How to Shop for Washington DC Real Estate the Easy Way

Filed Under: Washington DC Real Estate    by: Steve Kayhill

washington_dc_real_estateThe real estate market of today moves quickly. And without the right support your dream property could be snatched up before you even get a chance to bid. From first time homebuyers to seasoned homeowners, everyone wants to know how to shop for Washington DC real estate the easy way. This simple, albeit fast-paced, method delivers effective results for both buyers and sellers.

Get a Washington DC Realtor On Your Side

Start with having the best players on your team. You may think that the vast selection of commission-free, for-sale-by-owner organizations make it easy to shop for real estate without a realtor. But that assumption often results in missed opportunities and disappointment. Having an experienced real estate agent is even more important in today’s rapidly changing market.

What factors will influence your choice of agent? Always opt for someone with experience in the local region. This gives them insight into the particular dynamics of each neighborhood, including the school systems, shopping, traffic and community associations. This knowledge will help guide you to the very best location for your new home.

You also need someone who understands your situation. They should speak your native language and be familiar with your unique needs. Perhaps they have worked with some of your friends or family members and come with an enthusiastic recommendation. If you are moving into the DC area from across the country ask for recommendations from local connections such as your new employer or nearby friends.

Start Looking Right Away and Continue Looking

One of the biggest mistakes that people make when shopping for Washington DC real estate is not persevering. The earlier you begin shopping, the more properties you will have a chance to view. And don’t stop browsing, viewing and shopping, even when you think that you have found the perfect home. Deals can fall through quickly and by putting the shopping process on hold you are bound to miss out on numerous opportunities.

Keep your realtor on speed dial and stay in constant contact about new listings, viewings and any changes to your current situation. Some families find that their needs and wants evolve as the shopping process continues. Perhaps what they felt was essential loses the critical label. Or something they thought was flexible becomes written in stone. All of these needs should be communicated to the real estate agent promptly, giving them the information needed to match you with ideal properties.

Be Ready to Act Quickly

Having your financing and other details of the transaction taken care of ahead of time is vital to a fast sale. Be sure to arrange any mortgage information and approvals beforehand, obtaining preapproval if possible and securing the terms desired.

If you have another property to sell, it is a good idea to have that on the market while you are shopping. This means you run the risk of selling your current home without having another to move into, but the other side of the equation is equally risky. By waiting until you have purchased a house to sell your current property, you may end up with two mortgages or lose the new home based on the conditions of the sale. Talk to your agent to decide on the best course of action, but in any case you will need to be ready to act fast when the right property comes along.

With a team of support that includes an experienced real estate agent and prearranged financing, you will be ready to shop for Washington DC real estate the easy way. The market is moving and the perfect property is out there.

Extra Services Offered By Your Washington DC Realtor

Filed Under: Washington DC Real Estate    by: Steve Kayhill

washington_dc_realtorsMany people assume that assistance in the sale or purchase of your home is all that a Washington DC realtor can offer. While that is the main thrust of their business, realtors are experienced with and willing to provide you with many other services. You may wonder why anyone undertakes a real estate transaction without their expertise and all encompassing assistance.

Honest Assessments

Property assessment is a tricky business. When your home is being appraised for the purposes of a mortgage, the value may be skewed or the assessment process fairly shallow. Likewise when insurance companies or municipalities assess for policy purposes or to come up with a tax figure the numbers may seem off. These tend to be biased viewpoints that do not always accurately show what your home is worth on the market.

Just like any other asset, your home should be valued at what it is worth. And that value is entwined with the amount that buyers are willing to pay for it. One of the only professionals who can give you an accurate, honest idea of your home’s worth is a realtor. They know the industry and the current market conditions intimately and will use that knowledge to come up with a fair figure that you can bank on, so to speak.

Home Improvement Consultations

Another helpful service offered by real estate professionals involves home improvement projects. While realtors may not have particular insight into what your family will enjoy and utilize, they can give you advice on the projects that truly add value to your home and are in demand within the market.

Many realtors will tell you that inground swimming pools may be a good investment in your family’s health and summer time recreation, but they also limit your market when it comes time to sell. On the other hand, putting your money into a new kitchen or bath is a wise investment that will pay back now and over the long term.

Your realtor is also a valuable consultant when it comes to other projects required to properly maintain your house. Roofing and siding replacement, landscaping projects and flooring upgrades are necessary when the condition of the original materials reaches a certain point. Your Washington DC realtor is an excellent source of unbiased information on when and how to go about these projects.

Mortgage and Financing Information

Talk to your real estate agent about the mortgage and financing options available to you during the sale or purchase of your home. They will have industry connections that allow you more options and greater flexibility, often resulting in substantial amounts of money saved. You could speak directly to the bank, but why not get advice and direction from a professional who works in the real estate industry daily, handling transactions and dealing with financing on a regular basis? Their insight is invaluable.

Whether for fair house appraisals, home improvement advice or direction in terms of financing, an experienced Washington DC realtor is the ideal player to have on your team. Their knowledge and expertise will help you make better decisions that will affect your family today and long into the future.

Tips for Selling Washington DC Real Estate in a Highly Competitive Market

Filed Under: Washington DC Real Estate    by: Steve Kayhill

washington_dc_real_estate_2The real estate market can be vastly different from one area of the country to the next. What sells quickly and for top value on the west coast may not move at all in the east. Likewise, properties only a few counties away from each other may encounter a completely different experience. It depends on the market conditions. Selling Washington DC real estate in today’s market can be a challenge, but with the right approach and professional assistance property owners are bound to have a better, more profitable experience.

Get a Pro On Your Side

The most important step in selling real estate is to enlist the services of a professional realtor. You may be tempted by the low cost alternatives out there and consider selling your home privately, but be warned – hidden costs and mounds of frustration await.

With the help of a licensed and experienced real estate agent you can look forward to a smoother transaction. Their knowledge, expertise and industry connections will be put to work for your property. In this highly competitive market where price is only one factor in a sale you need all of the support possible. And a professional realtor is there to offer that support.

Be Realistic

It helps to get educated before putting your Washington DC real estate on the market. This will allow you to have a better grip on the competition, choose a reasonable price point for your property and target the offering to the right market segment. A thoughtful process grounded in knowledge of the current conditions is bound to make the sale go quicker, but it will also cause less stress and anxiety for you and your family.

Remember to base the asking price of your home on the market, as opposed to focusing on your own financial situation or needs. You may be able to wait for a buyer who will suit your specific requirements, but the cost of waiting and the chances of finding that buyer need to be taken into account. You are part of the equation in this transaction, but the market and the needs of potential buyers are also equal players.

Spruce It Up

It’s very important to take care of home improvements before putting your property on the market. Older homes are up against new builds in today’s market; that means your property needs to be in stellar shape to attract buyers. Have your realtor or a local contractor inspect your home and recommend the improvements, repairs and projects that will carry the most benefit.

Although it may seem like it, investing in home improvements at this stage is not a waste of money. Buyers that appreciate and approve of these projects will reflect that gratitude in a higher bid for your home. On the other hand, leaving the repairs, replacements and smaller home renovations to the next owner will chase away many potential buyers and likely result in lower bids with more conditions.

The market is full of homes that offer many of the same features that yours does. With the help of a professional realtor, realistic expectations and a few select home improvements your Washington DC real estate will stand out in these highly competitive conditions.

What Kind of Advice Can You Expect From Your Washington DC Realtor?

Filed Under: Washington DC Real Estate    by: Steve Kayhill

washington_dc_realtors4Whether you are moving into the area or moving around it, the services of a Washington DC realtor will be indispensible during the process. As a guide, a source of information and a person to bounce ideas, opinions and problems off of, these real estate professionals will have a major impact on your home buying experience.

So what can you expect from your realtor? And what are the advantages of hiring one, as opposed to going at it alone and saving some money?

A Second Set of Eyes

As small as it may seem, the unbiased and detached viewpoint of a realtor is invaluable. This professional will take your list of must-haves and any specifications of the transaction and go to work finding properties or buyers that fit them. The information and insight that a real estate professional gives will not be colored with the emotion or biases that your family, friends or co-workers can have.

You may love a specific house, but a realtor can see things that will become a challenge after moving day. Or maybe you balk at the sight of a property and the agent can help you unearth the potential for your very own dream home. In either case they offer another set of eyes that can look at the homes (or at the potential buyers of your DC home) with care and intelligence.

An Insider’s View

Those working within the profession will see things differently. That perspective can be helpful to the overall deal. They see property as an asset and can value things based on what is going on within the Washington DC market, something that homeowners and even investors cannot do.

A realtor’s guidance through the often complicated world of real estate is helpful. When you are the seller having a pro on side will make the sale move faster and smoother. From the initial marketing of your property through to the legal procedures and closing costs, they are ready to walk with you every step of the way. Without their advice and experience you are very likely to miss something, make a wrong move or lose out on an opportunity that could have  made the sales process easier or more profitable.

On the other side, the services of real estate agent are almost priceless when buying a house in Washington DC. Do you want to know what the beltway is or which neighborhood has good schools and gourmet grocery stores? Anxious about the commute from Great Falls or the congestion in McLean? How about information on property taxes, transit or the churches in the area? Washington DC realtors have all of this information at hand and ready to share based on your own circumstances and needs. It’s personalized service that is much faster and more tailored to your family than spending a few hours on a search engine.

Finding an experienced professional to help you out with your real estate transaction is essential. Not only will it be worth the investment, but a Washington DC realtor can open up the door to many different situations you never thought possible. Find a better home, secure a sale quicker and actually enjoy this process with the advice and guidance of a professional.