Now is a great time for both Buyers and Sellers and here’s why:
Interest rates are still relatively low. The rates are projected to go up and are higher than they were this time last year so now is the time to lock in a rate you can be happy with. Still, rates are a lot lower than they have been in the past and have been the lowest since 1971. Before you start looking, meet with your banker or mortgage company to get pre-qualified for a loan. Then you will know exactly how much you can afford and you won’t be wasting your time or spinning your wheels in the wrong price range. You may be surprised at how much you can afford. Then, call your REALTOR and start looking. I would love to be your REALTOR so check out my profile online and on Facebook.
Why Wait???? Typically, inventory builds in March and if you wait until then you’ll have a lot more competition. Right now we have both an inventory shortage and a sudden uptick of buyers in Oxford and surrounding areas. The political season is over, the Dow is at a record high and there is market confidence. Wouldn’t it be great to get it sold quicker? Make sure your house and yard are in great condition because curb appeal sells and so does a house that is move-in-ready. It is proven that sellers who utilize real estate professionals get their houses sold faster and for more money.. If this is something you want, schedule an appointment with me for more information.
I hope these guides can help you. Enjoy! And, best wishes.
Eileen Saunders, SRES, REALTOR Tommy Morgan Realtors 2092 Old Taylor Road Oxford MS 38655 662-404-0816 | 662-234-5344 Equal Housing
Have you heard?
Millions and millions of Americans are planning to move after the up-coming election. This news is all over the internet: Facebook, Twitter, blogs. And, if it’s on the internet it must be true.
I’ve read that some people will move overseas. Some will go to Canada or South America or Europe. Some will stay in the U.S. but just want to go somewhere to “get away from it all.”
So I’m here to help.
First of all, if you plan to stay in the U.S. and haven’t decided where to go yet, consider Oxford, MS. Oxford is a wonderful, college town with a retirement community. There are plenty of things to do: arts, culture, sports, dining, outdoor activities. Oxford has great schools in both the county and city limits, is a designated bike-friendly community, has a world-class food scene, ranked #1 Smartest Place to retire, is home to the #1 bookstore in the country, ranked #2 of the top ten small towns in America and has literary charm. There are literally over 100 fun things to do in Oxford and if you don’t believe me, request my quarterly list of 100 Things To Do In Oxford MS.
So if Oxford seems like the place you want to move to, please call me and I’ll help you find your dream home. I am a REALTOR and work with Tommy Morgan Realtors in the Oxford office. We are a full service brokerage and can assist you through the entire process of buying a home here.
Now, if you are one of the people leaving Oxford, know that we will miss you and wish you well. Again, please call me and I will help you sell your house. I am quite experienced with sellers that relocate due to jobs, mostly, and will take great care to keep your house watched over until it sells. Don’t worry about the paperwork; we can send it to you and most forms you can e-sign or sign before a notary or local attorney. With all of these people moving around I just might have a buyer for your house in the very near future.
Moving? Time is of Essence
Well, let’s get down to the business of all of this moving that is about to happen. There is much to do so it is wise to start preparing now. With the election just a few weeks away, you’ll have to be quick.
- Update or get your passport if you plan to move out of the country. With all of these people moving, you won’t have to stand in line if you do it now. Get up to date on those necessary shots, too.
- If you are a renter, get your notice in that you are leaving so you don’t get charged that extra month. You may have to pay to break your lease if it does not end for a while, but that’s ok. Add the extra cost to your moving budget so you won’t have any financial surprises at the end.
If you are a homeowner, get your house on the market fast while there is little competition. You’ll want your house to be the first to sell. Of course, if the house and yard are in disrepair it may take longer to sell than a spiffy new building with hardwood floors and the latest appliances and counter tops. But that’s ok; since you have no place to go yet you will have time to make some repairs and upgrades. I have a list of local contractors and handymen that you could pick through to hire to help you, but do it fast to schedule them or you may be put on a waiting list…or DIY.
- Regardless of whether you rent or own, since you are moving, start packing. There might be a run on supplies and that would be horrible if you move but cannot pack your things. Boxes, tape and packing materials are expensive; add it to your budget. This is a good time to purge your belongings, too. I mean, really, if you’re one of the millions heading overseas, it will be so much cheaper for you to get rid of all that you have and lighten your load. Go shopping once you find a new hometown.
I have also read many times on the internet that many kind people will help you move. Specifically, I saw one woman’s Facebook post about her friend that wanted to leave the country after the election and she was offering to help her pack. How sweet and neighborly. So my point is, if you need help, there seem to be a lot of people that will give you a hand. And if you decide to purge your belongings, maybe those helpers would like them, too.
- Make arrangements for a truck. There are only so many to go around and if all of those people move at the same time, it will be difficult to get a truck when you need it, so make your truck reservations now. You could, in fact, order a storage container for the short term. The company you choose can bring the container to you, you pack it up and they’ll store that unit until you need it. When you find a new home just call them to deliver it. Remember that extra storage time and long-distance travel will cost you, so make note of that in your budget.
- Cancel your utilities, lawn care service, pest control, your daughter’s ballet lessons, pet walking service, and any upcoming doctor appointments. Empty your aquarium and give away the fish. Reptiles that you aren’t taking with you should go to a pet rescue service or a good friend. Have your mail held if you do not know your new address yet; have it forwarded if you do. Magazines don’t get forwarded so be sure to call them each about your move. Students will need to fill out the necessary paperwork to withdraw from school (sorry but tuition is non-refundable at most schools by this time of year). Notify your bank and other financial institutions, credit card companies, safe deposit box and credit monitoring subscriptions. These might put a hold on your accounts if they see unusual movement. You can’t move without money so make sure they know you are moving. Schedule car maintenance asap so you can get where you want to go in a safe car, even if it is just to the airport. Make sure your tags and ID cards are current. Of course if you are a homeowner, keep the utilities on so the house doesn’t mold over while it sits vacant waiting for a buyer. You can switch the utilities to the new owners. Get your children’s school records, doctor records, and stock up on prescriptions. Call your insurance company to let them know you are moving. They can advise you on keeping your stuff safe during the move.
- Empty out the refrigerator and pantry. Eat down your inventory and have friends handy on moving day to take the stuff you couldn’t eat. If you are using a moving company, drink all of your liquor now! They won’t pack or move liquids.
- Pack your bags for as many days as you’ll need until your stuff arrives at your new home or until you can get to the nearest shopping district in your new hometown. Keep valuable items with you at all times.
- Consider what to do with Fido or Miss Kitty. Make arrangements now.
- Hire a cleaning service to come in after you so you leave your place the way you originally found it.
Whew! Are you sure you want to do this?
Just remember, I’m here to help whether you want to move away from or move to this great little town of Oxford, MS.
Eileen Saunders is a Realtor® with Tommy Morgan Realtors in Oxford, MS. She is an expert at moving, having moved 15 times in 23 years, buying, selling, and renting houses along the way. Her soon-to-be published book, tentatively titled “Moving,” chronicles her family’s adventures over the past years and includes tips to make your moves smoother and less stressful. You can reach Eileen at her office, 2092 Old Taylor Road, Oxford MS 38655 or by phone: 662-234-5344 or 662-404-0816. Eileen is a certified Seniors Real Estate Specialist® and believes in Equal Housing for all.
There are a lot of things to do to get ready for putting your house on the market for sale. Whether you use a real estate professional or go FSBO, these tips can help you get your house ready to sell.
- Consider renting a storage unit for unneeded items until you move. A decluttered house will look great to buyers.
- Pack up about 30% of your stuff. You are moving, right? So you don’t need those out-of-season and things you don’t use often items right now.
- Remove any furniture that clutters the room. Too much furniture can offer a mental challenge to a buyer who has to place their items in your room. If a room looks too small because there are too many pieces of furniture, then it is too small.
- Paint walls and ceilings that need it. Use a neutral color, not necessarily the trendy color because the current trends may not apply to all buyers. Keep it neutral.
- Fix popcorn finish on ceilings that have some damage. Patching sometimes works, other times makes it worse. Consult a professional for help.
- Clean carpet if it is in good condition. Replace the carpet if it looks awful and not cleanable. Builder’s grade carpet in a neutral color is both economical and looks great.
- Empty closets of things you don’t need. Put these things in the storage unit.
- Fold your linen closet neatly and remove most of what’s there to make the closet look larger.
- Clean blinds and curtains if applicable.
- Upgrade light bulbs to brighten up the interior rooms. Brighter makes rooms appear bigger.
- Replace all burned out bulbs.
- Clean light fixtures and ceiling fans
- Remove family photos, awards, certificates. Let the buyers imagine the house is theirs instead of reminding them of who you are.
- Repair plumbing leaks
- Make minor repairs (screens, dents and dings)
- Replace worn door knobs and cabinet handles
- Fix/replace grout
- Get rid of pet odors and repair pet damage. If more occurs between listing and closing, at least you have years of damage repaired for the showing. Then, fix up the rest of the damage when you move out.
- If your attic is filled at the entryway, pack those stored items into a storage unit or move them to appear organized in the attic. Let the buyers see past your stuff to how large the attic really is.
- Make a list of your major repairs to disclose to the buyers.
Eileen Saunders, REALTOR with Tommy Morgan Realtors, 2092 Old Taylor Road, Oxford MS 38655, 662-404-0816 or 662-234-5344 Equal Housing
Selling your house?
I put together this great list of things to do to the exterior of your house when it is for sale. Increase the curb appeal and potential buyers will want to see the interior.
You can go to Checklistables.com for a printable version but read it here first. Either way, regardless of the season, get your home’s exterior ready for the sale.
Yard and Garden Checklist
- Fertilize the grass, kill the weeds before the grass comes in green
- Trim the bushes
- Prune the trees
- Replace dead bushes or remove them and repair the ground
- Mulch the gardens
- Find an out-of-the-way spot for the garden hose
- Keep the garbage cans hidden
- Clean up the back yard
- Remove broken playground and patio items
- Repair and paint to match any broken parts in the fence surrounding your property
- Replace or remove the shed
- Clean out vegetable garden beds
- Tidy the wood pile
Exterior House Checklist
- Paint the front door
- Paint or wash all exterior doors
- Sweep the front porch
- Replace or repaint the mailbox
- Clean gutters and replace broken parts and down spouts
- Wash the windows
- Remove spider webs and mud dauber nests
- Replace or remove broken or rusted furniture on the front porch
- Wash the garage door and replace damaged sections
- Replace burned out light bulbs
- Clean or replace outdoor light fixtures
- Repair or replace rotting shutters and rusted hinges
- Clean roof tiles
- Power wash siding, mildewed porch railings and trim
- Power wash driveway and walkways
Eileen Saunders, REALTOR(R)~Tommy Morgan REALTORS~2092 Old Taylor Road, Oxford, MS 38655~662-404-0816 or 662-234-5344~Equal Housing