Anshu Arora LLM, MSc, PMP

Cell 604-828-7331 | info@anshuarora.com

Here are some of the issues that commonly keep home buyers awake at night, and what you can do about them.

“The house has a cracked foundation, dry rot, or a leaky roof”

Renovating, fixing and repairing are on few buyers’ wish lists. When faced with the home of their dreams, they fear the inspection. What if there is dry rot, or a roof or foundation issue?


Most homes will need routine maintenance, and a good inspector will point this out. But it’s important not to let your fears get the best of you. Much of what the inspector comes up with during the inspection is for informational purposes only. Every problem does not need to be repaired right away.


The inspector’s job is to point out every issue he sees in the house. Ask him to explain how bad the issue is, and how long it can go before needing replacement or repair.

If an issue arises that needs immediate attention, go back to the seller and see if they will repair or credit you back to repair after you close.

“I’ll lose my deposit”

Buyers typically put in an earnest money deposit with a signed contract. Typically, this is 5 percent of the purchase price. The seller does not cash the check. Instead, the money sits in an trust account and can’t be released without both parties’ signatures.

It’s nearly impossible for a buyer to lose their deposit. If you have an inspection, disclosure review or loan contingencies, work closely with your real estate agent to mark those timeframes.


If you need to remove these contingencies in writing, plan to firm things up a day in advance. If you are in negotiations around a contingency date, be sure to extend the contingency date to keep yourself under contract.

“I’ll lose the house”

If you find the home of your dreams, you may have to move fast. Particularly in competitive markets, many homes sell before the first open house to quick acting and super-motivated buyers.


If you see a new listing hit the market, be sure to let your agent know right away. Try to make an appointment to see the home as soon as possible. Also, find out immediately how the seller’s agent plans to handle any offers received. Sometimes they will take the first offer, especially if it’s a good one. More often than not, the seller and the agent will have an offer date to review offers or ask for best and final offers by a certain day.

If you are travelling or busy with work, be sure not to miss out on your dream home. Be in constant contact with your agent, and flag potential homes that look like a great fit.

“My agent doesn’t have my best interest in mind”

Great agents are always on the prowl for new properties, checking out the market and protecting your best interest at all times.


Some buyers fear that their agent might have different motivations, or that they aren’t on the same page. If you have doubts, change agents. Never settle or take any random agent that comes along as your buyer’s agent. You and your agent should be committed to each other. 

“We’ll never find a house in time for…”

A real estate purchase should never be rushed. If you have a firm deadline creeping up, make a plan B.


For example, many buyers face an expiring lease or a school application deadline. If you are three months out from a deadline and you haven’t found a house, take the pressure off by putting an alternate plan in place.


Home buying is an expensive and complicated transaction. You don’t want to rush into a purchase and make a mistake. It’s much easier and safer to get another rental or find a temporary address or try some out-of-the-box idea. It may be a little inconvenient, but you can handle it.


If something scares you about a home, the buying process, or a third-party involved in the sale, voice your concerns. Listen to your voice of reason, and stick with your gut.

Many home buyers’ initial fears will fall by the wayside as the buyer gets into the market. Take it slow, and don’t be afraid to take a step back to allow time and space to think things through. It’s better to take your time than to let buying your dream home become a nightmare.


I can help you Buy that Dream House and Navigate the Real Estate Market

Read full post

No doubt you’ll want your home to look its best for visiting family and friends during the holidays. Here are a few cleaning tips to minimize the time you have to spend making things sparkle.


1. Grout and tight corners
Cleaning nooks and crannies doesn’t require elbow grease. A toothbrush is much more effective.


2. Showerhead residue
Fill a plastic bag with vinegar, tie it around the head and leave it overnight to dissolve mineral deposits. A vinegar-soaked rag held in place by a rubber band works, too.


3.  Microwave build-up
Squeeze the juice of half a lemon into a small bowl of water and microwave for about five minutes. The lemon scent eliminates old food smells and condensation from the lemon water loosens caked-on grime, making it much easier to clean.


4. Garage floor
Don’t bother sweeping – a leaf blower is much quicker.


5. Pet hair on furniture
Wet rubber dishwashing gloves are magnets for pet hair. Put on a pair, rub your furniture, and leave the vacuum extension tool in the closet.


6. Ceiling fan
To avoid a shower of dust and dead bugs, use an old pillowcase to clean the fan one blade at a time. Slide the case over the blade and pull it back slowly and the case will capture the dirt.


7. Toilets
Dump a spoonful of Tang into the bowl and let it sit for a few minutes. The citric acid scrubs so you don’t have to.


8. Garbage disposal
Run baking soda and lemon juice, or ice cubes and lemon peels, through your garbage disposal to eliminate odors. White vinegar will do the same for your dishwasher.


Looking for a home that could fit the whole family for the holidays? I can help

Read full post

Spring may still be peak home-shopping season, since most families want to move when the kids are out of school. Yet it actually pays to list in the winter, when buyers tend to have more urgency: A study by online brokerage Redfin found that average sellers net more above asking price during the months of December, January, February, and March than they do from June through November, even in cold-weather cities like Calgary and Toronto. And homes listed in winter sold faster than those posted in spring.

 

Winter buyers are particularly attuned to issues related to heating and maintenance. Get your furnace, HVAC, and roof inspected, and make any necessary repairs. Also on your to-do list: Clean the gutters, change air filters, and weather—strip the windows. Many cold-weather house hunters will also be thinking about heating costs. Consider low-cost upgrades like insulating the attic or installing energy-efficient windows, which can slash utility bills, says Brendon DeSimone, author of Next Generation Real Estate.

 

And create a sense of warmth throughout the home, starting with the living room, where staging can have the greatest impact, according to a National Association of Realtors report. Items like a throw blanket can set the tone since “people are in winter mode,” says Annette DeCicco, a New Jersey regional sales manager at Berkshire Hathaway. Just don’t tie the space to a specific religion or belief, advises Kelly. To stay neutral, use such seasonal touches as stacked wood by the fireplace rather than holiday decorations.

 

As always, de-clutter and depersonalize. Put away family photographs so that buyers can see themselves living in the home; instead display pictures that show what the property looks like when the temperature is warmer, like the garden in full bloom or the backyard in the summertime. Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean buyers can’t appreciate what your home has to offer year-round.

Read full post

 

While small upgrades and minor decor replacements may seem like a waste of time when you’re in a hurry to sell your house, one of the biggest mistakes you can make as a seller is listing your home without any advance preparation.

 

 

 

Be sure you prepare your home for sale — and can check off every item on this list — before you even begin to imagine hanging that “For Sale” sign out front.


 

Clean, clean, clean. Be sure to clean every nook and cranny. Don’t forget overlooked areas, such as dusting the fireplace mantel and ceiling fan blades, polishing appliances and faucets, and washing the windows. If you’ve already moved out or if you’re too busy to do a thorough cleaning, consider hiring a cleaning service.


 

Clear out the clutter. You want buyers to focus on how awesome your space is, not how messy it looks. Banish that pile of shoes from the entry, that stack of mail from the kitchen table, and anything else that detracts from your home’s gorgeous features.


 

Repaint the walls in neutral colors. As much as you love your dramatic red dining room, it could turn off a good portion of your potential buyers. So repaint your rooms in neutral tones such as grays, tans, and whites that allow buyers to focus on the spaces, not the color of the walls.


 

Keep the decor simple. To help buyers imagine themselves in your space, get rid of any statement art or decor that might turn people off. A classic landscape painting? Totally fine. Your zebra-print leather couch? Might want to slip-cover that for showings or rent a storage unit until you’re ready to move it into your new place.


 

Get rid of personal items. Buyers want to be able to envision themselves in your home, so remove anything overly personal, such as the gallery wall of family photos or your kids’ artwork on the fridge.


 

Give each room a purpose. That spare room you’ve been using as an office/guest room/dumping ground won’t help sell your home unless you show buyers how they can use it themselves. So pick a use (office, guest room, crafts room) and clearly stage the space to showcase that purpose.

 

 

 

Turn the bathroom into a spa. Create the feel of a relaxing, luxurious bath — for less than $30. Stack a few pretty washcloths tied with ribbon, add some candles and orchids, and buy bathmats and towels in coordinating tones such as light green, blue, and white.

 

 

 

Lower the toilet seat. When it comes to both showing and photographing your home, this little trick can make a surprising difference.

 

While small upgrades and minor decor replacements may seem like a waste of time when you’re in a hurry to sell your house, one of the biggest mistakes you can make as a seller is listing your home without any advance preparation. - See more at: http://www.trulia.com/blog/21-ways-to-prepare-your-home-for-selling/#20574393
While small upgrades and minor decor replacements may seem like a waste of time when you’re in a hurry to sell your house, one of the biggest mistakes you can make as a seller is listing your home without any advance preparation. - See more at: http://www.trulia.com/blog/21-ways-to-prepare-your-home-for-selling/#20574393
Read full post