REMODEL OR BUY NEW? CONSIDER INSURANCE IN YOUR DECISION!

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ADRIENNE ABBOTT, Cincinnati’s ‘trusted’ name in Cincinnati Real Estate

EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  or, SellMyHouse@YoAdrienne.Realtor  
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241
Previous Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Adrienne Abbott Real Estate Radio Show!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

 

Office: 513.554.4800

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Desirable location? Check! Good infrastructure? Check!  Quality school district? Check! Neighbors you can stand? Check!

 

What if you have all this but your house is no longer the perfect fit? Maybe the bathroom’s too small, you’d like to finish that room over the garage or perhaps you have another child on the way and you’re going to need lots more room. What do you do?

Is it time to remodel, or is it time to buy a new home and move?

 

There are a lot of economic factors to consider in your decision, and insurance should be included in that list. Knowing how your home insurance company operates will make you a better homeowner whether you decide to improve the home you live in or find a new one.

 

Buying a new home

In short, insurance companies love new homes. They are built to the latest codes and ordinances and use the latest materials, making it less likely that issues will occur. For example, leaky plumbing that can cause considerable damage to a structure is far less likely in a new home than in an older one. New plastic composites used in today’s construction are practically crack and break proof, dramatically reducing the chance of a big leak.

Additionally, people have a tendency to treat new things with more care than they would with something they’ve owned for a while. Remember when you got that new car? At the beginning, you probably swore never to eat inside it or leave bags of stinky gym clothes or beach chairs in it, right? Well, the same goes for a new home. We tend to be more gentle with new homes – we don’t want to mess up the carpeting, ding the paint or crack a window. Believe it or not, insurance companies keep that in mind.

Finally, most new homes are generally built in lower crime areas. Builders want to sell the homes, so they are not going to invest their time and money in locations that are going to be a deterrent for buyers. Insurance companies look at crime rates when it comes to writing your policy.

 

Completing a remodel

What if you just don’t want to move for one reason or another? Maybe you want to wait until your kids finish high school, you are involved in your neighborhood association or just have sentimental connections to your home. Whatever the reason, consider your personal connection to the home first before remodeling.

Then, it’s important to think about the size and scope of the remodel. If you are going to redo the upstairs bath, knock out a wall between the kitchen and the dining room or another smaller project of this scope, then you don’t need to call your insurance company before you begin work (but you’ll need a policy reassessment once the work is complete).

 

 

However, if you are looking to add significant square footage or even vacate your home while major renovations are completed, you need to consult your insurance agent first because you might need a builder’s risk policy. This policy takes into account the fluctuating value of your home during the construction period (elements of the home will be inhabitable), the fact that building materials will most likely be on the property and the future higher “replacement value” of the home.

If you leave your home during renovations and rent another residence while your primary one is under construction, you might need a renter’s policy too. Both of these additional policies are written separately while your homeowner’s insurance remains in place. Once the construction is complete, the primary policy is revised for the new value.

If this is the route you’d like to go, these are the questions that your agent will have for you when you contact him or her. The more you can answer, the smoother the steps to begin remodeling will be:

  • How much square footage is going to be added/involved in the remodel?
  • What are the general construction lines you have in mind?
  • Do you have construction plans?
  • Are you going to stay in the residence during the construction phase?

 

It’s up to you … but you have help.

Basically, it comes down to this: are you planning to sell in a few years or are you looking to live in your home permanently? Contemplate the idea of a “good investment” versus a “lasting legacy” for your family.

Whether you decide to purchase a new home or remodel your current one, consulting with your insurance agent can help you answer some important questions. Ultimately, you want the feeling of satisfaction with your home, and taking these questions into account can help you achieve it.

 

Thanks for reading; and, as always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Adrienne Abbott-Real Estate Radio!” Sunday’s at 4 PM only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

 

 

 

(Contributor: Ryan Hanley)

FIVE WAYS BARGAIN-HUNTING CAN BACKFIRE ON HOME BUYERS

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ADRIENNE ABBOTT, Cincinnati’s trusted name in Real Estate

Websitehttp://www.ToughMarketTV.com   |   EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  | Office: 513.554.4800
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241

Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Adrienne Abbott Real Estate Radio!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

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It’s natural to want to save money when you’re making a purchase as large as a home. You want to buy the best home in the best neighborhood at the best price, and you may think the only way to accomplish your goals is to look for bargains. So instead of hiring a real estate agent, you scour the market for FSBOs, short sales, foreclosures, or homes that have been on the Internet too long.

While you’re bargain-hunting, here are five things you should keep in mind:

 

Low-balling sellers doesn’t work.

They don’t waste time with low-ball offers that they find insulting. Just as you want the home you buy to appreciate in value, sellers purchased their homes as investments, too. They want to net as much as possible, because they took a financial risk and had the foresight to buy the home they chose.

This sense of entitlement — that homes should only be sold at a profit – may cause them to overprice their homes or be less willing to negotiate. You’ll feel the same way when it comes time for you to sell your home, so make your offer reasonably and respectfully. Show the comparables that led you to make the offer. Be open to compromise.

 

Other buyers are getting professional help.

Ninety percent of buyers use a real estate agent while you’re spinning your wheels driving around neighborhoods and calling FSBO sellers who aren’t home to take your call. Soon, you’ll notice that the homes you’re watching are going under contract with other buyers.

 

True bargains are rare.

Sometimes a distressed home will impact the prices of the other homes because they typically sell at a discount of 17 percent, according to the National Association of Realtors. The other sellers may discount their homes somewhat, but if they’re not in distress, don’t expect them to negotiate as if they are. A bank foreclosure or bank-approved short sale could take months to close.

If a home has been on the market for a long time without a price reduction, there’s usually a good reason. You have an unmotivated, unrealistic, or upside-down seller, any of which could waste your time without resulting in a purchase. Move on to a deal that you can actually make.

 

 

The home needs work.

Sometimes a home will be marketed “as is,” which suggests that it needs a lot of work. Or, a home may be well maintained, but it’s so out of date it looks like a vintage sit-com set. You could be looking at a money pit.

Are you willing to perform the work or pay someone else to do the work? Before you buy, get a home inspection and then get bids from contractors who can help you bring the home up to today’s standards. If the purchase price and repairs come to approximately the same price as an updated home in the same area, then go for it.

 

It’s not a bargain if it doesn’t suit your needs.

A home is a good buy only if it suits your family’s needs for space, features, comfort, and function. If you buy a home without enough bedrooms or baths, you’ll pay more in transaction costs to sell the home and buy another that’s more suitable. Choose wisely in the first place because it takes time to build equity. Your home should meet your needs for a long time.

 

Thanks for reading; and, as always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Adrienne Abbott-Real Estate Radio!” Sunday’s at 4 PM only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

 

(Contributor: Blanche Evans)

HOMEOWNER HAPPINESS AND HOW IT AFFECTS YOU

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ADRIENNE ABBOTT, Cincinnati’s trusted name in Real Estate

Websitehttp://www.ToughMarketTV.com   |   EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  | Office: 513.554.4800
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241

Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Adrienne Abbott Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

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Owning your own home can be one of the most exciting times of your life. But are you truly happy with your current situation? According to a recent survey by HomeAdvisor, there are a number of different factors that come into play that determine whether someone is happy with their current living situation or not.

 

Some of the key factors include:

 

Accessibility — Homeowners don’t want to spend hours having to get from one location to another. They want to be able to get to any important services, attractions and employment opportunities within the shortest amount of time possible. On average, Americans spend about 39 minutes commuting to work.

 

Community — People want a diverse place where they can live and work. They also want a neighborhood that is safe so they can raise their family and enjoy spending time outside. Roughly 70 percent of all Americans live in a community where they feel safe. That leaves 30 percent of all individuals living in a community where they don’t feel safe.

 

Dwelling — Homeowners want a place that is not only affordable, but also comfortable. You want something convenient where you can enjoy spending hours at a time relaxing and taking in your surroundings. About half of all homeowners have spent time renovating their homes to turn them into something they can enjoy for years to come.

With home prices climbing, you want to make sure you are doing everything you can to purchase one that you are going to be happy with. The last thing you want is to end up committing to a home and end up feeling miserable. Even though 62 percent of the population already own their own home, that doesn’t mean that they are happy. When you are happy with your purchase, you are going to take pride in your home and make sure it is taken care of at all times.

 

Is happiness that important?

 

Happiness matters more than most homeowners realize. It matters so much that the United Nations, Harvard and Gallup have devoted precious resources to better understand what makes homeowners happy. Homeowners should be the happiest where it matters the most, in the comfort of their own home.

Your home is where you form a lasting relationship with your loved ones, yourself and your interests. All of those relationships contribute to your own happiness and well-being. Creating a happy home will make you happy overall, thus contributing to a happier world for everyone.

 

Finding your happy place.

Finding the perfect location for your new home isn’t always as simple as you might think. To help you determine your happy spot, there are a few key questions you can ask yourself.

  • Where do you get your coffee in the morning?
  • What is your ideal mode of transportation to work?
  • What do you do when your neighborhood is having a block party?
  • What will your children be doing this summer?
  • What does your ideal home look like?
  • Just how spoiled are your pets?

 

Conclusion

You’re investing a lot of time and effort in your new home, so you want to make sure it’s one that you will enjoy for years to come. Investigate your different options and find out which ones work the best for you and your specific needs.

Thanks for reading; and, as always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Adrienne Abbott-Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” Sunday’s at 4 PM EDT only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

 

(Contributor: Andrea Davis)

 

SHARED EQUITY: HELPING FAMILY MEMBERS BUY THEIR HOUSE

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ADRIENNE ABBOTT, Cincinnati’s trusted name in Real Estate

Websitehttp://www.ToughMarketTV.com   |   EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  | Office: 513.554.4800
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241

Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Tough Market! Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

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Your son and daughter-in-law want to purchase their first house, but their income will not carry the mortgage. There are a number of ways you can help them out. This column will focus only on a concept known as “shared equity”.

This is an arrangement where you — as investors — own a portion of the property with your children. Under a shared equity arrangement, there generally are two separate entities. You (and your spouse, if applicable) would be considered the owner-investors, and your son and daughter-in-law would be considered the owner-occupants. The four of you would take title to the property. You could own fifty percent, for example, with your children owning the remaining fifty percent. Your children, as owner-occupants, would pay half of the monthly principal, interest, taxes and insurance, as well as half of the estimated fair market rental of the property. You, as owner-investors, would pay half of the monthly costs, would receive the rental income, but would also be able to get some tax benefits if the transaction is properly structured.

In today’s market conditions, where prices are clearly higher than many young couples can afford, shared equity may be the only way to permit our younger generation to get into the home ownership arena.

Here is a general outline of how shared equity works. Although there is no magic formula by which one takes title, often — especially when dealing with family — title is taken on a 50-50 split.

The owner-occupant and the owner-investor each pay 50% of the monthly mortgage costs and taxes. Both parties are entitled to deduct from their income taxes their share of the mortgage interest and the real estate taxes. The owner-occupant pays rent to the owner-investor.

In our example, because your children — as owner-occupants — will only own half of the house, they will have to pay 50 percent of the fair market rental to you as owner-investors. This rental is considered income to an owner-investor, and must be included in your tax return. The main advantage for the owner-investor is that you can depreciate 50% of the property. However, this depreciation is subject to the passive tax rules which Congress enacted with its sweeping tax reform legislation in 1986.

There are a number of legal requirements for qualifying for the shared equity program.

 

1. The owner-occupant must pay a fair market rental for the portion that he or she does not own.

Perhaps the best way to determine this fair market value is to ask a real estate agent to give you a statement in writing as to what they believe is the fair market rental of the property. With such a document in your files, you should be able to justify the rental if and when the IRS comes knocking at your door to challenge the shared equity concept. A Tax Court opinion has ruled that owner-occupants could pay a somewhat lower rent than fair market rental because the investor will not have any vacancy losses, and because the owner-investor will save the additional costs of hiring a property manager.

A safe harbor would be to deduct 15% from the fair market value, and then your children, as owner-occupants would pay half of that amount to you.

 

2. There must be an equity sharing agreement. This document, which must be in writing and signed prior to the purchase of the property, should spell out the terms and conditions between the owner-occupant and the owner-investor.

For example, when will this agreement terminate? Who has the right to buy out the other, and under what terms and conditions?

These very serious questions must be resolved, and it is strongly recommended that you do so now while you are still talking with your children. As harsh as it may sound, parents and children often get into major fights, and you do not want to wait until you start having problems in an effort to resolve these important questions.

 

3. One of the owners must actually occupy the property as his or her principal residence.

 

4. This is a requirement — and one that is often misunderstood — that the ownership interest in the property must be for more than 50 years. This does not mean that the shared equity contract has to run for more than 50 years. Indeed, most shared equity agreements run between three to seven years.

As long as you own the property outright (in “fee simple”), this satisfies the fourth legal requirement.

It is impossible in the space of this column to analyze all of the shared equity arrangements. However, it does have tremendous potential for such people as:

  • Parents in a high tax bracket who want to help their children with down-payment and closing costs.
  • Children in a high bracket who want to help retired parents purchase a home.
  • A friend who wants to lend money to a buyer to assist in a home purchase.
  • An investor interested in residential real estate investment who is looking for a solid, limited risk purchase.
  • Potential buyers with limited savings — but good income — who need a bigger house than they can currently afford.

 

In my opinion, the possibilities of shared equity are unlimited. But, as in every real estate transaction, it requires careful planning, a well-drafted written agreement, and a full understanding of the tax and financial considerations involved in such a transaction.

Anyone considering a shared equity agreement should evaluate the numbers carefully, based on the current tax laws in effect relating to real estate.

Tax and financial planning are, of course, important considerations in these transactions, but should not be the only factors. After all, these are your children, and you want to help them out as best you can.

 

Thanks for reading; and, as always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Tough Market-Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” Sunday’s at 4 PM EDT only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

 

(Contributor: Benny Kass)

IS A TINY HOME RIGHT FOR YOU?

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ADRIENNE ABBOTT-DAUGHERTY, Cincinnati’s trusted name in Real Estate

Websitehttp://www.ToughMarketTV.com   |   EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  | Office: 513.554.4800
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241

Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Tough Market! Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

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What used to be a head-scratching novelty is now a celebrated trend that shows no sign of slowing.

 

Yes, tiny homes are seemingly everywhere – on large swatches of land, rolling down the highway on a trailer, and on multiple TV shows (Tiny House Builders; Tiny House, Big Living; Tiny House Hunters – and those are just the ones on HGTV!).

 

Why all the fuss about tiny homes? While some expected them to be a passing fad, they have proven themselves to be a popular alternative to the rising prices of mega-houses!

 

The reasons for the popularity of tiny homes boil down to this: For some, the tiny house movement has become a way of life, adjusting to a smaller space and fewer possessions, with a goal of saving money and focusing on relationships and experiences.

Think you’re ready to chuck 90 percent of your stuff and live in dollhouse-sized accommodations?

 

Here are a few reasons why you might be:

 

You want to be unencumbered

Sick of your location? Drive your tiny house to a new one! If it’s been built on wheels or is able to be loaded onto some, you can take it anywhere you want – as long as it’s allowed.

Building codes in most municipalities set a minimum size for dwellings. Some tiny houses on wheels function as RVs, but most areas also ban full-time RV living outside of an RV park. This is the biggest obstacle for most people. You might be able to build a cottage as an accessory unit on a lot with a larger home or in a rural area with a liberal zoning code. Or, you might need to build it on wheels and keep it in an RV park. People should really know where they’re going to keep it before they build it.

 

Because you’re super organized

If you’re the type who ends up with piles of laundry and paper scattered throughout your place, a tiny home might not be the best option for you. Living in a small space requires you to rethink your entire relationship with stuff.

 

Because you want financial freedom

You may never get to the point where you can pay off a mortgage on a “traditional” home, but it’s pretty typical to own a tiny house outright, which can vary from $35,000 to $55,000 (and even more for a high-end custom built one).

 

Because the rat race makes you feel like, well, a rat

The trend is growing among those for whom “Keeping up with the Joneses” is a foreign concept. Working harder and longer just to pay the mortgage isn’t for everyone.

 

Because you want to save in more ways than one Less space means less upkeep, less maintenance, and less overhead. Imagine how much your electric bill will go down if you drop from 2,000+ square feet to a couple hundred. And you can lower your bills even more by incorporating green features and building/situating your home to make use of solar options.

 

Still sound like something for you? Here are a few tiny homes to get you inspired.

 


GASA
Lots of windows and creative décor can make a tiny home feel airy and elegant, not cramped and closed in.

 

There is no “typical” design for a tiny home. The shape, size, and style are all up to you.


Bide Home
Make it functional. Tall ceilings allow for extra storage. A built in creates a cozy eating nook and an island on wheels provides extra prep space that can be easily moved out of the way.

Smart design is key. This living room tucks a home office into the corner and places French doors across from the couch to flood the space with light.


Pinterest
A stylish approach and upscale features makes a tiny home look chic. A space-saving sliding door is on trend and multiple skylights and windows keep the kitchen light and bright.


POPSUGAR
Straight lines and multiple windows give this tiny home a modern look, while the outdoor patio extends the living space.


Tiny House For Us
It’s like a charming suburban home…only smaller!


Tiny House For Us
Loft bedrooms are standard for tiny homes because they are space savers. Just make sure you’re not claustrophobic…and that there is enough space to sit up. Slithering into bed every night won’t be fun.

 

Thanks for reading; and, as always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Tough Market-Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” Sunday’s at 4 PM EDT only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

WHY HOME BUYERS SHOULD HIRE A PROFESSIONAL

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ADRIENNE ABBOTT-DAUGHERTY, Cincinnati’s trusted name in Real Estate

Websitehttp://www.ToughMarketTV.com   |   EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  | Office: 513.554.4800
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241

Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Tough Market! Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

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Getting a purchase closed in today’s market is complex. The real estate market has changed greatly from only a few years ago. Buyers face many more hurdles including stricter financing, low housing inventory, higher mortgage rates, and rising prices.

To negotiate today’s challenges, you need a real estate sales professional to help you close the deal.

A good real estate professional understands current market conditions. He or she has house-by-house neighborhood experience and can help you obtain the right home at the best price and terms.

 

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Your agent can help you find a home quickly. Not only do real estate agents have access to the local multiple listing service, they also share knowledge of homes coming onto the market with their colleagues. Your real estate professional will tell others about your requirements for a home so they can also be on the lookout for you.

In fact, networking is one of the biggest industry advantages. Many homes are bought and sold without a sign ever going into the yard. But, for buyers to be shown the latest homes on the market, or to hear about homes about to come onto the market, there has to be a strong relationship between the buyer and the real estate professional.

If you want to be the buyer positioned to make first and best offers on the most desirable homes, make certain your agent knows you are committed. How do you show you’re serious? There are several ways.

Get prequalified with a lender. Share your financial records so you know exactly how much home you can buy. Your agent won’t go over your limit because it would be a waste of time to show you homes you can’t afford to buy.

Work with only one agent. You can do this by signing a buyer’s representation agreement and show your loyalty by telling other agents you may meet at open houses or socially that you are represented and give them your agent’s name.

Don’t shop for homes without your agent. If you want to look at open houses or builder homes, invite your agent to go along. If your agent can’t go, make sure you register your agent’s name with builder sales reps and open house sellers’ agents.

 

 

Be loyal. Real estate professionals work primarily on commission. If the deal of the century is about to come on the market, who do you think your agent will tell first – the buyer with five other agents or the buyer who is loyal? If you’re playing agents against each other thinking you’ll get people to work for free and that you’ll have your pick of homes to choose, you’re wrong. Agents talk, and they’ll find out they’re working for the same buyer. If you want great service, show appreciation, confidence, and commitment.

Once you find the house you want, the work really begins. You’ll have to navigate negotiations, loan approval, seller’s disclosures, inspections with environmental and structural reports, and so on. From helping you make a reasonable offer, to providing for the discovery and disclosure of material facts, your agent can help protect your interests.

Buyers and sellers are natural adversaries. Agents must be skilled negotiators and problem solvers, as well as anticipate problems before they happen. Pride, ignorance, or stubbornness can get in the way of a fair deal for both sides.

Your agent will share your risk, and will make sure you go into any home purchase with your eyes wide open. Take advantage of the greatest home-buying resource available — your own real estate agent.

As always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Tough Market-Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” Sunday’s at 4 PM EDT only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

SELLER’S ADVICE: SHOULD YOU GIVE SQUARE FOOTAGE?

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ADRIENNE DAUGHERTY, Cincinnati’s trusted name in Real Estate

Websitehttp://www.ToughMarketTV.com   |   EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  | Office: 513.554.4800
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241

Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Tough Market! Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

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The square footage of a home can work for or against you as a seller. My preference is to never give a potential buyer too much information about a home because it can backfire.

 

Buyers tend to think bigger is better, but your smaller home may actually feel more spacious than one that has a bigger footprint. Or your large home may actually be more livable than lavish square footage would suggest.

 

So how do you get the true character of your home across to buyers-by showing your living space to your advantage? Living space is defined as space that is roofed, enclosed and finished for human occupancy; heated and cooled; and directly accessible from another living space.

 

Tax authorities may typically measure from the exterior of the home, length times width. That’s one reason why square footage often doesn’t reflect the livability of a home or explain why the interior may seem much smaller than exterior square footage.

 

Living space measurements do not subtract the thickness of the exterior walls, insulation and drywall. Further, a lot of living space is simply unusable for actual living, such as empty space beneath stairwells, or the access space required around water heaters and other systems required by code.

 

So if square footage numbers don’t seem in your favor, talk to your real estate professional about ways to make what you have more attractive to buyers. Showcase your floorplan to advantage through videos, photos, staging and lighting. Bright, sunny spaces appear larger than dark closed spaces, so open the curtains and let the light in. Keep the lights on for showings.

 

Clear out all clutter. Clutter takes up valuable real estate space and a messy room is distracting to buyers that may look at your home. Remove and store excess furniture and belongings, so that each room functions well with a minimum of furniture and accessories. Stage the home for optimum traffic flow around uncrowded tables and chairs.

 

 

Help your real estate professional stage your home for all photos that will appear online. Take the computer off the dining room table. Clear off countertops and tabletops, make sure furniture and lamps are right-sized for each room, and that each room is represented as advertised.

 

What you don’t want to do is measure your home yourself. There is no standard way to measure a home — a laser or a measuring tape may yield different numbers for different people, which could open you to liability.

 

Last, provide third-party sources for square footage, such as a tax assessor or appraiser. Some may think it’s wise to put a disclaimer in your mandated seller’s disclosure that says the following: “All third-party measurements are approximate.”

 

Remember, the buyer for your home is interested in getting the most home for the money compared to other similar homes, but you can show them that what they actually want is a home that functions well.

 

You got questions? I got answers!

 

As always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Tough Market-Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” Sunday’s at 4 PM EDT only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

10 THINGS TO NEVER SAY TO A REAL ESTATE AGENT

 

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ADRIENNE DAUGHERTY, Cincinnati’s Real Estate Consultant

Websitehttp://www.ToughMarketTV.com   |   EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  | Office: 513.554.4800
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241

Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Tough Market! Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

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Real estate is serious business, and it can be easy to forget when we’re involved in a complicated and emotional financial transaction that the person we’re working with is just that…a person. An agent might not always show you when she’s feeling disrespected or offended, but you may pay for it—literally. Establishing a good relationship early on and maintaining it through honesty, open communication and mutual respect is key to a successful transaction. You can help ensure that happens by watching what you say.

 

1. That price is ridiculous.

If you’re dealing with a professional agent, especially one who has a good track record in the business, it’s fair to assume she’s done her homework on comparables and is recommending an offer price based on the local market and your financial situation. Most agents are going to expect some conversation to take place around pricing, but insisting on a price simply because it’s what you want to pay doesn’t typically play out well.

 

2. But Zillow said my house is worth $40,000 more than what you’re telling me.

Zillow has become an industry juggernaut. While their home pricing estimates, known as “Zestimates,” aim to inform buyers and sellers, they’ve been proven to be off by a whopping amount—somewhere between the 8% Zillow claims and upwards of 20%, 40%, even 61% depending on the house and the location, according to a recent L.A. Times report.

 

3. I know what my home is worth.

 

No. You don’t. Your estimation of your home’s worth may be based on neighborhood comps, but it’s probably also shadowed by your emotions or by what you need to make from the sale. It’s hard to separate out your personal connection. That’s why it’s important to let your Realtor be an impartial professional.

 

 

4. I have a perfect credit score.

Unless you’re part of the 0.5% of consumers who reach the 850 mark, it’s time to be real about your credit score and your financial ability to buy a home. Overvaluing your credit, your down payment, or any other aspect of your buying ability, is pointless. Everything is going to come out during the buying process anyway.

 

5. I’m not going to bother getting pre-approved.

 

To an agent, this can indicate that you’re not a serious buyer. Or that you don’t understand the process.

In tight markets, you’re at a disadvantage if you aren’t ready to pull the trigger right away when you find a house. You could very well lose out because another buyer was ready with their pre-approval and you were just getting in touch with your lender.

And,  an agent worth his or her salt won’t agree to invest countless hours showing homes to someone who isn’t approved in advance for a loan.

 

6. I have between $200,000 and $2,000,000 to spend with any number of bedrooms in any location.

 

Open-ended budgets and limitless expectations are great, but giving your agent a little more guidance can help her zero in on viable options. When you have no idea where or what you want to buy, most agents won’t embrace the idea of spending countless hours trying to narrow it down.

 

7. I’m not doing any repairs.

 

Sellers want to think their house is perfect, but inspections may show otherwise. Drawing a line before you even know what problems may exist can be frustrating for an agent. It’s her job to get you the best possible price, but unreasonable expectations make that more difficult.

 

 

8. You can cut your commission. I mean, you make a ton of money.

 

Assuming an agent will cut their commission—especially when they’ve been approached in a callous or sarcastic manner, isn’t the way to go about getting what you want. Besides, the best agents know their worth.

 

9. I’m not ready to buy…I just wanted to see a few homes.

 

People looooove having their time wasted don’t they? Especially busy, successful agents who could be out dealing with serious buyers instead of showing homes to someone who isn’t sure they’re even in the market.

The best real estate agents are busy for a reason. Their services are highly in demand and their time is valuable. It’s OK if you’re just looking around and aren’t sure whether or not you’re ready to take the leap; but if that’s the case, be upfront at the start; not after several showings.

 

10. Can you give me some advice about my house? I don’t want to hire an agent.

 

Most people wouldn’t approach a CPA to do their taxes without hiring him or expect a lawyer to write up a divorce agreement without paying, but real estate agents often yield questions from people looking for free advice. Most will answer a question or two, but there is a limit.

 

You got questions? I got answers!

 

As always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Tough Market-Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” Sunday’s at 4 PM EDT only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contributor: Jaymi Naciri

 

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT BUYING A NEW CONSTRUCTION HOME

Adrienne Daugherty55KRC LOGO

ADRIENNE DAUGHERTY, Cincinnati’s Real Estate Consultant

Websitehttp://www.ToughMarketTV.com   |   EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  | Office: 513.554.4800
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241

Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Buying a new home can be a truly exciting experience. Choosing your lot and floorplan, picking out all your fixtures, watching the progress from foundation to framing to finishes. Makes me want to run out and tour a model home right now! …Nah, just kiddin’ haha.

Through all the excitement, though, there are a few realities that may be surprising for those buying new for the first time.

 

1. You probably won’t be able to negotiate the price

 

New homes are not like resale, where there is the expectation of price negotiations back and forth. The price set by the builder is most likely the price you’re going to pay. The exceptions are when there are just a few homes left and when there is standing inventory that needs to be sold.

Look for builder inventory homes that have been on the market for 45 days or more, these are the homes in which a buyer might be able to get a good deal.

 

2. But you may be able get some upgrades at no cost

 

More typical in a new-home community is getting some upgrades thrown in—things like window coverings or nicer flooring such as Hardwood in lieu of Carpeting. Negotiating a few must-haves into your deal can help offset your costs. Some builders may also help with closing costs as an incentive to buy.

 

3. There might also be incentives to using the builder’s in-house lender

 

Many builders have an in-house or preferred lender they work with to provide financing for buyers. There may be advantages to using this lender—better terms or a rate that’s bought down. By law, the builder can’t make you use their lender, so if you feel pressured, be sure to discuss with your real estate agent and ask your agent for a referral as well.

 

4. Use a REALTOR®

 

Speaking of Realtors…you can use your agent to buy a new home, and, in fact, you should.

In general, builders’ model homes are staffed by agents who work directly for and represent the builder. A buyer also needs to have a real estate agent who represents them and looks after their best interests. Keep in mind that most builders will require that the real estate agent accompany and register the buyer on their first visit to the builder’s model home or community.

 


Curbed
5. Your home will not look like the decorated model

 

When you tour a model home, it’s decked out with pretty walls and floors and lighting and countertops. The furniture is to scale and the fabrics are custom and the pictures are hung perfectly. It’s pretty seductive. But the empty shell you buy won’t look like this if you go with all the standard configurations and finishes. Be realistic about what you want, what you need, what you can afford, and how that translates to what you are seeing. The salesperson can point out which of the items you love in the model come standard and which are pricey upgrades.

 

6. The price of the home as advertised is not what you’ll pay

 

Typically, it will take many tens of thousands of dollars in upgrades and options to get the home you buy to look like the model. This can be a rude awakening for buyers who are trying to stick to a strict budget. The good news is rolling some of those upgrades into the mortgage can make good financial sense.

 

Upgrading during the initial construction phase is generally cheaper than updating your home later on. For example, if you choose to upgrade from laminate flooring to hardwood, you’ll pay the difference in material costs—but you won’t necessarily have to pay extra for the installation itself, since your builder needs to install floors in the first place. The same goes for things like windows and bathroom features.

 

 

7. You’ll be dealing with construction noise and traffic for a while. Maybe even MONTHS!

 

The peaceful life you envision can be a reality, but probably not from the get-go. Depending on the community, it may take time to complete construction. Which means dealing with congestion and hassle for the time being. Amenities like pools, sport courts, and trails may also not be built out by the time you move in. Asking ahead of time about the construction schedule can help you manage expectations.

 

8. Not everything will work perfectly

 

In any house, there are bound to be issues. New homes are no different. Builder warranties will help.

Warranties for newly built homes generally offer limited coverage on workmanship and materials relating to various components of the home, such as windows, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), plumbing, and electrical systems for specific periods. Warranties also typically define how repairs will be made. The duration of coverage varies depending on the component of the house. Most warranties on new construction cover siding and stucco, doors and trim, and drywall and paint during the first year. Coverage for HVAC, plumbing, and electrical systems is generally two years. Some builders provide coverage for up to 10 years for “major structural defects.” But in any case, ALWAYS get a whole house inspection, even on new construction!

 

As always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Tough Market-Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” Sunday’s at 4 PM EDT only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contributor: Jaymi Naciri

HOME BUYERS: SEVEN INSIGHTS INTO CONFIDENT DECISION MAKING

Adrienne Daugherty55KRC LOGO

ADRIENNE DAUGHERTY, Cincinnati’s Real Estate Consultant

Websitehttp://www.ToughMarketTV.com   |   EmailAdrienneDaugherty1@gmail.com  | Office: 513.554.4800
Park Realtors, LLC 11427 Reed Hartman Hwy #405,  Cincinnati, OH 45241

Star of “Tough Market!” TV Show Pilot

Radio Talk Show Host “Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” on  iHeartRadio

Sundays at 4 pm Eastern Time (55KRC THE Talk Station!)

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Home-buying is multi-tasking on steroids. Are you up for the challenge?

On the surface, buying a home seems simple: find your dream home and buy it.

In reality, this seemingly-simple task requires buyers to make a continuous stream of under-pressure decisions, often concerning issues and consequences they do not fully understand. Instead of one task, buyers are faced with hundreds of tasks many of which must be decided on simultaneously, on very short deadlines. This makes decision-making a challenge, but it’s the knowledge gaps and “I’ve never thought about this before” perspectives revealed in smart home buying that add the real pressure.

 

At its best, purchasing real estate is an exhilarating race through a labyrinth of snap decisions ending with the purchase of real estate. At its worst, home buying can become a multi-tasking nightmare culminating in the purchase of the wrong property, in spending too much, or in no purchase at all.

 

To swing the outcome in your favor, one key task is choosing the “best fit” real estate professional to guide you through the home-buying process. This real estate expert will keep you fully informed, so that even snap decisions are solid choices you will thrive on.

 

Face the complexity of successful home buying head on and it will not overwhelm you.

 

Purchasing real estate involves making a series of decisions which combine to address the essentials of successful real estate ownership. The “I’ve never thought about that before” perspectives that challenge decision making, especially for first-time buyers, can be categorized by the specialized knowledge required.

 

Here are Seven Insights into Successful Multi-Tasking:

#1. Investment: What is the value-appreciation potential of the property?

Does it seem strange to think about resale value when you haven’t even purchased yet? This perspective is important since it reveals current value deficits. In addition, after paying off the mortgage (and many thousands in interest), and maintaining and improving the property over the years ahead, you’ll want to recover these costs and make a profit to finance the next phase of your life. Even a “forever home” should be purchased with investment in mind since the future is full of surprises. Location is key to resale value. The best strategy is to buy the least property in the best neighborhood you can afford.

 

#2. Lifestyle: Which lifestyle values should the chosen property reinforce?

Are you determined to spend your time, money, and effort on accumulating “stuff” and teaching your children to do the same? If so, square-footage, lots of storage, and a bedroom each may be essential. If your values go beyond materialism, the size of the building may not be as important as highly-functional interior design, the surrounding community, and local amenities and green spaces. Shop neighborhoods before you start looking at individual homes.

 

#3. Benefits: How do you expect ownership to benefit you and your family?

I’ve addressed investment and its links to your financial future in #1. How else do you expect the home and neighborhood to benefit your family? For instance, locating near select schools has taken priority over locating adjacent to work for many buyers, but make sure the school in question is not so over-populated that its standards are slipping. Compare the cost of alternatives schools to the premium that real estate in “star school” neighborhoods demands. If a private school or home schooling is intended, “star” amenities may take priority over neighborhood schools.

 

#4. Time Management: How should your real estate support income earning?

Jobs tend to be more plentiful in urban areas. Real estate prices are usually lower and appreciation slower further away from urban centers. The expense of commuting to work goes up the further away you live. Do the math to determine what you’ll net in salary after deducting the cost of commuting. Add a calculation of how many extra hours the distance will take from your family, interests, health, and fun. Only you can determine what this time is worth when you evaluate the value of buying a larger home further from city center.

 

#5. Property Management: How much time and money will maintaining and regularly modernizing your property require?

Gardening can be a great joy, but mowing a large lawn can be a great responsibility—and an expense if you pay someone else to mow. The larger the house, the higher the taxes, the bigger the roof, the more plumbing and wiring involved, more windows to decorate, more furniture to buy, and more space to heat and cool…. The costs attached to maintenance are annual, increasing expenses and should be considered when setting the budget for a purchase.

 

#6. Borrowing: How much will the cost of borrowing add to the overall cost of home ownership?

Mortgage interest and related costs are not the cost of real estate since not everyone needs a mortgage. These expenses relate to borrowing, but they can be large enough to make you house rich and cash poor. Financially stretching for a dream home, may be your choice knowing your earning power is on the rise.

 

#7. Backup: How will I find reliable, accurate, unbiased answers to my questions during the buying process?

GoogleTM should not be your “go-to” resource during home buying because it holds no liability if you get the wrong information or if you don’t know what you don’t know and should know about a topic. Settle on a real estate professional with the knowledge and experience relevant to the locations and type of real estate you are interested in. When you ask this local expert a question, they will know the complete answer or know how to get it. Real estate professionals understand that they carry fiduciary responsibilities to provide the right information at the right time, so their client (that’s you) can consistently make confident decisions to achieve your stated goals.

 

The more you understand the home-buying process before you start, the better prepared you’ll be for a multi-tasking decision-making marathon. The many small decisions about style of home, mortgage term, closing date, garbage and mail services, side of the street, distance to medical services and the firehall etc… will be manageable. You’ll be ready to confidently make significant decisions about which property, how much to spend, and which responsibilities to commit to in the offer to purchase.

 

Want more information? I’m a phone call away!

 

As always, thanks for listening to my Radio Show “Tough Market-Real Estate Radio Hour-LIVE!” Sunday’s at 4 PM EDT only on 55KRC, THE Talk Station!

 

Until next time.

 

-Adrienne

 

 

 

 

 

Contributor: PJ Wade