BOB UPTON, Realtor®, CBR's Blog
A small town home initially may have proven to be ideal. But if your current small town house fails to meet your needs, there is no need to worry. In fact, you can add your small town residence to the local housing market and relocate to a new city or town at your convenience.
Ultimately, there are many reasons why now may be the right time to sell your small town house. These include:
1. Your small town home no longer suits your present lifestyle.
If your small town home has become too big or too small for you, it may be beneficial to list your residence. That way, you can sell your current small town home and upgrade or downgrade as needed.
Before you list a small town residence, it generally is a good idea to study the local housing market. If you allocate time and resources to analyze housing market data, you can identify home selling patterns and trends. Then, you can use this information to establish a competitive initial asking price for your small town home – something that may help you accelerate the property selling journey.
2. Your small town home is far away from family members and friends.
If you find that you have to commute several hours to visit family members and friends, it is important to remember that you can always move closer to these loved ones. By selling your small town home, you can relocate near family members and friends any time you choose.
For those who want to sell a small town home and move close to family members and friends, it helps to plan accordingly. You should craft a strategy to sell your current residence as well as determine where you are going to live going forward. This will allow you to map out any home selling and homebuying plans and take the necessary steps to put your plans into action.
3. Your small town home fails to provide convenient access to attractions and landmarks.
If you enjoy lots of big-name attractions and landmarks, small town living may not be the right choice. Fortunately, city residences are available that provide quick, easy access to many entertainment options. And if you sell your small town home, you can pursue a city house that delivers convenient access to your preferred attractions and landmarks.
As you get set to sell your small town home, you may want to employ a real estate agent too. This housing market professional will learn about you and your house selling goals and craft a custom home selling strategy for you. Plus, a real estate agent will promote your small town home to prospective buyers, set up property showings and do everything possible to ensure you can maximize your home sale earnings.
Remove the guesswork commonly associated with listing a small town home. Hire a real estate agent, and you can receive in-depth assistance as you sell your small town residence.
The homebuying journey may prove to be long and complex, particularly for an individual who fails to plan ahead. Fortunately, there are lots of things that you can do to get ready to pursue your dream house, such as:
1. Make a Homebuying Budget
A homebuying budget will give you a good idea about how much money you have at your disposal to find your ideal residence. Thus, if you craft a homebuying budget, you can hone your house search to residences that fall within your price range.
As you craft a homebuying budget, you should consider both your house mortgage and closing costs. That way, you can prepare for myriad costs that you may encounter as you try to acquire your dream house.
You also may want to meet with various banks and credit unions. These financial institutions can help you budget for a home purchase. Perhaps best of all, they can help you get pre-approved for a mortgage.
2. Narrow Your Home Search
You know you want to purchase a house, but it usually is beneficial to understand what you want to find in your dream residence. If you put together a list of home must-haves and wants, you can narrow your house search accordingly.
Consider your short- and long-term aspirations prior to launching a home search. For instance, if you need a home that is close to your office in the city, you may want to check out residences in or near the city itself. On the other hand, if you aspire to own a residence that includes a state-of-the-art heating and cooling system, you should explore homes that offer this feature.
3. Hire a Real Estate Agent
A real estate agent is a must-hire, especially for an individual who wants to seamlessly navigate the homebuying journey. Because if you have a real estate agent at your side, you can take the guesswork out of finding and purchasing your dream residence.
Typically, a real estate agent learns about a buyer's goals and crafts a personalized homebuying strategy based on his or her aspirations. If you want to purchase a budget-friendly house as quickly as possible, for instance, a real estate agent will help you accomplish your goal. Conversely, if you are operating on a tight homebuying budget, a real estate agent will do everything possible to help you find a first-rate house that won't put you in the red.
Let's not forget about the homebuying expertise that a real estate agent possesses, either. A real estate agent understands all aspects of the homebuying journey and will share his or her industry insights with you. Therefore, if you ever have concerns or questions during the homebuying journey, a real estate agent will respond to them at your request.
Those who understand what to expect during the homebuying journey can boost the likelihood of finding a terrific house at an affordable price. Thanks to the aforementioned tips, you could reap the benefits of a successful home search.
If you're hoping to make some major changes to your home, you're likely interested in the types (and terms) of financing available to you. The 203k loan was designed to give homeowners an attractive interest rate, so they'd be more likely to upgrade and modernize their homes. However, it's not available to everyone. Find out more about how the loan works and who qualifies.
A 203k loan is granted by the FHA, though it's not the same as an FHA loan. You can apply for this loan at the time of purchase or after you've already owned the home for a while. Typically, these loans are granted to people who want to transform properties that have seen better days. So if you're buying a major fixer-upper in an abandoned part of town, you're more likely to qualify. Just as with any lender, you'll want to approach several before finding one for you.
The interest rate that each homeowner qualifies for will depend on everything from the going rates to the homeowner's credit score. However, it tends to be around 1% more than a conventional home loan. A regular FHA loan has a minimum credit score of 580 but 203k loans typically require at least 640. You'll also need 3.5% of the total cost of the loan in order to qualify. (So if the repairs cost $10,000, you'll need at least $350 to get started.)
How Repairs Work
These loans are only given to primary homeowners, as opposed to second, vacation or flipped homes, and you're typically not allowed to do the repairs yourself. These loans require you to have serious work completed by an approved contractor, despite the individual zoning laws of your neighborhood. Owners must include an itemized list of upgrades to lenders before being approved. If you aren't able to live on the property during the time of repairs, you can borrow up to six months of mortgage payments to counter the financial burden.
Types of Loans
You can either take out a streamline or standard loan. A streamlined loan is typically for those who need to make less than $350,000 in repairs, while a standard has no monetary limits. You can use a standard loan to essentially build an entire property, it only requires a small part of the foundation to exist before qualifying. As you might imagine, standard loans require a more intensive underwriting process.
The 203k loan can be a great way for homeowners to get the home they want and take a big step toward revitalizing a neighborhood. And while not everyone qualifies, the terms of the loan are typically far more reasonable than conventional lenders.
Putting your house on the market is a lot like preparing to host a holiday party; you want to make the best possible impression on people without having to spend a small fortune in the process!
Assuming your home is not drastically outdated or in disrepair, there are a lot of simple things you can do to make it more appealing to visitors.
For a lot of reasons, the kitchen is one of the most important rooms of the house. The impression your kitchen makes on potential buyers can easily make or break your chances for a quick sale. Although everyone's looking for different features in a home, it will always be to your advantage to spend a little extra time sprucing up your kitchen.
While it may not be practical or affordable to give your kitchen a complete makeover, here are a few simple ideas for enhancing its overall appeal.
Lighting affects perception: As a home seller, one of your primary objectives is to create an environment that's comfortable, attractive, and relaxing. Lighting, both natural and artificial, can play a big role in how people perceive your home. If you're fortunate enough to have sunny weather on days when your house is being shown, it will be easier to present your kitchen and other rooms to their best advantage. By letting in a lot of natural sunlight, colors tend to be more vibrant and your home's mood will be a lot more positive. Turning on electrical lights can also help give your living space a more cheerful feeling.
Cleanliness is crucial: Although the "grunge factor" is something you want to avoid anywhere in your house, prospective buyers will pay special attention to the cleanliness of your kitchen and bathrooms. Thoroughly cleaning counter tops, floors, sinks, and appliances will go a long way toward making a positive impression. If you can use cleansers that have a mild, natural-smelling fragrance -- like citrus, for example -- then you won't risk turning people off with the overpowering smell of harsh chemicals or artificial scents.
Staging your kitchen: A few things you can do to make your kitchen look more inviting and memorable include adding touches like a vase of fresh flowers, a bowl of colorful fruit, and a green plant or two. Removing distracting clutter from counter tops, tables, and desks can also help give your kitchen a more organized, tidy, and spacious appearance.
If your refrigerator door is covered with outdated children's drawings, coupons, photographs, and other miscellaneous memorabilia, it might be worth your time to weed that out a little bit! Not only does it detract from the beauty of your kitchen, but it also makes it impossible to clean the door of your fridge. Another tip to keep in mind is that too many personal items on display make it more difficult for prospects to visualize living in your home -- which is the first step to winning them over as buyers.
You may be surprised to learn just how much a little DIY storage bench in your entryway can save you in time and money. Storage benches offer children a place to sit while they remove snowy or muddy shoes. That's less time spent mopping your kitchen or steam-cleaning the carpets.
Save hardwoods from years of damage and wear.
On top of that, a bench can double as storage. Never again will you be racing around your home trying to find your mittens, scarves, rain boots and other outdoor essentials on your way out the door. It's now all in one convenient place.
You can even store backpacks and lunch bags on the weekend -- whatever makes sense for your family.
You might think that making an entryway storage bench is complicated. But we'll show you the easy way to build your bench in less than a day.
What you'll need
*Pro tip* Borrow tools that you may never use again before buying. If you find you want to take on more new projects, you can buy one then.
How to build a DIY storage bench for your entryway
Here's your guide.
Gather materials & supplies
The amount of material varies by the bench size you choose the make. Be sure to measure twice and cut once so that everything fits perfectly.
Frame your bench
Your frame becomes your guide for the project. Cut your 2X4's the desired length of the bench. Then cut more for the height. Find the studs. And use that hammer drill to attach the 2X4s to the back wall. Build out from there.
Construct the front and sides
Now build around your frame, using your plywood. Be careful with any tools you use. Just take your time to get it right.
Add the hinges
Measure and drill for your hinges. Then simply screw them in.
Place the lid on the ground and drill holes for hinge screws. Then connect the top to the other side of the hinge with screws. You might need a partner hold the lid steady while you to screw in the lid.
Add your finish of choice
You can stop with a basic box. But while you're at it, it won't take much more effort to add some trim and paint it. Then place some hooks above for coats and backpacks.
And now, you have a beautiful DIY storage bench. For more helpful tips on home maintenance and improvement, follow our blog.