How to Speed Up the Home Selling Process

For sale signCalifornia is undoubtedly one of the best places in the world to grow a business, start a family or just spend plenty of time under the hot sun, on a clean sandy beach. Who wouldn’t want to move in this densely populated state and explore its countless exciting daytime and nighttime entertainment options? Nonetheless, we all have different needs. Some Californian residents may want to discover other territories, visit new states, travel abroad or relocate elsewhere. If you are one of them, you are probably struggling to find the best methods to sell your most valuable belongings at a profit as soon as possible. How do you do that, especially in a down market? Let’s find out.

  1. Boost the Curb Appeal. First impressions matter a great deal. And guess what your prospects see at a first glance: those untrimmed bushes masking your large windows, your old, worn out roof and beat up walls with a fading color representing the end result of anot-so-great painting job. Attract your buyers by differentiating yourself from your neighbors: fix or replace your roof, declutter and clean pathways and add eye-catchy details like potted flowers and wooden benches that will make your house seem even more welcoming and appealing.
  2. Price It Right. Don’t try to inflate the price of your home, thinking that this action will leave plenty of room for multiple rounds of negotiations. Not all buyers are willing to lose any time trying to lower your asking price. Therefore, by asking way too much money for your property you could put the selling on hold for an indefinite period of time without even realizing it. Set up a fair price for your Californian house based on your ZIP code, its current condition, age and amenities. When in doubt, check out online listings to find out how much money are other people asking for properties similar to the one that you’re trying to sell. Solid numbers always come in handy and facilitate a better understanding of the local real estate market.
  3. Sweeten the Deal. Don’t know how to prove that you are the perfect seller who knows more than a thing or two about the art of compromise? Throw in a few essential large appliances or let your buyers know that you are quite flexible in regards to the payment method and don’t demand a huge down-payment. Or better yet, tell prospects that you are ready and willing to take care of the closing costs. This will give them plenty of reasons to agree to sign on the dotted line and open a bottle of champagne.
  4. Get Your House in a Flawless “Move in” State. Your buyers will want to move in as soon as possible and start fresh in your California-based house. No matter what kind of people they are, they won’t dream about repainting, repairing or remodeling your property within the first few weeks. They will have to unpack and become more familiar with the new environment and all its particularities.

Bottom line: if it’s not broke, don’t fix it. Nonetheless, if an area of your house is in desperate need of repairs, implement the required changes as soon as possible to let your buyers enjoy their new life in your house without being bothered by major inconveniences, like falling roof tiles or leaky pipes.


Aug 2014

Leasing in California: How to Screen Your Potential Tenants in 3 Easy Steps

Couple have found a new homeAny landlord knows just how intimidating and costly vacancies can be. While the rental market is flourishing due to the fact that many Americans still lack the means or the motivation required to buy a place of their own, leasingan apartment or a house can be quite a challenge, especially when you don’t have a proper tenant screening strategy set in place.

Tenant Screening: Why Bother?

We get it: you’re desperately looking for someone who could pay you rent and help you make ends meet. But in these difficult economic times, you can never be too careful when it comes to letting a complete stranger inside your house. Want to profit from every single opportunity that may arise without taking any chances? Here are a few guidelines that may simplify the vetting process and allow you to attain peace of mind, knowing that your house for rent in California will be in good hands.

  1. Make a Card of Basic Questions. In most cases, you’ll conduct a first interview via phone or email. Either way, choose to prepare an on-point set of basic questions allowing you to become more familiar with your potential tenants and their goals and interests. Questions related to credit, reasons for moving, number of family members and pets, occupancy date and previous landlord references are always a good idea, simply because they provide the most valuable details that could interest you as a landlord.
  2. Meet Potential Tenants in Person. Once you complete the first step you can go ahead and schedule your first meeting in person with your potential tenants. Feel free to judge the people who are eager to rent your place based on the selection criteria that matters to you the most. Most landlords think that the tenant’s car, appearance, attitude and manners are solid indicators that provide more insight than the most detailed rental applications. For instance, a well-groomed man with a nice, clean car is more likely to make sure that your property stays shiny like a new penny.  Moreover, individuals who have the tendency to criticize your place for no apparent reason could try to lower your asking price in a shady manner and are not exactly ideal candidates on a landlord’s list.
  3. Let Them Fill the Rental Application. Encourage your potential tenants to fill out the rental application and return it as soon as possible. Stimulate them to read it once in your presence; this way, you would be able to clarity potential doubts and stay on the same page with the families interested in your Californian home. Once you receive the rental application, scan it for red flags and inconsistencies. If and when you are 100% satisfied with someone, all you need to do is to give the green light to the approval process.

After completing all these steps, set up the date for the lease signing, state your preferred payment method and instruct your applicants to carry with them a form of identification and the agreed amount of money. All in all, tenant screening is based on a winning combination of great instincts, an insight into the Californian real estate market, attention to detail and excellent people skills. You just can’t go wrong with this type of combo.

Aug 2014

 A Few Reasons San Jose Is The Right Place to Buy of Rent Property

City At NightTired of your monotonous life that leaves very little room for surprises? If so, consider exploring a wide range of novelty factors by relocating to San Jose. Known as the “Capital of Silicon Valley”, San Jose is the third-largest Californian city that encompasses numerous landmarks, exceptional accommodation options, fantastic schools and entertainment centers. Looking for a legitimate motive to start packing your bags? We give you at least 5 good reasons to call San Jose your new home.

1. The Chance to Live Your Own Version of the Californian Dream. Do you often dream about raising your kids in a safe, nurturing environment? If this is one of your most notable long-term goals, consider buying a small, elegant house in the beautiful East San Jose suburbs and build the family that you have always wanted for yourself. San Jose is considered a global city, well-known for its affluence. This is literally the land of all opportunities. You can get a high-paid job, consolidate your education, buy or rent a decent property and invest time and energy in the things that actually make you happy.

2. A Friendly Climate. San Jose has a wonderful subtropical Mediterranean climate and more than 300 days of sunshine. Due to its inland position, the area is somewhat sheltered from precipitation, so you will seldom have to worry about leaving your umbrella at home.

3. Plenty of Amazing Job Opportunities. Since the late 1990s, San Jose has witnessed a spectacular economic growth. At this point, it is home to numerous top-rated companies with more than 1,000 staff members, including eBay, Cisco Systems, Online Trading Academy and Adobe. Regardless of your professional background, as long as you stay motivated and find a way to perfect your own skills, chances are that you will find a well-paid job matching your specific competencies and level of expertise in this city.

4.  Lots of Exciting Things to Do and See. You’ll never get stuck in a dull moment while living in San Jose. There are too many memorable things to see, do and re-experience in this wonderful city. After all, what else could you expect from an urban region encompassing some of the most popular Californian landmarks, including the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Joseph, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library, The Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum and Spartan Stadium?

5. A Diverse Real Estate Market. You can’t make any solid plans until you know that you can count on a roof over your head. This is perfectly understandable. If you’re looking for a house for sale or a great rental, keep in mind that San Jose offers various categories of amazing accommodation options. For around 3,700 dollars per month you could get the keys to a nice and cozy 3-bedroom house located on Cottle Ave. Convenient single-family rentals with multiple bedrooms are in the 2,500-3,500 dollars range and can offer you the superior level of comfort that you expect to profit from.

Truth be told, it’s never easy to spot a great deal on a real estate market that you are not familiar with, especially when you are a first-time tenant or buyer. If you want profit from a convenient, simplified and exciting house hunt, count on the support provided by Apartment Hunterz to get the keys to a great place in no time.

How to Get Ready for a Home Inspection

Home InspectionA home inspection is a very important process that will inevitably influence the selling of your house. How can you prep your property for a meticulous inspection? Should you just sweep the evil under the rug and rely on every single trick in the book to mask flaws and get the best price for your place or should you actually pay attention to the drawbacks of your house and address them in a timely manner? The second alternative is the one and only valid option at hand. Basically, no house is perfect. Even when you can’t afford to ensure a pricy extreme makeover for your Californian home, you still have to take care of a few basic problems that could put your selling process on hold or make you sell at a loss. Want to pass the home inspection rapidly and stress-free? Here are a few main elements that you should focus on.

1. A Potential Mold Contamination. A whole-house inspection targets numerous systems located on your property. Nonetheless, only a few pressing issues related to key household systems can deter potential buyers and make you lose time and money. A mold contamination is one of these problems that you should take care of as soon as possible. Aside from its unpleasant odor and aesthetic consequences, mold may also lead to respiratory problems and allergies. Looking for the most effective solution to your problem? Start by tacking its real cause: identify and eliminates leaks. Make sure moisture limits in all your rooms (including your basement!) stay within acceptable limits.

2. Take a Closer Look at Roofs and Fireplaces. Assess the current condition of your roof and fireplace from an aesthetic and functional standpoint. If these two structures don’t look great, you can invest a certain amount of money to address their flaws; but you don’t have to. On the other hand, if your roof and fireplace pose considerable safety risks because of their age and poor condition, you should repair or replace them without any hesitation. Replace deteriorated shingles and make sure all bricks and mortar are sturdy and very unlikely to fall and cause a potential accident.

3. Solve Plumbing Problems. The inspector will also check water pressure inside your house by flushing the toilets and turning on faucets simultaneously. Leaks should be eliminated before the scheduled home inspection. Also, you may want to check your septic system and make sure it runs smoothly, as most home inspectors will also inspect it.

4. Keep an Eye Open for Electrical Problems. Last but not least, take the time you need to assess the current condition of your electrical system. To prevent safety risks, it is always advisable to involve a certified electrician in this process. Inspectors want to see that circuit breaker configurations as well as electrical panels are tailored to the real needs of the homes that they are examining.

All in all, attention to detail and advanced planning will enable you to pass your home inspection effortlessly and carefree and get ready to sell your house in no time.

Aug 2014

4 Things That You Should Do Before Putting Your House Up for Sale  

Idea of being a happy houseLife is a journey, not a destination. If this old saying is one of your favorite mottos, chances are that you dislike the idea of putting down roots in just one place. The sunny state of California is a great place to start a family, pursue a well-paid opportunity or turn your whole life in a never-ending vacation. But if you want to sell your Californian home, take some time off work and just travel the world, this is perfectly understandable. Many people want to live the American dream in this area, so you might be able to find the right buyer for your property in no time.

Nonetheless, several issues like leaky pipes, old flooring and huge holes in your roof could deter more than a few prospects and delay the selling process. Want to prevent this type of worst-case scenarios? Here are 4 essential things that you should do before listing your house.

  1. Plan Ahead. After you move out, will you have a roof over your head? Would you be able to cope with monthly expenses in the areas where you plan to settle down? On the other side of the coin, start thinking from the buyer’s perspective: Is your house in a great condition, or would it require extensive repairs and remodeling work? Proper planning will enable you to come up with a realistic price for your property and also invest a little bit of money in essential repairs that you can’t and shouldn’t delay.
  1. Get Estimates. Assuming that you can’t afford to replace several important amenities that influence the end value of your home, should you choose to ignore the problem and sweep it under the rug? This is not the smartest move that you could make. Savvy buyers will spot giant flaws in 1.5 seconds and force you to lower your asking price. Therefore, you should at least go to the trouble to get accurate estimates from plumbers, heating and cooling experts, painters and various other specialists (depending on the nature of your emergency). You should know the value of the price tag associated with repairs and replacements to use it as leverage during negotiations.
  1. Declutter. Now would be a good time to go through all your stuff and toss or donate the items that you haven’t used since 1976. This will represent a liberating moment marking the beginning of your new life. Store your essentials in labeled carton boxes and keep all rooms and hallways clean and decluttered, to make your property seem more spacious and perfectly organized.
  1. De-Personalize Your Home. Take your pictures off the walls. Try to hide those marks that you’ve made on the door frame to measure how tall your children are.  In short, work hard to conceal signs of your presence in the house and turn your Californian home into a neutral, positive environment that any potential buyer would feel comfortable in.
Aug 2014