For Sale by Owner

Usually buying a house entails buying it through a listing agent, but sometimes the homeowners themselves will list their house. So why would people do this? The main reason is to save money. To prepare yourself to sell your own home, there are a few things you need to do. The first thing is to make sure the outside of your house looks well taken care of and pruned!
The next thing to do is to price your home. You can do this by hiring an appraisal professional, but if you want to save this money, you can do it yourself. This can be done by seeing what other homes that have similarities to your house have been listed for.
Next, you need to ensure you take good photos of your house. Most people shop for houses online, so you will want to make sure you have very eye-catching photos listed. This means they need to be taken with a high-definition camera as well as natural lighting. Time it to where you have the best natural light coming into your house. This will make your house look more appealing to others.
A detailed listing is also a must. The listing needs to stand alone, and draw people in. You can brainstorm ideas by looking at other house listing and see what attract you. If this attracts you, it will most likely attract others.
Once the listing is up, being available is vital. Potential buyers need to see your house, and if you are the one selling it, you are the one everyone will have to go through. A potential buyer should always be able to reach you, whether this is through e-mail, phone or in person. You need to engage these potential buyers and try to convince the to come see your house. Be prepared to work with a potential arrangements for showing the home. If this buyer is coming with their own agent, you’ll most likely have to leave the house during this time.
After all this, you’re not done yet! You’ll still need to know what to do during a closing too. This can be a pretty complex process that entails lots of paperwork. You have to stay on top of this, and to also make sure the buyer is doing the same thing. Selling your home yourself is pretty hard, however it is possible if you put in the time and effort!



When moving into a neighborhood, you may be wondering about the dreaded HOA fees in the back of your head. Well fear not, because this post will tell you all you need to know about HOA fees!

The first and most important thing to do when it comes to HOAs is to research and do your homework! Home owner associations manages the common area and amenities of the neighborhood There are certain documents that have all the HOA information that you should be sure to read before making a decision of moving in. One of the documents is the covenants, conditions and restrictions. This is what all the homeowners in the neighborhood must abide by. These rules can limit you on many things such as maintenance or number of pets.

The HOA budget and financial statements are also very important as well. The budget should include operating expenses, salaries and utilities. Thus, if the budget is small, then you may have to spend extra money or have your dues increase. When you join an HOA, you gain access to their amenities, and this is sometimes what makes it worth it to some people. This is because you are able to enjoy things you would not be able to otherwise such as pools, gyms or tennis courts.

So in short, you need to ensure you do your homework so you won’t be surprised come move in day. Many feel that HOAs and the rules that come with it can be very limiting. Research what these rules are and see if this is something you can or cannot live with.

Lowering Property Tax

With the many things that one needs to remember and consider when buying a house, one things that can be pretty overwhelming is property tax. These taxes can continue even if the mortgage is paid off! Well fear not, read further and you can find out a few tips on how to lessen your property tax.

One thing you can do, which most people do not realize, is to request a copy of your property tax card from the local assessor’s office. This card will inform the homeowner about the tax history of the house. It will let you know the size of the lot, dimensions of the room, the number and types of fixtures in the home and it will include any upgrades that have been done. If there are any discrepancies, then you can tell the tax assessors and have a re-evaluation done.

Any changes structurally to your home will, in the end, increase your tax bill. So, when you are considering adding a new addition to the house, make sure to research how much this will affect your tax payments so you will be prepared. Your local tax department should be able to help you with this.

Unfortunately, tax assessors have a certain amount of subjectivity when it comes to assessing a home. But more often than not, more attractive homes receive a higher assessment. In a nutshell, your property is being compared to your neighbor’s and the urge to improve your property is strong, and this may cost you alot more in the end. Try not to make any cosmetic improvements to your house until after the assessment has been done!

Since you are able to look your own property tax card, this means you can also look at other property tax cards as well. This means you can review other homes and compare and contrast your own home. This can lead to finding mistakes that in the end can lower your own property tax!

When the assessment of your house is being done, don’t let the assessor wander around your home unattended. More often than not, the assessor will only see the new and improved features of the house, and not the things that are out of date. By walking with them, you can point of the old and new things in your home to ensure you receive the fairest evaluation possible.

This all may sound a little overwhelming and impossible. But just make sure to do your homework and due diligence to ensure you are receiving the fairest property tax you can!

Gardening & Landscaping ideas

When selling your house, a great idea to help make your home look even more irresistible would be landscaping and gardening. This is because the landscaping is the first thing potential buyers will see when they come to visit the house. This can actually add up to 28% to the overall home value!

One thing that is a must are trees! Trees are actually very helpful when they are on your property. They help block and suck up water that would otherwise runoff into storm drains. They also of course reduce carbon dioxide and help to save money! They reduce the amount of energy it takes to cool a house in the summer, and break winds during the winter and keep your house warmer!

Native plants are also another must. Native plants can help wildlife believe it or not! The National Wildlife Federation awards special awards to those homeowners who create natural backyards. This allows birds, butterflies and other animals the option of living here. Plants can also make you money as well. Having a large number of native plants may seem very irresistible to others, and this can boost your home value.

Another must have is outdoor lighting! If lighting is done tastefully, then it can highlight the great parts of your house and landscaping choices. It helped to prevent and potential slipping and falling. This also helps prevent any unwelcome guests such as burglars. This also just makes your house feel more like a home. All of the lights makes the house feel warm and inviting. All of these simple things can make your house feel very inviting and can easily raise the monetary value of the house!