Archive for the ‘Homes for sale’ Category

Pictures + Words

| January 24th, 2012 | 6 Comments »

Cara in the HouseThe first thing most people do when looking for homes online is read the description. Then they usually thumb through the pictures and a part of them subconsciously makes sure the pictures reflect what the description says. At least that’s what I do. The point I’m trying to make here is that it’s important to have a great (yet accurate) description and great (yet accurate photos).

Of course there are the obvious buzz words that usually try to make the home sound better than it is. And I know because I’m guilty of some of them. For example, “charming”  most likely means the home is tiny. I’m sorry but that’s the honest truth. A 2500-3500 square foot home will almost never be referred to as charming. Also too many exclamation points may mean the agent is trying hard to make this home something its not. “Easy to maintain yard!!!!!!” might simply mean there’s a yard. And there’s some grass in that yard. And maybe a few plants. And my favorite “great floorplan” might mean the agent can no longer think of anything else to say about the home.  Oh and don’t forget “custom” which sometimes means it’s a bit of an odd feature but it was something the previous owner had done to the house and it worked for them therefore its custom.

However, when a great home comes along you will read the completely amazing description and it will match the completely amazing pictures and when you go visit you will probably see a completely amazing home. On the flip side if the pictures are terrible and the description matches, you will probably go there and not be one bit surprised that the home isn’t one bit completely amazing. And that’s ok because you were prepared.

The bottom line is that if the home is great, the pictures and description should be great. If the home is distressed or falling apart, it should be very obvious from the pictures and description (and if there is only one picture be very skeptical!) And for all the homes in between, the agent should definitely highlight the good areas but make sure the photos and description are accurate so the buyer isn’t disappointed when they visit the home in person.

Here is an actual description of a home (and no its not the home in the picture above). Despite it being pretty gloomy, you have to give the agent credit for honesty and believe it or not, this home had an offer in 5 days!

This home has been vacant for over two years without heat due to a faulty furnace. Broken water lines have caused damage to walls, floors, and appliances. Some roof repair is needed. Also some siding Damage. Home is sold “As-is”.

If you are looking to sell, I promise to do a great job marketing your home!

 

What can you expect in twenty twelve?

| January 5th, 2012 | 4 Comments »

Cara in the HouseWell I’m sure there are a lot of things you can expect this year but since I’m in charge let’s narrow it down to just real estate. Will home prices keep falling? Will interest rates go back up? Will home sales rise?  I just shook my magic 8 ball and here is what it says: things are looking up.

Yes, prices have been steadily falling but the general consensus for those of us in the biz is that they may decline a bit more but most likely they will stay about the same. Foreclosures and short sales will continue to drive prices down a bit which is good and bad, depending on who you are. If you are looking to buy this year, good for you! If this is the year you plan to sell, maybe not so great. But interest rates are once again at historic lows so it will bring buyers out of the woodwork, making home sales rise and hopefully decreasing the amount of time homes will sit on the market.

Should you buy or wait? My advice is buy. If you already own a home, buy an investment home. If you are renting, take advantage of the low interest rates…you will probably save money.  Will waiting another year ensure that prices will drop even more? They might, but what if interest rates go back up? Then it won’t matter. Take advantage of low rates and pretty low home prices. As long as you don’t have to turn around and sell your home in the immediate future, it’s a smart choice.

As for me, my goal is once again to do better than I did the year before, continue to make Cara in the House a recognizable brand and improve the real estate market, one happy client at a time!

 

Pools are cool

| September 30th, 2011 | 1 Comment »

It is not very often that you see a home with a pool here in the Seattle area. I for one am a huge fan of pools for many reasons. You may have your own reasons and you may also find yourself agreeing with some of mine. Pools are cool and here’s why:

Pools make people happy. It’s very hard to be mad, sad or in a foul mood while frolicking in a pool. Yes, it can happen but it’s not very likely.

Pools typically take the place of grass. Pool=less mowing and yard work. If you absolutely love yard work you can do one of two things: come to my house or plant some potted plants around the pool.

Pools are healthy. Swimming is one of the best exercises you can do and it’s usually safe for anyone, even those of you with injuries.

Pools make you cool. If you buy a house with a pool, you will be surprised how many friends you suddenly have.

Pools help you get tan. When you are tan you feel better about yourself. When you feel better about yourself you are more likely to be more successful in life. I bet Donald Trump owns a pool or two.

If this doesn’t make you want to run out and buy a house with a pool I have one last thing that may work. What if you could buy a HUGE house that has been completely updated with a large deck and nice views of the mountains in a great Kirkland location with a pool that has been meticulously maintained for $450,000?  

Check it out at: www.FinnHillLifestyle.com

If this sounds intriguing to you or you think it may peek the curiosity of someone you know, give me a call!

10 things you didn’t know about Duvall

| May 16th, 2011 | 4 Comments »

Duval Home for Sale

In honor of my new listing in Duvall, here’s another top ten list brought to you by Cara in the House. Drum roll please…

10. If you’re trying to eat healthier, Duvall is definitely the place for you. There are no fast food restaurants within Duvall city limits. However, there is a Subway if you simply must get food in a hurry.

9. If you are concerned about safety you will be glad to know that potato guns and silly string have been banned from their famous “Duvall Days” festival. Phew!

8. The center of present-day town was located on a hillside homesteaded by Francis and James Duvall, loggers who arrived in 1871. Too bad it wasn’t settled by the actor Robert Duvall as that would’ve been way more dramatic and possibly made into a movie. Nonetheless, it’s still important to know a city’s history.

7. Duvall is actually much closer than you think. It’s roughly 8 miles to Redmond or Target, whichever is more important to you.

6. According to the Duvall Chamber of Commerce, it is one of the safest cities in King County (probably in large part because of #9 above).

5. Duvall has a very strong community feel. Case in point: the Duvall Firefighter’s Pancake Breakfast (June 5th if you want to check it out).

4. Worried about your kids spending too much time indoors playing video games? Duvall is host to many outdoor festivities such as the art walk, Farmer’s Market, movies in the park, Country Livin’ Festival, 5K/10K runs and of course the Snoqualmie Valley Trail for all your biking and hiking needs.

3. Even though it has a small town feel, there are 2 Starbucks in Duvall so you can rest assured knowing your grande, half caf, no whip, 3 pump, white chocolate, extra hot mocha is never out of reach.

2. Gosh darnit, there are some nice folks in Duvall. I should know, I was one of them. We lived (and still own) a home in Duvall and can honestly say it’s a very friendly town.

1. Whether you’re coming or going, the drive to and from Duvall is always beautiful. If you’re looking to come to Duvall to stay, you must check out my new listing: Cara in the House Duvall listing