Kimberly and John Solio - Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Posted by Kimberly and John Solio on 3/26/2017

Who says a home seller should be forced to wait many weeks or months to sell his or her residence? Instead, devote the time and resources to get your home ready for the real estate market today, and you can boost your chances of a quick home sale.

Ultimately, there are many ways to set up your residence for a quick sale, including:

1. Establish a Competitive Price

The first 30 days your home is available on the housing market are critical. But if you establish a competitive home price from the get-go, your house could sell just days after it hits the market.

To determine the right price for your home, you'll first want to evaluate the prices of residences similar to your own. By doing so, you'll be able to assess your house relative to the competition and set a fair price for your residence.

Also, consider how homebuyers may evaluate your residence when they first see it. If you examine the homebuyer's perspective, you'll be better equipped to understand your house's strengths and weaknesses and establish the right price for your home.

2. Focus on Improving Your Home's Curb Appeal

What does a homebuyer think of your residence when he or she views your house for the first time? Your house's curb appeal may impact your ability to enjoy the benefits of a quick home sale. If you spend some time enhancing your residence's curb appeal, however, you may be able to speed up the home selling process.

Simple home exterior improvements such as mowing the lawn and painting the front door could make a world of difference for home sellers. These enhancements may help your residence stand out from the competition and enable your house to generate widespread interest in no time at all.

3. Declutter and Depersonalize Your Home

Make it easy for homebuyers to envision what life would be like if they purchased your home by decluttering and depersonalizing your residence.

Taking down family photographs and putting away personal belongings may seem like a time-consuming process, but removing these items from your residence will enable homebuyers to look at your house as more than just another property. In fact, decluttering and depersonalizing your house will empower homebuyers to view your residence as a home that they could enjoy for years to come.

Selling a home can be challenging, but a real estate agent can help you overcome a wide range of home selling hurdles. This professional understands what it takes to accelerate the home selling process and will do everything possible to help you promote your residence to the right homebuyers consistently. Plus, your real estate agent can help you establish a competitive price for your house, find fast, effective ways to boost your residence's curb appeal and more.

Commit the necessary time and resources to prep your house for the real estate market. That way, you can ensure your residence stands out from others that are available and improve your chances of a quick home sale.

Posted by Kimberly and John Solio on 3/19/2017

For homebuyers, finding a dream home may require many days, weeks or months. However, when the big day finally arrives, you'll want to submit the right offer to ensure you can secure your ideal residence quickly.

Unfortunately, making the right offer on a home can be tricky. If you submit a proposal that is far below a home seller's expectations, you risk missing out on your dream home entirely. Or, if you submit an offer that is above your comfort level, you may wind up paying more for a house that it is actually worth.

So what does it take to make the right offer on a home? Here are three tips that every homebuyer needs to know to ensure he or she can submit the perfect offer on a residence.

1. Use Housing Market Data to Your Advantage

The internet is a powerful tool, particularly for homebuyers. And if you search for housing market data, you should have no trouble finding the information that you need to submit an offer that matches your budget and satisfies a home seller's expectations.

For example, a homebuyer who finds a two-bedroom home that he or she would like to buy should consider the prices of comparable houses in the area. Also, be sure to look at what other homes in the same neighborhood may be worth and tailor your offer accordingly.

A wealth of real estate market data is readily available across the web, and homebuyers who use this information to their advantage can submit a reasonable offer on a house at any time.

2. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

Although you may submit the best offer for a home, there is no guarantee that a home seller will accept your proposal if you lack the necessary financing. On the other hand, a homebuyer who receives pre-approval for a mortgage may be able to stand out to home sellers, and for good reason.

With pre-approval for a mortgage, you may be able to move through the homebuying process faster than other potential homebuyers. Thus, a home seller may choose your offer over others, as he or she will be able to minimize the risk that a deal could fall through due to a homebuyer's lack of financing.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent understands the ins and outs of both seller's and buyer's markets. Therefore, this real estate professional will offer tips and insights to ensure you can submit a fair offer on a residence.

Remember, your real estate agent is happy to help you in any way possible. And with this professional at your side, you can gain insights into the home seller's perspective. Plus, your real estate agent will be able to negotiate on your behalf to help reduce the risk of overspending for a house.

Find a real estate agent who boasts years of industry experience, and you can reap the benefits of unparalleled support throughout the homebuying journey.

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Posted by Kimberly and John Solio on 3/12/2017

ga_c79a1f75ca77b86d_spcms_0Colorful plants native to eastern and southeastern Asia, Camellias were exclusively cultivated in Japan and China for centuries, Camellias were introduced to Europe during the 17th century by the tea trade between countries. Camellli sinensis is the species of the plant used to produce tea. Where To Plant Camellias Camellias, a brilliantly colored flowering shrub that flourishes in dappled, overhead light, is an ideal plant for semi-shaded north-facing home gardens. In their native habitat, Camellias are an under-story plant found growing under the canopy of other trees at the edge of forests or wooded regions. Chose a well-drained location in the garden. Camellias can’t stand “wet feet” and will die in soggy ground with poor drainage due to the shortage of oxygen in the soil. Spring-flowering Camellias do best in neutral to slightly acid soil with a pH of between 5 to 7. If you have compacted clay or chalky alkaline soil, camellias with have a difficult time; leaves turn yellow and the plant fails to flower. Healthy camellias are an evergreen, retaining their deep green leathery leaves all year. Both the flowers and foliage add visual interest to the home landscape. Before planting camellias in the garden, do a soil test to determine pH levels. A pH level soil test kit is available form local home and garden supply centers. For a complete soil analysis, take a soil same to your local county extension office for a determination of pH content and a full report of what you can do to amend your garden soil. Camellias do best in regions of the country where the summers are not excessively hot and the air is moist and humid. Growing Camellias In Containers If you do not have the ideal soil or growing conditions: no worries. Camellias are perfectly suited to container cultivation and make excellent long-term patio or sunroom plants. If you wish to grow camellias in containers outdoors, find a sheltered location out of the wind, preferably on a west or north-facing wall. If you are in a northern climate subject to freezing weather, growing in pots is the way to go. Containers are brought indoors before the first frost and make a lovely houseplant through out the gray days of winter. When planting in containers, choose a pot large enough for the plant to grow, providing a weed-free loamy soil supplemented with well-aged herbivore manure (cow, sheep, goat, horse) to provide nutrients and to help hold moisture. Make sure the pot has excellent drainage. Positioning the pot on a rolling base makes it easy to move about the patio to take advantage of the best light and to move into the home or greenhouse when the weather cools. Replant every two to three years to a larger pot to allow for vigorous growth. When repotting, add fresh topsoil and aged manure to the potting mixture. An Abundance Of Flowers Camellias brighten shaded spots in the home landscape with bold bursts of color in shades of white, creamy yellow, sunshine yellow, pale pink, hot pink, lavender, orange, red, and burgundy. New hybrids offer a diverse array of variegated color combinations. Clip off spent blooms to encourage flower growth.

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Posted by Kimberly and John Solio on 3/5/2017

Holidays aren't the only time when you may find yourself looking for fun games to play at home. Birthdays, sleepovers, weekends and traditional family gatherings are other times when you'll love engaging in sport at home.

Turn your home into an entertainment zone

Board, sport and hand games like the ones in this article can strengthen family bonds. If you play the games in teams, relatives can spotlight their creativity and innovative thinking. But, these games aren't only for family. They are fun games that you can play at home with friends and neighbors. Depending on when you grew up, some of the activities may remind you of games you played as a kid.

Indoor bowling - You can buy indoor bowling balls, pins and game charts from department stores. Clear away space in the living room or, better, play indoor bowling in your finished basement. This game could become a family favorite with children and adults.

Monopoly - This board game has been played in houses throughout the United States since the early 1900s. About 750 million people have played Monopoly. Pull out the traditional game or introduce your family and friends to the ultimate banking edition. Looking for a great way to show young adults about banking and economic systems, play Monopoly.

Puzzles - Everyone from children to teens to adults loves to put a puzzle together. Puzzles challenge and reward.They are great brain exercises. More than that, puzzles depict amazing artistic images. Some people bind puzzles with tape or paste, then frame finished puzzles and hang them on a wall in their house.

Hide and seek - Although hide and seek is offers great outdoors fun, it's a game that works well indoors too. Play long enough for everyone to get a turn at being "it". This one is a hit with kids. If you play hide and seek indoors, place glass and other fragile items in a safe location.

Guess the movie - Of all the charades games, this one is a favorite. See how many movies you remember. You could guess the names of movies that were Oscar award winners. You could also guess the names of movies from certain genres or eras.

Cards - Card games like Spades, Tonk or Uno are great team builders. These games add fun to a Friday or weekend afternoon or evening. Holiday gatherings gain a spark with several fun rounds of card games. A kitchen or dining room table, several chairs and a good deck of cards is all that you need to start playing cards at home. Treat your family and friends to freshly squeezed orange juice and you may want to play cards for hours.

You don't need a large house to create lasting, loving and fun memories. Games, team sports and creative activities are great at bonding family, friends and neighbors. What's more, you can play games at home whether or not you have children. Houses with open floor plans invite a wide range of fun. But, if your house does not have an open floor plan, you can turn your living room,basement, yard or porch into an entertainment zone.

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Posted by Kimberly and John Solio on 2/26/2017

Have you ever watched a home television show and found yourself admiring the size of a kitchen? It’s easy to get drawn to tall, wide cherry wood kitchen cabinets, the type of cabinets that go from just below the ceiling to a foot above the kitchen sink. Before you know it, you’re actually counting the cabinets. You may also start to wish that your home had those very same kitchen cabinets.

Then, there’s the trendy kitchen island, stylish marble designs adding a welcomed décor to a kitchen. Wide bay windows bring in lots of natural sunlight. Rare ceramic or tile floor colors and designs truly set a kitchen apart, as do spacious pantries that are hidden behind a simple kitchen door.

These habits could make you hate your kitchen

Keep watching those home television shows and you might miss a lot of good in your house. You might start creating a mental list of “what I wish I had in my house” items. One of those items could quickly become the wish for a larger kitchen. But, a larger kitchen may not solve your space and design wants.

Certain personal habits could make a large kitchen too small for you. What you do regularly in your kitchen could also tarnish the appeal of the room. Among those habits are:

  • Not taking full advantage of the existing storage space in your kitchen – Loosely stack pots, pans, kitchen utensils and food boxes in your kitchen and you could lose a quarter of the space in your kitchen cabinets.
  • Using your kitchen pantry as a place to store your washer and dryer – In addition to making your kitchen feel too small, if you put your washer and dryer in your pantry, your kitchen could feel too hot and stuffy during spring and summer months.
  • Leaving expired or outdated canned foods in cabinets and cupboards
  • Using your kitchen counters as a storage area for automotive, household cleaning and reading products
  • Piling dirty or recently washed laundry on kitchen counters or on the floor in kitchen corners
  • Allowing pets to turn your kitchen into a play area
  • Limiting your dining room to a place that you only use during major holidays

Wide, open kitchen floor space gives you more room to cook, especially if you love to cook from scratch, using plenty of earth grown seasonings, spices and grains. This space can seem hard to come by if your house has a small kitchen. Yet, moving may not completely solve your kitchen space challenges, especially if you fill empty space at your house with decorations, boxes and clutter.

Do this and even a bigger kitchen may feel too small. Similar to how people who live in small homes learn to make the most of each square foot of space at their residence, train yourself to value and get the most from your entire kitchen. Make smart kitchen storage decisions. Prepare meals in your dining room and cook them in the kitchen. By not limiting cooking to your kitchen, you can see how your current kitchen can meet all of your food preparation needs.

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