The Importance of Carbon Monoxide Detectors

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What is Carbon Monoxide?
Carbon monoxide is a poisonous gas that cannot be seen or smelled and can kill an individual within minutes of contact. Carbon monoxide can quickly build to unsafe levels in enclosed or poorly ventilated areas.

What Are Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?
Initial symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can include headaches, dizziness, fatigue, weakness, confusion and nausea. Low-level carbon monoxide poisoning can include symptoms similar to illnesses such as the flu.

As these may be difficult symptoms to diagnose, they could be a sign of carbon monoxide poisoning if:

  • Symptoms go away when you leave your home, and come back when you return.
  • Everyone in the home experiences similar symptoms at the same time.

 

What Should You Do if You Suspect a Carbon Monoxide Leak in Your Home?

If you suspect a carbon monoxide leak in your home, gather your family outside in the fresh air and immediately call 911.

  • During power outages, never use charcoal or gas grills indoors or in enclosed spaces. Do not burn charcoal in a fireplace, as charcoal does not produce a draft strong enough to push the carbon monoxide outside.
  • Never use a generator inside your home, garage, carport, basement, or near an opening into your home while outside. Generators should be kept at least 20 feet from buildings in the hope that airflow will direct carbon monoxide flows away from the home.
  • Never use a gas range or oven to heat your home and do not sleep in a room using an unvented gas or kerosene heater.

 

When is the Right Time to Sell Your Home?

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Have you been interested in selling your home, but still wonder when the best time will be?

Here are a few reasons why NOW is the time to list your home for sale in Anacortes:

– SUPPLY AND DEMAND –

Inventory in Anacortes is low, but the demand remains high! Because of this, it is currently a sellers market. Homes listed for sale that are priced correctly are selling very quickly!

– FEWER CASH BUYERS – 

In the past few years, all-cash and investment buyers have maintained the real estate market. With fewer all-cash buyers, the price growth in the housing market will make for more stable and sustainable growth.

– INCREASE IN INTEREST RATES –

It is predicted that mortgage rates are going to rise in the near future; this will encourage buyers to make their move in purchasing sooner rather than later.

– RISING COST OF RENT –

As the price of rent increases, tenants become potential buyers and want to invest rent money towards owning a home.

Before you decide if now the right time to sell your home is, contact Team Groesbeck to discuss your options. Our team of honest and experience brokers will guide you every step of the way, beginning with a no obligation comparative market analysis (CMA) of your property, in addition to a complimentary staging consultation for our clients.

To schedule an appointment with us or for more information, we are available daily at (360) 941-3734 or by email at Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com. As the #1 seller of pre-owned properties in Skagit County, Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. are market experts and can assist with all of your real estate needs, providing you 5 Star Real Estate Services since 2002!

Timing is Everything!

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All home sellers want the most money for their home within the shortest time frame possible. How do you know what is the right price to ask for when listing your home for sale?

Timing is everything! Some real estate agents use the assessed value of the home as a basis for value. The assessed value of your home is not necessarily today’s market value. For example, Skagit County home values are only based on a drive-by viewing done once every four years!

What if you remodeled the interior of your home or added a room to your home? What if a neighbor’s tree was removed, improving your view? Or a neighbor’s tree now blocks your view? All of these have dramatic impacts on price.

Home staging also impacts the appeal of your home and pricing. Are you willing to do some staging? It has been proven that staged homes sell for a higher price, and in less time, which is why we offer all of our sellers free staging consultations.

Recent home sales impact the value of your home, but only if the right “comps” are used. Only homes of a similar age and style should be used, and if your home has been completely remodeled, then the “effective year built” could be used to determine the right comps to use. However, if only the kitchen was remodeled and the rest of the home is dated, then the actual year built is what should be used with an adjustment for the remodeled kitchen.

Current inventory of homes for sale with your amenities is a critical factor to consider, as is the absorption rate (how many months of inventory are on the market) and whether the inventory is growing or shrinking. The market price of real estate is always based on supply and demand, and demand is high in Anacortes currently while inventory remains low!

How much money you have put into your home does not always increase the value of your home. For example, if your home is in Anacortes and your neighbors with the identical home converted one bay of their double car garage to a family room and you have a two car a garage, your home is probably worth about $10,000 more, even though your neighbor has more money invested into his home.

The real estate market has shifted.

If you are considering a move, this is an excellent window of opportunity to sell because we are low of inventory and the pent up demand of buyers is being felt with active sales in most price ranges.

If you are thinking of selling your home in 2017, please call Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC  today to discuss what you should be doing now be to be ready sell your home quickly. We can be reached daily at (360) 941-3734 and via email at Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com.

Staging Your Home to Sell

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Before staging and after staging

When you list your home with Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC, we provide of our clients with a complimentary staging consultation because we understand the importance of making a great first impression to a buyer.

By decorating and arranging a home’s interior to present an ideal way of life, buyers are assisted in visualizing themselves in your home. Whether you undertake the process of staging your own home or decide to consult a professional, there are a number of different “props” that may be used around the home. For example, to add a vibrant sense of life to the home, many home staging professionals recommend using different types of potted plants and arrangements of flowers and fruit. Throughout the home, they tend to utilize soft, luxurious fabrics such as satin, lamb’s wool and silk to create an atmosphere of comfort. This process can also extend to the exterior of the property, where patio furniture can be added in the backyard and colorful flowers or unique accessories outside the front door.

Many home staging professionals come from interior design or art-related backgrounds. Hence, when working on staging a home for sale, these professionals utilize a number of visual tricks to capture the attention of potential buyers. For instance, furniture is always arranged very carefully to simulate the ideal living space. In living rooms, home staging professionals often use love seats and ottomans in lieu of large couches to create the illusion of added space. Likewise, mirrors are often placed throughout a staged home to make the living area seem larger to potential buyers.

One of the most important steps in home staging is the exchange of your personal decorations with more neutral furnishings. Beyond replacing family pictures with more design-friendly items, a successful home staging will attempt to eliminate any idiosyncratic tastes and represent a living space that has broad appeal. This commonly used tactic simply helps potential buyers view the property not as someone else’s home, but as something they can call their own.

Without any furniture or amenities, even a home for sale in the most attractive area can make potential buyers feel uncomfortable. If you are trying to sell your home and have already moved out, you may want to consider working with your agent to stage the home’s interior. With the assistance of your agent and a home staging professional, you could quickly transform a lifeless house into dream home.

In the end, home staging is about making the most of your home’s potential. If the staging of your home is completed effectively, it is also possible that your home may receive better offers from potential buyers and spend less time on the market. By minimizing the flaws of your home and making the living area seem larger, brighter and more appealing, home staging may be one of the most important steps in selling your home quickly and at the right price.

We look forward to working for you and assisting with all of your real estate needs. Contact us today at (360) 941-3734 or at Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com.

2017 Home Design Trends

As the #1 selling brokers of pre-owned properties in Skagit County, Team Groesbeck knows real estate and the following are highly sought after among our buyers. We would be happy to discuss any of your real estate needs or renovation thoughts with you to ensure you get top dollar when it is time to sell!

The following list is from Realtor Mag, the official magazine of the National Association of REALTORS:

Community Gathering Spaces – Clubhouses, fitness centers and outdoors spaces are often desirable perks for families and individuals when seeking a new home.

Taupe in the New Gray – A flexible and warm neutral shade, Sherwin-Williams named “Poised Taupe” as its 2017 Color of the Year.1216_AC_trends2

More Playful Homes – Space in the yard for a putting green or a game of boccie ball appeal to many for outdoor activities, or perhaps an indoor bonus room for the kids to play or a place to enjoy a pool table.

Naturally Renewable, Warmer Surfaces – Renewable materials like cork, harvested from the bark of cork oak trees, has become a favorite material as it is resistant to mold, mildew, water, termites, fire, cracking and abrasions.

Surface-Deep Energy Conservation – As energy costs rise, energy-wise appliances and more efficient HVAC systems appeal to homeowners looking to save on their utility bills.

More Authentic, Personalized Use of Space – Making every space within the home count is a very popular need for many home buyers. Being mindful of the home’s layout, storage space, bonus space, garage, room to entertain, etc. are things buyers would like designated areas for today.1216_AC_trends6

The Walkable Suburb – The convenience of being able to walk or bike to shops and dining and cutting commute times are often top priorities for home buyers.

Healthier Homes – Consumers are more aware now than ever of hazardous indoor environments and are actively seeking out healthy water supplies such as purifiers, HVAC systems, such as nontoxic plants and adhesives. A newer element to this trend in 2017 will include enhanced environmental testing.

Shifting Hearths – The traditional log-burning fireplace has lost some appeal as homeowners realize it is less energy-efficient, however there are various options today including gas fireplaces or even new ventless alcohol-burning, as well as outdoor fireplaces.

Counter Options – Much like granite did, quartz and quartzite are predicted to be kitchen favorites until another material comes along. But other green laminate options are gaining in popularity, and they’re no longer just for the budget-minded consumer.

The Transforming Office – Regular work-from-home time among the non–self-employed population has grown by 103 percent since 2005. Having a designated work space at home is becoming more of a necessity for many than just a desire.

Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC knows real estate throughout Anacortes, Skagit, Island and San Juan counties and can assist with all of your real estate needs! Contact us today with any questions or to schedule a complimentary, no obligation market analysis of your home. We can be reached daily at (360) 941-3734 or at Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com. We look forward to working for you!

Expediting the Sale of Your Home

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It is our goal to sell your home in the shortest amount of time; however there are some things that the seller will need to do to help make this process successful.  Our team of dedicated and full-time brokers is the number one sellers of pre-owned properties in Skagit County and we know what appeals to buyers!

Things we recommend to each seller:

  • Staging makes a home more appealing.  It does not need to be expensive, but may involve a little work.  If you want to get the highest price for your home, we recommend professionally staging the home.  Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC can provide guidance on economical ways to stage your home and we offer free staging consultations.
  • Call your insurance company to let them know your house is on the market.
  • Complete Form 17, the Seller’s Disclosure Form, and return it to our office as soon as possible.  Make sure that you answer each question to the best of your knowledge.  Marking most answers “I Don’t Know” is a red flag for potential buyers.
  • For your own safety, do not let anyone into your home for a “look around” who is not with a verifiable real estate agent.
  • Real estate agents must access your home by using the lock box.  This will allow us to have a record of who gained access to your home. Even if you let them in, have them “log in” to the lock box.
  • The buyer(s) may have requested a home inspection as part of the contract. They will schedule this on their own, however they will let us know the date and time. You should not be home when the inspection takes place, as the buyer(s) will feel more comfortable talking candidly with their inspector and agent.

For all of your real estate needs in and around Anacortes, please contact Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC at Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com or (360) 941-3734.

Should you sell your home now?

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Selling your home is a huge decision that often causes extra (and unwanted) stress.  Deciding when to sell your home is not always only about the money, but a lifestyle change.

Anacortes-based Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC is a team of experienced and professional real estate brokers who know the market in Anacortes, throughout Skagit County, and beyond.  Even if you are interested in seeing what your home is worth or interested in selling in a few months, contact us early to begin the process.  Allowing for ample time to get your home and finances in order will allow for a smoother process later.

Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC doesn’t just list homes, we sell them.  We utilize our resources online, social media, throughout the area to promote your property ensuring that we will get you an offer that is best for you – and we will guide the process along the way.

Our team of dedicated and full-time brokers is the number one sellers of pre-owned properties in Skagit County.  Don’t wait; call us today at (360) 941-3734.

We look forward to working for you.

Winter Home Selling Tips

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There is no need to wait until spring to sell your home! Inventory is low and demand remains high in Anacortes and Skagit County.  Even if you are on the fence about selling, contact Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC for a complimentary, no obligation comparative market analysis of your home.  It is not too early to begin the process to ensure things run smoothly later.

Here are some tips to get the most out of selling your home during the winter:

Price competitively – There is often less completion in the winter, but if your home is priced too high people will look elsewhere.  Price appropriately from the start to get the most attention!

Get professional photos – Studies have shown that homes listed using professional photos sell for more money.  Even if your lawn is covered in snow and the leaves have fallen off the trees, high quality photos taken with professional cameras look best.

Keep up with exterior maintenance – Make sure the “for sale” sign is free of debris and visible, snow and leaves are clear from the walkway, driveway, roof and deck or patio spaces.

Let light in – Keep your home inviting by allowing the light in, even when the winter months can be dark and gloomy.  Keeping the heat and lights on (indoors and outdoors) allow for the home to be properly seen at all hours of the day.

Stay tidy – Winter can be tricky to keep a home tidy with the holidays and visitors, but by keeping coats, boots, umbrellas and other items out of view and regular cleaning up kept, your home will always be ready to be shown.

Plan open houses accordingly – Knowing the schedule of the local football team and being aware of local events can ensure that people will be available to attend your open house, free of distraction.

Anacortes-based Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC can assist with all of your real estate needs.  Proudly serving Anacortes, Skagit and San Juan counties and beyond, call us today at (360) 941-3734 or email to Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com.  We look forward to working with you!

Selling Your Home During Winter: Dos & Don’ts

While it looks like the plants on this home are still growing, the mulch gives a much cleaner look than dead grass.

While it looks like the plants on this home are still growing, the mulch gives a much cleaner look than dead grass.

Staging: While decorating your home for the holidays, it is easy to get carried away with decorations and unintentionally hide some of your home’s greatest features.  Keep decorating to a minimum to avoid clutter and not to overwhelm visitors.  Having an inviting and cozy home is a great way to help a potential buyer view what they could be purchasing.

Pricing: During the wintertime, home prices play a huge role in whether people will look at your home. You want to stay away from pricing your home too high because your house may stay on the market longer. To price correctly, not only reference similar houses and their closing prices, but also the prices of homes for sale currently on the real estate market that have similar features. Here is a great form to figure out that perfect selling price.

Schedule a home tune-up: Hire a home inspector or specific professionals to check-up on your furnace, chimney and roof. These are especially important during the wintertime as many people will be thinking about heating costs. If you know there may be problems, consider inexpensive upgrades such as adding insulation to your attic.

Curb Appeal: Despite the grass turning brown during winter, you can still make your yard look appealing.  Pulling dead plants, pruning trees and adding mulch to flower beds can make a big difference while nothing is growing.

Maximize your lighting: Make sure both the exterior and interior of your home are well lit. Since natural light isn’t going to have much to offer during this time, a nicely lit room with lighting that isn’t too harsh is a great way to warm up a home.  Holiday lighting on the outside of your house can also make it look more inviting.

If you are considering buying a home in Skagit CountyOak Harbor, or Anacortes, a great place to start is our website. If you are looking to put your house on the market in the coming months or just want to entertain the option of how much your house is worth, contact us today at Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com or by calling (360) 941-3734.

 

Protect Your Investment: Prepare Your Home for Winter

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Autumn is officially underway and it is time to prepare your home for the upcoming winter months.  Properly winterizing your home is sure to be a worthy investment as it may reduce the risk of home issues later.

Common ways to protect your home and its value include:

  • Check the heating system by consulting with a licensed professional to ensure heat is being distributed evenly and all vents are open.
  • Secure windows and doors properly using caulking or weather-stripping materials to assist with reducing heating costs.
  • Inspect the roof for cracks or signs of damaged shingles, as well as cracked seals around the chimney and vents, so they can be repaired to avoid future water damage. Also, a professional inspection of the chimney will ensure it is safe for use to provide cozy fires all season.
  • Clean all gutters and remove leaves and other debris as water can collect and cause potential roof and siding damage.
  • Turn off all exterior faucets to avoid pipes freezing by disconnecting all garden hoses and draining any remaining water from the hose and faucet.

Protect your investment – your home might be worth more than you think.  Jean Groesbeck & Associates can help with all of your home buying and selling needs, in addition to accurately determining your home’s value.

Visit us online at www.JeanGroesbeck.com, at Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com or (360) 941-3734.