Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley - CENTURY 21 Cobb Real Estate



Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 1/14/2018

When youíre preparing your home for the market, your main goal is to make it as desirable as possible to potential buyers. Not only will this gain more attraction from interested parties, but it can also help you out in a bidding war by making your home stand out among the rest and therefore increasing the final sale value.

Many of the ways to increase the desirability and curb appeal of your home involve costly home improvements and upgrades. However, there are some simple solutions that can make an impact and might just be enough to tip the buyer in favor of your home.

Today, weíre talking about the value of marketing a spotless, freshly cleaned home. The benefits are many. But, among them are the chance of increasing your sale value, attracting more potential buyers, and demonstrating to them that youíre the type of homeowner who has cared for their home.

Read on for some of the most important cleaning tips to help you along the process of selling your home.

1. Decluttering helps in more ways than one

When youíre ready to sell your home, the last thing you want to be thinking about is finding places for all of your belongings that youíve accumulated over the years. People interested in buying your home wonít want to visit a house filled with your personal belongings, as it will make it harder for them to imagine their own decorating style in the house.

To make this whole process easier, itís a good idea to declutter and pack away things that you wonít necessarily need until you move into your new home. Youíll also be doing yourself a favor later by packing boxes now that wonít have to be repacked when you move to your new home.

2. Mold and mildew

Bathrooms and kitchens are especially vulnerable to these two culprits that can be a huge turn-off for potential buyers. Youíre going to want to carefully inspect these rooms for signs of mold and mildew and eliminate them. Non-streak and bleach-based cleaners are ideal as they can help your glass and tiles shine like new.

Remember to make sure these are clean before you have real estate photos taken or your listing and before having any potential buyers over to show your home.

3. Deep dusting

You know those corners of your home that you always think, ďoh well, no one will ever see back there anywayĒ? Well, people interested in buying your home will likely want to look in those corners and might be off-put by piles of dust.

If you have a hard time seeing because parts of your home are dark, set up some portable work lights while youíre cleaning to ensure youíre getting the job done.

Finally, donít forget to clean the tops of ceiling fan blades and behind your kitchen appliances, where few seldom go.

4. Gutters are a giveaway

Clean gutters are a sign that a homeowner cares for the long-term maintenance of their home. So, if you havenít been quite keeping up with gutter cleaning, now is the time to do it.

5. Pressure washing can be worth the cost

If thereís one thing thatís worth spending money on for cleaning an older home, itís usually power washing. Vinyl siding is low-maintenance, easy to install, and relatively inexpensive. But, it does get dirty from time to time.

Hiring a power washing service or renting a pressure washer can be a good way to make the exterior of your home look like new again.





Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 10/29/2017

Looking to sell a home for the first time? Ultimately, a first-time home seller must be able to identify a strong offer for his or her residence. With extensive real estate insights, a first-time home seller may be better equipped than others to accept a strong offer and accelerate the home selling cycle.

Identifying a strong offer for a home can be quick and easy Ė even for a first-time home seller.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help a first-time home seller differentiate between a strong offer and a poor one.

1. Analyze the Housing Market

The housing market can be complex, particularly for a first-time home seller. Fortunately, many free, easy-to-access resources are available to help a home seller learn about the ins and outs of the housing sector so he or she can plan accordingly.

For example, a home seller can check the prices of homes available in his or her area via a simple online search. This home seller can even find out how long a particular house has been available, whether the price of a home has been reduced over time and much more.

With in-depth knowledge of the real estate market, a home seller can study how his or her residence stacks up against the competition. Then, this home seller can establish a competitive price for his or her home, increasing the likelihood that he or she will receive a number of strong offers.

2. Understand Your Home Both Inside and Out

A home appraisal is a must for a first-time or experienced home seller, and perhaps it is easy to understand why.

During a home appraisal, a property inspector will take a close look at a house's interior and exterior. This inspector will provide a report at the appraisal's completion that highlights a house's strengths and weaknesses too.

For a home seller, an appraisal offers a valuable learning opportunity. It enables a home seller to gain deep insights into a home's condition that he or she may struggle to obtain elsewhere. That way, a home seller can complete assorted home repairs before listing a residence and boost his or her chances of receiving multiple offers that exceed a house's initial asking price.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

A first-time home seller should meet with a real estate agent and discuss the differences between a strong offer and a poor one.

Thanks to a real estate agent, a home seller can seamlessly navigate the entire property selling journey as well.

Typically, a real estate agent will help a home seller establish a fair price for a residence from the get-go. This housing market professional also can offer helpful tips throughout the home selling journey to ensure a home seller can get the best possible results.

Don't leave anything to chance as you prepare to list a residence for the first time. Instead, take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and a first-time home seller should have no trouble distinguishing between a strong offer and a subpar proposal.





Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 6/4/2017

Want to boost the value of your home? Doing so may prove to be expensive if you're not careful. Fortunately, we're happy to help you revamp your home on a budget, and ultimately, ensure you can maximize your residence's value when you add it to the real estate market. Here are three tips for home sellers who want to increase the value of their residences without breaking their budgets: 1. Power Wash the Exterior. Dust, dirt and grime can accumulate along your home's siding. As such, your home's messy exterior is unlikely to help your residence generate interest in a highly competitive real estate market. On the other hand, power washing your home's siding can be done quickly and may enhance your residence's appearance instantly. You may be able to rent a pressure washer from a home improvement retailer, enabling you to complete this task on your own over the course of a few hours. Or, you can hire a licensed and bonded contractor to power wash your home's exterior. Regardless of which option you choose, however, you're unlikely to have to worry about a hefty bill. 2. Enhance the Kitchen Cabinets. Are your kitchen cabinets old, dirty and ugly? Lucky for you, there are many quick, easy ways to transform your bland kitchen cabinets into glamorous ones that can make your home more attractive to homebuyers. For instance, updating the hardware of your kitchen cabinets enables you to give the cabinets a sleek, modern look. Also, you can clean off the cabinets and add a new coat of paint to revamp their appearance. When it comes to improving the appearance of your kitchen cabinets, you may not need to replace the cabinets altogether. Instead, use these simple yet effective improvements to enhance the appearance of your kitchen cabinets without delay. 3. Remove the Carpets. Carpets will wear down over an extended period of time and may become an eyesore in your home. Thankfully, you may be able to remove the carpets and expose beautiful hardwood floor. To remove the carpets, you'll need to be patient. Typically, removing staples from carpets is paramount and may take you several hours to complete. But those who do so may find an exceptional hardwood floor that can help revamp the appearance of your house. A hardwood floor that remains beneath a carpet may be in great shape after a carpet is pulled up. Conversely, you may need to restore the floor Ė something that usually is much more affordable than installing new carpets in your home. Remember, home improvement projects may require time and patience, but home sellers who perform these tasks effectively can boost the value of their houses. And if you're ever uncertain about whether a home improvement task will help you bolster your home's value, you can always consult with your real estate agent for professional assistance, too. Take advantage of the aforementioned tips to discover the best ways to bolster your home's value. By doing so, you can enhance the appearance of your home without breaking your budget.





Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 5/14/2017

When you think of buying or selling a house, the first thing that comes to mind may not be the legal aspects associated with the process. You may want to reconsider this rather boring part of the process as an important one. Hiring a lawyer can help both buyers and sellers to get through many hurdles that buying a home can present. 


The Contracts


There will be many negotiations and a lot of back and forth throughout the process of buying a home. Everything thatís involved with buying a home needs a contract for it to be legally binding. A real estate attorney will negotiate on your behalf and be sure that the contracts adhere to all state and local laws. The lawyer will also help you to address issues that may affect the future of the property such as botched inspections, liens against the home, and other items that could affect you as the home buyer. 


Title Search


Real estate attorneys will perform what is called a title search. This allows them to see if there are any outstanding liens or judgements against the house. This title search will also make sure that the seller has the right to actually sell the property thatís being sold. An attorney can do all of this much quicker than the average person since they have working relationships with title companies.


Transfer Of Property


If a property is being transferred through a corporation, trust, or partnership, things can get complicated. Itís good to have an attorney who is used to working with these complex situations and understands the legal boundaries within the state or municipality   that the property is in.


If You Choose Not To Have A Real Estate Attorney


Many times, a real estate attorney isnít required to buy a property. It is advisable to have one, however. Without an attorney you increase your chances of problems arising in the future. You run the risk of:


  • Being sued for failure to disclose information
  • An improper property transaction takes place
  • You could miss relevant facts about the property
  • Failing to file the correct documents at both the state an local levels
  • Deeds are not transferred
  • Building permits werenít correctly filed


The Takeaway


Having a real estate lawyer on your side is important due to the complex nature of property transactions. While some states require that an attorney be present throughout your property transaction, many states do not have this stipulation. You are smart to hire a competent real estate attorney to protect your own interests as either a buyer or a seller.





Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 4/16/2017

If you're considering putting your house on the market, the job of helping you find a qualified buyer is an important one. The real estate agent you choose to market your home, schedule appointments, and provide you with day-to-day guidance will play a crucial role in the outcome of your sale.

In addition to picking an agent who has a successful track record of selling houses similar to yours, their overall attitude, communication style, and energy level can provide you with valuable insights into whether they're up to the challenge.

Here are three of the top reasons that a positive attitude is an indispensable quality in a real estate agent.

  1. When prospective buyers and agents tour your home, they will be influenced by several factors. While their main focus will be on the look and feel of your home, their opinions will also be swayed by your agent's presentation style. Your real estate professional should have a knack for helping prospects focus on the desirable aspects of a home, while downplaying its negative features. Although issues and potential problems with a property usually need to be acknowledged, a resourceful real estate agent will make sure the problem is kept in its proper perspective, rather than blown out of proportion. They'll also do their best to suggest cost-effective solutions. To the extent that it's possible and practical, a good agent will help prospective buyers imagine how much they'd enjoy moving into the house, customizing it to their personal preferences, and making the space their own. People will quickly pick up on the enthusiasm and attitude of your real estate agent, and will be consciously and unconsciously influenced by their verbal and nonverbal messages. Most, if not all, buyers will be quick to detect everything from authenticity and sincerity to indifference and lethargy in an agent. These traits should also be obvious to you when you're interviewing agents during the selection process.
  2. An optimistic, results-oriented real estate agent will tend to be more resourceful, proactive, and solution-oriented that one who focuses more on problems than solutions.
  3. Both enthusiasm and negativity are contagious, so your agent's attitude will have a direct impact on your own outlook. Since your responsibility as the seller is to keep your home and property looking its best at all times, discouragement and a loss of optimism can easily spill over into noticeable details like home cleanliness and staging.

Choosing a great real estate agent can potentially translate into a higher sale price and a shorter period of time that your home will be on the market. Since thousands of dollars are at stake, it makes good financial sense to pick an agent who possesses the necessary people skills, the relevant knowledge, and the professional expertise to bring you the best possible return on the sale of your property.