Downtown Jersey City Sales Update for March 2016

May 6th, 2016

hat’s the state of the current market in Downtown Jersey City? The Maryanski Realty Group has the latest Sales Update for you.

 

Hoboken Sales Update for March 2016

May 6th, 2016

What’s the state of the current market in Hoboken? The Maryanski Realty Group has the latest Sales Update for you.

Downtown Jersey City Sales Update for February 2016

March 16th, 2016

What’s the state of the current market in Downtown Jersey City?

Hoboken Sales Update for February 2016

March 14th, 2016

What’s the state of the current market in Hoboken?

Because your home doesn’t come with instructions

March 10th, 2016

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Who do I call? We hear this question all the time. When you are new to the area or a first time home buyer and you have a need for a home service professional, what do you do? Who do I contact? We have the answer – HomeKeepr.

HomeKeepr, a home vendor recommendation web and mobile app, connects homeowners and soon-to-be homeowners with a network of home service professionals and local businesses. Unlike Yelp or Angie’s List, which rely on consumer reviews, HomeKeepr’s recommendations are submitted by local businesspeople intimately acquainted with the home and area: real estate agents.

HomeKeepr was launched to solve a problem that every new homeowner encounters: locating trustworthy home service professionals. Because of the intimate nature of contracting with a home service provider (you let them into your home) and potential for a high price tag, you [may] want a recommendation from someone who has had lots of experiences with many different home service providers, someone who would feel accountable for their recommendation, and someone you know and trust.

Rather than crowdsourcing lots of reviews from strangers, HomeKeepr sources recommendations from “local experts:” the Maryanski Realty Group. We created our own personal list of favorite local businesses that our other clients have used successfully and trust, uploaded it to the mobile and web app, and then shared this app with our clients to help them manage and maintain their homes.

Want to try it out yourself and have access to these great home service vendors? Feel free to down the app here: 
http://www.homekeepr.com/join/susan-maryanski

 

Pantone Color of the Year – Marsala

April 29th, 2015

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Introducing Marsala – Pantone 18-1438

A naturally robust and earthy wine red, Marsala enriches our minds, bodies and souls.

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A UNIFYING ELEMENT
The impactful, full-bodied qualities of Marsala make for an elegant, grounded statement color when used on its own or as a strong accent to many other colors.

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A TASTEFUL HUE
Much like the fortified wine that gives Marsala its name, this tasteful hue embodies the satisfying richness of a fulfilling meal while its grounding red-brown roots emanate a sophisticated, natural earthiness.

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A HEARTY YET STYLISH TONE
Add elegance to any room by incorporating this rich and welcoming hue in accent pieces, accessories and paint. Marsala’s plush characteristics are enhanced when the color is applied to textured surfaces, making it an ideal choice for rugs and upholstered living room furniture.

Best time to list a home for sale? Winter

February 24th, 2015

Home For Sale Real Estate Sign in Front of Beautiful New House in the Snow.

So you’ve begun thinking about selling your house and you figure: Let’s wait until the spring or early summer before listing. The yard will look its best and potential buyers will be out in force. And everybody knows that winter is dead time for real estate.

Right? At least that’s the widely held belief. But national statistical studies suggest it’s not necessarily the case. Winter — officially Dec. 21 through March 20 for the upcoming season — can be a surprisingly advantageous time to list, shop, negotiate and buy.

Real estate website Redfin has studied home listing, sale price and time-on-market data from 2010 through this past October from around the country, updating a two-year analysis it completed last year. It concluded that if you want to sell for more than your asking price, listing in December, January, February and March gives you a better chance on average than if you list any time from June through November. During the last three years, listing during those four months has produced higher percentages of above-asking-price sales than listing during any months other than April and May. In 2012, as the housing market rebounded, December listings produced the highest percentage of above-asking sales for the entire year — 17%.

If your goal is to sell relatively quickly, February “is historically the best month to list, with an average of 66% of homes listed then selling within 90 days,” according to Redfin. In the two-year study completed last December, researchers found that in each of 19 major markets, including cold-weather cities such as Boston and Chicago, “home sellers were better off listing their homes in the winter than during any other season.”

Nela Richardson, chief economist for Redfin, said houses “that are priced right and show well can sell any time” of the year. What many potential sellers may not know, however, Richardson said, is that shoppers who are active during the winter months “are serious buyers. Most people are not window-shopping” in December and January, as many do in the spring months.

Also, some sellers pull their unsold houses off the market during the winter, hoping for better results in the spring. By doing so, they leave a smaller inventory of active listings — lessening the competition among sellers who list in January and February, ahead of the pack.

Bottom line: Real estate does not hibernate from December through March. More than 5 million homes typically are resold annually in the U.S., and many of them are listed and sold during the winter months.

Winter is warmer for real estate than you might think.

10 Best “Bangs for the Buck” in Home Remodeling/Staging

March 11th, 2014

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10 Best “Bangs for the Buck” in Home Remodeling/Staging

Boosting a home’s value is easier–and cheaper–than you might think. To get the most bang for your home improvement buck, consider these 10 best home improvements:

1. Landscaping:
Flowers along the sidewalk, in front of the house, inside flower boxes, pouring out of hanging baskets, or even in berms and raised garden beds provide a giant boost to your curb appeal. Planting flowers is one of the easiest, most cost-effective ways to make a big impact. Get recommendations from your local nursery on what plants and flowers thrive in your area. Spending money on plantings that won’t survive through the seasons. Flowerbeds filled with dead annuals don’t say much to buyers during the fall and winter months.

2. Exterior Lighting:
Walkways, sidewalks, perimeter of your house, and the front entry should be lit with ambient lighting. Too dim of lighting on the exterior is a welcome sign for intruders. While too bright of exterior lighting is costly and disturbing to neighbors. Install large-scale exterior lighting to dress up the front of your house. Lighting needs to reflect the scale of the front of your house and not just the wall space next to the front door. It is worth a few extra dollars.

3. Kitchen Appliances:
Invest in matching kitchen appliances. All black, white or stainless steel will give a kitchen a current look. Be ready to haggle: many dealers will match the lowest price offered by the competition. If the price still seems high, see if you can negotiate a deal by buying more than one appliance at a time. When all else fails, ask for free delivery and installation or a free extended warranty.

4. Kitchen Cabinets:
Reface or replace worn kitchen cabinets. Replacing cabinets is typically the priciest part of a kitchen remodel. If your old cabinets are plumb, square, and sturdy, consider refinishing them with some simple sanding, painting or staining, and drilling. You can even dress them up with custom-built doors, possibly with glass panes, and still save a bundle over all-new cabinets. Even having a cabinetmaker reface old cabinets with veneer costs less than replacing them.

5. Bathroom Fixtures:
Get rid of outdated bathroom fixtures like pink toilets and seashell sinks. Buyers love white toilets, tubs and sinks. Focus on the visuals: nice tile, nice colors, nice fixtures… and don’t spend a lot on the high-end utilities because most people can’t tell the difference.

6. Flooring:
Refinish worn hardwood floors. If you have older carpets over hardwood floors, pull it up. Hardwood is always a plus. Many people prefer it for its “warm” look and its ability to blend rooms — ideal in houses that boast open-floor plans. No hardwoods? The alternative and cheaper option to hardwood flooring is engineered flooring. Rather than comprising of one sole plank, an engineered floor is manufactured using multiple layers of chip composite, with a layer of chosen wood on the surface. For those that are actually worried about the quality of engineered flooring, you may be happy to know that between engineered and solid flooring, there is actually no visual difference; much of it falls solely on the price.

7. Clean & Declutter:
If it is dirty clean it, and if it’s broken fix it. Leaving a to-do list for the buyer could end up costing you tens of thousands of dollar, whereas paying a handyman might cost you only a couple of thousand. Remember that the less stuff there is in your home when you start painting and staging it, the less hassle there will be and the cleaner and more spacious your home will appear. As sentimental as your things might seem to you, buyers want to be able to imagine themselves in your space; seeing clothes in the closet, family photos, and random tchotchkes prevents them from doing so.

8. Coordinating Hardware:
You must try to match the hardware throughout each room of the home. Mixing brass, chrome, and brushed nickel on your doors, hinges and faucets are downright ugly. Go for something moderately priced because these items can add up. Also matching faucets with cabinet hardware creates a unified look that’s appropriate for small spaces such as a powder room.

9. Carpeting:
Install inexpensive, low-pile neutral carpeting when a good cleaning won’t suffice. Carpet is a popular choice for bedrooms and playrooms. It’s soft, reduces noise, provides safety from slips and falls, stabilizes temperature, and is never cold on your feet.

10. Neutral Colors:
The colors potential buyers see when they enter your home should be neutral so that the buyers will not be distracted by someone else’s style. They should see the walls of your home as a blank canvas on which to project their own preferences and style. And why is painting your house in order to sell your home so important? How about a major return on investment! The average price to paint interior walls is $500 to $750, but that increases a home price by an average of $1,500 to $2,000 — which can be a 250 percent return on investment.

One of the most important things to keep in mind when considering any home improvement project is to not go overboard. The value of your home is partially determined by the value of your neighbor’s homes, so don’t make improvements that bring your home’s value significantly over the general value of other homes in your neighborhood. Although making home improvements is not a sure-fire way to increase the value, it will at the very least make you more competitive against your competition.

 

Should I Rent My House If I Can’t Sell It?

March 5th, 2014

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recent study has concluded that 39% of buyers prefer to rent out their last residence rather than sell it when purchasing their next home.

The study cites that many homeowners were able to refinance and “locked in a very low mortgage rate in recent years. That low rate, combined with a strong rental market, means they can charge more in rent than they pay in mortgage each month, so they are going for it.”

This logic makes sense in some cases. We  believe strongly that residential real estate is a great investment right now. However, if you have no desire to actually become an educated investor in this sector, you may be headed for more trouble than you were looking for. Are you ready to be a landlord?

Before renting your home, you should answer the following questions to make sure this is the right course of action for you and your family.

10 Questions to Ask BEFORE Renting Your Home

1.) How will you respond if your tenant says they can’t afford to pay the rent this month because of more pressing obligations? (This happens most often during holiday season and back-to-school time when families with children have extra expenses).

2.) Because of the economy, many homeowners can no longer make their mortgage payment. What percent of tenants do you think can no longer afford to pay their rent?

3.) Have you interviewed a few experienced eviction attorneys in case a challenge does arise?

4.) Have you talked to your insurance company about a possible increase in premiums as liability is greater in a non-owner occupied home?

5.) Will you allow pets? Cats? Dogs? How big a dog?

6.) How will you actually collect the rent? By mail? In person?

7.) Repairs are part of being a landlord. Who will take tenant calls when necessary repairs arise?

8.) Do you have a list of craftspeople readily available to handle these repairs?

9.) How often will you do a physical inspection of the property?

10.) Will you alert your current neighbors that you are renting the house?

Bottom Line

Again, renting out residential real estate historically is a great investment. However, it is not without its challenges. Make sure you have decided to rent the house because you want to be an investor, not because you are hoping to get a few extra dollars by postponing a sale.

Courtesy of Keeping Current Matters

5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional

March 4th, 2014

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Whether you are buying or selling a home, you need an experienced Real Estate Professional to lead you toward your ultimate goal. In this world of instant gratification and Internet searches, many sellers think that they can For Sale by Owner or FSBO.

The 5 Reasons You NEED a Real Estate Professional in your corner haven’t changed, but rather have been strengthened in recent months with the Federal Government continuing to taper bond purchases and the impact that decision has had on mortgage rates.

1. What do you do with all this paperwork?

Each state has different regulations regarding the contracts required for a successful sale, and these regulations are constantly changing. A true Real Estate Professional is an expert in their market and can guide you through the stacks of paperwork necessary to make your dream a reality.

2. Ok, so you found your dream house, now what?

According to the Orlando Regional REALTOR Association, there are over 230 possible actions that need to take place during every successful real estate transaction. Don’t you want someone who has been there before, who knows what these actions are to make sure that you acquire your dream?

3. Are you a good negotiator?

So maybe you’re not convinced that you need an agent to sell your home. However, after looking at the list of parties that you need to be prepared to negotiate with, you’ll realize the value in selecting a Real Estate Professional. From the buyer (who wants the best deal possible), to the home inspection companies, to the appraiser, there are at least 11 different people that you will have to be knowledgeable with and answer to, during the process.

4. What is the home you’re buying/selling really worth?

Not only is it important for your home to be priced correctly from the start, to attract the right buyers and shorten the time that it’s on the market, but you also need someone who is not emotionally connected to your home, to give you the truth as to your home’s value.

According to the National Association of REALTORS“the typical FSBO home sold for $184,000 compared to $230,000 among agent-assisted home sales.”

Get the most out of your transaction by hiring a professional.

5. Do you know what’s really going on in the market?

There is so much information out there on the news and the Internet about home sales, prices, mortgage rates; how do you know what’s going on specifically in your area? Who do you turn to, to tell you how to competitively price your home correctly at the beginning of the selling process? How do you know what to offer on your dream home without paying too much, or offending the seller with a low-ball offer?

“When getting help with money, whether it’s insurance, real estate or investments, you should always look for someone with the heart of a teacher, not the heart of a salesman.” – Dave Ramsey

Hiring an agent who has their finger on the pulse of the market will make your buying/selling experience an educated one. You need someone who is going to tell you the truth, not just what they think you want to hear.

Bottom Line:

You wouldn’t hike up Kilimanjaro without a Sherpa, or replace the engine in your car without a trusted mechanic, why would you make one of your most important financial decisions of your life without hiring a Real Estate Professional?

Courtesy of Keeping Current Matters