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4 Things to Know About Selling Your Charlotte Home in Winter

winter houseIn the Winter…really?

Yes, really! There’s a pervasive myth in real estate that Spring is the best time to sell your home. Of course, springtime has its charms: the weather, the leaves, the birds chirping, etc. But for many people the decision to sell isn’t on a flexible time frame, so if you need to sell in the wintertime there are plenty of reasons not to fret. Your Charlotte house CAN and WILL sell in the winter if you set yourself up for success! Step one is, of course, calling On the Move Charlotte to talk about everything from pricing to staging, but you knew that already…

If you’re considering listing your Charlotte home this cold-weather season, read on.

The Stats Support Winter Sales

Contrary to popular belief, homes may actually sell faster in winter than they do in warm weather! Why is this? Inventory is traditionally lower in wintertime and in Charlotte, inventory’s already at historic lows to boot. Some of the big real estate sites recently released statistics regarding cold weather sales and the results are staggering. Redfin found that listing in December, January, or February gave you the best chance of getting an above-ask offer, and listing in February gave you the best chance all year of selling within 90 days. You can’t argue with data.

The Right Listing Price is Critical

This lesson always holds true, but no more so than in winter. The good news is that fewer home shoppers mean more serious, focused buyers. The downside is that if you test the market and list high, you may have a smaller pool of buyers to turn off before you settle on the correct listing price. When spring rolls around and more homes hit the market your once-overpriced home will look stale by comparison, so talk to your Charlotte real estate agent about how to determine the right listing price for your home in winter.

It’s All About Presentation

fireplaceDon’t be scared by wet, gray weather! In the wintertime you’ve got a great opportunity to create a cozy oasis inside your home regardless of the weather outside. Particularly if your house doesn’t get great natural light, use the weather to your advantage. Light a fire, turn on ambient lights, and be sure the driveway and walkways are clear and inviting. If you’re selling around the holidays, be mindful of decorations and pare down your usual trimmings so you won’t create a cluttered effect. And best of all? Some Charlotte homeowners near Uptown find themselves with a peek-a-boo view once the leaves fall off the trees…play that feature up in your listing!

Be a Special Snowflake

One of the inarguable benefits of listing your home in the wintertime is more attention. Shoppers are more likely to pay close attention to the market and open house dates because they know inventory’s limited. Your agents will likely have less listings, too, meaning you’ll get treated to extra time and marketing attention. Listing your home in cold weather creates a sense of urgency in buyers who know there are dozens of others looking at your property simultaneously – use that kind of focus to your advantage.

 

Michelle picture 2015

Michelle Duyck, Listing Specialist

 

The key to selling successfully in winter? Work with a trusted Charlotte real estate agent! Our team specializes in Charlotte area listings and we’ll help you nail down the right price, market your property, and get it sold for a price you’re happy with. Call us today to talk shop.

 

Holiday Season is a GREAT Time to Sell Your Home

No, really!

There’s a pervasive myth out there that if you miss the critical spring or summer listing windows you may as well wait until next year to put your home on the market. That simply isn’t true! There’s some data behind it: Home sales are highest in the spring, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of willing, motivated buyers out there this time of year. In fact, there are plenty of good reasons to specifically wait until the last few months of the year to list your home. Here are just a few.

 

  • The very fact that people assume holiday season’s a ‘dead zone’ for real estate will work in your favor. There are actually less homes on the market this time of year which means your home’s more likely to attract attention and command a good price from buyers who need or want to buy now. Plenty of people  wait until January 1st to list their home to “get a jump start on next year’s market.” Why not beat the influx of inventory by listing now?
  • People plan moves at the beginning of the year. Especially for out-of-town hires set to start after the new year, the time to look at property is now, not later. Listing your home during the last few months of the year ensures your property gets seen by highly-motivated buyers who intend to move in by January 1.

holiday table

  • Emotions run high over the holidays which is a good thing for sellers. It’s festive, it’s cozy inside, and people can really imagine what living with their families in your home would be like. On top of that, family members are more often in town which is great news for showings and open houses. Additionally, people tend to have more time off to see properties, oversee inspections, and the like.
  • There are several financially-motivated reasons to sell over the holidays. Tax incentives abound for both you and the buyer, particularly if any incentives are set to expire on 1/1. Interest rates also tend to be very low towards the end of the year and lower interest rates typically mean buyers will offer a higher asking price.
  • Finally, selling now means you’ve got more flexibility later. Particularly if you can push your close off until late in the year (most people don’t want to actually move over the holidays), you can enter the market as a non-contingent buyer come January. That will give you more power when it comes to bidding, buying, and settling into your new place.

Leigh Bryant, Realtor®
Convinced yet? There are plenty of great reasons to list your home right now as we ease our way into the holiday season. New homes hitting the market this time of year get lots of attention next to stale summer homes and that’s great news for your bottom line. If you’re ready to try your hand at the surprisingly-hot holiday market here in Charlotte, give us a call!

 

 

7 Reasons NOT to Try “For Sale by Owner”

for sale by ownerWith a noticeable uptick in home sales in the Charlotte market, the On the Move Charlotte team has seen more and more “For Sale by Owner” signs posted around town. While it may seem tempting to try to sell your house yourself to save on listing fees, there are dozens more reasons why you’ll probably ultimately lose money (and time) by going it on your own.

We hear the same complaint from clients again and again. Many assumed it would be a breeze to sell their own home between online listings and the hot Charlotte real estate market. Time after time they come to us looking for help selling their house after weeks and even months spent lingering on the market to no avail.

Here are seven reasons you should always use a professional Realtor when selling your home. Forget “For Sale by Owner.” How about “SOLD by On the Move Charlotte?!”

7. You are not a real estate professional.

No matter how well you know your neighborhood and how many hours a day you’re on Zillow, you’ll never have the knowledge and experience a professional Realtor has. Between the legalities of selling a home, pricing specifics that aren’t available to the general public, and long-term market knowledge that only comes from experience there are plenty of reasons to pay a listing agent for their services. Afterall, you wouldn’t think of trying to perform your own root canal; you’d visit a licensed dentist! Is the sale of your home any less important?

6. Pricing is hard business.

Every homeowners knows what they’d like to get for their house but unfortunately sometims that number is rather far away from what the market actually dictates as the house’s value. A Realtor is exactly the objective eye you need to help determine what your house is really worth to buyers. Starting at a slightly lower list price now but selling in 5 weeks as opposed to 5 months can actually save you money. Let a qualified Realtor perform a CMA on your home before you ever think of listing.

5. Your home needs to be on the MLS.

The Multiple Listing Service is a crucial resource for real estate agents and the first place your buyers’ agents are going to look when they’re searching for homes. If you try to “Sell by Owner” you won’t be on the MLS listings (there are some ways around this but they can be very expensive!) and your home may not be as visible as it could be. Likewise, don’t count on your house being listed correctly in online databases like Trulia and Zillow.  Realtors work hard to manage your home’s visibility which is something you simply can’t do on your own.

open door4. A Realtor can help keep you safe.

Imagine your hesitation to list a piece of furniture online only to be bombarded with calls and emails from strangers looking to show up at your house. Using a Realtor helps keep your family out of harm’s way by providing a vetting system for potential buyers and eliminating the need for you to allow complete strangers into your home. Working with a Realtor ensures only qualified buyers ever get past your front door, protecting your family as well as your privacy.

3. Negotiating is difficult work.

You may consider yourself a keen negotiator but all bets are off when you’re suddenly asked to make a very emotional decision involving hundreds of thousands of dollars, all while keeping a good “poker face.” Realtors are specially trained in negotiation and have years of experience handling tricky situations between buyers and sellers. An objective third party is exactly what you need when you’re trying to get the most money possible for your house but you don’t want to lose a deal.

2. Marketing takes more than a “For Sale” sign.

Efficiently and accurately marketing your home is an incredibly specific process. Many “For Sale by Owner” sellers assume that because they live on a busy street people will surely see the sign and call! Not the case. Between making flyers, hosting open houses, networking, and phone calls, marketing a piece of property is hard work. Particularly if your home has any hard-to-love aspects (i.e. strange layout, dated kitchen, small yard), having an experienced Realtor to pitch the property is crucial. You may think your house is so great it will sell itself but even in the upturned Charlotte market, it won’t.

frustrated1. Being a real estate agent is a full time job.

Odds are, you’ve got enough on your plate without adding to it the tens of hours a week that come with selling your own home. Even in the best markets, selling a house takes work – contracts, showings, negotiations – everything about the home selling process means time. Consider the opportunity costs you’re incurring by giving up precious family, work, or leisure time to struggle through a home sale you could simply hire a professional to do. Isn’t your time worth it?

 

When you decide you’re ready to sell,
contact Leigh Bryant at On the Move
Charlotte to talk about your options.

Open House Sunday: Gorgeous Brick Ranch AND a Giveaway!

What’s better than finding your dream property during an open house? Receiving a Spring Goody Bag just for showing up!

 

Sunday, April 14th from 2:00-4:00pm, On the Move Charlotte’s newest team member Michelle Duyck is hosing an Open House in the Stonehaven Neighborhood. And the first 12 families to attend will walk away with a special gift just for touring the property!

Located in South Charlotte, 7328 Easen Court is totally updated, beautifully appointed, and competitively priced. The home has 4 bedrooms (including a master suite), 3 bathrooms, an office-wired garage, and a stunning backyard. Not only is the home’s deck large enough for hosting, the house is located on a quiet cul-de-sac which makes the property perfect for families.


Visit 7328 Easen Court this Sunday from 2-4pm. Call or email Michelle Duyck with On the Move Charlotte if you have questions about this home or other properties in Charlotte.

6 Things You Must Do Before Listing Your Home

Spring is upon us! It’s one of the best times of the year to put your house on the market and many areas (including Charlotte) are posting their best numbers in years. If you’ve been considering selling your home, there are a few things you must do to appeal to buyers even in the best of markets, most of which are quick and relatively inexpensive.

Here are six tips from the On the Move Charlotte team to help get your house sold!

 

6. Get an Inspection Before Going to Market.

Traditionally, a home inspection is only ordered once an offer is on the table. Smart sellers are now getting their own inspections before ever even listing their home – it’s a great way to identify issues that could sink a sale once a contract’s been drawn up. A couple hundred dollars spent on a quality inspection now could save you months of lost time if problems are identified down the road.

5. Staging, Staging, Staging.

It’s impossible to underestimate the effect of proper staging! Home buyers find it notoriously difficult to imagine what a home will look like filled with furniture, and staging’s a great way to transform ambiguous parts of your home into purposeful spaces buyers can appreciate. Nothing confuses buyers more than an empty shell of a home, particularly when compared to a warm, homey, lived-in house.

4. Know Your Market Well.

Of course, your real estate agent will have a thorough understand of your neighborhood and comparables in the area but as a seller it’s important to check out the “competition.” Walk your neighborhood with buyers’ eyes and try to look at your home objectively. Check out online listings of homes within a few miles and see how they’re presented. Even consider asking your broker to take you through a few comps to check out the way they show relative to your home.

3. Clear Out, Clean Up, and Freshen Your House.

You don’t have to undergo a complete kitchen renovation to get your home sold. Consider which aspects of your home are the most glaringly negative and tackle those first. Does your bedroom look totally outdated? Change out the curtains and bedspread. Carpet look worn and dirty? Bring in a steam cleaner. A few hundred bucks goes a long way when preparing your house for market. And don’t forget to ‘de-clutter’ your house before showing it: remove family pictures, clear off countertops and shelves, and of course, keep the house clean at all times in case of an impromptu showing!

2. Pay Attention to Curb Appeal.

The fastest selling houses are always attractive from the moment a buyer pulls up. Spring is a great time to plant a few colorful flower beds or bring in a lawn care pro to spruce up the grass. Keep the yard clear of debris like pinecones and branches to make it look maintenance-free. It may be expensive but is often worth it to consider having your home repainted for a fresh, clean look.

1. Listen to Your Broker.

Sometimes sellers have a hard time hearing constructive criticism regarding their home. Remember, your broker has your best interests at heart and they want to sell your home for you as much as you want it sold! If your broker is telling you something needs to change – be it your price, your dining room table, or the litter box – listen carefully. Experienced brokers know what buyers in your area are looking for and are typically the best source of information you can hope to have.

Picture of Leigh Bryant, Realtor - Keller Williams Realty

Thinking about listing your home? Call Leigh Bryant today at 704.513.3318 to find out more about your particular neighborhood and discuss your options as a seller. There’s no better time to sell than Spring!

“A Letter to Our Home”

Selling a family home is always a bittersweet process. While our clients are usually excited to make a change – bigger house for more children, less of a commute, larger lawn for the dog – most are sad to leave the homes they’ve been building memories in for years. At On the Move Charlotte, “well loved” homes are our favorite types of listings.

Take a look at this touching letter, written by our clients the Allards, as they prepare to move from the house they made a home…

____________________________________________________________________

Dear 8515 Tammaron Drive, 

Thank you so much for providing a solid and warm foundation for our family.  You have watched our family transform and grow from an ‘I” to a ‘We”.

When “I” found you I was a bachelor proud to be a home owner in one of the most progressive areas of Charlotte.  Being within walking distance to shopping and dining at Blakeney, Morrison YMCA, and some of the best schools in Charlotte were more than I could ever want and exceeded everything I needed. 

Your location was instrumental in helping me find my “best friend” and love of my life. Two people once separated by just a mile … now inseparable.

Your peaceful tree lined back yard was the place we shared our hopes and dreams. Whether it was designing our deck or discovering our “green thumb” you provided the perfect canvas.  You provided the perfect space for friends and neighbors to gather around the outdoor fire pit, roast marshmallows and watch some college football.

Most importantly you opened your arms when “we” were blessed with a child.  You provided the space to roam and walk countless laps downstairs to soothe our baby in need of sleep.

It will be hard to say “goodbye,” however, we must. Thank you!  To us you are and forever will be not merely a house but a “home!”

With love,
The Allards

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Picture of Leigh Bryant, Realtor - Keller Williams SouthparkClick here for a virtual tour of 8515 Tammeron Drive. Call Leigh Bryant at On the Move Charlotte to help you find your family’s “home sweet home” today.

 

Charlotte’s First Quarter Stats for 2013, Featuring Harold!

Harold, On the Move Charlotte’s unofficial mascot, is back to deliver Charlotte’s Q1 real estate stats for 2013. Some interesting data has already emerged this year concerning Charlotte, home sales, and the overall economy.

Take a look!

 

If you have questions about what Charlotte’s current market state means for your property sale or search, call the On the Move Charlotte team today at 704.516.3318.