Welcome to my Blog where you will find a mix of information from my experiences as a Real Estate agent, helpful tips and information about buying and selling homes, and how my education and experiences make me the best real estate agent for you!  

Feb 19, 2014

What's Your Style?

Posted by: Amy Smith

A guide to America’s Most common Home Styles

 

          Styles of houses vary across the country.  From the New England Cape Cod to the Victorians of San Francisco, the choices are almost endless.  Knowing which style you prefer is one of the basic elements in your hunt for the perfect home.

          Following is a quick guide to help you recognize and use the professional terms for many of the most prevalent house styles:

  • Ranch:  these long, low houses rank among the most popular types in the country.  The ranch, which developed from early homes in the West and Southwest, is one-story with a low pitched room.  The raised ranch, which is also common is the U.S.. has two levels, each accessible from the home’s entry foyer, which features staircases to both upper and lower levels.
  • Cape Cod:  this compact story-and-a-half house is small and symmetrical with a central entrance and a step, gable roof.  Brick, wood or aluminum siding are the materials most commonly seen.
  • Georgian:  Popular in New England, the Georgian has a very formal appearance with tow or three stories and classic lines. Usually built of red brick, the rectangular house has thin columns alongside the entry, and multi-paned windows above the door and throughout the house.  Two large chimneys rise high above the roof at each end.
  • Tudor:   modeled after the English country cottage.  Tudor styling features trademark dark-wood timbering set against light-colored stucco that highlights the top half of the house and frames the numerous windows.  The bottom half of the house is often made of brick.
  • Queen Anne/Victorian:  Developed from styles originated in Great Britain, these homes are usually two-story frame with large rooms, high ceilings and porches along the front and sometimes sides of the house.  Peaked roofs and ornamental wood trim, many times referred to as “gingerbread,” decorate these elaborate homes.
  • Pueblo/Santa Fe Style– Popular in the Southwest, these homes are either frame or adobe brick with a stucco exterior.  The flat rood has protruding, rounded beams called vigas.  One or two story, the homes feature covered/enclosed patios and an abundance of tile.
  • Dutch Colonial– the Dutch Colonial has two or tow-and-one-half stories covered by a gambrel roof (having two lopes on each side, with the lower slope steeper than the upper, flatter slope) and eaves that flare outward.  This style is traditionally make of brick or shingles.
  • New England Colonial– This two-and-one-half story early American style is box like with a gable roof.  The traditional material is narrow clapboard siding and a shingle roof.  The small-pane, double-hung windows usually have working wood shutters.
  • Southern Colonial–this large, two-to-three-story frame house is world famous for its large front columns and wide porches.
  • Split-levels: Split-level houses have one living level about half a floor above the other living level.  When this type of home is built on three different levels, it is called a tri-level.

 

These are just a few of the many styles of homes available across the country – some are more prominent in different areas than others.  Knowing home style terms will help you zero in on the type of house that will fill your needs and suit your taste.

About Century 21 Real Estate LLC
Century 21 Real Estate LLC (century21.com) is the franchisor of the world's largest residential real estate sales organization, providing comprehensive training and marketing support for the CENTURY 21 System. The System is comprised of approximately 7,100 independently owned and operated franchised broker offices in 74 countries and territories worldwide with more than 100,000 sales professionals. Century 21 Real Estate LLC is a subsidiary of Realogy Holdings Corp. (NYSE: RLGY), a global leader in real estate franchising and provider of real estate brokerage, relocation and settlement services.

©2013 Century 21 Real Estate LLC. All Rights Reserved CENTURY 21® and the CENTURY 21 Logo are Registered Trademarks Owned By Century 21 Real Estate LLC. Century 21 Real Estate LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each CENTURY 21 Office is Independently Owned and Operated.

Feb 7, 2014

Selling Your Home in the Winter

Posted by: Amy Smith

In many parts of the country, selling a home during the winter months can be a challenge.  Dreary, cold weather and the end-of-the-year holidays can keep buyers away and heighten fears of your home staying on the market longer than expected.

However, there are a few things you can do to enhance “curb appeal.”  And when that happens, buyers will take notice.

For example, if your home has been on the market for more than six months, its probably time to change the sales approach.  There are several factors that could be reviewed with your real estate agent to determine improvements that can be made.  Ask for a reassessment of the sales price; it may be too high for the current market.  Also, ask the agent for a new or updated marketing plan and ask for a specific explanation of each activity.  Marketing your home goes beyond a few ads in the newspaper and a listing on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS); a good agent will do more to get your home sold.

If your current agent doesn’t respond to your satisfaction, you should contact the real estate broker (the owner of the office) and ask for a different sales agent – or, if you’re no longer under any contractual obligation to the firm, it might be time to change real estate offices entirely.

When setting the asking price through a comparative marketing analysis, compare similar homes sold in the winter months.  Many owners set their asking price too high because of comparisons with sales prices during peak seasons.  Always try to compare like properties sold at the same time of year.

Once you’ve settled on an asking price, its time to spruce up the interior and exterior of your home.  Many real estate agents recommend opening as many curtains as possible to add light and color to rooms.  Also, it’s suggested that you keep spring and summer pictures of your home out on tables and in clear view.  Photos of your front yard flowers or the backyard shade tree in full summer bloom can help swing many buyers in favor of a purchase.

Staying on top of winter maintenance and chores is another sure-fire way of adding value to your home.  A neatly shoveled driveway and cleared walkway can add a nice touch.  Make sure the furnace is in good working condition and that the room temperature is kept at a comfortable level.  Also, check to see that the basement is dry and sealed from any drafts.

Take yourself on a tour of your home.  Start in the basement and work your way through the house.  More than likely you’ll see many previously undiscovered cluttered spaces and needed repairs that can turn off potential buyers.

Don’t overload your home with holiday decorations, either.  The buyer should have a chance to see your home in its everyday condition.

 

 

 

 

 

About Century 21 Real Estate LLC
Century 21 Real Estate LLC (century21.com) is the franchisor of the world's largest residential real estate sales organization, providing comprehensive training and marketing support for the CENTURY 21 System. The System is comprised of approximately 7,100 independently owned and operated franchised broker offices in 74 countries and territories worldwide with more than 100,000 sales professionals. Century 21 Real Estate LLC is a subsidiary of Realogy Holdings Corp. (NYSE: RLGY), a global leader in real estate franchising and provider of real estate brokerage, relocation and settlement services.

©2013 Century 21 Real Estate LLC. All Rights Reserved CENTURY 21® and the CENTURY 21 Logo are Registered Trademarks Owned By Century 21 Real Estate LLC. Century 21 Real Estate LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each CENTURY 21 Office is Independently Owned and Operated.