2020 Homebuyer Preferences

With interest rates at an all time low, it’s no surprise that there’s a surplus of buyers right now! Whether you’re house hunting, or you’ve been waiting on the perfect time to sell your place the Yancey Realty team would love to assist with your real estate needs! Give us a call today at 704-467-8877 to get started!

What Do First-Time Homeowners Want?

As a first-time homebuyer, it’s understandable that you would be very selective about the home you purchase. This is likely the largest financial investment you’ve made in your life so far so you want to ensure you’re going to get exactly what you want. That’s why, as a seller, it’s important to be aware of the most desirable features for buyers in today’s market. Check out five below.

  • Location. This one should come as no surprise. Location has always been key. Buyers are looking for low crime rates and nearby stores. Families with young children are looking for great schools and parks nearby. Young professionals are looking for easy access to work, restaurants, and nightlife.
  • Extra storage. A garage with floor space and shelves. An extra bedroom that can be converted. A backyard shed. Or a closet under the stairs. Adequate storage space is highly sought after. Updated kitchen and bathroom. Many buyers are in the market for high-end, modern appliances, finishes, countertops, and more in their kitchens and bathrooms.
  • Large patio or backyard. This feature may make or break a first homeowner’s decision to purchase. Many times, these buyers are coming from smaller living spaces like apartments and are looking for a place to entertain guests, enjoy the fresh air, and play with kids or pets.

  • Smart appliances. These have been on the rise for years and aren’t going away anytime soon. Homeowners are looking for these devices to help them save money on energy, connect with friends and family, secure their home, and add convenience.

 

Top Tips For Disinfecting Your Home

In the current world we live in, it’s incredibly important to put a focus on finding strategies to keep ourselves and our families safe and healthy. Although our homes should be our safe place, germs and bacteria can be carried in daily. Here are a few tips to rid your home of those contaminants.

  • Clean regularly touched surfaces. Although washing your hands regularly is a great habit, there is still a chance germs can be transferred to surfaces. Disinfect areas that are touched regularly, like handles, light switches, tables, and countertops, with a microfiber cloth dipped in hot water and all-purpose cleaner.
  • Wash dishes the right way. If you use a dishwasher, make sure the water temperature is set to 140 degrees Fahrenheit and use detergent that lists chlorine bleach as an ingredient.
  • Disinfect soft surfaces in the living room. Although disinfecting tables, light switches, and lamps is a great starting place, be sure to focus on pillows, couches, and chairs too. Purchase a disinfecting spray that is meant for fabrics to kill lingering bacteria and read and follow the instructions carefully to ensure it is effective.
  • Don’t forget your devices. Sanitizing TV remotes, video game controllers, computer keyboards and mice, and cellphones is crucial. Use disinfecting wipes to carefully sanitize all surfaces and buttons or, if you don’t have wipes, spray disinfectant on a paper towel then wipe the device.
  • Properly sanitize your laundry. One of the easiest ways bacteria travels into the home is on clothing. Set your washing machine either to the sanitize setting, or if not applicable, the warmest water temperature and use a laundry sanitizer.

What You Need To Know About Refinancing Your Mortgage

Refinancing your mortgage can have many financial benefits when done at the right time in the right way. Here’s what you need to know about this type of transaction.

What is refinancing your mortgage?

When you refinance your loan, you essentially pay off your remaining mortgage with funds from a new one. The process is fairly simple and similar to when you applied for your initial mortgage. You’ll gather quotes from multiple lenders, file an application, gather and provide financial documentation, like paystubs, bank statements, etc., then close like you did when you first purchased.

Why should you refinance?

Refinancing your home loan is an option available to most homeowners. This decision can allow a homeowner to reduce their monthly mortgage payments, negotiate a shorter payment term, switch to a different type of loan, cash out on home equity, and consolidate debt.

When should you refinance?

Timing is key when it comes to refinancing your home. The best time to take this step is when interest rates drop lower than the rate you closed at. Another good time to consider refinancing is if your current credit score could allow you to qualify for better interest rates than your time of purchase.

What are the costs to refinance?

Unfortunately, refinancing isn’t free. Your refinanced mortgage will come with similar fees to your original, such as appraisal, title insurance, closing costs, and more. Because of this, when deciding to refinance, make sure the money saved outweighs the fees your will incur.

The Best Investment for the Past 7 Years According to Americans Is…

Real estate continues to beat out stocks, savings accounts & gold as the best long term investment among Americans for the past 7 years! 🤯⁣

Whether you’re looking for an investment property, a first home, or your next home, the Yancey Realty team is here to help! ⁣

Give us a call today at 704-467-8877 to start your search!

 

Necessary Tips For New Gardeners

If you are looking to cultivate your green thumb and try your hand at your first garden, then below are some beginner tips just for you!

Track the sun. Before you choose your plot of land, spend a few days monitoring which areas receive the most sunlight during the course of the day. Most edible plants require at least 6 to 8 hours of sun a day, so after watching how sunlight travels through your yard, you will be able to pick the best place for your garden.

Familiarize yourself with your soil. Do you have soil that is clay based or sand based? Does is drain quickly or slowly? Does it require additional nutrients? By evaluating your existing soil using a soil test kit, you can determine what you need to add or adjust to make sure it is high in nutrients and drains well for optimal gardening. It is best to test your soil in early spring before you plant or after the harvest in fall.

Choose the right plants. Not only do you want to select plants that grow best in your climate, but you also may want to try your hand at some of the easier ones to maintain before expanding to others. Some easy-to-grow plants include geraniums, marigolds, sunflowers, daylilies, cucumbers, lettuce, and tomatoes.

Time your watering carefully. The frequency in which you water your garden depends on several factors: age of the plant, type of soil, humidity, rainfall, sun, wind, and more. Make sure to do your research and create a watering schedule for yourself to ensure the longevity of your plants.

 

Quick Tips To Sell Home Items Online

Whether you are looking to make more room in your home or planning to redecorate, selling some of your lightly used home items is a great way to make a few bucks. Below are some tips to sell your items quickly and safely online.

Choose the Right Site

There are numerous reputable websites to sell your home items and many that come with a mobile app for your Android or iOS device. Some popular sites include Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, eBay, Mercari, OfferUp, and Poshmark.

 

Represent Your Item in the Best Light

To catch the eye of potential buyers, clean the item thoroughly and do any paint touch-ups or repairs that are needed. Then take a series of well-lit, high-quality photos. Make sure you are capturing every angle of the item and inside any drawers or cupboards. If the item’s brand holds any weight, you may want to take a close up shot of that logo or name plate on the item. Pair your scroll-stopping photos with a detailed description that covers the dimensions, color, brand, damages, and any other pertinent information.

Practice Safe Delivery

Depending on the site you are using, it may have built-in shipping options available with that cost worked into the price. However, if you choose to ship the item yourself, you may want to add on a few dollars to the listed price to account for packaging and shipping. If you are doing an in-person handoff, we recommend meeting in a public place in the daylight instead of having the buyer come to your home or place of work.

COVID-19 Update: North Carolina to Remain in Phase 2, Additional Restrictions

*Joe Thompson from Black Slaughter & Black guest wrote this blog entry*

NC Governor Roy Cooper announced today, June 24, that on Friday, June 26 the State will NOT move to a “Phase 3” with regards to coronavirus restrictions. North Carolina will instead remain in Phase 2 for at least an additional 3 weeks as a result of failing to meet certain key benchmarks. In addition, new face mask requirements have been added.

Here are some highlights for North Carolina’s homeowner and condominium associations:

  • Phase 2 restrictions will remain in place through at least 5 pm on July 17, 2020.
  • Restrictions on gatherings remain in place. Executive Order #141 issued on May 20 limits indoor gatherings to ten (10) people and outdoor gatherings to twenty-five (25) people. The outdoor “mass gathering” limit of twenty-five (25) people also applies to groups of people that may gather together in a park and on a beach or trail. Such restrictions should be considered with regards to any membership or board in-person meetings.
  • Executive Order #136 provided for the possibility of remote communication (i.e., telephonic, Zoom, GoToMeeting) membership meetings. However, that order expired yesterday, June 23, 2020.
  • Requirements on pools remain in place. See Pools in Phase 2: Requirements for Reopening NC HOA/Condo Pools.
  • Face coverings will be mandatory in numerous settings where individuals will be within six (6) feet of another person, including retail businesses, restaurants, personal care/grooming/tattoo businesses, child care facilities/day camps, state government, certain high-density occupations, processing plants, etc. Citations are only to the business, and not to individual workers, customers or patrons. NOTE: None of the listed required locations include association property or common area, such as pools. However, many cities and counties have adopted more broad face covering requirements, and those must also be followed. In addition, some associations have adopted and enforce face covering requirements on the common elements, such as common entry areas, elevators, etc. Questions about a specific association should be addressed to a community association attorney,

Executive Order #147 will take effect on Friday, June 26 at 5 pm. The entire order can be found at Extension of Phase 2 Order and New Measures to Save Lives in the COVID-19 Pandemic.

 

If you have questions about new state regulations or using/opening amenities in your community, contact one of the attorneys at any of our four offices.

If you’d like to speak with Joseph about title fraud, you can reach him at 704.970.1593 or via email at JThompson@LawFirmCarolinas.com.

You can find more information about Black Slaughter & Black by clicking here!

 

Take 5: Revamp Your Porch

The exterior of your home reflects your individual style just as much as the interior. If you feel the need to give your porch a new look and feel, then check out the ideas below.

Plants. Bridge the gap between your front yard and porch area by introducing some natural elements. Install hanging planters on the roof of the porch and select beautiful greenery that trails down or add some flower boxes along the railings and plant colorful flowers or unique succulents.

Color. Adding a pop of color can really liven up your porch. Try painting the ceiling, railing, or front door or, if you aren’t ready for a larger DIY project yet, consider purchasing some brightly colored pillows or throws for your patio furniture or large ceramic pots.

Lighting. Changing up your lighting on your porch can make a huge difference. Start small by wrapping lights around your railing or hanging café lights across the ceiling. If you’re interested in a larger project, you can install a pendant light, rustic lanterns, decorative wall lights, or sconces.

House number. One of the easiest updates you can make to your porch area is switching out your house numbers. Some options to consider are modern, metal numbers, colored numbers that match your front door, a custom stained-glass plate, or a small mounted planter box with the numbers fixed to the front.

Porch drapes. Porch drapes are easy to install and are the perfect way to give your porch a little privacy and shade. Keep it simple with a nice white linen or spice it up with a color or pattern.