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Thursday, July 10, 2014

Top 4 Ways to Make Your Miami Valley Home Stand Out to Potential Buyers


Looking to buy or sell a home in Dayton, Ohio? Click here to perform a full home search, or if you're thinking of selling your home, click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation so you know what buyers will pay for your home in today's market. You may also call us at (937) 432-2644 for a FREE home buying or selling consultation to answer any of your real estate questions.

How to Handle a Competitive Market in Miami Valley

Since people are always asking us how the market is doing, we thought we should share some of the trends we've observed so far this year. According to a report we found on CNN Money, home prices are up 11% nationally since last year and 22% since the market crash in 2008. Here in Ohio, however, we are a bit behind the nation as a whole - as we've seen only a 3% increase in home sales. In addition, there is a 5% decrease in homes sales compared to this time last year. This can either be looked at as bad news or as a great opportunity. 

For example, sellers now have more time to prepare their home for the market. Because prices have risen and sales have fallen, homes that are in perfect condition and priced correctly are the ones buyers are looking for.

So what are the top 4 things buyers are looking at in every home?
  1. Kitchens- Make sure your kitchen has been upgraded and freshened up. 
  2. Bathrooms- Same for bathrooms, modern fixtures and finishes are a great boost to your home value.
  3. Flooring- Needs to be neutral and up-to-date.
  4. Paint- This is one of the easiest fixes and have a great impact on your final sale price.
Of course, making sure your home is decluttered, depersonalized and as clean as possible can give your home an edge over other area homes. Focusing on those top 4 areas that matter most to buyers will give you the most impact for your time and money.

As you can see, setting yourself apart isn't necessarily easy. Luckily, because of current market conditions, you have plenty of time to get your home in tip-top shape before putting it on the market. Use this to your advantage! As always, if you have questions about your particular market, please give me a call. We want to help you stay informed. 

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Our Latest Testimonials


Denise Swick Reviews Judy Kator
How we helped Judy sell her home by actually working for her

I’ve had my house up for sale before with other Realtors and they just came in and told me what I wanted to hear. I felt very comfortable with Denise and her team and it was more of a conversation. She didn’t just list the home for sale and hope someone came along to buy it, she actually worked for me which made it a great experience.



Denise Swick Reviews Mark Mosher
How we helped Mark sell his home within a week by our skills and expertise

We had really good results when we worked with Denise. Our home was sold within a week and we had multiple offers. The first offer dropped out and Denise, using her skill and expertise, was able to go to the second buyer and get them back into the picture in order for us to sell our home.



Denise Swick Reviews Ruth Mosher
How we helped Ruth sell her home with our ability to keep them on track

Everyone on Denise’s team was knowledgeable, gave us clear directions, and did their job efficiently. Denise is very professional in her appearance and in her approach. She gave us the opportunity to voice any concerns we had but she was also able to keep us from straying for our focus.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Why Did the CEO of a For Sale By Owner Website Hire a Real Estate Agent?


Looking to buy or sell a home in Dayton, Ohio? Click here to perform a full home search, or if you're thinking of selling your home, click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation so you know what buyers will pay for your home in today's market. You may also call us at (937) 432-2644 for a FREE home buying or selling consultation to answer any of your real estate questions.

Selling Your Own Property Cuts Out 80% of Buyers

This last weekend I saw something interesting in the news. The former CEO of the For Sale By Owner website (www.buyowner.com) recently listed his $3.7 million dollar home with a real estate agent! Interesting, right?

I understand why people try to sell their homes on their own (I always try to sell my old cars before I trade them in), but I think it really says something about for sale by owner properties when a CEO hires a real estate agent to sell his home.

You should know that 80% of buyers are working with real estate agents, so you miss out on your largest target market when you try to sell your home on your own.

When selling your own, you also miss out on the 2nd largest target market - the large community of professional agents. When you list your home with us, we expose it to over 5,000 agents in the Dayton / Cincinnati markets. 


A good real estate agent will expose your home to a much larger audience, which will help to draw multiple offers on your property and raise your selling price. The larger the audience, the higher the demand will be, and with more demand comes a higher price. I know you want to save money by selling by yourself, but you will actually be leaving money on the table if you sell on your own.

If you're still thinking about selling on your own, email us for your FREE For Sale by Owner packet that provides all the necessary information you need to sell your home in Ohio.

If you have any other questions, you should always feel comfortable to call or email us.

Monday, April 28, 2014

5 Ways to Make Your Offer Stand Out when in Competition


Looking to buy or sell a home in Dayton, Ohio? Click here to perform a full home search, or if you're thinking of selling your home, click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation so you know what buyers will pay for your home in today's market. You may also call us at (937) 432-2644 for a FREE home buying or selling consultation to answer any of your real estate questions.

How to Stand Out to Sellers
Here in Dayton/Miami Valley we're experiencing a relatively low inventory for a busy spring market. Unfortunately, this is causing some buyers to lose out on homes, so I have some tips on ways that you can stand out to these sellers in order to get the home that you want.

  1. Price: This one is simple. In a market such as the one we're seeing in Dayton/Miami Valley, where multiple offers on a home are common, it will benefit you to offer the highest price possible. Don't be afraid to go above the asking price because if the house does not appraise to that value, then you can change your offer to match that value.
  2. Leave out the Extra Stuff: Sometimes people demand more than the property when they buy a home, such as a hot tub or a washer and dryer. These things aren't part of the real estate, and most mortgages will not allow these items to be included. Also, sellers may attach a value to these items that is more than they are worth.
  3. Shorten the Inspection Time: Sometimes inspections can take 2-3 weeks, but you have to keep in mind it only takes 30 days to close on a property. Sellers are on pins & needles during this time, and the sooner you can get the inspections done, the happier the seller will be. After the inspections you can negotiate a deal and make the seller confident that you will be closing on their property.
  4. Make Occupancy Attractive: You want the seller to know that you have closed on the property before they move out of it. I would recommend giving the seller 24-48 hours to move out of the home after a closing just to make them feel more comfortable and less stressed about the situation.
  5. Get Pre-Approved, Not Pre-Qualified: Not a lot of people realize this, but there is a big difference between these two designations. A pre-approval is a much higher guarantee that a buyer will be able to pay for the property. A pre-qualification only means that you have talked to a lender and that this lender has approved your credit. In the case of a pre-qualification, the lender does not verify your income or assets.
So, these are a few things we do to try and help our buyers here in Dayton/Miami Valley stand out from the crowd. Since the beginning of this year we have helped 30 buyers find homes, and hopefully you will be next! We always fight to get our clients the best terms in negotiations and do our best to satisfy any and all of their needs.

Contact me if you need help buying or selling real estate in Dayton!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Buying a home this spring in Dayton/Miami Valley?... Here's how to get the home you want!


Looking to buy or sell a home in Dayton, Ohio? Click here to perform a full home search, or if you're thinking of selling your home, click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation so you know what buyers will pay for your home in today's market. You may also call us at (937) 432-2644 for a FREE home buying or selling consultation to answer any of your real estate questions.
 
How to Create Urgency When Buying a Home in a Busy Market
The spring real estate market here in Dayton is buzzing with activity and I wanted to give my buyers a list of ways to create a sense of urgency. The market is very crowded, and you will need to act quickly to get the home you want. Here are a few ways for you to do this.


1. 80% of buyers are looking at 20% of the houses: You have a lot of the same buyers that are looking at the same houses that you are. So if you find a property and fall in love with it, buy it quickly because someone is waiting in line behind you. This also means that there are plenty of available properties in Dayton, but these ones are off the beaten path, so just dig a little deeper to find these homes. 


2. Know your Priorities: You should create a must-have list of items or features that you absolutely need in your new property. Keep the list around 5 to narrow down your property search and eliminate properties that do not match your needs.

  • This will allow you to decide quickly if a property is right for you or not. If you need a 2-car garage, then homes without one would be eliminated. Make a list of your needs and then start your home search to filter out unsuitable homes right from the beginning.
3. Hire a Professional Agent: Most people do not realize that when they are buying a home, they are not the one paying the commission for the real estate agent. Often times it is the seller that pays the commission for the buyer's agent.
  • However, make sure that you are using a competent agent who can relate to your wants and needs. You can cost yourself a lot of extra money by choosing an incompetent agent who doesn't know your needs and who cannot negotiate in your favor.
  • My advice would be to interview multiple agents, and only hire an agent that is selling 25-50 homes a year (at minimum).
    • We have a list of questions you can ask prospective agents, just ask us about it and we can get you a copy.

Hopefully this information has been helpful to you. Please contact me with any questions, comments or concerns you might have about Dayton real estate.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

5 Tips Everyone Can Use for Spring Home Repair


Looking to buy or sell a home in Dayton, Ohio? Click here to perform a full home search, or if you're thinking of selling your home, click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation so you know what buyers will pay for your home in today's market. You may also call us at (937) 432-2644 for a FREE home buying or selling consultation to answer any of your real estate questions. 

If you thought this last winter was rough on you, imagine how hard it was on your home. Although I'm glad that spring is finally here, I want to remind you that it's not time to relax just yet. I have a few spring home repairs that you may need to check up on whether you're buying or selling.
Here are few spring renewal tips for your home:
  1. Check for mold: Check your basement or other areas that you do not frequent. There has been a lot of moisture in the ground, and this could cause major problems in your home. Also check for cracks in your basement.
    • If you have a sump pump, make sure it's working properly. I think a lot of them were working  overtime in the last few months.
  2. Check your Roof: With the tremendous amount of snow we've had here in Ohio, you're going to want to check on your roof, and you'll probably need to hire a contractor to do this. Luckily, we can refer one to you if you don't know any. 
    • Pay attention to your gutters too, because the melting snow could have easily moved or shifted them and caused some damage. This goes along with all of your shingles as well.
  3. Check Your Pavement: Be aware of cracks in your driveway or sidewalks caused by the brutal winter that we just experienced here in Ohio. With all of the salt and sand used for the snow, some people are experiencing lots of problems with their driveways and sidewalks whether they're pavement or asphalt.
  4. Trees: Once again, the heavy winter we had may have caused branches to break or die, so you may need to hire an arborist to check on your tree (we can also refer one to you).
  5. Furnaces: You worked your furnaces this past winter, and it's probably a good idea to get that checked on as well. While you're getting your furnace checked, it's probably a good idea to get your AC unit check out for the coming spring and summer.
Once again, these are some things that you should probably check up on whether you're buying, selling, or remaining put for the near future. Also, if you need any help with these repairs or check-ups, please contact us and we would be glad to share with you some of our preferred vendors.

Hopefully this information has been helpful to you. Enjoy!


Monday, February 24, 2014

Nine Easy Mistakes Homeowners Make on their Taxes & How to Avoid Them



Looking to buy or sell a home in Dayton, Ohio? Click here to perform a full home search, or if you're thinking of selling your home, click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation so you know what buyers will pay for your home in today's market. You may also call us at (937) 432-2644 for a FREE home buying or selling consultation to answer any of your real estate questions. 

I was recently reading an article out of the National Association of Realtors that talked about common mistakes made during tax season. In order to clear things up, I'm going to list them off here:
  1. Deducting the Wrong Year of Taxes: In our area, the taxes you are paying right now are the taxes you owed from 2013. Be sure to be careful when going through your taxes.
  2. Confusing the Escrow amount on payments: Sometimes people confuse their escrow payments with what they actually paid in taxes. Be sure to use the tax bill or the statement from your mortgage company because they will tell you exactly what you paid in taxes.
  3. Deducting Points on a Refinance or a Purchase: It is my understanding that you're only allowed to deduct a portion of the points that you pay on a refinance each year that you took the loan out for the refinance. However, on a purchase the points that you paid are definitely tax-deductible.
  4. Failing to Repay the First-time home buyer credit: These credits that were offered in 2008, 2009, and 2010 each have different payback options. For 2008, you must repay 1/15th of the credit each year. For 2009 and 2010, if you stop living in the home or sell the property within 36 months, you must repay that credit in full.
  5. Claiming too much mortgage interest: Taxpayers can deduct up to $1 million in mortgage interest on an acquisition and also up to $100,000 on mortgage equity lines.
With all this being said, I'm not trying to give you tax advice, but to share some facts I learned by reading this article. As always, refer to your accountant or tax specialist for any questions you might have. The article I read can be viewed here with the complete list of common errors: http://www.houselogic.com/home-advice/taxes-incentives/common-tax-mistakes/#.

In the meantime, contact me with any questions or comments because I would be more than happy to assist you. You can reach me at (937) 432-2644 or email me at Denise@deniseswick.com