The John Barrett Real Estate Team
KELLER WILLIAMS REALTY | 774-836-0235 | JBarrettRE@kw.com


Posted by The John Barrett Real Estate Team on 7/18/2018

Receiving a low offer on a home can be frustrating for a seller. But, you’re likely to see at least one or two offers on your property that are lower than you would like.

Right now, the housing market is filled with young professionals burdened with student loans, rising costs of living, and stagnating wages. So, it’s no wonder that they’re trying to save money anywhere they can.

In today’s post, we’re going to talk about what to do when you get a low offer so you can set yourself up for a sale that you’re happy with.

Don’t refuse outright

The first thing to know about low offers is that they can sometimes turn into something that both you and the buyer are happy with. Many successful home sales started at a number that the seller considered too low, but--through negotiation--was brought to a higher price and better deal overall.

Many sellers are uncomfortable with the idea of negotiation. Most people seldom negotiate prices unless they are buying a car, and even then would prefer to avoid the hassle.

For others, negotiation is a normal part of everyday life. Flatout refusing an offer, especially if you aren’t receiving many other higher offers, could be a missed opportunity.

Compare your asking price with similar homes nearby

Odds are that you and your agent have already done your research and found an asking price that is comparable in your neighborhood. But home prices fluctuate. To reassure yourself that your asking price is fair, take another look at homes up for sale that are around the same age and size of your home.

Take time to craft a counteroffer

Once you’ve had time to talk the offer over with your family and real estate agent (and maybe vented a bit), it’s time to come up with a counteroffer.

There are a few options for making a counteroffer that don’t involve significantly lowering the amount you stand to gain from the home sale. First, you could offer to relieve the buyer of some of the closing costs, such as paying for the inspection. Or, if you planned on leaving new appliances in the home, you could lower your asking price but take the appliances when you move.

Weigh your options

If the buyer still won’t raise their offer close to your asking price, it’s probably a good time to move on and rethink your sale strategy.

Take some time to consider the sale as a whole. If you aren’t receiving many other offers, it might be time to consider lowering to price or rethinking your marketing plan. You might consider repainting and taking new photos, or changing up your listing to highlight some other features of the house.





Posted by The John Barrett Real Estate Team on 3/28/2018

Finding the ideal home for your family's needs is no easy task, but if you stay organized and focused, the right property is sure to come along!

One of your most valuable resources in your search for a new home is an experienced real estate agent -- someone you trust and feel comfortable working with.

They'll not only set up appointments for you to visit homes in your desired price range and school district, but they'll also help keep you motivated, informed, and on track. Once you know and have shared your requirements (and "wish list") with them, your agent will be able to guide you on a path to finding the home that will best serve your needs -- both short- and longer term.

In addition to proximity to jobs, good schools, and childcare, you'll probably want to pick a location that's close to supermarkets, recreation areas, and major highways. If you have friends or family in the area, then that would also be a key consideration.

While your immediate needs are a good starting point for creating a checklist of requirements, it's also a good idea to give some thought to what you may need in the future. Plans to expand your family, possibly take care of aging parents, or adopt pets are all factors to consider when looking at prospective homes to buy.

If you have college-age children or recent graduates in the family, you might have to save room for them in your new house. Many grads need a couple more years of financial and moral support from their parents (not to mention home-cooked meals) before they're ready to venture out on their own. Houses with a finished basement, a separate in-law apartment, or even a guest cottage on the property are often well-suited for multigenerational households.

In many cases, people tend to buy a home based on their emotional reaction to it, and then justify the purchase with facts. For example, if the price was right and a particular house reminded you of your childhood home, then that combination of elements could prompt you to make an offer on the house -- assuming those childhood memories were happy!

Sometimes prospective buyers might simply love the look and feel of a neighborhood or the fact that there's a spacious, fenced-in back yard in which they can envision their children or dogs happily (and safely) playing.

According to recent surveys, today's buyers are attracted to homes that have energy efficient features, separate laundry rooms, and low-maintenance floors, counter tops, and backyard decks. Gourmet kitchens, stainless steel appliances, a farmhouse sink, a home office area, and outdoor living spaces are also popular features. Although your tastes may differ, many house hunters also like design elements such as subway tiles, hardwood floors, shaker cabinets, pendant lights, and exposed brick.

When it comes to choosing the home that you and your family will live in for the next few years, your top priorities will probably include a sufficient amount of space, plenty of convenience, and a comfortable environment in which you and your loved ones can feel safe, secure, and happy for the foreseeable future!





Posted by The John Barrett Real Estate Team on 3/14/2018

If you plan to sell your home, it may be helpful to prepare for a difficult negotiation with a homebuyer.

Although your home may be in great shape and you've set a fair price for it, there are no guarantees that you'll be able to avoid a long, complex home selling negotiation. However, a home seller who prepares for a difficult negotiation now may be better equipped than others to remain calm, cool and collected throughout the home selling journey.

Now, let's take a look at three tips that home sellers can use to get ready for a difficult negotiation.

1. Assess the Housing Market Closely

A home seller who sets a competitive price for his or her residence may be able to avoid a complicated home selling negotiation entirely.

To determine a fair price for your house, a property appraisal is ideal. During this appraisal, a property inspector will evaluate your home's interior and exterior and help you identify any problem areas. Then, you can complete assorted home improvement projects and price your house accordingly.

Furthermore, it is important to assess the prices of comparable houses in your area. With this housing market information at your disposal, you can enter a home selling negotiation with data to support your arguments.

2. Understand Your Home Selling Goals

How a home seller approaches a negotiation may vary based on his or her goals.

For example, a home seller who needs to move out of a house as soon as possible may be willing to go above and beyond the call of duty to satisfy a property buyer's requests. By doing so, this home seller can speed up the property selling cycle.

On the other hand, a home seller who can afford to be patient may be unwilling to budge on various homebuyer requests.

Consider your home selling goals closely before you enter a negotiation with a homebuyer. And if you feel uncomfortable, you can always walk away from a negotiation and reenter the housing market.

3. Focus on the End Results

A home selling negotiation can become contentious, but it is important to remember the end goals of this negotiation.

Ultimately, a successful negotiation will meet the needs of both a property seller and buyer. If a negotiation heavily favors a homebuyer, a home seller should be ready to exit the negotiation.

A home selling negotiation can be stressful, and you should be ready to take breaks as needed. For example, spending a few minutes meditating or walking outdoors may help you clear your head and reenter a home selling negotiation with a fresh perspective.

Lastly, if you want additional support, real estate agents are happy to help you. A real estate agent knows what it takes to negotiate with homebuyers and will do everything possible to ensure all parties involved in a negotiation get the best results.

Take the guesswork out of a home selling negotiation – use these tips, and you can prepare for a difficult negotiation before you add your house to the real estate market.




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Posted by The John Barrett Real Estate Team on 4/2/2017

Home selling regrets are not the work of fiction. Each year, Americans sell their house only to look back and regret that they hadn’t done something differently. Putting too much focus on a single part of the home selling process could lead to regrets. So too could rushing to find a buyer.

Mistakes that you make as a seller could haunt you for months. Before you sign a deal with a buyer, review the below list to avoid making home selling regrets.

  • Focusing only on money – Walking away with a good overall purchase price for your house is great. However, it’s not great if clauses in the contract make you responsible for all of the closing, inspection and repair costs. Don’t get consumed with the overall amount that you’reselling your house for. Pay attention to small details.
  • Pricing too high or too low – As much as you don’t want to over price your house and drive potential buyers away, you also don’t want to price your house too low. People tend to value a product based on its price. Make sure that your house’s price is competitive. An experienced,reputable real estate agent can help you with price setting.
  • Being dishonest – Not telling buyers about hidden problems could keep you up at night, especially if you know that the house has termites, a swarm of seasonal pests or a wiring problem that’s a fire hazard.  
  • Not caring about the buyer – Setting a competitive, yet fair price on your house isn’t the only way to show buyers that you care about them. It’s good for buyers to know if there have been a rash of burglaries on the street that you live on. It’s also good to select buyers who will help to keep the community strong.
  • Feeling desperate and accepting the next offer –There are times when you may have already bought another house. This could cause you to feel pressured to accept the first offer on your house. To avoid this home selling regret, wait until you sell your house to buy another home.For example, you could rent an apartment after you sell your house to avoid paying two mortgages.
  • Being too attached to the property – No buyer will seem right to you if you’re too attached to your home.
  • Trying to impress buyers – Stage to highlight the best parts of your house, not to impress buyers with your interior design skills or your economic level. You don’t have to buy expensive furniture for house staging. You could use your current furniture during staging.
  • Repairing every hole in the wall – Your house does not have to look brand new. You don’t have to repair every dent, hole and crack that you see with a magnifying glass. Get your home up to housing codes and in good condition, but, it doesn’t have to be perfect.
  • Not cleaning up pet hairs – Buyers aren’t turned on by seeing pet hairs. Get out the shampooer and vacuum cleaner and get pet hairs up.
  • Improve curb appeal – Strengthen your house’s curb appeal and you could get more money for your house. Get weeds out of the yard, treat the grass, clean up pet poop and plant flowers in your front and back yards.

There’s a lot to do when you sell your house. You have to clean, advertise that you’reselling your house, prepare your house for staging, negotiate with buyers and then pack and move to your new home. The last things that you want to deal with are home selling regrets.





Posted by The John Barrett Real Estate Team on 10/30/2016

If you're planning on selling your home in the coming years, now is the perfect time to start making home improvements that will increase the value and demand of your home once it's on the market. Increasing the market value of your home, however, isn't just a matter of replacing old appliances or dressing up rooms to look more luxurious. Follow these five expert tips on how to increase your home value without wasting time or money on projects that won't pay off.

Paint everything

One basic improvement that will almost always pay off is a fresh coat of paint in each room of your home. It isn't a very costly improvement, and it can both clean up and modernize rooms that are in need of an update. Remember that your walls make up the majority of what buyers see when they walk through your home. The wall paint makes up the big picture that all of the small details of your home fit in, therefore your paint colors should be chosen to fit the style of the home and the time that we live in. Avoid colors that are too dark or too blindingly white. If you're at a loss for which colors you want to use, try out a free color palette creator online to experiment with different schemes.

Door replacement

As a new home buyer approaches your home for the first time their eyes are going to be locked on the door. Take advantage of good first impressions with a quality door. One that compliments the exterior color of your home will do wonders to improve the overall appearance of your home. Aside from their aesthetic value, doors also provide insulation and security. Choose a door that is EnergyStar certified to keep the heat in, but also make sure it has top rate locking mechanisms so the next family to live in your home feels safe.

Increase storage space

Storage capacity is highly sought after in the house market. No one wants to drive to a storage container just to get their belongings. Having all of your property in one place makes things less complicated. Increasing storage space can seem difficult or impossible, but there are a few tricks that will help convince potential home buyers that they won't run out of room. Here are four of our favorites:
  • Install storage beds in the bedrooms
  • Buy a kitchen table with a storage cabinet
  • Put a bench in the mudroom that has storage inside
  • Install cabinets in your garage or shed to take advantage of unused vertical space

Kitchen and bathroom makeover

Two rooms in your home that will attract the most attention are the kitchen and bathroom(s). The kitchen has endless opportunity for upgrades. Installing a new sink, cabinets, and a hanging pot rack can all give your kitchen a modern makeover. In the bathroom, surface level upgrades like a new toilet seat and shower curtain and bathroom mirror go a long way. Upgrading an old bathtub, shower head, and toilet are also great ways to increase the value of the room. Keep in mind energy efficiency when purchasing any of these items. Know the neighborhood Determining which home improvements will most increase the value of your home is dependent on many factors, including the neighborhood you live in. It is possible to "over-improve" your home to the point where it looks too luxurious next to your neighbors' homes. Ask the experts--real estate agents and contractors--for advice about improving homes in your neighborhood.







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