Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Why Pay 6-7% Commission?

Atlanta Real Estate.  I received a call yesterday from a homeowner stating that he paid his LISTing agent $24,000 to LIST the property and the property sold in 1 day.  He asked me why he had to pay so much for so little work?  After all $24,000 is a cost of a new car, college tuition or even retirement.

There is no reason to hire a traditional real estate company to LIST your property in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).  Agents have scared homeowners over the years to believe SELLing a home is rocket science.

Today thanks to the Internet.  Homeowners have alternative choices on how they can LIST their properties in the MLS.  One of the choices they have is to LIST their homes with for a Flat Fee Listing Broker. The homeowner pay the Listing Broker a nominal marketing fee to LIST their property in the MLS.

In many cases the homeowner also reserve the right to continue to show and sell their properties themselves.  If the owner sell their property to a buyer not working with an agent they SAVE the buyer's agent's commission and pay NO COMMISSION at closing.

By using the Flat Fee Listing Broker the homeowner pays only 1 agent; the agent that brings them a qualified buyer a commission at closing usually around 3%.  The homeowner SAVES the LISTing commission that would have gone to the Listing agent at closing to LIST the property in the MLS.

Think about the terms used.  LISTing agents LIST the home.  The SELLing agent SELLS the home.  Homeowners pay only 1 agent that actually brings the buyer and not two agents.

In today's real estate market it really does not make sense to LIST your property with a traditional agent, unless you can't use $24,000 toward your retirement, your kids tuition or even to purchase a new car.

For more information go to: GAforSaleByOwner.com

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Get Your Home Ready for Winter

Fall and Winter is for many homeowners the most enjoyable of all the seasons. As the temperatures steadily decline and days get shorter, the cold winter days get closer and closer.

Now is the time to prep your home - both indoor and outdoor - for the long winter months.

         Outdoor Maintenance Tips
  1. Clear debris out of you window wells, gutters, downspouts, and storm drains. This will allow the water to properly drain, minimizing standing water and stalling the freeze and thaw expansion process that often occurs during colder months.
  2. Make sure the weather stripping on your windows and doors fit and is in good condition.
  3. Clean your windows. Sparkling clean windows let in lots of sunlight that will help chase away winter's doldrums.
  4. Look for broken or cracked glass and damaged screens or storm windows. Check for loose putty around glass panes.
  5. Remove garden hoses from spouts, drain and store for the winter.
  6. Check painted surfaces for water damage or mildew.
  7. Insulate outdoor faucets, pipes in unheated garages, and pipes in crawl spaces with materials such as rags or newspapers.
  8. Keep rodents out. In the winter months, all kinds of critters will be looking for a cozy spot. They don't need a lot of space to get into or under your home. Make sure all exterior vents are screened and that there are no gaps underneath garage doors. 
  9. Fall is also the time to remove window screens and store in a safe place such as your basement or garage. Install storm windows to insure proper heating efficiency.

    Indoor Maintenance Tips
  10. Get your heating system checked by a professional.
  11. Replace your furnace filter.
  12. Clean out any dust that has accumulated in vents to reduce exposure to indoor pollutants and cut down on winter colds.
  13. Make sure you have proper insulation in both your attic and basement. While checking your insulation, if you see any dark, dirty spots, it may indicate you have air leaks coming into your home.
  14. Test all smoke alarms and clean dust from the covers. Replace batteries as necessary.
  15. Test all ground-fault circuit interrupters, especially after electrical storms.
  16. Check your home around windows and doors for air leaks. An easy way to check for leaks is to move a lighter around the window or door frame and see if the flame moves with a breeze. If you find a leak, you can caulk it or you may have to replace the wood frame. Repairing these leaks can save you money on your energy bill during the cold months.
  17. Don't ignore your hose bibs and learn the location of your pipes as well as how to shut off the water. If your pipes end up freezing, you'll have a better chance of preventing a burst if you can quickly shut water off.
  18. Clean and reverse ceiling fans. Reset fans for the winter routine by giving fan blades a thorough dusting, and then switch them to a clockwise spin in order to push warm air downward from the ceiling.
For more information go to: GAforSaleByOwner.com