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Increase your homes value for $0
By Luther
December 19, 2016

Unless your home shows at its very best, it can cost you hundreds, even thousands, of dollars during its sale.  You may also face the prospect of a prolonged listing period or even an expired listing.  Fortunately, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get your home ready for sale.  There are things such as plumbing or painting, but there are several things that you can do for no money that will help make your home ready for sale.

INSIDE YOUR HOME:

  1. Make rooms appear larger by packing away extra furniture.  Even rent a storage unit.
  2. Clean out closets so everything appears orderly.  Most people demand neatness in a home they intend to buy even if their own homes are a mess.
  3. Keep blinds and draperies open and your windows clean to let as much natural light in as possible.
  4. Make sure your kitchen is spotless.  Rid clutter from countertops and organize your drawers and cabinets.  Buyers will look inside.
  5. Clean the refrigerator. Remove pictures, artwork and magnets.
  6. Make sure bathrooms are spotless.  Hang your best towels and repair all fixtures.
  7. Clean the floors as much as possible.  Wax wood floors and shampoo carpets.  Bleach the grout in tile floors.
  8. Dust everything in sight.  Don’t leave dead insects in the windowsills and light fixtures.
  9. Prune all plants and get rid of ones that are dying.
  10. Take down offensive posters or artwork from your teen’s rooms and put away all toys in younger children’s rooms.
  11. Make sure your utility room is clean.  Don’t let laundry lie on the floors.

OUTSIDE YOUR HOME:

  1. Clean the garage thoroughly.
  2. Mow the lawn and keep it well watered.  Edge the sidewalks.
  3. Weed any flowerbeds and trim trees and shrubs.  Uproot dead flowers, plants and shrubs.
  4. Sweep all sidewalks, patios and porches.
  5. Put away all toys, bikes, skateboards, etc.
  6. Repair any broken sprinkler heads.
  7. Make sure that pets are kept out of the way and pet areas are clean and odor free.
  8. Water the lawn only very early in the morning or in the evening.  Put ammonia sulfate on your lawn to green it up.
  9. Clean the roof and gutters.
  10. Repair a broken or sagging fence.  Make sure that the fence gate opens and closes without having to use excess force.
  11. Fix the doorbell if it’s broken and make sure that the front door is free of debris and dirt.  Make sure it opens and closes with ease.
  12. Move firewood off the ground and away from the house.  Otherwise, this area may be noted as conducive to termites or fire ants during an inspection.
  13. Park cars down the street during showings.

These simple steps can do wonders to enhance your home in the eyes of buyers and maximize the profit of your home sale.

Choose your Agent wisely. Any agent will show enthusiasm and will want to list your house for sale but choose your agent based upon;

  1. Experience at listing and marketing houses for sale.
  2. Ability to use technology to market your house world wide to buyers 24/7.
  3. Reviewing with you a comprehensive Marketing Analysis of home sales in your area.
  4. Ability to offer a written detailed 30-DAY MARKETING PLAN that will get your house sold at the highest possible price.

Working with a full time professional real estate agent is a must.  Choose your agent by asking questions of him or her.  Find out how knowledgeable they are about houses currently for sale in your price range and also of houses that have recently sold. Can your agent recommend a good lender that has the reputation of excellent customerservice and low rates to assist your new buyer with financing?  A good listing agent can get your house sold quickly at TOP DOLLAR and help you find a new home.

I have the knowledge and the resources to sell your property for TOP DOLLAR.

For prompt, courteous, professional service, call Luther Benson:

Direct:      1-719-310-2404

Visit my web site at:   www.lutherbenson.com

Have questions, need advice you can count on or just want to discuss this further?

Don’t waste any more time; pick up the phone and call me now!  I’m here to help!

I appreciate you as a client and a friend. I appreciate your business, your loyalty, trust and your referrals. It is my goal to provide the very best counsel, advice and service possible for your real estate needs. If I may ever be of assistance to you, a relative, friend or co-worker please don’t hesitate to call me. I look forward to the opportunity to serve you.™

How to raise the price of your home by thousands for $0
By Luther
March 29, 2013

Click the photo to watch this week's video blog.

3.8% Transfer Tax
By Luther
December 10, 2012

Below is a brief article dispelling some of the rumors that have been going around on the internet of a 3.8% transfer tax on all real estate sales. This is NOT a blanket real estate sales tax and will affect very few people. Even though I am not a big fan of the Health Care bill it passed, so I feel that it is important to dispel rumors of a real estate sales tax which could slow the real estate market at a time it is beginning to improve.

Now that the Supreme Court has upheld the health care legislation, all of its major provisions remain in effect,
including the new tax that was designed to affect upper income taxpayers. The 3.8% tax is imposed ONLY on those with more than $200,000 of Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) ($250,000 on a joint return). The tax applies to investment
income, defined as interest, dividends, capital gains and net rents
. These items are all included in an individual's AGI. A formula will determine what portion, if any, of these types of investment income would be subject to the tax.

The tax is NOT a transfer tax on real estate sales and similar transactions. Not long after the tax was enacted,
erroneous and misleading documents went viral on the Internet and created a great deal of misunderstanding.

The new tax does NOT eliminate the benefits of the $250,000/$500,000 exclusion on the sale of a principal
residence. Thus, ONLY that portion of a gain above those thresholds is included in AGI and could be subject to the tax.

The amount of tax will vary from individual to individual because the elements that comprise AGI differ from taxpayer to
taxpayer.

As always be sure to check with your tax advisor to see the tax may or may not affect you.

Luther Benson - Broker/Owner

Access Real Estate Professionals Inc.

22 Years of Experience

For a Free List of Distressed Homes go to:

http://www.freedistressedlistings.com

For a list of all available homes on the MLS go to:

http://www.Homes4SaleCo.com

Learn the 7 costly mistakes buyers and sellers make on my web site:

http://www.lutherbenson.com

Email lutherbenson@comcast.net

Direct 719-528-2406

Toll Free 877-528-2406

Cell 719-310-2404

CPV, CRS

The highest form of compliment I can receive is your trust by referring me to your family,
friends and co-workers. I promise to provide exceptional service, respect and
care to you or anyone you may refer.

Avoid These Mistakes when selling and buying
By Luther
April 27, 2012

Unlike the experience of buying a home for the first time,
when you are looking to move up and already own a home, there are certain
factors that you must consider.  It’s very important you evaluate these factors before you list your home for sale.

Not only is there the issue of financing to consider, but also the fact that you have to sell your present
home at exactly the right time in order to avoid the financial burden of owning two homes or, just as bad, having no place to live during the gap between closings.

Most of us dream of improving our lifestyle and moving up to a larger home. The problem is that there’s sometimes a discrepancy between our hearts and our bank accounts.  You drive by a home that you fall in love with only to find that it has already sold or the asking price is way too high.  Most homeowners get caught in this hit or miss strategy of house hunting when there is a much easier way to go about the process. Your first move is to meet with a competent agent and discuss the sale of your house and necessary improvements to make.  How much you will net from your sale will determine what you can purchase.  Look at a few homes to get a general idea of availability so when you are ready to buy,
you can do so quickly.

If you want to get the best price for the home you are already selling, there are certain things you must do to
enhance its salability.  The repairs and alterations don’t have to be expensive.  Even
making minor investments can come back to you ten-fold in the price you are able to realize.  Making minor
improvements must be done before the house is put on the market in order to attain top dollar for your home.

You should plan to sell before you buy.  This way you will not find yourself at a disadvantage when seated at the negotiating table feeling pressure to sell at a below-market price because you have to meet a purchase deadline.  If you have already sold your home, you can buy a new one with no strings attached.  If you do get a tempting offer on your home but have not made significant headway on finding a new home, you might want to put in a
contingency clause that gives you reasonable time to find a home to buy.  If the market is slow and you find your home is not selling as quickly as you anticipated, another option could be to rent
out your home and put it on the market at a later date.  This can be particularly effective if you are
selling a smaller start-up home.  You’ll have to investigate the tax requirements if you choose this latter option.  Better still, find a way to eliminate the situation altogether by getting your agent to guarantee the sale of your present home.

Be sure to get pre-approved for a loan before the process of buying and selling begins.  There is never a cost or obligation involved with getting pre-approved for a loan and it will give you a significant
advantage when you put an offer on the home you want to purchase.  A pre-approved buyer will always look better
to a seller than one who does not yet have financial backing.

Your biggest decision when buying and selling is deciding which to do first.  Look for Guaranteed Trade-Up programs with your real estate agent.  This means that if you find a new home before your current home is sold, the agent will buy your home from you in order to make your move hassle free.

With two transactions to coordinate together and with all the people involved in buying and selling homes, the
chances of mix-ups and miscommunication increase dramatically.  To avoid this be sure to work as closely as
possible with your real estate agent.

Luther Benson - Broker/Owner

Access Real Estate Professionals Inc.

22 Years of Experience

For a Free List of Distressed Homes go to:

http://www.freedistressedlistings.com

For a list of all available homes on the
MLS go to:

http://www.Homes4SaleCo.com

Learn the 7 costly mistakes buyers and
sellers make on my web site:

http://www.lutherbenson.com

Email: lutherbenson@comcast.net

Direct 719-528-2406

Toll Free 877-528-2406

Cell 719-310-2404

CPV, CRS

The highest form of compliment I can receive is your trust by
referring me to your family, friends and co-workers. I promise to provide
exceptional service, respect and care to you or anyone you may refer.

Tips for selling your home in Colorado Springs
By Luther
May 9, 2013

Tips for selling your home in Colorado Springs

  1. Understand why you are selling your home.  Your motivation to sell is the determining factor as to how you will approach the sale of your home.  It will affect everything from what you set your asking price at to how much time, money and effort you are willing to invest in order to prepare your home for sale.
  2. Keep the reasons for selling your home to yourself.  By keeping this information personal and private, you will not give the buyer negotiating leverage.  If you are asked why you have decided to sell, simply respond that your housing needs have changed.
  3. Before setting a price, consult with a good listing agent.  As a seller, you will want to get a selling price as close to the list price as possible.  If you start out by pricing too high, you run the risk of not being taken seriously by buyers and having your house sit on the market for a long time.  If you price the home too low, you could be costing yourself thousands of dollars.
  4. Do some home shopping for yourself.  The best way to learn about your competition is to review a competitive market analysis with a good listing agent. Take note not only of the listing prices, but the prices that other comparable homes are actually selling at.
  5. Get an appraisal.  A good appraisal can be a huge benefit in marketing your home.  Getting an appraisal is a good way to let prospective buyers know that your home can be financed.  A word of caution: an appraisal is not a guarantee that your house will sell for that price, and you also may not like the appraisal value you are quoted.
  6. Understand what tax assessments mean.  Some people think that tax assessments are a way of evaluating a home.  The difficulty here is that the assessments are based on a number of criteria that may not be related to property values, so they may not necessarily reflect your home’s true value.
  7. Find a good real estate agent.  Upwards of three quarters of all home sellers say they would not work again with the agent who listed their home.  Usually this is a result of  poor marketing and communication on the part of the agent.  Take the time to locate the agent who is  going to best represent your needs during the transaction.
  8. Ensure that you have room to negotiate.  Before settling on an asking price, make sure you leave yourself enough room to bargain.  Remember, a buyer is more likely to make a full priced offer on a home that is priced right before making a low offer on a home that is priced too high.
  9. Make the appearance of your home count.  Appearance is so critical that you would be unwise to ignore this fact when selling your home.  The look and feel of a home will generate greater emotional response from prospective buyers, more so than any other factor.
  10. Invite the honest opinions of others.  The biggest mistake you can make is to rely solely on your own judgment.  Don’t be shy about seeking the opinions of others.  You must be objective about your home’s  strong and weak points.  Work with a  real estate agent who will give you honest and unbiased opinions about  what should be done to make your home more marketable.
  11. Clean everything, no matter how seemingly insignificant it may seem.  Potential buyers are looking for excuses not to buy your home, and it would be a shame that they went another direction because of a tiny chip in a bathroom counter or some dirty dishes in the kitchen sink.
  12.  Allow potential buyers to visualize themselves in your home.  The last thing you want prospective buyers to think when viewing your home is that they may be intruding in someone else’s life.  Avoid clutter such as too many knickknacks, clothing lying around, or dirty dishes in the sink.  Decorate in neutral colors like white or beige and place a few carefully chosen items to add some warmth or character.
  13. Get rid of all offensive odors.  Odd smells like traces of food, pets, or cigarette smoke can kill a sale quickly.  If potential buyers see a dog or notice you smoking a cigarette or cigar, they’ll start seeing stains or smelling odors, even if they aren’t there.  Don’t leave any clues.
  14. Disclose everything.  Smart sellers are proactive in disclosing all known defects to their buyers in writing.  This will reduce liability and prevent costly lawsuits later on.
  15. The more buyer prospects, the better.  Work closely with your real estate agent to maximize your marketing.  Having several potential buyers can only drive the price of a home up.
  16. Keep your emotions in check during showings and negotiations.  Let go of the emotion you have invested in your home.  Use a businesslike manner and be detached.  This will give you an edge over someone who remains emotionally attached to the property.
  17. Learn why your buyer is motivated to buy.  The better you know your buyer, the more leverage you have to negotiate.  As a rule, buyers are looking to purchase the best affordable property for the least amount of money.   If you  know the buyer needs to move in quickly, this can help you get a better price.
  18. Find out what the buyer can really afford.  Work with buyers who are pre-approved for a home loan so you know exactly how much they are going to finance and how much will be spent as a down payment.
  19. Find out when the buyer would like to close.  Knowledge of a buyer’s deadline for completing negotiations again creates an advantage for you to get the most possible money.
  20. Never sign a contract on your next home until you sell your current one.  Beware of closing on your new home while you’re still making mortgage payments on your current one.  You may find yourself stuck with two mortgage payments.
  21. Moving out before you sell can also put you at a disadvantage.  Empty homes can give the feel of being abandoned or neglected.  Buyers who know you already have another home may feel they have an advantage to negotiate a lower price.
  22. Deadlines create a serious disadvantage.  Don’t try to sell by a certain date.  This adds unnecessary pressure to sell and can cost you thousands of dollars off the asking price
  23. Don’t take a low offer personally.  Invariably the initial offer is below both what you were expecting and what they buyer is actually willing to pay.  Don’t get upset.  Evaluate the offer objectively.  This is merely a starting point for negotiations.
  24. Turn that low offer around.  You can counter a low offer with one that is just under your original asking price.  This lets the buyer know that you don’t take their first offer seriously, but at the same time are going to be flexible.
  25. Find out if the buyer is qualified.  If you feel that an offer is too low, find out if the buyer is qualified to carry a loan equal to your asking price.
  26. Be sure the contract is complete.  To avoid problems, see to it that all terms, costs and responsibilities are spelled out in the contract of sale.  Include everything.  Leave nothing out.  This will eliminate complications later on.
  27. Resist the temptation to deviate from the
         contract.
      Do not risk the collapse of the sale because of a single, seemingly insignificant deviation from the agreed upon contract.

Thanks for reading Tips for selling your home in Colorado Springs

Call us for a free no pressure market review of your home. 

Luther Benson - Broker/Owner

Access Real Estate Professionals Inc.

22 Years of Experience

For a Free List of Distressed Homes go to:

http://www.freedistressedlistings.com

For a list of all available homes on the
MLS go to:

http://www.Homes4SaleCo.com

Learn the 7 costly mistakes buyers and
sellers make on my web site:

http://www.lutherbenson.com

Email: lutherbenson@comcast.net

Direct 719-528-2406

Toll Free 877-528-2406

Cell 719-310-2404

CPV, CRS

Ref: Tips for selling your home in Colorado Springs

The highest form of compliment I can receive is your trust by
referring me to your family, friends and co-workers. I promise to provide
exceptional service, respect and care to you or anyone you may refer.