Budget Friendly Exterior Updates

Landscaping

Whether you are planning a spring home listing or just want to spruce up your digs, there are lots of ways to improve your home’s exterior and curb appeal without blowing your budget.

For FREE you can:  

  • Trim trees and hedges – particularly those close to the house.
  • Remove dinky lawn ornaments cluttering the yard or garden.
  • Edge the lawn for a sharper look
  • Wash the windows // clean the gutters

For LOW COST you can:

  • Paint the front door
  • Update the house numbers
  • Plant a few annuals or hang a basket of flowers
  • Replace the welcome mat
  • Freshen mulch in the flower beds

For UNDER $100 BUCKS you can:

  • Replace dated exterior lighting
  • Replace door hardware
  • Paint or stain the front porch or deck
  • Plant a shrub or small decorative tree
  • Install soaker hoses for your flower beds

For UNDER A THOUSAND BUCKS (or so) you can:

  • Replace the front door
  • Hire a lawn service to whip your lawn into shape
  • Plant several trees
  • Build a raised garden bed for flowers or vegetables
  • Install simple shutters on front facing windows

If you are planning spring or summer landscaping or home exterior projects and wondering which ones will get you the biggest bang for your buck on a future sale, I’m happy to share what I’ve learned in my 21+ years in Colorado Real Estate. Happy planning, happy planting and happy spring!

Jack Meyers

The Meyers Group
jackestate@aol.com 
303.263.3050
Twitter: @jackestate

Quality Control Tips from a Home Builder

Even when you purchase a brand new home, there are items to pay special attention to in order to make sure your home has been finished well and every detail accounted for. 

Examining a Home

We recently came across a nifty checklist a particular home builder uses to ensure customer satisfaction and to double check that all the details are taken care of. Here are a few highlights that can be applied to any home – whether your purchase is a new build or existing construction. These are items you may want to take a peek at as you shop for homes, or may want to examine more closely at during your home inspection:

  • Are all appliances functioning properly? Run the dishwasher, turn on the microwave, see if the ice/water functions are working in the fridge door, etc.
  • Are all cabinet doors/drawers in the kitchen and bathroom functional?
  • Flush each toilet and turn on every faucet to ensure proper function. 
  • Are all light fixtures functioning? Are there any tough to reach fixtures in need of cleaning or light bulbs? What about exterior lighting?
  • Inspect stairs/railings for secure installation.
  • Inspect ceilings and walls for sagging, bowing or signs of water damage. 
  • Test the heating, cooling and water heating unit to ensure proper function. 
  • Are there any signs of excess moisture in the basement or attic?
  • Are gutters and downspouts properly installed to direct water a minimum of 4 feet away from the house? 
  • Does the ground around the foundation slope away from the house? 

None of these details are make-or-break in terms of a home purchase, and in a Seller’s Market like Denver is currently experiencing, you may have a challenging time getting the Seller to agree to fix items of this nature if they turn up on the property inspection. Whether you cover the cost of repair or replacement as the Buyer or you negotiate full or partial coverage from the Seller, it is in your best interest to enter into a home purchase knowing the state of these and other details about your next home.

Jack Meyers

The Meyers Group
jackestate@aol.com 
303.263.3050
Twitter: @jackestate

Denver Tops the List

Denver on the Map

The U.S. News and World Report this month ranked Denver at the top of the list of 100 best places to live in the USA!

Rounding out the top 5 cities are:

  • Austin, TX
  • Fayetteville, AR
  • Raleigh-Durham, NC
  • Colorado Springs, CO

For perspective on what this ranking actually means, consider the rank on this list of San Diego, CA – a city purported by many to be “the best place they’ve ever lived” by many (just ask anyone who’s lived there!) and a place former residents often long to return to. Sunny San Diego ranks 16th on the list – a full 15 spots down from Denver. That’s pretty incredible.

Factors used to determine this list include home values, the job market, average commute times, desirability and net migration (whether people are actually moving to a particular metro area.)

So, Denver – the rest of the country likes us. They really, really like us! And all the factors affecting our rank on this list are what continue to draw new residents to the Denver Metro area, lending additional strength to the Seller’s Market we continue to experience in Real Estate. According to the Denver Post, Denver’s population jumped by 101,000 between July 1, 2014 and July 1, 2015, and was outpaced nationally only by continued record growth levels in North Dakota due to the localized oil boom happening there.

Right now is an incredible time to sell a house – the market is strongly in your favor. And if you are on the hunt to find your next home in Denver or any surrounding suburb, you’ll need an experienced guide to help you negotiate the best deal possible, because there is a lot of competition and too few properties for sale for the demand we are seeing.

If you’re thinking about relocating to Denver or moving from one end of our fair city to another, drop a line. I’ve been helping people buy and sell Denver area real estate for over 21 years, and I’d be pleased to help you navigate our real estate marketplace.

Jack Meyers

The Meyers Group
jackestate@aol.com 
303.263.3050
Twitter: @jackestate

 

 

Next Steps for Buyers Under Contract

In a Seller’s Market, it is imperative that you, the Buyer, act swiftly to ensure there are no glitches or hitches in your deal. Successfully closing a real estate transaction requires planning and attention to detail, and as you begin your home search, you’ll want to be prepared for what to do next once the Seller accepts your offer.

Checklist

  1. Deliver the Earnest Money. A copy of the earnest funds, and sometimes the actual check, may be delivered at the time an offer is made. If the actual earnest funds have not been delivered at the time of contract acceptance, there is typically a deadline of 24 hours or so by which to deliver funds to the title company or the Seller’s representative – whomever has agreed to hold title funds.
  2. Schedule the Property Inspection. It’s a good idea to consider inspectors before you find the home you want to purchase so you are ready to rock-n-roll once a contract sticks.
  3. Communicate with your Lender. Send them a copy of your accepted contract, and respond to all of their requests for documents or information in a timely manner.
  4. Your Lender will order the Appraisal. Once the Inspection is complete, your lender will order the Property Appraisal. Your job at that point is to wait for the results to come in; the majority of the time, a property will breeze through the Appraisal without a problem. If something does come up, you’ll work through it with your Realtor.
  5. Review the Title Commitment. If there are any sticky wickets with your property’s deed or other aspects of title, this is where you’ll find out about them. Review the Title Commitment carefully and ask questions of your Realtor, the title company rep and if necessary, a licensed Real Estate attorney.
  6. Secure Home Owner’s Insurance. You’ll want to have a policy in place from the very moment you own the home, and once you have selected a policy, you’ll need to forward this information to the title company and your lender.
  7. Schedule the Closing. As soon as you’ve checked most or all major contractual obligations off the list, schedule your closing with the title company.
  8. Complete the Final Walk Through. The final walk through should happen as close to closing as possible, but with a little wiggle room should an issue arise. I once had a client discover damage to the roof after a major storm just a few days before closing during the final walk through, and this gave the Seller time to handle the insurance claim and have the issue repaired before my client, the Buyer, took possession of the property. Don’t skip the walk through – this is your last chance to ‘kick the tires’ and double check that agreed upon inspection items have been completed to your specifications.
  9. Close on your New Home! You should plan to close on your home purchase at the scheduled date/time, but it is also wise to be flexible – sometimes issues pop up at the last minute (such as a loan not funding on time) that force a closing to postpone for a few days. This can be frustrating, but with a qualified Realtor by your side, this is a situation you can navigate successfully. Patience and a cool head will help you win the day. And the majority of the time, closings happen as expected and on time.

Are you ready to begin your home search, or maybe you’ve already found “the one,” and you need an expert negotiator to help you secure your next home with the best possible terms? Give me a call. I’ve been helping Buyers and Sellers succeed in Denver Real Estate for over 21 years, and I’d love to help you land your dream home.

Jack Meyers

The Meyers Group
jackestate@aol.com 
303.263.3050
Twitter: @jackestate