RE/MAX Executive Realty



Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/22/2018

You may take your front door for granted. Maybe you only use your front door occasionally when company comes or you have a gathering at your home. It’s amazing how much more curb appeal you can give to your home with a properly lit front door. Below, you’ll find some tips to help you brighten your front door and the overall appeal of your home. 


Make Your Front Door Shine Through The Night


If you want your home to have curb appeal, you may think of the daylight hours. Sure, you want your home to look good during the day, but there are 24 hours! You can find plenty of ways that you can add nighttime curb appeal to your home with correct types of landscape lighting. Some ideas to help you highlight your front door can be found below:


Put a spotlight on the entryway


Using bold lighting like this can help you to enhance the features that are already present on the front of your home.     


Use sconce lighting

This type of lighting is easily mounted onto the side of walls or the side of your home. You can use these types of lights to add to the style of your home as they come in many different kinds from the stately to the fun and whimsical. These lights also provide quite a welcoming touch to the home.


Consider Lighting Your House Number


Wherever your house number is present, you should try to light it. This way, after daylight hours, guests can clearly see what house number is yours. You can do this with a lamp post or a spotlight depending on where you have your house numbers mounted. 


Use Lighting Variations


Just as you would on the inside of your home, the outside of your home should use variations of lighting. Use sconces for overhead lighting. Think of the lighting on the outside of your home based on the main types of lighting: task, decorative, ambient, and accent lighting. Using these basic design principles can help you to find where the need for light is in your yard.


Highlight Your Landscape


Your hard efforts at landscaping aren’t just for the daylight hours. Use lighting in your yard as a way to highlight the beauty of your yard the whole day and night through. If you have particularly unique trees or bushes, or a nice statue in your yard, use lights to brighten the space and show off the best features that your yard has to offer.

When thinking of lighting your yard keep safety as your first priority and design as your second for a great outdoor lighting scheme.    





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Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/22/2018

The more you know about the process of buying a house, the better prepared you'll be for doing it successfully.

How might you define "success" when it comes to purchasing a home?

There are a lot of standards that could be applied to successfully navigating the home buying process, but here are a few that immediately come to mind:

  • Finding the house of your dreams: While very few people find a home that is absolutely perfect in every way, it is possible to come close to achieving that ideal. Although a certain amount of flexibility goes a long way, knowing what you want and prioritizing important features are among the main prerequisites to getting what you want. As baseball legend Yogi Berra once said, "If you don't know where you are going, you'll end up someplace else." Thanks to the variety of websites devoted to home ownership, home decorating, remodeling, and landscaping, it's easy to find pictures online that can help inspire your imagination and clarify exactly what the house of your dreams might look like.
  • Minimizing setbacks and frustrations: The process of house hunting is a journey that often involves bumpy roads, detours, and dead ends. One secret to getting through it successfully is to work with an experienced real estate agent who knows the ropes and can keep you on track. It also helps to approach house hunting with a sense of optimism, resourcefulness, and commitment. Although you probably have a lot of competing priorities in your life, finding a house that you and your family will be happy in for the next few years deserves a top spot on your list!
  • Avoiding unpleasant surprises: Knowing your credit score and understanding the impact it will have on getting loan approval and a favorable interest rate will help prepare you for the financial side of buying a house. The ability to get prequalified for a mortgage and come up with sufficient down payment will also set the stage for a successful home buying experience. On the plus side, a higher down payment can potentially result in a lower interest rate and not having to pay private mortgage insurance (A 20% down payment is necessary to avoid PMI.) Since many loan programs and lenders require at least a 3-5% down payment, that can be a stumbling block for first-time home buyers. To purchase a $200,000 home, for example, you'd need to come up with a cash outlay of between $6,000 to $10,000 -- not an easy feat for everyone!
If coming up with a sufficient down payment is an issue for you, your real estate agent or loan officer can work with you to brainstorm possible solutions and alternative strategies. For some first-time home buyers, the best plan is to postpone your house buying plans for a couple years until you can improve your credit score and set aside several thousand dollars for a down payment.





Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/15/2018

Applying for a mortgage can be a lengthy and difficult process. Lenders want to know that they are going to get a return on their investment.

To ensure that they’ll see that positive return they will take a number of things into consideration, such as your income, credit score, employment history, and financial capital.

First-time homeowners often struggle when it comes to these prerequisites since they have fewer years of numbers for lenders to consider. If you’re one of those people, don’t worry--you can still purchase a home.

First-time homeowner loans, which are guaranteed by the U.S. government, and a number of private loans enable people to borrow money for a home without paying a huge down payment or having a vast credit history.

One downfall of said loans is private mortgage insurance, or “PMI.”

In this article, we’re going to talk about what private mortgage insurance is, how to avoid it, and how to get rid of it. 

What is PMI?

If you make a down payment on a mortgage that is less than 20% of the loan amount, you will most likely have to pay private mortgage insurance.

PMI exists as a way for lenders to help guarantee they won’t lose money off of your loan. If you make a down payment of 20% or more, then lenders are typically satisfied that they won’t lose money from doing business with you.

PMI is not to be confused with home insurance, which protects you against damage and theft. Rather, it is an additional fee you’ll pay to your lender each month that is added to your mortgage payment.

PMI is calculated based on a few considerations. Lenders will take into account your down payment amount, the value of the mortgage, and your credit score.

In terms of costs, PMI typically costs between .5 and 1% of the total mortgage amount each year.

Avoiding PMI

Naturally, it’s best to avoid paying private mortgage insurance altogether. Private mortgage insurance has no future value for you and your family since it doesn’t count towards building equity and doesn’t protect you from any potential financial harm (your lender is the sole beneficiary of PMI).

Saving for a down payment can take time, and sometimes you’ll need to rent or cut costs while you save. However, if you do take on a loan with PMI, you can still cancel it at a later point.

Canceling your private mortgage insurance

The first thing you should know about canceling PMI is that it usually isn’t easy. You’ll need pay off at least 20% of the home, write a letter to your lender, and wait for an appraisal of the home. Once you’ve done this, you still have to wait while your lender considers your request. In all, this process could take months--months that you’re still required to pay PMI.

Once common way to get out of PMI is to refinance. If the value of your home has increased since the time of you taking on the loan, the new lender likely won’t require PMI. However, you’ll want to make sure that refinancing will get you a lower interest rate and cover the costs of refinancing. 




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Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/15/2018

If you are preparing to sell your house, you need to be honest with yourself and others. That way, you can increase the likelihood of a fast, profitable home selling experience.

Ultimately, it pays to be an honest home seller for a number of reasons, including:

1. You can establish a competitive price for your house.

It is important to understand that what your house is worth today is unlikely to match what you paid for it, regardless of when you bought your home. Fortunately, an honest home seller is realistic about his or her house's value and can plan accordingly.

Generally, an honest home seller will allocate the necessary time and resources to conduct a home appraisal. Because with an appraisal report in hand, this home seller can establish a competitive price for his or her house based on actionable data.

2. You can identify home problems before a buyer does.

If a home seller tries to hide home problems from a buyer, the consequences could be significant. In fact, a seller may put a potential home sale in jeopardy if he or she fails to be forthright and honest with buyers from the get-go.

For example, consider what might happen if a buyer submits an offer on a house and discovers myriad home problems during an inspection. In this scenario, a buyer may ask the seller to perform various home repairs or request a price reduction. Or, a buyer may choose to walk away from a home sale altogether.

As a home seller, it helps to take an honest approach to inform potential buyers about the condition of a house. If a residence requires assorted repairs, a seller may want to complete these repairs before listing his or her residence.

Comparatively, a seller can always include information about a home's condition in a house listing. If a seller does so, he or she can help buyers make an informed decision about a possible home purchase.

3. You can avoid rash decisions throughout the home selling journey.

An honest home seller usually is calm, cool and collected throughout the home selling journey. This seller understands the pros and cons of his or her house, and as such, can take an informed, logical approach to make the best-possible decisions.

Perhaps most important, an honest home seller is unafraid to receive negative feedback about his or her house. As a result, this seller may be better equipped than others to avoid rash decisions during the home selling journey.

There are many great reasons why a home seller should strive to be honest at each stage of the home selling cycle. Of course, if you need extra help as you sell your house, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well.

Typically, a real estate agent will provide honest, unbiased home selling recommendations and suggestions. He or she will even help you get your house ready for the real estate market. And with this housing market professional's support, a home seller can move closer to achieving his or her desired results.




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Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/8/2018

As a home seller, it is essential to dedicate the necessary time and resources to enhance your house's interior. By doing so, you'll be able to help your residence stand out from other properties that are available.

Unfortunately, your home's basement may be an eyesore, especially if you have failed to keep it clean consistently. But with the right approach to cleaning your basement, you should have no trouble improving your basement's appearance.

What can you do to revamp your house's basement? Here are three basement cleaning tips that every home seller needs to know.

1. Scrub the Walls and Floors with a Cleaning Solution

If your basement features a concrete or concrete-block surface, a combination of detergent, ammonia and warm water may prove to be ideal. In fact, this mix produces a wonderful cleaning solution that will deliver immediate and long-lasting results.

Don't forget to use a stiff nylon brush to remove dirt and grime from concrete walls and floors. Plus, if you need to eliminate excess water from the basement, be sure to use a shop vacuum to remove this water immediately.

2. Eliminate Rust Stains

Basement rust stains won't do you any favors as you try to help your home stand out from the competition. Lucky for you, rust stains can be easily removed from your basement walls with a little bit of dry cement and flagstone.

Sprinkle a small amount of dry cement on a rust stain. Then, use flagstone to scrub the affected area and remove the stain instantly. This will allow you to remove rust stains and ensure they won't come back any time soon.

3. Revamp Your Basement Floors

For those who want to transform an ordinary basement into a stellar one, now may be a great time to redo the basement floors. Thankfully, you won't have to break your budget to revamp your basement floors if you use a waterproof stain.

A waterproof stain is simple to apply and can give your basement floors a clean, streamlined appearance.

Before you apply a waterproof stain, you'll want to scrub the basement floors thoroughly. After the floor is dry, use a short-nap paint roller to apply the stain in small sections. Let the stain dry for about 24 hours, and you'll be able to enjoy beautiful basement floors that are sure to grab homebuyers' attention.

When it comes to cleaning your basement, it is important to remember that you don't necessarily have to do the work alone. Instead, you can always hire a professional cleaning company to assist you.

A professional cleaning company will be able to simplify the process of cleaning your home's basement, along with other rooms throughout your property. That way, you can leave home cleaning tasks to the professionals and focus on what's important – finding the best ways to generate substantial interest in your residence.

Perhaps best of all, working with a real estate agent can make it easy to sell your house. This real estate agent can provide honest, unbiased home selling recommendations, set up home showings and open houses and much more. As a result, a real estate agent will ensure you can optimize the value of your residence.




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