Tag Archives: Home Buying North Atlanta

Top Tips for House Hunting Online

Hunting for a new home online is a great place to start your new home search, but it should not be your end all be all.  One of the services that I offer my clients is providing them with the most up to date current listings of the homes that meet their search criteria.  I have access to and can send the notice of a new listing within 15 minutes of it going on the market.  And some I even know about as ‘Coming Soon.’  I can also research the ones of interest prior to the showing to find out if it truly meets all the checkboxes before we schedule a showing for you.

Good listing agents are excellent at highlighting the best features of the home, but keep in mind there may be more than meets the eye. To make the most of your time and efforts and gather a well-rounded picture of home listings online, keep the following three things in mind.

  1. Stay up to date. When you start your search, make sure you find a site that pulls up-to-date listings directly from the multiple listing service (MLS) where real estate agents actively post their most current homes for sale. Many online resources update less often or fail to remove listings that are off the market, making it more difficult to sort through the clutter. The service I provide will provide the most up to date information.
  2. Pictures can be deceiving. Real estate photographers are experts at showing a home in the best possible light. Many use tools and strategies to boost appeal, such as a fisheye lens to make areas look larger and creative editing to make colors and textures really pop. But often listings will not contain photos of unappealing parts of the home, like small closets or outdated bathrooms. When you wonder why there are not certain photos of key points of the home, it’s usually because that’s what they don’t want you to see.  Some research on my part often uncovers that and eliminate wasted time of going for a showing.
  3. See it to believe it. Once you find what appears to be your dream home online, call me to schedule a showing. You want to take the opportunity to vet the home in person and explore every part of it before beginning the offer process. I will help you cover all your bases and will ask questions you may not have thought of.

Yes, inventory is low and the market is very competitive right now, but I can save you time, energy, and frustration by being your source for your new home search.  Provide me your wish list and I’ll set up for you to receive a notice when your dream home comes up for sale.

Marie Dinsmore

RE/MAX Around Atlanta

Experience, Passion, and Commitment to Excellence

Featured Neighborhood: Avalon in Alpharetta

0114AvalonEatStreet If you’re looking to live the high life without dealing with Atlanta’s gridlocked roads and expensive parking, then Avalon—Alpharetta’s newest mixed-use development—is sure to catch your eye.  Located on 86 acres of land at the intersection of GA 400 and Old Milton Parkway, this $600 million development is more than just the 101 single-family courtyard homes—it includes over 100 exclusive shops and restaurants.

A community designed around the old world charm of walkable cities, residents will be treated to a neighborhood filled with opportunities for alfresco dining, luxury shopping, and nightly entertainment, while also enjoying the privacy of personal courtyards and homes equipped with designer finishes.

3624385788Ranging in price from $600,000 to $2 million, these exquisite Monte Hewett homes come filled with an assortment of upscale touches, such as professional series appliances, open floor plans, oversized master’s suites, and stunning views.  Many of the homes come standard with three-car garages, while others boast custom libraries with grand 14-foot ceilings and multiple fireplaces.

RETAIL

Threads, Anthropologie, Arhaus, Athleta, Banana Republic, BCBG Max Azria, Boston Proper, C Wonder, Calypso, Columbia, Crate & Barrel, Dental Town, Destination Maternity, Dry Bar, Everything But Water, Exhale, Fab’rik, Fly Wheel, Francesca’s, Free People, Fuzzywigs Candy Factory, Gap, Gymboree, J. Crew, J. Jill, J. McLaughlin, Janie and Jack, Kendra Scott, Kinnucan’s Specialty Outfitter, L’Occitane, LensCrafters, Lou & Grey, Marmi Mitchell, Gold + Bob Williams, Note Worthy Paper, Orvis, Paper Source, PNC, Pooch ‘N’ Paws, Pottery Barn Kids, Regal Cinemas, Road Runner Sports, Sage, Soft Surroundings, Sunglass Hut, The Cosmetic Market, Tommy Bahama, Tumi, Van Michael Salon, Velina, Vineyard Vines, West Elm.

54296d710c9a2FOOD/DINING Whole Foods, Antico, Bantam + Biddy, Bantu, Bocado Burger, Caffe Gio, Cru, Goldberg’s Fine Goods, Kona Grill, Marlow’s Tavern, Oak Steakhouse, Pinkberry, Ted’s Montana Grill, The El Felix

SCHOOLS

Elementary – Manning Oaks

Middle – Hopewell

High – Alpharetta

If you have any questions or you would like the assistance of an experienced Realtor, please do not hesitate to contact me.

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

Can Living Near A Walmart Increase Your Home Value?

The answer is surprisingly, “yes”!   There was an interesting article on the National Association of Realtors‘ site that I thought I would share.

Marie Dinsmore, Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist

The Dinsmore Real Estate Team  |  www.dinsmoreteam.com

Marie@DinsmoreTeam.com | 770-712-7789

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9 Surprising Things That Add Value to Your House

By: Dona DeZube

A home’s value is dependent on many things. Here are nine factors you might not have thought about.

1. Surf Breaks: Being within a mile of a surf break (a spot where surf-able waves happen) adds about $106,000 to a home’s value, according to surfonomics experts at the Monterey Institute of International Studies.

Reality check: Mother Nature makes surf breaks, so it’s not like you could build your own DIY break to boost your home’s value.

2. Parks and Open Spaces:  A desirable public park or other recreational open space boosts the property value of nearby homes by 8%-20%.  One study looked at 16,400 home sales within 1,500 feet of 193 public parks in Portland, Ore., and found these boosts to home values:

  • Natural areas: $10,648
  • Golf courses: $8,849
  • Specialty parks: $5,657
  • Urban parks: $1,214

Reality check: A park that’s not maintained and overcrowded can drag down nearby home values.

3. Living Near a Walmart: Along with making it easier to run out for a gallon of milk at midnight, researchers at the University of Chicago concluded that living within a mile of a Walmart store could raise your home’s value by 1%-2%, and living within half a mile could boost your property value by an additional 1%.  For an average-size home, that’s an uptick of $4,000-$7,000.

Realty check: What you gain in home value, you may end up spending at Walmart.

4. Solar Photovoltaic Systems: California homes with solar photovoltaic (PV) systems sell for a $17,000 premium over homes without solar systems, according to research from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Reality check: Although costs for residential solar power systems are falling, they’re still rather pricey at $15,000-$40,000, depending on the size of your house.

5. Walkability: Being able to stroll to schools, parks, stores, and restaurants will raise your property value anywhere from $4,000-$34,000, says a 2009 study from CEOs for Cities.

Reality check: The biggest boost in walkability values occurred in large, dense cities.

6. Accessory Dwelling Units:  Whether it’s a granny flat, an in-law apartment, or a carriage house, having a separate unit can increase your home’s value by 25%-34%, according to a study of 14 properties with accessory dwelling units in Portland, Ore. You can also get a steady stream of income from a second unit.

Reality check: Local governments often ban accessory dwelling units, so check zoning laws, building codes, and homeowners association rules before you add a unit.

7. Professional Sports Arenas:  A new pro sports stadium can raise property values in a 2.5-mile radius by an average of $2,214. The closer you are to the new facility, the larger the increase in home value. Researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of Alberta examined house sales in Columbus, Ohio, before and after the city added two sports stadiums.

Reality check: If a stadium is proposed, home values can decline a bit until the project is complete. And if you live really close to a stadium, you may encounter traffic and parking issues.

8. Community Gardens:  Planting a community garden raises the value of homes within a 1,000-foot radius by 9.4% within five years, according to research by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and New York University School of Law.  The impact increases over time, and high-quality community gardens have the greatest positive influence. Poor neighborhoods saw the biggest gains in home values.

Reality check: Gardens on privately owned land and in higher-income neighborhoods don’t have the same beneficial influence.

9. Trees:  No real surprise here — whether trees are in your yard or just on your street, they’re a valuable asset you should be aware of. Here’s a gauge of how much trees are worth to your home value according to a University of Washington research survey:

  • Mature trees anywhere in your yard: 2%.
  • Mature trees on your street: 3%.
  • Trees in your front yard: 3%-5%.
  • Mature trees in high income neighborhoods: 10%-15%.

Reality check: Trees usually mean work — raking leaves, trimming branches, and keeping roots out of sewer lines.

Why Realtor Certification Matters: CDPE

I’ve been a Realtor along the GA400 corridor (covering Milton, Alpharetta, Cumming, Johns Creek, Suwanee and Dawsonville) since 2002, and have helped more than 300 families buy or sell a home in the area. My experience and knowledge of this market is extensive. With over 12 years’ experience in the Real Estate Industry, I realize the importance of being able to assist my clients with not only their buying and selling needs, but also to be able to help those in need during difficult financial times avoid foreclosure.

Through years of experience, I have developed what I believe is the most effective short sale listing system available: understanding what works; how banks think; and how to get banks to forgive outstanding debt associated with short sales.

In a previous blog, I explained the importance of having the CLHMS (Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist) certification.    This time, I would like to explain the CDPE certification.

CDPEA Certified Distressed Property Expert® (CDPE) has a thorough understanding of complex issues in today’s turbulent real estate industry and knowledge of foreclosure avoidance options available to homeowners. CDPEs can provide solutions, specifically short sales, for homeowners facing market hardships.

Homeowners regularly proceed without guidance of any kind through the often financially and emotionally devastating prospect of foreclosure. Speaking with a well-informed, licensed real estate professional is the best course of action for a homeowner in distress. Through comprehensive training and experience, CDPEs have the tools to help homeowners find the best solutions for their unique situations and to avoid foreclosure through the efficient execution of a short sale.

So what is a short sale?

A short sale can be an excellent solution for homeowners who need to sell, and who owe more on their homes than they are worth. In the past, it was rare for a bank or lender to accept a short sale. Today, however, due to overwhelming market changes, banks and lenders have become much more negotiable when it comes to these transactions. Recent changes in corporate policy and the Obama administration have also improved the chances of getting a short sale approved.

But to be technical, here’s a more official definition:

  • A homeowner is “short” when the amount owed on his/her property is higher than current market value.
  • A short sale occurs when a negotiation is entered into with the homeowner’s mortgage company (or companies) to accept less than the full balance of the loan at closing. A buyer closes on the property, and the property is then ‘sold short’ of the total value of the mortgage.

For homeowners to qualify for a short sale, they must fall into all of the following circumstances:

  • Financial Hardship – There is a situation causing you to have trouble affording your mortgage.
  • Monthly Income Shortfall – A lender will want to see that you cannot afford, or soon will not be able to afford your mortgage.
  • Insolvency – The lender will want to see that you do not have significant liquid assets that would allow you to pay down your mortgage.

This seems simple enough, but it is a complicated process that takes the expertise of an experienced professional. CDPEs don’t merely assist in selling properties, they serve and help save their clients in need.

While the market has shown definite improvement in the North Atlanta area, you or someone you know may still need advice on how best to avoid foreclosure during difficult financial times.   Please contact me if you have any questions regarding the short sale process.

Marie Dinsmore, Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist

The Dinsmore Real Estate Team  |  www.dinsmoreteam.com

Marie@DinsmoreTeam.com | 770-712-7789770-712-7789

Real Estate Agents Rank Biggest Home Seller Mistakes

I found this article posted on the ActiveRain Real Estate Network site that I thought I would share.  This outlines some of the important things that the home owner needs to consider when selling.

Marie Dinsmore, Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist

The Dinsmore Real Estate Team  |  www.dinsmoreteam.com

Marie@DinsmoreTeam.com | 770-712-7789

***

A recent survey of real estate agents by ActiveRain has confirmed that there are certain things a seller should avoid if they are trying to get their home sold for the best price in the least amount of time.

The results of this survey are no surprise to real estate agents, but sellers need to understand that eliminating as many hurdles as possible to the sale of your home will help you achieve your desired outcome.

Biggest%20Home%20Seller%20Mistakes_ActiveRain_Oversized

Here are the top mistakes real estate agents commonly see made by homeowners looking to sell their house.

1. Overpriced Home

2. Showing Availability – It’s Difficult to Set a Showing

3. Cluttered Space – Unwilling to Depersonalize or Remove Clutter

4. Unpleasant Odors in the House

5. Seller Unwilling to Make Repairs Prior to Listing

6. Sellers Unwilling to Negotiate with Buyers

7. Bad Photos in the MLS

8. The Home is Just Plain Messy

9. Sellers Who Like to Play Tour Guide During Showings

10. Picking the Wrong Agent

– See more at: http://activerain.com/seller-mistakes#sthash.KkUyAuG9.dpuf

Community Resources

WELCOME

2019 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.


utilities

Looking for a fast way to connect all of your utility services online? Try Connect Utilities.

Please let us know if there are other resources you'd like to see.

Marie@DinsmoreTeam.com

770-712-7789