Archive for January 2012

Celebrate Recovery In Lexington South Carolina   Leave a comment

I get calls allot from people that I just hurt for. Today’s economy and just life in general is tough.  Some of the most common things I hear are …

Im getting a divorce and I need to list my home for sale in Lexington

I lost my Job and I need to sell my home on the Lake

Having a huge heart I feel for these poor souls and sometimes by the end of the conversations I am on my knee’s praying that these soon to be clients and friends get help and  find some of God’s grace. Almost 100% of the time I tell them about something I know will help them. It’s a program that is offered locally by First Baptist Church Of Lexington here in my wonderful Lexington Community. Its called Celebrate Recovery and a wonderful caring soul is charged with its leadership…Paul Bishop.

Ill Inject a little here about Celebrate Recovery at Lexington Baptist Church. Meetings are weekly on Tuesday nights and start with dinner being served at 6:00 PM.

Lives are changing! Over 700,000 people have gone through the Celebrate Recovery program in more than 17,000 churches worldwide. Celebrate Recovery is a program designed to help those struggling with hurts, hang-ups, and habits.

If Life has you down and you are struggling with just about anything you can Imagine then Celebrate Recovery just may be a life changing program for you. Its totally Free so what do you have to lose? For more information you can call the Contact’s below.

First Baptist Church of Lexington
415 Barr Road
Lexington, SC 29072
Office: (803) 957-0686
Fax: (803) 957-0830

Celebrate Recovery

For Sale By Owner Gilbert South Carolina   Leave a comment

For Sale By Owner Gilbert South Carolina

Ok so now you have your Gilbert SC Home up for sale and you have people wanting to see it…What now????

During the Showing :

Place your property brochures in a conspicuous place; you could place a small sign asking agents to leave their business-card.   (This is for your safety and it allows you to track who has shown the property and call them for feedback.)

 

The Presence of Pets

v     Keep pets out of the way when showing, preferably out of the house. Some buyers get annoyed or are allergic or are scared and another gets their attention diverted and can’t remember anything about your house except for your pet.

v     If at all possible don’t have too many people present during a showing since the potential buyers may feel like intruders and want to hurry through your house.  Worse still is that they’ll put you on the spot by asking you direct questions.  “Is that staying with the house?’ and force you to make a hasty decision. Your goal should be to get them to spend as much time in your home as possible so that they can “see how it could be their new home.”

v     If they have a real estate agent. Take a short walk with your children and pets.  Leave the premises to the potential buyers or, if that is not possible, let them go through the home without interruption or discussion!  If they’re on their own, walk them through your home but don’t be overly chatty. Do not have guests over during the time a showing is scheduled, if at all possible.

Everyday Checklist 

v     Remove any and all toys, bikes, tools, trash, and animal waste from your yard

v     Keep all steps clear of hazards—old newspapers, laundry, toys, pet toys, etc.

v     Wash dishes

v     Put away clothes

v     Straighten up newspapers, etc.

v     Make beds

v     Open the draperies, pull up the shades and let in the sunlight.

v     Install high wattage light bulbs so that there is a lot of light.  Turn on all lights.

v     Remove “clutter” from each room.  Remove things such as coats, shoes, clothing, pet toys, pet food, pet food bowls, trash cans, toys, child safety barriers.  (Rooms with no clutter look bigger.)

v     Dust and vacuum floors often (daily, if possible).

v     Wipe showers after each use.

v     Water and prune indoor plants

v     Wipe down the bathroom counters.  Make sure towels are hung up, and the bathroom rugs are straightened.

If you have any energy left, just relax!!  Once the clutter is in check, tidying up prior to showings should take a minimal amount of time.  And remember, the need to keep the home “show ready” is temporary. It only until you sell it 😉

 

 If you would like to have a FREE COPY of my E book on For Sale By Owner with Hundreds of tips all the necessary forms needed to sell your Gilbert South Carolina home Follow this link and contact me. Or Just give ma a call.

Chip Jefferson, Realtor ©
Exit Real Estate Consultants 
Mobile 803-360-0491
www.Chip Jefferson.com

For Sale By Owner Columbia South Carolina   1 comment

For Sale By Owner Columbia South Carolina as promised this is part 2…. How to prepare 😉

 “Understanding how to make your For Sale By owner home look great to any buyer who comes to see it!”

The way you live in a home and the way you sell a home are two very different things.  There’s a whole industry of “home stagers” out there who realize this fact.  You are able to find lots of ideas and tips on the internet and in your bookstores – the following is a basic overview of preparing your property for sale.

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Homebuyers ideally want to their new home to be a “model home.” No nicks, scuffs, or dings.  They want lots of room and things to look like new.  Your job when preparing your home for sale is to begin to give the buyer what they are looking for in terms of condition, features, benefits, and amenities.

There are some things that can’t be fixed.  Items such as a busy street, sloping lot, number of bedrooms, etc. are generally fixed and unchangeable.  But there are others that can be improved upon easily and inexpensively.  Doing the work up front will allow you to sell quicker and net more money. Getting your home ready for sale and keeping it in showing condition during the selling process is one of the most important and crucial aspects of doing this yourself.

In fact, if there is one thing that I’ve learned in my years of real estate experience – it is that most buyers have really no imagination whatsoever. If they can’t see it they can’t buy it. And those buyers that can see it expect to discount the purchase price for their ability. The condition and presentation of your home may cause it to sell or not sell.

Buyers almost always see only what is in front of them. Which means don’t ever expect a buyer to see the “potential” your home has to offer without a huge decrease in their eyes about the value of your home.

In the real estate business we call this the law of the “thousands.”  A buyer will see a old dishwasher and subtract a $1000 from their offer even though a new dishwasher may only cost $600.  New carpet may embolden them to subtract $5000 when it will cost them only $3000.

Go over the items below below and complete as many tasks as possible can cause your home to sell quicker and for more money.

De-Clutter and Clean!

Too much clutter and lack of home preparation is one of the biggest mistakes I see many “For Sale By Owners” make.

This subject probably has the most expert advice available on the Internet and in the bookstores.  Feng-shui, staging, and “How to sell a home” books and articles abound.  I’ve put together a short chapter for your review here..

Cleaning and packing stuff away is the most important of all the basic preparations.  Rooms, closets and garages need to look neat and clean and as roomy as possible.  Cluttered rooms and closets full of boxes and “stuff” make the home look smaller and buyers wonder if their stuff will fit.

The solution to the clutter is to simply get rid of it.  Everything that you don’t use on a regular basis (which means every other day at least)… put in storage or at least out of plain sight. Seriously get rid of a lot your things by packing them away.

Kitchens are the number one spot in most homes for clutter.  Quick, count the appliances and other items on your counters.  Where can you put all of them?  A few weeks of inconvenience in getting them out and putting them away or doing without them is well worth it.   Now go through each of your cabinets in your kitchen, all of the counter space, and all of the cupboards to make sure all are clean and neat of “unnecessary stuff.”  I’m especially fond of putting away about 2/3rds of all the coffee mugs and glasses into a box and storing them.

Remember that in your bedrooms less stuff is more appealing.  Pack away your clothes and shoes; only save the 25% to 35% that you’ve actually worn recently.  Take a close look to determine what can go. Pack away the books, toys, and gadgets you have lying around.  You might buy new bedspreads.  Make sure there is plenty of light in each bedroom; curtains and blinds open, freshen the air if needed.  Make sure all nook and crannies are clean.

Bathrooms:  clean out under the sink and the medicine cabinets (people will nose around) make sure there is plenty of light and tthey are spotless.  Do you need to re-caulk the tub and sinks? No mildew allowed. Air fresheners might also be in order.

Living rooms, family rooms, and dining rooms:  pack away the stuff.  Make them well-lit and immaculately clean.

Clean or re-paint all nicks and scuffs.  The newer Magic Erasers sponges work wonders on minor scuffs and may preclude the need for repainting.

Prepare the home when you can for each showing, dust, clean, spruce up, put out fresh flowers, turn on all the lights, and leave with your pets if they’re with a professional real estate agent!  If the buyers are on their own be prepared to answer questions honestly but don’t get emotional if they speak poorly about your house; someone has told them they can get it for less if they “tell you” why it’s in poor shape.

The yard should be free of debris, toys and clutter too.  Nice flowers can brighten up any area! Coil your hoses.  Put tools away.   What can you do to make the yard more appealing – a table and chair under a shade tree?  Repainting the swing set?  New mulch or flower beds? Tree or shrub trimming?

I don’t recommend spending a lot of money on granite countertops, new cabinets, appliances, etc.   Home improvements of this type rarely provide a good return on dollars spent.  Some real estate agents advocate spending a lot of your money without any supporting evidence that you’ll sell quicker and for more money.  For example spending $15,000 in a kitchen might only bring in $8000 at resale.  in some parts of the country swimming pools, spas, and upgraded appliances add no value at all according to the appraisers.

Here’s a continuation of some items that you might consider. They are inexpensive – but prudent – when getting your home ready for sale:

v     Make sure that the front of your home is spotless all the way up to the front door. Repaint and replace light fixtures if necessary. Often times the buyers spend a lot of time there why they wait for their real estate agent or you to open the door.  First impressions are hard to modify.

v     Make sure that all of your walls and outside exterior are washed down. No flaking paint. No wasp nests, no cobwebs.

v     Keep the window coverings open and the lights on at all times during showings unless you are hiding an outside eyesore or very close neighbor.

v     Clean and wash all visible features… like your windows, fireplaces, countertops and your tables before anybody sees your home.

v     Consider filling in any foundation cracks in the sidewalk, patios, driveway, or walls.

v     Repair any leaky faucets in the bathrooms and kitchen.

v     Keep your pets out of the way. If you hear them, or worse, smell them you may cost yourself a sale.

v     Fix any faulty, rusty, older appliances.

v     No drafts. Fix or caulk all windows and doors.

v     If your roof leaks or is visibly damaged it may be a good idea to hire a good roofer now; especially if your home is older.  A roof near the end of its life or damaged will be a problem during the inspection.

v     Outdoor lighting.  If you’re going to be showing your home at night – outdoor lighting is going to be crucially important.

v     Remove dead trees and shrubs.  It’s a good investment, especially in the front yard, to add new trees and shrubs or replace the old dead branches.

v     Everybody loves flowers, keep yours blooming.  The cost of replacing flowers is usually minor in comparison to the perceived value it gives your home.

v     Make sure the doorbell works.  You can replace it with a wireless one if needed. A broken doorbell is a bad start to any showing.

v     Have your mailbox repaired or replaced if not in great condition.

v     Oil or WD40 any squeaky hinges or doors.

v     Put out fresh towels in the bathroom.

v     Eliminate all pet odors.

v     Use potpourri types of fresheners throughout the house.

v     Try to get up the oil stains on your driveway or in your garage. Most hardware stores have concrete cleaner.

v     Paint, paint, paint. Nothing freshens a home up more.

v     Clean the gutter. Replace downspouts.  Make sure there are no running trails of water erosion in your yard.

v     Re-stain wood decks if necessary. Replace any rotted wood.

v     Make sure all stair railings are tight and secure.

v     Mow the grass. Trim all the edges and hedges of your yard.

v     If you have a fence – make sure it looks good. Paint it, replace broken boards etc.

v     Professionally clean all the carpets in your house.  You may need to replace them. Again, this is relatively inexpensive – but very profitable to your bottom-line.

v     Clean and Wax all appropriate floors.

v     Clean the curtains and window coverings. Replace them if they need replacing

v     Make sure any wallpaper is secure to the walls. Peeling wallpaper is a turnoff.

v     Straighten all pictures and mantel decorations. Too many pictures on a wall clutter it up.

v     Make the kitchen sparkle for each showing.

v     Gather the operating manuals and warranties for all major appliances and fixtures.

v     Replace any loose, chipped, or broken tiles in the bathrooms.

v     Replace shower curtain with a new, clean, bright and fresh one.

v     Make all beds – this seems obvious but it’s amazing how many homes I’ve shown with the beds not made and the rooms a mess. You may have to bribe a teenager to keep their room clean.  Pay them.

v     Keep all stairways uncluttered.

v     Have the furnace cleaned and inspected if you haven’t done it in over a year. This always comes up during the inspection anyway.

v     If your garage or basement is jam-packed full of “stuff” – rent a storage facility and move all the “stuff” to it immediately.

v     If you have an automatic garage door opener – makes sure it works.

Be sure that you go through each room before a showing or an open house. Remember that each new buyer is “new.”  They haven’t seen your home before- first impressions are critical.

Curb Appeal

 

Enhancing Curb Appeal

“Curb appeal” is “real-estate-ese” for everything prospective buyers can see from the street that might make them want to take a further look.  If the curb appeal is negative they’ll drive by slowly and move on. Enhancing curb appeal is critical to getting buyers to want to come inside.   You can sum up curb appeal by driving by your house and seeing if it invites you to come inside.

v     Neatness sells.  Crisp paint, trimmed lawn, neat shrubbery, a clean driveway, potted plants at the front door—put them all together, and drive-by buyers will probably want to see the rest of the house.

v     Hand in hand with neatness is “neutrality.”  If you are going to repaint, stick to light, neutral colors.  Keep the yard free of gardening tools and toys.  Remember, when a family looks at a house they are trying to paint a picture of what it would be like as their home.  If they say “I like the house but need to change that pink color”  you may lose them.

 

General Notes:

v     Remove/replace any special items that you don’t intend to leave behind; for example, the chandelier that you love.  Replace it before a buyer makes it a part of the negotiations.

v     Repair or replace all doors, closet doors, and windows and screens if there are holes, cracks, or rips.

v     Check that your doors don’t stick or have loose knobs.  Make sure your cabinet drawers have no loose knobs, as well.

v     Any cobwebs, wasp nests, ant hills etc.  should be removed.

v     Organize closets and remove stuff which is not necessary and put it in storage.  Large closets sell houses; well-organized closet looks much bigger than one crammed with clutter.

v     Remove excess extension cords, especially those in traffic ways.

v     Dress up windows in freshly laundered curtains, or dust/clean window blinds.

v     If any decoration is needed, (especially in the kitchen or bathroom), do it before the house is put on the market! $20.00 worth of paint may balance $100.00 in a price cut.

v     Open doors to the areas you want the buyer to see such as walk-in closets, pantries, etc.  Make sure those areas are neat.

v     If you have hidden features, like a stairway to the basement, consider making a sign that spells out that feature.

v     Ensure that all light fixtures are cleaned (dust chandeliers; clean out bugs from overhead lights; and lamps, etc.), and that there is a light bulb in every socket.

v     Clean all windowsills, as well as any space between windows and storm windows.  Windows should be in good repair with no cracks.

v     Any paint on windowpanes should be removed with a razor blade prior to cleaning.

Things to do In Lexington South Carolina   Leave a comment

Saturday Storytime
Lexington Main

Event Name: Saturday Story time at Lexington Library

Event Date: 1/28/2012

Event Description:
Time: 11:00 AM
Ages: all ages
Location: Meeting Room
Description: This family program allows all ages to experience the best in children’s literature, songs, and rhymes. Program lasts approximately 30 minutes. Call 785-2630 for more information.

“MEMORIES OF LEXINGTON’S OLD MILL”: 7-11 p.m. Saturday 1/28/2012 at the Lexington Municipal Complex, 111 Maiden Lane, Lexington. Gala fundraiser for the Lexington County Museum will feature The Great Society Band and recognition of mill workers and those who led restoration efforts. Tickets are $40; (803) 359-8369

For Sale By Owner in Lexington South Carolina   Leave a comment

For Sale By Owner in Lexington South Carolina

Welcome!  I love this business. The purpose of this booklet is to give you the tools you need to get your home sold in today’s’ challenging market. Using these tips and techniques will give you the competitive edge you need to conquer not only the other “For Sale By Owner” in your community… but also the competition of all homes for sale.

Selling on your own requires that you think like a buyer.  When you put yourself in a buyers’ shoes you realize that every home for sale competes with each other. This competition includes all the other “For Sale By Owner’s” and professionally listed homes in the Lexington South Carolina market area… short-sales, foreclosures, real estate owned (REO’s) must be factored into this competition … and in order to be successful selling on your own you need to have a proven plan in place to capture that elusive “right buyer” at the right price.

If you have the knowledge, if you have the marketing expertise, and if you know the process involved getting a home sold on your own than you will have an above average chance to do just that… and save literally thousands of dollars in commissions.

One thing you need to understand right up front is that the only differences between you and a Lexington South Carolina real estate professional or another “For Sale By Owner” are knowledge and experience.  Experience is tough to gain but knowledge is available here and at other sources.

In 2010 roughly 9% of all residential real estate sales were “for sale by owner.” The National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers reports this and several other interesting facts; a little over half of all FSBO sellers knew their buyer before they sold their home (i.e. they sold to a friend or relative or neighbor.)  That leaves 4% to 5% (out of roughly 5.2 million sales) selling on their own to a buyer they didn’t know before they started this process.  That’s a lot of successful for sale by owner. My booklet assumes you don’t already know your buyer and need to find them.

The true bottom line is that you can do it.  I talk to people every month that sell on their own. It’s hard work, involves a lot of time, some expenses, and having a plan.  You need to decide whether the costs savings are worth the effort involved.

If you would like to get a copy of My FREE “For Sale By Owner” handbook please dont hesitate to Contact me.  I will also be doing a series of For Sale By Owner in Lexington South Carolina here on my blog.

Chip Jefferson, Realtor ©
Exit Real Estate Consultants 
Mobile 803-360-0491
www.Chip Jefferson.com

Lexington, SC Real Estate Market Trends: 1/21/2012   Leave a comment

Market Trends: 1/21/2012

MT HOREB PRESENT PHIL WICKHAM   1 comment

CONCERTS AT MT HOREB PRESENT PHIL WICKHAM ON JANUARY 29TH AT 7:00PM

An acclaimed singer/songwriter, Phil Wickham has a multi-faceted sound of a much older soul and shimmering melodies that match the intensity of his heartfelt lyrics. It’s his personal journey of faith expressed in the songs that really makes his concerts an unforgettable experience. “Phil has such an incredible sense of melody, lyrics that read like poetry, and I believe the listener will leave with feelings of the greatness of God, and at the same time the desire for God to have an intimate relationship with us.”….Christian Musician Magazine

An upclose and personal concert experience! Doors will open at 6:30PM. All tickets are $10. Tickets on sale now….. www.concertsatmthoreb.com or call 359-3495 ext 234. Don’t miss it!