- Declutter & Spruce up.
Empty your basement, garage, attic, closets and other spaces of unused belongings and apply a fresh coat of neutrally colored paint.
If you are selling your home, inspect your house for issues that might concern a buyer. Check with your town as to any local inspections that might be required. Address issues with wells, septic systems, underground oil tanks and radon prior to listing a house for sale. If you are purchasing a home, hire a New Jersey licensed home inspector to conduct a thorough inspection on your behalf.
- Hire Experienced Professionals.
Interview several full-time experienced Realtors before hiring one. You need to be comfortable and need to trust your Realtor. Hire an attorney who has experience in real estate closings. Obtain written cost estimates for the closing costs in advance.
If you are selling your home, set a realistic listing price. Overpriced homes stay on the market far longer. The longer a house is on the market, the less interest buyers and realtors have in your home.
Budget more time than you expect to move out of your home. If possible, move out the day prior to the closing to allow yourself sufficient time to clean and prepare the house for buyer's final walk-through prior to the closing. Most walk-through isuses can be avoided by making sure the house is completely empty, clean and free of debris. Don't think the buyer will be happy if you leave Grandpa's workbench and ten cans of touch-up paint in the garage for them.
Discuss with your Realor realistic deadlines and closing dates. Consider avoiding the last few days of the month for a closing as these are the busiest times for lenders, attorneys, banks and title companies. By avoiding the end-of-the-month rush, you can assure yourself of better, prompter service.
- Clean Up Your Financial House.
If you are planning on buying a home, order a credit report to check for any issues that would concern a lender. Be sure to have copies of tax returns, payroll stubs and rental payments available for potential lenders. If you are planning on selling your home, have copies of your deed, title insurance policy and property survey available.
- Location, Location, Location.
Research the communities you are considering along with their schools, hospitals, transportation and other amenities. If you find a home you are interested in purchasing, be sure to visit the home weekdays and weekends, as well as during the daytime and evening hours.
Clear lines of communication must be established between you and your professionals, whether it is by telephone, letter or e-mail. Remember you are the customer.
Enjoy the experience of purchasing your new home or the experience of selling your home and the future opportunities they bring.
This article is contributed by Kevin ONeill of Coldwell Banker Realtors and Thomas K. Thorp, an attorney in Hackettstown. Kevin and Tom are both members of the Hackettstown Regional Medical Center Foundation and its Planned Giving Committee. Kevin and Tom encourage you to consider the HRMC Foundation in your charitable giving. Call (908) 850-6876 for more information.
The Hackettstown Regional Medical Center Foundation is the Foundation of Support for HRMC. Consider a charitable donation to the HRMC Foundation today. Call (908) 850-6876 for more information.