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Mailing Address is 1121 W Valley Blvd, Ste I-319, Tehachapi CA 93561. Make sure you note the address at which we will meet you for your appointment.
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What’s the 2018 Tax Law Mean for Real Estate in Tehachapi?

What’s the 2018 Tax Law Mean for Real Estate in Tehachapi?

NAR (National Association of REALTORS®) is projecting a 1-3% growth in home values in 2018 but says that in areas with higher housing costs there could actually be a decline in value.  Why is that?

The new tax law limits the state (and local) income tax and property tax deductions to $10,000 total.  That will definitely have a big impact in higher property value areas.  For example, a property valued at about $800,000 could expect to pay about $10,000 in property taxes leaving no “room” for a state and local income tax deduction.

There are also changes in the amount of mortgage interest that can be deducted, but for loans originated before the end of 2017 and closed before April 1, 2018, they get a pass.  Again, these changes generally affect higher property values.

Want more info?  This article from Market Watch has more details and a nifty calculator at the end that can give you an idea of your 2017 tax hit.  Check it out.

Want to talk about the strategy that might be best for you when it comes to buying or selling a home?  Email me at Sally@YourRealAdvantage.com or call/text me at 661-375-7325.

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Your House Is Ready to Show, Where are the Buyers?

Your House Is Ready to Show, Where are the Buyers?

You’ve done all the right things: taken care of deferred maintenance, spruced up the paint, super cleaned and decluttered.  Advertising is in place, agents have visited to preview, but you haven’t had any showings.  What’s the problem?

Ideally, every seller hopes that they will have the house ready to sell and immediately get a call for a showing that then turns into the new owner of the home in 45 days.  One and done!  What could be better?  That’s the ideal, but it is quite rarely the reality.

If your house is ready to show and has been properly marketed, then there is only one reason that you are not getting showings.  Before we get to that reason, what does “properly marketed” mean.  Marketing is now a specifically targeted activity that produces measurable results.  The goal of marketing a house is to create awareness and get attention.  Think of it as a formula:

Awareness + Attention = Showings & Offers

There are many ways to market a house that produces measurable results.  Some of the more traditional methods, like print advertising in newspapers, flyers on sign posts and similar means are less effective because it is very difficult to capture the prospective buyer and provide follow up.  Without the ability to measure response the advertising effort is essentially wasted.  Fortunately, the the internet has grown up to such an extent that it makes targeted marketing relatively easy.

Think of how often you are surfing the internet and all of a sudden an ad appears that is just like the thing you were recently looking to buy.  That’s targeted marketing and that’s what gets your house the Awareness that leads to the Attention it deserves.

If you have the Awareness and Attention but not the showings that lead to offers, then it all comes down to price.  Now here’s another thing to consider, time and price are very closely related.  If you are committed to moving relatively quickly, your house needs to be priced accordingly.  If your house is unusual, has challenges (like undesirable neighbors, other neighborhood problems, etc) then you will likely need to be listed below what would otherwise be fair market value in order to get the Attention to turn into Showings and Contracts.

If you want to learn more about how a pinpoint price analysis can help you do this, call or text 661.375.7325 or email Sally@YourRealAdvantage.com to schedule your no-cost no-obligation consultation today.

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Getting Ready to Sell Your Home?

Are you getting ready to sell your home?  If you have lived in the same place for a long time the task may seem even more daunting but take heart it can be comparatively stress free with a few simple steps.

Most of us have boxes of “stuff” that we have put away somewhere to “deal with later.”  If this sounds familiar to you, I can relate!  In fact, I have a bunch of those boxes myself and a whole lot of “stuff” that really no longer has a place in my life.  Because I’m getting ready to sell my own home I thought my experience might be useful to you.

Set aside time each day to work through the stuff you may not even have looked at in years.  How much time?  That depends on your timeline, and how much time you can make available between work, family, social obligations, etc.  When I decided to start this project, I started with an hour a day.  As I get closer to my active listing date, I’m spending more time each day.

Keep or toss?  Sometimes it is an easy choice, sometimes not.  For the more difficult decisions, I think about whether or not this is something I really need to keep.  If I don’t actually need it and I haven’t had it on display but I may want to retain the memory, I either scan it (paper) or photograph it (objects) and then set it into the toss pile.

Can’t decide whether or not you really want to keep something?  Set it aside and keep moving!  It’s easy to get bogged down with indecision.  If you still can’t decide later, box it up and put it in the garage.  If you still haven’t done anything with it in six months, let it go.

Yard sale, estate sale, or donate?  My choice is estate sale.  It may seem like I won’t realize as much profit as if I did a yard sale because I have to pay a portion of the sale proceeds to the Estate Sale company.

Think about this: time is money.  When I thought about doing a yard sale on my own, having to gather everything together, get it priced and setup, then deal with bunches of strangers in and around my house, I found that thought horrifying.  Way more time and effort than I want to put in to it.  Not to mention that they do all the advertising and have multiple people on site to assist the buyers.  Oh and I also have little idea of how to price “stuff” so I would likely either give it away for too little, or price it too high so that it never sells.  So it makes much more sense for me to hire a professional!

That last sentence bears repeating when it comes to many things, including selling your home and why it’s important to hire a professional.  Oftentimes, I hear about people that try to sell their home on their own because they believe they can save money by not having to pay a commission.  The truth is they almost always end up selling for less than they could have gotten with the help of the right Real Estate Consultant, having it take longer, and enduring way more stress than should be necessary.

Even though I’m deep in the throes of decluttering to get my house on the market, I still have time to talk to you about getting your home sold.  If selling your home for the best price and terms possible, in a timeframe that works for you is what you want, and doing it with as little stress as possible when dealing with high levels of complexity, then let’s talk about your next best steps!

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5 Tips to make your house more sellable

Are you wondering whether now is a good time to sell your home?  Maybe you are thinking about downsizing because all the kids have moved away or upsizing as your family grows?  Either way there are several things that are truly important when it comes to getting your home sold quickly.

1. Clean, clean, clean!

There’s a huge difference in living in a clean house and in living in a house that has been cleaned to sell.  When looking at a home, all the corners where that tiny bit of dust has accumulated on the baseboard, the edge of the wall the dog leans against, the slight water stain on the shower door are some of the things that will subconsciously lead a buyer to think that the home has not been well-maintained.

The key here is that these tiny things create a subliminal message to a buyer that they don’t even notice.  Will a buyer purchase a house that is not spotlessly clean?  Of course they will but it will take longer to get it sold and the house will sell for less money.

2. Paint

Customized rooms with extremely bright or dark colored paint, wallpaper, or wall fixtures can make a house feel like a home for the current homeowner, but often can be a turn off for home buyers.  You want a buyer focused on the house itself, so painting in neutral colors will keep them from focusing on the decor and direct them instead to the floor plan and room sizes.  An added benefit is that fresh paint makes the house look clean and well-maintained.

If you already have a single neutral wall color, consider painting the trim to freshen the look.  Doorways tend to show paint wear faster than other areas because of the higher traffic.

3. Budget Minded Kitchen Updates

Maybe you always planned to overhaul the kitchen or bathroom with a major remodel but never found the time.   There are some small, inexpensive changes that can be done.  Replacing the hardware on cabinets, upgrading light switches, and changing outlet covers are a few examples.  Let’s go a little further and change out the beat-up looking trash compactor for a pull-out trash drawer or a wine fridge. Do you have a giant fluorescent light fixture in the ceiling framed in oak? Take a look under the diffuser panels and see how easy it would be to remove that and turn it into an interesting and updated light fixture.

4. Bathroom Updates

Like the kitchen, simple updates make a difference.  Light switches, cabinet hardware, and light fixtures can change the entire feel of the space.

5. Curb Appeal

Remember to take a close look at the outside of the house too.  Here’s another opportunity to clean it up!  Even if the paint is in good condition, make sure that it is also clean.  Wash the house to remove dust from the siding.  Make the windows sparkling clean both inside and out, tidy up the landscaping and draw the buyer to the front door.

These are just a few ideas that make it easier to sell your home faster for more money.  If you want more specifics for your own home, just call 661-375-7325 for an expert no-cost, no-obligation consultation.

Because you found value in these ideas, why not share this post with your friends?

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