Real Estate Information Archive


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8 Tips to Guide Your Home Search

by Mark Brace

1. Research before you look. Decide what features you most want to have in a home, what neighborhoods you prefer, and how much you’d be willing to spend each month for housing.

2. Be realistic. It’s OK to be picky, but don’t be unrealistic with your expectations. There’s no such thing as a perfect home. Use your list of priorities as a guide to evaluate each property.

3. Get your finances in order. Review your credit report and be sure you have enough money to cover your down payment and closing costs. Then, talk to a lender and get prequalified for a mortgage. This will save you the heartache later of falling in love with a house you can’t afford.

4. Don’t ask too many people for opinions. It will drive you crazy. Select one or two people to turn to if you feel you need a second opinion, but be ready to make the final decision on your own.

5. Decide your moving timeline. When is your lease up? Are you allowed to sublet? How tight is the rental market in your area? All of these factors will help you determine when you should move.

6. Think long term. Are you looking for a starter house with plans to move up in a few years, or do you hope to stay in this home for a longer period? This decision may dictate what type of home you’ll buy as well as the type of mortgage terms that will best suit you.

7. Insist on a home inspection. If possible, get a warranty from the seller to cover defects for one year.

8. Get help from a REALTOR®. Hire a real estate professional who specializes in buyer representation. Unlike a listing agent, whose first duty is to the seller, a buyer’s representative is working only for you. Buyer’s reps are usually paid out of the seller’s commission payment (free to the buyer, what a deal!).

Top 5 Reasons to Re-Carpet Your Home

by Mark Brace

There are 5 reasons why replacing the carpet in your home should be at the top of your to-do list when getting ready to sell. These reasons are listed below:

5) SMELL-You may be unaware of a smell because you're used to it, but these scents are usually very apparent when someone is walking in for the first time. Make your home smell new again. 

4) COMPETITION-With 1 buyer/10 homes on the market, they will always choose the home that demands no work or effort. Move-in condition is a HUGE selling point.

3)MONEY-Data shows that those who re-carpet are able to not only recover that cost, but actually make a profit from the project.

2)TIME-Homes that require buyers to paint or replace carpet sit on the market much longer than one that has been completely updated. If it's replaced up front, your home won't sit on the market.

1)The number one reason-again-is MONEY-Putting a little bit of money into prepping your home for sale will save you from buyers demanding a lower price for them to update!

Give your home a fighting chance to sell for the price it's worth in an extremely competitive market!

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Contact Information

Mark Brace, Realtor, ABR, GRI, CRS, SRES, e-PRO, A
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Michigan Real Estate
3000 East Beltline NE
Grand Rapids MI 49525
Direct: (616) 447-7025
Cell: (616) 540-7705
Fax: (616) 447-7025

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Michigan Real Estate is a full service, locally operated real estate brokerage company backed by the strength of a solid national and global brand. Our full service businesses include Residential, Commercial, Relocation, Mortgage, Insurance, Home Services and New Homes & Land. Our core values, service philosophy, cutting edge technology, and most importantly our people are what make us the leading real estate company in Michigan. We are committed to providing the highest quality real estate services possible and making each customer's experience one that surpasses their expectations.