Category: selling a home kansas city (13)

Inventory in the Kansas City area continues to be low. According to a recent report from The Kansas City Regional Association of REALTORS & Heartland Multiple Listing Service, inventory of combined new and existing homes in January 2014 was 10,430. This represents a 7% decrease over the same time last year (11,190 in January 2013).

The supply of new and existing homes combined in January was 4.3 months. (Supply is determined by taking the inventory and dividing it by the 12 month average of the number of sales.) This supply is lower than the 5.0 months reported in January 2013. A 4.3 month supply represents a combined seller’s market.

Home Prices KCGood News for Sellers

Sales prices were up! The average sales price for combined new and existing homes in January 2014 was $175,124. In January 2013, the average was $154,814. This equates in a 13% increase.

What does this mean for you? 

If you are buyer already looking, you know inventory is low. As more homes come on the market in the coming weeks, it will be in your best interest to be ready to move quickly when you find the home that is right for you.

If you are preparing to sell your home, you might be able to benefit from the current market conditions if you can get your home listed before the rush of listings we traditionally see in the spring.

Give me a call to discuss your timing for buying or selling – (913) 980-2434. I would be happy to prepare market data to help you determine the best timeframe for you!

KC House HuntersThe Kansas City real estate market has shown strong growth over the past year, and we expect a busy spring season. If you have decided to list your home this spring, take advantage of the motivation we feel at the beginning of a New Year and start getting your home ready now. Getting these steps out of the way during the cold winter months will put you ahead of the competition when your home is ready to go at the start of the season!

Inside Out

While the weather is cold, tackle the interior of your home. But, have a list of exterior projects and supplies on hand for nice days that will pop up between now and spring. This will put you ahead of others who wait until it warms up to start on outdoor projects!

  • Clean. Clean. Clean!  Go through every room of your house and declutter. If it’s easier to manage, break it down and do two or three rooms each week. Remember, buyers need to be able to visualize their things in your space. Clearing personal items, like lots of knick knacks or family photos, is a good idea. While tempting, don’t throw everything in closets. Go ahead and get rid of items that will not make the move. Have a trash, donate and pack pile. This will keep you organized. It will also put you ahead when it’s time to pack for your move!
  • Home Improvements:  First, think of what improvements have been made to the home. You will want this list for your seller’s disclosure. Consider items like your roof, HVAC, windows, flooring, etc. Then, evaluate your home to determine what improvements need to be made to get your home list-ready. Do you have unfinished projects to complete? Does your home need touch-up paint? Are the windows in need of a good clean?
  • Curb Appeal:  Thanks to all the shows on HGTV, most sellers are familiar with the importance curb appeal. Frankly, it can make the difference if potential buyers even walk through your front door. Clean up your landscaping. Consider a fresh coat of paint on the front door or shutters. Plan to plant bright flowers in beds or pots for a fresh, welcoming appearance for new owners.

The Big Picture

Preparing your home for sale is half the battle. The other half is getting you ready – by this I mean your finances, your expectations and your pricing plan. Being well-prepared all the way around can make the process much easier.

  • Finalize Your Finances:  Take a step back and think about the goals of your next purchase. Determine how much you can afford to spend. Find out how much money you will need to put down. Talk with a realtor to get a realistic estimate of what your current home is worth. All of this works together when it’s decision-making time. Knowing where you are financially will make a big difference in starting price and negotiating. And having these parameters set before you get involved with emotions that often come along with buying and selling a home will work to your advantage.
  • Know Why You’re Moving:   What is your motivation for this move? Having a clear reason and goal for your next step can make the process smoother. Buying and selling are both major decisions and investments. It can be emotional and stressful, but having clear reasons for your decisions will guide you.
  • The Price is Right:  There is a strategy to pricing your home right. It’s important to look at recent comps in your area to see what the market will bear. It is also important to talk with a realtor who has experience in your area and that you trust to help determine the right list price for your home. According to SmartMoney Magazine, homeowners consistently overestimate the market value of their homes by 5% to 10%. Getting the price right out the gate can make a huge difference in your selling experience. I will tell you, homes that are priced right will sell quicker.

If you know you are ready to sell, but need help determining where to start or with a to-do list specific for your home, give me a call at (913) 980-2434. I would be happy to come take a look when it is convenient for you. I can also bring a competitive analysis for your area so we can review recent activity and start thinking about an asking price.

Your home will never be “hotter” than the first few days on the market. Coming on with a solid appearance and the right price will increase your odds of a quick sale!!

HomeInspectionJust like when buying a home, there are several steps involved when you decide to put your home on the market. Once you have accepted an offer from a potential buyer, you can expect the buyer’s agent to be in touch soon after to schedule an inspection of your home.

If you did your homework before listing and got your home in tip-top shape, there shouldn’t be much more to do to prepare for this phase of the process. Here are a few items I recommend my sellers address prior to the inspection to help things run as smoothly as possible:

  • Make sure to have your utilities on and all pilot lights lit
  • Have working light bulbs in all fixtures (inside and outside the home)
  • Ensure easy access to the:  furnace (replace filter and vacuum the area so it looks tidy); water heater; electrical panel (the inspector must be able to remove the cover); and attic (remove anything blocking entry and pull items in storage away from the walls)
  • Make sure all windows open and are unlocked
  • Tighten any loose doorknobs, handrails, etc.
  • Have working batteries in all smoke detectors
  • Make sure keys are available to all doors or out buildings (or leave them unlocked)
  • Empty the dishwasher, washer and dryer so they can be tested
  • Pull anything away from walls in the garage, basement or storage areas
  • Remove or restrain pets

No matter how much you prepare, please understand it is rare for an inspection to go through with nothing coming up on the list. That said, each inspector and buyer is different. Until you have the report findings and the buyer’s requests for repair, there’s nothing more for you to do. If you can approach this process with an open mind (and some patience; it can be frustrating) the negotiating that is likely to follow may be easier.

While it can be difficult to feel like you’re back in negotiations, it’s part of the process, and thankfully a fairly quick one at that – the buyer has 10 days from the signed contract to conduct the inspection and get back to you with any repair requests.

I’ve seen deals fall apart after an inspection. And I’ve seen deals come back together that fell apart after inspection! I’ve also seen many more than that move forward with few or no concessions made. My point is, it usually works out for the best.

If you’re getting ready for an inspection and want to discuss or have specific questions about how to prepare your home, I’m happy to help – give me a call any time at (913) 980-2434. Best of luck as you move toward closing!!