Local community and real estate information for Cheshire CT by your Cheshire Real Estate Experts, Sally Bowman Real Estate
Sally Bowman Real Estate's Blog
Sally Bowman Real Estate
Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 352
We've all heard the old adage....."walk a mile in someone else's shoes", but how can that apply to getting your home ready for showing to potential buyers? Easily....you need to start thinking as a "buyer" when you're getting your home ready to put on the market, and not a seller. Here are a few tips to help you out before welcoming Cheshire Buyers to your home:
1. Have a Friend Pre-Listing Party. Yes, that's right, invite a few of your trusted friends over, crack open a bottle of wine and go room to room with a notepad. Have them objectively look at each room and give suggestions as to what they would change or would be a red flag, if they were to look at your home as a potential buyer.
2. Next, Consult a Great Real Estate Agent! Run your list of fixes, developed by your friend prelisting party, by your agent and find out which ones are worth the fix for the money, or not. He or She will also go over your Homes Worth and develop a personalized marketing plan with you.
3. De-Clutter! I know, we've said this over and over again. But it bears repeating because it's so important. Let's take a closet as an example: Taking 1/2 of your clothing off of a closet rack and shelves, then neatly organizing what is left, will make a closet look twice the size! Another area is extra furniture, which is usually shoved to the corners of the room. Instead of trying to hide it in the corners, rent a storage unit, clear out 1/2 of the furniture and stage the rest to maximize the space and shape of the room so that the room looks larger, is easy to naviage and has an open, airy feel.
4. Think Neutral. Now I'm like everyone else, I love pops of color throughout the home and I think the home feels a lot warmer and cozier with color. But if you're putting your home on the market, you need to go neutral. It is hard for a potential buyer to envision themselves in a home that has "you" written all over it. Neutral colors paint the picture of a blank canvas which gives your potential buyer the feeling that they can create their own oasis of a home.
5. Clean out your garage. We are all guilty of using the garage for storage, but trust me, your buyer wants to know that their vehicles are going to be able to fit in their garage. Again, even if you need to rent a storage unit, clear out all the boxes and seasonal supplies that are not in use. Make it spacious, clean.....and room for your vehicles.
6. Make sure Hardwood Floors are gleaming! People in general love hardwood floors, but nothing is worse than reading in a listing that a home has hardwood floors throughout and then getting to the home and finding dull and scratched hardwood that they know they'll have to spend money on refinishing! A simple soapy wash followed by a rejuvenating floor polish will do wonders to make your floors look like new....and only cost around $50!
7. Restore your natural stone, tile and grout. If your bathrooms and kitchen tiles have lost their luster you may want to look into getting them refreshed. Professional restoration services are available in most cities and are relatively cheap compared to a complete renovation, and can make your kitchens and bathrooms look brand new.
Hines Hardware has trained personnel to help you in many of the techniques to restore what you have in place in your Cheshire homes today versus having to do total renovations. Utilize their expertise to help make the preparation for your selling process go smoothly and quickly. For more information about selling or buying a home in Cheshire check out our website www.sallybowmanrealestate.com.
It's spring and you've always been told that this is the perfect time to put your Cheshire home on the market. That's TRUE, but what else should you focus on to insure that your home sells quickly; at the highest possible price? Here are a few things to consider when you're looking objectively at your Cheshire home:
You know you have an incredible house that you've put your loving touch into, but what else can you let potential Buyer's know?
1. Are you living in an area with spectacular views of wooded lands, water, historical significance?
2. What is your neighborhood like? Is it extra friendly where neighbor helps neighbor when someone's in need?
3. Your local schools....what are they like, can you highlight something specific with the teachers, teaching philosphy, awards?
4. Do you have outdoor living space? Great patio or deck, outside stove for cooking summer meals, plenty of space for entertaining?
5. Is your yard exceptionally large or beautifully landscaped?
6. Do you have a corner lot?
7. Have you recently put on a new roof, siding, shingles, windows?
Then look inside your home and do the same.
1. Do you have a fireplace and hearth that is different than many they may see in other homes?
2. What about your kitchen, the heart of your home? Granite or Marble Countertops? Designed by a Home Interior Professional? Center island with vegetable sink?
3. Is your home friendly to the environment? Have you used energy efficient windows & doors, do you have solar panels, is the flooring bamboo or cork?
4. What about storage space, mud rooms, bonus rooms?
5. Are there beautiful hardwood floors under your carpets?
The graph in the upper left hand corner shows the percentage of home buyers that felt these "Hidden Gems" were worth every penny they cost in the overall sales price of a home.
These are all things that you want to highlight about your home, that shows the buyer the difference and special "gems" in your home versus other ones they may look at... and why your home is the only one they'll want to buy. At Sally Bowman Real Estate, we look at all these special selling points with you to develop a marketing strategy that optimizes these features and in turn highlights them for potential buyers.
If you plan to put your Cheshire home on the market this spring, NOW IS THE TIME. Give us a call and we'll be happy to come to your home and evaluate all these points with you, and will share up to date market conditions here in Cheshire. Buying & Selling homes in Cheshire is what we do best! I've lived her my entire life, and participate in many community projects and events. I also received the 5 Star Agent Award this past year for the impact made in Cheshire for homes bought and sold. That means a team of Cheshire Community / Real Estate Experts', with exceptional local knowledge, great technology and the most current real estate information, will give your home the exposure and fast sale you deserve.
Did you know that the most precious gift you could give won't cost you a cent.....and it could help a child who is going through cancer treatments - or a neighbor who has suffered a serious injury. Your blood donation could make a critical difference to someone in Cheshire!
Blood donations are critical to save the lives of the people who really need it. Statistics show that only 4% of the eligible donors, donate blood. ONLY 4%! Also consider that there is a 90% chance that you will need donated blood during your lifetime!
Blood donations are used to help for patients who need blood transfusions for cancer treatments; it enables surgeries; it gives trauma victims a chance for survival. We take for granted that blood will be there when we need medical attention. But the truth is, without an ample supply of donors, blood supplies can run short - and run out. This is why blood drives are so important, and why every eligible donor matters!
Here's how you can help:
On Saturday March 29, 2014, the Toce Family will host the Katherine Toce Memorial Blood Drive. If you have not yet made an appointment, it's not too late... Just go to www.redcrossblood.org or call 800-733-2767. Appointments can be made from 8:00 am - 12:45 pm. and will take place at the:
Highland Elementary School
490 Highland Ave
Cheshire, CT. 06410
Although the Toce's precious daughter, Katherine, did not survive her battle with cancer, her family has turned their loss into a gift of life through the Memorial Blood Drive. As of Dec. 2013 a total of 3044 donors presented, 2758 productive units collected, that's an 90.6% production rate. Each productive unit will help three people, that equates to 8274 people.
Cheshire, CT is a community that truly cares for its neighbors, and the response to the Katherine Toth Memorial Blood Drive sets another example of this. As a longtime resident of Cheshire and a local business owner, I encourage you to participate in helping our neighbors in whatever way you can! Together we make Cheshire a wonderful place to call home!
ST PATRICK'S DAY IN CHESHIRE......ONE OF MY FAVORITE DAYS OF THE YEAR!
Even though the weatherman has predicted snow....nothing can dampen the spirit of this wonderful day! The office is closed and I'm getting ready to set out on my journey. First stop....The Vic for lunch and Guiness with family and friends. I just love this place and all the wonderful memories it holds for me. Then it's back home to make my traditional Irish dinner for my family. I can smell it already....corned beef in the oven surrounded bycarrots, celery, cabbage and potatos just like Gram Bowman taught us to make so many years ago. And don't forget the fresh Irish Soda Bread and colcannon, the dinner would not be complete without them.
Another tradition that I cherish every year is our parade through town with Kevin, my family, the Irish Flag and my 96 year old neighbor Rita Murphey. Rita has lived in her home since she was a child, one of 10 kids in the family, and every year she joins us for the parade!
Last, but not least it's celebrating with friends at CJ Sparrows, the Notch and Waverly. It just doesn't get any better than this! Cheshire is such an incredible town to live in, with fantastic people and businesses that make all of our days a little brighter.
This week I'm going to tackle the age old question.....should I rent my home out, if it doesn't sell? A recent study did show that 39% of sellers prefer to rent out their last residence than sell it when purchasing a new home. With many homeowners refinancing at a low rate, and the housing market struggling with low inventory, the amount you could charge for rentals has gone up.
If you are a residential real estate investor, than this tactic makes sense. However, if you really don't want to become a landlord and are only looking at it as a way to purchase your new home, while covering the mortgage on the original home...then you need to ask yourself these questions:
1.) How will you respond if your tenant says they can't afford to pay the rent this month because of more pressing obligations? (This happens most often during holiday season and back-to-school time when families with children have extra expenses).
2.) Because of the economy, many homeowners can no longer make their mortgage payment. What percent of tenants do you think can no longer afford to pay their rent?
3.) Have you interviewed a few experienced eviction attorneys in case a challenge does arise?
4.) Have you talked to your insurance company about a possible increase in premiums as liability is greater in a non-owner occupied home?
5.) Will you allow pets? Cats? Dogs? How big a dog?
6.) How will you actually collect the rent? By mail? In person?
7.) Repairs are part of being a landlord. Who will take tenant calls when necessary repairs arise?
8.) Do you have a list of crafts people readily available to handle these repairs?
9.) How often will you do a physical inspection of the property?
10.) Will you alert your current neighbors that you are renting the house?
Once you have answered these questions, you will be in a good position to decide what is best for you and your family.
(Information courtesy of KCMBLOG)
It's going, going...gone!
Sally has always loved playing softball, from her younger years with her brothers, to flying high through Holy Cross High School and onto Adelphi University to continue her favorite sport! Not only was #17 an incredible ball player, she was an incredible team-mate as well. Known for her hard work, friendliness and athletic ability, this young lady made many long-lasting friendships with her team-mates along the way.
That's what makes March 2, all that more special. Sally will be inducted into the Connecticut Softball Hall of Fame by her high school coach, and Hall of Famer himself, Bob Marcella; and will join the ranks of other team-mates who were inducted into the Hall of Fame. Team mates from Adelphi University include: Julie Bolduc, Kristen Peterson-Blandino, and Doreen Lumbra.
The 25th Connecticut Softball Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony takes place at the Aqua Turf, in Southington MA, on Sunday March 2nd. Sally is being honored and recognized for her athletic achievements as well as her contributions to the sport of Fast Pitch Softball.
Sally's committment to excellence and hard work has served her well through her years of playing softball....and continues today in all of her community and business endeavors.
Please join us in Congratulating Sally for this extraordinary achievement!
Extreme Home Staging
Today's post is the first in a new series that will address the power of "Staging" your Cheshire Home for sale. Staging your home is a proven strategy to help sell your Cheshire home more quickly, and for a higher price.
What is Home Staging?
Home staging is an applied art, for strategically presenting your Chesire home so that it appeals to the most Cheshire home buyers. A home staging strategy typically will include, but is not limited to: enhancing curb appeal, beautifying landscaping, improving entry ways, presenting key rooms, rearranging furniture, adding or removing accessories. Excellent home staging, requires a unique staging plan for each home based on the potential buyer for the demographics of that Cheshire Area home's price range, location, and style.
An experienced, professional Cheshire Real Estate Agent, knows what Chehire, CT home buyers want and can advise you on how to strategically highlight your home's best features. That's why you need Sally Bowman Real Estate....we know what Cheshire home buyers want!
10 Home Staging Ideas To Sell Your Cheshire Home
Clutter MUST GO! Removing all your clutter is the first thing you need to do!
Furniture Arrangements Some people believe rooms will feel larger and easier to use if all the furniture is pushed against the walls, but that's not the case.
Transform Whole Rooms If you have a room that's gathered junk, change it and make it functional, to add value of your home.
Lighting Matters Lighting updates can make staged homes feel comfortable and welcoming.
Bigger is Better Paint rooms the same color as an adjacent room, to create the feeling that the room is bigger.
Neutral and Appealing Tone down outdated finishes or paint by painting a living room a new, bright neutral color.
Experiment with Paint Color Deeper wall tones will make some areas more intimate & cozy. So it's OK to use dark paint in bathrooms, dining rooms or bedrooms.
Rearrange Pictures and Wall Hangings If your home is like most, the art is hung in a high line encircling each room.
Rearrange, Add or Remove Accessories Mixing the right accessories can make a room more inviting.
Add Fresh Flowers Fresh flower arrangements, from a florist or your own yard make your home more appealing.
In the coming weeks, I'll post detailed thoughts and ideas to help you use each of the categories on the list.
Have you been wishing for sightings of spring? I know I have....and we may be getting that wish this week with temperatures reaching the 50's. One problem, with so much snow on the ground, and the ground itself frozen up to 20 inches, where is all the melting snow going to go?
That answer is not one we're going to like! Flooding. It is extremely important to pay attention to the weather reports and take any precautions necessary to safeguard your home and it's belongings.
1- Make sure your sump pump is working properly.
2- Invest in back-up generators in the event that you lose power and your sump pump would not work.
3- Check the sump pump discharge pipe outside of your home to ensure it is not frozen, clogged or blocked by mounds of snow.
4- Make sure your gutters and downspouts are clear and are moving water away from the base of your home.
5- Check your street drains to make sure they are clear of debris and can handle the melting snow.
6- Repair leaking or cracked basement walls and cracks in basement floors. Seal basement walls with waterproofing compounds to avoid seepage.
7- Move snow on the ground away from your house, create a clear drainage path.
8- Elevate the furnace, water heater, and electric panel in your basement if you are susceptible to flooding.
Hines Hardware store has all the necessary supplies you will need to safeguard your home. Their inventory is well stocked and their knowledgable staff can help answer your questions and direct you in the proper supplies needed to secure your home.
It's pretty amazing looking at all the snow Cheshire has gotten this year. Even though we are not at record totals for year to date, the combination of snow accumulation mixed with the extensive number of days with frigid wind chills makes this a record year already.
All we can do is get out and enjoy what mother nature has blessed us with and hope that the peakings of spring will be here soon. In the meantime, Mixville Hill is calling our names and the snow is perfect for making snowmen and snow forts. Our parks are ready and willing to be your cross-country ski paths...and our local ski venues are rocking! Mount Southington is celebrating 50 years with many ski specials and Mohawk and Powder Ridge have dynamite courses.
I'm personally yearing for the golf season to begin.....but in the meantime......I'll be heading for the hills and outdoor fun and remembering all the fun we had with my Dad.
Great memories on Mixville Hill!