How to Choose the Best Home Interior Design Company

When searching for a home interior design company, a number of factors would need to be looked at before making the decision. Choosing the best team of experts is essential if you are to have a living space that matches your requirements and desires perfectly.

At the outset you should put together a list of possible firms. There should be a selection of interior designers operating in your locality who you could consider hiring. Use the resources available online to short list four to six names. Spend time browsing the websites of the designers in question, this should allow you to develop an idea as whether their services would be suitable.

It would be useful if you could peruse the portfolios of the firms that you have short-listed. If the company is professional, they should offer a web page that contains information pertaining to their past projects. Search for a company that is familiar with a wide range of elements and themes. It would be worthwhile finding a portfolio that contains examples of styles similar to what you would like to use in your own home.

Not all design firms specialize in residential work, there are those that focus primarily on corporate projects. Putting together a warm home decor is a different concept than creating a productive work environment. If the designers do not have a portfolio to show, take your money elsewhere.

It requires qualifications, certification, and training to become an adept interior designer. Steer clear of any designer that does not hold the right certification and qualifications. Spend a small amount of time researching the companies‘ backgrounds so as to make an informed choice.

Never undervalue the importance of having an excellent rapport with the professionals that are to be hired. They should be happy for you to give an input and make suggestions. It is important that your ideas are taken seriously. Before you sign a contract, make sure you are clear on the line of communication which can be followed when you want to discuss the project and any changes.

Not every talented interior designer works for the large companies. There are accomplished professionals who are self employed and work from their own home. Do not be overly focused on the cost of the project, a cheap quote may end up with work being carried out that is of a poor standard and below your personal expectations.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Real Estate Photography Tips for Beginners

Even with the recession, real estate is a billion dollar market in all the major developed and developing countries. What do you think is the first thing people see when scouting around to buy property? The answer would be the pictures of the property in question. Human beings respond better to visual stimulation.

Therefore, quality and interesting photography matters a lot and if you are a property photographer you should take it seriously. Why? Because your livelihood depends on it! If you are trying to sell real estate photographs to realtors and they are not worth the dollars the realtor pays, your effort goes to waste.

Real Estate Photography Tip #1: Capturing the Best Images

The intention is to sell the property so your photography should definitely be appealing to the people who view them. Try to highlight the best features of the house; the features that potential buyers will like to see matter the most. The photography also depends on the nature of the property – residential or commercial. Actually the pictures should showcase your talent and skill. While searching for realtors to see the images, sometimes you need to provide samples so capturing the best of images will greatly help to clinch the deal.

Real Estate Photography Tip #2: Selling the Images

To earn a living in this type of photography professionally, give yourself 1-2 years of time for creating a solid base of clients. You can set up a professional website with your portfolio, current projects (if any), specialization, skills, and lots of high-definition clear pictures for prospective buyers to see. Of course, you need to do a lot of marketing for getting the clients. Begin by scouting the area you are living in and any others that you have easy access to. Contact the realtors in the area, show them sample images and if luck is on your side, you will land your first deal soon!

Real Estate Photography Tip #3: Getting High Profile Clients

Getting high profile realtor clients who will buy your pictures is not easy because there are always better photographers around you and also you lack experience in the beginning. So after working for a year or two with local realtors, think of migrating towards getting high profile clients. The pay rate is definitely higher but you need to have real skill and knowledge to get an edge over others. Question yourself – what is there in you that sets you apart from other real estate photographers? Once you answer this, build on that aspect for better projects.

Of course, getting the high profile clientele is not easy. Be prepared for sample photo shoots as part of a personalized sales pitch.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

For Sale By Owner – You Can Do It!

Need to sell your home? In today’s market „for sale by owner“ may be the best way to sell. Trust me, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to be successful at selling your own home. The information in this article may provide you with in-site you may not have had before. You can do it yourself!

Prepare your home for buyers. New paint helps and is not expensive. Make sure it is clean, clean, clean. Most important and most over looked by sellers, you need to get rid of the clutter, inside and out. Less is more! Rent a storage facility or have a garage sale but get rid of the clutter. Less furniture makes a room look larger. Over stuffed closest are a real turn off to buyers who ALL want plenty of storage space. Get rid of all the nick knacks.

We all know how important curb appeal is. Get those yards cleaned up, front and back! Remember, an appraisal has pictures of the back yard as well as the front. I know this sounds silly but a junky back yard tells an underwriter a lot about your home’s interior and maintenance routine. A buyer may over look it but the appraiser and lender do not.

Next, get a home inspection performed. An inspector will check the structure and systems in your home. He may find things you are not aware of. It is better to find and repair these issues before the buyer’s inspector does.

Make sure you price it right. Spend the money to get a professional appraisal performed by a HUD approved appraiser. Do not rely on a real estate agent’s market analysis. These are seldom accurate and many times an agent will just blow smoke by telling you what they think you want to hear.

Go sit down with your local mortgage broker. He has a wealth of knowledge you need to take advantage of. Most mortgage brokers have free FSBO programs that will help you immensely. It is important that you know what your costs will be based on the type of loan the buyer acquires. Did you know that a VA loan could cost you much more in closing costs PLUS home repairs that probably are not required by other loans? Will your home qualify for a FHA loan without making very costly repairs? If you are on a tight budget and need every possible dime out of the sale of your home you may want to negotiate in the contract that the buyer gets conventional financing.

A mortgage broker will also teach you the critical areas you need to watch in the sales contract. He may even provide you with blank contracts and other state mandatory disclosures required when you sell your home. Most brokers will even create your home flyer and more important, your financing options flyer. Perspective buyers want to know two things: how much will my payments be, and how much money do I need to pay down plus closing cost.

You should list your home on a „For Sale By Owner“ web site. I want to caution you here. A lot of these sites try to charge you a lot of money for things that do not/will not help sell your home. Homebuyers DO NOT spend hours searching „For Sale By Owner“ web sites. They work with real estate agents, read the papers, and drive on the streets in the neighborhoods they want to live in.

The advantage you get by listing your home on the Internet is that you put the URL in your newspaper ads, your flyers, and on your yard sign. Then when a buyer drives by your house or sees your ad they can go on the Internet and see pictures, amenities, and the price. If your house fits their needs and their budget, they will call you. If not, it is less of a bother for you. It can be very frustrating to let lookey-loo’s in your home week after week. Don’t you really only want truly interested buyers at your door? There are many free FSBO websites on the net. Check it out.

With all this said, the rest is just common sense. You Can Sell It Yourself!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Buying Property in the Cayman Islands

The Cayman Islands are made up of three islands Little Cayman, Cayman Brac and Grand Cayman. They are located in the Caribbean sea and are a British overseas territory. It is a fantastic location with great weather and for many reasons an ideal location to buy a home. Property for sale in the Cayman Islands has been popular amongst property investors not only because of its location but also because of the taxation system with no capital gains, no income tax and no inheritance tax – you can understand why!

The language is English with the Cayman Islands dollar (CI$) being the local currency however the US dollar is accepted everywhere. The government gathers its revenue by charging import duty which can be from 5% to 22% and particularly for cars anything from 29% to 100%.

The climate is typically Caribbean, the dry season is November to May and the wet season May to October.

If you are thinking of moving to and working in the Cayman Islands you need a work permit. You must apply for this before you arrive and you will need an offer of employment (the employer normally applies for this permit).

When you buy a property in the Cayman Islands you will be subject to the property transfer fee „Stamp Duty“ and this would be paid by the purchaser as part of the closing fees. This fee differs from location to location eg along the Seven Mile Beach it is 7.5% and the rest of the island is 5% and upwards. Once you have purchased a property then the title is recorded at the land registry office along with any mortgage (Charge) on the property. Solicitors fees are negotiable and tend to be around 1% of the purchase price.

According to a report by CIREBA (Cayman Islands Real Estate Brokers http://www.cireba.com ) property is on the increase and, in 2011, sales are up on those from 2010. In the September 2011 report it shows up to August 2011 property has seen an increase of 203% compared to the previous year. There has been CI$422 million in transfers up from CI$207million in 2010 and the figures are up on 2009 and 2008, but the actual number of transactions is down which means the high end property market is still good but the lower end is struggling.

Mortgages are available in the Cayman Islands and deposits are normally between 10-35%. There is no interest only mortgage available and you can ask to pay biweekly, which will reduce the interest payments and the term can be 20 to 35 years.

Property is available from Land, Condo’s or luxury villas with the higher prices in the Seven mile beach area, but if you buy to let then rental is also high in this area.

If you wish to buy a property in the Cayman Islands or any other country in the world then visit our web site http://www.online-property-sale.com or if you wish to sell a property then you can place a free property advert with us.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Advantages and Disadvantages to an MLS Search

MLS searches (or Multiple Listings Service) are based off the principle; „Help me sell my inventory and I’ll help you sell yours.“ It is a unique concept, though one not many other industries use. Real estate brokers acknowledge the advancements in technology once MLS searches became popular, and are willing to present the advantages and disadvantages of MLS queries to interested parties. The decision of utilizing this service is ultimately up to the potential buyer.

No For Sale By Owner (FSBO) Options

One of the big disadvantages to MLS searches is they do not include homes sold by the owner, unless the seller has negotiated a certain percentage of the commission to the realtors. If interested in FSBO’s, the buyer must search potential neighborhoods for FSBO signs and negotiate a price within their range. If the buyer does not know much about negotiating prices, or how much homes are worth, MLS queries still provide some contribution for comparison purposes. If excessive research is undesirable to the buyer, then MLS queries provide another benefit.

Less Research for the Buyer

Buying a home might already be considered a stressful process for some. MLS searches can cut down on some of that stress because it reduces the research the buyer must conduct. There are already so many other aspects a buyer must remember to look into, including the community, crime rate, demographics, school districts, job outlooks, among others. MLS queries place hundreds of homes from the participating brokers into one database, with hundreds of fields with which to search the properties. Knowledgeable brokers with years of experience determine these popular search fields; whereas if the buyer conducts the research by himself or herself, he or she may question whether the information they find is accurate.

The Internet Outdates MLS Queries

The younger generation might claim the Internet is called the „Information Highway“ for a reason. While it is true certain states have their MLS queries readily available on the Internet, not all states have this accessibility. It is also important to consider that information researched on one’s own time might not be as accurate as the MLS searches provided by real estate brokers.

A Trusting Community

As mentioned earlier, all MLS queries are based off the „You scratch my back, and I’ll scratch yours“ premise. In other words, there are no hidden agendas. All brokers participating in MLS queries are trying to provide the buyer with the greatest number of options. They keep the buyer’s requirements in mind and try to create satisfactory customers.

Ultimately, the decision to use MLS searches or to conduct the research on one’s own is up to the potential buyer.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

How Thousands of Our Clients Sold Their Homes Without Agents?

In the past, due to the lack of awareness about the home sale process, selling a home used to be a stressful task. The decision to sell a home can become a roller-coaster for the first-timers and if you have enough time and energy required to sell your home on your own there must be a thousand questions popping in your mind. Selling a house is a huge undertaking and probably the biggest transaction of your life. It’s easy to get swept off of your feet in the process of home selling and make mistakes that could leave you with remorse later. But thousands of people are doing it and once you know the process, it’s actually very doable. Preparing for what’s ahead will help you gain the most money at closing and keep your stress at bay. Fortunately, there are steps you can take before putting your home on the market to increase your chances of receiving a solid offer from a buyer. Homeowners who are wondering how to sell a house by owner should understand that it’s a learning process and isn’t something that people are doing every day.

Nowadays, you can sell a house without an agent by listing it on minustheagent.com.au. By adding a good description of your property and adding a few appropriate images, you can sell your home without an agent in an efficient manner. Minus The Agent also assists you through every step of the sales process and shares your listing on other leading websites in Australia such as domain.com.au, realestate.com.au, and many more. Minus The Agent also allows you to upload videos, a virtual tour, the floor plan, etc. of the property on the website so that the potential buyers can make a well-informed decision.

What does ‚Minus The Agent‘ do?


Minus The Agent puts you directly in touch with genuine buyers or tenants so that you can successfully sell or rent without the need of an agent. By listing your property on high-profile and high-visibility websites like domain.com.au, realestate.com.au, etc., Minus The Agent gets your property and put it on the market in front of thousands of potential buyers. Minus The Agent also provides end-to-end support with out and handy marketing tools so that the sellers have a smooth home selling process throughout.

Minus The Agent helps home sellers who opt ‚for sale by owner‘ list their properties on realestate.com.au, domain.com.au, homesales.com.au, and many more. Minus The Agent also provides on-going assistance to make the sale or leasing a stress-free process when you opt for sale by owner. Get the right valuation for your property now without paying the commission fee and save your money with Minus The Agent.

Why choose us?


User-friendly platform

Our website, minustheagent.com.au, is easy to navigate and allows you to take advantage of all our services. From listing your home for sale without an agent to closing the deal, our website guides you through the process and gives you tools to be your own agent so that you can present and sell your home confidently.

Diverse packages

Our packages are tailored according to your needs and offer you the tools that you need to successfully sell your home without an agent. You are in charge of your marketing and have 24/7 access to our system to update or make changes to your listing from any computer or mobile device.

Expert support

Our team consists of highly experienced professionals who can help and guide you at each and every step of the home selling process. Minus The Agent offer after hours‘ phone and email support 7 days a week, meaning we are there to deal with any inquiries you or your prospective buyers/tenants may have.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Real Estate in the Bahamas – How to Sell Your Island Property in a Down Market

The scenery is better and the gentle breezes coming off the ocean are second to none, but trying to sell real estate in the Bahamas can be just as challenging as other parts of the world when the real estate market is in a slump.

During these slumps, researching to find a qualified Realtor and taking special steps to market your real estate effectively can mean the difference between property that sells at a fair price in short order, and real estate that languishes on the market, said Rachel Pinder, Principal Broker of Island Living Real Estate in Nassau.

Brenda Knowles, a broker with Island Living Real Estate, suggests property owners ask a potential Realtor these questions when considering the best person for the job:

o How are you going to market the property?

o What is the history of your company?

o What is the background/Realtor experience of your agents?

o How long have they been in the business?

o What is the current market trend?

o Do you co-broke with other real estate agencies?

o What changes do I need to make to my property to make it competitive in the current market?

In short, sellers should find out how the Realtor intends to market their property, Knowles said. There are several marketing standards most Realtors employ when listing properties, so getting to the options that set one Realtor apart from all the others is paramount.

It is important to remember that the best marketing plan can only do so much; an owner should take the advice of their real estate agent to make their property look its best, Pinder said.

„It seems to go against common sense to put money into a home you’re trying to sell, but as many TV shows on the subject prove, you really can get a better price for your home by putting a little bit of money into making it appealing to a broad spectrum of potential home buyers,“ she said.

Here are some easy and relatively inexpensive tips:

o Make sure the house is freshly painted in neutral colors.

o Remove personal items, such as family photos.

o Make minor repairs- patch holes in walls, fix cracked tiles, replace cracked windows, etc.

o Get rid of clutter, inside and outside

o Clean, clean, clean

o Give your front entrance curb appeal by adding colorful flowers.

Another tip to remember is to price the property right.

„Don’t try to over-price your home in a down market,“ Pinder said. „It won’t sell.“

© 2007 Sinai Marketing and Island Living Real Estate. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Sinai Marketing is credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this article is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Selling Your House In A Down Economy

Challenging economic conditions means that the real estate market is ideal for buyers but a graveyard for sellers hoping for a good deal. The housing market in the United States is at its lowest ebb in almost three decades. The Mortgage Bankers Association states that in 2011, 8 million Americans were at least one month behind with their mortgage payments with 5 million of these homeowners two months behind. With huge numbers of houses up for the sale, prices are falling rapidly and sellers are caught in a trap. Below are some tips for selling your home in a down economy for a reasonable price.

Find A Great Realtor

Although you can try and sell the property yourself, it is asking an awful lot to list your house and do all the ground work without real knowledge of the industry. Despite the fact that a realtor will cost you from 3-6% of the selling price, their expertise could easily make up that difference. Find a local agency that’s familiar with your neighborhood including knowledge of comparable properties in the area, school systems etc. Check the realtor’s sales history over the last few years. You want a successful realtor that is not too busy to give your property his full attention.

Marketing Plan

Your real estate agent is responsible for producing a marketing plan but it is your duty to familiarize yourself with the plan as it’s an essential element of driving traffic and getting more people to view your home. Your property must be visible on top internet sites such as realtor.com. The best realtors have their own website so make sure your property is on display there too.

Preparation

This is your chance to shine. Walk through the home with your agent and he should be able to point out things that may turn off potential buyers. The good news is that preparation work for your home can be performed on a relatively tight budget. Take care of the property’s exterior first with neatly trimmed hedges and colorful flowers always a plus. Repair any bricks or handrails that are loose and also ensure the roof is in perfect condition.

Ensure all walls are painted and carpets are professionally cleaned. Remove all odors to leave a fresh smell and move around furniture to make the living space look as large as possible. If you can’t make your property look immaculate by the time the first viewers arrive, your home will remain unsold.

Price

Look at the active listings, pending listings and recent sold statistics of homes that can reasonably be compared to yours. However, be wary when looking at selling prices as those sales could have taken place a few months ago. Economic conditions can change very quickly so you may have to adjust prices to suit the existing market. Pay special attention to listed prices as this is your competition.

Once you have followed the above steps, you need to be quick to follow-up on inquiries. Your realtor generally handles follow-up activity including emails or phone calls from interested parties. Hopefully, you will receive plenty of interest thus enhancing the possibility of receiving a fair price for your home.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

FSBO – What You Should Know About Selling Your Own Home

The key to selling your home yourself is being properly prepared. If you aren’t, your home may remain on the market longer than you expect because you aren’t attracting and getting offers from qualified buyers. And this is where many homeowners become frustrated and start to think about giving up the dream of selling their homes themselves. However, some sellers are very successful at selling their own homes, and you can be one of them.

This report has been especially prepared to assist home sellers like yourself understand the process so you can sell your home quickly and for the price you want. To help you prepare, be aware of the following tips before deciding whether or not this is the right approach for you.

  1. Price your home correctly. Setting the correct asking price is critical. Setting the price too high can be as bad as setting it too low. Home prices are determined by fluctuations in the marketplace, and not by your emotional attachment to your home or what you think your home is worth. To establish a realistic price, compare the price, features, and condition of similar homes in both your neighbourhood and locations where similar homes have sold in the last few months. It is also important to be familiar with the terms of each potential sale. Terms are often as important as price in the current market. Work up a careful budget of your selling costs, and prepare a net proceeds sheet to determine an informed estimate of what you can expect to earn from the sale of your home. Prospective buyers may request a similar analysis of buying costs.
  2. Prepare your home for sale. First impressions are crucial. Ensure that your home makes a positive statement by carefully inspecting all details and viewing it, as objectively as possible, through the eyes of a buyer. Don’t ignore needed repairs and fix-ups: your prospective buyers certainly won’t! Your job is to make sure your home stands out favourably from the competition.
  3. Make sure you have all the necessary legal documentation. There are many important legal contracts and documents which you need to assemble, complete, and understand when selling your home. Below is a partial checklist of forms you will need for prospective buyers and for legal documentation.
    • Mortgage Payoff
    • Loan Application
    • Deposit Receipt
    • Property Profile Fact Sheet
    • Buyer’s Cost Sheet
    • Closing & Settlement
    • Personal Property
    • Exclusion List
    • Property Survey
    • Sellers Statement /Plot Plan of Representation
  4. Market Your Home Effectively. Beyond the sign on your lawn, you need to find effective ways to spread the word that your home is for sale. You can reach local buyers with ads in a newspaper, but you will reach just a small part of the possible market. Be sure to include buyers who may already be working with a realtor. To locate them, notify as many top agents as possible in your market in case their client’s criteria match what your home has to offer. Out-of-town buyers are an important target too, so create a strategy to reach them as well. Above all, be very customer service oriented and make it easy for pre-qualified buyers to view your home. That means making sure that someone is always available to answer the phone, respond promptly to messages, and be ready to give qualified prospects a tour of your home as quickly as possible.
  5. Remain objective when showing your home. Be sure to keep your emotions out of the sale of your home. The best way to do this during a showing is to remain physically in the background. If a prospective buyer says something negative about your home, you’re better off counter-balancing this point of view by calling attention to the positives instead of becoming defensive.
  6. Pre-qualify prospective buyers. Don’t waste time entertaining buyers who cannot afford to buy your home. Research their financial situation with respect to job security, salary, debts, liabilities and credit standing.
  7. Negotiate effectively and knowledgeably. There are a great many details that need to be resolved before a sale is considered final: price, terms, inspections, possession date, and buyer concerns and objections, to name a few. You must fully understand the contract you have drawn up so you can, in turn, explain the details and ramifications to the buyer, and make any necessary amendments to the sale. Have the contract you use thoroughly examined by your real estate attorney. Some real estate brokers may be willing to help you do this. While this is going on, work to maintain the buyer’s interest in your home so it doesn’t wane during negotiations.
  8. Know your buyer. Your objective during negotiations is to control the pace and set the duration. Try to determine what’s motivating potential buyers. Do they need to move quickly? Can they afford to pay the asking price for your home? Answering these questions will give you an advantage in the negotiations: you’ll know what you need to do to get what you want.
  9. Do not move out before you sell. Studies show that selling a vacant home is more difficult than selling one that is occupied. A vacant home looks forlorn, forgotten, and simply unappealing. And it could even cost you money. If you move out before you sell, you’re also letting prospective buyers know that you have a new home and are motivated to sell quickly. That can, of course, give the buyer an advantage at the negotiating table.
  10. Understand why you’re selling, but keep your reasons to yourself. Just as important as understanding your buyer is understanding yourself. Your reasons for selling can affect everything from how you price your home to how much time and money you invest in preparing it for sale. And knowing your motivation helps you determine your priorities: the money you walk away with, how long your property is on the market, or perhaps both. Different goals dictate different strategies. Someone who prefers to sell without a real estate agent to save the commission would indicate that money is a primary considerations (see „How to Assess Your Net Gain“ below). Whatever your reasons may be, it is very important to keep them to yourself so you don’t put yourself at a disadvantage during negotiations. If anyone asks why you’re selling, simply tell them that your housing needs have changed.

How to Assess Your Net Gain

To find out whether or not you’ll come out ahead by selling your home yourself, consider that most buyers use real estate agents because it doesn’t cost them anything (the seller pays the agent’s fee). Be cautious: buyers, investors, and speculators who seek out For Sale by Owner properties are usually in search of a bargain. Low-ball offers from these buyers will usually net you a lot less in the long run. Determine for yourself the following:

  1. You need to be as prepared as possible with your marketing, negotiations, evaluations, showings, and all legal matters.
  2. Calculate what it will cost you to effectively market your home and put together all the necessary materials, from the „For Sale“ sign to the contracts.
  3. What price will a buyer offer you as a For Sale by Owner, minus the costs identified in number 2 above? Is this net amount higher or lower than the price an experienced agent could net for you minus his/her commission?

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

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