selling (17)

What is the Purpose of an Appraisal?


A mortgage has many specific pieces involved in it. Obviously there is the money supplied by the lender to pay the seller for their asking price. There are also many other items such as the title report and title insurance, a survey (sometimes), proof of homeowner insurance policy and an appraisal. An appraisal is actually one of the more important pieces and yet it still brings questions from buyers and sellers alike.

Required by the Lender

First and foremost, if a home is being purchased through the use of a mortgage then the lender will require a formal appraisal. A licensed appraiser works independently of the real estate agent and the lender to ensure that there is no undue influence on the process. The appraiser’s report will indicate if the home is worth the asking price.

Appraisal ordered after a Selling Price has been negotiated

The appraiser is contacted after the real estate agent(s) and all associated parties have worked out a price for the home. The appraiser will look at the contract along with a host of other items such as

* Square footage of the home

* Local property taxes for the home

* When the home was built

* General shape and condition of the property

* Average sales price of similar homes in the area

The price for the appraisal depends on the area of the country. Sometimes the appraisal fee is paid by the borrower up front and other times it may be paid as part of the closing costs.

Wise to Inspect First and Appraise Second

In an ideal world the buyer of a home would hire a home inspector to review a property before the home is appraised. The job of an inspector is to seek out any potential problems with the property. This can be as simple as finding a loose door knob to as complicated as finding out the entire heating and ventilation system needs replacing. Once the inspector has looked at the home the appraiser can approach the property with some idea of any possible short comings of the home and assign the correct value to the home. In a worst case scenario an inspection could lead a buyer to cancel a contract and look for a different home.

The Journey of the Appraisal

Once the appraiser has finished the report a copy will be sent to the mortgage lender and possibly the real estate agents. If the buyer paid for the appraisal up front then they too will get a copy when it is complete. Otherwise, the buyer will receive a copy at closing.

The lender, whether it is a bank or local mortgage company, will have their own process to review the appraisal and ensure the numbers look accurate. If the value of the home is much lower than expected then the lender may cancel the loan. On the flip side, if the home is determined to be worth more than the asking price then the buyer will have instant equity.

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What do Real Estate Agents do to Sell a Home?

Outside of the legal and medical professions, most industries are filled with people that work their tails off without the general public understanding their line of work. This is quite common for people that work in the real estate industry. Here are some of the many things that an agent does to sell a home for a new listing.

Extensive Photos

realtor-pin-1As the old saying goes “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Real estate agents will take lots of pictures to show off the best aspects of the home. When prospective buyers have an opportunity to see multiple pictures of a place before they view the property it helps to get the buyers more familiar with the property. It also reduces the number of people who are certain they will not buy a home based on the presence, or lack of, certain features.

Social Media Announcement

With multiple pictures of the property in hand, an agent can post to the various social media sites and alert all their friends and connections that the home is now available. With the multiple interactions found on most of the social media sites this is a great way to spread the word and let potential buyers know about the home's availability and best selling points. Good agents post to multiple sites like Facebook, Google +, Twitter and even Pinterest.


Many real estate agents connect with their past clients and prospects by sending out a monthly or quarterly newsletter. The newsletter can be sent via email or the old fashioned way of postal mail. This gives the agent a chance to pass along helpful information, such as home maintenance tips, energy saving advice as well as all of their new home listings. This is an easy way to reach people that may not be active on social media and still give them a chance to see the home in pictures.


Some agents aggressively market their listings by sending out emails to their prospective buyer base. These email lists are built over time from a multitude of different sources like, previous clients, internet leads and people that have signed up via their website. Since some home buyers can spend many years searching for a home, this large database of previous contacts can be a key component to selling your home.

On top of that, most agents will present any new listings to their own personal buyer clients who might be interested. Since they have in-depth knowledge of the home, it's much easier to explain the benefits. They will also share the new listing with other agents in their office/company in hopes they promote it to their buyer clients.

MLS Listing

One of the most important things an agent can do is list a home with the MLS (Multiple Listing Service). This service is accessible by local real estate agents and to Realtors® across the country via certain home search websites. When a buyer comes to an agent and asks for a list of potential homes, the agent will use the MLS service to find all available homes in the area. Agents pay yearly to have access to this database in order to be ready when either a buyer or seller is in need.


When a potential buyer wishes to see a home the real estate agent is the one that meets them at the home and gives them a tour. This is where the real estate agent can show off the home and brag about the top features of the property. Agents often make themselves available day or night for showing to accommodate the schedules of both the buyers and the sellers.

Open Houses

Agents often hold open houses on the property. These typically occur on the weekends, most commonly on Sunday. Occasionally, open houses are held on weeknights as well. An open house provides a 'no pressure' forum for people to tour the home. Many times the attendees are not actively looking to purchase at that moment and many visitors will actually be neighbors. Either way, getting your home in front of the largest audience is key. Any open house visitor could know someone 'in the market' for a home who they may tell.

An experienced real estate agent will put together a complete marketing plan for any new listing to give their client the best chance of selling the property at the anticipated price. Click the following link to see how Rock Realty can successfully market and sell your house: Rock Realty Home Marketing Plan

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Signs That You are Ready to Be a Home Seller

Selling your HomeMost people easily recognize when the time is right to buy their very first home. They are tired of their current situation and the appeal of getting their own place is too enticing to resist. However, the signs are not quite so easy to notice when it is time to sell the home. Some home owners have a long, drawn out inner debate before coming to the conclusion that they need to sell and move to another place. Here are some ways that you can know the time has come for you to sell your current home.

The Attachment to the Home is Gone

Many people hang on to a home for far too long because they are emotionally connected to the home. The nursery where they brought home their first born, the hallway where a baby took its first steps and other sentimental memories make it tough to part ways with a home. However, if the idea of selling the home brings about a feeling more of relief and not sadness then you are emotionally ready to move on.

A New Plan Has Developed

If you have already picked out another home, or decided what the next home should look like and what features are necessary, then you are ready to move on. Knowing where you wish to live and what the house should look like is a huge step in getting ready to sell your current home and move to a new place. This type of preparation is typically very motivating for most people and helps them to get everything in order for the move.

Your Finances are In Order

Getting ready to purchase that first home is quite an experience for most people. Monitoring credit scores, reducing debt and keeping all payments up to date while saving up a nest egg takes time and discipline. However, once those habits are in place it is easier to maintain a solid credit score. Also, if you have been in the home for any length of time it is likely that there is built up equity which can be used as a down payment on the next home. All of these factors make it simpler to sell a home and be in the right financial position to purchase another home.

It is Time to Move On

Lots of people have come to the realization that they need to change jobs, end a personal relationship or sell some of their long held items. When the thought occurs to you that you would be OK with the idea of getting rid of your house, then the time has come to move on to a new place.

Sell your home for top dollar, by putting it in front of the largest online pool of buyers! Check out the Rock Realty Marketing Plan.

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To understand the importance of setting the right price, you first need to understand the market place. When selling your home, your market place isn't a specific location, instead it's more of a worldwide economic system for exchanging goods and services. More specifically, the market place for home sales is more a figurative place than a literal place. None the less, in either case, the market place is where the law of supply and demand operates. Understanding how the law of supply and demand affects your home value in a competitive market place is key to setting the right price.


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Simple Ways to Get Your Home Ready to Sell

photo credit: Neil Kremer via photopin cc
photo credit: Neil Kremer via photopin cc

For those homeowners that have waited to sell their home, heed the advice of Nike: “Just Do It.”  Interest rates are still really low and the upcoming changes in mortgage lending may disqualify some buyers.  Now is the time to sell your home.  In order to help your home sell quickly follow the timely advice offered below.

Spend a Little Now to Get More Later

With so many homes available many buyers are seeking out a property that is move-in ready.  This means that small repairs and maintenance items will possibly turn off some buyers.  Take a walk through the home and pick out the small things that need to be fixed.  Leaking faucets, a chipped tile, a flaky bit of paint and other similar items can negatively impact the appearance of your home.

You should also consider spending a little money to get the carpets thoroughly cleaned and ask a local heating/air conditioning company to service your unit.

Put Yourself in the Shoes of the Buyer

If you are looking for a new home, what items are important to you?  The majority of people want to live in a clean home that smells nice with lots of room in the closets, cabinets and other storage areas.  Therefore, you should put a lot of time in to making your home look clean, neat and organized. Start with the cabinets and closets.  Remove as much clutter as possible and even add some shelves if it helps improve the look.  Go through all the rooms and put everything away in a nice, orderly fashion.  Finally, get a few aroma dispensers and put them throughout the house.

Make People Interested in Coming Inside

So many homeowners spend time, money and a lot of effort improving the inside of the home that they ignore the outside appearance.  It is important to have an inviting appearance.  Homeowners should trim all the bushes, clean out the gutters, make sure the driveway and walkway are clear and clean the windows.  For people that have siding, consider power washing the siding as well.  It is really important that the front door and the surrounding entrance area look clean and homey.

Two Important Rooms: Bathrooms and Kitchens

The bathroom and kitchen will usually have more influence over selling a home than any other part of the house.  It is a good idea to go through these rooms and spend extra time, and even money, to make sure they look attractive and modern.

Many types of cabinets can be painted with a little bit of planning and work.  All bathroom plumbing should be in good working order.  Make sure there is plenty of light with good looking fixtures and that the ventilation to both the kitchen and bathroom is more than adequate.  Also, make sure the counters are clean and devoid of clutter.

It may seem like a crazy idea to spend money on a home that you are planning to sell.  However, spending money in the right areas can greatly improve your chances of selling the home faster and may yield a good return on the investment.

Why list your home with Rock Realty?? Rock Realty Marketing Outline

Recent Testimonials: Rock Realty Client Testimonials

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The Pitfalls of Buying Real Estate On Your Own

You can buy real estate on Craigslist, or straight from a Facebook page. You may even buy one from someone you know or from a friend of a friend of a friend. There are, indeed, a lot of ways to buy a new property directly that the thought of not tapping a friendly real estate agent can be taken out of the picture. But is it wise?
Not As Simple As You Think
In this day and age, buying a property without the help of a real estate agent may sound appealing. You can strike a deal on your own and simply be done with it. But buying real estate is not as simple as going to Target and picking out the latest HDTV or a pair of laced-up boots. It requires due diligence and tons of paperwork. With the staggering amount of money involved, it is only imperative that you understand the common pitfalls people encounter when buying a real estate property without the aid of a realtor.
 Not Reading or Understanding the Fine Print
One of the most prevalent mistakes in buying a property on their own is not thoroughly reading and digesting the fine print of the purchase contract.  As a rule, purchase contract is essential on real estate transaction to warrant its veracity and legality. There is no room for verbal agreements in a real estate buy-out, even when dealing with a family member or a next-door neighbor-friend. A purchase contract is usually prepared by the seller with the aid of a lawyer. If you have no idea about legal jargons, consider hiring a lawyer or have a real estate agent do the dealings for you.
 Not Safe for Your Earnest Money
In most real estate transactions in the US and the UK, earnest money deposit is usually given to secure or put the property on reserve for you. Some people call this reservation fee while others call this initial down payment. This can be very misleading and can put a huge dent on your financial coffers should the deal turn out to be a dud. To guarantee that you put your money right where it’s due, an escrow company is a wise option but having a real estate agent to handle it for you would be so much better as they can easily connect with a title company to keep it safe.
 Big Room for Complacency
Unless you have complete firsthand information about a real estate property, it is imperative that you do earnest ocular inspection. Some buyers, however, in their eagerness to buy from someone they are “familiar” with tend to be complacent. A real estate agent usually gives full disclosure on a property to protect their reputation in the market. Through them, you can gather “black-and-white” information about the property and assess it from there.

The risks can be quite high when buying real estate on your own. This is even more so when you rely so much on buyer-seller trust and relationship factor. When it comes to money, remember these words: it is a jungle out there and you, the buyer, are always the unsuspecting prey. If it is a real-deal hassle-free investment you want, have a professional and trustworthy real estate agent to seal the deal for you.
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Quick Selling Tips When Staging Homes

Selling a home is not for the faint of heart, whether done privately or via the services of a real estate company. It takes time, effort, and deeply thought-of strategies to enhance your chances of snagging the right deal in the market. A quick sale is good, but one that comes with sure profits would be much better. One way to ensure a quick profit-making sale is by organizing a home staging initiative accordingly.
Significance of Home Staging
Staging a home is one lofty preparation of your abode prior to its presentation to the market. Its main objective is to make a home more appealing to more prospective buyers in the shortest time possible. Here, a homeowner or a realtor will get rid of the obvious flaws of a home such as clutter, defects and any sign of dilapidation. It systematizes clean-up, repairs, or home improvements to further enhance the overall aesthetic appeal of a property. From interior to exterior, home staging will make a potential buyer envision the property as her own.
Important Areas to Consider
Staging your home largely depends on your budget. If you can afford major improvements, then, the better leverage you have over its selling price. However, a limited budget is quite common among homeowners selling their homes. With this, it is wise to focus on areas that directly influence first impression of a buyer such as the landscape or exterior aesthetics, front entrance, kitchen, bathroom, masters’ bedroom, and living area.
Don’t Just Clean, Manage Your Clutter
Cleanliness is a must when it comes to home selling. A buyer love spotless properties. From bathroom tiles to kitchen countertops, ceiling, and toilet bowls, it is your goal to make every nook and cranny immaculate. Of course, make sure to remove unnecessary odors, too. Your favorite garlicky smell might not work with everyone. This is even more so for homeowners who love smoking indoors. Scented candles might do the trick in eliminating unpleasant odors.
When cleaning, consider organizing things like furniture, appliances, and decorative elements to generate ample legroom. No matter how pristine the floors and ceilings, if you have knick-knacks lying everywhere, your efforts are for naught. Sell, store or donate unnecessary stuff. Do not hide these in your closet or garage. Buyers check those, too.
Make An Exterior Space Standout
Does your home have a patio or garden? How about a lawn or a backyard? Let any of this space standout. Repaint your patio furniture or change its flooring. Mow grass on your front- or backyard. Try adding vibrant and fragrant blooms. An excellently defined exterior attracts buyers instantaneously.
Exert Efforts on Defining Interior Spaces
Buyers have the tendency to maximize square footage when looking for the best deal. Increase your leverage by creating fluidity in design and richly designed purpose for its space. Transform an attic into a mini-office or a guest room. Make your garage double as a storage room. Your basement can be an entertainment room or an office. A buyer may not use it with the purpose you have in mind, but this will give him a perspective that every inch of your home is functional.  
Play With Paint and Lighting
When thinking of a paint job, keep in mind that colors are highly personal in nature. What could be ideal for you may not apply to everyone. For a limited budget, a repaint using neutral colors will help “de-personalize” a home. To add more life to your new paint, updating interior lighting and fixtures will help enhance its appeal.

Indeed, home staging is of great help in increasing a home’s face value and in quickening its resale. Though preparations are essential, it is important not to invest a lot in the processes involved. By planning carefully the home staging processes, you are guaranteed to get the most bang for your buck.

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If you think buying a home is tough, try selling your own. Buying usually gives you due advantage during negotiations, but selling can be more challenging. In real estate, the seller usually takes the brunt of finding the right buyer and facilitating transfer of documents while obtaining a lucrative deal as planned. With much of your time spent on your business or work or an impending transfer, finding time to sell your property in a fast yet productive manner can be best done with a real estate agent in tow. With hundreds of “expert” real estate agents out there, finding one that can deliver what you need can be daunting. But this dilemma can be used to your advantage by simply asking the right questions.
1. Are you an accredited real estate agent in the state where the sale should be done, for how long and how many successful sales have you done in the past 2 years?
It is important to check on a realtor’s credentials vis-à-vis state accreditation, references and reliable sources. Accreditation by the National Association of Realtors would be a plus. Like everything else, experience does matter when it comes to facilitating real estate sales. Though it does not necessarily follow that more established realtors are better than new ones, a realtor’s experience will help you gauge efficiency and turnaround time for property sales. Of course, the number of successful deals complete with references will help you verify if the realtor can live up to the demands of the current real estate market and your expectations.
2. Do you operate locally? If so, how do you plan your sales strategies?
If you are selling a property in Pennsylvania, it would be a total waste of money to spend time and effort with a New York realtor. A real estate agent operating locally usually has enough information on the current real estate demographics, demands, and local marketing solutions to amplify the sale. Make sure to ask how he plans to sell. Dig deep into his marketing tactics, home staging, and other initiatives that quickens the pace of the sale process.
3. What is your selling method?
There are many ways to sell your property using a realtor – auctions, EOI, POA, tender agreement, or direct selling ( i.e, from realtor to buyer). Unless you will be selling your property “as in”, ask carefully if renovations, upgrades o r repairs are necessary.
4. Do you work alone or with a team? Communication method?
A real estate agent no matter how adept in dealing a real estate market should never work alone. Tons of workload awaits them. Whether working with actual or virtual assistants, a realtor must always have a team that does paper transactions, online marketing, and various data management solutions. This gives realtors more focus on his or her core competencies like negotiations, renovations, and arranging an open house. Keep in mind also the communication method and by how frequent. Look for a realtor that provides an open communication line with constant update to his client.
5. How do you charge your commission and by how much?
Normally 3%-5% commission is rewarded to real estate agents but this can be negotiable and can highly vary from state to state. It can also be fixed or according to tiered percentages. Always analyze its impact before signing a deal. Choose one that can deliver great value to your property.
Indeed, selling your home or any real estate property can be an overwhelming experience. Having a capable real estate agent as an ally in this quest is a wise move. By asking these questions, you can ensure finding the right person to entrust your property, way for a quick sale, and more value on your property.
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The Art of Negotiations When Buying A Home

There is no doubt that you want the best deal possible when buying a real estate property. Negotiations are commonplace in the real estate market. But, often, one only thinks about offer-to-buy and counter-offer as their main source of negotiation. You need to keep in mind though that the real estate agent that represents you can only do so much when it comes to negotiations. The best ones provide you with important data on legalities, market trends, and other aspects relevant to the deal but most of the time, your decision is what matters. Your behavior and efforts from the first offer up until closing on escrow hugely matter when buying a property.
Proper Timing
Buying a new home is not a competition. If you try observing real estate agents, they often keep a “likeable” and approachable behavior. The good and experienced ones are often easy to get along with, adept in providing you the right information at the right time, and are easy to talk to. When negotiating to buy a house, mimic how realtors behave. Be nice and careful without being too finicky. Taking an aggressive posture when negotiating will lead you to nowhere. Rather maintain your composure and likeability when releasing every piece of information just at the right time. This will not only earn the respect and trust of the seller or realtor you will be talking to but also gives more competitive advantage on your position in the midst of the transaction.
Appropriate Valuation
Buyers are always aiming to acquire a house or property at the least price possible. However, when you go on a preliminary offer, it is imperative that you are aware of the current housing market in the particular locality where you plan to buy a home. Here, the knowledge and expertise of your real estate agent can be of great help. Keep in mind that you would not want to risk insulting a seller’s asking price by offering too low. This will only make the seller evade further negotiations. A real estate agent’s advice on proper valuation of property would come handy. Negotiation built upon verifiable data usually works big time.
Home Inspection
To give you leverage, a certified home inspection must be done even if preliminary offer has already been set with the seller. Unless it’s brand new, there will always be some repairs needed to be done. These repairs or renovations usually mean price reduction.
Continuing Effort
Negotiations when buying a home is not the usual touch-and-go process. An artful way of handling negotiation is by being consistent in your efforts all throughout the deal. A buyer’s continuing effort from offer submission to counteroffer and then to closing of escrow can spell S-U-C-C-E-S-S to your initiative. It is important to always be consistent and focused, never forgetting every action or decision done during the whole process. Be reminded of proper timing during positioning offers and counteroffers while remembering to never get into uncompromising situation or concession without gain.

Negotiating is as common as breathing in real estate. From the start of the transaction to closing, negotiations come in handy on both buyers and sellers. To sellers, the aim is to obtain the most money for their property. To buyers, it is to snag the best property by obtaining the best value out of their hard-earned money. Indeed, negotiations when buying real estate take time, efforts, patience, perseverance, the right timing, and the right attitude—and a reliable real estate agent whose advice is worth in gold.

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Today’s real estate market is continually meandering towards recovery amidst a slower-than-normal pace and an ongoing world economic distress. With almost six years of excruciating struggle, this sounds like a good deal for buyers-and-sellers, and realtors in the market. But what are the current emerging trends in the real estate market nowadays?  To give you a closer perspective, here are some top trends most investors, realtors and independent home buyers and sellers have observed.
Low Mortgage Rates
As the economy slowly perks up, it is understandable for the fixed 30-year mortgage rate to nosedive. This could mean an impending increase anytime soon. But contrary to previous prediction, this will not skyrocket abruptly. The Federal Reserve is wise enough to keep it low for at least the whole year to help hasten recovery in the housing market. As it scale back its stimulus program, expect rates to gradually rise but, as a rule, never at an abrupt pace. For buyers, this could mean that now is a great time to buy your dream home.
Dynamic Bidding Wars
With the purported recovery, bidding wars have become even more dynamic and forceful in various places like Southern California, Seattle, Boston, New York and Washington. This has, however, shown a decline in other states like Pennsylvania, Maryland and Baltimore. But with the ever fluctuating norm of the real estate market and the economy as a whole, dynamism of bidding wars has great rely on present locale situation.
Flexible Tenure and Adaptability
Before the economic upheavals, buyers are expected to stay in their purchased homes for a certain amount of time. Current trend, however, has shown that almost half of home buyers do not have clear expectations on their tenure in a particular property. As economy continually shifts, so does the mentality of a home buyer. With this, sellers must ensure to market their homes according to what a buyer needs taking into consideration a buyer’s future needs. You might want to promote flexible space characteristics like a convertible garage or basement.
Increase Demand from Married Couples
The current driving force in home buying lies on the hands of married couples who are not necessarily first-time buyers. This could be affected by the sudden shift in the economy and employment market. For sellers, staging a property that appeals to couples will definitely increase its appeal.
A Steady Influx of Renters
Unlike couples, the growing number of yuppies escaping their parent’s overcrowded basements and extended garage pave the way for the rise of demand on rental properties. As young people start moving back into the employment market brought by an improving economy, moving out of the family homes has become a norm steadily giving rise to a lucrative rental business. For sellers who are uncertain on their decision, renting out their property can be a good opportunity.
Rise of City High Rise Living
Whether the real estate market dip low or jumps up, the demand for high rise living like condominiums continually climbs at a steady pace as cities are becoming more compacted. The problem in space and more employment pouring in to these niche locations pave the way for accelerating demands and prices in condominiums. For sellers this could be a great time to invest as it can both capture both renter and buyer markets.
Consistent Rise of Digital Marketing
Of course, reliance on online trend persistently continues as the top search engine for both buyers and sellers. Digital data has become the most important resources of information. This also posed a good opportunity for realtors and private sellers as online marketing is much cheaper and wider in scope.
Let these real estate marketing trends give you a heads-up on where to put your investment. Finding which markets or sectors offer the best incentive to your hard-earned money can be quite challenging. With steadfast expectation and a competent realtor handy, home buyers and sellers can productively manage sudden shift on these trends to their advantage.
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Amidst the recovering real estate market, it can be observed that the usual word-of-mouth tactics employed by private homeowners is not helping. If it does, this usually leads to a decrease on your price tag. If you want to sell your home in a fast and efficient manner with the price you desire, listing it with a competent realtor will definitely do you good. These people are seasoned professionals when it comes to selling houses. They do more than just show properties or negotiate offers to help close a sale. Below are some things that these realtors do to make your house more sellable.

Help Improve Your Home’s Stature 

Competent realtors do not just list your house, match it with a potential home buyer and be done with it. Often, these people ensure that your home is ready for that open house event or for buyer viewing by making use of their connections in the field of home improvements. They can assist you in improving the curb appeal of your home by contacting their contacts in plumbing, roofing, fencing, painting, landscaping and so on. Keep in mind that buyers are mostly concerned of a home’s interior and exterior appearance. A fresh coat of paint, a clean roof and exterior walls, updated plumbing system, and so on will help augment the appeal and face value of your home. With their connections, they can help find you general contractors which can perform all the needed improvements at a much affordable rate to suit your budget.

Experts in Pricing Your Home Right

An important aspect in selling a home is in pricing it right. Realtors are experts in estimating the value of a certain property with their experience and skill-set. They are proficient and up-to-date with important considerations like target market, location, demand and supply, and the type of house. They are trained and experienced in property evaluation to demand appropriate pricing to ensure that your home gets every bit that it deserves.
They Help Sweeten the Deal

Another way to make home-selling more attractive to buyers is by offering perks. Credible realtors know precisely how to play around the selling price or add-in any other special deals that will help make the buyer realize the added advantage on this particular investment. Some realtors are also connected with service contractors and home insurance agents. They can use those connections to offer an extra mile in their services as leverage in letting the buyer perceive the deal as an “added value” service. Some also offer transferable home warranty (with the consent of the homeowner) for at least a year. This helps cover maintenance and warranty on appliances and other home fixtures—and this helps sweeten the whole deal. 

Help Gain Home Buyers Trust

Do take note that 90% of all real estate transactions occur with the assistance of realtors. This could be due to the reason that these professionals have an ethical obligation to disclose hidden or latent shortcomings or defects in a home. Buyers want an honest-to-goodness deal and you as a seller might be perceived being biased when asked for details on your home.

The Bottom Line

Selling a home can take extra work and knowledge. You may put all your efforts in getting your home in excellent shape but when you have no knowledge on marketing it or knowledge on the present condition of the real estate market, you will most likely find yourself empty-handed. With competent realtors, you can effectively increase the odds of getting your home sold on the market.

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Rock Realty Client Testimonials

"Mike Collins was easy to talk to and very good at explaining in detail all aspects of the short sale of the property. With a lot of patience, he walked me through the process of a short sale. He was understanding of my plight and very sympathetic.

Mike was a pleasure to work with and he is a man of his word.
Thank you, Mike, and best of luck to you."

Tom D. (Oxford, WI)
Rock Realty Seller Client

Rock Realty Client Testimonials

Thanks for the compliments, and Congratulations on your closing Tom!

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Buying again After a Short Sale

Rock Realty Client Testimonials

"Approx 4 years ago.. I was having some financial strain. I wasn't able to keep up with a first and second mortgage alone as a single mom.

Through friends and family, I was introduced to Mike and Matt.

I didn't want to have to go through the foreclosure process, because I knew that I would be able to pull through the mess I was in within a few years and I didn't want to have that looming over me.

Matt and Mike were able to take over and help me with a short sale. They worked with me directly. They both came to my home, sat down, helped me understand this delicate process (which remains total Greek to me), and they were extremely efficient. My bank worked with me and these gentlemen, and withing approx 3 months, my home was sold in a short sale.

I remain amazed at their abilities and their continued efforts to help me.

Now, 3 years later, I'm looking to purchase... I have looked them up again... and they are helping me find a home that I'm looking for within my specifications and they also have resources to assist with lending.

Couldn't ask for more!!

Thanks so much my friends!! you do an awesome job... Keep up the great work!"

Kari B.(Cross Plains, WI)
Rock Realty Seller & Buyer Client

Rock Realty Client Testimonials

Thanks for the kind words Kari! We look forward to finding you the home perfect for you!

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Putting Aside Your Emotions When Selling a Home

Because of the large investment needed to purchase a home, sellers often find themselves in a difficult situation.  This inanimate object that they have owned for years and used to develop many memories will suddenly belong to someone else.  This can be a difficult time emotionally for many people.  Here are some ways in which the seller can set aside emotions when selling a home.

Selling Your HomeValues vs. Sentiment

Everyone that tries to sell a home has the same goal in mind; to get the most that the market will bear.  However, this is a difference between asking someone to pay a fair price for a feature of the home as opposed to asking someone to pay a premium for something that is only valuable to you.  The unique door handles, exquisite bathroom fixtures or one-of-a-kind chandelier may hold great meaning for you, but they may simply be accessories to someone else.

Vacate the Home during Showings

When your real estate agent notifies you that they will be showing the home to a proposed buyer, it is best to leave the home for a little while.  Someone that has never seen your home will have a much different opinion on things like the condition of the carpet, placement of furniture and the colors of the home.  Rather than risk hurt feelings or irritation from a buyer nit-picking over small details it is best if you are not there when the buyers arrive.

Give the Real Estate Agent Room and Freedom to Work

The job of your real estate agent can be summed it in one sentence.  They are on a mission to find the one person/family that is serious about purchasing your home.  While your home may be viewed by multiple parties, it only takes one to offer a contract and close the deal.  Give the Realtor® some flexibility in handling offers and let them come to you with news, instead of going to them after every showing and phone call.

Consider the Transaction as Strictly Business

Once a seller has realized that selling their home is merely a financial transaction in the eyes of the buyer the whole process will move along much smoother.  Sellers should not react to comments about the decor or the curb appeal as a personal affront.  The buyer is simply trying to find a way to get the price lower.  This points to a good sign.  If the buyer is trying to negotiate then it means they are interested in buying the home.  The next step is coming to a mutually agreeable price.  Once again, sellers should not take a counter offer as an insult.  Instead, consider the price based on advice from the real estate agent.  Holding out for a higher offer is not always the best tactic.

For many people there is no way to get around the fact that their home has been a cherished possession for a considerable time.  However, detaching one’s self away from the physical building emotionally will help make the transition easier to handle.

Original Post - Ways to Put Aside Your Emotions When Selling a Home

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The question of whether to short sell a home in probate used to be rare, but now unfortunately it is not. There are estates where the owner dies, owes more than the house is worth, and a decision needs to be made by the Personal Representative (executor) as to what to do.

My opinion, try it. If it is in the best interest of the bank/investor to short sell rather than foreclose they will do it. If it is not, they won't and will take it to foreclosure.

So who benefits if the home is sold as a short sale?  Well the realtor for sure.  The commission is paid by the bank.

However, if the attorney's fees are put on the HUD1 statement (the statement saying who is paying for what and who is receiving what money) the bank may pay them.  Also, the payment to the personal representative can go on the HUD1. This would make it worthwhile for the Personal Representative to try and do the short sale.  This can be very handy if the representative is a Bank or Professional Fiduciary.

The heirs do not get anything out of a short sale so it does not matter to them if the property is foreclosed or sold short, but it does matter to the neighborhood.  A vacant foreclosed home brings the other homes around it down, while a short sale is cared for by the realtor and even if vacant is not abandoned.

So should you bother?

I think so.

If you have any questions about probate or short sales, please feel free to contact me.

Marcy Moyer

Keller Williams Realty


D.R.E.  01191194

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As an REO broker how can I be more Realtor Friendly?

The REO broker does indeed experience a lot of pressure from the asset managers & companies. It seems that new REO assignments come at times in 'herds' with short-tough deadlines. Yup...been there, done that. So why would I consider taking the time to be 'Realtor Friendly'?

From my self-interest & perspective, being Realtor Friendly saves me time. The most important time I have is the DOM time. My REO listings seem to get shown & promoted first by selling brokers. They have experienced a cooperative list agent, full compensation regardless of list agent referral fees, and most importantly (to me anyway) a 'no war' transaction, which can be exhausting. I believe that being Realtor Friendly negotiates my seller client right-in-to a fast closing! Happy days are here again!

Yes, some selling brokers are hard to work with and need more time than others. Yes, this is a true experience of mine as I'm sure it has been with everyone out there. What I know to be true is that we are dealing with people. Realizing after 10 dedicated years of trying to teach my cat to bark, I no longer argue with the reality that cats don't bark, don't want to bark and cats are happy with a meow. I gave up arguing with the reality that all selling agents (people) should be equally competent, follow directions and have no need of my communication. It is simply NOT the way of it....and never will be.

Being Realtor Friendly is actually quite easy to do. It starts with the understanding that selling agents are a vital part of the transaction equation. They are the finishing 1/2 of the deal. They influence YOUR reputation with your asset manager. If a buyer's agent learns of issues regarding the transaction, they are more likely to keep you informed so you can pass the info on. In my experience, asset managers like and tend to favor a 'no surprise' REO broker. Realtor Friendly means having all of the needed docs and information uploaded on the MLS along with good pictures. Perhaps in the public remarks put "Check this one out with your favorite Realtor!" and in agent remarks might add, " Realtor" friendly listing agent. Questions? Call! Closings are more fun than listings! Do you agree? Let's close this one soon". The open receptiveness coupled with down-home people respect is ultimately your asset managers BEST FRIEND.

Selling agents don't seem to mind or be upset that my genuine motivation is powered by my own self-interest. Short & fast DOMs without struggle seems to earn me more money, which I tend to like.

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Nothing irks my soul more than the Realtor who questions my integrity. Yes, it can be argued that our industry is faced with many challenges, of which, personal integrity could be considered at the top however, I am not the one. My integrity and reputation precedes me and of this I am much aware. I pride fully admit I have never been good at humility but, we each have our drawbacks. As I was saying, I am not the one. I got out of my way to ensure everything is on the up and up, not because I am bound by some generic code of ethics or some legal statue but because, that is how I was raised. (cliché I know) So, when I sent out multiple offer notices to all the Selling Agents on a recent property, I was a bit miffed by the oblivious yet gallant response by one Realtor that went something like, “I don’t believe you have multiple offers.” Well, in this situation I could have responded many different ways however, reverting back to those wonderful lessons I learned as a child, of which my mothers favorite came to mind, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all”. With that in mind, I simply stayed quiet………..(Long Pause) and, then the Selling Agent said, “are you there?” My reply was yes, I am here, I have been here listening to you. I guess he was shocked that I was listening but, I am sure that is the by-product of most likely never being listened to because he obviously never has anything worth while to say but, that is another story for another time. I proceeded to end the conversation by saying, “did you have any other questions I can help with?” I was hoping he would say no and hang up but, I wasn’t that lucky. None the less, the conversation did come to an end, almost just as dramatic as it started. I repeated myself 5 times….I know, 5 times seems a lot but, for some people, that is just the start. For 5 times I said, “I am providing you the opportunity to instruct your client that multiple offers are on the table and they should submit in their final and best offer.” Eventually, the Selling Agent hung up and, I moved on to my next call. I don’t know how this is going to end but, I assure you, as always, I will be a gentleman and scholar……until he pisses me off.
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