Todd Alperin - Coco, Early & Associates The Olivares, Molina & Alperin Division



Posted by Todd Alperin on 7/12/2020

Photo by Christina Morillo from Pexels

If you're a first-time homebuyer and you've already started exploring available properties, you might think to yourself, "Why do I even need a buyer agent?" After all, you've been looking at homes for sale and the realtors who showed you the properties were very nice and helpful. But here's the deal: Those realtors are seller agents. They represent the home seller. They are legally, morally and ethically bound to get the best possible deal for the seller -- not for you as the buyer! This is just one of the reasons why first-time homebuyers can really benefit from working with a buyer's agent. Here are some more advantages.

Buyer Agents Work for You -- The Buyer

Once you're prequalified and your buyer agent understands the features you want in your first home, the agent will locate for-sale properties that fit your criteria. Not only that, but the buyer agent will coordinate and schedule showings of those properties for you. You don't have to do all of the legwork. And remember: As your representative, the buyer agent is out to find the best possible deal on a first-time home purchase for you.

Buyer Agents Are Great Negotiators

Every home sale and purchase is bound to hit a snag or two along the way. It's a lengthy process to buy or sell a home, and it's also a highly emotional transaction for buyers and sellers. It is, after all, the largest emotional and financial transaction that most people will make in their lifetime. Therefore, the negotiating skills of a buyer agent will be of great benefit to you as a homebuyer. If something starts to go wrong, they know how to negotiate a fix and they know professionals within their network who can help iron out problems -- from titling companies to real estate attorneys and even contractors to fix unexpected problems with the property.

Buyer Agents Are Property Experts

If you look at a home, do you know all the potential problem spots to examine to ensure that it won't have hidden costs? For example, can you tell if the plumbing is too old and will need major repairs within five years? Can you assess the age and functionality of the furnace, hot water heater and other features? Probably not -- but the buyer agent can because he or she has that experience.

Best of all, buyer agents don't charge any upfront or ongoing fees for their services. They split the commission with the seller agent who works for the home seller. For all these reasons and more, it makes great sense to put the expertise of a buyer agent to work for you!




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Posted by Todd Alperin on 7/5/2020

Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

As homeowners, we can get fairly strategic about hiding the flaws in our home. We might move the sofa over a water stain on the hardwood or put a rug over a crack, tear or discoloration. While you'd never try to hide this stuff from potential homebuyers, it does keep it out of view when guests come over. And at least for a moment you too forget the damage is there.

But covering floor damage isn't always your best option. And knowing when to cover and when you resurface is vital to your home's health and happiness. 

When Not to Cover

Don't cover if:

  • Damage is in a location with significant foot traffic. In these cases, covering could cause a tripping hazard.
  • Spot smells bad. If that spot is a pet mistake or smells mildewy, then you may no longer smell it. But your house guests do, and a rug will just soak up the smell. Refinishing can remove layers of deep-set smells from your floor.
  • The floor is sinking or uneven. This might suggest a rotting baseboard, which needs to be replaced. It's pretty easy to replace baseboards. But you'd need to pull up a section of your floor to do so, which may require professional help.
  • In these scenarios, it's time to refinish the floor. Here's how it's done.

    How to Refinish a Hardwood Floor

    First, check to make sure your floor is refinishable. A faux wood floor can be convincing. If it's laminate, then you'll need to replace it. But the good news is that you may only have to replace sections if they still make the product.

    You can refinish:

  • Wood
  • Bamboo
  • Cork (but only a professional should attempt it)
  • Remove everything in the room, including items on the wall. Dust will get everywhere. It's easier to clean up if you have fewer surfaces to dust afterward.

    Next, rent an electric floor sander. They come in coarse, medium and fine. You need all three to do the job, starting with coarse then moving back to fine. Always put on your safety goggles when using a hand or electric sander.

    If you have any nicks to fill, use wood putty. Slather it over the area. Let it dry. Then sand with a hand sander using fine sandpaper.

    Remove the dust you produced while sanding with a dust filtered shop vacuum. But you'll find that doesn't get all of it. A wax-impregnated cheese cloth can pick up what remains.

    Now, apply at least two coats of your polyurethane, varnish or penetrating sealer. Let that final coat dry at least 24 hours before moving furniture back in.

    For more helpful home revitalization tips, follow our blog. 




    Categories: Uncategorized  


    Posted by Todd Alperin on 6/28/2020

    To sell your home, one of the essential things for you is to stage your home. While the price of your home is often dictated by the market and your own surroundings, the people who are going to buy your home ultimately need to have some attraction to it.


    The question is- can you stage your home yourself, or do you need to leave the home staging to the professionals? Either way, you may need to spend a little bit of cash in order for the home staging to actually work well. 


    Declutter


    The first step in the home staging process is for you to declutter the home. Get rid of anything thatís taking up space, or making the home appear ďjunked up.Ē No one can picture themselves living in a cluttered home. 


    Hire A Maid


    If youíre doing the home staging yourself, one of the most important aspects of getting your home ready is making it clean. A maid service can provide that deep clean that you may not have time to do yourself. This service is definitely worth the investment to make your home presentable to potential buyers.


    Professional Home Staging Is Pricey


    Professional home staging can cost quite a bit, (we're talking thousands of dollars.) You can do a lot yourself to stage your home. You donít need to spend top dollar in order to have your home staged appropriately. Just know that homes that are staged correctly (whether professionally or by you) sell for more.


    Staging Gives Buyers Vision


    It may be hard for buyers to envision a room any other way than how you currently have it set up. People may not be able to picture a chair in the corner or a bed in a different position. You can play around with the furniture in your home to make the rooms look best. 


    Add Some Paint


    One of the easiest things that you can do to stage your home is to paint it. Even if you simply put a fresh coat on the doors, it can really add some appeal to the home. If you have the time, you should paint the rest of the homeís interior as well. Buyers are most attracted to neutral colors. If you have any rooms that are oddly colored, or looking rough due to age, some paint can really bring life into the home.  


    Make Each Room Inviting

    When potential buyers walk through the home, you donít want them to simply skim the house without checking out each individual room. See what draws you into the room, whether it be lighting, a fireplace, or an ornament on the door. Any of these small touches can make a big difference when you stage your home.




    Categories: Uncategorized  


    Posted by Todd Alperin on 6/21/2020

    Image by Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay

    Everyone's ideal home is different. Age, family size, budget and location all factor into the home buying process. Here's a brief look at the types of properties that attract different people.

    Apartments

    Apartments are usually a stepping stone for young professionals as they save up for a home. They are also convenient for people who move often and don't want to go through the hassle of buying and selling a house. Having maintenance services, various lease options and on-site amenities are strong selling points. Location will play the most prominent role in rent prices and demand.

    Ranch-Style Homes & Smaller Houses

    Single-story homes, condos and townhomes make solid starter homes for young professionals and couples. If the home is in a reputable school district and/or close to shopping centers and major roadways, it will attract buyers of all ages. Two houses with the same design and square footage will command very different prices and interest depending on the location.

    Homes with Large Yards

    These types of homes are ideal for families with kids and/or pets. Older buyers who enjoy privacy and quiet will also appreciate the acreage. Many buyers will gladly choose a smaller house with a large yard than the inverse.

    Larger Homes

    Higher end homes will mostly attract buyers far into their careers who have significant savings. Depending on the location, these homes will often meet with either high demand or stay on the market for a while. High-end homes sell best in a high-income area and will have a niche market in a less affluent neighborhood.

    Office Buildings

    Companies and small business owners rent offices to grow their operations. Successful enterprises often result in multi-year leases.

    Retail Properties

    From downtown storefronts to large shopping centers, retail properties can serve as everything from grocery stores to hobby shops to restaurants. The landlord may also receive a percentage of the property's sales on top of the monthly rent.

    Mixed-Use Commercial Properties

    Multi-story commercial buildings are often home to various businesses. You might see a shoe store next to a dentist with a corporate office above and a restaurant below. These properties are usually bought by experienced investors with substantial assets. They will then rent the space to various businesses as a way to diversify their portfolio and hedge against risk.

    Whether you're buying or selling, it pays to choose the best option based on your situation. Having an experienced real estate agent on your side can help you secure a great deal in any neighborhood.




    Tags: house   Apartment   condominium   lifestyle  
    Categories: Uncategorized  


    Posted by Todd Alperin on 6/14/2020

    Photo by Gerd Altmann via Pixabay

    Once you sign a purchase agreement, whether you are the buyer or seller, it is very difficult to back out of it. However, as a buyer, you are able to back out if your real estate agent drafts the contract properly. Real estate agents use a standard contract. That does not mean that you have to accept the contract as it is written. You, as a buyer or seller, may make amendments to the contract. If you do make amendments, don’t get so crazy that the other party will file it in the round file.

    Exceptions

    Almost every real estate contract you see will have exceptions. In most cases, the buyer or seller has to add the exceptions. An exception is a condition that the buyer or seller has to meet. If the buyer or seller cannot meet that condition, the contract gets canceled and the buyer gets their earnest money back. Some examples of exceptions include:

    • Pending the buyer’s ability to obtain financing;

    • Pending a termite inspection;

    • Pending a home inspection; or

    • Pending clear title.

    These are the most common exceptions, though buyers and sellers are not limited to only these. As for home inspections, buyers and sellers often negotiate repairs. If the repairs are significant, the buyer may ask the seller to grant a credit or to make the repair to keep the contract. If the seller refuses and the home inspection is listed as an exception, the buyer may back out and get their earnest money back.

    Natural Disasters and Accidents

    If Mother Nature rips down the house with a tornado or does extensive damage with a hurricane, the buyer may choose to back out of the contract without forfeiting their earnest money. If a fire burns the house down, whether it’s a forest fire or arson, the buyer may back out, as long as the buyer had no hand in the arson crime.

    Other reasons a buyer may back out without forfeiting their earnest money include:

    • Flooding;

    • Extensive damage by trespassers;

    • If the buyer finds that the house is full of mold;

    • If the buyer finds that the seller did not disclose that the house had lead paint or asbestos.

    Some contracts are written so that the buyer cannot back out because the seller did not disclose lead paint or asbestos. It is up to the buyer to ensure the clause in the contract is written so that they may back out of the contract. In fact, if asbestos or lead paint is a major concern for the buyer and the house is older, they may want to add that as an exception.

    Always read real estate contracts carefully, including disclosures made by the seller. Amend the contract with exceptions if you are concerned about anything that may devalue the property.




    Tags: home seller   Contract   Homebuyer  
    Categories: Uncategorized