Posts Tagged ‘ home value ’

Can Home Security Systems Increase The Value of Your Home?

Your home’s market value is determined by many factors, including size, layout, location, age, and more. Your home’s amenities – which includes things like a home security system – can have an impact on its market value, too. How much a home security system directly impacts the value of your home can vary greatly, and is influenced by (and influences) many of those other factors.

While a home security system may not directly affect the market value of your home, it certainly increases your home’s intrinsic value. It makes your house a safer place to live because it acts as a deterrent to home invasion. It protects your valuables from loss. Depending on your insurance company and the type of system you’ve got, it could even save you a few bucks on your home insurance each month.

Here are some of the particular factors about your home security system that might impact its value, the value of your home, and your overall safety and security:

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Posted by: HG Blog Admin on November 16th, 2011 under Home Improvement

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New ‘Home Search’ Tab on HomeGain Facebook Page

HomeGain just added a Home Search tab to its Facebook Fan Page.

Now fans can read the Wall tab for timely, interesting and relevant real estate articles and news, as well as visit the Home Search tab and start searching for homes for sale, get a home’s value, and find a Realtor®.

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If you are interested in the HomeGain Blog’s weekly email that alerts you of new posts, subscribe.

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Posted by: Jessica Gopalakrishnan on October 28th, 2010 under Blogging and Social Networking

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How to Increase Your Home Value … On a Budget

Written by Marcy Tate

Learning about how to increase your home’s value on a budget isn’t rocket science. However, if you aren’t aware of some of the basic tips and insider tricks, then you can make costly home improvements that won’t add up to value-added improvements.

istock_000010528981xsmallThe expression, “don’t judge a book by its cover” definitely doesn’t apply to houses. First impressions are extremely important; driving up to a home with an old, broken-down car in the driveway or out-of-control shrubbery can easily turn potential buyers away.

The rule of thumb for increasing your home’s value is to spend money on things a buyer can see.

For example, unless you are planning on living in your home for more than a decade, don’t install a new tankless water heater. This type of upgrade will take several years to see a return on and cost several thousands of dollars to install. Instead, focus on items such as a new garage door, landscaping or a new stainless steel kitchen sink.

Avoid the common mistake of over-improving. Consider what is the norm in your neighborhood. Do you live in a high-end neighborhood? Are home seekers looking for high-end appliances in homes in your area? Don’t bother installing fancy features in your home if it’s not what’s going on in the house next door. It won’t help increase the value enough to make it worth it.

Fix up the Exterior First, Then the Interior

Curb appeal matters and fixing up the exterior will instantly increase your curb appeal and your home’s value.

1. Clear up Clutter – Unnecessary objects around your yard should be removed. A downed gutter or downspout, old bikes, recycling bins and trash cans should all be arranged nicely in your back yard.

2. Landscaping – Spend time pruning your hedges, trees and shrubs. Low-maintenance landscaping can add real value. Lay down some mulch, plant a few native plants or hang some flower baskets on your porch. These budgeted landscaping ideas will save you money now and add value when you sell. Continue reading this post

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Posted by: Jessica Gopalakrishnan on March 13th, 2010 under Guest Bloggers, Home Improvement

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One D.C. Condo, Two Appraisals & a $200,000 Difference?

All of us are fully aware of the recent changes in the appraisal industry.  Another victim of yesterday’s market, there is now a “hands off” message that lenders take very seriously.

home-value-appraisalWhat I have observed is that the bigger the lender, the more distance that exists between loan officers and appraisers.

For instance, it’s my understanding that Bank of America uses a third party company to set up appraisers…whereas some of the more local lenders are able to “select” a pool of local appraisers thru whom they can rotate business.

As a listing agent, I have found that my input in this new climate is crucial.  My job is not to influence, but to educate.

In a couple of instances, I have opened the door for appraisers who were clearly outside of their geographical comfort zone and the information and comps I have provided were important in verifying a clear market value.

A recent experience clearly confirmed the need for listing agents to meet with appraisers.  The names, location, and exact pricing have been changed to protect the innocent…but, otherwise, this is a 100% true story.

In September, I received an offer on a condo that was listed for $1.45 million in Georgetown (three cheers for Georgetown, right? But that’s another story of market holding strong).  After a round of negotiation, the seller accepted an offer for $1.375 million.  The lender for the buyer was a large, national company.

Although I asked the buyer’s agent to let me know when the appraisal was scheduled, the lender did not  keep either of us in the loop (perhaps he couldn’t…because he, too, was not in the loop) and, because the building had a concierge, the appraiser did his on site inspection without giving me notice. Continue reading this post

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Posted by: Kevin Koitz on October 30th, 2009 under Market Trends, Regional

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Why Real Estate Agents Are Worth Their Weight in Gold

The Brooklyn New York real estate market has been really picking up over the past two months.

realtor-value-worth-pot-of-goldAs an example, I want to tell you about a listing appointment I went on several weeks ago. The owner of the house passed away and left the home to her son who lives in Texas. The son called me and invited me over to give them an estimate as to how much the home is worth and to consider hiring me to represent him with the sale of the same.

Upon viewing the house I expressed to them that in my opinion the home was worth between $500,000 to $525,000. When I told him this his jaw dropped and I asked them “why do you have that look on your face?” To which he explained to me the following…

“I had a neighbor approach me as I was cleaning out the house inquiring if I was going to be selling it. I told him I was to which he responded that he would like to buy it. I asked him how much he would pay me and he states $350,000. I thought that was a great offer because in San Antonio Texas those kind of numbers buy you a mansion and my Mom’s house as you can see is small, fully attached and in dire need of major repair work. So I accepted the offer and my lawyer sent contracts to that buyer. Instead of signing the contracts, the buyer started to play games and wanted changes to the contract that my lawyer would not accept. Continue reading this post

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Posted by: Mitchell Feldman on July 16th, 2009 under Regional

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A Functioning Market Niche

The Home Equity Conversion Mortgage is  a  product created by Congress in 2008 to provide some liquidity to the struggling home market. The amount you can borrow depends on age, current interest rates, and the appraised value of your home or FHA’s mortgage limits,whichever is less. Generally, the more valuable your home is, the older you are and the lower the interest, the more you can borrow.

  1. No payments are necessary as long as the house is your principal residence.
  2. No need to repay the loan as long as you or one of the borrowers continues to live in the house
  3. You can never owe more than the value of your home at the time you or your heirs sell the home.
  4. When you sell your home, you or your estate will repay the cash you received from the reverse mortgage plus interest and fees.
  5. The rest is yours.

The Rules Just Changed

More seniors are turning to reverse mortgages to supplement their retirement savings, which have been decimated by market losses. Continue reading this post

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Posted by: Howard Sobel on June 19th, 2009 under Financing, Mortgage and Home Loans

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