real estate true/false

Real Estate True/False: Only Sell Homes in Spring

The Gina Kent Group, Chandler, AZ:

There are many misconceptions about real estate.  We are going to debunk them with a little game of Real Estate True/False.

Real Estate True/False: Always Sell a Home During Springtime?

Spring is typically thought to be the best time to buy or sell: more homes go on the market during that time so people can move during the warmer summer months and not disrupt school for kids.


Now, while there are still plenty of homes sold in spring, many of the market’s new homebuyers are not married or don’t have children. As a result, their moving schedules aren’t based around school calendars. In fact, here in Arizona, the home buying and selling season is in full swing during the winter months.

Being in Phoenix, AZ, we are lucky because  our climate creates such a different market.  Our real estate market shifts quite nicely with the seasons.  So . . . if you’re looking to sell, don’t be scared to list during the winter months and after the holidays. Many sellers think buyers aren’t looking in December or January, but they are, and they are looking for a good deal! Sellers will face less competition by selling in the winter, and they’ll be meeting with serious buyers!

5 Ways to Cut Your Energy Costs: Go Green

The Gina Kent Group, Gilbert AZ:

Implementing energy-saving measures in your home will reduce your utility usage and costs. Every bit you save has a far wider impact, however. You’ll also lessen your consumption of the Earth’s natural resources and eliminate a portion of the air, water and soil pollution that occurs in the process. Start with five methods to cut your energy costs and create an impact.


1. Change Your Light Bulbs

While lighting may not be your biggest drain on electricity in the home, it accounts for up to 20 percent of your electricity bill, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. By switching from traditional incandescent light bulbs to compact florescent lights (CFLs), you can save about 75 percent of the electricity used for each and every bulb replaced. Over the bulb’s lifetime, that equals around $30 or more. That’s a significant savings when you multiply it by the number of bulbs you use. Look for CFLs displaying the Energy Star logo for best results.

Tip: Install motion sensor switches in rooms where family members often forget to turn off the lights.


2. Perform Regular HVAC Maintenance

Up to half of the energy used in your home goes to your heating and air systems, depending on where you live and the condition of your home. Short of buying a new HVAC system with a better energy rating or fueled with an alternative energy source such as a heat pump – which requires a large upfront investment – proper maintenance will help your furnace or air conditioner use less energy. Clogged air filters force the system to strain and run more, driving up energy use and leading to more frequent breakdowns and repairs. Change your filters at least every three months or sooner if needed. If it looks dirty, it’s time. Also, hire a qualified HVAC repair technician to give your system an inspection and “tune up” at least once a year to maintain efficiency and proper operation.

Tip: Install a programmable thermostat (like Nest Thermostat) to regulate home temperatures. Lower the temperature whenever you will be gone more than a few hours.


3. Seal and Insulate Your Ductwork

An efficient furnace, good insulation and thermostat temperature settings only go so far to save you money. If your HVAC air ducts leak, you could be losing 20 percent or more of your heated or cooled air – you might as well leave a window open all year round! Not to mention that leaky ductwork can circulate fumes and gasses, such as carbon monoxide. This can lead to poor indoor air quality, aggravated health problems or worse, as the Energy Star website explains. Sealing and insulating your ducts is the solution. Use mastic (a glue-like sealant) and metal-backed foil tape to seal each joint and seam. Afterward, wrap the ducts with special insulation designed for ductwork.

Tip: Insulate water pipes, especially the hot water, with pipe insulation for greater energy savings and comfort.


4. Stop Air Leaks

Where is air invading and escaping from your home? Prime problem areas include around electrical outlets and light switches, door and window frames, entry points where cables and lines of any type run into the house through the walls or floor, and surrounding wall- or window-mounted air conditioning units. Also check around gas lines or pipes, fireplaces, attic access doors or hatches, and around any vent or fan. Outside the home, use caulk to seal corners in the siding and wherever two materials meet, such as around water faucets and dryer or stove vents, chimney-to-roof joints and the foundation top. Inside, weatherstripping, caulk and expanding foam insulation can work wonders.

Tip: Don’t stop here. Take a look at your insulation and determine if it’s degraded and needs replacement or if it’s adequate to reach your area’s minimum R-values.


5. Unplug It!

Perhaps 10 percent of your energy cost goes to “energy vampires” or “ghosts” that steal your electricity. These are appliances and items that use power even when they aren’t actually on and working. Think of anything with a clock, timer, LED light or digital display. Even your phone charger keeps pumping electricity long after the phone is full if you leave it plugged in. To stop this useless drain, turn off nonessentials when you’re done with them. Consider using power strips to plug in items and simply turn off the strip when you’re finished.

Tip: Look for the Energy Star label, which indicates energy efficiency, when purchasing home appliances large and small.

Real Estate Sales Tactics: Humor

The Gina Kent Group, Gilbert, AZ:

Funny Real Estate Sales Tactics that Don’t Work:

Please, do NOT try this at home!!  As a buyer, would you purchase a home because the sellers offered you a free pizza???


5 Home Seller FAQs

The Gina Kent Group, Gilbert, AZ:

What are some Home Seller FAQs in Real Estate?

As a realtor, I’m often asked questions about the real estate industry.  I chose 5 questions that I’m most frequently asked by sellers, and I wanted to share my answers with you.

How do I increase my home value?

That completely depends on how much money you are willing to spend.  A lot of sellers typically think that the recent replacement of a roof will add value.  However, that’s viewed as more of home maintenance.  It will add value to a home, but not the way that updating a kitchen or bathroom would.  When I have a seller that is in need of quick and inexpensive update ideas, I always suggest a fresh coat of neutral paint.  If you want to improve the curb appeal (which is extremely important) you could easily plant flowers and get pots of flowers to place on patios.

Can I be home during a showing?

As an experience realtor, I have seen many things.  However, I don’t recommend that a seller be present during a showing.  It can make potential buyers feel awkward.  The buyer may feel hesitant about speaking freely to his/her realtor in front of the seller.  I’ve seen some buyers that don’t stay long during a showing because they felt uncomfortable.  As a seller you could deter a potential buyer by being present during a showing.

Should I make repairs before I List My Home?

I recommend repairing anything that is visible to the naked eye.  The more move-in-ready your home appears, the more appealing it is to potential buyers. As far as things that aren’t visible, that’s really up to the seller and how much he/she is willing to spend.  If you know that something is broken in your home, an inspector will find it.

How much is my home worth?

There are a few factors that go into the appraisal of a home:  locations, square footage, construction quality, excess land, views, water frontage, amenities (garages, number of baths, etc.), and recent sales of similar properties (comps).  Before a listing appointment, I will complete a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) to get an idea of what I think your home should be priced at.

Why isn’t my home worth what Zillow says it is?

Zillow is a computer-generated estimate of the worth of a house today, given the available data.  Their data sources may be incomplete or incorrect, and they have not been able to physically inspect a specific home’s condition.  It does not consider all the market intricacies that can determine the actual price a home will sell for.

Excellent Review of House Painters, Gilbert, AZ

The Gina Kent Group, Gilbert, AZ:

Review of House Painters, Gilbert, AZ:

A couple of weeks ago, I had a local company, George Johnston Painting, come out to paint my home.  I always worry about quality of paint jobs because my home has wood siding, and the planks needed to be sealed to prevent moisture.  After they were finished, I realized that I didn’t need to be worried at all.

I was so impressed with their quality of workmanship.  During the 2 days of work, the crew pressure washed, taped off all the windows, sealed all the planks, painted the house, mailbox, and the stucco walls in my back yard.  Their level of communication was excellent.  The crew worked efficiently, like a well oiled machine, they were fast and extremely detailed.  On top of all that, they were courteous too . . . they referred to me as ma’am when they addressed me.  Hahaha, I felt like I was in the South! 😉

Here’s a Before/During and After:

If you are in need of Interior/Exterior Painters, I highly recommend using George Johnston!
Tell them Gina Kent sent you!

Here’s their contact info:

(480) 234-0920

Licensed & Bonded
Free Estimates
No Payment Until Job is Done

Services Include:
Elastomeric Paints • Stucco Repairs • Power Washing
Wood Repairs • Garage Floor Epoxy • Pool Kool Deck
Elastomeric Roof Coatings • Drywall

Recently Sold East Valley Homes!

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