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  • Home Improvements that Pay You Back

    Posted on January 28th, 2014 acimetta No comments

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  • Getting Your Home Ready for Sale

    Posted on November 19th, 2013 acimetta No comments

    By switching the positions of the sofa and the armchair, we were able to open up the living room and make the space look bigger.

    Selling your home is a big project… daunting at times. But if you put enough prep work into it, you can sell it quickly. In fact, the more effort you put into readying your home for sale, can actually shorten the amount of time it takes to sell it.

    My latest listing in Redondo Beach is the perfect example. My clients and I sat down and made a thorough To Do list.

    1. The first thing on their list was to rent a storage space. We needed to de-clutter their house. By re-arranging their furniture and eliminating some bulky pieces, we were able to properly display the floor plan and create a warm, inviting space. And since they would be moving anyway, it didn’t hurt to get a jump start on some of their packing.

    2. We identified certain upgrades in the house that would bring the most bang for their buck. For instance, all the appliances in the kitchen were stainless steel except for the dishwasher. A $500 investment in a new dishwasher helped us complete the updated, polished look for the kitchen. Painting a light, neutral color in the living space freshened the home up and made it even lighter and brighter. And painting the exterior wood and trim gave the house an affordable and quick face lift. Finally, we replaced all the interior doors from a flat wood to paneled doors, immediately giving the home a more modern feel. They cleaned up the yard and planted some flowers to add some color.

    3. They took care of some minor repairs prior to listing.

    All in they spent approximately $10,000 but effectively raised their home from a $725,000 price point to a $775,000 price point. That’s what I call a good return on their investment! And they sold their home in 2 days with multiple offers.

    There’s no one way to do this. Each home is different; each market is different. But it’s always a good idea to evaluate your home’s condition and determine if there’s anything you can do to improve how your home shows.

    Of course, not all sellers have money to spend prior to selling, and that’s okay too. You do what you can and some projects can be done relatively inexpensively such as doing your own gardening. Or if you don’t want to spend money on a storage unit, you can get away with storing things in your garage. Sometimes power washing the outside of your home will do wonders, and it’s much less expensive than painting.

    But most importantly, if you need to sell your home As Is without making any repairs or upgrades, then it’s crucial to market it accordingly. There’s nothing worse than touting a home with a gourmet kitchen and disappointing would-be buyers when they walk into a kitchen from the 1950s that has never been updated. You’re setting yourself up for failure. I’d rather have clients pleasantly surprised when they walk into a home, then standing there trying to figure out from which angle the photo was taken because the room looked so much bigger online.

  • Design Tip – Travertine

    Posted on March 12th, 2013 acimetta No comments

    Home buyers still appreciate travertine. It’s elegant and has a crisp, clean look. Travertine can be a challenge to keep clean however because it is porous. It’s important to seal the travertine – a couple of coats – to make it easier to clean. Otherwise, polishing powders, and such, can accumulate in the holes. Travertine is great for floors, but not as good an idea for highly used countertops.

  • Home Remodeling Tip: How much does it cost to install wood floors?

    Posted on February 27th, 2013 acimetta No comments

    It depends on what type of wood you choose. I just helped a client get their home ready for sale and we replaced the carpet with bamboo. It cost them $8 per square foot. Stairs are more expensive. The treads were $40 per lineal foot and the risers were $10 per lineal foot. They did a total of 425 sq feet of flooring which came to approximately $3690 (not including stairs) including removal of existing tile/carpeting, subfloor prep,and some additional items.

    We chose bamboo because it was already installed in other rooms in the house. But the good news was that bamboo is less expensive than hardwoods. You could spend $10, $20, maybe more, per square foot, for some hardwoods.

    You can also look into reengineered hardwood floors. I believe they are less expensive. The top is hardwood and underneath is plywood. It’s less thick than a real hardwood floor, but you can still sand them down a couple of times and refinish them unlike laminate floors.