Cobb Real Estate Insight by mac_scheidegger
Increase the Chances of Selling Your Home in the First Months of the Year
January 21, 2013 12:05 PM | 15244 views | 0 0 comments | 1322 1322 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

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Increase the Chances of Selling Your Home in the First Months of the Year
by mac_scheidegger
January 21, 2013 12:04 PM | 3893 views | 0 0 comments | 277 277 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
According to the National Association of Realtors, January and February see the fewest home sale closings. A variety of issues, including seasonal weather and less sunlight in the afternoons, can put a damper on potential home buyers coming to look at your home.

So with the market not usually picking up again until April and May, how can you increase the chances of getting your home sold in the first months of the year?

First, because there generally are fewer homes for sale during this time, the competition should be a little thinner. The key is getting your home to stand out - both during realtor and internet searches as well as during home visits.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

Focus on the Basics

A clean, tidy look will always help. This means the inside of the house as well as the yard. Curb appeal is essential as the appearance of your home is a buyer's first impression. This applies to photos taken of the house for marketing purposes as well as for in-home visits.

Keep the lawn clean and free of downed limbs and dead grass spots. Also, add some color to the winter yard by picking up a few inexpensive plants for the yard or front porch.

Inside the house, remove extra furniture and display items. You want rooms to look larger. A clutter-free approach will help.

Taking care of needed maintenance and repairs is also essential. Make sure everything that a potential buyer might turn on or open up will work.

Outsmart Winter

If it's cold and dark outside, make it warm and bright inside. Stage your home so that your rooms look bigger, brighter, warmer and more appealing.

If people can envision themselves relaxing in your living room or making an evening meal in your kitchen, then you've done your job.

Warm colors, comfortable decorations and even a warm room temperature can add to the "I'm comfortable here" feeling that potential buyers are looking for in a new home.

Also, good lighting in key. Turn on all the lights in the house during evening showings - both inside and out. You want to capture interest from the moment they pull into the driveway. Having bright lights on is one way to do that. You can also encourage daytime showings to take advantage winter's natural light.

Get Your Realtor Excited

With less competition in the first few months of the year, your house can stand out. Try to get your realtor excited about taking some extra steps in marketing your home.

Ask if there are any extra marketing opportunities they might suggest, whether it's something they can help you with or something you can do on your own.

Remember, selling your house is often a team effort. Your realtor will work hard for you and provide you a good foundation for marketing your home, but there are tactics you can employ as well. Email your listing to friends and ask them to share with their friends. Get on Facebook. Post a note at work. The end goal is to sell your home quickly and at the right price. That's something you can help with.
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Seven Home Buying Mistakes That Could Cost You Money
by mac_scheidegger
December 19, 2012 08:57 AM | 4712 views | 0 0 comments | 282 282 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Buying a home is one of the most important financial investments you are likely to make. Because of that, it's critical to make the right decisions at each and every stage of the the buying process.

And whether you're a new home buyer or an experienced one, there are missteps that you'll want to avoid.

Here are seven home buying mistakes that could cost you money:

  • Working without a buyer's agent
  • Ignorance of the local real estate market
  • Making an offer that is not packaged
  • Exposing yourself to excessive risks
  • Hesitation - not acting quickly enough
  • Choosing the wrong mortgage or lender
  • Not understanding how to properly hold your title
Confused? Don't be...

An experienced, local real estate agent can help you through the home buying process. They'll know the ins and outs of the local market, the neighborhoods and the best schools. They know traffic patterns, the up and coming areas and can help match your needs to a the right home.

They'll also understand and guide you through 'the process' of purchasing a home, including:

  • How to begin searching for a home
  • How to make an offer
  • What to ask for from the seller
  • How to negotiate
  • Who to contact for services – a handyman, inspectors, attorneys, foundation experts, etc

Mac Scheidegger is the owner of STEP Realty, Inc., a Mableton real estate agency focused on helping clients with every stage of the home buying and home selling process . With over 16 years in the Mableton, Smyrna and the Vinings area, Mac is a local real estate expert. Mac can be found at
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Good News For Home Sellers in Marietta As Home Sales Jump
by mac_scheidegger
October 08, 2012 09:04 AM | 4973 views | 0 0 comments | 280 280 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
As a real estate expert, I have seen the highs and lows of working in the housing market. The past few years have been tough for American home sales, including homes in the Mableton, Smyrna, Vinings and the surrounding areas of Marietta and Cobb County.

But just as the Atlanta Braves can march back to the playoffs, the housing market can also pick up speed. Ready for the good news? U.S. home sales are at their highest since May 2010!

According to the National Association of Realtors and the Commerce Department:

  • Sales of previously occupied homes rose 7.8% in August to their highest level in more than two years
  • Homebuilders broke ground on 2.3% more homes and apartments in August than July
  • New home construction has increased to its best rate since April 2010
  • Homes are selling more quickly now then they were this time last year. In August 2011, the median timeframe for sale closures was 92 days. August 2012’s median is 70 days
  • The average price of homes fell slightly in August, but that average is 9.5 percent higher than prices a year ago. The reason for the price gain? Sales of foreclosed homes and short sales have declined, and it’s foreclosures and short sales that can bring down overall home prices
The housing market is making steady progress after years of small gains. If you are considering buying or selling a home in Marietta, these new statistics may give you the vote of confidence you need to take that next step!

Also remember to consult your real estate agent. He or she will give you the advice you need to get started. You may also want to converse with your local banker, financial consultant or insurance agent as well before dipping your toe into the real estate market.

Mac Scheidegger BIO:
Mac Scheidegger is the owner of STEP Realty, Inc., a Mableton real estate agency focused on helping clients with every stage of the home buying and home selling process . With over 16 years in the Mableton, Smyrna and the Vinings area, Mac is a local real estate expert. Mac can be found at
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End Of Summer Projects For Home Sellers
by mac_scheidegger
August 22, 2012 11:14 AM | 4583 views | 0 0 comments | 282 282 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Though it’s not technically the end of summer yet, with school beginning, it certainly feels like it.

As a Realtor, the end of summer is when I let my clients know that if they are planning to sell their home, the next two months are a good time to be finalizing projects on the outside of their home.

And while it’s still warm here in Atlanta now, the next two months should be pleasant and are a great time for working outside.

Your end of summer projects should include:

  • Outdoor painting touchups
  • Window washing
  • Fixing broken fences, gates and mailboxes
  • Outdoor calking and sealing
  • Deck and patio maintenance
  • Fall planting and landscaping
Unless your home requires major fixes, the above list should be something you can affordably accomplish over the course of a weekend or two.

These end of summer projects give your home increased curb appeal, which is important heading into the fall season. Home buyers tend to base part of their home buying decisions on aesthetics. If your house can look better than another house under consideration, you have a better chance of selling your home. You may also be able to sell your home at a higher price.

It’s certainly worth the effort involved. Plus, you won’t have to be doing these outside projects when the weather turns colder and it’s less comfortable to be working outside. Fall and winter is when home buyers should be working on interior projects to make their house look nicer.

Your Realtor should be able to provide you with helpful information like this as you prepare your home for sale. You can use their experience and local knowledge to get a leg up on the competition and get your home sold faster.
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Summer Housing Market Cools As School Starts Soon, But Opportunities Remain
by mac_scheidegger
August 07, 2012 10:28 AM | 4756 views | 1 1 comments | 301 301 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
As summer winds down, many families across Atlanta are hoping to finalize the purchase of their new homes. Historically, many people use the summer time to move. They want their children to finish up in one school before moving to another new school. And quite often, they prefer to be settled in a new home so routines are set and their children are comfortable before entering an unfamiliar school.

In Cobb County, the first day of school is August 13th. Unless you're in the final stages of closing, you'll have to move after school begins.

While most people prefer to be moved in before that first school bell rings, there are some things to consider. If you're moving within the same school district or just around the corner, waiting until September and October can result in some good deals. There is less competition for the homes on the market and sellers may be willing to reduce their asking price as the hot summer market has cooled down. There is also the possibility of moving during the holidays in December as schools have extended vacations between the fall and spring semesters. Timing the closings and move in dates during Winter break can be a mixture of science and art!

Wherever you are in the buying process, remember that your goal is to find the home most suitable to you and your family. Location, cost, condition of the home and many other factors combine to make the search wonderfully exhilarating. And although summer is nearly over, there are many opportunities that still remain.
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Margaret Pavey
August 09, 2012
There never is the perfect time to move. Mac does well in pointing out the positives of even what appears like a less then prefect time to buy a home and move.

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