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Video Blog by Andy Richardson

March 8, 2017

Six tips for staging your Wilmington NC Home to sell this Spring!

Staging your home to sell for top dollar this upcoming spring involves following six easy steps that I want to share with you today. 

 

  Want to buy a Wilmington Home? Search all homes for sale.


How can you stage your home to sell for top dollar this spring? There are six easy steps that will have you well on your way. 

The first step is to make a good first impression. The first impression a home makes comes from the outside, so make sure you pressure-wash the exterior, see that the lawn is well-manicured, and do anything else you need to do to the outside so that buyers aren’t turned off when they step out of their car. 

The second step is to keep the home in “show ready” condition. Before you leave the house to go to work, for example, make sure the beds are all made, all dirty clothes are in the hamper, and any dirty dishes are stowed away in the dishwasher. You might not always have time to run home and get things situated before a showing, so this due diligence can save you a lot of time and energy. 

 

The third step is to update your kitchen and bathrooms. This can be done rather inexpensively—you don’t need a total renovation from either room. For example, in the kitchen you can replace the hardware on your cabinets and add a fresh coat of paint on the walls. 

The fourth step is to remove any and all personal photos and trinkets. Since you’re moving anyway, you might as well pack these items up. Buyers need to be able to walk into the house and picture themselves living inside it, and this can be difficult if there are mementos of your family festooned everywhere. I also recommend removing about one-third of the furniture in your house to make the interior look larger.

The fifth step is to hide all pet items. Not everybody likes pets, so remove any water/food bowls, litter boxes, or pet beds scattered about. It’s especially important that none of these items show up in any of your listing photos. 

The sixth and final step is to hire an experienced agent. This means an agent that knows your market, knows how to price a house correctly, and knows how to market it for top dollar. 

If you're interested, we can offer you a free staging consultation and offer you some tips on how to prepare your home for the market. If you are interested or have any other questions, please feel free to give us a call or send me an email. We look forward to talking with you!
Posted in Home Selling
July 20, 2016

Top 6 Mistakes Buyers Should Avoid


Buying your first home is an exciting time and it can be a bit overwhelming. There are six common first-time buyer mistakes you should avoid: 

1. Buying what you want and not what you need. Avoid this mistake by starting out with a list of everything you need in a home. Give that list to your agent so he or she can find a property that meets your needs. 

2. Picking the wrong agent. You may have a buddy or cousin who just got their real estate license, or you might be friends with a part-time agent. These are not the best people to help you find a home. Ask your family and friends for referrals, and go to online review sites to find an agent who will work best for you. 

3. Not setting a realistic budget. Just because you’re pre-approved for $200,000 does not mean you should actually spend $200,000 on a home. I recommend looking at your current monthly expenses and figuring out a budget. Your monthly home payment should not exceed one third of your gross monthly income. 


4. Falling in love with the first property you see. You should at least look at three properties in the same area to get a good idea of what properties are selling for in that location. Comparing price and condition of similar homes will help you know whether to buy that first property or not. 

5. Not researching the neighborhood properly. You can’t always pick your neighbors, but you can pick your neighborhood. Be sure that you look at amenities, school systems, and more. School systems might not be important to you now, but it will matter when it comes time to sell that property again. 

6. Overlooking the hidden costs of buying a home. Even though buying a home has some great financial benefits, like creating equity, there are hidden costs to watch out for. Things like property taxes and insurance can increase your monthly payments. Plus, you should also be prepared for unexpected repairs or maintenance you will have to do for the property.

If you avoid these six mistakes and work with a good real estate agent, your first-time home buying experience will be a success. If you have any questions for me, give me a call. I would be happy to help you!

Posted in Home Buying, Tips
June 2, 2016

How accurate are Zillow's Zestimates?

As a Realtor in the Wilmington, NC area I love to help my clients buy and sell homes. 

Obviously, I would prefer if you did all your home searching on our site, as our listings are up to date, but Zillow isn't a horrible place to start. 

One of the things that I love to hear from sellers, especially those that are trying to sell their home on their own, is what they thing their home is worth and why. I heard many, many different answers over the years, but the one that stands out to me the most is "That is what Zillow said it was worth." 

Since this seems to be a common trend, I've decided that instead of telling you that Zillow is not accurate, I'd rather show you! 

Spencer Rascoff is the CEO of Zillow. You'd think if Zillow was going to get any Zestimate correct, then it would be his, right? WRONG

 

The Zillow Zestimate was just over 1.5 million....While his house sold for just over 1 million. The Zestimate was $500,000 OFF (or about 33%)!!

In fact, Zillow actually claims that the Zestimates are usually off by 7.9%...

7.9%!!! So if you are selling a $300,000 house, you could potentially be off by $23,700. (You can search all homes in Wilmington in the $300,000 price point here)

 

Want to know a better way to find out what your home would sell for in today's market? Visit our home seller evaluation site by clicking here or better yet, give me a call at 910-239-7653 or send me an email to Andy@AndyRichardsonRealEstate.com. 

Let me accurately price your home, give you a FREE Selling consultation and discuss with you the benefits of having a professional assist you with the marketing and sale of you home. 

Posted in News
April 27, 2016

Learn the History of Wrightsville Beach Homes at the Museum

Learn the history of Wrightsville Beach homes.For people who live in Wrightsville Beach homes and are interested in local history, the Wrightsville Beach Museum of History is a great place to spend a few hours, learning about how the community has developed over the years. Come in and see Wrightsville Beach real estate as it was in 1910, with a meticulously created scale model. See an exhibit on the beautiful Lumina Pavilion. Read about the way the community has weathered hurricanes and rebuilt after them. The history of the way people have interacted with the natural environment is also detailed. This museum is truly a community effort, as many of the exhibits are updated with memorabilia and photographs from residents.

Wrightsville Beach Real Estate Owners Visit the Museum for Free

The museum is located in one of Wrightsville Beach homes--the historic and charming Myers Cottage, built at the turn of the 20th century. The museum is closed Mondays and is open Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday from noon to 5 p.m.; and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. Admission is free, but donations are always welcome and help keep the museum open. Visit Wrightsville Beach Museum of History to see more about the history of the museum itself, find ways to get involved, and see a calendar of upcoming events.

 

Posted in News
April 26, 2016

Nature Lovers from Carolina Beach Homes Visit Carolina Beach State Park

Visit venus flytraps near Carolina Beach homes.The amazing natural beauty of the area is one of the great advantages for people living in Carolina Beach homes. Carolina Beach State Park is a local gem, where locals can relax in a tranquil natural environment. Six miles of trails wind through the park and the distinct habitats there. The paths are fairly flat and easy, making them accessible for people of all abilities and fitness levels. Walk along the shore, see the Venus flytraps, and enjoy the shady canopy created by longleaf pines and live oak. Visitors to this untouched area of Carolina Beach real estate may bring small boats to the park to explore three different water ecosystems. Go to Cape Fear for fresh water, the estuary at Masonboro Sound, or the Atlantic Ocean. The waters can be unpredictable, so exercise caution. Paddle NC offers seasonal kayaking and paddleboard rentals and tours.

Venus Flytraps are Native to this Carolina Beach Real Estate Location

The Visitor Center is a must-see for everyone from Carolina Beach homes. Get a deeper look at the biodiversity of the park, especially the fascinating Venus flytrap plant that makes its home there. There is a touch table for kids to explore, as well as a lot of information about the raccoons, foxes, deer, snakes, and birds who live at the park. Visit Carolina Beach State Park to find out about camping, boat permits, and upcoming events.

 

Posted in News
April 25, 2016

Theatre Goers from Wilmington Homes Go to Thalian Hall

Go to the theatre near Wilmington homes.Thalian Hall has been providing people from Wilmington homes with quality live entertainment and films since it opened in 1858. A stunningly beautiful building, which has been kept in pristine condition, the historic Wilmington real estate location is something of a landmark in town. It is was designed by John Montague Trimble, a premier 19th century theater designer, and is the last of his designs still standing today.

Visit Historic Wilmington Real Estate and See a Show

The calendar at Thalian Hall is full and diverse. New and challenging films are screened, and there is a film festival every year. The main stage sees nationally known performers, including Garrison Keillor, Susan Werner, and the Ladies of Laughter comic competition. Thalian Association Community Theatre holds its performances at the hall. Each year Forward Motion Dance Studio presents the Annual Arts Sensation, a showcase of local musicians and dancers that benefits the Cape Fear River Watch. Thalian Hall also exhibits the work of local artists in the Ruth & Bucky Stein Studio Theatre. The hall prides itself on its community involvement and theatre education programs. School children visit for specially priced shows throughout the year, and there are many shows geared for the enjoyment of the youngest residents of Wilmington homes.

Visit Thalian Hall online to read more about the history of the theatre, see a full schedule of upcoming events, and purchase tickets.

 

Posted in News