Category Archives: Buying a Home

Deal with a Home that’s Not Move-In Ready

lkjAfter months—and possibly even years—of planning, searching, and organizing, you’ve finally done it—you’ve signed the paperwork and left with the keys to your new home; however, unless your purchase is totally move-in ready, you’re just getting started.

If you’ve decided to close on a house that could use a little bit of TLC, it’s important to understand the amount of money and effort it will take to make your home something you are truly happy with.  At the very least, a little paint will help spruce things up; however, in all reality, if there’s updating to be done, it may take more than a new color scheme.

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How to Navigate a Multiple-Offer Situation

shutterstock_142213210-ae5bd4There’s nothing like the feeling you get when, after touring what seems like—or might actually be—dozens and dozens of houses, you finally find the one.  The minute you enter, you can see your life playing out within its walls and try as you might, you cannot squelch the array of possible paint colors floating through your head.  It has to be yours.  You’re certain it will be…

…until you discover that nine other bidders are waiting in line.

How did that happen?  You’re angry and anxious, especially since you know that you’re attempting to buy in a seller’s market.  After the housing collapse several years ago, it might seem strange to see buyers without the upper hand; however, with less inventory currently on the market, it’s not unusual for sellers to receive upwards of 15-20 offers on a home.

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Tips for Purchasing a Luxury Home

khIf you’ve worked hard for years in an effort to accrue a certain income level, at some point, you’re likely to want to invest your hard-earned money into a home that you and your family can truly enjoy.  Whether it’s a modern high-rise condo or a sprawling golf course estate, there are a few items that should be considered before purchasing a luxury home.

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Top Questions to Ask Your Realtor

Couple meeting with financial advisor.Oftentimes, a home-selling strategy is only as good as the Realtor working to develop it; however, it’s not uncommon to find sellers who have gotten so lost in the process of cleaning, painting, and prepping their home that they forget to ask some of the most important questions.

While your overall strategy and list price may vary depending upon the season and other variables indicative of the current real estate climate, as you get closer to finalizing your listing, it’s important to ask your agent the following questions.

What is the most I can ask for my home based upon the current market? 

Location obviously plays a huge role in how much you can ask for your home, especially since it’s clearly something that cannot be changed.  With that, unless you plan on undergoing a full-scale remodel before you list, chances are good that your number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and square footage will remain relatively static.  With that being said, it’s important to make a point to discuss a proper listing price with your Realtor and to trust that, given the current market, they will do what’s best.

Based upon the current market and my asking price, when can I expect to field a serious offer?

Clearly, your Realtor cannot see the future, but it’s worth asking for their opinion on how long they think you’ll have to wait for a buyer.  If you’re looking to list your home at the top end of your asking range, you may have to wait longer, so it’s good to understand this dynamic in advance.

What is your strategy regarding open houses?

Just like all markets are different, all Realtors are different, as well.  While some agents refrain from staging open houses in favor of viewings, others feel that open houses are a great way to get your home seen by a lot of potential buyers.

Before assuming that your buyer will conduct business in a certain way, make a point to ask them how they develop their strategy and why they choose to do it that way.

In the end, as with most things in life, communication is key.  If you have questions, it’s important to speak up!  The Realtor/client relationship is just that—a relationship—and most of us understand that healthy, successful relationships are dependent upon open and honest dialogue.

A Realtor’s job is to serve the client, so it’s important to make sure that the handling of your home is done in a way that aligns with your interests.  If you’d like to learn more or would simply like a bit of advice, I’m always available to help.

Marie Dinsmore | The Dinsmore Team | www.DinsmoreTeam.com | 770-712-7789

Smart Ways to Reduce Expenses After Purchasing a Home

o-OLDER-WOMAN-TALKING-ON-PHONE-facebookWhen it comes to purchasing a home, while you may have been vigilant about budgeting in an effort to make sure that your new property would be affordable on a long-term basis, it’s no secret that the actual act of moving can cost a bit of money.  From movers to interior adjustments such as window treatments and paint, your wallet may take a hit for a few months.  However, while reducing your expenses in the beginning is important, there’s something to be said for fresh starts and cutting costs for an extended period of time.

Therefore, if you’re looking to start fresh with your move, consider the following tips to save money over the long-run.

AVOID THE LANDLINE: Sure, there is some benefit to installing a landline in your home; however, if you currently have one, when was the last time you really used it?  The number of people who are connected to landlines has rapidly fallen over the last few years, which makes sense since most of us have very little need or desire to pay for two phone lines.  Chances are pretty good that your cell phone lives within a 10-foot radius from you at all times, so skip the landline and spare yourself the expense.

SWITCH LIGHT BULBS: While incandescent lightbulbs may appear to be the cheaper option at the checkout, it’s important to realize that CFL or LED lightbulbs are up to four-times as energy efficient, turning a total home switch into a real money saver.

CONSIDER A PROGRAMMABLE THERMOSTAT: Most new homes are going come with thermostats that allow you to determine the automatic heating and cooling of your home for all hours of the day, which is great news if you work long hours.  If you find yourself purchasing a home that does not have this option, it may be worth your money.  Plain and simple, if you can turn your thermostat down by 10 degrees while you’re at work for eight hours, you can save anywhere from 5 to 15% on your heating bill—and the same goes for your air conditioning bill in the summer.

UNPLUG UNUSED DEVICES: While you may think you’re saving money by keeping unused devices turned off, the reality is that—whether on or off—if those devices are plugged in, they are still using electricity.  While the amount of electricity actually used is relatively small, when you multiply it by the number of plugged, but turned off, appliances in your home, it adds up.

Clearly, it’s not practical to unplug everything in your home when it’s not being used; however, you may want to consider keeping lesser-used items like the blender or pencil sharpener off the grid.

EAT IN YOUR NEW KITCHEN: While this may sound a bit silly, a large number of people find themselves eating out more than making food at home, which can place unnecessary strain on the wallet.  Even if you’re not much of a chef, what’s the point of having a beautiful, new kitchen if you don’t use it?  Bring a bit of savings into your life by skipping the takeout and packing a lunch or making dinner in the evening.  Aside from being healthier, your bottom line will thank you.

BUNDLE YOUR INSURANCE: If you’ve ever shopped for car insurance, you’ve probably been peppered with options about purchasing homeowners or renters insurance during the process.  While irritating if you’re not in the market for other services, as a new homeowner, bundling your policies can actually be a great thing.  Many insurance companies offer a sizeable discount if you combine your homeowner’s policy with your auto insurance policies, so if you’re currently using separate companies, you may want to look into making a switch.

For other tips, tricks, and ideas for saving money before, during, or after your move, feel free to contact me.  I’d love to hear from you.

Marie Dinsmore | The Dinsmore Team | www.DinsmoreTeam.com | 770-712-7789

Community Resources

WELCOME

2017 Welcome Services

The Dinsmore Team has created this handy guide for both Buyers and Sellers. The guide lists trusted service providers that we use personally and professionally. The providers listed service the Forsyth and North Fulton County areas.

2014 Complete Guide to Moving

This 20-Page Guide will be your comprehensive source for selling your home and planning your move. It includes tips for getting ready to sell, planning your move, packing and transitioning into your new home.

2014 Home Owners Tip Guide

This 20-Page Guide will help you develop an annual maintenance schedule for your home's systems and appliances to help you avoid bigger problems by taking care of them while they are small. It's also a great resource for trouble shooting malfunctions on your own, saving you time and money.


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Marie@DinsmoreTeam.com

770-712-7789