What changes can I make to get more money for my home at resale?

What changes can I make to get more money for my home at resale?

If there is one question I hear from home sellers over and over it is, “What changes can What changes can I make to get more money for my home at resale?I make to get more money for my home at resale?” I’ve had some say they were going to add a pool, do a major kitchen remodel, completely gut and remodel a bath, and I always say, “STOP!”

You definitely don’t want to add a pool. There is a narrow market of home-buyers who would want a pool. If you’re going to do a major kitchen remodel, do that while you live there so you can enjoy it, and why would you want to do a radical bath remodel? What is wrong with the current bath? Here again, if it needs a remodel, do it while you’re there and can enjoy it.

What changes can I make to get more money for my home? Minor remodeling gives more bang for the buck.

The kitchen

Minor remodeling of some of the key areas can give more bang for the buck much of the time. Paint, flooring and good lighting can make a major difference in a bath or kitchen. Painting kitchen cabinets can bring them new life, and that has become a thing today. Rather than a $50,000 cabinet replacement, a couple cans of paint and a little patience can go a long way.

Counter-tops are always a plus, but granite counters can run into the thousands quickly, and you may not recoup your costs. Also, granite is porous and can collect permanent stains. A less expensive alternative (not radically less) is quartz. Quartz will not hold on to stains like granite, but it will give the same appeal.

The bathrooms

The bathrooms are another buyer hot-spot. If the bath appliances are dated, you may want to have them replaced, re-glaized or have them repaired. There are companies that can place a cover over an outdated pink tub and make it look brand new. It’s a less expensive option and it accomplishes the same goal. You can also pick up new bath appliances at Habitat for Humanity Restores for a song.

Simple things like a new sink, toilet, toilet seat, towel racks, light fixtures and even a great shower curtain can make a bath look completely different. Paint and flooring are always a plus. Always make sure the caulk around the shower, sink and toilet are fresh and clean. Simple changes can give an 80%-100% return on your efforts.

What changes can I make to get more money for my home? Throughout the house

There are a few areas that improve your homes appeal with a small investment.

  • New lighting – Consider LED rings for recessed lights, and swap out other light bulbs with more efficient whiter light LED bulbs.
  • New flooring – replace worn and stained carpet.
  • Hardwoods – if you have worn hardwood floors, having them sanded can add a lot of appeal to buyers.
  • Keep everything clean and put away – it makes the house look larger when it is not wall to wall stuff.
  • Make sure the windows can let the light in. Light is your friend.
  • Paint the walls with a neutral color.
  • Better insulation (one of the highest returns)

What changes can I make to get more money for my home? Outside

Curb appeal is always a good thing to concentrate on when preparing your home for sale. Landscaping is an inexpensive plus. Make sure your mulch is fresh and spread What changes can I make to get more money for my home at resale?well. Add a pop of color throughout the flower beds and keep the flower beds weeded throughout the sale period.

Another often overlooked option is the front door. Bankrate.com rates a new entry door as a 90.7% return on the investment. That’s a pretty good return if it causes your home to sell, and it can make a great first impression to your entry.

What changes can I make to get more money for my home? What doesn’t return the most money?

  • A major kitchen remodel
  • A basement remodel
  • A family room remodel
  • A major bath remodel
  • An addition
  • New Windows – lower sale return, but a good investment if you’re going to live there.

These are all things that will make the home more enjoyable while you live there, but if you’re doing them to increase your home’s value for resale, you may be giving money away. For instance, a family room addition may not return more than 69% of your investment. A basement remodel is nearly the same at 70%.

Spend your money where you can get the most for the effort and you will be sure to walk way from the closing table happy. Sometimes, less really is more. Always make sure you do your homework before selling your home and find out  where the best return is for the sale. When you’re ready to sell your home, give Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., a call. We are your local real estate sales pros.

 

 

Winchester-Frederick County, VA Third Quarter Real Estate Market Report – 2017

Winchester-Frederick County, VA Third Quarter Real Estate Market Report – 2017

The Winchester-Frederick County, VA third quarter real estate market for 2017 showed continued growth and stability. The numbers that need to be up are up and the numbers that should be down are down. That’s good news for buyers and sellers.

Winchester-Frederick County, VA Third Quarter Real Estate Market Report – Up Numbers

For sellers, the average price of a three bedroom 2 bath home has climbed consistently for the past five years. The current average price is $279290. That is a 17% increase from the 2013 average sales price of $233113. For sellers, that’s a welcome change from the difficult days of the recession.

The number of home sales is consistent with the past five years. The number of home sales in the third quarter of 2017 was 452. The average over the past five years is 456. Where the real change in the local real estate market can be seen is when you look back to the recession and follow the recovery as it unfolded.

Winchester-Frederick County, VA Third Quarter Real Estate Market Report – Where we’ve been.

The recession did not take full effect until 2009. In 2009, third quarter home sales were 378 and Winchester-Frederick County, VA Third Quarter Real Estate Market Report - 201751% of those sales were distressed properties (foreclosures and short sales). It took an average of 93 days for a home to get to closing. The average home sale was $199640. Compare that to the same period in 2007 and you see that home values dropped 37%. An average home sale in the third quarter of 2007 was $315968.

Shift forward to 2017 and home values have not recovered to that 2007 point, but they have reached a true market value and not the inflated value of 2007. Current market values are now off 12% from the same period in 2007. That gives you some sense of the how inflated prices had risen in the pre-recession years. The current market values have increased in a steady pattern since 2013.

Winchester-Frederick County, VA Third Quarter Real Estate Market Report – Steady improvements

Third quarter price increases rose 4.5% in 2014, 4.4% in 2015, 5% in 2016 and 3.6% in 2017. Third quarter numbers are still being calculated nationwide, but the second quarter numbers give us a glimpse into the nationwide market stability and how it compares to our local market. The second quarter price increases came in at 6.2%. The Winchester-Frederick County third quarter real estate market is right in line with the majority of the nation.

With a steady, and healthy, increase in home values, and a radical drop in distressed properties since the worst days of the recession, it is easy to say the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market is strong a vibrant. There is little concern or worry about bubbles looming on the horizon.

It is a good time to buy, and it is a good time to sell. Interest rates are still at historical lows and homes that are ready to sell, sell quickly and for values near their list price. A 1% – 2% sale discount is common, and discounts exceeding those numbers may show that a property was overpriced for the current market environment at the time of list.

When you’re ready to buy your dream home on the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market, give Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., a call. We are your local sales pros. And, we can do the same when time comes to list your amazing home. Gives us a call, and let’s make something great happen.

 

Winchester/Frederick Co., Housing Market – September 2017

Winchester/Frederick Co., Housing Market – September 2017

The Winchester/Frederick Co., housing market slowed slightly in the third quarter of 2017, but the numbers are still good. The third quarter statistics followed the same pattern as September 2017.

Winchester/Frederick Co., housing market by the numbers

September saw 135 homes sold in the Winchester/Frederick Co., housing market. Of Winchester/Frederick Co., Housing Market - September 2017those 135 homes the average home sale was $279,955. Compared with the past five years, that is a 20% increase in sale price. The September 2013 average home sale price was $221,605.

The average days on the market has stayed consistent during that same five-year period with minimal changes. Three of the past four years experienced 64 days on the market for listings. The summer months typically see a slight decline in real estate sales with an upward movement beginning in early to mid-September. July tends to be a slower month for real estate sales in the Winchester/Frederick Co.

Winchester/Frederick Co., housing market – market health

One of the easiest ways to see if a market is healthy is by the volume of distressed properties for sale on the market (foreclosures and short sales). The distressed market in the local market has become a non-issue.

Winchester/Frederick Co., Housing Market - September 2017September 2017 only had 3% short sales and foreclosures. The third quarter of 2017 followed that down pattern with 4% overall distressed properties. Compared with the previous five years, September 2017 is 10% of the September 2013 distressed market. Those buyers looking for a diamond in the rough are having a much harder time finding distressed bargains.

Winchester/Frederick Co., housing market – slow down whys

It is customary for the local real estate market to slow down in the summer and pick up in the fall. That patter can be seen year over year, but this year is dealing with another issue.

The stock market has a saying that “stocks climb a wall of worry.” When there is turmoil in the world, the stock market tends to expand. It is actually the reverse of what you might think.

The real estate market is the opposite. The real estate market climbs the stairs of certainty. During every presidential election year, real estate takes a wait and see approach to expansion. If the election year is tumultuous, the real estate market may slow down to allow for certainty to evolve. It is likely to be replaced by a more average market once the polls close and the future has some direction based on candidate’s promises.

After inauguration, the market tends to set up a flow that will set the pattern for the year. The 2017 presidential year has been one of continuous uncertainty. Stocks continue to thrive, and real estate is still following a modified wait and see pattern. The third quarters of 2015 and 2016 were more prolific than 2017, but they were also climbing the stairs of certainty. The flow did not change radically, but it did see some adjustments as election day approached.

The current housing market has paused on landing of political wrangling in Washington, D.C. The National Association of Realtors recently revealed that pending home sales have dropped 2.6% nationwide. Uncertainty in Washington, D.C., affects housing on Main St, USA.

The Winchester/Frederick Co., housing market is mimicking the national market flow with the its improvements and cautions. The fourth quarter will tell the tale of 2018. If the next quarter follows the patter of the past five years, the 2018 real estate market will be strong. If Washington, D.C. continues to be a quagmire of dysfunction, investors, sellers and buyers will have to deal with a level of uncertainty while the market tries to expand.

 

Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA) continues to make housing affordable for first-time home buyers.

Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA) continues to make housing affordable for first-time home buyers.

The Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA) continues to make housing affordable for first-time home buyers in Virginia. VHDA is an independent non-profit organization dedicated to making home-buying education available for first-time home buyers. They also offer mortgages, grants and down-payment assistance. VHDA is the number one home-buying education and assistance program in the United States.

Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., has been hosting home-buyer education Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA) continues to make housing affordable for first-time home buyers.seminars for the past six years. The seminars cover a host of topics, including personal finance, credit and credit reporting, working with a lender, the role of the real estate agent, home inspection and the loan closing.

VHDA Seminar Format

The seminars are done in two formats. One format is a two-day seminar with three forty-five minute sessions each day, and the second is a six-hour one say seminar which includes 6 forty-five minute sessions with a lunch break in the middle. The Cornerstone seminars are typically the one day seminars. It is a long day, but the value of the information shared is incredibly valuable and worth a day.

Students leave the seminars with all the tools they need to make their first home purchase. The seminar provides a high quality workbook, which students take with them, and back-end support is also available. Each seminar speaker is certified through the train the trainer program, and each speaker is a professional in one of the seminar fields.

If you’re thinking about buying your first home, make sure to check out the VHDA website to see if they have a program that would benefit you. And, when you’re ready to buy, give Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., a call. We are your local real estate sales pros.