Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Not so Obvious Reasons to Buy New

7 Reasons Your House Isn't Selling

7 Reasons Your House Isn't Selling U.S.News & World Report LPBy Geoff Williams | U.S.News & World Report LP – Tue, Mar 26, 2013 9:50 AM EDT... Housing is back. The market is starting to hum again--even roar in some areas, with demand outstripping supply. A new report from the National Association of Realtors shows that sales of existing homes in February saw the most growth in more than three years. But a stronger market isn't a guarantee that you can sell your house. There will always be reasons people won't buy what you're offering. If you've been having bad luck on the market, you may want to cross the street, hold up a mirror and take a good, long look. According to numerous housing experts, the most common reasons your house isn't selling are the following. 1. You're pricing it too high. "Without question, the No. 1 reason a home doesn't sell is price," says Bill Golden, an independent, Atlanta-based Realtor who sells for ReMax and has been in the real estate market for 26 years. "Sellers have an emotional attachment to their homes and tend not to objective about the true value." 2. Your house is kind of run-down. This doesn't mean you need to renovate your kitchen or fix your leaky roof. Well, you do need to fix the leaky roof, but you don't need to spend $40,000 on a new kitchen. "Sometimes it's as easy as doing some fresh landscaping or a fresh coat of paint in certain areas," says Golden. And you may think your house is a fixer-upper, and that you're likely to attract some handy do-it-yourselfers, but Alix Prince, a vice president and broker at Julia B. Fee Sotheby's International Realty, in Rye, N.Y., is skeptical. "Today's buyers are busy," she says. "They are looking for properties where they can 'unpack' without doing a lot in renovations or decorating. Properties that are in need of TLC are at a disadvantage since two-income families would prefer to spend their weekend relaxing rather than redecorating." 3. Your house isn't run-down, but it looks like it might be. "Any signs of water damage can be a huge turn-off to potential buyers. Take a water spot on the ceiling. The offending roof might have been fixed 15 years ago, but if the evidence is still there, buyers will assume there's still a problem," says Jessi Hall, a real estate writer for the Columbia, Mo.-based Veterans United Home Loans, which provides home loans to veterans. "Water damage makes buyers understandably jumpy, and can keep a home on the market indefinitely." 4. There's too much "you" in the house. It sounds cruel, but you want to sell your house to other people, who can imagine themselves living in your house. Simply put, you are not them. "This is perhaps the most common problem of all," says Joshua Mogal, founder of eco+historical homes, a San Francisco-based company that specializes in renovating historic homes using eco-friendly materials. "Buyers rarely have the same tastes as sellers." Jessica Edwards, a Coldwell Banker Real Estate consumer specialist and agent in Wilmington, N.C., agrees, saying, "If you love the beach and palm trees, putting a palm tree in every single room may not be fit for everyone." What to do? Mogal and Edwards recommend moving your stuff, or at least some of it, out of the house and painting the rooms neutral colors so the buyer's imagination can start taking flight. 5. You are inflexible. No offense, but maybe you aren't showing your house off enough? If you aren't using a real estate agent and work away from your home, your time might be limited, of course. But you should try to make your house as accessible and available as possible for a Realtor and a potential homebuyer to easily drop by and take a tour (which means having the place clean, too). "Having your home be shown only by appointment or only at designated times will severely cut down on the number of showings you get," says Golden, "and if the house isn't getting shown, it isn't going to get sold." 6. You aren't advertising your home properly. If you aren't a photographer or much of a writer, you may be giving your potential buyers an underwhelming idea of what it would be like to live where you live, according to Edwards. Conversely, she adds that you don't want your photos and prose to blow away homebuyers too much, if your house can't live up to what you're posting online or in brochures. "A description that doesn't meet a homebuyer's expectation when visiting the property in person may also contribute to a failed site," Edwards says. 7. Your house is poorly located or poorly planned. As you suspect, there's really not much you can do about either problem. It's just a reality that some homeowners have to deal with, says Mogal, who adds that one problem you may be able to fix relatively easy is if the lot has a major drawback. Maybe the yard is extremely small, or there's an awkward hill that makes it challenging to mow a lawn. In that case, "great landscaping could be helpful," says Mogal. If you are having trouble selling your home, and you don't think it's due to any of the aforementioned reasons, Golden recommends bringing in a neutral, objective third party to take a look at your house and make suggestions. "There are things such as a bad odor in the home, a dog or cat smell, or mildew, or tidiness of the home" that can affect how a potential buyer is going to view your property, says Golden. Even little fixes, he says, like keeping the blinds open to let in more light or adjusting the temperature so it's less cold or warm can make a buyer more optimistic that they could have a future where you live. If you don't or can't do that, you might as well pull up a chair and get comfortable. You aren't going anywhere

Sunday, March 24, 2013

10 Reasons Jeri Patrick Should be your Agent

In today’s complex and difficult real estate market you need a professionals who will do whatever it takes to market and sell your home. Jeri Patrick has a team with an established history of success of selling homes in and around the Savannah Area. Jeri specializes in the home buying and selling process and is available to answer any of your real estate questions, provide information and handle any obstacles that may arise. So if you are looking for homes for sale in Savannah, Richmond Hill, Rincon, Pooler, and the surrounding lowcountry then you’ve come to the right place!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

STOP! Throwing away money!

Glenwood Grove We have just rolled out our newest town homes with garages. They are priced to SELL! Owner’s suite on main, Study upstairs, Open Kitchen. Private back yard. Time to personalize. No Maintenance, no flood insurance, no city tax with convenient Berwick location. We have just rolled out our newest town homes with garages. They are priced to SELL! Owner’s suite on main, Study upstairs, Open Kitchen. Private back yard. Time to personalize. No Maintenance, no flood insurance, no city tax with convenient Berwick location.

Home Energy Audits

Customers can learn ways to save up to 30 percent on their annual energy bill through Georgia Power’s In-home or Online Energy Audit. • In-home Energy Audit – Georgia Power will perform a free in-home audit. To schedule, please call 1-800- 524-2421 or visit

A benefit to Buying New Foam Insulation

Partial or Full application will provide the most energy efficient home possible with the lowest possible air leakage. The expense for this type of insulation material is higher, but the pay back is much faster. PLUS the interior comfort levels are very uniform on both the first and second floors and the AC System in the attic operates in near ideal temperatures (mid 80's) for maximum efficiency.

Think Ahead and Get it Right!

To have the new home of your deams, ANY and ALL specifications should be in your purchase contract. Nail Down Hardwood Floors - The reason this makes the list is the fact that if your new home is a 2-story your entire staircase will be affected. If a rug or tile is in front of the bottom step than adding a nailed down wood floor after your home is built will mean your bottom step will be about 1.5" shorter then all the rest of your steps. Builders always determine step height by the floor material that is in front of the staircase. IF you plan on adding wood floors after you close then you will want the builder to make sure they add wood floors in the hallway where your staircase is located. This way you will avoid the "short step" problem later on when you complete your Hardwood Floors. Single Garage Door Width - Don't let your builder put in 8' doors!!!! You need 9' or you will have to fold your vehicle mirrors getting in and out! 8' doors might work if you own a VW Bug or a Fiat, but not with SUV's or Pickups, which just happen to be the vehicle of choice for many Homeowners. This needs to be known before the slab forms are put in place. Garage Door Height - Want to park a boat or F250 that is lifted? Make sure you design in an extra high garage door. Its easy enough to do if the builder knows about it before Framing begins or better yet BEFORE you sign your contract. Garage Length and Width - Well if you are going through the trouble of adding a taller door then you want to make sure you are at least 22' long if you are to park your F-250 or similar sized vehicle. Sink in Utility Room - Make it as deep as possible. Plan before foundation is poured so plumbing and drains can be set. Adding a Bathroom - Sometimes some floorplans just don't work because they lack a needed bathroom. This addition needs to be known before the cement is poured. An added bath in a Formal area or Study area can be very important if you have a home based business or ever expect to convert this space to a bedroom. Salad Sink in Kitchen Island - Having a 2nd sink in the Island helps during food prep and clean up. Don't forget a 2nd sink disposal. Refrigerator or Freezer Power Plug in Utility Room or Garage - This must be added during the Frame Stage. This is important because this line needs to be on its own dedicated circuit to prevent breaker trips of other outlets. Recessed "Can" Lighting - Especially on 2-story homes, you really need to look at this closely as many homes have insufficient lighting. It is very expensive and difficult to install additional 1st floor can lighting into homes that have a 2nd story above without making a lot of holes in sheet rock. This needs to be added no later than Frame Stage. Sconce Wall Lighting - In Media Room or elsewhere, must be completed during Frame Stage. Sconce Staircase Lighting - Add at Frame Stage. Exterior MOTION Lights - Got a place around the house where you want a MOTION light? Now is the time to put that in. The builder will credit you the fixture you don't install and price out the motion light fixture. Flat Panel Screens - Cable and power drops in Bedrooms, Master Baths, Garage or any other "Special" location that will allow you to mount a Flat Screen without having unsightly power and cables running up your walls. Add at Frame Stage. Also consider if you want an outdoor monitor as plugs and video cables can be installed cheaply when building versus retrofitting. Video - Power Drops for Media Room Front Projector complete during Frame Stage. Christmas Light Outlets - Installed under roofline in the Soffits. These convenience plugs are added at Frame Stage. For added convenience add an indoor on/off switch and MAKE SURE this outlet is on its own individual circuit breaker in your main breaker panel. Outdoor Spotlights - Tree Lights or exterior house lighting. Frame Stage. Choose low voltage lights to help save on electric cost. Built-Ins - These may include Kitchen Cabinet Garbage pull outs, Wine Lattice wind rack, Pasta Bins, Butler Pantry Cabinets, kitchen "bread box," Book Cases, and entertainment built-ins. Must be known a few weeks before cabinets will be installed. Butler's Pantry would have to be designed in at early planning stage. Shower Head in Master that is HIGH ENOUGH!!! - You'll be glad you added this one at the Frame Stage during Plumbing installation. Extended Patio - This needs to be planned before the slab is poured especially if you want the Patio extension to be part of the foundation structure. You can always add afterwards, but be prepared to tear up sprinkler lines and sod. Seems to me it would be cheaper to include day one! Outdoor Gas Line to Grille - Add at Frame Stage. Extended Driveway - Handy for added parking opportunities, this must be decided before foundation is poured. It is cheaper for builder to add this from the Cement Truck then to mix up individual bags afterwards PLUS all the Cement matches. Extra Power Drops in Garage - These may include a speaker drop, video drop or extra outlets in construction benches. The Garage is a UTILITY ROOM so give it MORE UTILITY! Like to spend time in the Garage? Maybe these features will help! Add at Frame Stage. Attic Storage - Locate a logical space in your attic for storage. At Frame Stage. To do one better identify an area under roof that can be included into the interior space. If you insulate this space it will help keep storage items within a more tolerable temperature range WITHOUT adding AC and Heating ducts. Better home builders include this in their plans. Georgia is not the kind of place to store valuable items in an attic that is not temperature controlled. Just a few upgrades many Home Buyers tend to overlook.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

X sounds bad, and A sound great, right?

Flood Zone X is a low/moderate flood risk area. Here's how FEMA describes zones the different flood zones. "Areas outside the 1-percent annual chance floodplain, areas of 1% annual chance sheet flow flooding where average depths are less than 1 foot, areas of 1% annual chance stream flooding where the contributing drainage area is less than 1 square mile, or areas protected from the 1% annual chance flood by levees. No Base Flood Elevations or depths are shown within this zone. Flood Insurance purchase is not required in these zones." Zones A and V have the higher risk. Zone D is undetermined. Because Savannah and the Tri Counties are Coastal areas it is always best to carry flood insurance whether it is required or not. For more local information you can visit