This animal rescue organization is having an event in the same town as our 5572 Cerro Norte, El Sobrante listing. We love supporting animal rescue efforts and introducing soon-to-be residents to the virtues of these organizations before they even move in. Are you available this Saturday night?
The Bay Area real estate market continues its scorching pace as we enter the second quarter of 2015. Supply is extremely limited, with properties all over the Bay Area attracting multiple offers. Here in Hayward, a recent listing of ours attracted 14 offers the first few days it was on the market…the numbers are higher in the South Bay and Peninsula. What is a buyer to do? Well first, make sure you have a good agent…it is more important than ever to have someone on YOUR side when purchasing a home. During these competitive markets, price is just one consideration…the terms of the purchase contract are equally if not more important. Some bidders place ridiculous offers price-wise just to get into contract, knowing the property won’t appraise and they will then be able to negotiate the sales price later. Not cool. Don’t work with an agent that plays that game, as a good listing agent won’t bite and will protect the sellers from such manipulation.
Professional ethics are also in danger of being compromised when the competition is so fierce, so be wary. Hire only a professional, full-time REALTOR that is a member of the National Association of REALTORS, the California Association of REALTORS, and adheres to the NAR professional Code of Ethics. For more information about the market (a February article that is all the more true today) click on the link below.
Rent control is quite controversial in terms of its effectiveness in controlling rents as well as stifling the development of needed rental property inventory. A recent article (link below) goes into more detail about the push for rent control as Bay Area rents skyrocket. Is the answer rent control or more liberal approval of new housing to meet continued strong demand for housing in our area?
Exterior paint color may be one of the most important factors in enhancing your home’s curb appeal. There are many factors to consider when choosing an exterior paint color, especially when resale is your goal. It is important to understanding neighborhood standards as well as your home’s style, size, construction materials and the color of the roofing.
According to a national survey conducted by Sears Weatherbeater Paints, the most popular color for a home’s exterior is white. The survey found that nearly 40 percent of those polled said they would prefer white as the primary color of their homes exterior. The survey concluded that the least favored colors were yellow and red. White paint can make the outside of a home look more expansive and can bring light into a shady yard. You can accentuate trim and other architectural details on a white house by painting them in another subtle, but noticeable, color. There are many variations of the white paints, from stark white to more cream colors, so there is a lot of flexibility when choosing a paint in this family of colors.
If you want to make your home look newer and more modern, take a look at the colors being used on new housing developments in your area. Typically, newer homes are painted in light, neutral shades, including light tones of tan, clay, cream, gray or beige. Shades of white are often used on the trim. You can incorporate a splash of color by painting the door a contrasting shade. For instance, a deep gray-blue door looks stately on a light-gray home with white trim. Neutrals can be pretty boring, so spice up the palette you select to emphasize and highlight features of your home while still staying consistent with neighboring homes.
Generally speaking, light colors are the best bet for painting a home for resale; however, if your home is in an older neighborhood, a light color may make it look out of place or less charming than the traditionally painted homes around it. Medium to dark shades of tan, gray, blue and brown may be the most common in established neighborhoods. Homes built from brick or stone often have trim painted in dark red, deep green or Williamsburg blue.
Drive around your neighborhood and community to look at other homes to see what works. You don’t have to copy someone else’s choices, but you might see something that works really well with your home’s design too. Finally, paint is relatively inexpensive, so if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.
Lingering odors can affect how much you enjoy your home or how much you might be able to sell it for.
Whether your family caused the odor in your home or you inherited a smelly room from the previous owner, you can get rid of it using a few proven methods. Avoid making the mistake of spraying an air freshener to cover up a bad smell. While it can take time to eliminate lingering odors from smoke, cooking, pets or mildew, it is possible to deodorize your home and introduce pleasing scents.
- Clean your home thoroughly using a strong cleaning solution and cleaning rags. Pay attention to places you don’t normally clean, such as inside cabinets, under sinks and along window sills. Wipe down the walls, baseboards, doors and counter tops with a 1 to 10 solution of bleach and water.
- Air out each room by opening the windows. Choose a nice day with a breeze to help move air throughout your home. Airing out the rooms will help release odors in curtains, carpets and furniture. Keep the windows open for at least an hour, or longer for particularly heavy odors.
- Pull odors out of the carpet and furniture by sprinkling baking soda onto fabric surfaces. Allow the baking soda to sit on the surfaces for several hours, even overnight if you can. The longer you leave the baking soda on, the greater the absorption. Vacuum the baking soda from the carpet and furniture, using a vacuum cleaner with a new bag. Scented baking soda products are also available, but use sparingly…they can be overwhelming!
- Fill 2 to 4 shallow bowls with fresh coffee grounds, depending on the size of the room. Shut the windows and the door to the room, then leave the bowls overnight to let the coffee grounds absorb the odor. Throw the coffee grounds away the next day. Repeat one more night with fresh coffee grounds for particularly stubborn odors.
After you think your place is smelling better, invite a friend or two over to have them do an honest sniff test. Our own noses get used to odors we are around, so get an objective schnozzola to do the test. Then be sure to bbq your next salmon OUTSIDE, not in the house!
The real estate market here locally continues to sizzle, with 10+ offers on an available listing not being uncommon.
Having the right agent is all the more important when trying to buy in this market. We recommend you select an agent that is a full-time real estate professional, a REALTOR who abides by the National Association of REALTORS code of ethics, and someone who knows the local micro-markets to write up the best possible offer. Winning the bid for a property isn’t just about the highest offer, but also the terms under which the purchase contract will be executed. This is really where the experience and reputation of your agent can be the deciding factor in which buyer’s offer gets accepted.
It is also important that your agent is well-know in the industry and marketplace, because even in this technologically driven world, relationships matter when negotiating a real estate purchase. Agents that are involved in their profession, attend local professional marketing meetings held throughout the week, and those with significant internet and social media presence are often the most likely to get you into the home of your dreams. Now, more than ever, selecting the right agent could mean the difference between packing up to move to your new home or the stress of not knowing where you might land next…
There will always be those who want to live in the “City” and those that prefer the “Country” life. Some just can’t decide…the link below provides some interesting discussion about both lifestyles. Take your pick! http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/aug/18/live-in-city-or-country