What is a Due Diligence Period?

What is a Due Diligence Period

What is a due diligence period in a real estate contract? It’s the negotiated period of time for buyers to do inspections, quotes, etc. to make sure they want to buy the house. Typically lasting 10 -14 days, it allows the Buyer to Cancel with NO PENALTY and the return of their earnest money. Can the Seller cancel during that time as well? NO!

My client Amy was under contract on an older home. It had foundation issues, and she decided not to proceed with the purchase of the house. Because we terminated the contract within the due diligence period, her earnest money was returned to her in full, with no penalties.

I’m a good referral for your friend Sam who’s been burned in a real estate purchase before. Let him know you know an experienced agent that will protect his money and his time.

Do You Have a Home-Selling To-Do List?

home-selling to-do list

I study the market daily to see where it’s headed. I call daily to find buyers for my listings and homes for my buyers. When I work with sellers, I always advise them on how to make their home as attractive as possible by following a home-selling to-do list.

Recently I met with Sharon, who wanted to move back home where her family was. The home is in a nice, popular neighborhood. The condition, not quite as attractive. You see, Sharon had fallen on hard times and was barely keeping her head above water. I helped Sharon on what items she needed to repair, replace, or clean thoroughly, as well as how she could make her home look it’s best without breaking Sharon’s budget. A to-do list solved the problem. With the help of trusted vendors and a little elbow grease, Sharon is good to go.

The next time your friend, Dave says he doesn’t know how much his home is worth, hand him my card and tell him you’ve got his back.

Who Gets Money at a Real Estate Closing?

Who gets money at a real estate closing?

Who loves money? Everyone! Who gets money at a real estate closing? Maybe everyone!

My clients Sarah and Terri were buying a home together. Mom Sarah was putting in the most money, and Terri would also live there and help with bills. Here we were at the closing table. The sellers of the home got the most money; they sold their house. The attorney and realtors got paid, as did the lender. Sarah and Terri wired too much for the down payment and closing costs. They got a little bit of money, as well as a new home. There is nothing better than leaving a closing with everyone happy and wishing each other well.

I’m a good referral for your coworker Ed who wants to sell but doesn’t know where to start. Let him know you know a great agent to guide him smoothly through the sale.

Don’t Let Your Dream Home Become a Nightmare

Don't let your dream home become a nightmare

Don’t Let Your Dream Home Become a Nightmare

My client Amy recently went under contract on her dream home. Everything was fine until it wasn’t. The appraisal on the house she was buying came in $20,000 BELOW the contracted price. How could that be? The appraisal is a critical part of the purchase contract. The lender wants to make sure they are not lending money on a house that isn’t worth the sales price, and the seller ALWAYS wants the appraised value to be ABOVE the contract price. This step is another part of the contract process. The buyer and seller negotiate to a number that all parties agree to after the appraisal. If not, the contract ends, and the buyer’s earnest money is refunded. In Amy’s case, we were able to dispute the value, and all ended well.

The next time you hear someone swapping real estate horror stories, let them know Renee can keep their dream from becoming a nightmare.

You Can Choose Your Closing Attorney

You can choose your closing attorney

Did you know as a buyer, you can choose your closing attorney in most cases? Did you know as a seller you can also choose? What? Yes, the closing attorney is a negotiated item on the contract. If a seller is contributing to closing costs, then they have some leverage with the choice. When a house is being financed, the attorney represents the LENDER. A good agent will negotiate the attorney on your behalf, as it’s important not to let any of the title work delay the closing.

My client, Bob, was paying cash for his home and felt strongly about using his closing attorney. We negotiated that for him, and I was able to add another referral source.

When your friend Jill says, she’s ready to downsize, give her my name, Renee Pruitt, and let her know it’ll be smooth from here on out.

Create an Inviting Front Entrance to Attract Buyers

Create an inviting front entrance to attract buyers

When preparing to sell your home, the outside of your home is an important place to start. Create an inviting front entrance to attract buyers. A buyer will form an opinion about your home before they ever step inside, so it needs to look neat and attractive.

Here are some easy tips to follow:

  1. Paint all entrance doors.
  2. Use a welcome mat.
  3. Use flowering plants to dress up the yard, walkway, and patio.

The Kitchen is the Heart of a Home

The Kitchen is the Heart of a Home

The kitchen is the heart of a home, and the state of your kitchen can make the difference between a quick sale or having your home remain on the market for months. To enlarge the appearance of your kitchen, make the counters as empty as possible because you want to highlight how much counter space you have in your kitchen.

Tip: Expand your counter space by removing small appliances.

What to Think About Before Downsizing

What to Think About Before Downsizing

The kids have moved out, and you don’t need such a big house anymore. With a smaller home, you can expect less yard work, less cleaning, reduced utility bills, and probably reduced property taxes. Before you decide to move, here’s what to think about before downsizing.

  1. Are you ready financially? Talk to a tax professional; will downsizing help your tax situation, or will you possibly get saddled with capital gains tax? Know before you have the sign planted in your yard. If your home is paid off, it may be better to sit tight for a while.
  2. Are you taking too many things with you? Many people downsizing save all their furniture, collectibles, etc. for their children. The reality is, most of their kids don’t want their old things. This generation prefers to buy and toss furniture that’s inexpensive and easily replaceable. While some do prefer their parent’s items, make sure you discuss with your children before making the move.
  3. Are there hidden costs where you are going? Are you thinking of a 55+ master-planned gated community with tons of activities? Make sure you know not only the price of the house but also the cost of the homeowners association fees. Are you buying a home that needs repairs? That house could have many hidden costs of a different variety.

 Whatever you decide, hire a licensed, experienced REALTOR. No one will be better qualified to guide you through the process of downsizing after so many years.

Spruce up Your Yard to Attract Buyers

When prospective buyers come to look at a house, the first thing they notice is its curb appeal. Cutting back overgrown bushes and trees is an easy way to spruce up your yard to attract buyers.

Summer is upon us and with it the peak selling season. I study the market daily and call daily to find buyers and for my listings and sellers for my buyers.

My clients Kelly and Jim own an investment property that tenants just vacated. We met at the house to see the shape it was in before listing it for sale. What a mess! The outside made the house look abandoned. Overgrown grass, bushes, trees, you name it! Weeds everywhere, too! I suggested they get everything trimmed way back, which makes the house look younger. I also have sellers stand on the curb and pretend they’re buying: what would they want to see as a Buyer?

The next time you hear “I just can’t keep up with my house anymore” let them know you know a local expert that can help them sell for the most profit and least hassle.

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