Date Archives: February 2021

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February
23

Few of us could have imagined the changes 2020 had in store for us this time last year.  Changes to our work lives, schooling, finances and retirement plans, travel plans and commute times, family organization, even cooking, outdoor activities and other hobbies have been transformed. For some of us, there's been a growing mismatch between the home we've loved for years and the way we live now.

Even if you're happy in your current home and it fits you to a tee, you owe it to yourself to consider the market.  Let us help you identify the opportunities that make up the silver lining of a very difficult year. It may be that the perfect buyer for your home is out there right now.  You might maximize the utility of your home by selling it now and moving ahead to your next real estate investment that will better accommodate your needs in the future. 

Q.     What about the upgrades I was planning to make to my outdated kitchen? I want to get top dollar for my home!

A.     Many buyers would prefer to choose their own appliances and finishes.  A good Buyer's Agent will help them connect with qualified professionals to do the work on a convenient schedule after they take possession of the home. Instead of making cosmetic improvements, focus your energy on any functional repairs that may be needed.  The point is to reinforce the idea that your home has been well-maintained.  You can look forward to putting your creative energies into a new home!

Q.     Where will I move ?

A.     Wherever you want!  See something you like? Let us approach the current owner and make inquiries on your behalf.  Your interest might persuade someone else who just happens to be "sitting on the fence" at the moment.  We can also find you a "lot and home package."  Builders often buy vacant land for future spec projects at very low prices. Many of them are more than happy to sell under the condition that you use them to construct the new home.  This can represent a great value for the buyer since they'll already have plans selected that suit the location and meet local building codes.  You'll often have the added advantage of choosing your appliance package, paint colors, hardware and other features without having to pay the higher price of a truly custom home. 

 Q.     Life is so hectic these days.  I don't have time to drive around looking at things or spend hours online.

A.     You don't have to, that's our job!  We can be sure that you're notified as soon as something new comes on the market that meets your specific criteria.  If you need three bedrooms, you will only see homes with three bedrooms, not two, and not four.  You'll be surprised at the way we're able to customize our searches by the school district, distance from the beach, community amenities, and of course the features of the home itself.  We also see a wider range of options coming on the market now.  Some people are letting go of their primary residence to move to their second home full-time.  Some are getting out of their rental investments and some are letting go of investments in land. We will help you explore all the options.

 Q.     How will I manage to afford it?  Times are tough!

A.     You might be surprised.  Talk to your banker or credit union representative.  Rates are still at near all-time lows and getting pre-approved makes any offer you do make all the more attractive.  For some, working from home means being able to save money on their commute to work.  It may also mean you can relocate to a neighborhood with no POA fees, lower taxes, lower insurance rates, or simply a lower price per square foot.  More people are also combining households these days. What was once the 'down-sized' retirement home for someone who has decided to move in with adult children might be the perfect next home for you!

 Q.     We want to wait and sell at the top of the market.  Are we there yet?

A.     You never really know where the top of the market is, until it's already in the past. This is why "market timing" doesn't actually work when it comes to selling real estate. By the time you notice a slight drop in closed prices, everyone else sees it too.  And those closed prices are based on contracts signed 30-60 days or more in the past! There will be a slight increase in inventory at this point because nobody wants to miss the opportunity to realize their home's top value.  That's understandable but increased supply means decreased relative demand.  Prospective buyers will also think they might gain some advantage by waiting a bit longer. They feel no urgency anymore. Additionally, homes don't typically sell the moment they're listed. The idea of market timing is based on automated sell orders you can set for stock market investments. The mechanics of this situation are just not the same. Another, often overlooked, reason for selling before you see the absolute peak is what we like to call "instant equity." When you anticipate the market, your new home's value will be lifted as we crest the peak of top pricing. That value becomes yours as equity, while you continue to pay the low mortgage rates locked in shortly before your closing date.

 Q.     What's the next step? How do I begin the process of listing my home?

A.     You've heard you should never expect something for nothing, but that's not entirely true.  The first thing a good listing agent will do is gather information for a comparative market analysis.  We do that for free, before you sign any sort of contract, so you will know where you stand in a competitive market.  It's also the only way for us to develop an appropriate marketing plan.  We have the tools to present your home to the pool of most likely buyers as soon as it's listed.  Whether that means including it in the Luxury Portfolio program, or digging into our contact lists for the new buyer who has been waiting to leave a long-term rental for a new home that is just the right fit. We're hearing from lots of folks who want to downsize as well as those who want more space, or just more flexible space. And we're always active with relocation clients. Don't forget, we've been turning visitors into locals since 1981!

Drop us an email or give us a call.  We look forward to hearing from you!

 

February
22

Southport has some great locations for fishing and relaxing by the water. Here are some great Southport docks you should visit.

Do you believe a bad day of fishing is better than a good day at work? Then grab your rod and reel in some fun in Southport. North Carolina is an awesome place for fishing enthusiasts to lose track of time and let loose some line. Whether you're an avid angler or just someone who loves to relax by the water, our real estate agents believe that these fishing docks in Southport won't fail to lure you in.

  • Kingsley Street Park — E. Bay Street/S. Kingsley St., Southport, NC 28461
    Living in Southport means living near plenty of fishing spots. Unfortunately, though, that means that you'll be sharing much of the shoreline with other anglers. For a less crowded place to drop a line, head on over to Kingsley Street Park. This park includes a small yet sufficient dock that extends into the Intracoastal. We love Kingsley Street Park because it's a great compromise: it's close enough to downtown without all of the noise, but it's far enough to feel like you've got the dock to yourself somedays.

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February
15

Did you know you can show your pet some love with your home improvement? Here are some home upgrade ideas perfect for your pet.

Family members come in different shapes and sizes. Some are two-legged others are four-legged. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, more than 48 million U.S. households have dogs, and 31 million others have cats. With such figures, it's no wonder that many homeowners keep their furry family members in mind when renovating their homes. Considering Fido's or Fluffy's needs can provide a pampered environment that will make everyone happy. And if you decide to sell your home down the road, the improvements can appeal to pet lovers looking for Southport homes for sale. Here are 5 practical and visually appealing renovation ideas your pets will love.

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February
8

Having trouble planning your home improvement projects? We've got you covered with expert tips for budgeting your projects.

Budgeting for home improvements has always been a challenge. It's impossible to know exactly your expenses because new issues can arise and call for additional purchases. Unexpected challenges such as previously unknown plumbing issues are common, so it's important to have plans in place to keep costs under control.
  
Our real estate agents suggest budgeting for home improvement projects using the following tips:  

  • Have a plan.  
    Figure out what your priorities are when you're planning to renovate your home. Make a list of the most important changes while also putting down some bells and whistles that would be nice to have. You may for example, desperately need new flooring, or perhaps you've decided that while new flooring would be nice, you may be able to clean and buff your existing ones if needed. This prioritized list can be adjusted as needed along the way as you learn your estimated costs.

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February
1

Southport Takeout

Is that love we smell in the air…or just the amazing cuisine of Southport? Perhaps a bit of both! Valentine's Day is right around the corner, and our real estate agents encourage you to start thinking about your dinner plans ahead of time. As Cupid draws back his bow, peruse the menus at these Southport restaurants perfect for couples planning to celebrate Valentine's Day with takeout.

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