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22556 : Real Estate Advice

  • All9
  • Local Info0
  • Home Buying0
  • Home Selling6
  • Market Conditions1

Activity 8
Thu Jun 29, 2017
Kit Mace-LaCroix asked:
We bought what we thought was a mostly cosmetic fixer upper cottage on a 1.75 acre lot in Stafford, VA. We had a full inspection 3 years ago when we purchased the home, but since then cracks…
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Wed Oct 12, 2016
Laurie Hailey answered:
I would first take a look at other active listings that you are in direct competition with as that is what potential buyers are doing... Ask your self... Does my home show as well as the competition? Does it have the upgrades that all buyers are looking for? Does it have curb appeal? Is it maintained well? And most important, is it priced right? Our area has seen some slow periods in the fall, that is very common in Aug through Sept. It should pick up again in Oct and early Nov. Please let me know if you need help selling. ... more
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Fri Oct 18, 2013
Greg Kolandjian answered:

It all depends on how you price and market your house, the market has improved. I just recently sold a house for a client for $7000 less than what it was bought during the market hype at the end of 2005. They were expecting to get a bigger hit since the market has not fully recovered. If you would like free market analysis of your home, please call me at 540-737-8150 or you can fill out the form in my web site for free Comparative Market Analysis. ... more
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Tue Aug 4, 2009
Robert Chomentowski answered:
Yes paying a little extra every month can really save you a huge amount of interest. You would be surprised at just a few more hundred a month can allow you to pay a loan off 10+ years early. ... more
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Sun Jul 5, 2009
Matt Whitman answered:
In regards to your price question: If you have the stomach for it, consider this - Look around at the comps in your neighborhood/area. Find the lowest priced home that is comparable to yours, then price your home at 85% of this number.

Sounds crazy? Well, as a buyer in this market, I'm looking for the best deal, which means I'm looking from the bottom up. I might not even consider visiting your home if there are 2 or more homes similar to yours in the neighborhood going for 10k or more less. Would you?

The objective with this method is to get an enormous amount of buyers looking at your home and writing up offers. Then your sale becomes a high stakes ebay auction so to speak. Buyers who take the time and energy to write up these offers are more willing to negotiate and go above and far beyond asking price (at 85% of lowest comp) because there is now a sense of competition and even excitement.

The best day to sell your home has already past (that would be the first day on the market) - because that's when it is fresh and also gets populated into all the buyers emails who have signed up with other agents for that service.

A listing can become stagnant after too much time and buyers will begin to wonder "what's wrong with this house? Maybe I can low ball it"

Two other ideas to help you along:

1. Consider getting a professional inspection ($250-400 normally) - as a interested buyer , if you presented me with a recent home inspection and there were no major issues, I would be much more inclined to make you an offer. I would still get my own done by a professional of my choosing if my offer was accepted (I mean, you could have got Billy Bob your brother-in-law to do it for all I know), but at least it would give you an extra edge in this hard market.

Plus, since they are probably going to get an inspection done, and if there are issues, wouldn't you rather know now rather than 20 days from closing?

2. Offer a home warranty ($410) with the sale of your home- This covers major systems like HVAC and your major kitchen appliances (Fridge, Dishwasher, Stove) for the new owners for a year and is renewable. Who doesn't like a little free insurance ?

Good luck with the sale of your home, I wish you continued success!
... more
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Sun Jul 5, 2009
Matt Whitman answered:
I have a short version, and a long version with explaination:

1. Short version - call up agents and be upfront and say you are just looking for information, not a meeting at this point in time, and ask if they wouldn't mind giving you some free information on home sales in your particular area. If they say ok, then there you go. If they want to set an appointment, say thanks but no thanks.

You could also call the public tax records office and if you have the addresses of the homes you are interested in, they can usually mail, email or fax you the sale information.

That office contact information is:

Stafford County Commissioner of the Revenue
P.O. Box 98
Stafford, VA 22555

Office Hours: Monday - Friday, 8:00am - 4:30pm

Phone: (540) 658-4132 FAX: (540) 658-4120

2. Long version-

The most reliable source is the information from MRIS (which also links up to tax info), metropolitan regional information system. It is the system that the agents in Stafford county use to input the sold information. (MRIS goes as far south as Caroline county, and also covers DC and Maryland)

Agents pay quarterly fees to access this system as members to be able to input information for all other agents to access. MRIS then turns around and sells this information to other 3rd party sites such as, and of course which then charges the agents to become 'featured agents' ... so really agents pay to put in the information in a big pot, the owners of the big pot sell the information to other companies, who then charge the agents to get leads from their sites. So really all the information is connected to the agents in some way.

The good news is, all agents aren't sleezebags and crooks. Many, hopefully even most, are actually interested in helping people like you find the answers they need. The idea is if they help you enough for free, when it comes time to buy or sell and you need some professional help, you will consider using their service so they can make some money. Even if you don't, maybe you will remember how nice and helpful they were when you know of someone else who needs help.

A quick and informative CMA for a particular are (say 2-3 mile radius of your home) of recent sales could take a good agent as few as 5 minutes of actual work. So they really shouldn't have much problem with helping you.

I hope this was useful information

Good luck with your sell and purchase
... more
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