The Mark Cabal Team
(682) 233-0324

Selling Your Home

How am I supposed to keep my home show ready with kids in the house?

Keeping a home in show condition is never easy especially with kiddos. Check out the article below for some helpful tips. As always, we are here to answer any questions you have when considering selling you home. 

How to Sell a House with Kids: A Guide for Stressed Parents

Selling your house while keeping your life under control is a tricky juggling act no doubt. Add kids to the mix, and you could put on your own personal three-ring circus. Make no mistake, your spunky, adorable children who have every piece of your heart don't care to learn what "show-ready" means, let alone whether the sale of your largest financial asset goes sideways.

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What do I need to do to sell my house for top dollar?

Call us today for a free no obligation market analysis on your home.

10 Best-Kept Secrets for Selling Your Home

Selling Secret #4: Take the home out of your house One of the most important things to do when selling your house is to de-personalize it. The more personal stuff in your house, the less potential buyers can imagine themselves living there. Get rid of a third of your stuff - put it in storage.

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Home not selling?

When interviewing real estate agents to re-list a home, there are several criteria sellers should take into consideration. An agent should always have the support of a company with a value and belief system in place. The agent you choose should also commit to integrity and have your personal interests in mind.

As your local economist and real estate agent, I am committed to getting your home sold by being creative, always communicating with you, and most importantly having the integrity and trust you can rely on in a dependable real estate agent.

I want to create a personalized plan for your needs that will get your home sold so that you can move into the next one. Why not work with an agent that has a value system you believe in as well as continual success? Let’s get together and discuss your options.

Give me a call so that we can schedule a time to talk.

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Deciding how to move? Here's some helpful tricks!

You're moving! Now it's time to decide how you're going to get there. Before you start filling boxes with your belongings, consider which moving options work best for you.

So you've made the decision to pack up and put down your roots in a new place. Maybe you've found a better apartment across town or a dream job across the country. Maybe you're buying your first home or retiring to a cozy cottage in the woods. Now it's time to decide how you're going to get there. Before you start filling boxes with your belongings, consider which moving options work best for you.

  • Move consultant. If the mere sight of a cardboard box leaves you feeling overwhelmed, consider hiring someone to handle the nitty-gritty of your move. These consultants are the relocation industry's answer to wedding planners and travel agents -- they can arrange for movers, pack your stuff, switch over your utilities, and transfer school and medical records. If you can swing the price tag, or if your company is ponying up for relocation costs, a consultant can make your move relatively stress-free. 

  • Moving company. A professional mover does the heavy lifting while you supervise. (For an extra fee, most companies will handle the packing, too.) Prices and reliability...

7 Tips for Staging Your Home

Make your home warm and inviting

to boost your home’s value and

speed up the sale process.

The first step to getting buyers to make an offer on your home is to impress them with its appearance so they begin to envision themselves living there. Here are seven tips for making your home look bigger, brighter, and more desirable.

1.  Start with a Clean Slate

Before you can worry about where to place furniture and which wall hanging should go where, each room in your home must be spotless. Do a thorough cleaning right down to the nitpicky details like wiping down light switch covers. Deep clean and deodorize carpets and window coverings.

2.  Stow Away Your Clutter

It’s harder for buyers to picture themselves in your home when they’re looking at your family photos, collectibles, and knickknacks. Pack up all your personal decorations. However, don’t make spaces like mantles and coffee and end tables barren. Leave three items of varying heights on each surface, suggests Barb Schwarz of Staged Homes in Concord, Pa. For example, place a lamp, a small plant, and a book on an end table.

3.  Scale Back on Your Furniture

When a room is packed with...

5 Things Your Real Estate Photographer Wishes You Knew

cell-phone-for-sale-shotDon't. Just don't. Ariel Skelley/Getty Images

Contrary to what you might have heard, a buyer’s first impression is no longer that special moment when they first pull up to check out your curb appeal. In fact, more often than not, they've already checked out your place from front to back online—and for all you know, they may have decided to cruise right by.

Most buyers spend weeks stalking perusing online listings, making Pinterest dream boards, texting must-see homes to their agent, and, well, judging.

And what is the key difference between a home deemed a HILF (home I’d like to finance) and one doomed to be mocked on social media? Photos.

Photos are the curb appeal of the digital age, and those shots have to be good. Freaking out? Don’t. Check out these pro secrets instead.

1. It doesn’t matter how many megapixels your (or your agent’s) smartphone has

To get a good photo, you need the right equipment, including a high-end camera and some full-featured editing software.

The bigger sensors of a professional-grade...

10 High Impact Landscaping Ideas For Instant Curb Appeal

When it comes to making your yard look more inviting, here are 10 high impact landscaping ideas you can try for instant curb appeal. 

Let's Explore High Impact Landscaping Ideas

Most people want to make their yards look better, but sometimes it can be difficult to find something that makes your yard stand out. With these 10 high impact landscaping ideas for instant curb appeal, you'll be able to make some changes for the better that are generally affordable and different from what everyone else is doing. In fact, most of these are quite simple and really make a dramatic difference.

A Tree Bench

If you have a tree in your front yard, it's easy to use a little bit of wood to build a tree bench. This idea is perfect for the children to sit on and read a book or enjoy a game, or you can even put a few potted plants on it to make it even more eye-catching. Best of all, this idea is not only attractive and unique; it's also functional because you can sit on it and put things on it.

High Impact Landscaping Ideas...

8 Exterior Paint Colors to Help Sell Your House

Like the hues you choose for indoors, exterior house colors should be ones you love coming home to day after day. That being said, if you're planning to put your house on the market in the near future, the wise course is to consider which exterior paint colors are going to attract the broadest range of buyers. "Neutral and traditional colors are a good bet if you are going to paint your home's exterior to get it ready to sell," says Elizabeth Mendenhall, a realtor in Columbia, Missouri, and a 2014 regional vice president of the National Association of Realtors. "You want a look that is warm and inviting. Unique colors may turn away some potential buyers." If you're painting for resale, give some thought to these eight exterior house paint colors with undeniable curb appeal.

Off-White

"The color you paint your home's exterior can make or break people's perception of your house," says Erika Woelfel, director of color marketing for Behr Paints. A trio of Behr colors created this traditional look: Hazelnut Cream (750C-2) as a base, accented by Gallery White (PPU12-12) and Dark Truffle (PPU5-19).

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Safety Tips To Remember When Listing Your Home

Home sellers spend a lot of time preparing their homes for sale. However, once the For Sale sign goes up on your property, it can be easy to forget that you may need to take additional security precautions to keep your home and belongings safe during the process. Mary Wassef, a Realtor® with Circa Real Estate in Houston, Texas offers five important tips to keep in mind.

After listing and selling homes for the past 10 years I’ve realized times they are a changing. I think it’s important for sellers to remember these key tips when getting ready to put your house on the market:

1. Strangers will be walking through your home during showings and/or open houses. Hide your valuables in a safe place. For security’s sake, remember to remove keys, credit cards, jewelry, and any other valuables from the home during the listing period or at least during showings. Also consider removing or hiding prescription drugs. Some seemingly honest people wouldn’t think twice about getting their hands on any of these items.

2. Don’t leave personal information like mail or bills out in the open where anyone can see it. Be sure to lockdown your computer, laptop, IPAD and/or any other expensive electronic devices, prior to your showings.

3. Do not show your home by yourself. If someone comes to your door claiming to be an agent and you have no scheduled appointment, ask them to call your agent to confirm an appointment. Predators come in all shapes and sizes. They can refer all inquiries to your agent.

4. You are responsible for your pets. If possible, your animals should be removed during showings....

5 Surprising Homebuyer Turnoffs

Make your home a serious contender.

Homebuyer

Selling your home requires a lot of prep work. After all, you want to impress as many potential buyers as possible. You can spend lots of time and money adding new upgrades, improving your curb appeal, or staging your home. But if you make one wrong move, it can lower your sales price, or even worse, prevent a sale at all. Make your home a serious contender and steer clear of these buyer turnoffs.

1. Dirty or cluttered homes

OK, you’ve probably heard this one before, so it’s not that surprising, but it’s a big deal. It can’t be overstated how important it is to keep your home spotless for a showing. No visible dirt or disarray, and above all, no smells. Keep buyers focused on your home, not on your messes.

2. Wallpaper

Universal truth: Homebuyers hate wallpaper. And if that wallpaper is outdated, brightly colored, or themed, it can be hard for an otherwise serious buyer to look past it. Replace wallpaper with a neutral paint to create a fresh, new canvas that buyers will be eager to make their own.

3. Hovering sellers

Don’t...

4 Steps to Staging for an Open House

Open House With Home Buyers

Give your home the "wow" factor it needs to impress potential buyers.

Holding an open house can be a great way to get your home for sale noticed -- that is, if your home is in good condition. If not, well...

"I have personally witnessed people who have walked into a house, turned around, and walked back out," says Alice T. Chan, a professional stager in San Francisco.

If you're even thinking about selling your home, chances are you've heard of "staging," or the process of preparing a home for sale via de-cluttering, depersonalizing and neutralizing, among other techniques. If you want to avoid an open house snub similar to the one described above, staging, repairing and generally prepping your home for sale is a must in today's market.

"Buyers really want turn-key these days," Chan says. "If a buyer can actually get a loan right now, they're so strapped after they purchase a property that they literally just want to move in and live. Even if they want to make upgrades later on, they want to feel like they're getting the best value possible. So give it to them."

So how do you make your home open-house ready? Depending on your home's current condition, it can be a large, overwhelming job, so you'll...

Why NOW Is The Best Time To Sell Your House

We hear it every year: "I want to wait until after the Holidays to sell my home."

WHY? Sellers! Here are 10 GREAT reasons why right NOW is the BEST time to sell!!

  • 1. There are motivated buyers in the market that must buy for tax reasons.
  • 2. During the Holiday Season there are typically less homes on the market. Less supply means less competition. Less competition means more money in your pocket.
  • 3. Many people have time off during the Holidays, which increases their availability to see homes. Buyers that buy during the Holiday Season tend to be serious buyers.
  • 4. Buying is an emotional purchase and emotions tend to run high during the Holiday Season. Strategically, having the opportunity to work off a buyer’s emotion is in your favor . . . they tend to offer a higher price when emotions are involved.
  • 5. The Holiday Season reminds many people of family. The home is the foundation of the family unit. More people become motivated to buy during the Holidays than other times of the year.
  • 6. The interest rates are incredibly low, which allows a buyer to afford more in the market. When rates are low, buyers tend to present higher purchase offers.
  • 7. Many sellers will wait and list after the first of the year, which causes a lot of new inventory in January....

5 Affordable Upgrades That Won't Overimprove Your Home

Say you're living in a starter home. You don't plan on being there forever, but you also aren't going anywhere anytime soon. You'd like to make some home improvements, but you're worried you won't get much return on your investment when you're ready to sell.

While this thinking could be accurate if you're planning to fully gut and renovate your kitchen, there are plenty of projects that will add enjoyment to your day-to-day living without overimproving your abode. "Think cosmetic changes, not huge overhauls," says Audrey Loder, showroom director at Wilkinson Supply, a luxury kitchen and bath retailer in Raleigh, NC. These five projects are inexpensive (around $5,000 or less) to implement and will provide you with enjoyment for years to come — or at least until you hang that "for sale" sign in the front yard.

Image result for kitchen countertops

1. Swap out your kitchen countertops

But don't assume granite is always the best choice. "Granite isn't as special as it once was because every kitchen has it now," advises Loder. If the countertops are the only upgrade you're planning, splurge on recycled glass (around $85 per square foot) for a true wow factor, or for a less expensive but equally stunning option, try quartz (around $60 to $75 per square foot). Stick with neutral colors like white, gray, or "greige," which will appear clean and bright and won't turn off potential buyers. If your budget allows, Loder recommends upgrading your backsplash with...

10 Ways to Boost Your Home’s Value on a $200 to $2K Budget

Maintaining and increasing your home’s value can pay off in major ways. Not only does helping your home hold value help it sell for its full amount, it can also help your home sell more quickly, help maintain your neighbor’s home values, and ensure that you’re not overpaying in property taxes.

These 10 projects are listed from least to most expensive, and may help you increase your home’s value. Best part: None of these projects cost more than $2,000, so you don’t have to break the bank to take on these projects either.

—-Low Cost: Budget under $500—-

LAWN FERTILIZING

Fertilizing your lawn may not seem as though it’s doing much for your home’s value, but a well-maintained lawn plays a major role in your home’s curb appeal. Curb appeal is how well your property looks from the road, and has a major impact on your home’s value and resale. Fertilizing a dry, brown, or otherwise patchy lawn can help boost your home’s curb appeal, and in turn its value.

Cost: The average cost of lawn fertilizing is around $.03 a square foot assuming a 6,000 square foot lawn, for a total of $180. Total costs range from $.02 a square foot for a DIY job to $.04 a square foot during peak season.

Money Saving Tips

  • If you are able to tackle this job DIY, you can save a lot of money (which you can then use to plant shrubs or trees to further increase your home’s curb appeal).
  • Tackle this job at the beginning of the season to avoid paying peak prices.

INSTALL AN ATTIC FAN

The attic is one of the most overlooked areas of the home when it comes to the impact on the rest of the home. Attics that are not properly insulated can become superheated, which...

21 Ways To Prepare Your Home For Selling

Ready to sell your home?

Don’t just list it without any advance preparation. A few minor touch-ups can go a long way towards making a favorable impression on potential buyers — and perhaps cinching a deal.

“Put your buyer’s hat on and walk thru your home like it is the first time,” says Marilou Young, an Accredited Staging Professional and an Associate Broker with Virtual Properties Realty in the metropolitan Atlanta area.

“Make notes on what you, as a buyer, would notice,” Young advises, “and then repair or replace those items.”

Some of her top recommendations include getting rid of clutter, hiding family photos, cleaning out closets, removing excess or oversized furniture, and cleaning.

These tips are among the 21 top ways to prepare your home for a sale. Let’s look at the others:

1. Clean, clean, clean. Dust on top of the fireplace mantle and fan blades, polish your appliances and faucets, and give the windows a thorough washing. If you’ve already moved out or if you’re too busy to stay on top of things, consider hiring a cleaning service to stop by every couple of weeks.

2. Pay attention to smells. “Don’t cook bacon in your home the day of a showing,” advises Rachel Weinberg, a broker at Wright Kingdom Real Estate in Boulder, Colorado. “Although it might taste great, the smell is strong and lingers for a long time. You don’t want your home to smell like a fast food restaurant!”

3. Clear out the clutter. You want buyers to focus on how awesome your space is, not how messy it looks. Banish that piles of shoes from the entry, that stack of mail from the kitchen table and anything else that detracts from your home’s gorgeous features.

4. Repaint the walls neutral colors. As much as you...

7 Kitchen Upgrades That Make Your Home Worth More

You don’t need a big budget to cook up the kitchen
of your dreams.

It’s likely you spend much of your time at home in your kitchen, cooking, entertaining friends
over a glass (or two) of wine, or talking through your day with family. But there may come a day
when you look around and notice that —gasp! — this well-loved space is starting to look a bit worn. Suddenly, your favorite gathering spot has become a place you rush guests through, and you’re
concerned that potential future buyers will be turned off by its outdated appearance — especially
if you’re in an expensive (read: high end) market, like Westport, CT.

There’s no need to shy away from kitchen upgrades, though. Make a game of it by hunting for
appliances and lighting on sale or clearance; oftentimes, they are discounted for indiscernible
scratches and the like....

Now is the time to SELL!!!

If there was ever any doubt in your mind about selling your home, wipe it away now! The following link will show you the median days on market for homes in the Arlington/Mansfield area: 

http://ntreis.stats.10kresearch.com/infoserv/s-v1/hsHc-6IK

If you move your mouse over the line, it will show you the average amount of days homes were on the market each month (an average of 5 days on the market in April!!!)

Don't hesitate! Call us and we will guide you through every step of getting your home sold (and help you find your new home)! We're all inclusive here! Now is the time to sell and you need a team that truly cares about you and the value of your home. 

(682) 233-0324 
(Look, you don't even have to go searching for our phone number Laughing)

 

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Tips to Save Energy and Add Value

When it comes to energy efficiency, look for smart features and expertise to help you save energy and money and add value to your home.

1. Begin with a Right-Sized Home.

If the home you buy is simply too large for you or your family’s needs or plans, you stand a good chance of wasting energy through excessive heating and cooling costs. If it’s too small, you’ll feel cramped and uncomfortable. It’s a big investment, so seek balance and buy it “right” from the outset. 

2. Purchase Energy Star Appliances Such as Your TV, Dishwasher, Washer and Dryer, and Microwave.

And especially the refrigerator, as it alone contributes about 10 percent of the energy use in a home. Also, unplug electronics not in use or turn off power strips to avoid phantom charges. 

3. Install Efficient Lighting Such as Compact Flourescent (CLF) or LED Bulbs in Every Fixture.

Lighting accounts for about 6 percent of an energy bill each year.

4. Get an Energy Audit and Have Tests Performed to Identify Ways of Improving Your Efficiency.

You can always upgrade your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system as well as your thermal envelope, which includes insulation, windows, and doors  and the seals or weather stripping around them. Visit energy.gov/energytips for more tips.

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