It seems like February is always a month for down time. Coming off the holidays, people make resolutions for the new year and ready to start off with new goals and activities. But, then February arrives and things fade away while people tend to focus on the next exciting time, Spring Break! Sellers should be prepping their house if they plan to sell. Buyers should be searching online for inventory in order to get familiar with the market if they plan to buy. February is an ideal month to contact a Realtor who will work for you! It gives the consumer plenty of time to make plans and get tasks completed. With our consultations, we prefer starting early so that we can thoroughly review the needs of our clients and spend time making a good plan and getting organized.
Wow! What a challenge we’ve had to the start of 2018! These frigid temperatures have caused havoc to housing with overworked furnaces having heating issues and water lines freezing. The below zero temps cause spikes to utility bills, too, because electricity and gas are constantly fighting the battle of cold air. Things you can do to help relieve some worry and expense are to close crawlspace vents, seal around doors and windows, leave cabinet doors open so warm air can reach all pipes, and keep your home closed up as much as possible. Even coming and going through the garage door lets in so much cold air! We’ve even experienced water lines outside of the home are frozen, which falls to the service provider. And, depending on what company that might be, they may work to thaw the lines or they may ride it out and wait until temperature raise. It’s frustrating for everyone. Residents without water and service techs battling the weather outside of their control have to do what they can which may not be enough. Doing everything possible in advance can help avoid bigger problems but there is no guarantee it won’t happen. Our Maintenance Dept has been working overtime on heating issues and frozen pipes. IF you need assistance, please email: Repairs@CallChoiceRealty.com and we’ll get you on the list!
Just a quick reminder, the office of Choice Realty & Management is closed on Monday, January 1 and Tuesday, January 2. During our closed hours, our emergency maintenance phone extension is available for tenants in need of emergency repair.
Please remember, as we have extreme cold weather, close crawlspace vents, keep warm airflow around plumbing along outside walls and keep a small stream of water flowing on any faucets that tend to freeze.
We are looking forward to working with our customers and clients in 2018.
Let’s be blunt….. if you are not a responsible pet owner who can properly care for your pet, you shouldn’t have one! With these winter frigid temperatures, it is critical to keep pets indoors. If it’s too cold for a human, it’s too cold for an animal!! Please make sure your pets have shelter, food and water. The last statistic we heard said that 65% of people have a pet. We are pet lovers, too! And, that’s why, proper care of your pet is important to us.
Our staff will be celebrating Christmas and our office will be closed on Monday, December 25th & Tuesday, December 26th. And, we’ll be closed on New Year’s Day and January 2nd for some fun celebrations, planning and setting goals for 2018. ??
Whether you plan to stay in your home for another year or put it on the market soon to sell, the winter is actually a great time to do home maintenance projects and chores that people tend to delay. For instance, do you look at the caulk around the tub/shower when cleaning? Plan a weekend day and make yourself a to-list. Taking an extra hour while cleaning bathrooms to remove the caulk, clean thoroughly, then apply fresh caulk will make a huge difference in appearance. De-cluttering is also a chore that must be done prior to listing for sale but can be refreshing if you plan to stay. Cleaning out closets and drawers, getting rid of old clothes and any items never used, and organizing shelves can free up space and make your home feel larger and cleaner. Painting is also an easy project that can give a whole new look to a space and it is really an inexpensive project that can make the biggest change. Not only does it give a clean, fresh look but colors can update a room and even change the entire feel for function. If you do plan to sell soon, choosing paint colors that are neutral but give warmth are best, such as light tans, warm greys, or even shades of blue. While it can be fun to add vibrant colors, you would need to neutralize if you decide to sell later. None of these projects take a bunch of money or time, making these tasks top of the list to accomplish this winter!
Please note, we’ll be closed on 11/23 and 11/24 for the Thanksgiving holiday.
We are thankful for our customers and clients and appreciate the opportunity to work with all of you!
Just when we didn’t think the usual surge would happen, here we are with a very busy week of buyer activity! The ‘surge’ I speak of is the market activity that tends to happen between Labor Day and Thanksgiving, mostly in October, so buyers can get moved in before Christmas and/or New Year’s. But, this year, September and October have been slower than previous months, leaving us to wonder if the sales activity was wrapping up early for the year. However, this week, Choice Realty has processed several purchase agreements and showing requests and we are excited to see this fresh activity!
I’ve had a few sellers contact me this week as well. They are thinking of listing but want to take the holiday time to prepare their houses for the market. I always like when sellers contact us early so that we can help them with preparations. Sometimes, we may have buyers already identified for a new listing who may be in a lease so the timing could work out for both parties. And, sometimes, we can intercept preparations where one task may not make a difference but another task is desperately needed. Having a Realtor guiding through this process can be a cost-savings, a better return on investment, and initiate a quicker sale!
As we work with buyers, sellers, tenants and investors, we have four core values that we keep in focus.
We believe these qualities will allow us to serve our clients and customers with excellent customer service.
So many factors impact the sales market activity. We’ve noticed things from gas prices to weather can affect the activity on a day to day basis and during each month. In September, Monroe County saw a decrease in new listings by 7% from the same month in 2016 but we closed 9% more transactions in Sept2017 than in Sept2016. The good news is that we are seeing an increase in the average sales price, nearly 8%. Inventory remains low and is the main cause of the slow down in sales activity. If you’re thinking of selling, there is less competition now than you’ll most likely see in the Spring! Buyer traffic is slow, which could be affected by the upcoming holidays. Although interest rates remain low, we are expecting to see interest rates rise over the next year. This may be another reason for acting sooner than later! Don’t let the holidays and winter weather delay your house-hunting and house-selling opportunities!