Archive for the ‘Preparing to Sell’ Category

How to Take Care of Your Moth Problem in 5 Ways

Sunday, August 30th, 2020
Clothes moth problem
Take care of your moth problem in these five ways.

I don’t know about you, but the first thing that comes to mind when you say “moth problem” is not an algebraic equation. It’s that nasty smell of mothballs. Yes? But what options do you as a homeowner have when clothes moths find their way into your stored items and munch holes in them?

This is an important question at this time of year. Fall is just around the corner. And we’ll be storing our summer wardrobes to don our fall sweaters and leather jackets. Will you find holes in your winter woolens? Is there a way to prevent holes from being munched into your comforters and down pillows? Yes!

Clothes moths are notorious for eating holes in more than clothes fibers. What they munch on includes hair, felt, and fur as well.

Getting to Know Your Moth Problem

If you’ve got one, your moth problem comes in the form of two types of clothes moths:

  • Webbing clothes moths – a solid pale colored moth with a patch of hair on its head.

Because this type of clothes moth does not fly well, it is commonly found in dark closets and storage areas.

  • Casemaking clothes moths – a bit darker than the webbing moth with dark spots on its wings

Don’t mistake clothes moths with Indian meal moths though. Indian meal moths eat herbs, nuts, flour, and other stored foods and are usually found in your pantry. And they are larger and darker in color than clothes moths and have dark brown tipped wings.     

Clothes moths are about 5 cm (1.9685 in) in size. Because they avoid the light, they are rarely seen. Female clothes moths run or hop to get around. So if you see a clothes moth flying around, it’s most likely a male.

Life Cycle of a Clothes Moth

Moth-eaten clothes

clothes moths do not feed. And most of them don’t live any longer than a month or so. This means they aren’t the pests eating holes in your stored items. It’s their larvae!

The adult clothes moth lays their eggs in the fibers stored in dark places. And when those eggs hatch, they become fabric-eating larvae.

The larvae feed on your belongings from several weeks to a couple of years, depending on environmental factors such as temperature, humidity, and even the quality of your belongings.

Once full grown, they spin a silk casing and transform into an adult moth. And when they break out of their silk casing, they immediately begin laying eggs as an adult moth. Yes, more larvae, more destruction to your belongings.

5 Ways to Take Care of Your Moth Problem

So whether you’re preparing to sell your home and storing items until you move or just putting away this season’s items, preventing a moth problem is important.

Protect your materials and take care of your moth problem. Here’s how:

1. Inspect your stuff

If you want to control your clothes moth infestation, it’s recommended that you hire a licensed pest management professional to do the job. They can facilitate the process and locate the sources of your infestation.

2. Store your stuff

Clothing and fabrics should be packed tightly in a container that is well sealed, no gaps. 

3. Dispose of or dry clean your stuff

Everything that is infested should be thrown away or dry cleaned.

4. Vacuum and clean your stuff

Vacuuming and cleaning helps remove and kill larvae already present in your home. So keep a clean home, of course, and pay close attention to the quiet, dark closets and cubbies that moths prefer.

5. Brush off and expose your stuff

Tackling a clothes moth problem includes periodically brushing off and exposing materials to sunlight.

Fall Maintenance or Preparing to Sell Your Home

Whether you are preparing to sell your home or getting ready for fall, taking proper care of your stored items is important. No one wants a clothes moth problem! And no one wants to throw away ruined belongings. Apply these five tips and save yourself a lot of money next year.

Contact me, Charles D’Alessandroyour Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate. As a Brooklyn real estate agent and broker with over 30 years of experience, I can help you prepare your home to sell even during these challenging times.

Our office is completely shut down and committed to your safety during the COVID-19 health crisis in compliance with the State of New York public health policies. I can be reached by phone at (718) 253-9600 ext. 1901 or by email at [email protected].


Charles D'Alessandro

Charles D’Alessandro
Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent
718-253-9600 ext. 1901

The Best Checklist to Prepare Your Home to Sell

Saturday, August 15th, 2020
Prepare your home to sell
It’s simple to prepare your home to sell.
Start here.

Yes! You decided to sell your home and hired the best real estate agent in Brooklyn. You’re off to a fantastic start. Now it’s time to prepare your home to sell. But what does that mean exactly? Your agent, of course, can guide you through the process of selling your home, but here’s a great checklist to get you started.

12-Step Checklist to Prepare Your Home to Sell

It’s time to roll up your sleeves and get to work. If you think selling a home is as simple as planting a “For Sale” sign in your yard and uploading a few photos from your iPhone, think again. There’s a lot more to it but only if you want it to sell for the best price.

Use this checklist and a little bit of elbow grease to prepare your home to sell:

1. Hire the Best Real Estate Agent in Brooklyn

Check this one off. You’ve got it covered. But let’s talk about why working with a great real estate agent is such a great idea when selling a home.

Selling your home yourself, and pocketing the cash you would otherwise pay a real estate agent is appealing to many, especially when the market is hot. But a “for sale by owner” almost always leads to sacrificing both your money and your time. So resist the temptation and hire a real estate agent.

When you work with an agent who is knowledgeable about your specific market, and you’re comfortable working with them, you can trust them to sell your house for top dollar. And you’ll save yourself a lot of headache and time, too.

2. Make a Good First Impression

Take good care of every potential buyer’s first impression of your home with updated curb appeal. When your curb appeal is great, they’ll want to see more.

Most curb appeal efforts are relatively simple to do. But if you’re not sure what you should do, ask your real estate agent for advice.

3. Do a Clean Sweep

When it comes to preparing your home to show, less is more. And that simply means decluttering all flat surfaces. After doing a clean sweep of the visible areas, declutter your closets, drawers, and cupboards. Remember, curious buyers open closets, drawers, and cupboards when they walk through a home. Nothing is off limits.

Also,a decluttered house is appealing allowing potential buyers to see its roominess. So trash, donate, gift, and pack up your stuff to prepare your home to sell.

4. Remove “You” From Your Space

This ties in with decluttering in Step 3. Buyers need to be able to visualize themselves and their family living in the property and loving it, too. So remove your personal items, family photos, even some artwork and furniture that may not appeal to the general public.

5. Go Neutral

Play it safe. If you haven’t already gone neutral on the walls in your home, start painting. Neutral colors are safe. Bright or bold colors are bound to be somebody’s least favorite and will turn away  interest in your home.  

Besides, lighter colors allow potential buyers to imagine what colors they would enjoy having on the walls when they’re living in the home.

6. Scrub Scuff Marks

This step should be done before your house goes on the market and requires a bit of elbow grease. If you don’t need to paint your walls, at least scrub off any scuff marks you see. And touch up those that won’t scrub off.

When potential buyers tour your home, they want to see a house that is in good repair and move-in ready. They don’t want to see a long list of repairs that need to be done before they can fall in love with the house.

7. Avoid Negativity

Loose handles, missing lightbulbs or lightbulbs that need to be replaced, have a negative effect on buyers. Such disrepair causes doubt in a potential buyer’s mind about the home you’re selling. Fix the “little things” to let them know that your house will make them a great home.

8. Stage a Welcoming Environment

Green plants create a welcoming environment that impress buyers upon entering your home. And that’s a good thing! Beautiful flowers or a bowl of fruit on the kitchen counter or dining room table add a warm, homey touch.

9. Eliminate Smelly Deal Breakers

Unpleasant odors, no matter how foul, even the slightest ones, are deal breakers. And some of them you may not even notice.

To help with that, invite someone over to try to detect any bad odors for you. You may grow accustomed to pet smells or odors from last night’s dinner. But an unbiased nose can help you determine whether or not deep cleaning is in order.

10. Keep Everything Clean and Tidy

Cleaning house

You want your property to look spotless. So, after you’ve cleaned your home, clean some more.

Imagine how your staged home would look in professional photos. That’s how you want your home looking, at its very best. Keep everything clean and tidy always, every time you leave it, looking its best for buyers coming to take a tour.

You never know when a buyer will schedule a last-minute tour. Always be prepared. Clean, clean, and clean some more.

11. Play it Safe

Hide your valuables, from art to jewelry. Lock them up, store them off-site, or at the very least, keep out of sight.

12. Invigorate with Staging

Nothing invigorates a house like staging it well. If your home furnishings or appliances scream 1980’s, seek help from a professional stager. Like a bold, orange wall, an out-dated home will not appeal to most potential buyers, no matter how nostalgic you are. 

A stager evaluates your home and your belongings. Then they determine and recommend what you must do to raise the bar. You might need to buy or rent some major pieces or purchase some baskets to stage an open shelf. Organizing your cleaning products on a laundry room closet shelf does wonders for your laundry space.

Trust your home stager. They know the real estate market and what sells. It’s their job to make your home appealing and interesting to potential buyers. 

Preparing to Sell is Simple

When you prepare your home to sell, the goal is to make potential buyers feel at home. With this checklist in hand, work through Steps 1 through 12 and impress lots of interested buyers.

Contact me, Charles D’Alessandroyour Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate. As a Brooklyn real estate agent and broker with over 30 years of experience, I can help you prepare your home to sell even during these challenging times.

Our office is completely shut down and committed to your safety during the COVID-19 health crisis in compliance with the State of New York public health policies. I can be reached by phone at (718) 253-9600 ext. 1901 or by email at [email protected].


Charles D'Alessandro

Charles D’Alessandro
Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent
718-253-9600 ext. 1901

How to Boost Your Property’s Curb Appeal to the Best it Can Be

Thursday, July 30th, 2020

COVID-19 and social distancing has changed the way we shop for homes. According to Realtor.com, homebuyers find the ability to take a virtual tour of a home helpful. And that means boosting your property’s curb appeal is a high-priority item on your to-do list.

Property's curb appeal
Your property’s curb appeal creates a make-or-break first impression in only eight seconds.

Why Your Property’s Curb Appeal is Important

Your property’s curb appeal is more important than ever now. And you have only eight seconds to beckon a second look or turn them off completely from the moment they lay eyes on your home.

Because of the coronavirus, homebuyers research and shop for houses online even more than they have in the past. They’re looking for plenty of high-quality photos of listings. They want to see a home’s interior and exterior and lots of both. They’re placing a lot more weight on photos of the exterior since they are limited to fewer in-person tours.

By the way, this makes walkthroughs of your property via video chat with an agent or thorough pre-recorded video available with your listing a great idea, too.

6 Ways to Make Homebuyers Eager to See What’s Inside Your Home

Investing in your property‘s curb appeal helps it sell faster and for more money, just as staging your home does. And you don’t need to spend thousands of dollars to create a great first impression either. Here are six of the best upgrades you can do for $100 or less:

1. Pay Attention to Your Driveway and/or Walkways

Your driveway and/or walkway lead the buyer’s eye toward your home’s front door and to the inside of your home.

  • Get rid of weeds
  • Patch minor cracks in the concrete with caulk
  • Hose down the driveway and/or walkway before photos, video, or in-person tours
  • Finish your concrete driveway and/or walkway with a clear, glossy sealer

2. Fix Up the Garage

The garage plays a big role in your property’s curb appeal, especially when it’s attached to your home.

  • Paint the garage doors the same color as your home’s trim
  • Add a garage door with a row of windows or swap out existing panels and add glass inserts
  • Stage the inside of your garage

3. Paint the Front Door

Front door curb appeal

Peeling paint, rusty hardware, and scuff marks are a big turn off, especially on the front door. But a fresh coat of paint immediately adds life to your home and catches the attention of onlookers. Show homebuyers that your house is loved and cared for.

  • Paint the front door with eye-catching color, such as red, yellow, or blue
  • Replace old hardware with updated doorknobs and hinges
  • Add a door with glass inserts to create a welcoming feeling

4. Keep Your Yard Green and Groomed

Your lawn, if you have one, is one of the first things a homebuyer sees when shopping online. And landscaping that is well-groomed creates a great first impression.

  • Mow the grass
  • Water the grass to keep it green
  • Prune shrubs
  • Weed flower beds and add fresh mulch

5. Turn On the Charm with Exterior Lighting

Create a warm, unified ambiance with nighttime lighting for your home. 

  • Add 60-watt LED bulbs with a warm tone to each side of your front door
  • Make sure all exterior lighting matches, on the house and on the garage

6. Make Your Front Porch More Welcoming

Give your property’s curb appeal a boost beyond just the front door. Replace your outdoor accents for an even greater first impression.

  • Add an attractive doormat
  • Replace your house numbers
  • Buy a new mailbox
  • Plant colorful annuals in pots and place them around your front porch
  • Clean windows
  • Sweep cobwebs

Look at Your Home From the Homebuyer’s Point of View

As more buyers shop for homes from a distance, paying close attention to the exterior of your listing is key. Look at your home through the eyes of the prospective homebuyer and provide plenty of great photos.

Remember, your property’s curb appeal has eight seconds to create a great first impression. Make it great, and they’ll eagerly walk through the rest of your home online.

Contact me, Charles D’Alessandroyour Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate. With over 30 plus years as a Brooklyn real estate agent and broker, I can help you navigate the selling process even during these challenging times.

Our office is completely shut down and committed to your safety during the COVID-19 health crisis in compliance with the State of New York public health policies. I can be reached by phone at (718) 253-9600 ext. 1901 or by email at [email protected].


Charles D'Alessandro

Charles D’Alessandro
Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent
718-253-9600 ext. 1901

The Best Way to Keep Your Home Clean and Safe Every Day

Monday, June 15th, 2020

If you’re wondering which way is the best way to keep your home clean and safe on a daily basis, this blog post is a must-read. Cleaning often is tedious to do throughout each day, but it is inexpensive and doable. But don’t stress about it. Just be mindful and clean, clean, clean!

Keep your home clean
There is a simple way to keep your home clean and safe.

Pandemic Versus Epidemic

Do you know what the difference is between a pandemic and an epidemic?

Pandemic

According to Merriam-Webster, when used as an adjective, pandemic means “occurring over a wide geographic area and affecting an exceptionally high proportion of the population.” But when used as a noun, it means “an outbreak of a disease that occurs over a wide geographic area and affects an exceptionally high proportion of the population.”

Epidemic

And according to Merriam-Webster, when epidemic is used as an adjective, it means “affecting or tending to affect a disproportionately large number of individuals within a population, community, or region at the same time.” But when used as a noun, it means “characterized by very widespread growth or extent of, relating to, or constituting an epidemic.”

Merriam-Webster further states, “An epidemic is an outbreak of disease that spreads quickly and affects many individuals at the same time. A pandemic is a kind of epidemic: one which has spread across a wider geographic range than an epidemic, and which has affected a significant portion of the population.”

Sanitize and Disinfect to Keep Your Home Clean

All it takes is a great spray bottle, some hydrogen peroxide, and 70% isopropyl alcohol. You don’t have to have a rag to wipe things down after you spritz your surfaces. But your wood and finished surfaces will do better if you follow up with a wipe down. Plus, you’ll wipe up some dirt for an even cleaner home.

1. Disinfect frequently-touched surfaces such as doorknobs, handrails, and tables.

2. Wipe down frequently-used appliances and areas such as large appliances, bathrooms, and countertops.

3. Sanitize the small stuff, too, such as light switches, remote control, and cell phone.

4. Disinfect outside items such as shoes and items you touched while you were out and about.

5. Wash your hands.

Wash hands properly

Wash Your Hands Properly

Wash your hands and wash them often to help keep your home clean. And when should you wash your hands?

  • After you go to the bathroom
  • When you blow your nose, cough, or sneeze
  • Before you eat
  • After you touch a surface that could be contaminated

And there is a way to properly wash your hands. This video from John Hopkins Medicine shows you how.

Keep Your Home Clean Now for Selling Later

And when you keep your home clean, really clean on a regular basis, you’re actually preparing your home to sell should you decide to do so.

If you in the market to sell or buy a new home, contact me, Charles D’Alessandroyour Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate. With 30 plus years of experience in the real estate industry, I can help even during these uncertain times.

Our office is completely shut down and committed to your safety during the COVID-19 health crisis in compliance with the State of New York public health policies. I can be reached by phone at (718) 253-9600 ext. 1901 or by email at [email protected].


Charles D'Alessandro

Charles D’Alessandro
Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent
718-253-9600 ext. 1901

The Most Important Things to Do Before You Sell Your Home

Monday, July 15th, 2019
Before you sell
Before you sell your home, there are a few important things to do before you list it.

If selling your home is in your future, you’ve got some important work to do ahead of you. There’s so much more to selling your home than just planting a for sale sign in your front yard. It means more than taking a few pictures of the place to post online, too. Here’s a checklist of nine important things to do before you sell your home.

Before You Sell Your Home

Invest in some curb appeal

The first thing prospective buyers see of your home should entice them to want to see more.

Stand on the front walk and examine your home closely. Look at it through a prospective buyer’s eyes. How does it look? Does it need paint? Are the gutters rusting? If you have a garden, is it overgrown with weeds and grass? These are relatively easy fixes.

Do a clean sweep

You know the saying, “Less is more”? This is so true when it comes to getting your house ready to show.

Declutter all visible areas first. Then move to behind closed doors: closets, drawers, and cupboards. Yes, even behind closed doors. No space is off-limits to curious buyers. Note: Hide or lock up your valuables before your home is shown.

Donate, pack up, give, or throw away excess belongings and stuff. Potential buyers may worry the house won’t have enough space for their belongings and stuff.

Plus, you’ll have less to deal with when it’s actually time to move.

Remove potential buyer distractions

This step goes hand-in-hand with the clean sweep. Buyers need to be able to visualize themselves and their family living in your house. So pack up your personal items, family photos, artwork, and furniture. Anything that could distract potential buyers from visualizing themselves living this space needs to go.

Paint walls with a neutral color

It’s rare that anyone will hate a neutral color. Light, neutral colors allow potential buyers to envision what the walls will look like with the paint color they like.

And while you’re at it, pay attention to the baseboards. Scuff marks and chipping make a home look neglected.

Fix what’s broke

Well, fix loose handles, missing lightbulbs, dripping faucets, and so forth. Buyers tend to wonder what else may be broken if these small things aren’t taken care of.

Clean, clean, clean

And then clean some more. Bathrooms, tile, counters, showers, tubs, windows, and floors should shine.

Invigorate your home with staging

Home stagers evaluate your home’s condition and the belongings inside. Their goal is to make your home appealing to the highest number of potential buyers and selling your home quickly and for more money.

Scope out our neighborhood

Look for houses for sale in your area and search the internet. Visit open houses that are comparable to your home, also. This will help you choose the best selling price for your home.

Choose a great real estate agent

A great real estate agent makes all the difference in the selling process.

Many people think they can sell their home themselves versus paying an agent. But resist the urge to save money and pocket the cash. For Sale by Owners (FSBO’s) almost always turn into disasters, sacrificing both your time and money.

A great real estate agent knows the current market and can suggest the price to list your home for. They have a great marketing plan for the sale of your home.

Charles D’Alessandro, your great Brooklyn real estate agent

Before you sell your home, contact Charles D’Alessandroyour Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate. Call (718) 253-9600 ext. 206 or email me at [email protected] today. With over 30 years of real estate experience in Brooklyn, I can guide you through each step of the selling process, from listing to closing.


Charles D’Alessandro
Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent
718-253-9600 ext. 206
[email protected]rooklynRealEstateSales.com

What are the Advantages of Virtual Home Staging?

Monday, October 15th, 2018

Virtual home staging

Virtual home staging offers two advantages over traditional home staging: time and cost

Home staging is nothing new. And staging your home for sale is remarkably beneficial. It’s also necessary if you want to sell your home quickly because today’s market is much more challenging than it used to be. You may already be aware of traditional home staging. But have you ever heard of virtual home staging?

What is Traditional Home Staging?

Wikipedia defines it as “the act of preparing a private residence for sale in the real estate marketplace. The goal of staging is to make a home appealing to the highest number of potential buyers, thereby selling a property more swiftly and for more money. Staging techniques focus on improving a property’s appeal by transforming it into a welcoming, attractive product that anyone might want. People usually use arts, painting, accessories, lights, greenery, and carpet to stage the home, to give potential buyers a more attractive first impression of the property.”

2 Types of Traditional Home Staging

There are two types of traditional home staging:

  1. Owner-occupied staging – seller is living in the home while it is on the market; stager uses the homeowner’s belongings to prepare the home for sale
  2. Vacant staging – the most expensive for sellers; stager rents furniture and accessories to dress up an empty space

How Does Home Staging Benefit the Seller?

Many confuse staging with decorating. And many fight against the process and recommendations of their home stager because the process calls for detachment. It requires detaching yourself emotionally from your home. But if you know the benefits of staging your home for sale, the transformation of your home with home staging is fun.

  • Potential buyers can picture your home as their home more easily
  • Home staging sells your home faster, 75 percent faster than homes that are not
  • You can get a better price for the sale of your home

The job of a home stager is to present your home in its best possible light. They work with what you have, rearranging and reallocating. Sometimes they instruct you to move or pack or store furniture. And sometimes they even bring in furniture and decorations to enhance the selling points of your home.

So don’t cause your home stager grief. Work with them. Your home stager has the biggest benefit at heart, to sell your home quickly and for the best price.

What is Virtual Home Staging?

Now that you know what home staging is and the benefits it provides to you as a home seller, what is virtual home staging, and how does that work?

Virtual home staging creates digital, realistic images of furniture in graphic editors and adds them to empty rooms in your home for sale. This helps potential buyers to better visualize your home and the spaces inside it once they’re furnished. This is extremely helpful to potential buyers when used in brochures or flyers. Potential buyers are able to view rooms empty and compare those empty rooms when they are furnished digitally.

Benefits of Virtual Home Staging

In addition to the benefits of traditional home staging, there are two major advantages that virtual home staging has over traditional home staging: time and cost.

  • Empty listings that are stuck on the market sell quickly after virtual home staging
  • Virtual home staging is more than ninety percent less expensive than traditional home staging
  • Your listing is more professionally represented and generates more interest when it is staged virtually

BoxBrownie.com offers competitive rates for professional virtual home staging. Their outputs are photorealistic, so you aren’t able to tell whether a property is physically staged or not.

Every home can benefit from some form of staging. And you can be as involved as you want depending on your needs and budget.

And although professional is inconvenient and a bit unnerving, selling your home in the shortest amount of time and for the most money is worth it.

Is your home empty? Has it been sitting on the market for a while? Want it to sell quickly? Call Charles D’Alessandro, your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate at (718) 253-9600 ext.206 or email [email protected]. He will advise you on virtual home staging and give you an action plan to follow to move your home from “For Sale” to SOLD!



Brooklyn Real Estate Agent

 Charles D’Alessandro

Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent

718-253-9600 ext. 206

[email protected]

When You Need Home Improvement Projects with Great ROI Now

Sunday, April 15th, 2018

carpenter installing crown moulding

Almost every home could use some updating here and there, now and then. How about yours? In the blog post, “How to Add Value to Your Property for a Quick Sale,” we listed a general overview of home improvements that can increase the value of your home. But here are some home projects with a great ROI (Return On Investment) based on Remodeling magazine’s newly-released Cost vs. Value Report for 2018. Not only will these projects bring a better selling price, they’ll also help your home sell faster.

Remodeling is far more cost-effective than replacing, but real estate pros say replacing is still the way to go. There’s a great ROI of 76.1 percent for replacement jobs. That’s a whole 20 percent more than remodeling jobs, which are at 56 percent this year.

6 Weekend Projects with a Great ROI

Projects that increase the value of your home don’t always take a ton of time, effort, and money.

  1. Update Your Kitchen Cabinets

Old oak cabinets with dated shiny brass hardware don’t require a complete gut job. Instead, spend a weekend repainting your old cabinets with a neutral color of paint. Finish the project off with new hardware to complete an updated look.

  1. Add Crown Molding

Make your home look bigger with crown molding. Yes, crown molding at the top of painted walls draws the eye upward, making a room appear bigger than it is. Start with rooms that are likely to yield a great ROI:

  • Kitchen
  • Bathrooms
  • Living spaces
  • Master bedroom
  1. Landscape the Yards

No one will want to walk through your front door unless the first impression is stunning. You can overhaul your front yard easily and quickly. Impress potential buyers by adding a path of pavers or sprucing up your flowerbeds with colorful blooms, for example. These two home improvement projects are fast and easy to do.

But don’t stop in the front yard. If your home entertains a lot of outdoor activity, landscape the backyard, too. A functioning fire pit, patio or deck furniture (a simple picnic table works well), and strings of outdoor lights make everyone, including potential buyers, envision themselves enjoying a meal or drinks outside.

  1. Replace Your Garage Door

Replacing the garage door is an easy way to increase the value of your home. And it has a great ROI. Garage door replacement has an ROI of 98.3 percent. That’s up from 85 percent year-over-year!

  1. Beautify Your Bathrooms

Bathrooms, like kitchens, have a major impact on potential buyers’ emotions toward a home. They expect clean, up-to-date bathrooms, just like they do kitchens. And, thankfully, bathroom improvement overhauls are easily done in a weekend.

Take a look at:

  • Lighting fixtures
  • Vanities
  • Hardware
  • Tile

Does everything need updating, or just an item or two? Again, you don’t have to shell out a ton of money to update a bathroom. And if you have the patience, you can demo and retile the bathroom yourself to save a lot of money.

  1. Say Goodbye to Dated Trends

What was once considered fresh and fashionable in the 70s, 80s, or 90s is out. All of those trends now give your home a very dated and ugly appearance. It’s time for all that is really old to “get outta town” to make room for the 21st century.

The list of outdated decorating trends is truly endless. But wallpaper, floor-to-ceiling wood paneling that may or not be wood, and popcorn ceilings are the three biggest offenders. Removing these three things alone (a popcorn ceiling doesn’t take much effort) will increase the value of your home and yield a great ROI.

6 Home Improvement Projects that Yield the Greatest ROI

Nationally, when it comes to home improvement projects with a great ROI, curb appeal yields the most. But here are the top six projects with the greatest ROI according to Remodeling magazine’s newly-released Cost vs. Value Report for 2018:

Garage Door Replacement – yields a 98.3% ROI

Manufactured Stone Veneer – yields a 97.1% ROI

Entry Door Replacement (Steel) – yields a 91.3% ROI

Deck Addition (Wood) – yields an 82.8% ROI

Minor Kitchen Remodel – yields an 81.1% ROI

Siding Replacement – yields a 76.7% ROI

If you live in Brooklyn Brownstone, a few of these home improvement projects may not apply. But go for the ones that will work to increase the value of your home, inside and out. Oh! And Mother’s Day is fast approaching. Why not gift one of these home improvement projects to Mom, even if she isn’t considering selling her home?

Do you need help deciding which home improvement(s) to make for a great ROI? Contact  Charles D’Alessandroyour Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate at (718) 253-9600 ext.206 or email [email protected]. With over 30 years of experience in the Brooklyn real estate market, he knows what it takes to sell your home quickly and for the best price.


Charles D’Alessandro

Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate

718-253-9600 ext. 206

[email protected]

How to Increase Your Selling Price without Going Broke

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

Increase your selling price

There are many ways to update and stage your home to increase your selling price before you list. And most of them won’t break the bank to do.

Ahhh spring! It marks the beginning of new growth and welcome changes in our surroundings and in the weather. Frigid temps, cabin fever, followed by warmer weather encourage people to get out and about “for a change.”And that goes for real estate as well. People are tired of cold weather and being cooped up inside. They’re ready for a change. For many, that means a change of address. So if you’re thinking about listing your home this spring, get ahead of the rush. Increase your selling price with the following ways now, before you list it. And it’s possible to do it without breaking the bank, too.

15 Ways to Increase Your Selling Price Before You List Your Home This Spring

  1. Make a great first impression

Curb appeal is vital. Potential buyers have passed judgment on your home before they walk through your front door. Spruce up the outside of your home and make this first impression count. Try adding a faux finish to corner keystones with two tones of paint. Apply stone sealer to walkway pavers. Dig in the dirt and plant flowers in bloom to impress potential buyers before they get out of the car.

  1. Clean everything thoroughly

Cleaning is essential, and it is the simplest way to increase your selling price. Vacuum, dust, clean windows, scrub/mop floors. Remove unpleasant pet odors and stains from carpet and furniture. If that means the carpet needs to be replaced, go with a neutral color. Get rid of surface mold if you have any. Mix one part water with one part bleach in a spray bottle. Spray it on the mold, and watch it disappear. If your shower door is grimy, clean it with a mixture of one part muriatic acid and 10 parts water. Then scrub it with steel wool and wipe it down. It’ll look like new!

  1. Update the bathroom

Bathrooms sell houses. So, if your dated tile needs updating, use paint. First, apply a coat of high-adhesion primer. Next, apply a covering of special ceramic epoxy. Oh, and pedestal sinks appeal to potential buyers because they can see how much floor space the bathroom has.

  1. Pitch, pack, and stage

Clutter detracts from a home. Pack and/or get rid of stuff that will keep potential buyers from seeing the full potential of your home. Figurines, junk mail, newspapers, magazines, paper piles, clothes, shoes, even pictures and shelves on walls … There is much that you can and should put out of sight before you list your home. Rooms filled with unnecessary items and furniture tell potential buyers that your home lacks highly coveted storage space. And storage space sells.

Paint the walls a neutral tone, and furnish the space in each room to show off the single purpose of each and how functional each one is.

  1. Remove yourself

Remove personal items like family photos, for example. It’s important that potential buyers be able to imagine themselves living in your house. And they won’t be able to with loud paint colors, wall coverings, or accessories. Make it easy for them to see themselves in your house. Neutralize your home.

  1. Remember, less is more

Replace oversized couches, chairs or coffee tables with smaller pieces. If replacing them isn’t possible, get rid of as much as you can. Let potential buyers embrace the space your house has to offer.

  1. Make the master bedroom “neutrally” appealing

Get rid of anything that is specific to male or female buyers. Go with a neutral paint and bedding that matches. Accessorize with only a few items that complement the color scheme you chose.

  1. Paint the old fireplace and fireplace screen

If you have a brick fireplace that stands out like an eyesore, give it a good cleaning. Scrub it with soap and water. Then, you can either polish the bricks using a stone color enhancer to make them shine or tone it down with a light coat of paint that matches the walls. Rubbing a light coat of paint on each brick, one at a time, with rag or brush will make the fireplace take on a new tone and stand out in a favorable way.

Remove the dated brass fireplace screen and wipe it down. Cover the glass with paper and tape. Next, spray the screen with heat-resistant spray paint. Hold the can about 18 inches away, and use long, even strokes. This is an inexpensive quick fix that will make it look like new.

  1. Update the kitchen

Dated kitchens can break a sale. If yours is dated, stain or paint the cupboards and replace the hardware.

If removing old hardware strips the holes in your cabinets, dip a toothpick in glue and put it in the stripped hole. Once the glue is dry, cut off the excess toothpick and put in the updated hardware.

Granite countertops are still a huge selling feature, but they’re expensive. You could do the demo yourself, and ask the vendor for remnants from previous projects to save on this terrific investment. The value granite countertops add to a kitchen is worth any money you invest in them. For a great return on investment, go granite.

Studies show that new kitchen appliances bring high returns from sellers, so get rid of old appliances that date your kitchen. If you can’t afford to install new appliances, you can give your dishwasher an updated look at least. Instead of buying a new one, remove the front panels. Clean them well and apply stainless-steel stick-on covering to each panel.

  1. Dress up your windows inexpensively

Use placemats to make stylish inexpensive window treatments. Here’s how. Apply hook-and-loop fasteners to the placemats. Attach them to a basic curtain rod. Next, pin them together at the bottom. Click here for 18 examples of inexpensive ways to dress up your windows.

  1. Let the sunshine in

Potential buyers love bright and airy rooms. Open up your window shades to let as much light in as possible. Add to the brightness of a room with light-colored paint on the walls and lots of artificial lighting.

  1. Give outdated flooring some TLC

It’s not as difficult to accomplish as you might think it is. To update old wood flooring, isolate damaged boards, cut them out and replace them with new pieces. Rent a sander from a local hardware store, and sand the floor. Lastly, stain the boards with color.

Vinyl tile is an inexpensive way to update your home if it’s done right. When laying the tiles, avoid matching patterns perfectly. Instead, give your floor a natural look and feel. Switch up the direction and placement of the tiles to mix the tones.

  1. Stage built-in bookshelves simply

Everyone loves built-in bookshelves, but they can be easily cluttered. Choose only a few neutral items to arrange in clusters of three. Each item in the cluster should be different in height. Using neutral items will prevent one single item standing out and detracting from your beautiful bookshelves.

  1. Increase your selling price out back

Decks increase your selling price when they’re in good shape. Get your deck in good shape. Sand the wood and cover it with a light-colored stain. The stain will give it a rustic, grainy look. Furnish it with a picnic table or a couple of lawn chairs and make the backyard appealing.

What kind of shape is your patio in? Does the surface need updating? Give your red-brick patio new life. Roll a light coat of paint onto the bricks. Then, lightly spray them with water before they dry. Now, before the water dries, dab them with a cloth. Your patio will look fresh and appealing, too.

  1. Cover up wood paneling

Wood paneling dates your house, but you don’t need to rip out. Just cover it up! Use wood filler to fill in the grooves and cracks between the panels. Sponge away excess filler, and let it dry. Once the filler is dry, paint the paneling.

All of the above are a part of the staging process which will increase your selling price. Home staging has proved time and again to be one of the best ways to sell a home quickly and for more money.

And you can certainly do it yourself. But, if you don’t want to spend the time it will to learn how to stage your home properly to increase your selling price or know you’ll never be great at staging, just hire a professional.

Are you ready to list your home this spring? Call Charles D’Alessandro at (718) 253-9600 ext. 206 or email [email protected] today. He will walk through your home and let you know what you should do to increase the selling price of your home or give you the name and number of a home stager who can help.


Charles D’Alessandro

Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate

718-253-9600 ext. 206

[email protected]

Is Your Home Truly Ready to be Listed for Sale?

Thursday, February 15th, 2018

Ready to be listed

Is your home truly ready to be listed for sale? Home safety checks are important to you as the seller to avoid possible negligent lawsuits.

Think your home is ready to be listed for sale? You may be tempted to list your home before it’s truly ready, for what you think are valid reasons. But don’t fall prey to that temptation. Because of the Breach of Duty regulations, you could be at risk of a lawsuit, if your home is listed before it is truly ready. If there are problems with your house, disclose them during negotiations.

What’s Most Important to Check to Make Sure Your Home is Truly Ready to be Listed for Sale?

Home safety includes everything from in-home to out-of-home safety. Visit ConsumerSafety.org for a thorough Home Safety Guide. Here are three home safety checks that are high on the list.

Important Safety Features in the Kitchen

The kitchen is one of the most hazardous areas in your home because of the high possibility of grease or electrical fires. Is there a working fire extinguisher in your kitchen? What is the expiration date listed on it?  If you don’t have one, purchase a fire extinguisher before you list your home and leave it in the kitchen. This will help you avoid a possible negligent lawsuit if an electrical or grease fire were to happen in that kitchen.

And if you rent out all or part of your home, make sure your kitchen is childproofed. Sharp utensils and harmful chemicals can be found in the kitchen and should be kept out of reach of children or secured with childproof locks.

Fire Safety

According to data collected by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), an average of $16,610 was the average monetary value of property damage caused by fire. And if you are accused of negligence, you will be required to pay for all damages. Take care to properly remove fire hazards in your home to make sure your home is truly ready to be listed for sale.

Damaged plugs and appliances, overloaded outlets, and multiple extension cords are home fire risks. Make sure outdoor grills and other outdoor cooking appliances are a safe distance from your house.

Home Safety Regarding Your Pool, Lawn, and Landscaping, too

Most Brooklyn homes do not have pools, but they are the most dangerous part of any residential home. One child under 14 drowns each day on average. If you happen to own a pool,

  • Install drain covers that are VGB-compliant
  • Store hazardous pool chemicals properly away from the pool, preferably in a locked shed
  • Cover your pool with an adequate safety cover

But what nearly every Brooklyn home does have is a lawn, even if it may be small at best. Potential safety hazards in a lawn, Charles, really? Yes! Make sure your home is truly ready to list by:

  • Removing pet feces and sharp items (rocks, glass, nails) from the yard
  • Check for and remove poisonous or harmful plants like poison ivy for example
  • Again, hazardous chemicals (weed killer and other hazardous lawn chemicals) should be stored properly away from the lawn, preferably under lock and key.

Make sure your home is truly ready to be listed for sale. Avoid a negligent lawsuit and keep the future homeowners of your house safe. Follow these and other guidelines listed in the Home Safety Guide offered at ConsumerSafety.org.


Charles D’Alessandro

Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate

718-253-9600 ext. 206

[email protected]

Top Improvements that will Help Your Home Sell Quickly

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

Home sell quickly

Want to know what improvements and upgrades will help your home sell quickly?

It never fails. Those selling their homes always ask, “What improvements or upgrades will increase the value of our home and help our home sell quickly, Charles?” To which I answer, “Improvements or upgrades that increase storage and maintain your home’s unique features.”

And according to the pros, there are eight.

8 Improvements or Upgrades that will Help Your Home Sell Quickly

  1. Kitchen Updates

An updated kitchen can sell a home quickly, and today’s buyers favor simple in the kitchen. Simple backsplashes like subway tile and subdued colors will help a home sell quickly. Consider painting your cabinets with a subdued color. The installation of inexpensive stainless steel appliances will update your kitchen like new in a snap. Buyers appreciate a modernized kitchen.

  1. Bathroom Upgrades

Replace your vanity. Change your shower/tub insert into a free-standing claw-foot tub. Consider a trendy frameless shower door and free-standing sink. Even a fresh coat of paint, new hardware, and re-glazing and re-caulking the tub will upgrade your bathroom to help your home sell quickly.

  1. Lots of Storage

Built-in bookshelves used to be home decorating no-nos. But today’s buyers are looking for practicality and charm. Built-in bookshelves, window seats with storage, closets with extra shelves, hooks, and rods are hot items and will help your home sell quickly. Buyers are looking for a place for everything so they can put everything in its place.

  1. Paint

A fresh coat of paint works wonders and “covers a multitude of sins.” Besides, the average person isn’t well-versed in the latest color trends anyway. All you need is a fresh coat of neutral, light, and bright paint throughout your home.

  1. Flooring Upgrades

Hardwood flooring (or flooring that looks like hardwood such as ceramic wood planks) transforms a home as well as a fresh coat of paint. It’s so much easier to clean and is extremely aesthetically pleasing to the eye.

  1. Improvements to Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Manicuring your landscape is a simple upgrade that comes with a big return on investment. Depending on the time of year, make sure your lawn is in great shape. Trim bushes and low-hanging branches, plant flowers or native plants, or place potted flowers around the front door. Add new mulch. Improving your home’s curb appeal works as many wonders as a fresh coat of paint throughout your home.

  1. Room Conversions or New Additions

Buyers are looking for heated and cooled square footage in a home. If you want to boost your sale price and score major brownie points, consider converting your garage, attic, or screened-in porch into heated and cooled square footage. You might even want to build a new addition. Buyers are looking for the most house for their money.

  1. Your Home’s Uniqueness

If your home has historical value, maintain its authenticity and integrity. Upgrade or improve your home with projects such as restoring original window casements and hardware.

These improvements and upgrades are guaranteed to pay off when your home is sold. And they will certainly help your home sell quickly.

Call Charles D’Alessandro for more information on improvements and upgrades that will help your home sell quickly. He has 30+ years of real estate experience, and he knows what it takes to sell your Brooklyn home quickly. Contact Charles D’Alessandro, your Brooklyn real estate agent with Fillmore Real Estate, at (718) 253-9700 ext. 206 today or click here now.


Charles D’Alessandro

Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate

718-253-9600 ext. 206

[email protected]