5 Helpful Tips to Buy a Home in the Age of the Internet

5 Helpful Tips to Buy a Home in the Age of the Internet

 Buying a home can be an overwhelming process, and trying to cipher through the amount of information about the home buying process on the internet can be the hardest part. However, don’t let the endless amount of information overwhelm you! The internet is an incredible source to get you through buying your first, third, or tenth home. It is continually updated in order to help you through the process. Here is a great list of ways to utilize the internet to your advantage when buying a home by Andrew Fortune: “Local Neighborhood Info One of the most important aspects of buying a home is understanding the neighborhoods and areas in which you are interested. Using the internet to learn more about the areas you’re considering can help narrow down the neighborhoods that work best for your needs. Many neighborhoods with homeowners associations now post their bylaws, covenants and restrictions online. You can find all kinds of valuable info in these documents, and even the fiscal health of the association. Simply do a quick Google search of the neighborhoods in which you are interested to find out more about them. Step-By-Step Guides How-tos on getting a mortgage, finding a real estate agent and making an offer are all right at a homebuyer’s fingertips online. Even if you have previously bought and sold a few homes, it’s still nice to know that this information is online, in case you need a quick refresher course. But note that the process of buying a home can vary slightly based on different regions of the country. Be sure to find resources that are specific to the area in which you are looking for a home. Finding Professional Services Most homebuyers will need the services of real estate professionals to get the job done. Realtors, mortgage lenders, title companies, home inspectors and appraisers are all a part of the process. The internet is a great resource to research and find the right professional that fits your needs. Property Tax Records Tax records can show when a property was last sold, how much it sold for, how much the buyer financed and details about the previous owners. This information can be valuable for many different reasons. Property tax record websites differ by area – many times they are maintained by the county. If your county has a property tax website, this can be a great resource to find data about certain homes online. Permit History Most counties have some sort of regulation on building and construction permits. It’s likely that this information is available online and available to the public. If so, you can learn a lot about a property based on this information. Homebuyers can check to see when the water heater...

Read More

5 Hot Curb Appeal Trends for 2016

5 Hot Curb Appeal Trends for 2016

Curb appeal is in the eyes of the buyer. But as Texas Tech University researchers Emmett Elam and Andrea Stigarall point out, the precise factors that influence a homebuyer’s perceptions of curb appeal are debatable. What is not debatable is the lift that curb appeal gives to the value of a home. Improving the curb appeal of your home can boost its value by as much as 17 percent, the Texas Tech researchers found. They say curb appeal ranks second only to home size in weighing a home’s value. While the notion of curb appeal has been around for decades, its appeal keeps rising. Mischel Schonberg, a spokeswoman for Mason, Ohio-based garage door manufacturer Clopay, says: “Home improvement shows and magazines have drilled the importance of curb appeal into the minds of homeowners looking to increase the value and appearance of their homes.” Here are five top-of-mind trends for curb appeal in 2016. 1. Update the front door A fresh coat of paint can spruce up a ho-hum front door and help make a better first impression when someone is eyeing your home. Veronica Solomon, owner and lead designer at Casa Vilora Interiors in Katy, Texas, says: “Painting a front door a bold color is my favorite curb appeal trend. It creates interest and a focal point to the façade of the home. It gives the home personality. It is inexpensive to do, but has an immediate and big impact.” Pat McGeehan, CEO of real estate investment company Four Front Properties in Spring Lake, N.J., suggests contrasting the color of your front door with the color palette of your front yard. He also recommends installing a new knob on the front door — one that’s shiny and ornamental. If you replace the front door altogether, beware that you’ll need to pony up more money than if you just touch up the door with a fresh coat of paint. According to the Remodeling 2015 Cost vs. Value Report, the average cost of replacing a front door on a home is $1,230 (steel) or $2,926 (fiberglass), with an owner being able to recover 102 percent of the cost for the steel door or 72 percent of the cost for the fiberglass door. 2. Lighten up the exterior Outdoor lighting can add a touch of elegance to your front of your home. Furthermore, it can enhance the safety of your house. Outdoor lighting should go beyond ordinary lampposts and wall-mounted lighting to make your landscaping really stand out. Try installing stylish and modern lighting on your front porch. A 2012 survey by the National Association of Home Builders found that 90 percent of homebuyers rated exterior lighting as an “essential” or “desirable”...

Read More

Breakfast Provided by NEST at Paddle Jam 2015!

Breakfast Provided by NEST at Paddle Jam 2015!

Please come down to the Steiner Ranch Lake Club on October 18th to support the Kristin McLain’s Get Out Girl Paddle Jam benefitting the Flatwater Foundation!  Nest Properties is hosting breakfast for the 125+ paddle boarders who will be out participating in this wonderful event!  More info at https:www.classy.org/austin/events/kristin-mclains-get-out-girl-paddle-jam/e54702.  

Read More