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Jeff Discher's Blog

By Jeff Discher | Agent in San Diego, CA
  • Secrets of home staging to get TOP DOLLAR!!

    Posted Under: General Area in San Diego County, Home Selling in San Diego County, How To... in San Diego County  |  July 30, 2013 3:42 PM  |  501 views  |  No comments

    Like most of us, you probably want to get the most for your home! Who doesn't? If there were simple steps you could take in your home to add a few more bucks to your bottom line, wouldn't you?

    In my 10 years of real estate experience and after listening to both sellers and buyers, I have came up with some of the easiest and best ways to self stage your home to impress buyers and get the most for your home.

    Herea re a few secrets:

    1. Keep it clean. Sounds easy but when your in the middle of moving or just haven't done that spring cleaning, it becomes a big deal. Keep it clean from top to bottom. Keep all the windows clean and ledges dusted, clean carpets and get rid of all smells. And PLEASE make sure your bathrooms are clean enough to eat off the floor.

    2. Remove clutter. One of the comments I hear the most from buyers is how much "stuff" sellers have. It's a distraction away from the better qualities yoru home may have. Take down all personal items including family pictures and trinkets. Buyers want to picture themselves living in the home, not living in someone elses. You don't have to throw your things away, just hide them for now.

    3. Nuetral colors. Your favorite colors may not be someone elses favorite colors. Paint is reletively cheap when it comes to selling a home so if you can, try to paint the walla a nuetral warm color. Allow the potential buyer to imagine their own colors on the walls. Plat it safe and it will pay off!

    4. Neccessary repairs. Try to make any repairs that may be seen through a walk through or come up in an inspection during escrow. Most repairs can be done quickly and fairly inexspensively. You don't want to enter escrow and have the buyer realize the house has not been taken care of and cancel. At a minimum they will pick away at the offered price and ask for reductions and credits for repairs. It's typically cheaper for you to do them yourself or hire a handyman.

    5. Boutique style bedrooms. Make the bedrooms feel comfortable and fresh. Make sure your bedding is new or always clean. Keep windows open and make sure all your shoes and clothes are put away. Google best hotel suites for ideas.

    6. Minimal furniture. Again, try to keep furniture to a minimum. Larger pieces make a room feel small and pieces too small make a room appear cluttered. Think simple!

    7. Awesome lighting. Make sure all light bulbs are in working condition and lights for that matter. If you will be home during the showing or right before, turn on every light in the house. Even if it's day light.  Good lighting cannot be spared!

    So there you have it! Sounds simple, but most people ignore these quick fixes that could potentially net them thousands of dollars. Make sure you go throught his check list prior to listing your home for sale.

    If you are considerng selling your home, please contact me for a free consultaion. I would be more than happy to help you get TOP DOLLAR! Jeff Discher, Realtor, 619-887-2800

  • Tips To Get My Offer Accepted!

    Posted Under: Home Buying in San Diego, How To... in San Diego  |  May 21, 2013 12:53 PM  |  420 views  |  3 comments

    I can remember 2004, 2005, and 2006 when there were multiple offers and I would be sitting in front of my computer waiting for a property to come on the market so that Icould send it to my clients. Everything was selling for over asking and it was out of control. Well guess what, those days are back! At least here in San Diego!

    As a buyer in this type of market, there are some tips to increase your chances of getting your offer accepted. You have to remember, we are in an extreme sellers market so the sellers have the upper hand and it’s best to think like a seller when submitting an offer. For most sellers, the bottom line in terms of profit is the #1 thing they are concerned with. There are still some sellers that will accept on emotion, however they are becoming rare.

    Let’s look at a few ways to face lift your offer.

    1. Put your best foot forward. There is no time for games or negotiations. If you are making an offer on a home, make it your highest and cleanest offer. If you try to start low and negotiate, your offer may not even get considered. With multiple offers, seller’s typically look at the 2-3 highest and best and work with those. If you want a shot at the home, go for it!

    2. Keep it clean. Try not to ask the seller to pay for items you can live with. Save enough money to pay for your own closing costs. Evey dollar you ask the seller to pay, it taken directly away from their bottom line. If possible, don’t ask for termite clearance. You can have your own report done by a licensed termite inspector for about $50-$75. If the report comes back and the home is falling apart, you can always cancel. If the costs are doable, you can budget to have the work completed on your own dime. Sellers don’t want to have to deal with the home being tented or worked on, especially when they are living in it which is usually the case. DO NOT ask for a home warranty if you don’t have to. If you really want a home warranty, buy one yourself. They cost roughly $350-$450 which is not worth losing a deal over. Again, keep your offer as clean as possible!

    3. Shorten contingency periods. Talk to your lender and ask him to have your loan underwritten and ready to close as soon as possible. At a minimum be in a position to remove all loan and appraisal contingencies as soon as possible or have none at all. Sellers want to know if you are going to perform or back out as soon as possible so they can move on to the next buyer. IT also shows a higher level of commitment to the seller when you are willing to shorten your contingency periods. Have your physical inspection done within the first week of the offer acceptance. This way you can see the physical condition of the property and negotiate any repairs as soon as possible and remove inspection contingency. Again, work with your Realtor and coordinate so you can remove all contingencies AS SOON AS POSSIBLE!

    4. Tug at the heart strings. When the sellers are traditional sellers, meaning they are not investors looking to make as much money as possible and don’t make decisions based on emotion, it is very wise to write a cover letter and explain why you or you and your family want this home. Include a story that sellers could possibly relate too. I have seen this particular tip work wonders and be the deciding factor in getting an offer accepted.

    5. Choose an aggressive Realtor that knows the market. This can be one of the most important ones. Having a Realtor that is known in the market for getting deals done and having relationships within the area makes a huge difference. Realtors want to work with other Realtors they know are easy to work with and get deals done. Do your research on the Realtor you choose to represent you. An easy way is to Google their name and see how they come across on the Internet. Read their recommendations from past clients. Check their ratings and make sure you are comfortable!

    There you go! These are some tried and successful tips that will increase your chances of gettig your offer accepted. There is no sure proof way of getting your offer accepted, however there is some ways to better your chances! 


  • Evil Credit Cards!

    Posted Under: Home Buying in San Diego County, How To... in San Diego County, Credit Score in San Diego County  |  May 9, 2013 4:08 PM  |  417 views  |  No comments

    There are many people that think or believe that we need credit cards when we take out first steps towards being in financial freedom. By purchasing something with a credit card, we think that we are taking control of our expenses and slowly paying them off, but in reality, credit cards take more money from us, than what we actually purchase.

    There is a lot about credit cards that we do not understand, and that creditors do not explain very well, they just make us believe that we are paying off the debt slowly but surely and that we need this to have a “better” credit score. In reality, out credit score really means nothing. Its just a number that tells just how much debt we are in, and that says that we are paying our debt and we are making an income.

    There are hundreds of people that have never been in debt of any kind, and because they pay everything cash, they actually have a better and cleaner credit history than others. Credit cards are not everything that they seem to be. For one, in order to pay the interest alone on a card, most people will end up paying double the amount of actual debt that they have.

    Many people believe that they need to have some sort of debt, or need to pay off something in order to start your credit history. In reality, we begin to build our credit when we open a bank account and start putting money in it.

    Most people that pay off their debt, end up paying double of what they owe over time. Why? Because they never actually pay off the debt, just the interest in their credit cards. In most cases, people will pay up to 20% more from what they owe on their credit cards. Worst part yet, they can use that money to save up and buy themselves a brand new car, or put that money towards a new house if they wanted to.

    The millionaires and high class entrepreneurs do not have debt. THEY HAVE MONEY! Which means that they don’t really need a credit score, because they know that they can just buy what they need on the spot.

    Think about! Do you want to spend $200 paying off something that cost $100 on a credit card?

    I don’t either!

    I believe that one of the few reasons credit cards are beneficial is for emergency uses only and to help us out when purchasing a home. If you don’t have any type of credit depth, a couple small credit cards that are paid on a regular basis and maintain small balances compared to their limits are a good idea.

    If and when you do decide to apply for a credit card, make sure you do your own research to make sure you are getting the best rates and terms possible. Interest rates can vary from 0% up to 30%. Another smart move is to research the credit card issuer and make sure they have a good track record!

  • Prep Your Home to Sell FAST!

    Posted Under: Home Selling in San Diego, How To... in San Diego, Property Q&A in San Diego  |  April 10, 2013 3:42 PM  |  360 views  |  No comments

    Are you thinking of Selling your home?

    One of the first steps you should take would be to consult with a licensed Realtor! The “know it all” when it comes to selling a home is not a good idea. You will lose more money trying to do that then by hiring an experienced Realtor to list, market and negotiate the sale of your home. It is also quiet risky when it comes to the legalities. From under-qualified buyers wasting precious time to contractual loopholes to overpricing your home, there are lots of selling pitfalls an agent can help you avoid.

    If you are trying to save a commission, research shows that homeowners that sell their homes by themselves typically sell for far less than that who are listed with a Realtor. Not only that, but trying to cross all your T’s and dot all your I’s when it comes to contracts can be tricky and end up costing you more than a 6% commission.

    Choosing an agent comes down to personal preference. Choosing an agent that you get along with is definitely important, however,an experienced agent that has your best interest at heart and can negotiate the best deal for you while continuing to be diligent and ethical is equally important. Take your time in interviewing potential agents and talk to friends and family to see if they have a referral they can recommend. Ask about marketing plans and for referrals.

    Now that you have a Realtor you are comfortable with, let’s get to preparing your home for a top dollar sale that is quick and painless!

    First off, having a pre-list inspection is always a great idea. A certified inspector would be my first choice for the best results. These inspection cost roughly $350 depending on the size of the home. An experienced Realtor can also help out with some of the obvious. Remember, all we do is sell homes so we know what to look for and also what potential buyers look for. If you end up having large repairs that need to be made, you can then make the decision to address them before listing your home or to at least get estimates for costs. Buyers will appreciate your due diligence.

    The next thing I would suggest would be to clean and organize your home for showings. When your home hits the market, you will see an influx of showings within the first coupke weeks so be prepared. If buyers see a home that is cluttered and dusty, they will not come back for a second look once youget around to cleaning it. Taking these steps will also help prepare you for the move you will be making once your home sells. A few items to be aware of are any types of odors that you will want to remove, make the place squeeky clean and declutter.

    Stage your home inside and out. Curb appeal is a home’s first impression. Trimming shrubs, pruning trees, and planting seasonal blooms can be a wonderful way to make your entryway feel more welcoming. You want homes clutter free so new potential buyers can imagine their own furnishings in the home.

    These are just a few simple pre-sale prepping suggestions. Be sure to ask your agent for other tips that can help you prepare for listing.

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