William Raveis Real Estate and Home Services

Posted by Deborah Schilling on 11/23/2017

Searching for a new house that will meet your needs without breaking your budget can sometimes feel overwhelming! There are dozens of factors to consider and countless details to handle at any point in time.

Fortunately, there are strategies for getting it all done, maintaining your sanity, and being satisfied with the final outcome.

If you feel like you're getting off track (or can't even find the train station), here are a few tips for getting organized:

Create a priority list. If you haven't clarified and discussed with your spouse what you want and what's important to both of you, then there's a good chance you won't get it. You do not have to go it alone, though! A top-notch real estate agent can help you create a working list of priorities and preferences that you can use as a measuring stick when evaluating homes for sale. Better still, once you develop this list with your agent, he or she will have the information they need to efficiently locate properties that conform to your wish list and requirements. Your priority list will be based on a lot of criteria, including your desired lifestyle, the size of your family, and proximity to good schools, recreation, and shopping centers. If may also be important to you to live within a short drive to work, childcare facilities, or houses of worship. One of the best ways to organize your wants and needs is to get a copy of a homebuyers' "wish list" from your Realtor or the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Key factors to consider when developing your list may include items like architectural style, the amount of remodeling you're prepared to do, and the size of the yard. Privacy, space between neighboring houses, and distance from busy highways are also important factors to weigh.

Choose the right real estate agent: The ideal way to find a real estate agent you'll be pleased with is to get recommendations from family, friends, and trusted business associates. If someone you know well has had a favorable experience with a specific real estate agent, chances are good that your experience would be similar. Since most real estate agents value referrals, a smart agent will strive to make a positive impression on both you and the person who referred you. It's often advisable to talk with more than one real estate agent before making your final decision, though. That way you'll be in a position to compare qualities like experience, knowledge, personality, rapport, and energy level. It's vitally important that you feel comfortable with the agent you decide to work with, and that they're responsive to your questions, concerns, and requirements.

While a "wish list" and a "must have" list are essential components of a successful real estate search, the process unfolds much more smoothly when you remain open minded, flexible, and realistic.

Posted by Deborah Schilling on 11/16/2017

All house buyers have different pet peeves when it comes to evaluating homes, but there are a lot of easy fixes you can do to reduce the chances of losing a sale. Here are a few tips to keep in mind.

Squeaky doors: Lubricating squeaky hinges is one of the easiest things you can do to improve your chances of making a positive impression on prospective home buyers. A seemingly small thing like squeaky door hinges can make your house seem old, poorly maintained, and in disrepair. A squeaky door hinge is probably not going to make or break the sale of your house, but in combination with other little flaws that prospects might notice, it could have a major impact.

Weeds cropping up: Another clear signal to prospects that your property hasn't been properly maintained -- at least in their minds -- is the existence of weeds. Other than an overgrown lawn, nothing detracts from curb appeal more than weeds coming up everywhere, especially in driveway cracks, walkways, and front steps. If your home is on the market or you're considering selling it in the near future, getting rid of noticeable weeds will help improve your property's curb appeal and make a better impression on prospective buyers. If you hate the idea of handling or applying commercial weed killers, non-toxic household items like vinegar or salt have been known to nip the weed problem in the bud. Whether you use store-bought herbicides or natural remedies, make sure you don't damage any nearby plants that you want to protect. In some cases, manually pulling out weeds and carefully digging out the roots is the most risk-free approach, although it's also the most labor intensive!

Dust and cobwebs: No matter how thorough you think you've been in cleaning your house, you're probably going to miss a few spots that prospective buyers will notice. In small amounts, a little dust is not going to make or break your sale, but like squeaky door hinges, small problems add up! Areas that homeowners and house cleaners often overlook include baseboards, ceiling fans, and corners of ceilings.

Unpleasant odors: If your house smells like pets, mold, or mothballs, that sometimes can be a deal breaker. Bad odors are a major sensory turnoff that could easily sour people on the idea of making an offer on your house. Musty odors are often indicative of a larger problem, such as a damp basement, leaky pipes, water damage, or mold infestation. Eliminating odors prior to having your house shown can be as simple as doing a thorough cleaning, or as complex and expensive as hiring a mold remediation service.

The good news about preparing your home for sale is that a seasoned real estate agent can provide you with the advice, guidance, and help you need to maximize your chances for attracting offers and selling your property for its full market value.

Posted by Deborah Schilling on 11/15/2017

Stunning Contemporary Cape overlooking quiet small bog in desirable Whistleberry neighborhood. 1st floor MBR suite has cathedral ceiling, skylight and slider to heated sunspace. Cathedral ceiling skylit kitchen, formal DR,LR and magnificent 4 season 35x13 family room overlooking bog and back yard gardens. 2 BR and bath on 2nd level, plus play and office space in basement. The space is ample--need more for guests, etc? Finish the attic space over 2 car garage with skylights ready to your personal needs. Association offers deeded beach on Middle Pond, tennis courts and play area. Sited on dead end private road, this home will feel like an escape from the hustle and bustle of today's busy life. Taxes may vary by occupancy of owner.

More Info on this Property | New Listing Alerts

Posted by Deborah Schilling on 11/14/2017

Have you been waiting for an amazingly peaceful fresh waterfront retreat on Cape Cod? This quality built Cape Cod style home offers large rooms with open floor plan and most rooms have lake views. Sipping a cocktail on your deck as you take in spectacular sunset views over tranquil Hamblin's Pond is the perfect way to end a day or a hectic work week. Sited on a prestigious dead end street, and tucked well of the street on the pond, this home offers traditional craftsmanship that translates well into today's decorating sensibilities. Offering 36' fireplaced LR/DR, 1st floor MBR suite, PLUS 2 ensuite BRs on 2nd level, and a Powder room off the Den, Large eat in kitchen, there is ample space for entertaining and guests. Finished lower level with fireplaced Family room .

More Info on this Property | New Listing Alerts

Posted by Deborah Schilling on 11/9/2017

The numbers of adult children still living at home with their parents has increased. Reasons why adult children are staying at home longer vary. Some reasons why children are choosing to continue to live with their parents after they graduate from high school or college include lack of employment, not enough income to pay rent or a mortgage and student loans.

Other adult children opt to stay at home with their parents due to physical, psychological or emotional challenges. Fear of failure could also play a factor in why children stay in the nest. As a parent, there are steps that you can take to prepare your children to move out and succeed on their own.

Give your adult children the tools to own their home

Start taking actions to prepare your children for home ownership early. Also, let your children know that they have options. For example, if your children donít want to buy a house, they could rent. The important thing is that your adult children have the confidence to launch.

To teach your children to be confident, allow your children to pick out their own school clothes, starting as early as four or five years old. Listen to your children when they share opinions that differ from your own. Ask your children open-ended questions. Engage them in non-threatening debates to strengthen their ability to research facts and communicate a point of view. Also, encourage your children to make friends and to build their own circle of social and emotional support.

Teach your children how to create a budget. You could show your children how to budget to save money for a new video game or a bike. Donít give your children everything. Let them use their creativity to devise positive ways to get what they want. For example, your children could barter or exchange toys with their friends. They could also sell old video games to game stores, earning enough credits to buy that new game that they really want. They could also operate a lemonade stand, sell newspapers or mow lawns. The important thing is that your children learn early that they can figure out how to generate income and manage money.Knowing that you can generate income and manage money is not enough. Your children have to see that they can succeed at that themselves.

Introduce your children to the stock market. Some schools teach about the stock market by participating in national stock market essays. On your own, you can review nightly market reports with your children. You can also ask your children to research stocks, bonds, equities and treasuries.

Take your children apartment and house shopping. You donít have to buy or rent. What you want is to expose your children to the apartment or house shopping process.Teach your children how to negotiate housing prices and whatís involved in the house buying process. You could start doing this when your children are in the ninth grade. Let them know about closing costs and the difference between fixed and adjustable mortgages.

Make your adult children pay rent to stay at your home. Charge rent similar to what an apartment would charge for a studio apartment. This helps your adult children to learn how to budget in real time. If you notice that your adult children are having difficult launching, consider raising the rent. Also, let your adult children pay for their own cell phone, food, clothes, car note, car insurance, entertainment and utilities.

As much as you may want to, you might not be able to support your adult children for the remainder of their lives. By teaching your adult children to exercise courage and to be self-confident, you could set your adult children up for success. This can take a lot of pressure and worry off of you. It can also give your children the tools to step into careers that they are passionate about, manage their finances and rent or buy homes that support their lifestyle.

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Deborah Schilling