Posted In:Real Estate Archives - Pligg


3 Things to Absolutely Avoid Doing When Selling a House

July 17, 2017 - By 

If being a first time home buyer is an exciting first step to building a life, being a first time home seller is a new and stressful event you might have never expected.

Selling a house involves a lot of stress and considerations. Because of that, it’s easy to make small mistakes.

But even small mistakes can add up. And some of them can stop you from ever selling your house for what it’s worth.

The sooner your house is sold, the sooner you can focus on moving into your new house and starting your new life.

That means you absolutely cannot afford to delay. Every decision needs to be the right one.

So if you’re putting your house on the market, you need to remember these tips.

Don’t Mess Up Your Presentation

If your focus is selling a house fast, that means you should do everything you can to entice future buyers of your home.

Presentation is absolutely essential to making a sale. People don’t want to buy a house if during the tour they see it as beat up, filled with old furniture, and foul smelling.

And though you may think some of the clutter in your kitchen shows that your house is lived in, the human mind is more simple.

When you’re trying to sell your house, remember to make it look and smell perfect.

That means moving old furniture into the garage, showing your house’s storage potential to buyers, and using scents like vanilla and citrus to make people happy the moment they set foot in your house.

Don’t Get Killed on Commission

If you’re selling your house for $200,000, you probably want the full $200,000 for it.

But the average real estate broker will make that difficult with the high commission rates that have become standard in the industry.

With the average 6 percent rate given to brokers, the sale of a house for $200,000 will net you a less-than-impressive $188,000.

Look for companies that will buy your house or help you sell without demanding high commission or fees.

Organizations like Global Citizens HQ provide a platform that connects home sellers and investment property buyers without demanding a commission fee.

Don’t Celebrate Selling a House Until It’s Over

When your house is under contract, it’s easy to celebrate having made a sale right away.

Unfortunately, being under contract doesn’t mean you’re going to close.

Although 75% of homes under contract make it to closing, that still means a quarter of all houses under contract are not closed upon in that deal.

There are a number of reasons for this. Bank issues, problems with your timeline, or property issues that are out of your hands can all torpedo your deal.

This doesn’t mean you’re going back to square one. Often times these disputes can be resolved over time. But celebrating prematurely can leave you unprepared for the coming weeks or months in your home.

So keep your head on straight and remember: it ain’t over ’till it’s over.



A Complete Guide for First Time Home Buyers

June 28, 2017 - By 
couple with keys

Taking the plunge to buy a new home is one of the biggest decisions you’ll ever make in life. Of course, it’s a hectic process, but those who are financially organized and prepared will get through it more easily.

Before buying a home, it’s important to determine your long term goals and see how the ownership of a home fits into those goals.

Experts usually advise first-time buyers to find a home when they’re ready to settle down and need at a place to live for at least five years. Plus, it helps to be financially ready when making this move.

If you’re unsure about the specifics of buying a first-time house, here is a simple home buyers guide to help with that.

1. Financial Readiness Is Important

Before house hunting, find out how much a lender will be willing to give you to purchase your first home. Some factors that will affect your mortgage include job history, monthly income, and current debts.

Also, you need to clarify how much you can afford when applying for a mortgage. The lender will require you to have a good credit score and a history of making timely bill payments.

Typically, getting pre-approved for a loan is important before placing an offer on a potential home.

2. Finding a Home

First, identify the location where you would like to live. Checking the prices of comparable homes in that particular area helps to get an idea of the potential monthly mortgage payments.

Consider getting the help of a real estate agent to help with the search, especially if you don’t much about the area. It’s not advisable to walk into an open house without an agent. You should look for a house that you can add value to. This will boost your equity.

If the house meets those big requirements, such as size and location, it’s never advisable to reject it due to a few physical flaws that can be fixed over time.

3. Home Inspection

When you finally have a few potential options, enlist the help of a home inspector to check the plumbing, flooring, roofing, walls, and basement of the home. Some homes might appear flawless but have several problems that a professional inspection will help to identify.

The overall safety, quality, and condition of a home are important. An inspection will help to know the possible repairs that a house needs if you settle for it. In some cases, it can give you a reason not to buy the home.

If the home needs repairs, a buyer can use this as a bargaining edge to get a discounted price or ask the seller to make the repairs.

4. Making an Offer and Closing

At this point, a professional real estate agent will help to determine the amount you should offer for the new house. The seller can accept or issue a counter-offer. Don’t be afraid to haggle with the seller to get a price you think it’s reasonable for the house.

Remember to factor in the closing costs (roughly 2 to 5 percent of the home price), immediate repairs, and commuting costs. The closing process involves signing a lot of paperwork, and a real estate agent serves as a home buyers guide to help you understand all the relevant details.

Getting a home appraisal and private mortgage insurance might also be necessary.

Home Buyers Guide – The Bottom Line

Buying a home can be an intimidating process for first-time homebuyers who are unsure about their options. As long as you have reasonable debts, a good credit score, and a solid job history, there are different conventional FHA VA loans you can qualify for.

Sometimes all it takes to get a new home is a preparedness and adequate due diligence. Calculate your debt-to-income ratio and factor in the down payment to determine how much you can afford to pay upfront every month.

When you’re ready, compare mortgage rates from different lenders, get pre-approved, and hit the market to find your new home.


5 Things You Need to Know Before Buying A New House

June 27, 2017 - By 
Buying a house

Buying a home is often one of the biggest and most important purchases someone will make in their life.

That’s why it is imperative to do as much research as possible before buying.

Here are 5 things that will help any potential home buyer to understand this monumental purchase.

1) Ask Yourself: Is Buying Right for You?

While buying a house might seem like one of life’s major stepping stones, it is by no means a requirement.

There are many benefits to owning a home. There is the financial investment, the potential for being cheaper than renting, and the stability of payments.

But there are cons as well. It’s a huge, long-term commitment with not a lot of flexibility.

A homeowner can expect to pay a lot in interest, repairs, maintenance, and renovations.

How important is mobility to you? Does buying make sense financially? Will you be able to afford the extra expenses?

Understand the pros and cons, evaluate your personal priorities, and then make the decision on whether to buy or not.

2) Learn Everything You Can

If you decide that buying is the right choice, it’s time to do your research.

First, you have to find a location that meets all your needs (present and future).

Once you find a house that you love, it’s time to do some digging.

Find out how long it’s been on the market, the house’s sales history, copies of bills (think taxes, insurance, etc), how long previous owners lived there, and any other relevant information you can think of.

You should know all about the house itself, but also about how the buying process works. There are numerous resources to help you understand the complicated process of buying a home.

With a purchase this big, you can never know too much.

3) Understand Your Financials

Buying a home is a huge investment.

You need to understand what you can afford, how much you have saved, what sorts of loans you need, and what interest rates you could face.

To get the best mortgage rates you should have good credit and a reliable income.

Keep in mind that providing a down payment can reduce your mortgage payments and decrease your interest rate.

Get used to creating and living on a budget before you commit to a mortgage and homeownership.

4) Think in the Long Term

Understanding your financials and your priorities should extend into the future, not just your current situation.

Do you plan on starting a family? How much other debt do you have to think about? Do you have job security? Is this house the house you will want in 10 years?

For a long-term commitment such as buying a house, it takes a long-term understanding of your priorities.

5) Use a Realtor

Obviously, this whole process can get confusing and overwhelming.

There are many real estate companies that can provide you with advice and guidance.

These companies and realtors can help in a myriad of ways.

They can:

  • Find potential homes
  • Have knowledge of certain areas
  • Negotiate contracts
  • Give guidance and advice
  • Understand market conditions
  • Handle paperwork
  • Answer your questions

Bottom Line

Buying a home is exciting, nerve-wracking, and overwhelming all at once.

Hopefully, some of these tips will help you in your process of becoming a homeowner.



Here’s Why Your Real Estate Closing Could Be Delayed

March 22, 2017 - By 
under contract

Don’t pop the celebratory champagne yet. You may think you’ve sold your house and it’s time to start packing. However, only 75% of houses that are under contract make it to actual closing. Why is this? And

Why is this? And what does under contract mean?

Simply put, if the house is under contract, that means the buyer and the seller are under a binding contract with each other and committed to the transaction under the conditions listed in the contract.

However, when those conditions are not met, the contract falls apart and may not make it to closing. This is incredibly frustrating for everybody involved. Particularly because so many first time sellers or buyers may think that once the offer is accepted, the deal is done, everything is official. This is far from the case.

This is incredibly frustrating for everybody involved. Particularly because so many first time sellers or buyers may think that once the offer is accepted, the deal is done, everything is official. This is far from the case.

This is far from the case.

Here are 3 of the most common things that can delay your closing, even when under contract.

Bank Appraisal

This is one of the most common (and certainly one of the most frustrating) delays for everybody involved.

The buyer and the seller work hard and battle back-and-forth. After a certain amount of tug-of-war, they agree on a price. Everything is wonderful, right? Wrong.

The bank steps in and does their appraisal, and decides that the house needs thousands of dollars in repairs before they can agree the house is worth the figure that you worked so hard to arrive at.

Sadly, there is almost nothing you can do. All you can do is work with a realtor who will stay in constant communication, and make sure the bank appraisal is done in a timely fashion, so any issues can be addressed.

Unrealistic Timelines

There is some unfortunate irony here. If you try to close your house too quickly, you may delay the process in a big way.

This can often happen with some of your more motivated buyers or sellers. Maybe somebody needs to move quickly because they landed a new job, or they’re having a baby, or maybe there’s a family illness and they need to relocate. In any case, they need to close and they need to do it in 30 days.

To properly close a deal, you really need 45 to 60 days. Trying to do it in less time (say 30 days) is possible, but not realistic enough to count on. It can lead to sloppy work, or poor communication.

Instrument Survey Discrepancies

Again. This is massively frustrating. Everything looks great, and then a survey is performed on the property, and you realize that your garden is, technically speaking, encroaching into your neighbor’s property. This is bad.

These issues can’t be solved until the included parties sign an affidavit to indicate the consent and understanding of the dispute or encroachments. This takes time… Time that you would rather spend living in your new home.

As you can see, a lot of these problems come from out of nowhere and it’s hard to predict them. In most cases, you can’t predict them. But, what you can do is work with an experienced realtor who knows how to properly budget, time, and set realistic expectations. Assuming a storm is coming is the best way to prepare for one.


Rent vs. Buy a Home: How to Know Which is Best for You

March 8, 2017 - By 
Home loan repayment calculator

The thought of moving into a home is bound to be exciting.

However, you may be unsure whether to take out a mortgage or rent a property, and that’s understandable. Both options are a big personal and financial commitment.

And, each option will have different advantages and disadvantages, so it is important you review them carefully to make an informed decision.

The Advantages of a Mortgage

The biggest benefit of taking out a mortgage is the fact you will own the property. That means you can design and decorate it any way you choose.

It may also be worth buying your own home if you plan to remain in the property for five years or more. By staying in the home for a lengthy time, you will are more likely to recoup the transaction costs at a future date.

It also is important to note you will be required to put down a deposit on the property, with many banks requesting a minimum deposit of 20%.

So, if you have considerable savings in the bank or the means to save a 20% deposit, you could be an ideal candidate for a mortgage.

If you are lucky enough to find a mortgage with a low-interest rate, you will decrease the amount of money you will have to repay on the loan, so it could be a worthy investment.

If you would like to learn more about a property’s mortgage rates, we recommend using a home loan repayment calculator to estimate your minimum monthly repayments and the amount of interest you will need to pay.

However, if you choose to rent, those monthly payments will go straight to the landlord instead. They will likely use the money to pay the mortgage on the property. So how can it be better to rent?

The Advantages of Renting

After reading about the advantages of a mortgage, you may have decided whether purchasing a property is the right financial path for you.

However, it is important to note that there are many benefits to renting, too.

Buying a mortgage can be expensive. Not only will you be tied to minimum monthly repayments, but you will also be required to put down a deposit on the property.

Renting can be a more affordable alternative to a mortgage, as people with limited funding can move into a property without the lengthy financial commitment.

It may also be worth renting a property if you are unsure about your current employment situation.

If you are currently fearing redundancy or believe you may soon be parting ways with the company, stop. Right now might not be the best time to embark on a big financial commitment like home buying.

Also, if you are currently experiencing a life transition, such as a divorce, it could be a wise move to initially rent a property over buying a new home.


There are many pros for renting or buying a property. The decision will be determined by your personal and financial circumstances, as well as your own risk tolerance.

Just ensure you are 100% confident in your decision before you sign on any dotted line.


Looking to Sell Your House Fast? 6 Things to do First

February 9, 2017 - By 
how to sell a house fast

Selling your home can take ages. Sellers can expect to show the home to at least 20 potential buyers before the offers start coming in, and even then it’s not a done deal.

That’s why lots of people look to sell their home quick. You’re busy enough as it is without trying to juggle tons of viewings.

So how can you speed up the selling process? We’ve got a few great tips!

Get Cleaning

The cleanliness of your home during viewings is crucial. If your home is cluttered or dirty, it will give viewers a negative impression.

If your house is dirty or cluttered, it can actually knock thousands of dollars off of its market value. This means you’ll be waiting longer for an offer you’ll accept.

Minimize the Personal Touches

You may think that having family photos, children’s drawings or other personal decorations will make your home seem more attractive to families. Wouldn’t buyers want to know the home was great for your family?

In actuality, very personal decorations make buyers less interested. They want to imagine themselves in the home while they are viewing it. Seeing pictures of another family breaks this illusion.

Paint It Like a Show Home

Repaint the rooms in your home to be more neutral tones. This makes sure that buyers are focused on the actual rooms, rather than the walls.

Plus, you won’t have to worry about color choices turning off buyers.

A bit of paint also goes a long way when it comes to sprucing up doorframes and runners. Pay special attention to your front door. It will be everyone’s first impression.

Clear Out The Furniture

If your furniture is oversized, or you simply have too much of it, it can make your space seem much smaller.

Reducing the amount of furniture in each room during your viewings can help your home sell faster.

Show Off Your Storage

Resist the urge to hide your clutter away when potential buyers come for a viewing. Buyers are going to be interested in the storage space available.

This means you need to clean and organize all your closets so they are presentable.

Don’t Forget Scent

The way your home smells can have a huge effect on what buyers think of your home.

Make sure that you don’t cook anything that smells too strong before a viewing — no tuna!

The smell of cleaning products is okay, but to really entice buyers you want it to smell homey. Try baking cookies, or lighting a scented candle while you prepare for the viewing.

Get Landscaping

It’s not just the inside of your home that matters.

Your front yard will be the first thing that buyers see of your home. If they aren’t impressed,  they will already be starting the viewing on a negative note.

So make sure that the outside of your home sparkles!

Wrapping Up

These tips will help you get your home sold faster.

Looking to sell without all the hassle? Good news: we buy houses, Houston!

Get your cash offer today and see how quickly you can sell!