Who doesn’t want to sell their home for its maximum value? Still, many people list and show their home before taking any action to improve its presentation. If getting a strong return on your investment is something you desire, it’s time to start thinking about doing some quick remodeling work on the interior of your home. This can make a big difference in the price it ultimately sells for.
Tip #1: Clean up Your Act!
Mistake No. 1 when selling anything, whether it’s a bike, car, or house, is to not take the time to give it a good cleaning. It might seem like a given that a person selling his or her home would get it into top shape, but anyone who has ever gone house hunting knows that isn’t always true. You should invest money in having your home professionally cleaned from top to bottom (including the windows, walls, and ceiling). Make sure you don’t forget to make critical areas like bedroom closets, bathrooms, and primary living quarters well organized and clutter-free to make the best impression. Cleaning up will also make it easier to move out when the time comes, too!
Tip #2: Be a Little Superficial
Although potential house buyers should be focused on the things they can’t easily change, like location and physical dimensions, it’s human nature to be influenced one way or the other by the little details. While it’s expensive to remodel an entire kitchen or upgrade the heating services, taking the time to add a fresh coat of paint, invest in new fixtures and pulls, or even replace window curtains can make an impression that adds substantial value to your property. In this regard, the investing of a few hundred dollars and a little elbow grease can amount to thousands more on your closing price.
Tip #3: Put on a Show
It’s known in the real estate industry as “staging,” and it’s a proven method for getting top money on the sale of your home. The idea is to display your house favorably the shopper, and it can involve anything from rearranging the furniture and upgrading the lighting in rooms to putting out fresh flowers and hanging art on the walls. Staging is something that can be done on your own, but it’s often worth speaking to a professional who understands what works best with buyers in your market and location.
In a tough real estate market that has both the seller and the buyer focused on getting maximum value, it’s a big mistake to not take the time to do whatever you can to show your house in the most flattering light. While a complete interior remodel isn’t always in the cards (nor will it offer the best return on investment), these simple steps are sure to help your house fetch a fair price.
Author Bio: Carly is a freelance writer who loves animals, good heating services, and traveling. She loves how blogging allows her to share her writing with a large audience on the internet.
By Alan Noblitt
With the real estate market unstable in many areas of the U.S. and inventories still high, how is a person to sell their property? Most buyers can’t get loans to take advantage of the rock-bottom interest rates, so the banks and other mortgage lenders are lesser players than they were a few years ago. While there is no perfect solution for all scenarios, owner financing is an option that everyone should understand and consider using when selling a property.
Basically, owner financing is having you, the seller of the property, carry the financing for the buyer of the property. You hold the real estate note (also called a mortgage note) and become the bank. Then, after the transaction closes, you can either hold on to the mortgage note or sell it to a mortgage buyer that you trust.
Using Owner Financing
Offering owner financing and carrying the real estate note is an option that you can use for most property types (residential, commercial, and land). It is not appropriate if an underlying loan nearly matches the note amount or if there is minimal equity in the property.
The perfect real estate note, whether you plan on selling it or keeping it, is one where the sales price approximately matches the property value, the payer put in a down payment of at least 10% (in this market of declining prices, 15-20% is even better), the payer’s credit is 680 or above, and the terms are satisfactory . For the latter item, this means a good interest rate, either no balloon payment or one that is at least three years out, proper documentation, lender’s title policy, etc. While there will still be a discount if you sell the note, that discount would be minimal.
Most notes are lacking at least some of the elements above, so your best option is often to only sell part of the note. For example, if the note has a 30-year term, you would just sell the next five years or ten years worth of payments. This is called a partial purchase, or simply a partial. With a partial, you get less money upfront than if you were to sell the whole note, but you can look forward to a future income stream and net a lot more money in total. Often note buyers will be open to buying the rest of the note (at your option) after receiving payments for just a year.
So, if you’ve just sold a property using owner financing, you have three options:
1/ Hold on to the mortgage note and collect the monthly payments. Of course, this means that you are responsible for managing the collections, being certain that property taxes are being paid, ensuring that fire insurance is current, etc.
2/ Sell all of the note to a mortgage note buyer. Again, if the main elements of the property or note are not strong, the discount may be bigger than you would like.
3/ Sell part of the note, as described in the paragraph above. This allows you to get some cash in hand while not taking such a discount hit.
Selling Your Note
If you are considering selling your note, make sure that you’re working with an experienced and reputable mortgage buyer. In addition to asking lots of questions and checking your gut instincts:
- Google him/her to learn about what they have done and whether there are any negatives listed about them.
- Check www.ripoffreport.com to see if they are mentioned there and what the complaint was about, and check their grade with the local Better Business Bureau.
- If the property is in California and you’re working with a broker, make sure the person has a current real estate broker’s license. If not, they’re operating illegally, so move on quickly.
In summary, although owner financing is a tool that you can use in any real estate market it is especially useful in times like these, when lenders have pulled back. Owner financing has been around for centuries and has been frequently used for real estate over the past 30 years.
Alan Noblitt is the owner of Seascape Capital Inc., which buys and brokers real estate notes and business notes. He may be reached at 1-800-634-4697, or visit the website at www.seascapecapital.com .