser known things you should be looking out for when you attend an open house. That way, you’ll know which houses are worth considering further and which ones should be left behind.
Not enough storage space
If you find yourself constantly running out of storage space (and who doesn’t?), you’ll want to make sure the home has ample space to store your belongings. If it doesn’t, see if you can find ways to repurpose areas for storage, such as spare bedrooms or garage space.
Overly scented areas
It’s perfectly normal for a seller’s agent to place one or two choice candles in the home during an open house.
However, if you notice some rooms have an overpowering smell of candles or air fresheners, there’s a good chance it’s there to mask offensive and hard to remove smells. Pet and cigarette odors are among the worst culprits.
The windows, doors, and cabinets should work like a dream
When attending an open house, take note of how well the doors open and close. If appropriate, ask the seller’s agent if you can try out the windows and cabinets as well.
Problems with these items can be signs of poor craftsmanship, cheap materials, or neglect.
Traffic and neighbors
If you’ve found what you think is the perfect home, it can be easy to see the world through rose-colored lenses.
However, it’s important to take them off when looking around the yard. Take note of the traffic level, and the amount of privacy the home receives. If you like the home, it’s also a good idea to stop by the neighborhood during rush house to gauge how traffic would affect your commute.
Air flow issues
Improper ventilation can lead to mold growth, especially in bathrooms and kitchens. Make sure bathroom vents and fans work properly, and check windows for condensation.
In rooms with sinks, check around the base of the sink and counter for signs of water damage or mold.
Large cracks in foundations or ceilings
While small, hairline cracks in the foundation of a home are completely normal, large ones can be dangerous.
They can allow water and pests to enter the home, causing all types of costly damages.
Keep those six tips in mind when you attend the open house, and be sure to bring a list of any other questions you might have for the seller’s agent.
Moving into a new home can often be a frantic, exhausting task. Matters are made worse if the house you are moving into wasn’t cleaned thoroughly after the previous movers left.
However, the best time to clean a house is before you move in. This is due to the fact that cleaning shelves is easier before they’ve been filled, and vacuuming carpets is simpler if the house doesn’t yet have any furniture.
So, in this article we’re going to show you the best way to clean your new home before you move in to avoid having to move objects around once you’ve brought them inside.
Before moving day
The idea moment to clean your new home is before the moving truck arrives. If possible, pick a day after the previous owners have moved out that is close to your move-in date. Bring all of your cleaning supplies with you, including cloths, towels, a duster, vacuum, hardwood floor polish, glass cleaner, bathroom cleaner, and so on.
It might be tempting to just start scrubbing as soon as you’re inside, but first take a moment to walk through the house and make a list of all the cleaning tasks you would like to accomplish before moving in.
Not only will your list help you determine how long you’ll need to clean, but it will also give some organization to your day and keep you on track.
On or after moving day
You don’t always have the luxury of being able to clean your new home beforehand. If you’re moving across states or are on a tight move-in/move-out schedule, you might have to clean your house as you move in.
In this case, the best solution is to organize your boxes and furniture by room. Then, when moving them inside, put them in the corner of a room in a neat pile. This will leave access to most of the room so that you can clean before putting things away.
Make sure you and your family are on the same page in terms of organizing items on moving day. If you have family members who start unpacking boxes, let them know they could be more helpful by picking up a duster or cleaning some windows rather than putting items in their future places.
Room by room cleaning
There are some rooms in your house that require special attention. Let’s start with the kitchen.
When it comes to cleaning your appliances (refrigerator, oven, microwave, etc.), it’s a good idea to spray on some degreaser or baking soda/vinegar solutions in advance to let them soak and loosen up any debris before you start scrubbing them. Soaking them all at once will help you save time cleaning.
The bathroom poses a challenge when moving in for two reasons. Since bathrooms tend to be small and crowded, it can be hard to work inside of them if there are boxes in the way. To avoid this, stack all of your bathroom items outside in the hallway or in the bathroom closet while you clean.
Although property buyers fall in love with a home for different reasons, there are four factors that generally cause people to prefer one house over another.
For sellers, the cost of making their home more appealing to buyers can vary widely. It depends on how recently they've painted, updated, and made improvements to their property -- both inside and out.
When it comes to owning and maintaining a residential property, one thing's for sure: Deterioration is going to happen! It's also human nature to postpone taking care of needed updates, minor repairs, and issues like fading paint. Even though the condition of your home may feel comfortable to you, prospective buyers will see things through a different lens. If you think you're "too close to the trees to see the forest," your real estate agent can provide you with valuable tips and an objective point of view.
While there are a lot of qualities house hunters look for when they're sizing up a house, here are a few key factors that can make the difference between a quick sale and a home that lingers on the market for months or more.
- Brightness: Inadequate light -- both natural and artificial -- can have a negative impact on the impression your home makes on potential buyers. If you're fortunate enough to have newer windows that let in lots of natural light, then the look and feel of your home will be much more appealing. Heavy drapes can detract from that effect, as can overgrown bushes and trees. Lighting fixtures that are noticeably outdated or glaringly bright will also work against you. Since one of your objectives as a seller is to make your home as appealing and cheerful as possible, proper lighting is a feature that's well worth keeping in mind.
- Cleanliness: A factor that comes in "a close second" to brightness is cleanliness (Some might even put it in the number-one spot). Visible signs of dust, dirt, spills, or smudges can make an otherwise attractive home unappealing to prospective buyers. Undesirable odors can also turn off most, if not all people that come over to check out your house. A solution for some sellers is to have their house cleaner stop by more often to help them stay one step ahead of dirt, grime, and household messes.
- Freshness: There are a lot of ways to create a feeling of freshness in your home, including opening windows (weather permitting), adding a coat of neutral-colored paint to scuffed walls, and displaying fresh flowers in a couple rooms -- especially the kitchen. Baking soda can also help eliminate unpleasant odors in your refrigerator, sink, and garbage disposal.
By Maureen McCarthy / For The Patriot Ledger
Posted on January 19, 2018
The Briarwood Drive neighborhood off King Street in West Hanover is a quintessential family-inspired enclave. Home to several dozen pristine Colonials and Capes and three cul-de-sacs, the single entrance subdivision features meticulously cared for properties and picturesque settings.
When Audrey O’Hare and her husband TJ started their home search in June 2017, the young couple with a baby-on-the-way, sought a child-friendly neighborhood in a “great town with a great school system.” Their search brought them to Hanover and the Briarwood neighborhood.
We knew this was the perfect place for us even before we finalized the purchase of our house,” said Audrey O’Hare who moved into their Tilden Lane Colonial in September 2017. “As we were going through the home inspection, the seller’s realtor introduced us to other neighbors as we were out and about and everyone was so warm and welcoming.”
The seller’s realtor, Debbie Glynn with Success Real Estates is very familiar with the neighborhood. Much like the O’Hare family, Debbie and her husband Gerry, and their two young sons Ryan and Braden, moved to Briarwood Drive because they wanted a family-friendly subdivision in a “great town with a great school system.” They moved to Hanover in 2004 and said it was the best decision for their family.
“The people in this neighborhood are truly like family. We have Christmas parties, celebrate new babies, birthdays, graduations and weddings together,” said Glynn. “My boys had the childhood I always dreamed they would have – playing in the cul-de-sac with neighborhood friends, swimming in their pools, trick or treating together and more.”
Traveling through Briarwood Drive, Clark Circle, Briggs Lane and others, you will find kids sledding in the snow; bike riding in warmer weather and playing street hockey in one of the cul-de-sacs.
Beyond Briarwood, neighboring subdivisions – Great Acres, Townsend Woods, Wood Hollow, Olde Forge Road and more – boast the same quintessential, family-inspired feel. Recent sales for the area range between $600,000 up to $910,000.
Forge Pond Park, a 46-acre multi-use park located on King Street, is only a half mile from the Briarwood Drive neighborhood. “I love Forge Pond Park,” said Glynn. “We walk our dog there often and meet friends to walk a few times a week.”
Located 25 miles south of Boston, Hanover features a newer senior center, state-of-the-art high school, a vibrant Parent-Teacher-Alliance (PTA) and volunteer-rich historical society, to name a few.
Although the O’Hare and Glynn families only met a few months ago, they quickly found they have a great deal in common.
“We have become really good friends,” said Debbie Glynn. “And I can’t wait to see their little boy grow up playing in the cul-de-sac like ours did.”