Archive for category Boise Homes

It’s the INFORMATION AGE – We Don’t NEED Realtors!

successstory…Oh REALLY!?

Before the information age the real estate game was a totally different beast. Massive books of listings were distributed to local agencies each week, after which agents would have to sort and sift through these giant tomes to find listings for their buyers, and then contact them by phone to arrange showings of those listings. The information at large wasn’t provided to the public at all and every step of the foot work was up to the agent.

Today all these processes are done electronically; everything you might want to know about a home in Idaho can be found online. Consumers can even see comparable properties and set up automatic home finding programs to keep from even having to search.

Given the accessibility of real estate info you may be wondering if you even need a REALTOR® to get you in to your next home, but fact is a qualified agent is still just important as they used to be — perhaps even moreso! Consider this:

It’s the agent’s job to know the market.
Trying to buy or sell a home is practically a job in itself; anyone who has tried to do it alone will tell you just that. A real estate agents very livlihood relies on not only knowing the current market trends but also in knowing the market history. It’s a job that takes real expertise, much like any other career. For instance, you likely have the know-how and ability to change out a broken toilet in your home – it’s not rocket science – but without a doubt it is easier to hire a plumber to do it, if for no other reason than you know they have more experience in getting it done right the first time.

The information is out there, now what?
YES! There is more and more real estate data out there on the web every single day, and new ways to find it almost as frequently – from tweets, to fan pages, there is a information avalanche going on! But just having the data is only half the battle. Understanding what that data means, and how it can change your transaction can save or cost you thousands of dollars.

Getting it wrong costs more than it used to!
Back in the day home buyers could usually expect a slow, steady increase in their homes value over a number of years. Which was great, because in those times most homeowners were in it for the long haul; people tended to stay in one place, work on job, and put down roots. Nowadays however culture has changed, we are a mobile society, the economy has changed and so has the job market – even the real estate market itself is more turbulent. Life can feel more unpredictable than ever with less and less people under 40 planning to retire with the same company they work for now. Buying at the wrong time, having to sell sooner than expected – all these things will end up costing you more.

We want your next home buying process to be a success! Real estate in Idaho is our PASSION and we love helping people just like you find the perfect place! Ready to get started? The best place to begin is our GoIdaHome website! Therein you will find searches that allow you to find any home or property listed in Southwest Idaho, information about Boise and the surrounding areas, and tons of other great tools and features!

facebookJust want to lookie-loo a bit? Why not click over to our real estate Facebook page? You can find some of our featured homes, see what’s happening in the Treasure Valley and get great inspiration to help keep you smiling! We’d love to connect with you!!

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Tips for Young Home Buyers

young-boise-home-buyersWe’re glad to see so many young people not being deterred from buying a home due to the changes in the market over the last few years. There is still a lot of value to be found in buying a home, putting down roots, and investing in your future stability through real estate. Considering how quick to pick up on things  members of generation x and y are it’s no surprise that the younger people are among some of the fastest growing groups of buyers.

That said there are still a few things to keep in mind for the best results when it comes time to find a home.

Use Technology
This should come easy for many of you – between social media and smart phones, this tip almost doesn’t even need to be mentioned. You can find homes in Boise online easily on our website, you can even use other tools like Google Streetview to get a pre-showing view of the home and the area. Use them! It will save you a lot of shoe leather if you can search the market for possible homes before hitting the street.

Plan Ahead
Unlike the real estate boom years, don’t assume a home purchased today will appreciate in value within five years. You’ve got to be around to benefit from the appreciation, so if you’re unsure about your five-year plans, it may be better to rent. Don’t look at buying a home as the end of all ends however, plans change, LIFE changes; you can always sell, or rent out your home down the road should things drastically change.

Avoid Information Overload
It’s harder and harder to do. Information is everywhere, especially if you’re really into being online and connected. If you want to find a differing opinion you can find a few thousand online without even looking hard. Knowing too much can be just as dangerous as not knowing enough, so by all means do your research but don’t drive yourself insane with mortgage calculations, real estate blogs, and doom predictions.

dangerous2Don’t Go It Alone
Many people think that because so much information is available online that they don’t need the help of a real estate agent. Nothing could be further from the truth! A REALTOR® does more than just find homes for you, they are truly your advocate throughout the process of negotiating and getting the deal done. Beyond that a good agent can steer you away from possible pitfalls.

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Are You Buying the RIGHT Home for You?

reo-homesThere’s nothing that quite compares to the feeling of first stepping foot into a new home. The time and effort put in to finding the home, getting through the paper work and procedures have finally paid off and that big breath relief hits you. Ahhh!

But before that golden moment there are a lot of things to consider; as a lot of work goes into that warm happy memory, it’s important to make sure we’ve made all the right decisions along the way. It’s easy to get swept up in the excitement of it all but here are a few rational questions to ask in order to make sure the home you are considering is right for you.

Condition
Unless you are buying new or having your home built this is one of the big items to really take your time with. Will this home need a new roof or other major repairs soon?  Is the landscape something too lush and extravagant for me to handle on my own? Fixer-upper homes have tons of potential but you have to be ready to own those rough edges until you can smooth them out the way you envision.

Pricing
Even if your lender says the home of your dreams is within your reach you need to make sure you are actually comfortable with the monthly terms. The price of the house itself is not the only factor in the end cost either – don’t forget down payments, closing costs, and other fees (not to mention moving costs!) That new house “ahh moment” might not feel quite as fresh if you are living on ramen for the first year, so it’s always good to plan for more than is listed in the black and white details.

Size
Is the home you’re considering big enough for you or your family? Right combination of bedrooms and baths? Could the living room be a little bigger, or do you need a separate office? You’ll want to make sure the home you select is going to have enough growing room for your needs – in most cases you can expand later but that is often costly.

Creature Comforts
Does your potential dream home have central air conditioning or heat? Maybe you have fantasies about a heated garage floor. Will having a two level house make it difficult for visiting guests? Are there adequate bathrooms to accomodate your traditional summer time patio bbq fiesta? Make sure you give these things some thought even though in most cases adjustments can be made, there should never be a reason to compromise.

Resale Potential
Statistics show that people move into a new home nearly every seven years on average. Life can throw some wild curveballs at us without warning; if you were forced to sell your home how easy would that task be? Having a home with high resale potential can help this item not be of concern. Whether it be the newness of the home, it’s location, or special features, generally most homes will have some element that lends them a little extra resale potential. Thinking about the future through home improvements is also a great way to not only protect but to also grow your home investment.

Thinking about all of these things while you are in the home finding mode is a great place to start. Some home buyers will fall in love with over the top amenities that often seem attractive in the showing stage but later turn into real headaches. There’s nothing wrong with shooting for the moon, your house should be as fabulous as you can imagine it, but it also never hurts too keep your feet on the ground while your head is in the clouds.

Still looking for homes in Idaho? We can help! Visit our website to find the homes you’ve been searching for!

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Home Staging for Success

30380075During the Winter months it can be harder to sell homes with curb appeal alone, landscaping tends to be less impressive, and lawns aren’t green. So when trying to sell your home during these cooler months it’s crucial to amp up the home’s other features to give it an extra warm and cozy look.

Here are some tips to bring warmth to your next showing.

The Nose Knows
Whether it be old fashioned cider warmers on the stove tops, or baking some cookies when you know a showing is coming up, adding some of these delicious smells to your home can make the sale more appetizing.

Keep Up the Up Keep
This doesn’t mean picking up every single leaf in the yard – a little Fall color can be nice – but you do want to make sure that your exterior is clean and tidy. Make sure flowerbeds are ready for the long months and that windows and siding are looking their best.

A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Smiles
Display family photos from warmer days. By adding these touches of color you can bring a bit of brightness to your interior appearance. Pops of greens and blues from Summer can really add light to your walls.

These are some simple tips to help you get your home sold a little easier in the dark days of Winter. Don’t need to sell or need to find a home in Boise? We can help! Visit our website to search for any home on the market in Southwest Idaho or contact us to work hands-on with a team of qualified REALTORS®.

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Tips for Thanksgiving Day Cleanup

Thanksgiving Day ranges from family to family either as a casual carefree day of family and food or as a strategically planned orchestration. Whether your day of thanks is simple or filled with all the trimmings no one can deny the most difficult part of the whole event – the cleanup!

To help we’ve put together the Top 3 Tips to Help Make Thanksgiving Day Cleanup a SNAP!

Go Potluck!
Hey, it’s TRADITIONAL! The first Thanksgiving technically was a potluck! Invite your guests to bring their own favorite dishes. This keeps your kitchen less of a mess in preparation and if they bring their own covered dishes they’ll be taking half the cleanup home with them! Be sure to coordinate with your guests so you don’t end up with 6 green bean casseroles!

Multitasking Cookware:
Cut down on cleanup time washing dishes by choosing cookware that is safe to go from oven to table and from table to fridge. Another great idea – BREAD BOWLS! Serve your soup dishes in these delicious containers to save washing a ton of bowls.

Make room:
Clean out the refrigerator before the cooking begins! This way you can start with a clean slate; it will make putting away those left overs a little bit easier if you don’t have to pile on top of what’s already in your fridge.

Want even more tips? Here is a great article with more!

We’d love to connect with you on Facebook! LIKE our Facebook page to stay up on great local area events, Boise real estate news, and inspirational messages to help get you through the week!

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Home Buyer Tips: Save Yourself

Buying a home is unlike any other transaction you will take part in during your lifetime; as it’s not necessarily one that most people make often it can be easy to stumble over your own feet during the process. To help aid in those situations we’ve prepared these quick tips to help you – whether it’s your first time, or you are a seasoned flipper.

Often the biggest part of the home buying process that is tough to handle is time – how long will it take to get the house from found to closed. While this time frame can vary from situation to situation there are a few things in particular you the buyer can be aware of in order to help keep the timeline running on track – avoid these mistakes to do just that!

Not working with an experienced agent.
Of course we’re going to harp on this one first! Fact is though, even if it’ just to help shuffled the paperwork, using the services of a qualified REALTOR® can really help turn the entire home buying process from nightmare into a dream. Not only can an agent help you find the home you are searching for, they will prove invaluable in the closing process as well as in handling any issues that may arise along the way.

Living too much in the now.
While looking for homes, be willing to expand beyond the homes current condition or appearance and realize that once it’s yours you will be able to take the environment in hand and shape it to your liking. It could be something as little as putting in new carpet, or painting the interior. You may be surprised but many potential home buyers will see a house only “as-is” and let minor things be a deal breaker for an otherwise perfect home.

Not caring about the little details.
Whether this means compromising on what you really want over the cost, or just trying to ignore an elephant in the room just to get the deal done, there are some instances where you really don’t want to compromise – and that’s OK. This is another area that working with an agent can be a real life saver as they can put their experience to work in letting you be aware of which things might not be negotiable before you go to sale.

Not making a list.
You don’t have to check it twice – but we recommend it! Having a clearly outlined idea of what you are looking for in a home before you begin the search is a good idea. By knowing what items are most important to you, you will be able to easily tell which things might be able to be compromised on and what items are set in stone.

Skipping the inspection.
Getting a home inspection is critical. Let me say that again: getting a home inspection is CRITICAL. Buying a home is unlike any other purchase you will make, and unlike a car there really is no way to take it for a spin around the block. The next best thing is getting a home inspection. This will generally be your only chance to “kick the tires” before you get down to the paperwork and it can be vitally important in not only saving you cost, but also saving you heartache down the road.

Ready to start finding homes? Our website is full of great homes in Boise as well as some of the best real estate in Idaho! Visit it today to start finding homes! Do the social thing? We’re on Facebook too! Visit our fan page and give it a LIKE while you’re there – it’s a great place to keep up on local Boise info as well as great motivational thoughts every day!

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Is DIY Really the Way to Go?

Do you enjoy physical labor, working with your hands, and getting a little dirty? Are you persistent and patient when learning new skills? Are you the dedicated type who once a project is started you follow it to completion no matter what?

Thinking: not so much? Do It Yourself might not be for you!

If you’ve ever wondered when time to give up the ghost and call a professional may be there are some easy ways to tell if you are biting off more than you can chew.

The National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) has devised a 17-point quiz, “Home Improvement Projects: Do It Yourself Or Hire A Professional?” to help you take the guess work out of the decision. You can take the test here.

A lot of people think doing it yourself is the way to save money, and some times that can be true, but then again most people also underestimate the learning curve for home improvements as well. Many home improvement projects can really surprise you once they get started and can become both involved and costly – especially if you realize half way through the job that you’ve actually made the problem worse than it was to begin with.

In a recent survey 40% of people said cost along was the deciding factor in trying to take on a DIY project alone. Before you start pulling drywall down consider what it might take to correct mistakes should you cause more damage than good.

NARI says there’s much more to consider than just price when deciding if you want to tackle a project on your own:

• Your own physical abilities, skills, time and understanding of the job. Will it take more than one person, or likely cause you to throw out your back?

• Do you have the right tools? You might be surprised to find yourself half way through your task and discover you don’t have the right equipment to complete the task.

• A plan. More than just the details of the task itself consider how this will disrupt your normal household schedule. For instance, updating the bathroom may mean you have to share a bathroom or even figure out how to make due without one for a couple days.

• Permits, materials and time. Some HOA’s and city ordinances may have to be considered before you begin putting up walls or tearing out windows. Check first!

Don’t want to take on the home project yourself but don’t know who to call? Feel free to ask us for recommendations! As your team of Boise REALTOR®’s we know the area and can likely recommend any number of great home service providers to suit your needs!

We’re easy to find online! Connect with us at our main Boise Real Estate website or at any of these popular social networks.

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