Tag Archives: decorating

How To Sell A Small House Fast

The time has come for you to upsize your living quarters. Yes, the first house you possibly bought was a little on the small size. Maybe you were single at the time and have found love. Maybe, just maybe, you have unexpectedly grown in family size that wasn’t really planned.

Whatever the reasons, your once cosy, small home is now too cosy and you need to upsize, fast! First, before you do any of that work though, you need to sell your small house!

Here’s the thing, you now think that selling a small house is going to be impossible. What you fail to recognise is, you’re no longer selling to your new, ambitious, bigger house person. You’re selling to a market that you were in not that long ago.

What you need to do is stop thinking big and start thinking smart. Want to know what tips can help you sell a small house fast? Here are some ideas to making you get that fast cash sale on your small property.

Storage, Storage, Storage
When it comes to small homes, storage is key! Whether that be smart hanging rails to clever under furniture storage solutions, what you want to do is take the clutter that can easily build up in a small house/apartment and make the best use of storage solutions that give you the sense of space and flow around the living areas.

By moving the TV off a tall unit and instead replacing with a wall bracket and then using a low storage solution, you will create more wall space and make the room look naturally bigger and brighter.

small_storage

Let the light in
Here is one big caveat of small living, lighting. You will either be blessed with lots of natural light that you can maximise by making windows bigger, or if possible, by knocking down a wall and creating lots of flowing light areas, or you may be limited on what architectural smashing may be possible.

If the later is the case, then what you want to do is to create the most amount of light points as possible. You can start with paint that is designed to reflect light particles, you can add great light fittings and features that can double up as wall features and storage solutions.

Finally, consider strip lighting in the ground or across your lower floor features. By illuminating from below as well as from the sides, rooms appear naturally large.

small

Be practical with colours
It makes sense that if you start painting things dark, you will naturally “close the room” making it look smaller and unwelcoming. A dark colour could be an accent on a wall, but we would advise that you aim to get the pale, neutral colours as your main wall colours. You will make spaces larger and brighter.

Lift your floor!
If budget wasn’t an issue, then one of the big things that you could do is a small space is to, in some way, lift your floor.

What we mean by this is to either develop a mezzanine level or raise your living areas by creating zones each with functional areas creating an open-plan layout, and there’s space beneath the raised section for storage of furniture or other possessions.

small_mezzanine

How to Sell Your House Fast: Paint Jobs

Home buyers look for some key things when they are shopping for a new property. How does the exterior of the house look on first impact? What is the condition of the kitchen? How much money needs to be invested in renovation?

What counts is the following, the more negatives that someone places in their mind about these questions, the less likely you are going to find a buyer that will pay full price or potentially 80% of the offer of the house unless there is a substantial shift in the market place.

That’s right, by having a house which lacks in buyer appeal you could lose up to 20% of your home value especially when it comes to perception of your home’s condition.

So, what are the ways around this and how can you start to see buyers giving you the value you really want for your property?

A good paint job
Well, the big question is, what are you going to get the most value from? The answer, a good paint job. Painting the interior of your home can be one of the best returns in terms of time and investment, but also, a big selling point for new buyers.

With an average spend of $1600 you could get back as much as 18% value on your property, not bad for a few days work and refreshing your living areas.

yellow kitchen

What are the best colours to paint your home?
There are a few choices you could go for here, but let’s try and keep this as accessible and “normal” as possible. By normal we mean, what would a buyer not be put off by. If you think pepto bismol pink is a shade for a living room, we want to avoid this kind of reasoning, and colour.

White
White is a standard great colour for those looking to do two things. The first, apply a quick coat, perhaps two and let the room and it’s features take over. It could be that you have bright coloured rugs, modern or deco lamps or interesting pictures that you want buyers to visualise in what could be their own new living environment. The second, and simply put, white makes rooms look bigger. Think of museums, galleries, toilets. White walls provide the illusion of grand spaces and blank canvases to work with.

Light Grey
We’ve spoken in the past about the colour grey and how it should be avoided, but this was for the dark grey category. Dark grey is not only a very personal choice, it can make the room feel drawn in. What you want to focus on is light grey’s, for reasons very similar to white with an added condition; light grey is not white. Light grey gives the room a little more of a feature feel and can feel warmer than a plain white shade.

ffhs_post

Yellows
Ah yellow. Yellow is a great colour, not only does it make buyers feel warm and welcome but it also triggers mental recalls of spring and summer months which are spent enjoying the sunshine, it elicits happiness more than any other colour in the spectrum. However, it must be noted, yellow can also put some people off. Try mixing and matching, lighter tones in the living room, study, brighter in the kitchen or bathroom.


 

kitchen main

How To Sell Your House Fast: Kitchen Remodelling

If there is one room which new buyers or investors in your property look at more than any other it is the kitchen. It is the glory room when it comes to selling a home; a great looking kitchen can psychologically impact on the value that a home will have to a potential buyer, and a bad one, even more.

But should you spend a lot of money on remodelling the heart of the home just so you can sell it and what is the complete value that a new kitchen will have to a home sale? The figures may surprise you.

We conducted a study earlier this year which highlighted different rooms for prioritising for a house sale and the kitchen was third and not first like some can think. The highest cost for a kitchen remodel, as reported in the year, 2015 was $49,000 and the average came in at $20,474!

So do you need to spend that much or are there alternatives and if you were to spend your money, what should go for? Here is our quick guide to selling your house fast with a kitchen remodelling.

Choose the right colour
One of the things that gets most outdated in a kitchen is the colour scheme. Not only is it a case of being outdated, but the wear and tear of day to day life, cooking grease and oil, and other factors (possibly young children) can make the appearance look outdated.

yellow kitchen

So a quick, inexpensive way to smarten up your living space is a fresh coat of paint. But what colour you go for can also have a massive influence. Light yellow or even very light green can have a positive effect on your overall sale value, whilst dark grey’s or eggshell not only aren’t appealing but could have a negative influence on your home value.

Cost? Around $300 for paint, $90 for materials. 2 days average time.

Countertops
Your countertops are one of the biggest cosmetic changes you can make to a kitchen, and one of the most cost effective solutions as well. And there are loads of materials that you can choose from, as well as colours, finishes and overall final look to your kitchen area.

wooden kitchen

If you have a white kitchen, you could go with dark tops, or wooden finishes. Laminate is a cost effective, highly visual material and fulfils everything you need for a kitchen remodel. Also, if you have measurements, you can get trade stores and merchants to do a lot of the cuts for you and all you need to do is just the installation.

Cost? Anywhere around $400 – $500 for material (laminate). Installation could be outsourced for $150 – $200.

New Doors
If your kitchen has sustained the test of time, the cabinets are in good working order, then you have a cost effective solution to your kitchen remodelling; new doors. In Florida/America, it’s not common to see handleless doors, but across Europe they are more common and are sure to be set as a new design feature for 2017.

new door_kitchen

If however you went for a more traditional look, then you can’t go wrong with just a simple colour, white or dark grey (which is no longer a fad) and a set of new handles. You can really transform the look and feel of a kitchen with a small knob or a chunky handle.

Cost? Budget $20-$30 a door on average $500. Fitting, one day.

With these three changes, you can radically transform your living space area into a buyers paradise. Keep the costs low and have a budget to mind. You don’t need to overspend to give you the dream kitchen that someone may want to have.

What would be your tips for a kitchen remodel? We’d love to know.

5 Best Homes From Christmas Movies

With Thanksgiving just gone, and Christmas not too far away, the time to sit down, enjoy the festive break and spend time with loved ones will be on everyone’s mind. But there will come a time in the holiday season when you will want to sit down and just watch a good old family Christmas movie. Christmas movies have a few things in common. There is snow, there are arguments and there are beautifully decorated homes that we all wish we could own!

So, here are our, 5 Best Houses from Christmas Movies, enjoy!

1) The McAllister’s – Home Alone
They left their child whilst they went on holiday to Paris. The first question that springs to mind is, what did the dad for a living. (Apparently, he was a successful businessman) But this beautiful home, the exterior shots filmed in Chicago, is quite a delight. Floor plans on the internet point to it having, 3 floors, 4 bedrooms, 2 en-suites, 5 bathrooms, a spacious lounge and downstairs area and a basement.

Home Alone_Movie

2) Susan’s House – Miracle on 34th Street
The 1994 remake of Miracle on 34th Street introduced a new generation of children to the beautiful story of Father Christmas and hope; played by Sir Richard Attenborough this film is the spirit of Christmas in one showing. But what about the house that Susan gets at the end? Located in Lake Forest, Illinois, it has a beautiful mahogany study, gorgeous living and dining room, 6 or 7 bedrooms (we have no confirmation), a pool, a pool house with lodgings, and is surrounded by glorious countryside.

34th Street Movie

3) The Bailey’s – It’s a Wonderful Life
George and Mary Bailey are the All American couple trying to get through life, one room at a time! They had to put their honeymoon on hold, and they end up in this drafty old house which they then renovate for their future family. Aside from having to keep the evil business tycoon, Mr Potter away, George Bailey is trying to do the best he can, and on this house, George, we applaud you!

Bailey's Movies

4) The Griswolds – National Lampoon’s Family Vacation
When it comes to vacations, the Griswolds were the family of a generation that grew to love films and, Chevy Chase. But the lighting that was used on this beautiful home could have powered villages across the country. The set which also featured in the TV show, Bewitched, has also featured in other hit movies such as Moonlight, Pleasantville, Small Soldiers and American Beauty.

griswolds movies

5) The Stone Family – The Family Stone
A tale of bringing the family together for Christmas mixed with unresolved issues, a new girlfriend and trying to make everyone seem normal; if you’re nodding your head, so are we! But the wonderful home that was used for the film can be found in Greenwich, Connecticut it covers 3,500 acres of land and was built in 1840. It last sold for $4million according to Zillow.

Stone_movies

How To Improve Your Homes Curb Appeal

Selling your home can be one of the hardest things you can do. From picking the realtor to then playing the patience game with viewers and when you eventually get to sell your home, the paperwork required to get you over the finishing line. Of course, the most important thing in any home sale is actually selling your home. The first thing to selling any home is understanding what curb appeal is and how to get it!

What is curb appeal?
Wikipedia defines curb appeal as “the attractiveness of the exterior of a residential or commercial property, as viewed from the street. The term was extensively used in the United States during the housing boom and continues to be used as an indicator of the initial appeal of a property to prospective buyers.”

curb appeal


OK, curb appeal is how attractive your home looks to any potential buyer. But why is this important and how will it affect your home sale?

“Curb appeal is the first thing that any potential buyer will use to make a decision on your property. If it doesn’t look the part, then you will have a horrible situation where you can’t even get people to view, let alone make an offer.” Paul Russo from our Florida office continued with, “there are many different things you can take to make your home stand out and get that all important curb appeal; it’s a case of priorities and taking the road best travelled sometimes.”

5 tips for improving curb appeal

1) Focus on the photos
88% of all home searches in the US start online. If you never considered how important it was to get your property photos right, then now is the time. “Pick the right time of the day for pictures, preferably with good sunlight behind you. Don’t crowd your shot with things that may put buyers off like bikes on the lawn or dirty dishes in the sink!”

curb appeal photo

2) Be a buyer for a day
Imagine you were buying a home and take the time to spend a day looking at properties for sale. Which ones appealed to you and why? “Use this first hand experience to guide you through your own home sale. Drive past your house several times at different points of the day. What works and what doesn’t? That’s what you need to focus on.”

curb appeal buying
3) Prioritise repairs
Home repairs are a given for any seller, especially if you have lived in a property long enough to damage it. “Scuffs on doors, chipped paint and even that floorboard you’ve been meaning to repair are important but are they more important than let’s say, a new roof? Raised flags on your porch? Broken windows? Prioritise your repairs and don’t skimp on a good tradesman. Smaller things are usually accepted by buyers, but the big ticket stuff will have an impact on your home value.”


hammer_curb appeal

4) A bit of landscaping
The big thing about curb appeal is what your house looks like from the road/the curb. That said, what people will take a first, deciding look at is, your garden. “Green fingered sellers attract a lot of potential buyers because the lawn is well kept and the colours of plants and shrubs are appealing. Sometimes, the inside of the home isn’t so. But you don’t need to go overboard. Cut the lawn, mend any fence panels and for added colour, you can pick up bright plants and shrubs cheaply. Show these off in pots or planted in the soil that borders your lawn.”

curb appeal plants

5) Let there be light!

Finally one the best tips for improving curb appeal is, adding light. “Whether that is to your garden, your entrance or your home living spaces, great light gives people a welcoming feel. Outside lights illuminate darker spaces. Internal lights can make living areas more homely; and that’s important for buyers.”

lighting_outdoor

JACKSONVILLE

How To Sell Your House Fast In Jacksonville

So you are looking to sell your home in Jacksonville and you want to do it fast. Well, luckily we’re here to help. We sell homes fast across the state of Florida and the great city of Jacksonville has everything any potential buyer would love have when moving to such a big city.

When it comes to selling homes fast, we are the experts, but did you know there are things that you can do to help with your house sale. Jacksonville is a great city and investors want to know more about the great city so here is our guide to selling your home fast in Jacksonville.

1) Location, Location, Location!
Did you know that Jacksonville is the largest city in continental United States? Measuring over 840 square miles, the city is a prime spot for people looking to relocate, business, trade, international commerce and sports franchises relocating. Hosting a number of businesses in the city as well as being a great spot for domestic tourism making it an attractive location for investors looking to purchase properties in the area.

2) It’s for the foodie
Like most of the state of Florida has a great selection of restaurants and this is something that anyone selling their home in the city should really point out. Why is this important? Well aside from providing great opportunities to dine, it also means that the local economy has a great service sector and opportunities for jobs in the area; investors love this point and if you’re selling your home fast as it shows, there are opportunities for further growth in the market in the future.

3) It’s all about the water
A natural water wonderland, the city hosts some of the finest ocean to work, rest and play in. From paddleboarding in the Atlantic to the Intracoastal Waterway, marshes, and lakes—there is a way for everyone to enjoy the water in Jacksonville.

jacksonville
Whether it is the ocean or the majestic St John’s River, you have your pick of water based entertainment that could keep you happy for years to come. From dropping your fishing line at the Jacksonville Beach Fishing Pier to a guided eco-kayak tour or even surfing, Jacksonville has water in its blood.

4) Jacksonville and Sports
The headquarters to the NFL Franchise, the Jacksonville Jaguars, the PGA and spring training for the MLB, Jacksonville is a welcoming city for the sports fans; again, important for home sellers looking to sell their home fast. Tourism and Sport attractions in Jacksonville provide 28% employment opportunities as well as something for locals and visitors to actually take part in.

When you’re selling your home fast, you need to think about the kinds of things that would attract buyers and investors as well as just having a good home for them to purchase. A great location with services and attractions makes all the difference! Are you looking to sell your home fast? Then get in touch with us today!

How To Sell Your House Fast In 5 Steps

When it comes to selling your house fast, there are many avenues you can choose to go down. There is the classical realtor, the online agent, the do it yourself solutions and there are companies like us, that have a mixture of all three areas of expertise to really get out the best deal for you.

When commentators and the papers report, “it’s a buyer’s market”, you can be sure to know there will be a further commentator saying, “it’s a seller’s market” as well. The market right now is great if you are in either position. For many buyers, there are lots of bargains that can be had and for sellers, house prices are increasing so there are opportunities for both buyer and seller that would make a lot of difference.

So here are our tips to help you sell your house fast in 5 steps.

1) Know the market place
Take time to learn the market place. This means spending hours doing research, looking on real estate sites, land registry records and even talking to your neighbours and postmen about houses that have sold in the area in the last 12 to 18 months. By doing this you are effectively using your time in a constructive way to understand the real value your home has for the market place that it is in.

2) Integrate more into the community
Sounds strange. You want to sell your home, fast, but we’re telling you to get more involved in your community not less. Well, there is a good reason for this. By integrating more into the community, you will be aware of anyone else looking to sell their home, anyone looking for a new home maybe for a relative or as a second property or as point number 1 pointed out, knowing your market place. All of these elements are essential in providing the best opportunity to sell your house fast.

One of the easiest ways to integrate more into the community is by getting involved in neighbourhood watch schemes, joining social media groups and developing your presence both online and offline to get a feel for the community and show that you are also a member of it.

3) Make a video
With your mobile phone, you are now armed with a video camera; you see, you don’t even need to spend money! Take a simple yet first person video and provide commentary on the property; the little things that make it unique, what improvements there are to the property, like a new kitchen or perhaps that there has been a remodelling of the house. Whatever you think the property could bring as value to someone looking to buy, making a simple video and then posting to Facebook groups, youtube and even online realtor sites will make a lot of difference in the proactive marketing you are taking to selling your home fast.
house video camera

4) Hold an open house for neighbours
One of the keys of selling your home is, make the neighbours choose their neighbours! That’s right, as strange as that sounds. Your neighbours, as pointed out in point number 2 may know who is looking for a new home, so why not create an open house just for them. Invite them round one evening to see the property and keep a record of who visits. Those that are interested in the property can let you know on the evening or when you next see them at the market or even if you drop them an email to ask how they enjoyed the evening. Being proactive with your local community can be a big catch for selling your home fast!

5) Call in the experts, like us!
Yes, this is the sales pitch part of our business, but we really are the experts when it comes to selling your house fast in Florida. We have years of experience and we have investors waiting to expand their product portfolio. Along with a cash offer after 48 hours you could have sold your home to us in less than a week; we even take care of the legal paperwork. So why not consider property experts like http://fastfloridahousesale.com/ to sell your house fast!

INVESTMENT

5 Reasons Florida Is Perfect For Investors

So you’re looking at investing in the Florida property market and you’re wondering if it is the right location for you? You need to consider important things like, return of investment, maintenance costs, ease of access and tax laws etc.

Well, that’s a given for any major investment, like stocks or shares, purchasing vineyards or placing a hedged bet on classic cars, investments can go up or down depending on the economy and what is in fashion. Property is though a little different, and since the lows of 2011, Florida has seen some real growth and opportunity for investment potential.

Instead of going through the usual stuff you can find in a brochure or google search, why not let us help you with some more fun reasons of why Florida is perfect for your financial investment.

Food
Florida has some of the best outlets when it comes to food. With a rich history of hispanic, French and Italian immigration, as well the traditions of neighbouring states such as Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi, Florida has some rich and beautiful creations that any visitor, and resident gets to enjoy.

There is the cubano sandwich, made famous in the film, Chef; a traditional cuban street food that has found fame and much favoured taste in the state. The key lime pie is also, a world famous dessert, and only available in Florida.

cuabno sandwich
Courtesy of TasteMedia


Seafood lovers can enjoy beautiful pink shrimp, juicy crab and wonderful sea caught fish make all the difference in this wonderful state.Finally, for those that love their drinks, don’t forget, Florida is the state of the Margarita; who doesn’t love a cocktail or two by the pool?

College Football
Well, the NFL has three teams in Florida, but what about college football? It’s arguably more exciting, the rivalries more intense and the games easier to watch and see from many a sports bar, or satellite dish.

There are three main college teams in Florida; The Florida Gators, Florida State and the Miami Hurricanes. All three teams have bred their fair share of NFL champions and even film stars from the sport. Think Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, Ray Lewis, Jim Kelly and so many more. If you want to understand the game of Football, you can’t go wrong with college football, and you can’t go wrong with the college game in Florida.

Weather
With an average of 246 of sunshine, little to no snowfall and a sub tropical climate in the warmer summer months, Florida is a great location for those that want the warmer, all year summer time climate.

There’s a reason why there is the winter migration from northern states to Florida; the weather, and the local communities buzz with this. It’s not just the elderly though that migrate in the winter months. Spring break in locations like Fort Lauderdale and Miami beach are the havana of spring time.

Economy
With aeronautics, finance, e-commerce, leisure, travel and sport entertainment based economy, Florida as a state has a wealth of diversity that makes the difference to property types of investment.

A strong economy breeds consumer confidence and provides benefits in terms of infrastructure, development opportunities and general growth in the area. As the nation’s fourth largest state economy, Florida is a strong investment opportunity.

Beaches
With over 1,000 kilometers of beaches, nearly 2,000 kilometers of shoreline and a mixture of golden to beach white sands, great surf and water sport conditions, Florida really does have the spoils as a location with beaches.

Florida Beach
Beaches are of course perfect locations for parties, get togethers, weddings and investment opportunities. With nearly 40% of the economy based on leisure and tourism, Florida’s beaches are well maintained to keep the appeal and living standards high in such a wonderful part of the country.

Florida Summer House

How Long Does It Take To Sell A House In Florida?

There comes a time when everyone dreams of moving home. For some, it can be a reality that life circumstances can make less of a dream and more of a reality, for others, it could be that you want to move for quality of life or wanting to be closer to friends or family.

Whatever the reasons for wanting to sell your house, you need to consider something that you may not have thought about; how long will it take to sell my home?

As we are Florida based we wanted to analyse a few statistics that have come out recently to help answer a question we are asked a lot; how long does it take to sell a house in Florida?

According to recent economic statistics and home sellers forums; the median number of days is 65 with some areas, like Fort Lauderdale and Miami Dade being less at approximately 57 and 59 respectively.

So, what are the things that can slow down selling your house fast, and what can you do to remedy the problem?

Location; Sometimes, there is very little you could about location. You may be in an area that is difficult to sell, it could be that you’re in a popular zone. Whether that is schooling to public safety, your location will have an influence on how fast your home sells.
Price; Ever wondered about how to price your home? Too expensive and you have fewer potential buyers, too cheap, and you may be giving your house away.
Schools; As we discussed, schools are a key factor, not only for families looking to place their children in great school districts, but also for those looking to live in a quiet, well kept area which school districts tend to be.
Season; Ever considered when it is you’re selling your home? If you think about that 65 day average, start selling your home end of spring, beginning of summer to ensure that the warm, sunny season brings out the best of your home features rather than colder, darker, winter months.

Florida Summer House

What are the key factors for selling your home fast, and reducing the time needed for those looking to start a new life or plan that trip of a lifetime. Here are our tips;

Get the price right; You want to find that perfect balance between finding enough buyers that can afford your property, but not price your home too low to make sure that you aren’t underselling the total value of your house. Do some market research for your area and ask around realtors to see what price range they think would be the optimal selling price for the area.
Repair any damage; One of the things that puts buyers off the most is having to do a lot of maintenance work should they buy your house. Make sure that all essential, and visible damage to the interior or exterior is taken care of. New windows aren’t a must, but burnt carpets, broken kitchens, and loose porch tiles can certainly put off potential buyers.
De-cluttering; Give your house a good de-clutter. Take away big items and things that obstruct a home viewers experience in your house to make your home look light, bright and airy!

main cost of fixing home

How Much Will Your House Cost To Fix?

Have you ever considered the real cost of fixing your house? From the roof to the kitchen, undergoing a massive renovation package to the whole house can end up costing you 000’s and yes that may be something you never considered.

Our investigation into the cost of fixing your home has shown that there are some very expensive fixes which you can’t avoid, especially if you’re looking to sell your house fast. Let’s take a look at some of the more eye watering costs that you could expect if you are looking to sell your home in this market.

The average cost of a kitchen remodel can set you back as much as $49,000. With the average cost of a kitchen remodel at just over $20,000 you may want to think of other more cost effective solutions. Replacing doors and countertops may help with the quality of your overall look and finish but even this can set you back $10,000 with contractor figures factored into the work.

Another cost that people may not consider is the garden! Well, the saying, never judge a book by it’s cover couldn’t be further from the truth with a home. Your garden is a statement and also a security issue. Want a white picket fence to show off, or a rear garden fence line from your neighbours? Your looking at a national average of $2500 just for a replacement fence.

Our investigation into the costs of fixing a home have shown though that some things can’t be avoided. Windows for example are a great way to maximise your return on investment. An average total house replacement for a two up and two down home will set you back just over $4000, however on resale you can make as much as $6000 back, so a total profit of $2000.

Check out our infographic and see how much it would cost to fix your house today, if you were looking to sell it fast!

How Much Will Your House Cost To Fix