Call today for your free market analysis.
Coldwell Banker Tomlinson
Call today for your free market analysis.
Coldwell Banker Tomlinson
Jessica Riffle Edwards with Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage answers this age old question.
When is the right time to sell your home? Is it in the spring? Is it in the summer? Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage agent Jessica Riffle Edwards sheds a little light on this age old question. Watch the video below for her expert take on the subject.
If you or anyone you know is looking to buy or sell I would be happy to help them in anyway I can.
Judy Higgins, CRS
Certified Residential Specialist
208-750-5839 call or text
Coldwell Banker Tomlinson~ 325 Main St, Lewiston, ID 83501
~Licensed in Idaho and Washington
Unsure if you should rent or sell the home you are moving out of? Here are six factors that can lead you to a smart decision.
You’re moving away from your current home and you’re not sure whether you should sell your current home or hang onto the property as a rental. There are pros and cons to both approaches.
If you hold onto your home, you can enjoy residual rental income as well as any positive home value appreciation. You’ll also have the peace-of-mind that comes with knowing that you could move back, if circumstances allow.
If you sell your home, you may have cash from the sale that can help you purchase another home in your new location. You also won’t need to worry about renting and maintaining your former home.
It’s a tough decision and there’s no “right” or “wrong” answer. But don’t worry, we’ve come up with six critical questions you should ask yourself when you’re trying to decide whether to rent or sell your current home.
1. What Are the Current Market Conditions?
The National Association of Realtors (NAR) publishes national, regional and metro-market-level statistics about real estate forecasts. If your home is located in a major metropolitan area that’s covered by NAR data, you can view their current forecasts about your housing market conditions.
But remember, real estate trends are hyper-local, which means the data that applies to your overall state or metropolitan area may not necessarily apply to your neighborhood. For specific local information, talk to a real estate agent who specializes in your location.
Ask a real estate agent to conduct a comparative market analysis look at both the recent sales and recent rental history of your neighborhood. You can also check out home pricing reports to compare the value of homes in your area. Again, it’s important to talk to an agent who has experience with your specific neighborhood because the market trends may vary in different areas
2. What is the Long-Term Outlook for the Neighborhood?
Ask your agent if there are indicators that your neighborhood may have a positive outlook for the next several years.
If home prices are slated to rise, it could be beneficial to hold on to the property and allow time for appreciation. If you’re holding onto your former home, then you may want to rent it out so that you can cover mortgage, repair and maintenance costs during your holding period. If, however, values are on a decline, selling your home may be a better option for you.
Of course, nobody can predict the future. But looking at indicators like job growth, population growth and housing inventory can lead to a smarter decision.
3. Will You Have Trouble Finding a Buyer or Renter?
Every local housing market caters to different sets of people. If you want to be able to find a tenant or buyer, you need to understand who your housing market attracts.
If your neighborhood tends to attract first-time homebuyers, and you live in a high-priced luxury home, it’s possible that you may have better luck finding a renter. On the other hand, if your residence is a duplex and your neighborhood is popular with investors, you may have excellent luck selling your property.
Likewise, take a look at how popular your neighborhood is with renters. Ask a real estate agent to pull data about the percentage of homes in your area that are owner-occupied vs. renter-occupied.
In addition, ask the agent to tell you the average length of time that homes sit on the market before selling. This will give you an indication of the demand in your neighborhood.
4. What Are Your Monthly Holding Expenses?
Estimate the monthly rental income for your property. Subtract an estimate for expected vacancy rates as well as an estimate for property management fees. This is the gross revenue you can expect to collect from the property.
Vacancy rates vary depending on neighborhood. Talk to an agent to find the average vacancy rates in your area. You can also call a few property managers who service your area to inquire about rates. Expect to hear estimates around 10% of the gross rent monthly, plus one months’ rent as a placement fee for new residents.
Next, calculate your total monthly expenses for the property, including the mortgage payment (principal, interest, taxes and insurance), condo or homeowner’s association (HOA) fees if applicable, and an estimate for annual repair and maintenance costs. These are your holding costs for the property.
Not sure how to estimate these costs? As a broad rule-of-thumb, repairs and maintenance will cost about 1% of the property value, or $83 per month for every $100,000 worth of home. This is a long-term average that includes major capital expenditures like replacing the HVAC, water heater and roof.
Subtract your holding costs from your gross revenue (after deducting for vacancy and management). How much is left over?
This monthly total will play a big role in your decision to either rent or sell.
5. Do You Have an Emergency Fund?
You’ll need adequate funds to prepare for vacancies and major capital expenditures. Do you have an emergency fund to cover the mortgage payment for those months when the property may not be occupied? Can your cash reserves cover the cost of a major emergency repair, like a broken water heater?
If you don’t have the money to make your payments on time, then your credit score will suffer, and eventually, you could even face foreclosure. Make sure you have sufficient cash reserves before you start renting out your property.
6. Can You Buy Another Home Without Recouping the Down Payment?
Can you buy another home without selling your existing home? Or do you need to sell your current home in order to recoup the equity, so that you can make a down payment on your next home?
If any offer that you make on a future home will be contingent on the sale of your current home, then you may want to think about listing your existing home for sale.
On the other hand, if you can hold onto your current home and also buy another one, and the rental income on your current home – even after vacancies, repairs, maintenance and management – exceeds the holding costs, then there might be an argument for using your current home as a rental.
Whether you should rent or sell your current home is a difficult question to answer. But if you carefully examine the specifics of your neighborhood, home prices, rental demand, cash reserves, and financial abilities, you’ll be able to come up with a smart decision.
Being proactive when it comes to your home’s maintenance can save you time and money! Focus on maintaining these 5 areas.
With the bright sunlight and warm temperatures that accompany summer, you may be spending more time outside — and you may be noticing areas of your home’s exterior that need repair. But there’s more reason to tackle your home maintenance projects this summer than simply cosmetic appearance. Maintaining your home will prevent major leaks and damage that may eventually require professional help, usually when its most expensive and inconvenient for you.
Being proactive when it comes to your home’s maintenance can save you time and money, and it makes sense to do it when you’re more likely to be outdoors in the comfortable summer months. Here are five areas of your house that are most important to keep updated.
Start by cleaning the exterior of your windows with hot soapy water and a sponge or squeegee. If you’ll need a ladder, make sure to review safety guidelines.
While you’re washing, inspect each window pane for cracks. Double or triple glazed windows with damaged seals or cracks may need to be replaced. Think back: Have your windows had excessive condensation inside through the winter and spring? That’s another sign that the seal might have been compromised and that your window might need to be replaced.
You’ll also want to inspect caulking and weatherstripping around your windows. Recaulk any spots where the caulk is loose or chipping away, or consider applying new caulk for a tight seal. Summer is a perfect time to do this because the warm temperatures and low humidity will help the caulk set perfectly.
Finally, wash window screens and replace any screens that have rips or holes.
Visually inspect your roof every summer for missing or broken shingles, shakes and panels. Again, if you’ll be using a ladder and climbing up to your roof, make sure you follow safety guidelines. If you have any concerns about using a ladder or moving around on your roof, or if you’re unsteady on your feet, call your roofing company. Most roofers will make inspections and do basic maintenance for you.
While you’re up on your roof, you’ll also want to check flashing and seals around vents, chimneys and skylights. Apply caulk around any areas that haven’t been re-sealed in the past year.
Algae and moss can plague even new and well-maintained roofs. Apply a moss killer designed for roofs or install zinc strips that can help keep algae and moss from taking hold.
Your gutters should be cleaned and checked for holes or other damage. Look for water stains around your gutters and downspouts that indicate a problem.
Check high and low over your exterior and look for holes, gaps and cracks in your siding. It’s less expensive to replace siding that is just starting to deteriorate than to wait until it’s broken down completely and impacted your home’s structure, insulation and inside walls.
While you’re walking around your home, look for any signs of pests. Termites and carpenter ants can be devastating to your home’s structure, while ants and wasps can be a nuisance and cause minor damage to your home’s exterior. Check vents and crawl-space access doors to make sure rodents and other wildlife can’t get in.
Check your foundation for any cracks and signs that there has been a leak, such as water stains. Any small cracks can be repaired, but larger cracks should be inspected by a pro. Once you repair small cracks, re-seal the foundation with a good waterproof masonry sealer.
Pull out any larger plants growing close to your home that might impact the foundation. Besides the risks of roots growing into your foundation, watering plants close to your home can cause water to pool around the foundation and lead to damage.
You’re going to want to make sure your air conditioning is ready for the heat ahead, so replace filters and remove and clean your unit’s fan and condenser. Make sure you turn off power to the unit before you tackle any work.
At the same time, your furnace should be checked and readied for use again at summer’s end. Vacuum out the burner and blower cavities, and vacuum and brush the blower blades. Change the filter so the furnace is all ready to go when it’s time to turn it on again.
Your home is a big investment, and it’s important to keep it in good “health.” Spend some of your summer days inspecting and making minor repairs and you’ll reduce your chances of needing a big repair later.
Jul 3, 2017
Please visit the web site for event schedule!
Article by Roy Rasmussen
Effective online marketing has become essential for successful REALTORS®. Eighty-six percent of homebuyers see websites as a useful information source, making this the most popular resource for homebuyers, the latest National Association of Realtors® data shows. Forty-four percent of homebuyers look online before taking any other steps. Fifty-one percent of all buyers ultimately find the home they purchase on the internet. If you don’t have an effective online marketing strategy for showcasing your real estate clients’ properties, you’re potentially passing up at least half of your prospective buyers.
One way to improve your online sales strategy is by using virtual tours to showcase your clients’ properties to buyers who are shopping online. Virtual technology can also let you give tours of properties that are not physically accessible to buyers for reasons such as distance or scheduling. Here are some steps you can take to showcase your clients’ properties with a virtual open house.
Your virtual tour will create the best impression if you shoot some live footage in ultra-high definition using a smartphone with a 4K camera such as the iPhone 6s Plus. For an even greater sense of three-dimensional realism, you can attach accessories to your smartphone camera that provide a 360-degree view of your subject by using dual fisheye lenses.
For the most impressive footage, include some aerial shots by using a camera drone. Camera drones can be used to provide a dramatic aerial view of your property, including the garage and backyard, giving a fuller sense of what the property includes. You can also use drone views to provide an aerial view of the neighborhood and local highlights, such as nearby schools or parks.
Another way to use drones to heighten the sense of realism is to film a simulation of what it feels like to walk up to the property door. You can continue your drone tour indoors and walk your audience through the house. You can also use drone footage to take bird’s eye view of individual rooms and highlight features that might not be as evident from a ground’s eye view. This can be especially effective for properties that have high ceilings or stairway views overlooking lower floors.
For viewers with access to a virtual reality (VR) headset, you can further enhance the realism of your virtual tour by creating a virtual model of your client’s property. Companies such as Matterport and Floored create 3-D models of properties that can be combined with a VR headset to immerse the viewer in the environment of your client’s property. The headset allows the viewer to turn their head in sync with their virtual camera view, giving prospective buyers a realistic sense of what it’s like to walk through the rooms of a property and view their surroundings.
You can further enhance the impact of your virtual tour with augmented reality (AR), which combines your buyer’s view with on-screen overlays that provide information about what they’re looking at. For instance, when they look at an AR map of your property, they can see captions summarizing information and highlights of the surrounding neighborhood. When they look at a view of your property’s exterior, they can see it alongside a summary of the property’s features and price. When they look at interior features, they can see information about rooms or appliances, or about possible ways to take advantage of room features. You can even depict what a room would look like with furniture or family members in it.
To get the most leverage out of your virtual tour, use social media to promote it. RE/MAX One Group REALTOR® Jesse Peters turns his virtual tours into social events by broadcasting them through Facebook Live. During the event, Peters lets viewers submit questions through Facebook, and he provides answers in real time. This lets him reach a larger number of potential buyers at one time while giving buyers a convenient preview of the property he’s showing. It also allows him to promote himself as a real estate agent by demonstrating his ability to present properties.
You can also use your blog to help promote your tours. You can create blog posts in advance of your upcoming tours so you can share them with your social media followers and invite them to attend. You can also embed videos of your tours on your blog so viewers can see them at any times. Apps such as Realync make it easier to embed virtual tours on your blog.
By using social media to promote high-quality videos and virtual models of property listings, you can provide prospective buyers with a realistic sense of what it’s like to tour a property, even when they’re not physically present. This can be used to set the stage for a physical tour, or even to sell the home without an in-person tour. Use virtual tours to improve the effectiveness of your selling technique, increase the number of prospective buyers you’re able to reach online and boost the success of your real estate business.
If you need any assistance with buying or selling I am here for you.
This Saturday Coldwell Banker Tomlinson office located at 325 Main St in Lewiston is having a big open house day!!!! Come to our office betweeen 10-12:00 Saturday for a list of open houses for Saturday and Sunday. There will be a sign in at each house you visit where your name will be entered into a drawing for a computer tablet!!!! Live Radio will be on location Saturday!! It’s going to be lots of fun!!!
With vineyards dated back to 1872, the Lewis-Clark Valley AVA is home to 16 vineyards growing nearly 100 acres of grapes growing approximately 20 unique varietals.
The Lewis-Clark Valley Wine alliance is a great resource to learn about the history of wineries in the LC Valley. Click on the link to see what you will find when visiting the wineries of the Lewis-Clark Valley.. http://lewisclarkwine.com/
What an exciting time to be a resident of the valley! More tourism is great for our entire community, including our property values!
Buying a home comes with many questions. Find out what questions to ask your real estate agent at the beginning of your home search.
Since buying a house is an enormous investment, it’s best to know what questions to ask at the beginning of your home search. Acquiring information about the qualifications of your agent and the homebuying process can help protect you from unpleasant surprises and increase the likelihood of a positive outcome. Here are some essential inquiries to make:
Are You Experienced?
Question agents about their qualifications. Ask if they specialize in particular communities. Inquire about how many years of experience they have and their percentage of successful transactions.
Should I Rent or Buy?
It’s wise to purchase a home when your financial situation is sufficiently strong. Renting may be a better option if you lack the funds needed for a down payment, have debt, or a low credit score. Your agent can give you a buy-versus-rent analysis within your market.
What Are the Costs of Homeownership?
First-time homebuyers may not be aware that the costs of homeownership extend beyond the monthly payments on the principal and interest of the loan. Expenses also include taxes and insurance, as well as utilities and maintenance. The exact monetary outlay may be difficult to estimate, but your agent can give you a general idea of what to expect.
What Preparations Do I Need to Make Before I Can Write an Offer?
In certain areas, a property won’t stay on the market long, so you need to be prepared to act quickly when you come across your dream house. Give your agent a realistic price range of what fits your budget, and then he or she can help you navigate the process of getting the necessary cash in an account that is ready to use.
How Do I Learn More About the House and/or Neighborhood?
Before you sign the dotted line, you’ll want to know more about the neighborhood you may be moving to. Ask your agent to provide insight into the livability of a neighborhood. You should also ask your agent if the property is in close proximity to a major source of noise like a train station or busy freeway.
Has the Property Changed Ownership Often?
Finding out how long the present owner has lived in the house can help you figure out if there are long-term issues with the property or the surroundings.
May I Speak to the Sellers?
Having a direct conversation with the seller can be a great advantage because sometimes they will be candid about the reason they’re moving, and any aspects of the property. If possible, contact the former owner for another opportunity to discover more about the property.
When Was the House Last Updated?
With the intent of uncovering needed updates that could pose a major expense, ask when the house was last updated. Inquire specifically about the age of the roof, wiring, and appliances. See if the drainage system needs to be replaced.
What is the Minimum Offer the Seller Will Accept?
See if the seller is willing to negotiate on the lowest acceptable offer. Speak to your real estate agent to develop a sound plan for negotiation that will keep you in good standing with the seller.
How Long Has the Property Been on the Market?
Find out if the house has been languishing on the market for some time, or if the seller has received considerable interest from potential buyers. This knowledge will be of value in gauging if you have negotiating room when making an offer.
Can I Get the Home Inspected Before I Sign the Contract?
If you can get the home inspected before signing the contract, you aren’t obligated to buy if the property needs costly repairs. This downside is that it carries a risk that during the inspection, the seller could accept another offer before the inspection is finished. The solution is to have an inspection contingency in the contract that permits you to get out of the sale if the projected repairs exceed a certain limit.
When Can I Move In?
You’ll need to know this to schedule your moving plans. In most cases, you can move after escrow or closing, but an experienced agent can give you an accurate time frame.
Asking your agent questions is of utmost importance when buying a home. The answers can maximize your chances of buying a home that will offer you many years of enjoyment.
To learn more about the process of buying a home, contact me Judy Higgins at 208-750-5839
Article by Mar 31, 2017