Jill Finkelstein - Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Town and Country Real Estate



Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 8/27/2017

Ready to sell your house? Ultimately, you should conduct a home appraisal before you add your residence to the housing market, and for good reason.

A home appraisal enables you to better understand what your home is worth. Plus, an expert home appraiser will be able to offer comprehensive insights into your house's strengths and weaknesses so you can prioritize assorted home improvement projects accordingly.

Preparing your home for an appraisal may prove to be exceedingly valuable. If you allocate time and resources to get your house ready for an appraisal, you can increase your chances of getting favorable results during the appraisal itself.

What does it take to prep your house for an appraisal? Here are three tips to ensure you can do just that.

1. Consider a Home Appraiser's Perspective.

A home appraiser has an eye for detail, one that helps this professional understand whether a house is a viable long-term investment. Meanwhile, a home seller who steps into a property appraiser's shoes may be better equipped than others to enhance his or her residence.

For example, a home seller should evaluate a house's interior and exterior prior to an appraisal. And if you notice chipped paint on a home's walls, cracked shingles on a home's exterior or other cosmetic issues, you should address these problems immediately.

Even minor cosmetic issues can negatively affect a home's value. However, a home seller who goes above and beyond the call of duty to correct these problems may be able to improve his or her house's appearance before a home appraisal.

2. Conduct Plenty of Housing Market Research.

How does your residence stack up against the competition? Learn about the local housing market, and you can find out what you'll need to do to differentiate your residence from similar properties.

An home seller should learn about the prices of recently sold residences as well as homes that are currently available. That way, you can set realistic expectations for your home appraisal.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent.

A home appraisal can be a stressful experience, especially for a first-time home seller. Lucky for you, real estate agents are available to help you streamline the home appraisal process.

Typically, a real estate agent will guide you along the home selling process. He or she can connect you with qualified home appraisers in your area and ensure you can find a home appraiser who will provide honest, unbiased feedback about your residence.

A real estate agent also will help you maximize the value of your house. This housing market professional will ensure you can set a fair price for your residence and market your home to the right groups of homebuyers. He or she will even set up home showings and open houses and negotiate with homebuyers on your behalf to further simplify the home selling process.

When it comes to getting a home appraisal, there is no need to worry. Use the aforementioned tips, and you can plan ahead for a home appraisal.




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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 8/20/2017

If you're getting ready to put your home on the market, the thought of organizing, cleaning, and arranging it may seem like an overwhelming project!

Knowing where to begin and how much money to spend on home staging and decorating are among the many questions that may be flooding your mind, right now.

The key to success is to make as much of an impact as possible, without spending more money than necessary.

One way to avoid "spinning your wheels" when it comes to maximizing the appearance of your home is to work with an experienced real estate agent. A good agent will quickly notice aspects of your home that need attention and advise you on the most cost-effective ways to improve its marketability. If they've shown dozens (or more) houses in their career, they'll be very familiar with all the things that attract buyers, as well as what repels them.

Although everyone has different tastes and expectations, many house hunters are attracted to gleaming hardwood floors, energy efficient windows, and stainless steel appliances. While it may not be cost effective to have new floors, appliances, and windows installed to sell your house faster, you can make the best possible impression by making sure the windows are crystal clear, hardwood floors are polished, and appliances are clean and shiny.

Since many house hunters pay close attention to the kitchen, it's especially important to win their approval on appearance and cleanliness. Because food is prepared and often consumed in the kitchen, it's going to be one of the more challenging rooms to keep clean -- especially if you have children. However, if a prospective buyer is wavering between two houses for sale, you can be reasonably sure that the one with the clean kitchen and bathrooms will be their preferred choice.

There are a lot of other ways you can make your kitchen appealing to buyers, too. By minimizing clutter on counter tops and displaying fresh flowers and a colorful bowl of fruit, you can make your kitchen look much more inviting. Prospective buyers will also respond favorably to appealing fragrances, such as freshly baked bread, cookies, cinnamon buns, or coffee. Clean windows, attractive curtains, and plenty of natural light will also add to the ambiance of your kitchen.

The ideal reaction from potential buyers touring your home would be something to the effect of "I can imagine us preparing dinner, entertaining guests, and sitting around the breakfast table in this house!" Setting the table so that it looks like the family is just about to sit down for a meal together is one way to help convey that image. The encouraging news is that when someone expresses sincere appreciation for the comforts and features of your home, there's a good chance they'll find a place for it on their short list of possibilities!





Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 1/1/2017

For home sellers, revamping a kitchen can help transform an ordinary house into an exceptional home. In fact, a high-quality kitchen may make a world of difference for a prospective homebuyer who is considering multiple properties. So what does it take to transform your home's kitchen into an asset that can improve the value and quality of your entire home? Here are three kitchen improvement tips that every home seller needs to know: 1. Plan Ahead. Spend some time planning out how you want your kitchen to look. By doing so, you'll be able to map out your kitchen, decide where new appliances like a refrigerator and stove should go and work toward creating an awe-inspiring kitchen. To plan for your future kitchen, you'll want to consider your current kitchen, too. Your current kitchen might not be perfect, but you should try to keep things in place that you enjoy and get rid of things you don't. 2. Focus on Quality Over Appearance. A sleek appliance won't necessarily prove to be the best appliance. However, a top-rated appliance likely will serve as a viable option in just about any kitchen. Remember, homebuyers frequently search for value, particularly when it comes to a residence's kitchen. As such, you'll want to equip your kitchen with first-rate appliances, especially if you plan to include these appliances as part of a home sale. Ultimately, state-of-the-art appliances could serve you well. And even though you may wind up paying more for high-end appliances, these items could help you receive better offers for your residence. 3. Use Lighting to Your Advantage. Your kitchen should function as a bright, inviting space. Meanwhile, with the right lighting in place, you'll be able to show homebuyers that your residence's kitchen can provide a wonderful spot for family dinners, special events and much more. Ambient lighting such as flush-mounted ceiling lamps and wall sconces can help your kitchen make a distinct impression on homebuyers. Furthermore, task lighting such as under-cabinet lighting offers a perfect mix of form and function, as it can illuminate a particular area of your kitchen and looks great day after day. Don't be afraid to consider a variety of lighting options as you look to reinvent your kitchen. With the right lighting in your kitchen, you'll be able to effectively illuminate this space. Of course, when it comes to revamping your residence's kitchen, your real estate agent may be able to help out as well. This real estate professional can offer suggestions and recommendations and enable you to find the best ways to enhance your kitchen without breaking your budget. Kitchen improvements are paramount for home sellers who want to make their residences more attractive to homebuyers. And home sellers who are committed to accelerating their chances of a fast sale can work toward bolstering the quality and appearance of any kitchen thanks in part to the aforementioned tips. Begin your kitchen improvements today, and you'll be able to increase your chances of generating significant interest in your home.





Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 10/30/2016

What does it take to generate interest in your home from the right homebuyers at the right time? Marketing is paramount, and using all of the marketing tools at your disposal will make it easier for any home seller to connect with prospective homebuyers consistently. Today, many high-quality marketing tools are readily available to home sellers, including: 1. Social Media Facebook and other social networks now empower home sellers to share details about their residences with homebuyers from around the world. Furthermore, social media is free and easy to use, making it a powerful tool to add to your home selling arsenal. Social media, of course, only ranks as an effective marketing tool if you understand how to leverage it properly. For instance, you'll want to include high-resolution photos of your home with any social media content. You also will want to respond to homebuyers' questions quickly as these queries are posted on social networks, as this may help your home stand out in a crowded real estate market. 2. Virtual Tours Imagine what it would be like if a homebuyer could take a walk through your home even if he or she were many miles away. Thanks to virtual tours, home sellers are able to offer homebuyers a distinct home showing experience, one that is sure to make a long-lasting impression. Before you set up a virtual tour, be sure to consult with a real estate agent. This professional will be able to help you stage your home properly and ensure it looks great to any prospective homebuyer during a virtual home showing. 3. Email Updates Work with your real estate agent to ensure your home is included in any email blasts that he or she sends out. By doing so, you'll be able to maximize your marketing reach and ensure that many homebuyers can learn about your residence immediately. Any email notification should include relevant information for recipients. Therefore, you should ensure that information about your home is included only in email blasts that go to homebuyers who are likely to be interested in your residence. For example, an email blast that is sent to luxury homebuyers should not include information about a tiny house that is now available, as this residence is unlikely to generate significant interest. On the other hand, highlighting your two-bedroom house in an email update sent to first-time homebuyers and small families may be ideal. By doing so, you may improve your home's chances of garnering substantial attention from homebuyers without delay. The home selling process continues to evolve, and thanks to best-in-class technologies, home sellers possess advanced tools they can use to showcase their residences at all times. Discover the benefits of first-rate technologies and be sure to use them as part of your home marketing efforts. With these tools, you'll be better equipped to accentuate the positives of your residence to homebuyers globally and boost your chances of obtaining multiple competitive offers for your house as well.





Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 6/26/2016

Candles can make a home look inviting, cozy and warm. They can also give a glow to many people’s skin tones. Candles come in many sizes, shapes and scents. Burning of candles during a showing can make the home feel warm and inviting making the buyer feel relaxed and calm. Try to pick out colors like maroon (cinnamon) orange (pumpkin) these scents are soothing and relaxing scents and will help make the potential sellers feel like home. The placing of the candles is very important. The best places to put them are in the bathroom, bedroom, kitchen table, window sills, and fireplace mantel. If you have a fireplace, lighting a fire is a sure way to give that room a warm and welcoming feeling. Everybody loves a fireplace and your buyers will too. Bake something delicious smelling. The Real Estate experts swear by the just baked smell when showing a home. It makes your potential buyers feel right at home. Things like Apple pie; chocolate chip cookies or fresh baked bread all will create that warm and inviting feeling. Family photos in the home make your home feel like a house full of love. Potential buyers who see photos of a family having fun, and enjoying life in their home will create a sense of a home that has a lot of memories and love. Bottom line, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere can help you sell your home.