Tips For Living in a Staged Home

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Your home is on the market, pristine and expertly staged to get it sold. Now what? How do you still live in your home and keep it in perfect condition – especially for the unexpected showing?

Here are some simple tricks to keeping your home spotless:

KEEP IT CLEAN

 

Kitchen:

  • Remove all of your kitchen appliances from the counters. Do not use them; keep clean and hidden.
  • Have one set of cups, plates and utensils for each family member neatly stored in a cabinet. Use only these dishes and hand wash after every use. Do not leave dirty dishes in the sink or out in a dish rack. Eat, drink, wash, dry and put away.
  • Use recycled paper plates and cups to limit dishwashing.
  • Keep only the essentials in the refrigerator and pantry (potential buyers are known to look inside). Unused pantry items can be donated to your local food bank.

 

Bathrooms:

  • No personal care products (soap, shampoo, lotion, toothbrush, etc.) should be left out. Give each family member a bathroom tote to hold their daily-used products, to be put away into a closed cabinet after each use.
  • Keep antibacterial wipes under the sink for quick and easy cleanup after each sink and shower use.
  • Use stick-on toilet cleaners inside the bowls to keep toilets clean and smelling fresh.
  • Only guest towels should be displayed in the bathrooms. Each family member should have his or her own set of towels, to be washed regularly and kept out of sight.

 

Bedrooms:

  • Keep all nightstands and dresser tops clear of personal items. Purchase plastic containers with lids that can easily slide under beds to store reading glasses, books, journals, medications, tissue boxes, etc.
  • Be sure to make the beds each morning; that way there is one less thing to do when a showing is scheduled.
  • Keep all clothing items neatly put away and laundry baskets hidden in closets.
  • Wash, dry, fold and put away laundry on a daily basis if necessary.

 

Living Room:

  • To maintain a tidy living room, keep daily-used items (remote controls, DVDs, video games, children’s toys, etc.) hidden away in closed drawers, cabinets or storage ottomans.
  • Do not let newspapers, magazines or mail stack up; file away or recycle immediately. Perhaps keep the latest newspaper in your car; it may come in handy when showings are scheduled and you need to head out to a coffee shop or other fun destination.

 

Eating & Entertainment

  • By now you may be thinking, “How does my family eat?” It is best to go out to eat during this time. Even take-out is a no-no; the goal is to keep your home smelling like fresh flowers, not fried chicken.
  • To stay on a budget, visit websites like Groupon or Restaurants.com for deals and coupons. Also, look into daily/weekly meal deals at your local restaurants, like $2 Taco Tuesdays or where kids can “eat free.”
  • Get your whole family involved and make a list of activities to do on the days your house is scheduled to be shown. Ideas include bowling, going to the beach, zoo, museums, amusement parks, or even visiting relatives.

 

Pets

  • Perhaps a family member, friend or neighbor can take care of your beloved four-legged family members, or designate 1-2 rooms for your pets to live in. This will keep the fur cleanup to a minimum.

 

With any questions or additional moving resources, please contact Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC daily! We are available to assist with all of your real estate needs and can be reached at (360) 941-3734 or Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com.  Our office is located in Old Town Anacortes at 809 7th St. and are proud to serve Anacortes, Skagit, Island, San Juan, Whatcom counties and beyond.

The Benefits of Staging Your Home to Sell

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As real estate brokers with home staging certifications, Old Town Anacortes-based Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC sees the firsthand effect a well-staged home can have on the mind of a home buyer. If you are thinking about selling your home, we offer complimentary home staging services that might just make you fall in love with your home all over again!

Home Sellers Are Biased – Staging one’s own home is like asking them to be objective about their children. Unless you have truly hated your home since you bought it, it will be difficult for you to let go of your own decorating style and the emotions that have been cultivated since living there.

You Will Learn! – Have you ever looked at a home magazine or watched the DIY Network only to fantasize about being able to decorate the way they do? Now you can learn! Stagers work with you to properly display items in your home to bring out the best features possible. It might give you the chance to learn how you want to decorate your next space!

First Impressions Must Be the Best – Buyers will only get one first impression of your home – make it the best! You get a good feeling when you walk into a home that has been properly staged.  It isn’t fake, it isn’t dirty, and it allows potential buyers to develop their own sense of comfort and connection to the home.

Look Better than Other Homes – When a home isn’t properly staged, buyers are only driven further from your listing and closer to your competition. Keep your buyers connected with your property!

Appears Move-In Ready – Proper, neutral home décor allows buyers to visualize living there. They will imagine their own possessions in each room, and how their family will fit into the space. It will also lessen the impact of any maintenance issues that may arise during inspection, as they are already pleased with the home’s overall aesthetics.

Looks Well-Maintained – Again, issues have the potential to arise in almost any inspection, and a home that appears to be well-maintained from the outside will help the buyer feel more comfortable with any “internal” work that may need to be done, rather than focusing on changing things like countertops or radical paint jobs.

Looks Better in Photos – These days, homes are typically first viewed on the internet. Well-done staging allows for better quality photos and allows a potential buyer to fall in love with the home before viewing it in person.

It’s Free! – Jean Grosbeck & Assoc. LLC offers free staging services from a certified professional to all who sign with us. Our staging professional is experienced in making a home comfortable for anyone who views it.

For more helpful staging tips or information on selling your home, reach out to Team Groesbeck today and be sure to check out our page that explains the staging process.

5 Ways to Prepare Your Home to Be Listed for Sale

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Will your home soon be listed for sale?  Here are some tips to consider to make your home look its best!

Repaint the Trim
Fresh baseboards, crown molding and trim around doorways and windows make a big impact. Focus on the interior of the home first and if you are able, do the same for the exterior. Adding a new layer of paint to the trim can bring instant life back into your home, making the space feel fresher and cleaner.

Hire a Professional House Cleaner
A professional can undertake a thorough top-to-bottom scrub down, which includes cleaning the grout, polishing the faucets, wiping down the ceiling fan blades, and dislodging every crumb out of that irritating gap between your stove and counter top and beyond. A clean house makes a difference in the eyes of a buyer and can lead to the “wow” factor that may help put your home sale over the top.

Steam Clean the Carpets
When was the last time you had the carpets in your home professionally steamed-cleaned? This type of cleaning can lift the smallest stains and imperfections out of your carpets. Your carpets will look as new as possible, at a substantially cheaper price than the cost of a replacement.

Clear the Clutter
Clutter overwhelms a space, distracting from your home’s more beautiful elements. Many people won’t notice the high ceilings or large windows if their attention is refocused on a pile of old magazines, heaps of unopened mail, and random wires, cables, tools, board games and DVDs scattered about everywhere. Clutter also makes a space feel smaller. Your walk-in closet might be amply sized, but if it’s overstuffed with old clothes, jackets, boxes, suitcases and bags, your prospective buyers will think the closet space is insufficient. It doesn’t matter that the closet is actually bigger than the buyer’s first apartment; all they’ll see is the mess. You don’t want to showcase an empty closet – this looks uninviting – but you don’t want one that’s bursting at the seams, either.

Stage the Home
Professional investors often hire ‘staging companies’ to fill a home with furniture in order to showcase its potential.  If you’re still living in your current home, you’re already one step ahead of the game: your space is already furnished. Now you just need to up the ante by a notch, so that your home looks magazine-worthy.
Do you know that Jean Groesbeck & Assoc. LLC offers its clients staging services? We know the impact a staged home has on a potential buyer and we believe in staging your home to sell!

Based in Anacortes, Team Groesbeck can be reached daily for all of your real estate needs at (360) 941-3734 or Jean@JeanGreoesbeck.com.

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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!

Planning Your Garden for Spring

PLANNING YOUR GARDEN

 

Enhancing curb appeal includes enhancing your garden! Time for fresh flower scents, new plants, and working outside. Many bulbs have already begun to bloom, however the good news is that you can buy flowers and plants that have already bloomed and your yard will instantly look great! This is also the time to consider any fall bulbs or crops you want to have around once the summer is over.

Our Favorite Ways to Begin Planning Your Garden

Make a Sketch of Your Yard
You don’t necessarily need accurate measurements to do this (although if you want a to-scale sketch of your yard, feel free!), but it is necessary to visualize where you want everything to go. Drawing it out will help you determine how your yard will look once everything is in place and allow you to better allocate your money.

Plant Trees First
As trees typically take up more space in yards and require a little more work, it is best to get them done first and plant smaller items around them.

Year-Round Plants and Upgrades
Some plants such as shrubs and bushes that don’t “bloom” can provide aesthetic appeal to your yard year-round. If you plan to implement any of these, plant them when you do your trees to again get bigger items out of the way. This is also the time to work on any yard enhancements such as new pathways or retaining walls that will add dimension to the yard as a whole.

Perennials, Bulbs, and Annuals
This is the time to have fun and add color to your yard! Many spring bulbs are available for purchase and already in full-bloom by May first. Determine what feel you want your yard to have and browse a couple of nurseries and garden centers. If you are unsure of how to care for the plants you are looking for, the individuals that work there will likely be happy to share their knowledge.

Having a well-planned garden always attracts the eyes of passersby, especially those eyes that are interested in purchasing your home.

Contact us for more tips on how to enhance your home and garden for the market! If you are looking to buy in Anacortes, WA or anywhere in Skagit County, we can be your guide in finding a great home in a beautiful part of the Pacific Northwest.

The Benefits of Staging a Home For Sale

staging
As real estate brokers with home staging certifications, we see firsthand the effect a well-staged home can have on the mind of a home buyer. If you are thinking about selling your home, we offer complimentary home staging services that might just make you fall in love with your home all over again!

Home Sellers Are Biased
• Staging one’s own home is like asking them to be objective about their children. Unless you have truly hated your home since you bought it, it will be difficult for you to let go of your own decorating style and the emotions that have been cultivated since living there.

You Will Learn!
• Have you ever looked at a home magazine or watched the DIY Network only to fantasize about being able to decorate the way they do? Now you can learn! Stagers work with you to properly display items in your home to bring out the best features possible. It might give you the chance to learn how you want to decorate your next space!

First Impressions Must Be the Best
• Buyers will only get one first impression of your home- make it the best! You get a good feeling when you walk into a home that has been properly staged. It isn’t fake, it isn’t dirty, and it allows potential buyers to develop their own sense of comfort and connection to the home.

Look Better than Other Homes
• When a home isn’t properly staged, buyers are only driven further from your listing and closer to your competition. Keep your buyers connected with your property!

Appears Move-In Ready
• Proper, neutral home décor allows buyers to visualize living there. They will imagine their own possessions in each room, and how their family will fit into the space. It will also lessen the impact of any maintenance issues that may arise during inspection, as they are already pleased with the home’s overall aesthetics.

Looks Well-Maintained
• Again, issues have the potential to arise in almost any inspection, and a home that appears to be well-maintained from the outside will help the buyer feel more comfortable with any “internal” work that may need to be done, rather than focusing on changing things like countertops or radical paint jobs.

Looks Better in Photos
• These days, homes are typically first viewed on the internet. Well-done staging allows for better quality photos and allows a potential buyer to fall in love with the home before viewing it in person.

It’s Free!
• We offer free staging services from a certified professional to all who sign with us. Our staging professional is experienced in making a home comfortable for anyone who views it.

For more helpful staging tips or information on selling your home, reach out to us today and be sure to check out our page that explains the staging process.

Does Landscaping Add Value to Your Home?

Photo courtesy of BigSkyLandscaping.com

Photo courtesy of BigSkyLandscaping.com

Whether you live in a condominium or a single-family house, landscaping can certainly make your home easier to sell. But will attractive landscaping add value to your home?

Potted plants, freshly edged green lawn, and weed-free garden areas will make your home more attractive and appealing. The more appealing the home or condo, the more marketable it is and the faster it will sell.

Well-manicured landscaping helps frame other elements of curb appeal. It is considered a value-added feature because it helps create a positive first impression. While landscaping can add some value, you can almost always get a return on your investment in decks and patios. As decks have become more desirable, their resale value has continued to increase.

In the yard and garden of your single-family home or in pots on your condo deck or patio, use plants, trees, and other landscaping elements freely to make your home more appealing and help you sell it more quickly when the time is right.

So the answer is YES, landscaping adds value to your home or condo. It will definitely be the “wow” factor that buyers look for when buying a home. Remember, the more appealing the outside of a home is, the more desirable it will be for buyers.

If you are thinking of selling this spring or have any questions on how to get your home ready before selling, please call, text or email us. We are always happy to help.

809 7th St. Anacortes, WA 98221

809 7th St.
Anacortes, WA 98221

Ready to repaint your walls?

Painting the walls of your home can be an exciting way to make your home feel like new, but it can also be quite intimidating and overwhelming.  With so many options out there, how will you ever decide which color or colors to use?

Find inspiration

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Use the items already in your home.  Look at the art on your walls, or the colors in your ornamental rug, or even your furniture.  Or be inspired by nature.  Do you love the beach, the desert, the rainforests or the beauty of Anacortes, WA… ?  Try perusing websites like Pinterest for interior design ideas.  As you think of what images inspire you, take into consideration their colors, shades, and tints.

Get to know your dislikes

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A paint store has a very overwhelming selection of colors.  Start whittling down the options by eliminating the colors you don’t like.  Always hated a specific color?  There are so many shades and tints of each color, that by eliminating the ones you dislike, you’ve just done yourself a favor and gotten rid of tons of options!

Test your favorites

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Don’t buy a whole gallon of paint, even if you’re 100% certain that you love it.  Get samples to bring home, and paint some large swatches on the walls in question.  Then, make sure you see those colors during all levels of light – early morning, afternoon sun, evening thunderstorm, cozy winter night…  What looks like a lovely pale blue might have an unattractive purple tint at night.

When in doubt, go with the flow

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Sometimes there’s too much pressure to be creative.  If you feel this way, go with what other people are doing.  This is another time when using the internet for popular interior design styles could be useful.  For example, gray is very popular today.  And you don’t have to feel like a total sheep, because there are tons of shades and tints of gray that you can still choose from.  Popular designs just give you a starting point, while still allowing you to be you.

 

If you’re considering painting the walls of your home because it needs a “makeover” or maybe because you’re getting ready to sell your home this Spring, we can help guide you! There is always a full time real estate broker ready to answer your questions in our Anacortes real estate office. 

(360) 941-3734

Info@JeanGroesbeck.com

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Keep Your Home Safe

Anacortes and Skagit Valley is so safe compared to other areas of Washington it is easy to get lax about home security. However, during the Holidays there are a lot of strangers passing through town and a lot of packages at the front door of homes. Even though Anacortes is very safe, you should still all make sure that your home is secure and not invite trouble.

Lock Your Locks

You can increase your Home Security

Photo courtesy of homesecurity.net

When it comes to home security, the single most important thing that you can do is to make sure that both your windows and doors are locked. If you like to sleep with a window slightly opened, have it secured with a lock or a stick, and only leave it open an inch or two.

Light Your Lawn

What would you do if you were to hear a noise outside, but had no way to see without opening the door? The proper lighting outside your home is essential as it allows you to view your outside space from the safety of your home’s interior. Motion lights are great!

Customize Your Home Security System

If you don’t have a home security system, you might consider purchasing one. If you purchase a home that already has a system in place, change the code just as you would change the locks to any doors.

Trim Down

If you have large trees, bushes or hedges in your yard, trim them to a level that will allow you to see out the window without an obstructed view. You shouldn’t allow landscaping to block the view of the front door from the street either.

All of these home safety tips are also things that you should do when you buy a new home. We are lucky in Anacortes and Skagit County that our crime rates are very low compared to the city, but it is still a good idea to be proactive.

Haven’t purchased a home yet? Whether you are a first time home buyer or a seasoned real estate investor, we can help with your home search. Just call, text, or email. We have someone available to help you 7 days a week.

Jean Groesbeck & Associates LLC – Coldwell Banker Bain
360-941-3734 Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com

The Dos and Don’ts of Selling your Home in the Winter

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope everyone is enjoying a wonderful dinner with their loved ones tonight! I for one am excited for the upcoming holiday season in our lovely city of Anacortes. But, with all that excitement comes the stress of preparing one’s house—especially, if you’re considering putting your home on the market during this hectic time of year. One of the most common questions I receive is when to buy a home or when to sell a home.

Earlier this week we discussed the perks of buying a home during the winter season but did you know this is also a great time to put your house on the market? Home buyers during this season have a greater sense of urgency to find a home than home buyers during the spring and summer. Did you know that the average home seller that sells their home in December through March ends up receiving more than their asking price? So what are you waiting for?

Here are the dos and don’ts of selling a home during the holiday season.

A great example on how to decorate your home for the season while keeping it simple.

1. Staging: Who doesn’t love to decorate their house for the holidays? Unfortunately, it’s easy to get carried away with the decorations and hide some of the best features of your home. You want to accent what you have to offer and not overwhelm those who are coming to view the house. Keep decorating to a minimum but don’t be afraid to use some of those decorations to emphasize the best features. Having an inviting and cozy home is a great way to help a potential home buyer view what they could be purchasing.

2. Pricing: This is very important when listing your home. During the wintertime, home prices play a huge roll 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 for too long. You also don’t want to price it too low as you may lose out on potential gain, although it might trigger multiple offers and allow you select from several offers to purchase your home . 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.

3. Schedule a home tune-up: Bring in 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.

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

4. Curb Appeal: Don’t ignore your yard! Just because the grass and flowers may be turning brown doesn’t mean that you can’t make your yard look good! Some of my favorite winter garden upgrades are pulling out the dead plants, planting winter pansies and placing mulch in the flower beds. While nothing will be growing, it adds a little bit of a natural color and can give your yard a clean look. Give your trees a nice trim, especially those evergreens.

5. Maximize your lighting: Everyone in Washington knows it gets dark early during winter days. It’s very important to 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.

This living room combines natural light with cozy ceiling lights.

I hope these tips inspire you to think about listing your home in the winter months!  If you’re considering buying a home in Skagit County, Oak Harbor, or Anacortes, WA, 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, talk to your realtor: Jean Groesbeck today!

Jean Groesbeck:  Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com or  360-941-3734.