10 reasons to hit the right home selling price

Pricing your home right from the start can result in a quicker sale. 

  1. Strategic pricing that’s based on a thorough, up-to-the-minute market analysis. If our price is too low, we leave money on the table. If our price is too high, we leave your home on the market unsold. Later, it’s likely to sell for less than it would if we priced it correctly from the start. A strategic, fact-based listing price that helps your home get noticed and sell more quickly for the best possible sale price.
  2. Each new listing creates a buzz in the local real estate community. The right price will attract more Realtors to show the house. The right price will generate more calls and email inquiries.
  3. Homes tend to sell closer to the asking price during the first few weeks on the market, resulting in a higher price in a shorter time.
  4. Fewer mortgage payments and less interest paid means more money in your pocket.
  5. The right price sends the message to the buyer that your home is a better value compared to others on the market.
  6. Less time on the market means less time keeping the home ready for showings.
  7. In a fluctuating market, it is better to sell now as prices may decrease even more.
  8. The longer the house sits on the market, buyers may think there is something wrong with the house.
  9. Keep your ultimate goal in mind – selling now means moving on with your life.
  10. If there are no showings, the price is too high. If there are several showings but no offers indicates good marketing, but buyers will react to overpricing when they step into the house.

Request a free home evaluation. 

12 interior home remodeling projects with highest returns

If you are thinking of selling your home and need to do a few updates first, The National Association of Realtors Remodeling Impact Report of 2017 offers data on the 12 interior projects worth doing that will result in the highest return on your remodeling dollars.

Complete kitchen renovation, kitchen upgrade, and bathroom renovation rank the highest of most likely adding value to the home for sale.

 

Rank of projects highest to lowest (2017 Remodeling Impact Report):

  • Complete kitchen renovation
  • Kitchen upgrade
  • Bathroom renovation
  • Add new bathroom
  • New master suite
  • New wood flooring
  • HVAC replacement
  • Hardwood flooring refinish
  • Basement conversion to living area
  • Attic conversion to living area
  • Closet renovation
  • Insulation upgrade

Thinking of buying or selling real estate in NW Wisconsin? Call Jean Hedren, Edina Realty NW Wisconsin, 218-590-6634. Email: jeanhedren@edinarealty.com.

How do I prepare for a home showing?

What is a home showing?

During a home showing, buyers can tour each room of the home, and they may even peek into closets or check that light switches and other appliances work. It can feel invasive, but it’s important to remember that each person who enters your home is considering a major investment. By allowing them access to each room and space, you may help them get closer to bidding on your home.

Who is present during a home showing?

The buyer and their agent will typically attend a pre-scheduled home showing. In some cases, the seller’s agent (also called the listing agent) may be there to let them in.

More commonly, your listing agent may provide access to buyers and their agents using a secure lockbox. This allows your listing agent to accommodate more showings than if they needed to be physically present for each one.

How long do showings last?

If a buyer is looking for a certain feature that your home doesn’t have — like a split-level floor plan or a master suite with a walk-in closet — they may simply walk in and out in a matter of minutes.

However, today’s buyers are tech-savvy and the vast majority are looking at homes online before viewing them in person — and ruling out homes before they ever enter them. As a result, many buyers who attend a showing at your house will be quite familiar with the property’s layout and features from the listing photos. They may be there to explore specific areas they liked, or to verify the house is as great as it looked online.

If a buyer is seriously interested in your home, they may spend up to an hour in your home as they:

  • Tour each room, nook and cranny
  • Explore the attic or basement
  • Measure rooms to see if their furniture would fit
  • Discuss options for renovations or small upgrades
  • Begin to determine how each room would be used

It’s also common for early-stage buyers to schedule several back-to-back showings, knowing they will schedule a second showing for the homes they like best. So as a seller, don’t be too discouraged if a potential buyer is in and out in 20 minutes. They may just be getting a feel for the market — and they may be back if they find your home stands out among other contenders.

How do I prepare for a home showing?

You’ll already have prepared your home’s interior and exterior before listing so it’s mostly a matter of tidying up the house so it looks as good as your listing photos.

Consider writing out a quick checklist for each room, including:

  • Bedrooms: Make the beds, empty the hampers, clear surfaces, leave nothing on the floor
  • Bathrooms: Tidy countertops, empty the trash, hang fresh hand towels, clean the toilet
  • Living room: Remove clutter, rearrange pillows and throw blankets
  • Kitchen: Tidy countertops, empty the trash, no dishes in sink or dishwasher
  • Entryway: Have a designated place for visitors to place their boots and jackets, if you’re selling in the fall or winter
  • Exterior: Clear driveway and sidewalks from snow and ice, turn on exterior lights
  • Daytime lighting: For daytime showings, open up your curtains to let in natural light
  • Nighttime lighting: If they’ll arrive after dark, turn on interior and exterior lights

Ready to sell? Looking for help?

If you’re ready to sell your home, reach out any time to get the process started.

Resolved to sell your home? Don’t delay until May.

It’s February. If you’ve resolved that it’s time to move on to the next stage of your life, then I’d like to suggest you don’t delay until May. Get started now.

Around here sellers, buyers, and even Realtors can often think a little too seasonally. Summer might be the only time of the year we can grow tomatoes in northern Wisconsin, but that doesn’t mean it’s the only time of year we can produce real estate sales.

Today’s lake-home market is no longer just a summertime surge. Maybe it’s because buyers are now eager to enjoy their new homes all year round. In the fall there’s hunting, fishing, paddling, hiking, biking, and ATVing. In the winter there’s skiing, snowmobiling, ice fishing, and just relaxing by the fire. Every spring, long before the water is warm enough for swimming, we’re blessed with months of weather that’s perfect for enjoying the great outdoors in other ways. (Well, OK. Two months.)

Serious, purposeful buyers are on the hunt now. At this very moment they’re getting pre-approved, researching lakes, and reaching for their checkbooks. So if you’re ready to move on to the next stage of your life, there’s no reason to delay until May. Keep in mind, too, that listing your home today doesn’t mean moving out next Tuesday. Even after we’ve done a little negotiating and you’ve accepted a buyer’s offer, more time will elapse before there’s an actual closing. Typically, unless it’s a cash offer with no inspections or other contingencies, that’s about another 60 days.

If things happen fast, could you end up moving while there’s still snow on the ground? Sure. But it’s really no big deal. (And on this I speak from experience.) Moving in the winter or early spring is nothing to be afraid of—especially if you’re paying someone else to load up the moving van and drive it away. Of course, if you’re leaving most furnishings behind, then moving will be less of an issue anyway.

Selling a year-round lake home or cabin, the best time to find buyers is… Year-round. So if you’d like to learn more about what your home is likely to sell for in our current market, call Jean Hedren, Your Edina Realty NW Wisconsin Realtor, at 218-590-6634. Or, you can reach me at jeanhedren@edinarealty.com.

Shoreland zoning protects your property values

If you’re shopping for waterfront property, you should know about shoreland zoning and the rules that go with it. No one likes rules. But the first thing you should know is that these rules don’t just benefit fish, birds, and wildlife, they benefit you

By preserving the up north qualities of our lakes and streams, these rules also preserve your property values. Even up here in NW Wisconsin, some lakes have a more urban feel. Other lakes, however, still have a relatively undeveloped feel – even though most of their shoreline is developed. Views are preserved, privacy is preserved, and so are property values.

Second, it’s important to know that certain minimum standards are in place in Wisconsin. In some counties, and even on certain lakes and streams, the rules are more strict. Existing homes, of course, are grandfathered in. But if you’re building on shoreland anywhere in Wisconsin, you’ll need to meet these minimum standards:

  • Lot size. Lots served by a public sanitary sewer must have a minimum average width of 65 feet and a minimum area of 10,000 square feet. “Unsewered” lots must have a minimum average width of 100 feet and minimum area of 20,000 square feet.
  • Buffer strip. Clear-cutting of trees and shrubs isn’t allowed in the strip of land from the ordinary high-water mark to 35′ inland. One exception is for a 30′ wide path, for every 100′ of shoreline, down to the water. That allows you to reach the water, have a great view from your living room, and still protect your privacy. (And also, by the way, preserve the view of whoever lives across the lake.)
  • Setbacks. All buildings and structures must be set back at least 75′ from the ordinary high-water mark. Exceptions include piers and boat-hoists. And, if an existing pattern of development exists, some counties may have a “setback averaging” system that allow homes to be built closer to the water. On certain bodies of water, though, setbacks are increased to 125′ – or, in rare cases, up to 300′.

This is just an overview; for details on these and other shoreland zoning provisions, contact the DNR or county officials. Keep in mind, too, that existing homes are grandfathered in. When you buy one, you obviously can’t do much to change the lot size or setback. You can, however, take steps to restore the buffer of natural vegetation along your home’s waterfront.

But don’t try shoreline restoration just because it’s good for the environment. Do it if you’d like to increase your privacy, see more birds and wildlife, and catch mroe fish. (And also, by the way, spend less time mowing your lawn.)

Buying or selling in NW Wisconsin? Call Jean Hedren, Edina Realty NW Wisconsin Realtor. 218-590-6634. Or visit www.JeanHedren.com.

 

5 ways to hide the clutter while selling your home.

An important part of the home-selling process is showing it to prospective buyers. Unfortunately, that means tidying up even more frequently than you normally would, so buyers can focus on the house’s features rather than your household items. While it may not be possible to keep your home completely mess-free when you have children, below are some tips for keeping the chaos to a minimum:

Under-bed storage.If there’s enough space under their beds, encourage kids to keep their rooms tidy with rolling plastic or rattan storage bins. Then, use an oversized comforter or quilt—or strategically placed blankets—to hide the bins from sight.

Built-in storage.It may be impossible to keep things from leaving kids’ rooms and entering the living room. Utilize furniture with built-in storage, such as ottomans, or clear a drawer in the entertainment center specifically to tuck awayany roaming toys, games and other items.

Baskets and trunks.If you don’t have much built-in storage or discreet space to take advantage of, consider buying decorative trunks or baskets with lids that you can place around your home. 

Suitcases.If you need to store toys in the back of a closet, put them in suitcases that you can easily roll and move rather than bulky plastic bins. Suitcases are also a more discreet storage option than bins when buyers glance inside the closet to gauge how much space is available.

Donation.While your kids may feel attached to every toy, stuffed animal or plaything they own, it might be time to downsize the collection. Suggest that they start a donation pile, so that their unused items can bring joy to other kids instead.

This article is brought to you by Jean Hedren, a Certified Residential Specialist

Win on Price or Win on “Wow”

Sellers often ask me what they should do to get their home or cabin ready to sell.  Sometimes the answer is “nothing.”  Sometimes I offer advice about cleaning the garage or trimming the shrubs to make a better first impression.  Takes a couple hours, but doesn’t cost a cent.  And sometimes I suggest sellers invest in new light fixtures or a couple gallons of paint.  Less than a hundred dollars, but a whole new look.

In some cases, of course, it might be time for more major upgrades.  There’s no simple answer that’s right for everyone.  But if you do choose to make major upgrades, here are two things to keep in mind.

First, although doing it yourself is a great way to save money, be careful.  Over the years, I’ve seen more than one amateur remodeling job that actually reduced a property’s salability.  So if you’re more handsome than handy, know your limitations.

Second, choose projects that give the best return on your investment, and make sure they’ll appeal to the widest range of buyers.  This means, for example, that kitchen and bath upgrades are a better choice than whirlpools or saunas.  And no pink paint, even if it’s your favorite color.

All remodeling projects cost money; if you’re about to sell, the investment may not be worthwhile.  Occasionally however, some properties definitely benefit from a facelift.  And sometimes that extra “wow” can really help a property stand out from the crowd.

The bottom line?  It depends.  Every situation is different.  But in today’s market, you need to make sure your home is in the best possible condition. If it’s time to replace the roof shingles, do so. Fix a leaky faucet or cracked window. Make sure everything is in tip top shape. Clear out the clutter. If you want your property to sell within a reasonable amount of time, you can win on  “wow.”

If beauty is important in the current market; price is even more important.  If your home or cabin is in great condition but not priced appropriately, it won’t sell. Simple as that. Price is determined by the market, not by how much you think it’s worth or how much you need to get to make your next move.

Local market conditions determine the price at which a property will sell. A home that’s clean and in good repair and priced appropriately will stand the best chance of selling sooner rather than later.

Looking for NW Wisconsin homes for sale? As your NW Wisconsin Realtor, I’ll assist you with all of your home buying and selling needs. Start your search for local listings in the communities of Gordon, Wascott, Solon Springs, Barnes, Minong, and other area communities in Douglas County, Washburn County, Bayfield County, and Sawyer County. Lake homes, country homes, waterfront land, hunting land, recreation land. First time home buyers, repeat and move/up home buyers. Luxury homes.

Thinking of buying or selling real estate in NW Wisconsin? Call Jean Hedren, Edina Realty NW Wisconsin, 218-590-6634. Email: jeanhedren@edinarealty.com.