Thomas Murphy - Pine Shores Real Estate



Posted by Thomas Murphy on 8/2/2020

Photo by Harli Marten on Unsplash

Although it may seem like putting the cart before the horse, a strong case can be made for purchasing your retirement home before your golden years. In fact, with some deft financial planning, it may be worthwhile to buy your retirement home decades in advance. That may seem counterintuitive, but maybe other folks have been doing it backward. Whether you are a Millennial, Gen Xer, or Baby Boomer, the best time to plan ahead is right now. Consider these strategies.

Why Buying Now Saves Retirement Dollars

The Gen X crowd was born between 1965-1979, making them 40- and 50-somethings. Those are generally prime financial years. In many cases, they’re nearing the end of a mortgage and are probably enjoying the fruits of many years of savings. This means having equity and resources at their disposal to make a move on a property now.

The argument for paying off an existing home loan or doubling-up if it’s reasonably low rests on data that the home values continue to rise. Consider these incremental increases in median home sales pricing.

  • 1970: $23,400
  • 1980: $64,60
  • 1990: $122,90
  • 2000: $169,000
  • 2010: $221,800
  • The median price routinely topped $300,000 in 2019, and the robust economy, coupled with an inventory shortfall, is expected to drive prices upward. If you were to have purchased your retirement home just 10 years ago, your savings would have amounted to nearly $100,000, plus lower interest payments. Those are real retirement dollars.

    Why Buying Your Retirement Home First Makes Sense

    One of the strategies savvy Millennials are employing is to purchase an “investment property” rather than a primary residence first. That may seem like thinking way outside the box, but the math and lifestyle considerations can make it a smart play.

    This demographic runs between 23 and 38 years old, and they have grown up in a vastly different culture than their predecessors. Some are straight out of college struggling with student loan debt, and even the top end of the age bracket has members still evolving their careers in many cases. These factors tend to position Millennials for ongoing relocation as they take advantage of emerging opportunities. Rather than be burdened with buying and selling a home, it’s easier to rent.

    Financially sharp Millennials, among others, have purchased properties in culturally rich areas that lend themselves to college students and tourism. The strategy is to enlist the help of a real estate professional who oversees renting, upkeep, and allow the asset to pay for itself. In many cases, it may even yield a profit. When retirement age arrives, there can be ample revenue to do a full remodel and just pay the taxes while you collect a pension or social security.

    Although buying a retirement home prior to punching out for the last time may seem odd at first, it’s in your best interest to run the numbers both ways. Consider all the moving parts and detailed costs to make an informed decision about your best time to but a retirement home.




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    Posted by Thomas Murphy on 7/26/2020

    Although location is one of the most important factors that will impact the marketability of your home, it's not the only thing prospective buyers are thinking about.

    If they're organized, focused, and serious about finding the right property for their needs, they've probably developed a detailed checklist of "must haves" and a "wish list."

    In all likelihood, those who are working with a real estate agent are being shown properties that conform to their requirements and many of their wish-list items. A comprehensive list would include everything from the number of bedrooms and bathrooms they want to square footage and the quality of the school district.

    Many people also have specific preferences about features like floor plans, amount of storage space, the size of the backyard, architectural style, and the availability of a fireplace, patio, porch, deck, eat-in kitchen, two-car garage, and privacy features. Some are even looking for the traditional white picket fence in front of the house!

    While your home can't be "all things to all people," it is highly recommended to target the widest possible audience. Your agent, a home staging consultant, or a home decorator can provide you with valuable tips on how to achieve that outcome.

    Stand Out and Get Noticed

    Just looking good on paper, though, is not always enough to attract motivated buyers. Prospects need to love what they see and be inspired to envision themselves living in your house. Doing what you can to create irresistible curb appeal is one vital aspect of making a great first impression. A manicured lawn, a fresh coat of paint (if needed), and some strategic home staging -- inside and out -- can make all the difference in your results!

    Curb appeal is vitally important because that sets the stage, so to speak, for creating high expectations in your prospects. Once you get them in a positive frame of mind, they'll be more inclined to notice all the positive aspects of your home. If your house meets all or most of their requirements and is arranged in a way that's pleasing to them, a purchase offer and negotiations may be right around the corner.

    One of the most crucial hurdles to clear in getting prospects to consider buying your house is to help them imagine living, relaxing, raising a family, and pursuing their interests in your home. Your real estate agent can help you effectively stage the interior and exterior of your home to make it inviting and appealing to the widest range of potential buyers.

    You can support their sales and marketing efforts by making sure your home is always clean, fresh smelling, and ready to be shown at a moment's notice to house hunters. Doing your best to eliminate clutter, keeping counter tops neat, and making sure pets are on their best behavior (or happily frolicking at the local "doggie daycare" center) can play a key role in winning over interested buyers and successfully selling your home!





    Posted by Thomas Murphy on 7/19/2020

    If you're ready to pursue your dream house, it generally is a good idea to enter the real estate sector with an open mind. In fact, there are many benefits to keeping your options open as you search for your ideal residence, and these benefits include:

    1. You may be able to discover a bargain.

    As you kick off your home search, it helps to pursue houses in a wide range of cities and towns. Doing so can help you separate your dream home must-haves from your wants. Also, this may enable you to find an affordable residence that matches or exceeds your expectations.

    There is no telling whether a real estate market will favor buyers or sellers. The housing sector fluctuates constantly, and a buyer's market today may morph into a seller's market tomorrow.

    Luckily, if you maintain an open approach to buying a house, you can remain patient as you search for your perfect residence. Perhaps most important, you can capitalize on homebuying opportunities as they become available and avoid the temptation to overspend on a house.

    2. You can move quickly to acquire your dream residence.

    With an open approach to the homebuying journey, you should have no trouble moving quickly to acquire your ideal residence. If the opportunity presents itself to buy a great house at a terrific price, you can submit an offer and proceed accordingly.

    Of course, you should always think ahead before you submit an offer on any house, at any time. If you put together a competitive offer on a residence, you may receive an instant "Yes" from a home seller. Then, you can seamlessly finalize your home purchase and move into your dream residence.

    3. You can minimize stress throughout the homebuying journey.

    Buying a home is a major decision, and as such, stress can be problematic throughout the homebuying journey. If you are open to new ideas as you pursue a home, however, you may be better equipped than ever before to purchase your perfect residence.

    Remember, stress may force a homebuyer to make rash decisions something that a homebuyer probably wants to avoid at all costs. But if you're willing to take a deep breath and step back from the homebuying cycle at times, you can look at the big picture. And as a result, you can remain calm, cool and collected as you consider all of your homebuying options.

    For those who are looking for extra help in their pursuit of the perfect home, it may be beneficial to hire a real estate agent too. This housing market professional can share details about a broad array of houses in cities and towns where you want to live. Plus, a real estate agent can keep you informed about new residences as they become available, help you submit offers on houses and much more.

    Make your homeownership dream come true take an open approach to the homebuying journey, and you may be able to accomplish your homebuying goal faster than ever before.




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    Posted by Thomas Murphy on 7/12/2020

    You may be ready to sell your home. However, before you add your residence to the real estate market, you should consider involving your neighbors in the home selling process.

    There are many quick, easy ways to connect with your neighbors and ensure they can help you sell your house, including:

    1. Meet Face-to-Face with Your Neighbors

    Although you've enjoyed many wonderful years in your neighborhood, you may determine that now is a good time to relocate. As such, you should meet with your neighbors to share the news.

    A face-to-face meeting with a neighbor usually is a good idea. At this time, you can provide details about your future plans and respond to your neighbor's concerns or questions as well.

    Plus, you can ask your neighbor if he or she knows anyone who may be interested in your home. And if your neighbor answers, "Yes," encourage him or her to share the news that your house will soon be available.

    2. Provide Neighbors with a Copy of Your Home Listing

    Ultimately, you'll want to provide your neighbors with as much information about your home as possible. By doing so, you can make it simple for your neighbors to keep colleagues, family members and friends up to date about your residence.

    If an online home listing is available, feel free to share a link to the listing via email or social media. Then, your neighbors can copy and paste the link to the listing to share it with anyone they choose.

    Also, if your neighbors prefer a paper copy of your home listing, you should be able to provide them with a print-out that outlines your house's features. Be ready to provide paper copies of your home listing to your neighbors at any time, and you can boost your chances of selling your home quickly.

    3. Be Available to Respond to Home Selling Concerns and Questions

    After you share details about your home with neighbors, it may be only a matter of time before your residence sells. Meanwhile, neighbors may return to you with additional concerns and questions about your residence.

    Be available to your neighbors via phone call, text and email. This will ensure you can provide your neighbors with the home information they request, any time they need it.

    Lastly, it is important to remember that home sellers should try to do everything they can to promote their residences to the right groups of homebuyers. If you collaborate with a real estate agent, you can improve your chances of connecting with the right homebuyers, regardless of the current housing market's conditions.

    A real estate agent will learn about your home selling goals and work with you to ensure you can achieve them. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will set up home showings and open houses and respond to your home selling concerns and queries to guarantee you are fully supported throughout the home selling journey.

    Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you should have no trouble stirring up plenty of interest in your residence.





    Posted by Thomas Murphy on 7/5/2020

    Image by Hermann Schmider from Pixabay

    Are you planning to sell your home soon? Then this is the time to take care of those home improvements that will make your home more attractive to buyers. As a homeowner who's been through the sale process before, you know how important it is to make a good impression on buyers. What you may not know is which improvements deliver the best bang for the buck. The following home improvements can help you boost the value of your home and make your home more appealing to buyers. 

    Repair Any Deferred Maintenance

    Buyers shy away from homes with deferred maintenance. Whether you've let the little things slide, like broken door knobs and cracked windows, or your home needs a major repair like an all-new roof, take care of your deferred maintenance. Tell your agent about major repairs after they're finished, so your agent can mention those repairs in the listing.

    Perform a High ROI Remodel or Installation

    Some of the highest ROI remodels include:

  • Deck installation: 70%
  • Small kitchen remodel: 80%
  • Bathroom addition: 80%
  • The type of high ROI home improvement that's right for your home depends in part on the condition of your property. Work with a real estate professional to find out which type of remodel, renovation or addition is right for your property. 

    Spruce Up the Landscaping

    Curb appeal is crucial, because some buyers form their opinions the minute they pull up to the property. Buyers like a well-maintained, attractive yard with basic features like green grass, blooming flowers and healthy shrubs. Get rid of any dead or dying bushes or flowers, water your grass sufficiently so it's green when buyers see your home, and keep it well-trimmed. 

    Apply a Fresh Coat of Paint

    Paint is a low-cost, easy home improvement that can make your home look clean, fresh and newly decorated. Identify rooms in your home that are missing a sense of flair or beauty and paint the walls. You'd be amazed at how easily the space can be transformed. Choose colors that are neutral, like beige or gray. These colors are very popular and appeal to many home buyers. Avoid painting any space in your home in a bright color that will distract home buyers.




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