Tag Archives: Real Estate

Great Home Air Quality Improves Real Estate Value

15 Dec

Great Home Air Quality Improves Real Estate Value

When you are selling a house, one of the things you should consider is the quality of air inside the house. This isn’t always something that immediately comes to a seller’s mind, but it is important because smell is a powerful sensory factor tied to emotion, and potential buyers are looking for a place that feels clean and homey, not  dirty and potentially threatening to their health.

First and foremost, assess the home’s indoor air quality, so you know which areas are most important to address first. There are companies that offer services that can determine the sources of poor air quality, such as dirty air filters, furniture, and carpet, so you can address them.

One way to improve the air quality in a home is to remove any dirty old carpet since that could be harboring odors, allergens, and air contaminants. Generally, floors that have hard and smooth surfaces are easier to clean, and they don’t retain as much dirt. They are also advantageous from an aesthetic perspective because they offer a nice glossy finish to a space.  since they make the house look better and more appealing especially when there’s that gloss from the floor.

Also be sure to have your air checked for traces of gasses, particularly carbon monoxide, which is a toxic, odorless  gas that cannot be detected without proper testing equipment. Carbon monoxide is released from  gas stoves and gas pipes. In small, normal amounts, it is okay, but if there are any leaks or malfunctions that cause it to be constantly present or in larger amounts than are normal, it can be detrimental to a person’s health and even cause death in serious cases. By being able to assure buyers that the house has been tested for carbon monoxide, they will feel much safer in your home.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent


First Things First When Flipping Homes

8 Dec

First Things First When Flipping Homes

Home flipping can be a great business that provides a fantastic return on investment when done well. Although the idea of remodeling a home and turning it around quickly for a profit is exciting, there are a lot of details that go into making it a successful venture. A lot of planning and prioritizing must occur in order to ensure that you make the best decisions for increasing your profits – not necessarily just what you “want” to do.

Time and money are key when it comes to home flipping, so you must have an organized strategy in place. Things like building a home extension, constructing a sun room, or adding a pool are very tempting to jump into, especially when you have a perfect vision of them in your mind.  But, before you pursue those types of projects, you must ask yourself: are those the most important things to work on, or are there much more pressing, profit-producing matters to address?  What good is a beautiful sun room when the plumbing in the house is horrible? Who is going to buy a house with a pool once they find out about the faulty foundation? You can lose money quickly if you don’t  prioritize your projects in order of importance and greatest return on investment, so sit down and lay out a solid game plan before you begin.

Before starting on beautification and making upgrades, makes sure that everything else in the house is structurally sound and working well. Start with the basics. Check your major heat & air, plumbing, and electrical  systems. The home’s foundation should be strong. The roof should be without holes or cracks. Paint should be finished off, not cracked and chipping.  The list could go on and on, but  just make sure that you address any fundamental repairs and replacements first before you move on to “exciting” things. Building a solid foundation from which to work is the most important thing. That is what buyers are looking for when they choose a house. Most of them don’t want to take on major projects – they just want to move into a new home. This will also help you avoid any problems with home inspections once the house is under contract.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent

Use the Holidays to Sell Homes Quickly

1 Dec

Use the Holidays to Sell Homes Quickly

The holiday season is upon us – take advantage of it as a time to sell homes! Oftentimes the holidays are seen as a season in which it is difficult to sell homes due to the cold, wet, dreary weather that affects the motivation of the home buyers. Nobody wants to go looking for homes under such conditions! However, don’t be discouraged by this traditional mindset because you can actually turn the tables and transform the holidays into a season for home selling!

Take a look at the positive side, and one of the first things you’ll realize is that there will be less competition from other real estate agencies this time of year. As a result, it will be easier for you to capture the attention of potential customers. Despite less competition, however, you will still need to  implement strategies to sell the home quickly, and what more obvious way to go about that than to play off the fact that it’s the holidays.

Spruce up the home’s exterior and make it inviting.  Since it’s Christmas time, add tasteful decorations, such as a wreath on the front door or red ribbons on the light posts. Try displaying a large vase on your front porch filled with holiday elements, such as tree branches, dried fruits and nuts, and even hints of shimmer. The holidays remind people of family and good times, so by adding visual holiday elements like this, buyers will immediately associate a certain level of hominess with your house, which is important because people buy based on whether or not they can envision themselves living in a home.

As always, however, remember that it is important to always showcase the features of your home first and foremost. The key to adding a holiday touch is to keep it minimal. Don’t use too many decorations, or you will cover the home’s features. By adding too many decorations, you also run the risk of making the home look crowded and less spacious. Make sure that the colors of the Christmas decorations do not clash with the colors of the home’s design. Utilize lighting that creates a warm and golden glow in your rooms.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent

Green Homes in Real Estate

6 Nov

Green Homes in Real Estate

Green Homes are one of the latest trends in the real estate industry. One of the reasons why green homes are in such demand is because of the increasingly environmentally-aware society. Having a eco-friendly home is an effective contribution to the green efforts of your community. Green homes also offer great benefits to homeowners, since they save money by cutting the need for additional energy.

A green home’s flooring should be made of recycled materials. Being eco-friendly is a trait of a green home and the materials used should be safe for the environment. The installation process involved should be eco-friendly, without harming nature by releasing gas fumes or other toxic elements. The most commonly used materials in eco-friendly flooringare cork, bamboo and linoleum, all of which give off a warm, inviting and cozy appeal. Additionally, they are durable enough to last for years. These materials do not contain harmful chemicals such as formaldehyde, which is known to be damaging to health. Unfortunately, these toxins are present in products utilized in many homes that are not eco-friendly.

One note-worth material used in green homes is salvaged lumber. Salvaged lumber can be obtained from homes that are old and beyond repair. Salvaged lumber has many advantages for your home since it is already aged to a progressive density unlike new lumber. Solar energy implementation is another efficient characteristic of a green home. This effectively decreases energy costs as well as improves energy efficiency.Make sure that the home equipment to be used, such as ovens, washing machines, dryers, microwaves, refrigerators, washers and other electric appliances are energy efficient. Otherwise, look for other green-approved appliances for your home.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent

Increase Your Real Estate Success with Home Staging

13 Oct

Increase Your Real Estate Success with Home Staging

Home staging is a powerful tool for attracting potential buyers and selling your home quickly. Since home staging usually requires a financial investment, it is wise to research lower-cost alternatives for achieving high-end results.

Cleaning is the first priority when it comes to home staging. A perfectly clean home increases the value in people’s eyes because no one wants to buy a dirty house. Start with cleaning all the windows inside and out. Dust furniture, door frames, ceiling fans, light fixtures, and blinds. Throw away anything that cannot be cleaned or that is beyond repair.

Staging also requires depersonalizing your home. Pack away any items that are significant to you, but that do not necessarily add to the interior design of the home or that are so specific that they draw buyers’ attention away from the house and onto your things. You want people to focus on the house, not the details of your life. However, if you plan to market your home to families, it is smart to leave a great photo of your family on display, as it creates a warm, family-friendly environment and allows potential buyers to better visualize their family in the home.

Start packing your belongings. This is important for showing that you really are selling the house and no longer have any attachment to it. This is important for buyers because they want to be guaranteed that this house is officially on the market and that the seller isn’t tempted to change their mind.

Curb appeal is one of the biggest things that attracts the attention of buyers, so focus on improving your outdoor areas. Manicure hedges, clear away brush, cut back tree limbs that hang too low, and plant some flowers that add to the beauty of the home without overtaking it.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent

The Difference Between a Realtor and a Broker

15 Sep

The Difference Between a Realtor and a Broker

The real estate business can be both challenging and exciting. There are lots of things to learn when entering the industry, and it is important to understand the nuances of different terminology. For example, do you know the difference between a real estate agent, a Realtor, and a broker?

A real estate agent is someone who sells real estate, but who has not achieved certain basic industry certifications. They must join a real estate brokerage under the  supervision of a broker in order to transact business with clients.

The Realtor designation is something that is achieved by choice, but is not technically a requirement. Real estate agents and Realtors perform the same transactions, but don’t let this confuse you because there are huge differences between the two. For you to become a Realtor, you must pass certain licensing requirements and join the National Association of Realtors (NAR). The association holds a high standard of practice, especially as it pertains to continuing education and ethics, so you automatically know that Realtors have a certain level of qualifications. NAR members adhere to a 17-point code, and a benefit of working with a Realtor versus just a real estate agent is that, if a client encounters an ethics issue with a Realtor, they can file a complaint with NAR. If they deal with just a real estate agent, there is no standard process they can utilize.

Brokers can be any of the following: a Realtor, a property agent who is a Realtor, and an estate broker who is also a Realtor. Confusing right? The main qualification is that a broker’s license exam must be passed in order to officially become a broker. There are also additional educational requirements, which makes it a lengthier process than just obtaining a basic Realtor’s license. Educational and legal requirements differ in each state, as do the minimum work experience requirements as a Realtor, which are usually 1-2 years. A broker works independently and owns their own brokerage, or they can co-broker with another licensed broker. They hire Realtors to become a part of their brokerage and oversee all transactions and property-related business that occur within their company.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent

Comparing Foreclosure and Short sale

11 Sep

Comparing Foreclosure and Short sale

Have you fallen behind on your mortgage? There are two major options to be taken in the event of delinquent mortgage payments. These options are foreclosures and mortgages.

Foreclosure happens when your mortgage loan is at default and the bank reclaims possession of your home. The advantage that foreclosure brings is that you can walk away from your home, which may be advantageous if your recent mortgage is higher that the home value. However, the disadvantage of foreclosure is that it takes a heavy toll on your credit score that will stay on your credit report record for up to 7 years. Your score can be negatively effected within a range of 100 to 150 points after a foreclosure. The worst part about foreclosure is that it will render your search for a new home difficult. After foreclosure, you may no longer be eligible to purchase another home for two to five years or depending on the legislation in your state.

A short sale, on the other hand, is a type of a bank agreement which provides that your home will be sold for less than what you have invested in the event that you are no longer able to make a payment.

Positively, a short sale gives you control, not the bank. This is referred to as a more responsible form of walking away from your home, but still retaining the chance to buy another home as soon as possible in certain conditions. If you have fallen behind on the payments, it will take at least three years before qualifying on FHA loan. Also, your credit score will take a negative dive ranging from 50 to 130 points. Even though credit bureaus never show “short sale” statuses on a report, you are still identified as either paid in full for less or settled for less, which will damage loan opportunities in the future.

Both foreclosure and short sales are bad records or warning signs on your credit report for several years, thus generating less opportunities for loans or good interest rates.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent