Advantages and Disadvantages to an MLS Search

MLS searches (or Multiple Listings Service) are based off the principle; „Help me sell my inventory and I’ll help you sell yours.“ It is a unique concept, though one not many other industries use. Real estate brokers acknowledge the advancements in technology once MLS searches became popular, and are willing to present the advantages and disadvantages of MLS queries to interested parties. The decision of utilizing this service is ultimately up to the potential buyer.

No For Sale By Owner (FSBO) Options

One of the big disadvantages to MLS searches is they do not include homes sold by the owner, unless the seller has negotiated a certain percentage of the commission to the realtors. If interested in FSBO’s, the buyer must search potential neighborhoods for FSBO signs and negotiate a price within their range. If the buyer does not know much about negotiating prices, or how much homes are worth, MLS queries still provide some contribution for comparison purposes. If excessive research is undesirable to the buyer, then MLS queries provide another benefit.

Less Research for the Buyer

Buying a home might already be considered a stressful process for some. MLS searches can cut down on some of that stress because it reduces the research the buyer must conduct. There are already so many other aspects a buyer must remember to look into, including the community, crime rate, demographics, school districts, job outlooks, among others. MLS queries place hundreds of homes from the participating brokers into one database, with hundreds of fields with which to search the properties. Knowledgeable brokers with years of experience determine these popular search fields; whereas if the buyer conducts the research by himself or herself, he or she may question whether the information they find is accurate.

The Internet Outdates MLS Queries

The younger generation might claim the Internet is called the „Information Highway“ for a reason. While it is true certain states have their MLS queries readily available on the Internet, not all states have this accessibility. It is also important to consider that information researched on one’s own time might not be as accurate as the MLS searches provided by real estate brokers.

A Trusting Community

As mentioned earlier, all MLS queries are based off the „You scratch my back, and I’ll scratch yours“ premise. In other words, there are no hidden agendas. All brokers participating in MLS queries are trying to provide the buyer with the greatest number of options. They keep the buyer’s requirements in mind and try to create satisfactory customers.

Ultimately, the decision to use MLS searches or to conduct the research on one’s own is up to the potential buyer.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Real Estate Photography Tips For Realtors – Don’t Do it Yourself, You’ll Lose Your Commission Check

I’ve done it myself; taken what I thought were great listing pictures and used them for my online MLS listing. My clients thought they were fine and I thought they were just fine, until I started working as a buyer’s agent in Seattle a few years back.

I worked with over 40 different buyers a week and everyday I’d hear, „Did you see those listing pictures? There’s no way we want to see that house, it’s a dump! Does the listing agent know how bad they are?“ Obviously, the listing agent didn’t spend anything on real estate photography.

My buyers would also see some great listing photos and want to get in to see the home that afternoon. We’d step inside and they’d wonder if it was the same home they saw online. They felt cheated because the pictures were nothing like the real home. (but at least the listing agent got buyers walking through the house).

It all came down to the listing pictures they saw online. That’s essential marketing for listings! Give buyers a great picture and they’ll jump inside the house that day. Give them a „do-it-yourself“ picture and they’ll move onto the next home. The listing pictures make the difference, especially when you spend a few bucks on professional real estate photography!

Even when the listing pictures were better than the actual house, guess what? It still got the buyers inside! That’s your goal as a listing agent; get as many showings as possible. Professional real estate photography makes that happen.

With upwards of 80%+ of buyers looking online now, the listing photos are the first thing they’re looking at and basing their initial impressions on.

How much money in lost commissions do you think you’re missing because you won’t spend a couple hundred bucks for professional real estate photography?

If you did spend the well invested marketing dollars on some professional real estate photography…….

  1. You could have more satisfied clients because the home sold faster.
  2. You could have made more cash because you didn’t have to drop the sales price when the listing became stale on the market.
  3. You could look like a top producer in the area because of the quicker sales, better looking listings and more satisfied clients. Your overall image is enhanced, big time!

Isn’t it funny how such a small aspect of your business can affect the whole thing? Anytime you realize how one issue affects your net profits, that’ll make you perk up, right?

Now don’t give me the excuse that it’s too expensive because it’s not. Look at it as a marketing and advertising expense because that’s exactly what it is. And real estate photography is one of the best things you can spend your marketing dollars on.

You have a couple options……..

You could grab a professional in real estate photography in your local area and offer them $50-$200 to come to your listing and take some fabulous photos. Make sure they’re top notch, have all the right equipment and understand the goal of these photos. You don’t want to pay for real estate photography that’s no better than your own.

Your other option is to go with a company like Vicaso.com who does real estate photography exclusively. Their business is listing photos for real estate agents!

You can schedule your photo shoot on their website, pay about $200 or so and get the most captivating listing photos you’ll ever see. Even if you have a crack house listed for sale, their real estate photography will make it look like a palace.

I’m telling you; don’t skimp on your real estate photography. Look at the cost as an investment. If you spent $200 on professional real estate photography and got back another $20,000 in commissions that year from faster sales, more clients, and higher listing prices, wouldn’t that be worth it? You betcha!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Tips To Find the Best Homes For Sale

Are you on the verge of buying a new home in the city? It can be a thrilling episode altogether if you’re planning to change the neighborhood or moving to a new city. The townhouses stand to be a favorable choice for most property buyers interested to move to cities. The traditional narrow and terraced houses with more than two to three floors are good choices for families looking forward to budget homes. Again, investors consider buying such properties for their future benefits. But, if you and your family are excited to get a new residence in the town, few suggestions might help you.

Make your priority list

If you have a family with you, then you guys should sit along and discuss the priorities based on which choose the townhouse. For instance- a single person’s apartment differs from that of a family. If you are a family person with one or more kids, you need sufficient space for the children. You’ve to think about the future when your kids will grow up and will seek individual rooms. If you have are intending to buy this property as your permanent address, you have to consider the future. Moreover, you need some extra space, if you’ve pets along with you.

Stick to the additional features

Along with the spacious rooms and the living area for the family, you might have the interest in some special and additional features. It might include the number of balconies, how the rooms are faced, whether the rooms are receiving ample light and air and so on. If you have kids, you need to buy an airy home that receives ample sunlight and fresh air. You can also have a preference of choosing a sea facing or a riverside property so that you can enjoy the view from your townhouse.

Location matters

The location has a very important role to play when you are looking for the house. You gave to stick to the priorities and the location that might also include the priority list when you are about to choose a new residence. Make sure the area has easy access to the marketplaces, gas stations, medical stores, hospitals etc.

Take the help of a reliable real estate agent to find the best homes for sale in your preferred location. Make sure, the professional has the reputation of having the most updated property listing in the area. Besides, the agents help throughout the whole process of selecting and buying the house.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Essential Tips to Finding Condos for Sale

There are a few tips you may want to take under advisement when looking for a condo for sale so that you know the one you choose is the perfect match for you and your family moving forward, a place where you will feel safe and can enjoy for years to come.

One of the first things you are going to want to take into consideration before you even start looking at a condo for sale is to consider your lifestyle. Are you a small family with young children a handful of pets? Are you a single professional looking for the convenience of a lock up and go or are you a young couple who enjoy spending weekends away at various destinations throughout the country? Your lifestyle will determine if condo living is the right choice for you.

Remember a condo, or condominium, is a unit in a complex. This means that you will have neighbors close by, but you also get the added benefit of a host of facilities and amenities. Some come with swimming pools, others come with laundries and there are those that also include a small fitness center as an added convenience.

With your lifestyle identified and you have decided that a condo for sale is the best choice for you right now, you are going to want to look for an experienced an agent. If you have heard of a new complex being built in your area, then contact the agents handling the complex to see if there are any units still available and make an arrangement to view at your convenience. Try and choose an agent who has experience selling these types of units, someone with a wealth of information that can provide you with the advise and assistance you need to make the right investment decision moving forward.

When you find a condo for sale you feel meets your exact requirements, then you are going to want to start working on your financing options. Speak to the agent you are dealing with to see who they recommend for financing. If you have your own bank you have been using for years and you have a good credit history, it is worthwhile approaching your bank directly to see what finance they can provide to you, so you can pay your deposit and secure your unit without delay.

Identify what is included with the condo. In most instances you find that condominiums come with a host of facilities and amenities. Some will have swimming pools, some will have fitness centers and others will have both. These are conveniences that you may or may not make use of, but they are fantastic selling points when you choose to sell or upgrade one day.

Ensure you identify the Homeowners Association fees you need to pay each month and what these fees include. These fees are charged by the association that oversees the complex. In most instances this will include overall maintenance of the building and public areas, along with refuse removal and more. Each association has different rules and fees, so ensure you have a good understanding of these before making any final decision.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Condos for Sale – How to Choose the Right One for You

Have you ever lived in a condominium unit? If like me you grew up in a house with a garden then chances are you have no idea what factors and features to consider when looking at condos for sale. Not being aware of key aspects that could affect your quality of life as well as the unit’s resale value could leave you with a condo you can’t live in or sell.

What to prepare before checking out condos for sale

When a person decides to try buying a condo unit the first thing they do is look through adds, this is one of the most common mistakes buyers make. Prior to looking at units, preparations have to be made which can make looking for a condo easier and in the end more advantageous for you.

Down through the ages people have always said information is the key and looking at condos for sale is no different. Prior to visiting different units hire an experienced realtor. He or she will be able to give you invaluable advice plus his or her services are free since the seller will pay the commission. Another person you need on your side is a lawyer. „Legalize“ is a language not everyone is familiar with and it’s always a good idea that we understand everything we sign, trust me on this my siblings are lawyers. Next, crunch the numbers and look through mortgage requirements. Being ready on the financial front will give you a realistic view on what you can and cannot afford.

What to avoid while looking at condos for sale

Unfortunately not everyone is able to realize that small details can make a big difference in ones‘ quality of life. The following are some things you may not have thought to take into consideration:

• Steer clear of units that overlook the entrance to the garage or where vehicle traffic is if you value peace and quiet.

• Once again for peace and quiet do not choose a unit across from or beside an elevator.

• Make sure your suite does not look over the area where garbage is picked up; this is self-explanatory but is a detail most people will miss.

• Make sure most of the condo’s occupants are owners not tenants.

• Avoid condo buildings that are not easily accessible by any number of public transport services. Trust me you’ll need the service one of these days even if you do have a car.

• Avoid condo buildings where the neighborhood is not as pleasant as you’d like. The building itself maybe top notch but if the location is not at par then think twice.

• Avoid making a decision before going to the condo several times and at different times of the day and night.

• Remember to chat with the neighbors. You’ll need inside information about the area and if you can stand living beside them.

• Do not commit before you have discussed all the monthly fees, maintenance costs, association dues, closing fees and all financial matters. You need to know you can afford it all without breaking a sweat.

• Do not buy a suite with a view you can’t live with, no matter what the building’s amenities are.

Happy hunting.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Real Estate Agents – Strengths and Weaknesses in Listing Commercial Property Today

In this commercial property market there are some real pressures and challenges that confront a lot of property owners when they want to sell or lease their property. They need the help of top agents that really understand the local area, to help in moving the property.

Contrary to popular belief, it is in markets like this that good agents can make a lot of commission. It all comes down to the way in which they package their services and help their clients.

In simple terms, top agents and experienced agents can do very well today providing they work the local area and their database. A good database will always get you through any market conditions and frustrations. In saying, that I am a big believer that a salesperson’s database should not be delegated to the office administrative staff to control.

Every salesperson should take ownership of their database; in this way they will get good activities from it. In this market you need leads that you can do something with. When a database is passed over to the administrative staff to control, the inevitable result is inaccurate and old data. The database soon becomes redundant. The salesperson doesn’t keep it up to date.

Become Change Agents

So we are the ‚agents of change‘ when it comes to helping our property clients an owners get results in this market. We should know how to attract the right people to every property listing that we take on. Exclusive listings are more important in today than ever before. Some top agents will not take on ‚open listings‘ for the very reason that they are a waste of time and effort.

When you know the drawbacks of the industry and the listings today, you can offer the clients that you serve some solid solutions. So what are the drawbacks? Here is a list of some of the bigger ones:

  1. The time that it takes to sell or lease a property can be longer today. Every client has to be conditioned for the best price or rent so the time on market is not lengthened. The first few weeks of every marketing effort are the most important. Position the property correctly to get the best enquiry in this time.
  2. High prices and high rents will achieve nothing. The price or rent for the property should be optimised for enquiry. You have to do more with less when it comes to marketing and inspecting of properties.
  3. A larger number of competing properties can frustrate your marketing efforts and time on market. Check out these properties before you do anything with your listing.
  4. Buyers and tenants are slower to enquire, inspect the property, and then make a decision. Your skills with each stage of the listing should be optimised. Hone your skills accordingly.
  5. Limited finance can put some ‚brakes‘ on the larger deals. Find out where your prospects can get finance from and what the criteria of approval may be.

Whilst these may be drawbacks in the market, they are also opportunities for agents that can get focused and organised. Every problem is an opportunity in disguise.

Are you a solution provider in this commercial real estate market? Top agents are just that. You can be too.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

How Staging Helps To Sell A House?: 4 Basic Options

Many homeowners, learn from their real estate agents, and opt to take advantage of some of the principles of staging their home, in order to enhance the potential and possibilities of achieving the finest, possible results, in terms of selling their houses, for the best possible price, in the minimum period of time! We refer to staging, as a process, which improves, how, potential buyers, might perceive the specific home, in a positive way. In light of that, this article will attempt to, briefly, consider, examine, review, and discuss, 4 basic options/ alternatives, for getting this done, effectively, and productively.

1. De – clutter, and touch – up, limited areas: In some instances, it only takes a little, well – considered, tweaking, to achieve the intended objectives. Before beginning to show the house, reduce the amount of clutter, significantly, remove excessive furniture and furnishings (put into storage, or dispose of), and proceed, to, touch – up, largely viewed areas (many people, can do this, themselves). When a house looks neater and cleaner, and distractions, and negatives, are removed, and/ or, addressed, it usually translates to better showings, and more, qualified buyer, interest, and, hopefully, meaningful offers!

2. Do – it – yourself (DIY) staging: Depending on the size, price, niche market, etc, it may be possible, to do – it – yourself! This DIY staging process, includes, reducing the amount of furniture, and fixtures, especially, any, which seem to show, wear – and – tear, or don’t enhance the overall appearance of the house. This should include: paying attention to curb appeal; reducing/ addressing any unwanted odors, and/ or, eye – sores; touch – up painting, cleaning fixtures, and adjusting lighting, and overall esthetics, etc.

3. Hire professional stager: Sometimes, it is necessary to hire a recommended, quality, professional home – stager! This process, often, includes: removing, existing furniture/ fixtures, and replacing them, with loaner items; enhancing strengths, and addressing areas of weakness, etc. However, because this is often, costly, to do, if you choose, a quality approach, the price range, and niche of the property, are relevant factors, whether this is an advisable approach, for you!

4. Study and understand some of the basics: It makes sense for homeowners, deciding to sell their homes, to thoroughly, study, and better understand, some of the essentials, and basics, which will add value to the transaction, and process! For example, to show a smaller room, such as a dining room, better, it often makes sense, to use taller furniture, and bigger fixtures, hanging from the ceilings. Understand, how lighting factors – in, as well, as where to highlight, and how to minimize attention, to some locations, Where some touch – up painting, curb appeal, etc, may be beneficial, are key considerations!

Become a smarter home seller, by understanding, and taking advantage of the relevant, applicable aspect of staging, for your specific house. Doesn’t that make sense?

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

There Are Many Options When Looking For Cheap Houses For Sale

When you are searching for a home to buy, especially if it is your first, budget is a major consideration. You will need to come up with earnest money, a down payment, and closing costs. Looking at homes in older neighborhoods or a more modest area of town is more likely to produce a number of cheap houses for sale. This will provide you with more choices. You could also consider buying a home with a rental property attached, or even a mobile home for greater affordability.

One possibility is to buy a very old home in need of tender loving care and customize it to suit your needs and taste. The charm and coziness of an older style home can be very appealing, and the romantic notion of renovating is also a draw for a do-it-yourselfer. Of course if it needs a good deal of work, the cost can defeat the purpose of finding an inexpensive house. You are likely to need new carpet and paint in any home you purchase that is not new, but an old fixer-upper could easily become a money pit if you’re not careful.

Another choice when looking for cheap houses for sale, is to try to find a home which has a rentable apartment attached, such as a little duplex where you could live in one half and rent the other to help make your monthly mortgage payment. The cost of this type of home might be a little higher than what you have in mind initially, but could potentially have a big payoff on the other end as your income property pays the lion’s share of the mortgage payment.

If you are looking for cheap houses for sale, don’t discount the value of manufactured housing. These mobile homes, as they are also called, give you more bang for your buck in many ways than traditional housing. Because these are constructed assembly-line style in a factory setting and moved to the site, the labor cost and materials are much lower. This savings is passed on to the consumer, who then has an option on a very affordable home. And to save even more money, look for a previously owned mobile home, which has already seen the bulk of its depreciation. These homes can be as roomy and comfortable as traditional housing at a 30 to 40 percent savings for the same square footage.

Arm yourself with tools such as the classifieds, your telephone, and a map of the city and begin your search–a little research and effort will find you no shortage of cheap houses for sale to choose from.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Foreclosures And Short Sales – Important Tips

There is no need to say that you can’t live without one thing: the roof over your head. The majority of people want their own home, especially if they have a family to take care of. Of course, you will need to do a lot of planning before buying a house as this decision can have a great impact on you and your family. Let’s know more about it.

When Buying a House

If you want to buy your own house, you need to consider a lot of things. You may have to face some serious problems. For example, if you lose your job, you will find it harder to keep your word. And in the worse scenario, you may have to deal with a short sale or foreclosure. This may have a bad impact on your routine life. Therefore, you may want to understand how it works.

Short Sale And Foreclosure

If you are not familiar with the two terms mentioned above, you should know the difference between the short sale and the foreclosure process first. According to most people, foreclosure is a situation where you are forced to give your home back to the lending authority, which is a bank most of time. Once the house is given bank to the bank, you no longer have to pay back the debt.

A Misconception

Aside from this, some people have a misconception that short sale is not a real transaction, which is not true. No matter what happens you should keep your word and you should be ready to meet the deadline.

Foreclosure

In case of a foreclosure, the lender has to auction your house in order to sell it to the person who places the highest bid. The lender will advertise the property to sell it in a certain period of time. However, the law requires the home owner to show up in the court. The home owner is the same person who borrowed from the bank. In the court, the homeowner will have to present his point of view about the mortgage. If you, the homeowner, have strong evidence, you should present it. If you don’t have strong evidence, the judge may issue a verdict giving your house back to the lender.

On the other hand, in case of a short sale, you can sell your property. You will find a buyer yourself and you won’t be required to show up in the court. And it will be an agreement between you and the lender. However, in some special cases, you will need the professional advice of a good real estate broker. But before the closing of the deal, you will need to make sure that the lender expresses his agreement to the proceedings.

The two processes are different in some ways. It’s important that you complete the short sale as soon as possible or the lender may lose interest in the property and may not acquire it. But in case of a foreclosure, you can’t do much as you will have to comply with the court decision.

Long story short, foreclosure is not easy. Therefore, it’s important that you get help from a professional so that the process is completed as smoothly as possible.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

How to Find a Reliable Real Estate Agent in Your Area?

Property hunting is not an easy task, especially if you have no prior experience. Most of the time it is even impossible to find what you are looking for. When you face such a situation, then it is time you realize that you need professional help to find your dream home. The real challenge is to locate a potential realtor to get you what you need. Otherwise, you will end up running in circles with no results. There is more than one way to find a reliable agent. The definition of a good realtor depends on your need. A commercial real estate company might not be of great help with residential properties. Use the following rips to find a good realtor.

Ask A Friend Who Has Just Moved

Friends are of great help no matter what type of situation you stuck in. People move all the time and maybe some of your friends just moved to another place. If any of your friends did move, then he would have done it with the help of a realtor. You should contact him right away to ask how did he find the new accommodation. If the discussion with your friend is satisfactory, then you should probably ask the contact of a similar real estate agent. Don’t forget to ask about the procedure he has followed and what he had to pay.

Take Help Online

Most people prefer a classic approach to find a realtor. If you are one of those people who follow a strict routine and hardly get any day off, you should try online business listings. The best part about these business directories is that you don’t have to go anywhere, especially during the ongoing pandemic. You can find the best real estate options with a few clicks on your computer. Once you are there, you should search for the local residential property agents.

Survey The Market

Surveying the market is one of the oldest methods if you never had any experience with a realtor before. You should know that the realtors for residential property are activated only in their limited area. They might not be aware of if a property is available outside of the town. So, if you have a specific area in your mind to go and live in, then you better find some time and go and look for local realtors that can help you find a good residential option.

Follow The Ads On Vacant Property

You can call this the easiest way to find a real estate agent. You might have noticed often that once a house or a building is vacant the relative realtor puts up and ad for contact. This ad can be a great help if you look at it. When you are hunting your next best home with some particular area in mind. You should look at the advertisements on the vacant properties. Only a few realtors may be dealing with that area. So, getting contact with such an agent will be very beneficial for your property hunt.

Use Social Media

The technology has evolved to an extreme level. Now you carry a small computer in your pocket all the time in the form of a smartphone. Everyone is nowadays trying to register their business on social media. There are two main objectives to do so. First, it can help to attract more customers and it can be a second business as well if you have a lot of followers. All you need to do is to search one of these portals for a relevant business page, for credibility check their comments and followers.

Finding a good realtor is as hard as it seems. You shouldn’t give up on your dream house and use the methods above to find a reliable agent. Always remember, don’t sign a contract when you are in a hurry because you can skip some important details easily. You should visit the home preferably with your family. The family visit is important because you don’t want to face a situation where your family disapproves of the home you choose.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

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