Last week, we started talking about my Top 10 Tips for Buying and Selling in 2016. If you missed Part One of the series, visit out blog page at http://coloradodream.wpengine.com/blog/ and catch up. In the meantime, here is my Part Two list to help you buy and sell in 2016.
- Sellers: Know which projects you can do to improve your value. We are always amazed at some of the projects that sellers feel like they need to do to improve their home to get it ready for sale. Epoxying the garage floor or replacing the fence is sure nice but it’s not going to get you a higher price. Make sure that you are doing improvements that add value when you sell, like kitchens and baths. You don’t have to spend a fortune; good updates can be made on a budget. Moreover, make sure that you know what’s in and what’s out. Granite is out, Quartz is in. Small tiles are out, large subway tiles are in. Dark colors are out, light colors are in. If you are not sure what to do, have your agent connect you with a good designer or stager.
- Buyers: Make sure that you know all the costs. You are buying a 300,000-dollar house but it costs a lot more than $300,000 to buy that house. There are closing fees, loan origination fees, sometimes Realtor fees, and there are pre-paids and reserves– just to name a few. Then there is the cost for inspection, appraisal, moving, and starting up services like cable, phone, trash, etc, etc. Make sure that you have your down payment plus extra to handle all the additional costs.
- Sellers: Make sure that you know where you are going before you sell. We know a lot of people who would sell their home if they thought they could find a better home or a replacement home. Inventory is tight all around the country so finding your next home can be a challenge. Our team specializes in finding off market homes. In fact, about 30% of our sales last year were finding homes for our buyers that were not on the market. Make sure that your real estate agent has a pipeline of off market properties. If you are still unsure about which direction you will go, but you want to take advantage of the hot seller’s market, then put your home up for sale and plan on renting after it sells. This will give you more flexibility when it comes to buying because you’ll have cash in hand and will be able to make a non-contingent offer.
- Buyers: Don’t be afraid of up and coming neighborhoods. Sure, it’s not the ideal neighborhood now but you can tell from the scrapes, remodels, and updating that the neighborhood is turning around. This is a great opportunity to get in early, remodel the home, and see big dividends down the line once the neighborhood is the new HOT place to live.
- Sellers and Buyers: Don’t try to time the market. I have met very few people who can time a market. Chances are, if you sold high, you also bought high. The only time that you sell high and buy low is if you rent in between the market shifts. Remember, purchase price doesn’t affect your monthly payment as much as interest rate, so pay attention to interest rate instead of purchase price.
Dan Polimino is a Broker/Owner with the Colorado Dream House Team, Keller Williams Realty DTC. Contact the Colorado Dream House Team at 720-446-6325, firstname.lastname@example.org, codreamhouse.com or coloradodreamhouse.com