Pros and Cons- Selling Your Home During Winter Months

December 29, 2010

My sellers often ask me whether they should put their home on the market now, during the winter months, or wait until the Spring market. Certainly, most homes look better when the flowers are blooming, birds are singing and the grass is green. But there are advantages to putting your home on the market NOW, while the temperatures are low and the skies are often grey.

  • You have less competition now than in the Spring market.
  • Your home can show very cozily with a fireplace alight with logs and candles, and the warmth of the indoors contrasts to harsher outdoors temperatures.
  • The less bright light of a winter’s day softens some flaws of the interior;
  • Immature landscaping or a less-than-flat backyard is not as important when covered with snow;
  • Buyers out there in the market under severe weather conditions are much more serious and anxious to buy;
  • If you want to sell your home, don’t keep it a secret! Market it to sell!

BUT beware!!

  • Sloping driveways need to be snow and ice-free;
  • Heating needs to be uniform.. no cold rooms or drafty places!;
  • Windows with the “steamy” look of broken seals must be replaced;
  • House smells need to be fresh and not reminiscent of last night’s dinner;
  • Interior lighting needs to be even and bright enough that reading and other activities are done easily;
  • Expect fewer showings.

Attract Buyers/Add Value- Does Your Home Have the WOW Factor?

August 17, 2010
Wellesley MA real estate luxury real estate

Add some Wow Factor to your Home

Add value and Attract Buyers- What IS the WOW factor?

Curb appeal has always been important for homesellers. With the vast majority of today’s homebuyers starting their search on the Internet, the appearance of your property is more critical than ever. You only have a few seconds to catch their attention as they scroll through listings online to get them to stop and take a closer look.

But the role of curb appeal goes beyond just making a good first impression.

How to Get the WOW Factor: Selling for a Better price!

  1. Paint the house
  2. Have the house washed
  3. Trim the shrubs and green up the yard
  4. Add a splash of color: It could be a flower bed of annuals by the mailbox, a paint job for the front door, or a brightly colored bench or an Adirondack chair. You can get a cute little bench at Home Depot for $99. Spray paint it bright red or blue and set it in the yard or on the front porch.
  5. Add a fancy mailbox and house numbers
  6. Repair or clean the roof
  7. Put up a fence
  8. Perform routine maintenance and cleaning

Remember: The way your house looks from the street can impact its value. It can also shorten the time it takes to sell your house.

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WILLIAM RAVEIS REAL ESTATE WINS #1 BEST PLACE TO WORK IN THE STATE OF MASSACHUSSETTS!!

June 15, 2010

Bill Raveis sent his MA associates news of this prestigous award:

Dear Team,
 
Recently, we participated in a survey by the Boston Business Journal for the Best Places to Work.  There are thousands of companies in the Massachusetts area that participated but most of them did not make the first cut only 443 qualified.  The second round selection was even tougher and only 60 companies qualified among those only one real estate company…William Raveis made the cut.  William Raveis was one of the 5,000 or so real estate companies in the State of Massachusetts that made the top 60.   That honor alone is very big. 
 
Since we made the top 60, I was invited to come along with Chris and his management team to a function in Boston which over 500 participants attended.  In the top 60 there are many national and international firms such as Microsoft, Google, Harvard Health Care, Accenture, Ritz Carlton, and Comcast.  During the meeting, they were presenting the awards starting with the 60th company and counting down to #1.  It was very exciting because we made the cut in the Top 20 and then we made the cut in the Top 10 and when the top 5 were announced we were still in the running.  Microsoft was announced as the Top #3 Best Company to Work for and we were still yet to be announced.  When #2 was announced Chris and I looked at each other and realized that we won the #1 Best Place to Work in Massachusetts.  It was quite a moment for me, Chris and his management team.
 
William Raveis is the #1 Best Place to Work in the State of Massachusetts which was produced by an online anonymous survey that are 600 sales associates, administrative and sales management team filled out.  We are humbled by our award and very appreciative of our team. 
 
Congratulations to Chris Raveis, Alain Pinel, our management/administrative team, and our sales associates!
 
Friday’s recognition is particularly meaningful because it proves that our mission statement for our entire company located throughout four states – Our agents are our customers are not just words on a piece of paper it is the way we are. 
 
Thank you, team.  You are the Best! 
 
William M. Raveis, Jr.
Chairman and CEO
William Raveis Real Estate, Mortgage & Insurance
Licensed Broker in CT, MA, NY, RI

FINDING OPPORTUNITY IN A SHIFTING MARKET: WHAT IS THE PRICE OF PERFECTION?

June 14, 2010

Today’s real estate market has experienced yet another shift and sometimes it may feel to the seller that  the buyer appears to hold all the cards. In an attempt to re-establish some parity, I know of a seller who has turned the typical procedure of making an offer and then having the inspection upside down: he is asking his buyers to have their inspections first and then decide to make an offer based on the knowledge the buyer has. The seller may elect to establish a non-negotiable price before any inspections, decide before the inspection to negotiate items or not and price accordingly, or wait to see what the buyer’s inclinations are once the inspection is done. There are advantages in this strategy for both buyer and seller:

  • The buyer understands the property’s strengths and flaws;
  • The buyer can adjust the offer by the estimated costs of repairs/remedies needed;
  • The seller can choose to set the price upfront and make the inspection issues non-negotiable;
  • In states where an accepted offer is signaled to the buying public by a change of status on the local MLS, the seller avoids offers “falling out” over inspection items and therefore also avoids a cloud over the property.

No house is perfect: a good inspection serves as a tool for both buyer and seller. In a market where the demands of the buyer may be unsettling for the seller, this process puts a property’s condition up front for both sides. The seller now has some role in the decision-making process before the “deal falls apart.”

New Home Heating Oil Regulations for MA Homeowners

May 13, 2010

Starting July 1, 2010, MA homeowners who heat with oil are responsible for preventing oil leaks from tanks and pipes in your home. Read this short article to see what you can do now to avoid costly fines if a leak does occur.

Wellesley’s Museums: did you know there are 3 ??

May 11, 2010

Wellesley has 3 museums.. each one is a treasure and worthy of a visit! If you are looking for something to do with your family or visitors, here are 3 places of interest.
Davis Museum And Cultural Center is part of the Wellesley College campus and offers permanent collections, special exhibits and special programs. Babson College features a Map and Globe Museum. and The Wellesley Historical Society Museum serves as the historical resource center for the town and offers exhibits to help visitors appreciate the history of Wellesley. These are great resources for people new to Wellesley or just visiting!

Get Some Great Ideas for Your Kitchen; Wellesley 2010 Kitchen Tour This Saturday, May 15th

May 11, 2010

</AClick here to get details about the tour. What a great way to get ideas for your own kitchen from these fabulous kitchens on tour this coming Saturday! get your tickets ahead of time and save $5!! Kitchens are the center of most homes and their features are changing with newer, greener appliances, the use of steam for healthy cooking, and the use of new and exciting materials for the design. What are YOUR most wanted features to have in a kitchen? Add a comment below and share your thoughts!

Wellesley Selectmen Close Loopholes in Large House Review

May 11, 2010

There was quite a bit of discussion in this week’s Town Meeting as members voted to address the inclusion of attic space in calculating the size of new residential builds in Wellesley. At issue was the town’s desire to limit the size of new construction in Wellesley. Read the article and you decide.. are these limitations good or bad for Wellesley? Make a comment!

How Do I Know My Home is Priced Right??

May 8, 2010

How Do You Know Your Home is Priced Right?

WOW—you love your home, you have enjoyed it for years. Your family grew up in it! You can’t wait to sell it to someone and you just know it will have a high value because that’s what it means to you.

WRONG
…or not necessarily RIGHT…..
Here’s the upfront truth:

When you put your home on the market, it becomes a property, a commodity, the value of which will be determined by a buyer who wants it and can buy afford to buy it. Your beautiful 21 x 14 dining room where so many happy family memories were shared is now simply a 21 x 14 room and potential buyers are looking at it and wondering if their own furniture will fit, not thinking or caring about your happy memories.

You have lived with the 1980’s bathrooms just fine, thank you. They worked for you. Everything is in working order and it was good enough for your family all these years. A potential buyer, looking at the outdated bathrooms, is adding up the expense of tearing them out and remodeling. Then they mentally deduct this perceived cost from the price you are asking.

So you get your house on the market and here comes the acid test…IF you have showings but no return showings and no offers, and IF the number of showings starts to decline, THEN…. YOU ARE PRICED TOO HIGH. It is simple as that. The market is rejecting your house at the current price. Look at your Realtor as a professional partner in reacting quickly and repricing according to current market conditions.

Do You Think the Wellesley Market Is Improving?

May 8, 2010

Here’s what I think: YES! I compared last month’s sales activity with a year ago same period. There were 24 SOLDS this year and only 13 same time period last year…AND we’re selling at 96% of asking now as opposed to 94% a year ago. What do you think accounts for this change? I just read an interesting blog