Monday, May 19, 2014

Finding A Tech Savvy Realtor

The modern day housing market has changed with home buyers typically having the upper hand. Years back, home shoppers had to call an agent to check out local listings and schedule a tour of homes.

Now with technological advances and the Internet, almost anyone can search for new or older resale homes, apartments, condominiums, and townhouses in the privacy of their own home via their home PC, smartphone or laptop.

If you want to sell your home, it certainly makes sense to hire a realtor that knows how to effectively market your home to today's buyer. A recent survey of home buyers conducted by The Real Estate Book discovered that fifty percent of them considered mobile tools to be an essential part of their home search. And of those, 98% percent thought their mobile device was a valuable tool with 78% of them viewing photos and videos of homes on their device. What is interesting for you to know is that 68% sought out a listing agent based on their mobile search.

Given that more half the buyers employ technology to do their shopping, it is imperative that you hire a reputable, market and tech-savvy agent that will have a much better chance of selling your home quickly and for the price you want. What makes a realtor tech-savvy? Here are a few tried and true factors to look for when selecting a technologically skilled agent.

Check For Their Website - Home shoppers are going to click on one of the first websites they see, so if a potential agent is not showing up when you do a search, chances are home buyers will not find them either. Poorly constructed websites will be passed over by buyers making you lose out on many potential leads. If the agent's website offers you to 'shop' at your own personal ease and enjoyment, know that buyers will be probably feel the same way as you do and stick around.

Social Media Setup - Simple interaction in the social sphere shows that your realtor knows how important online communication is to modern day buyers. After all, a good agent can utilize tools like Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, or YouTube to highlight your home and further communicate their thoughts and ideas with a wider audience.

Solid Home Search Option - The most important tool for any truly tech-savvy realtor to have is a fantastic home search option. Remember, almost 100% of the market is turning to online searches to find a new home. So if you're agent doesn't have an easy-to-use search, you will be missing out on an unbelievable amount of traffic.

Presentation And View-Ability Factors - How does the prospective agent's use of technology properly market properties similar to yours? Are images presented in a tasteful, user-friendly way and/or do they offer professional-looking video tours of homes? For higher-end properties, are aerial video and professional photography used? Poor quality or grainy images, difficult navigational tools, long-loading applications will deter buyers from coming back to your realtor's website.

Make sure all tools available on the listing agent's website are mobile app friendly as well. Ask if their website will has been converted to HTML 5, which ensures all images, videos, and other information can be easily viewed on tablets, smartphones, PCs or any other device without installing special software. In other words, buyers will be able to see the same easy-to-navigate site on any device quickly and easily.

There are other small benefits, such as your realtor being able to update you via email or text message, so you can stay updated even if you aren't able to be involved in a full-fledged conversation. Finding a realtor that knows how to use the Internet, social media websites, and mobile applications can be easy if you think like a buyer. By "Mock" shopping online using web tools and thinking like a potential buyer looking for a house like yours, you can find a tech savvy agent to market your home.

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Orignal From: Finding A Tech Savvy Realtor

Friday, December 13, 2013

Are you friggatriskaidekaphobic?

Today is Friday the 13th. Twenty million Americans are feeling unlucky today — people who suffer from friggatriskaidekaphobia.
. It's a 99-year-old word made up of a combination of the Norse and Greek roots words for "fear" and "Friday" and "13."

Folklorists say that the phobia itself is a combination of two separate superstition-induced phobias — 13 is unlucky in much of folklore and so is Friday. Whenever the first day of a month is a Sunday, there's going to be a Friday the 13th that month.

The number 13 has been unlucky for a long time. Numerologists point out that 12 is a complete number in Judeo-Christian culture: There are 12 months in a year, 12 hours on a standard clock, 12 Apostles, 12 tribes of Israel, 12 days of Christmas, 12 eggs in a dozen, and so on. There's something unsettling, even repugnant, about going just a bit "beyond completeness" — that's how academic folklorists rationalize the superstition, at least. The vast majority of skyscrapers have no 13th floor, and room number 13 is missing from many modern hotels as well.

As for Friday, it's unlucky in a handful of ancient cultures. In Christianity, it's the day of Jesus' crucifixion.

There have been 13 films in the Friday the 13th series.

There are always the traditional folk remedies to ward off bad luck today: burning any socks with holes in them, or eating some gristle while standing on your head, or climbing to a mountaintop. And here's the good news: There's only one Friday the 13th this year and one next year. Some years can have up to three of them.

Thanks to The Writer's Almanac for this information.

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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Tips On Downsizing For Buyers

Is it time to downsize and simplify life? Are you ready to cut down on mortgage payments to ease financial burdens? Are you concerned with the cost of living increasing to the point you will not be able to afford your bigger home? Do you want to spend more time relaxing rather than slaving away on home maintenance?

Although most buyers want the most house for the lowest price, you might find the best deal by looking at a smaller-than-average home with smaller-than average monthly costs. It is easy to see that smaller homes are easier on the budget, have less environmental impact, and take up less time to maintain.

The major first step before buying is to know why you want to move into a smaller home so you will not be saddled with regret. There is a luxury side to low maintenance and a simpler lifestyle, so if you are ready to cut any emotional ties to your big house and reduce your possessions, you are on your way.

Know Your Living Costs

Start by creating a list of expenses and finding out what you can or want to truly afford. Whether you are on a limited budget, retiring or facing a drastically reduced income, you will need to know how much of your income is available for mortgage payments, utilities, lawn care, maintenance, and property taxes. Also be mindful of other monthly expenses like Homeowner Association fees and insurance. Many websites have mortgage calculators that provide mortgage and insurance payments to assist you.

Know How much Space You Will Need

Make a list of all pieces of furniture, appliances, sports equipment, tools, and household wares you cannot live without. It does not make sense to keep them just to store somewhere else unless you want to pay a monthly storage fee. The least desired possessions can be cleared out in advance, making your move that much easier. Determine how much space will be needed to have easy access to the most utilized things you own. A garage can double up as car space and workout room, for example.

Know What Size Home You Need

Depending on your lifestyle, your smaller home needs to work for you. If you prefer to be indoors most of the time, buy a home with more inside space with smaller outside space. If you love the outdoors, a small house with space for a large deck or pergola might be a good choice. If you are planning to have a home office sometime in the future, carefully consider the floor plans and flow of traffic. First-time home-buyers need to know how long they plan to live in the smaller home before the necessity to increase bedrooms arises. If you are retired, you might want a smaller kitchen but a roomier bathroom, or if you are not home much, you may want a larger bedroom.

Know How Much Yard You Want To Maintain

Postage-stamp yards have their advantages because they are easy to keep, whether you pay a neighbor kid to mow it or do it yourself with a small push mower. Watering a smaller space of grass keeps the water bill down as well. Keep in mind there are many ways to make yards more spacious, so do not pass up what appears to be a small lawn.

Know What Energy Efficient Appliances The Home Offers

Because smaller homes have less expense and up-front costs, making them energy-efficient does not require a behemoth budget. Sellers often update their smaller homes by installing new heating and air-conditioning systems and appliances with the latest energy-efficiency ratings to attract buyers. With all-around smaller costs for furnishings and utilities, you may be able to afford higher-end, state-of-the-art appliances.

A 2011 study by the National Association of Home Builders showed smaller homes are moving faster in today's tough economy because of their smaller price tags and lower ongoing monthly costs. Find a realtor that is knowledgeable in smaller homes that are Eco-Friendly to help you find a home suited to your needs. If you find several homes, do cost comparisons for taxes and utilities, to help you narrow down to the best fit for you.