Archive for the ‘Selling Your Home’ Category

Does a Home Inspection Need to be Stressful?

Sunday, September 15th, 2019
Home inspections

A home inspection is beneficial to the seller as well as the buyer. No need to stress about home inspections.

Your home is on the market. And things are progressing well. You’ve got a buyer! The offer, the terms, and the price are all agreed upon. What comes next? The home inspection. And most homeowners find a home inspection to be stressful. Why?

What is a Home Inspection?

Before you and the buyers actually go to contract (aka escrow), the buyers will pay for a home inspection. Home inspections afford them the peace of mind that the condition of your house is in good order.

A home inspection is a report on the overall condition of a home. They are done by home inspectors who are trained and certified to do so.

The home inspector prepares and delivers a written report of their findings to the buyers. The buyers then use this information to help them make more educated decisions concerning their pending real estate purchase.

What to Expect on Home Inspection Day

No home is perfect. But a home inspection alleviates stress for you as the seller. Because knowing what an inspector looks for, allows you to sort out minor issues in advance.

The home inspector looks at and provides a written report on:

  • HVAC system
  • interior plumbing
  • electrical systems
  • roof
  • attic
  • floors
  • windows
  • doors
  • basement
  • foundation

Home inspections usually take two to four hours, sometimes longer, depending on the size of the house.

While the inspection is underway, you may feel helpless or that at the mercy of the buyer and his home inspector. But just let the process run its course.

What to Expect Following the Home Inspection

Most inspectors are fair and realize that whatever is in disrepair can be fixed. And most buyers understand a house is always in need of some repair. They expect that some things will need their attention after they move in.

Upon completion of the home inspection, it may take a couple of days for the buyer to receive a copy of the report. Exercise patience. Now is not the time to negotiate or fly off the handle. Just wait for the results of the report. If the buyer comes back with a list of repairs, expect to negotiate a compromise that works for both parties.

But remember, the ultimate goal is closing on the house.

Ask for a copy of the report and schedule time with your Realtor to review the following:

  • Small repairs listed that are not necessarily urgent
  • Repairs that were known by both parties in the original negotiations

When it comes to making the repairs listed in the report, what are your options?

  • Agree to do some repairs
  • Give the  buyer a credit
  • Reduce the price of your home
  • Do nothing at all

Remember though when you choose not to fix what needs fixing, you choose to sell your home as is and for a lower price. But this isn’t always the best choice since your ultimate goal is closing on the house.

And if there are major repairs listed, be sure to shop for the lowest cost of repair before you make a decision.

Home Inspections Don’t Have to be Stressful

Remember, home inspections are a normal part of the process. So stay cool.

Michael Reinhardt, a local attorney and Brooklyn real estate lawyer for over 20 years, wrote ‘Selling A Home Doesn’t Have To Be Stressful.’ Ask for your free copy today. There is no obligation, and the book’s information helps alleviate stress you may be feeling about the home selling process.

If you need to sell your home or have specific questions about home inspections, contact Charles D’Alessandroyour Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate. Call (718) 253-9600 ext. 206 or email [email protected] 


 

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

What Do You Need to Know About Rent Back Agreements?

Wednesday, May 15th, 2019
Rent Back Agreements can be advantageous to both buyers and sellers providing they are utilized judiciously.

Ever hear of rent back agreements? So what are they, and what are the advantages and disadvantages associated with this kind of real estate transaction?

Rent Back Agreements Defined

Wikpedia defines rent back agreements as “a form of property transaction involving the expeditious sale of an owner occupier’s residence to a landlord or property company and renting it back from the new owner.” They are also known as post-settlement occupancy agreements.

This kind of transaction allows a home seller to buy himself extra time to stay in the home after closing.

And why would a home seller need extra time beyond the closing date to stay in the home?

Rent Back Agreements Explained

Here are a couple of home sale stories to help explain what rent back agreements are.

The Story of the Brownstone

My wife and I paid a builder to build a getaway home outside of New York City limits. And now our builder is nearing completion.

We put our brownstone up for sale as soon as the builder broke ground, assuming that it could be on the market for a little while. But guess what? Our custom home isn’t quite finished, and we already have a buyer for our brownstone.

The buyer has come to an agreement on a reasonable closing date with us since our new home is almost built. But again, guess what? As our closing date approaches, the builder has informed us of a major delay. This snag is going to keep us out of our new home for another 30 days past the closing date.

So what can we do? We know the buyer wants to move into their brownstone on closing day. Wouldn’t you? Of course you would!

The Story of the Offer Too Good to Refuse

My friend was selling her condo. And it wasn’t long before she received a very attractive cash offer that was just too good to refuse. The cash offer, however, came with a very short time until closing. She expected and planned on having more time to find a new place to live. But she knew she couldn’t turn down the buyer’s cash offer.

So there she was, cash in hand and no home to move into at closing time. What could she do?

Benefits of Rent Back Agreements

In both of the stories, the sellers ended up with no place to go on closing day. And in both cases, their real estate agents proposed rent back agreements.

In the case of the condo seller, her buyer was an investor who was planning to rent the condo out anyway. And he readily accepted. For 40 days past the closing date, she paid a daily rate that was equivalent to her mortgage payment plus the condo fee.

Benefits for the Seller

  • Allowed to stay in the home until a specified date past closing
  • Able to put things together to close the deal (if used properly with the appropriate language inserted in the addendum to the contract)

Benefits for the Buyer

  • Extra income can offset mortgage payments and some closing costs, such as broker commissions, appraisal fees, and attorney fees
  • Agreeing to a rent back gets your offer accepted in multiple offer situations in most cases

Benefits for Both the Buyer and the Seller

  • Minimizes stress for everybody involved by wrapping the rent into the closing and delivering it as a single payment
  • Used judiciously, it’s a win-win for all parties

Before Agreeing to Rent Back Agreements

Before agreeing to rent-back agreements, think carefully about the terms. Spell out the details for the record to avoid misunderstandings.

  • Understand why the seller wants a rent-back agreement
  • Charge a fair price
  • Don’t sign a lease that lasts longer than 60 days
  • Charge a holdover fee if the seller stays longer than agreed
  • Collect a security deposit
  • Require renters insurance

Most people do their best to plan ahead. But life happens. When a seller gets an offer with a proposed settlement date, they might ask, “Now, how am I going to coordinate getting out of this house and into another without having movers lined up in the driveway?”

Take note: Rent back agreements should be treated the same as you would treat any other business relationship. Buyers, never let the sellers retain possession of the home without drawing up a formal occupancy agreement, never. Because with terms and conditions of the seller’s stay in the buyer’s new home, both parties are protected.

Have you ever needed rent back agreements? Did a real estate agent you were working with suggest using a rent back agreement? There’s a lot that goes into a good rent back agreement. And in order for it to do its best work for both parties, it must be used properly. I recommend consulting with a real estate lawyer for more information.


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

Should You Sell Your Home First?

Tuesday, April 30th, 2019
Sell your home

Should you sell your home first or wait until it sells to buy a new one?

If you’re moving soon, you might be questioning whether or not you should sell your home before buying a new one. There are a lot of factors involved in answering this question and making a decision. But hashed out below are the pros and cons of each. Now you can decide whether or not you should sell your home first before buying a one. And you can decide with confidence.

 

Yes, Sell Your Home First If You …

Want to get the most money for your home

If you’re not in any hurry, you won’t be tempted to take a low offer. It’s hard for you as a seller to hold firm on a price when you’re carrying two mortgages. And if you’re not in any hurry, you’ll also have negotiating power.

Can include a contingency clause in your contract of sale

You certainly don’t want to lose a buyer just to be able to stay in your home longer. But you can add a contingency clause to your contract that allows you to remain in your house for a short time after closing. A contingency of 30 to 60 days will give you enough time to close on a new property. It may be difficult to get the buyer to agree to this. But if they do, you’ll have plenty of time to find the perfect new house.

Can handle moving twice

If you sell your home first, you can always live in a short-term rental until you find a new place. This means moving twice, yes. But if you can handle it and are okay with that, it gives you an option.

Don’t want to be stressed about selling

No doubt about it. Selling a home is stressful, no matter how organized, prepared, or easy-going you may be. And carrying a second mortgage is stressful enough to elevate your blood pressure.

 

Yes, Buy a New Home First If …

It’s the Brooklyn home you’ve always wanted

 If you’re absolutely sure you’ve found your dream house, you should buy it now, even if your current house hasn’t sold. You might be full of regret later if you let your dream house pass you by.  Just make sure the house is truly worth it.

You’ve found a deal that’s too good to pass up

If you’ve researched the comps and you know the home you’ve found is too good a deal to pass up,  buy it. Waiting to sell your home might cost you more in the long run if you lose out on a good bargain.

The real estate market is a seller’s market

If it’s seller’s market, there are more buyers than there are houses selling, you won’t have any difficulty selling your Brooklyn property.

You have the money

Talk with Charles D’Alessandro, your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent. Find out how long homes that are comparable to yours are taking to sell these days. Then, do the math. Determine whether or not you have enough in savings to make the down payment and both monthly mortgage payments while you’re waiting to sell.

Do you need to sell your home? Should you buy a new home now or wait until the home you’re selling sells? Call Charles D’Alessandro, your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate and ask him. Call (718) 253-9600 ext.206 email [email protected] With 30-plus years of real estate experience in Brooklyn, he’s got the answers.

 


 

Brooklyn Real Estate Agent

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

When You Need to Sell Your House Now But It Isn’t Selling

Monday, April 15th, 2019
Sell your house
Renting your home is a great option when you’ve been relocated and can’t sell your house.

Are you relocating? If you took a new job in a new place, and you just can’t get your house sold, you’re probably feeling like you’re in a bit of a pickle. Whenever a home sells, it’s always our hope to close the sale within a certain amount of time. This is especially true when you’re relocating or need to sell your house before buying another one. But sometimes it takes a lot longer than planned. Don’t fret. You can rent your home.

When You Need to Sell Your House but It Isn’t Selling, Rent It

The people who first came to mind when I started this blog post are those in military service.

Some friends of mine who serve in the Air Force relocated from South Dakota to Wyoming. Since they couldn’t live on base in the military housing provided to Air Force Officers, they bought a home. Then, two years later, the Air Force gave them orders to serve in Wyoming. But they couldn’t sell their house in South Dakota.

So what could they do?

Renting Until You Sell Your House

Renting your home is one way to generate cash flow while you wait for your home to sell. The monthly rent pays all or part of your mortgage costs and therefore, helps you avoid foreclosure. And if the market is slow like it was in 2008, renting allows you to:

  • Sell your home for a profit when the market recovers
  • Keep the mortgage paid until you find a qualified buyer

But you’ve got to weigh your pros and cons with renting.

What to Know Before Renting Your Home

There are important things to consider about renting before you’re a landlord.

  • Costs
  • Rates
  • Tenants
  • Benefits

 

Costs

The costs of becoming a landlord involve Homeowner’s Insurance, Property Management, and Capital Gains.

  1. Your Homeowner’s Insurance needs to change to a policy that covers landlords and rental properties specifically. And landlord policies cost more than a standard homeowners policy since landlords need more protection than the typical homeowner.
  1. Property management could cost you a lot of the monthly rent payment your tenants pay you, especially if you are a remote landlord. Unless you live near the rental, and you are skilled to take care of clogged drains, routine maintenance, or even deadbeat tenants, you will have to hire a property manager. And the cost to pay a property manager is generally around 10 percent of the monthly rent.
  1. Simply, you must live in your home for two of the five years prior to the sale of your home in order to avoid paying Capital Gains Taxes on:
  • up to $250,000 of profit if you are single
  • $500,000 of profit if you are married

However, if you rent your home for longer than three years after you relocate and then sell your house for a profit, taxes on that profit gained are due to the federal government.

Rates

What will you charge your renters to rent your home? What’s appropriate? This alone can be difficult to determine due to all the factors that need to be considered.

  • In general, it is suggested that you charge at least one percent of the mortgage. This should generate enough positive cash flow.
  • Charging one percent of the mortgage must also be reasonable for your neighborhood. Find out what the rental properties near your home are renting for to help you determine what is reasonable. To learn about rates, talk to property management agencies, search for similar rentals online, and check Craigslist, Rentometer, and Rent.com.
  • To get an idea about how much money you can expect to receive from a year of renting, you have to factor in your vacancy rates. It is suggested that investment property owners plan for only ten and a half months of occupancy per year.

What if you find that the rent you should charge, minus the costs and vacancy rate, won’t actually be enough to cover your monthly mortgage? It may still make sense to rent out your home until you sell your house instead of attempting to carry the mortgage all by yourself.

Tenants

After researching the costs involved as a landlord and the rates you should charge to rent your home, you still have to find reliable tenants. How?

  • Advertise – Advertise online, on rental sites like Rent.com and Craigslist, and on social media. And advertise on local relocation firms, HR departments, and local universities, too. Always advertise the good old-fashioned way, too. Put a sign in your yard.
  • Ask questions – Put every applicant through a screening process. Boilerplate applications and lease agreements can be found online, but you must ask your potential tenants about their: income, employment history, rental history.
  • Call all of their references.

Note: You can request Social Security numbers for background and credit checks through a website like E-Renter. Background and credit checks cost around $25, but that’s nothing compared to the number of headaches you could be spared.

Benefits

The benefits of renting your home until you sell your house shouldn’t be overlooked.

  • Capital Loss. Renting your home and then selling it at a loss allows you to claim the capital loss against your income. That can be a huge tax break!
  • Tax Breaks. There are other tax breaks available to you as a homeowner who rents your home. Landlords can deduct almost any expense related to the maintenance and marketing of their rental property. Insurance premiums, repairs, advertising costs, landscaping services, property management services, mortgage interest, and travel expenses related to the rental can be deducted.

 

More Notes Worth Considering Before You Rent Your Home

Renting your home until you sell your home is a great way to generate cash flow, cover your mortgage costs, and avoid foreclosure. But if you choose to rent your home:

  • Plan to rent it for at least one year.
  • Draw up a lease. Most renters prefer the security of a lease. But include a clause in the lease about the home being for sale. And see a real estate attorney for help with making your lease agreement clear, making sure it protects you.
  • Know the rental laws in New York.
  • Save money for repairs. You will have to make repairs before your renters move in and again after they move out. You are responsible for repairing anything major that breaks, such as the air conditioner or refrigerator.

Do you need to sell your home? Call Charles D’Alessandro, your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate at (718) 253-9600 ext.206. Or email him at [email protected] Charles can help you sell your home or protect your home as a rental property.


Brooklyn Real Estate Agent

 Charles D’Alessandro

Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent

718-253-9600 ext. 206

[email protected]

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year to Sell Your Home

Saturday, December 15th, 2018

Time of the year

Now is the best time of the year to sell your home thanks to some really great reasons that only the month of December provides.

Is now a good time to be selling a home? When it comes to selling your home, there’s no time like Christmas! It’s true there are fewer buyers looking for a home at this time of the year. But the pros definitely outweigh the cons. So don’t let the holidays keep you from taking advantage of selling your home now. It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

Why Christmas is the Most Wonderful Time of the Year to Sell Your Home

Staging is Simple

Thanks to holiday decorating, you can get by with minimal staging. However, decorate with a light hand.

Buyers are Serious

Buyers at this time of the year are serious about getting into a home. Honestly, there are serious buyers out there at all times of the year. But in December, the tire kickers are eliminated. They’re less likely to waste time viewing anything that doesn’t have what they want and need in a home. What makes many of them serious about finding a home in December?

  • They may have sold their homes in the fall
  • A job relocation before the new year arrives may be their current situation
  • Families with school children may want to get moved and settled a bit during Christmas break

Closings Happen Quickly

Since there are fewer transactions being processed at this time of the year, closings happen more quickly. Home inspectors have fewer inspections to do. Mortgage lenders have fewer loans to process. And attorneys have fewer closings to handle. That’s a whole lotta stress taken outta the picture, too!

Competition Isn’t Fierce

And fewer homes listed at this time of the year is to your advantage. With fewer homes on the market, your home stands a much better chance of selling. Once the holidays are over, more For Sale signs start appearing. And that brings the chances of your home being seen and purchased after January 1 way down.

Are you thinking about selling your home or waiting to list it in the spring? Now is the most wonderful time of the year, and for good reason. If your home has been on the market for a few months, take this time to reassess your strategy for getting your property sold. But don’t give waiting until spring to sell your home another thought. And don’t worry about your kids’ messy playroom or all those dirty dishes you used making holiday goodies. Enjoy the most wonderful time of the year and the serious buyers who want to see and buy your house as is in December.

The Best Real Estate Agent

Charles D’Alessandro won’t tell you that the fall or winter months are a bad time of the year to sell. He’s a great real estate agent who adapts to the time of the year and markets your listing accordingly. Click here for tips on how to sell a home during the fall or winter months. Then give Charles D’Alessandro, your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate a call at (718) 253-9600 ext.206 or email charles[email protected]



Brooklyn Real Estate Agent

 Charles D’Alessandro

Your Brooklyn Real Estate Agent

718-253-9600 ext. 206

[email protected]

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]

10 Useful Closing Checklist Tips After Everything is Out of the House

Tuesday, May 15th, 2018

Closing checklist

Once the house is empty, use these useful closing checklist tips to help you efficiently wrap up the moving process for closing day.

There are certain things every responsible home seller should do once everything is out of the house. It seems the selling process just cannot be completed as needed until your personal belongings and furniture are out. Once the house is empty, these useful closing checklist tips will wrap up the moving process in an efficient way.

Closing Checklist Tips 1 Through 10

Tip #1: Keep It Together

Your escrow officer or closing agent will give you a closing package containing seller disclosures, the purchase contract, and closing statement. Keep them together in a file folder that is easily accessible in a safe place.

Tip #2: Clean It Up

Clean the house yourself or hire a cleaning professional to do it for you. “Clean” can be a relative term. Basically, leave the house in better condition than you would like to find your new home in.

  • Wipe down cabinets, inside and out, and shelves
  • Vacuum the floors
  • Clean kitchen appliances, inside the refrigerator and oven
  • Wipe down kitchen counters
  • Scour sinks, tubs, and toilets
  • Wash flooring
  • Throw away trash
  • Properly dispose of toxic chemicals
  • Sweep the garage floor
  • Stack paint cans, roofing materials, or extra flooring

This is your last opportunity to make a great impression on the buyer. Make a good one and go the extra mile.

Tip #3: Set It Aside

If you don’t already have a place for appliance manuals, receipts, building plans, and warranties, set them aside as you come across them. I’m talking manuals for the HVAC, security system, sprinkler system, contractor receipts for the awnings you added above the front and back doors, and their warranties. Staple the receipts to their manuals and put it all in a file folder. You can leave this file in a drawer or on the kitchen counter for the buyers. They’ll greatly appreciate the thoughtfulness!

Tip #4: Walk Through It

Attend the final walkthrough. There are lots of things about your home that only you as the home seller will know. Traits like how to reset the on-demand hot water heater when the water turns cold while showering. Attending the final walkthrough will give you the opportunity to graciously pass on any quirks or traits to the home buyer.

Tip #5: Turn It Off

Make sure the water shut-off valve to each appliance is completely turned off. Disconnecting the appliances from their water sources is not enough. Even a small but steady drip, can eventually flood a home. Some sellers are extra careful and will shut off water sources valves to sinks, toilets, and dishwashers, too.

Note: Leave a note for the buyers telling them which water source valves have been shut off.

Tip #6: Cancel It

When you know the deed has been recorded or the title transfer has formally taken place, call your insurance agent and cancel your insurance policies. There should be a refund check from a prepaid premium for your homeowner’s insurance due you.

Tip #7: Stop and Cancel It

Stop the newspaper and cancel the utilities. Write a list of your utility companies and their phone numbers, including the newspaper subscription if you have one. And don’t forget about the utilities you pay quarterly.

Tip #8:  Leave It

All of your house keys, remotes, shed keys, mailbox keys, and codes should be left in a kitchen drawer for the buyers. They’ll probably change the locks for safe measure, but you should still leave keys, codes, and remotes.

Tip #9: Run Through It One Last Time

Make a last pass through the house. Check every cabinet, drawer, and storage place for forgotten items. If your spouse, friend, or family member tells you they went through every room with a fine-toothed comb, run through everything one more time. You might find something insignificant, like an empty bottle, but it will give you peace of mind.

When we moved last year, we left the old toboggan that my dad bought for our family for Christmas when I was in 6th grade. We forgot about it up in the rafters of the garage. I loved that thing and the memories we have tied to it. Fortunately for us, the buyer texted us about it, and we were able to retrieve it.

Tip #10: Close It Up

Finally, latch the windows, turn off the lights, and lock the door. Yes, you’d be surprised by how many people forget to close up the house. And this is important. If no one can see inside, the chances of a break-in are less likely.

On the day of closing, you and the buyer will have separate chances to sign the closing documents. Your agent will congratulate you on the close of your escrow and everyone can celebrate.

With over 30 years of experience in the Brooklyn real estate market, Charles is a Brooklyn Real Estate Agent you can trust to sell your home and support you every step of the way in the process. He knows what it takes to get your home sold. Contact Charles D’Alessandroyour Brooklyn Real Estate Agent with Fillmore Real Estate at (718) 253-9600 ext.206 or email [email protected]. for the best closing checklist for your home.


 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]

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]

The Best Way to Update Your Cabinets with Paint

Wednesday, November 15th, 2017

Update your cabinets

You can hire a professional to paint your cabinets, but if saving money is a priority, do it yourself.

The kitchen is the heart of the home and the second major selling point of any house. And it costs a pretty penny to update especially when it comes to replacing cabinets and appliances. If you need to update your cabinets in the kitchen or in the bathroom, but you’re not financially able to replace them, think paint! Paint works wonders. But if you want crave-worthy cabinets with professional-style results, it’s imperative that you follow each step carefully. No skipping or skrimping. Remember, “haste makes waste” when it comes to painting.

How to Update Your Cabinets Yourself

You can hire a professional to paint your cabinets, but if saving money is a priority, do it yourself. Need some ideas to help you update your cabinets? Here’s an awesome list from HGTV:

1. Choose the Best Paint

If you’re going to save the cost of a professional and update your cabinets DIY, look for paint at your local paint supply store. The staff of a reputable paint supply store will help you pick the best products for your cabinets. Ask for paint that is non-blocking so it won’t stick when cabinets and drawers are closed. It needs to be able to stand up to a lot of wiping and cleaning. You don’t want the paint coming off whenever you’re scrubbing or wiping down your cabinets and drawers.

Choose your paint color and finish keeping in mind that oil paint is hard to work with. Choose a latex satin finish paint instead. It’s also important to know that dark colors tend to show imperfections in the paint and cabinetry and highlight dirt more than light colors do.

2. Prepare to Update Your Cabinets

First, decide if you want to paint your cabinets with a paintbrush and foam roller or spray paint them with a spray gun. Rolling the paint on won’t look as good as spraying the paint on, but it takes less skill. Spray painting will get the job done quicker than painting with a paintbrush and foam roller, but in order to get that professional-looking finish, you’ll need a good paint spray gun.

Now that you’ve decided the paint method to update your cabinets with, prepare for painting:

  • Clear counters
  • Empty cabinets
  • Cover backsplash and appliances
  • Remove hinges, hardware, doors, and drawers
  • Put hinges and hardware in plastic bags
  • Label each door with masking tape
  • Set up a worktable or prop 2×4’s on buckets or boxes

Purchase your paint and primer along with any of the products you need to prepare your cabinets for primer. Don’t forget the angled brush and mini foam roller if you’re not spray painting the cabinets.

3. Prep Your Cabinets

Before you begin painting, look at the existing finish. Is it pealing, greasy, dirty, etc.? If the existing finish is pealing, strip it off. Think of it as rust on a car. You wouldn’t paint over the rust because the rust will just fall off taking the paint with it. If the existing finish is in good shape, skip the stripping step and begin cleaning. Prepping all doors and drawers properly makes sure the paint will stick.

  • Furniture normally doesn’t have grease on it, but cabinets often do. Scrub them thoroughly using a clean, soft rag and mineral spirits or trisodium phosphate (TSP) to remove every drop of grease and grime, every drop. Don’t just wipe them down. It’s crucial that old oils, waxes, and grime are removed. Paint covers a multitude of sins, but it refuses to abide dirty, greasy surfaces. Daniel Jones of Wehrli Furniture Company in Naperville, Illinois, says, “We use a product called Wax Wash to clean furniture. But for greasy cabinets, we use something similar to 409 and then Wax Wash. You have to get all the grease off or the paint won’t stick.”
  • Fill dents, grooves, or holes with a good wood filler.
  • Lightly sand surfaces using 100-grit sandpaper to scuff every inch. This creates grooves so the paint has something to adhere to. This step isn’t anything you need to be crazy particular about. You just need to create a scratch pattern that paint will stick to.
  • Wipe cabinets and drawers with a tack cloth to remove dust before drilling new holes for new hardware.
  • Fill in gaps or seams with caulk

4. Apply Primer to Your Cabinets

If you want professional-looking results, don’t skip the primer. It’s imperative to prime every part of your cabinets – boxes, door fronts, drawers before you start applying paint. Use a stain-blocking primer designed for glossy surfaces.

5. Start Applying Your Paint

Once the primer that you applied to every part of your cabinets is completely dry, apply the latex satin paint. Work in sections using the angled brush and go over what you’ve painted with the brush with the mini foam roller. Applying the paint in this way provides that professional-looking finish you’re looking for.

If you chose to use a paint spray gun, the process is the same as it would be if working with a brush and roller. Just apply the spray paint to your cabinets outside where there is adequate ventilation.

Apply at least two coats of paint. Let the paint dry thoroughly and lightly sand between coats.

Once everything is painted and the paint is completely dry, use very fine grit sandpaper to give everything a final sanding. Use tack cloth to remove sanding dust and apply a couple coats of satin polycrylic for added durability.

6. Reinstall Doors and Drawers

Once all the paint is dry, put your cabinets back together. And now you get to install your new hardware or the old hardware you stored systematically in plastic bags.

If you’re stumped about how to upgrade your cabinets in your home, whether selling or buying, call Charles D’Alessandro. His 30+ years of real estate experience in the Brooklyn area has given him an eye for what is truly needed. He also knows the best people to contact for help. 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]