Getting Ready to Sell Your Farmington Hills MI Home? Things Most People Forget to Do 

Getting Ready to Sell Your Farmington Hills MI Home? Things Most People Forget to Do 

Getting Ready to Sell Your Farmington Hills MI home? Here are 15 things you’ll want to do before showing your home to potential buyers, that many sellers forget to do.

Congratulations – you’ve decided to sell your Farmington Hills MI home. You’ve lined up a qualified real estate agent and you’ve started on your lists of small repairs. However, before you put your home on the market and have your first open house, there are a few things you’ll want to do first that require little effort and money. The simple home staging tips (most of which are totally free) listed below will help you get your home ready to show and sell faster for more money: 

1. Declutter and organize 

One thing you should definitely expect during an open house or home showing is for potential buyers to look in your closets, kitchen drawers, and cabinets. Homebuyers will be asking themselves how their own things are going to fit as they walk through your home. That is why you want to declutter and organize before showing your home. If your closets are stuffed full, you have a lot stored under the beds, and most surfaces in your home are cluttered, now’s the time to go through everything.

Donate whatever items you haven’t used in a year. Give things away to family and friends. Have a garage sale. Items such as family heirlooms, pictures, keepsakes, and personal memorabilia can all be stored away for the time being. The fewer things you have inside, the bigger your home will look and feel. Start by decluttering your closets, cabinets, and drawers and keep only enough belongings in each to really show off the potential space your home has to offer. Think of it as staging your storage areas.  

2. Straighten the pantry 

Pantries sell homes. Make yours appear roomier by straightening the shelves, organizing and grouping like items, organizing with bins, throwing out expired food, sweeping and mopping the floor, wiping down the shelves, and repainting and lining the shelves with fresh liner, if needed.  If you are using the floor for extra storage, clear it. You want the pantry to appear as large as possible to potential buyers.   

3. Empty the kitchen sink 

Nothing is more off-putting than a sink filled with dirty dishes. Make sure to always have a clean and empty sink by emptying the dishwasher in the morning. That way, every time you or a family member uses a dish, it can be rinsed off and immediately put into the dishwasher. This will prevent you from having to worry about doing a load of dishes last minute. Dry your sink using a damp towel when you are finished rinsing dishes and it will shine like new and impress potential buyers.  

4. Dump the kitchen trash 

This might seem simple, but don’t forget to take out the kitchen trash before a showing. You can even keep your trash bin in your garage while your home is for sale. It might be a bit inconvenient, but it will keep smelly trash out of the house. It will also be easy to grab and throw away in the big trash can on your way out.

5. Get rid of the dust 

Dust collects everywhere in our homes, especially in those hard-to-reach high places. Pay attention to the corners of rooms. Knock the spider webs down with a broom. Ceiling fans love to collect dust. Invest in an extra-long ceiling fan duster. Make sure the fan blades are dust-free. Blinds are another item that collects dust. Make sure you clean those too. Try using an old sock over your hand while wiping across each slat, starting at the top.

6. Clean the floors & carpet 

Be sure to vacuum carpets and rugs and sweep underneath furniture. One of the first things potential homebuyers look at when entering a new home is the floors, so make sure yours look their best. If your carpet is dirty, stained, or has a funky smell, be sure to get it professionally cleaned before you start showing your home to potential buyers.

7. Replace light bulbs

You want your house to look its brightest when homebuyers are touring it and replacing old burnt-out light bulbs is one of the easiest ways to achieve brightness.  Also, don’t forget to walk around the outside of your house to make sure all the lights around the exterior are working as well.

Depending on the time of year, open house or home tours could happen when the sun is going down or when it’s already dark. Make sure all your light bulbs are the same color inside as well as outside. A soft-white light LED bulb can create a bright but welcoming environment for new homebuyers.

8. Focus on the details: plants, mirrors, rugs & flowers

You may feel like spending a lot of time and money on your house is pointless because you’re just going to sell it anyway. However, the more you appeal to the majority of homebuyers, the more likely your house will sell faster and for more money.

Focus on the details. Nothing breathes life into a room more than a little greenery. A potted tree can work wonders in a living room. For smaller areas. think of smaller plants like a few potted herbs in the kitchen or a miniature ivy plant placed on the fireplace mantel.

Mirrors can be used to make small spaces appear larger as they create the illusion of depth. Mirrors also work great in darker rooms as they can reflect light deep into areas of a room that may not get an abundance of natural light.

Also, consider adding character to various spaces in your home with accent rugs. Just make sure the rug doesn’t take over and become the main focal point. A vase of fresh flowers can bring color into your home and make it feel more inviting to potential buyers. 

9. Paint: baseboards, crown molding, trim & door frames

It’s fairly common knowledge that potential homebuyers want to be able to picture themselves and their belongings in your space when looking at homes. So, if you happen to have a chartreuse accent wall, you’ll probably want to paint over it with a more neutral color.

Also, pay attention to the baseboards and crown molding. Your crown molding may just need some cleaning and a few touch-ups, whereas your baseboards have likely seen a lot more traffic, especially if you have kids. Try cleaning the baseboards with dish soap and water first. If they are still marked and scuffed up beyond that, you’ll most likely need to paint. 

Trim and door frames take a huge beating, especially if you have kids. Buy a gallon of trim paint and invest an afternoon touching up all the trim and door frames in your entire house. Paint will make everything look clean and brand new – you’ll be amazed at the difference.

10. Make sure your home smells inviting

Household odors will be the first thing potential buyers notice when they enter your home and can be a deal breaker. Deep cleaning your home can do wonders. If you don’t have time to do it yourself, hire a professional house cleaning service. 

Along with a really good cleaning, you can also use air freshener sprays, plug-in wax warmers, or even candles while showing your home. Some sellers go all out and bake  cookies before a showing. Whatever you do, make sure your home smells good.

11. Clean glass windows & doors 

You want to make your house shine inside and out. Windows and doors bring light in and can be a huge plus to a potential buyer. Make sure all your windows are clean (even the window sills, which collect dirt and dust. Before a showing, quickly clean the high traffic areas in your home like the back door.  

12. Clean the light switches and doorknobs 

Look around your home and you’ll probably find a few fingerprints and smudges, especially around light switches and doorknobs. Use a damp rag and a little cleaner to clean and polish all these areas. Be sure to address any light switches that are near the kitchen sink disposal, in the bathrooms, your kids’ rooms, and by the garage door. 

13. Clean and stock the bathrooms 

You want your bathrooms to be super clean. Take nick-knacks off the sink and counters. Be sure the toilet is flushed and close all the toilet lids. Also, make sure you have a fresh toilet paper roll in your bathroom; It just makes it look better to be fully stocked. Add fresh towels and make sure the bathroom garbage cans are empty.

14. Declutter and clean the garage 

Declutter the garage before showing your home. A cramped garage full of stuff can be a huge turn-off to potential buyers. A clean, well-organized, and freshly painted garage looks a lot more spacious and could actually turn out to be a huge selling point. 

15. Enhance your home’s curb appeal  

Ultimately, your outdoor space can be just as important as what your home has to offer on the inside. Enhancing your home’s curb appeal is one of the most impactful things you can do to create a great first impression and get potential buyers to have a look inside.

Be sure to remove any toys, bicycles, lawn furniture, equipment, etc. visible from the street. In addition, simple enhancements such as placing potted plants on your front porch, giving your front door a new coat of paint, or adding fresh bark around the base of your hedges and trees can go a long way to enhancing your home’s curb appeal.  

The takeaway

When selling your Farmington Hills MI home, decide on a local REALTOR® to work with early in the process and take advantage of their expertise and resources. You want a qualified agent who specializes in your area as every market is different. Then research together with your REALTOR® what comparable properties are selling for in your neighborhood to better understand what your home needs to make it stand out above the rest.

Keep in mind that you are not obligated to sell a perfect house. An experienced Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® can help you prioritize where to spend time and energy that will give you the best return.

Partner with Top-Rated Farmington Hills REALTOR® -Tom Gilliam

Whether you are interested in buying a home in the area or selling your Farmington Hills MI home, take advantage of Tom’s 17-plus years of experience as a top-rated Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®. For buyers, Tom will help you find the perfect home for your lifestyle needs in the right neighborhood. For sellers, Tom will get your home sold fast and for the most money.

He will look out for your best interests, advocate for you, negotiate on your behalf, and go the distance to ensure the best results possible. Get the home buying or selling process started today by calling Tom Gilliam directly at (248) 790-5594 or by email.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578 

Selling Your Farmington Hills MI Home? Pricing it Right is Key 

Selling Your Farmington Hills MI Home? Pricing it Right is Key 

Selling Your Farmington Hills MI Home? Pricing it Right is Key 

Pricing your home correctly can be the single most important factor when you’re selling your Farmington Hills MI Home. In today’s market, high buyer demand and fewer homes make it an optimal time to sell for those who are ready to do so. Many homes on the market are selling above the asking price at a record rate. According to a recent Realtors Confidence Index Survey from the National Association of Realtors (NAR):

  • Homes typically sell within 17 days (compared to 26 days one year ago).
  • The average home sold has 5 offers to pick from 
  • 54% of offers are over the asking price 

You can add about 10 percent to a comparable sale in a sellers’ market since inventory is limited and buyers are competing for fewer homes, according to Zillow. It’s also common for homes to sell for more than 100% of the list price in a seller’s market. 

Setting the right asking price

In a hot sellers’ market, it may be tempting to price your Farmington Hills MI home on the high side to capitalize on this trend, but a higher asking price doesn’t mean you’re going to cash in big on the sale.  Setting a higher price is likely to deter potential buyers, cause your home to sit on the market longer (never a good thing), and require a price drop that may cause prospective buyers to question why.

Instead, focus on setting the right price from the start by pricing your house based on its current condition and similar homes that have recently sold in your neighborhood or area. Review expired listings from your area to gain insights on pricing your home to sell. Compare original list prices of recently sold homes with their final sale prices. Did it take many price cuts to get a sale? Perhaps it was overpriced, to begin with?

By setting the right asking price, you will increase your home’s visibility, which in turn drives more buyers to your front door. The more buyers that are interested in your home, the more likely you’ll have a multi-offer scenario. When multiple buyers compete for your house, that sets you up for a bidding war and a bigger return. 

Don’t let your asking price lump you in with the competition

Price banding is the practice of looking over current inventory in your neighborhood and finding a less crowded price point. Prices tend to get bunched up as sellers try to price their homes competitively. For example, if there are 3 homes in your neighborhood that are priced between $284,000 and $286,000, and the next set of homes start at $290,000 and up, you should take advantage of the wide-open $280,000 price band. Once you know your home’s value and have a price range in mind, it’s time to nail down the final “list” price.

Price for common online search ranges

Consider the price range your home will fall into on popular online real estate websites. Most buyers have a price range they are considering or can afford. A buyer looking at homes in the $380,000 to $400,000 range will likely not see your home if it’s listed at $405,000. But, if you choose a home listing price of $399,999, it’ll show up in their search results, and they just might end up being your buyer. While this scenario happens frequently, many savvy agents will set up search parameters for their buyers to include properties listed a little bit more above their price ceiling.

Knowing how flexible home prices can be, buyers should be made aware of properties that could be a good match for them, even if those homes are above (but within a reasonable range of) what they want to pay.  An experienced Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® can help you set a price that’s realistic and obtainable.

They can provide you with a CMA, which is a compilation of recent sales from your area. It takes into consideration home details, days on the market, and final sale price. Real estate agents are used to providing comps to potential clients, and may not even need to step foot in your home.  

Handling a bidding war

Bidding wars most often happen when the housing market has limited inventory and when there is more than one potential buyer making an offer on a home. These buyers end up competing to become the new owner of the property by increasing the price of their offer, often pushing the price higher than the original property value. 

A badly managed bidding war can end in disappointment for the seller if the potential buyers feel misled or used. No one wants their offer to be shopped around. Keep in mind that even if one party is offering you more money than another, it might not be the best offer. Money is money, but a cash offer is generally stronger than an offer that comes with financing.

An offer that includes a mortgage will take longer to close than a cash deal, and if the buyers’ financial profile is at all questionable, there’s a chance they might not secure their financing. It’s possible that the second-highest bidder might have a more straightforward and simple financial profile, and thus be more of a slam dunk to make it to the closing table.

Leave the door open with your backups. In a competitive bidding situation, buyers can become overly enthusiastic, get caught up in the moment, and bid above their comfort level. They may even walk away due to buyer’s remorse or a reassessment of value while the contract is being drawn up.  

The takeaway

Find the right list price for your home by working with a Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® who’s an expert in your area. By using their comparative market analysis, you can price your home to sell fast and for more money. In a sellers’ market, where bidding wars are common, properly handling the process is paramount and an experienced real estate agent should be able to guide you.

Partner with REMAX Farmington Hills REALTOR® -Tom Gilliam

Whether you are interested in buying a home in the area or selling your Farmington Hills MI home, take advantage of Tom’s 17-plus years of experience as a top-rated RE/MAX Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®. For buyers, Tom will help you find the perfect home for your lifestyle needs in the right neighborhood. For sellers, Tom will get your home sold fast for the best price. 

Tom will look out for your best interests, advocate for you, negotiate on your behalf, and do whatever it takes to ensure a smooth and successful transaction. Get the process started today by calling Tom directly at (248) 790-5594 or get in touch by email.

  

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578 

Why You Need A Top-rated RE/MAX Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®

Why You Need A Top-rated RE/MAX Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®

Why You Need A Top-rated RE/MAX Farmington Hills REALTOR®: Whether you are a first-time buyer or a seasoned veteran, buying a home in Farmington Hills MI can be one of the most exciting experiences of your life. It can also be a stressful undertaking. Fortunately, there are qualified real estate agents out there who can help you navigate the challenges of buying a home and help eliminate a lot of the stress. Overall, you’ll want to look for a REALTOR® and company you feel comfortable with and trust. Selecting the right one can make the difference between finding the right home for your lifestyle needs quickly and securing an offer or searching unsuccessfully for months.  

Tom Gilliam is a top-rated RE/MAX Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®  with over 17 years of experience. When you choose a RE/MAX professional like Tom Gilliam to help you with the home buying process, you can expect an exemplary level of service. Tom is a local market expert with access to a full complement of real estate tools and resources to ensure a successful home buying experience. With a trusted RE/MAX professional and the right support system, you’ll be able to make the most informed decisions. Tom’s comprehensive, high-quality services can save you time and money, as well as make the experience more enjoyable and less stressful.

Why Choose RE/MAX?

RE/MAX (short for Real Estate Maximums) has been in operation since 1973. The real estate company has since grown to encompass more than 100,000 sales agents working in franchise-owned and operated offices in more than 100 countries. A real estate powerhouse in its own right, and one of the industry’s most recognized brands, RE/MAX  is regarded as one of the country’s most productive real estate sales forces.  

  • When you look for the highest quality real estate service, look to a RE/MAX Associate. RE/MAX Associates are The Real Estate Leaders®. You can depend on RE/MAX Associates to make the sale or purchase of a home as effortless and seamless as possible.
  • RE/MAX agents are The Hometown Experts With a World of Experience®. They are the most knowledgeable agents, with the experience and community connections to assist you in the homebuying process. Across the globe, they are the people next door, or just down the block.
  • At RE/MAX, advanced education is a priority. RE/MAX Associates dominate the Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR), Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE), Certified Residential Specialist (CRS), and Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES) ranks.
  • Customer SatisfactionThe proof of quality service is in repeat customers and in customers who refer RE/MAX Associates to friends. RE/MAX Sales Associates typically generate a large percentage of their business from past customers and referrals.

Why You Need Top-rated REMAX Farmington Hills REALTOR® -Tom Gilliam 

For buyers interested in Farmington Hills MI homes for sale, Tom can help you every step of the way with real estate contracts, finding the best interest rate and loan programs, and even work with appraisers and home inspectors. If you are relocating to Farmington Hills from another part of the state or country, you’ll need a qualified agent to help you find the right home for your family. As a local expert, Tom can help educate you on the best neighborhoods and communities, the types of homes and features offered, schools, utilities, zoning, surrounding area amenities, commuting information, local community developments, and more.

As your RE/MAX Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®, Tom can go over different financing options and refer lenders that are best qualified to help you. He will take the time to investigate all available properties and has access to many resources to assist you in uncovering the right home for your family. Tom will arrange private showings for homes worth seeing in person based on your specific criteria and assist you in making the best purchase decision by providing objective information about each property. He can also help with negotiations and inspections and will guide you through the closing process to ensure that everything flows together smoothly.

Living in Farmington Hills, MI

 Farmington Hills is a northern suburb of Metro Detroit and the second most-populated city in Oakland County. Farmington and Farmington Hills are often thought of as the same community although the two cities have separate services and addresses. Downtown Farmington is a charming, walkable destination with over 160 businesses from banks, to photography and yoga studios to one-of-a-kind shops along with a variety of local eateries. 

Also located downtown is Riley Park and Walter E. Sundquist Pavilion, home to the popular Farmington Farmers & Artisans Market that is held every Saturday. The best-known park event is Rhythmz in Riley Park, attended by about 500 people every Friday between the months of June and August.  

Several major corporations are located in Farmington Hills including Nissan Technical Center and Nissan Trading Corp, Hitachi Automotive Services, Hino Motors Manufacturing, and branches of Panasonic, Mercedes Benz, and Greenpath. Other top Farmington Hills employers include Robert Bosch Corporation, Botsford Hospital, Quicken Loans, Cengage Learning Gale, and Chrysler Financial Services.  

Twelve Oaks Mall in Novi is located less than 6 miles from Farmington Hills. The mall is the destination of choice of metro Detroit and features nearly 200 distinctive stores and restaurants such as Apple, Coach, Michael Kors, The Cheese Cake Factory, and more.  

For parents with school-age children, most of Farmington Hills is served by the highly-acclaimed district of Farmington Public Schools, which is shared with nearby Farmington and filled with top-rated schools. School districts serving a smaller portion of the community include Clarenceville Public Schools and Walled Lake Consolidated Schools.

Private schools in Farmington Hills include The International School, Maria Montessori Center, Mercy High School, St. Fabian Elementary and Middle School, Schoolhouse Montessori Academy – Farmington Hills, and Steppingstone School. Institutions of higher learning include branches of Michigan School of Psychology, Oakland Community College mi, and Wayne State University.

Farmington Hills has several community parks and facilities, including Costick Activities Center, MI -Dog Park, Fishing Pier, Founders Sports Park, MI – Golf Club & Driving Range, Heritage Park, Ice Arena, Jon Grant Community Center, Longacre House, Nature Center, Riley Archery Range, Skate Park, Splash Pad, and Farmington Hills Community Center.

The 211-acre Heritage Park in Farmington Hills features 4.5 miles of trails for hiking and nature study which are also used for cross-country skiing during the winter months. The park features a large picnic area, splash pad, group picnic shelter, playground, in-ground grills, two sand volleyball courts, an in-line hockey rink, and six horseshoe pits. 

The Great Lakes are the dominant physical resource in the region and a number of inland lakes reinforce the popularity of water sports and water-based activities. Lake St. Clair, the Detroit River, and Lake Erie are all within an hour’s drive of Farmington Hills and attract boaters, swimmers and fishermen. The Upper Rogue River flows from Farmington Hills southward through the north and eastern portions of the City. 

For golfers, the Farmington Hills Golf Club’s pristine 175-acre course offers one of the best golfing venues in the area, with 18 challenging holes measuring 6,413 yards, manicured bent grass tees, fairways and greens, ponds, and gently rolling hills. Other golf courses in Farmington Hills include Copper Creek Golf Course (9 holes) and Glen Oaks Golf Course (9-holes).

Several major highways service the city: Grand River Avenue is a major east-west corridor through downtown Farmington. I-696 is about three miles north and I-275 about three miles west. The M-5 Freeway runs through the City and Eight Mile Road is on the southern border. Because of the excellent highway system, most sections of the metropolitan area are readily available to Farmington’s residents. Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART) operates local and regional bus services for Farmington Hills. The closest major airport is Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport located about 30 miles from the center of town. 

Partner with REMAX Farmington Hills REALTOR® -Tom Gilliam 

Whether you’re interested in purchasing your first home, upsizing to a larger home with room for a growing family, looking to buy your dream home or the right investment property, why not take advantage of Tom’s 17-plus years of experience as a top-rated RE/MAX Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®? Tom will look out for your best interests, advocate for you, negotiate on your behalf, and do whatever it takes to ensure the best results possible. Get the homebuying process started today by calling Tom directly at (248) 790-5594 or you can reach him by email.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578 

Farmington Hills MI 

Buying A Home in Farmington Hills MI? Getting A Pre-approval is Key

Buying A Home in Farmington Hills MI? Getting A Pre-approval is Key

Buying A Home in Farmington Hills MI? Getting A Pre-approval is Key: You may have been told that it’s important to get pre-approved at the beginning of the homebuying process, but what does that really mean? And why is it so important? In today’s market, with rising home prices and high buyer demand, it’s crucial to have a clear understanding of your budget and stand out as a serious homebuyer to sellers.

Once you get pre-approved for a home loan, the seller knows you’re a better prospect than someone who hasn’t begun negotiating with a lender. Pre-approval is also helpful when you’re hunting for a house. If you have a pre-approval amount of $240,000, for example, you know not to waste your time shopping for a $400,000 home.

Is Pre-qualification the same as pre-approval?

A pre-qualification is a good indication of creditworthiness and the ability to borrow, but a pre-approval is the definitive word. A mortgage pre-qualification is usually based on an informal evaluation of your finances. You tell the lender about your credit, debt, income, and assets, and the lender estimates whether you can qualify for a mortgage and how much you may be able to borrow.

Pre-approval is the next step if you get a thumbs up during pre-qualification. During the mortgage pre-approval process, a lender will pull your credit report and review documents to verify your income, assets, and debts.  If you are confident about your credit and financial readiness to buy a home, then you might skip the pre-qualification step and go straight to the pre-approval and start shopping for a home. 

Mortgage pre-approval

A mortgage pre-approval is an offer by a lender to loan you a certain amount under specific terms. Pre-approval is not a guarantee you will be given a loan and the mortgage can still be denied. A home appraisal must be completed before a loan can close to ensure you aren’t paying more for the home than it’s worth. 

Also, the lender’s offer may not stand if your financial situation changes between pre-approval and closing. Keep in mind that it can take several days or longer to get preapproved for a mortgage. The timeline varies by lender and how quickly you are able to provide the lender with the information it needs, including proof of your income and assets.

When you are ready to make offers, a seller often wants to see a mortgage pre-approval and, in some cases, proof of funds to show that you’re a serious buyer. In today’s competitive market, sellers have an advantage because of intense buyer demand and a limited number of homes for sale; they may be less likely to consider offers without pre-approval letters.

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), homes are receiving an average of 5.1 offers for sellers to consider. As a result, bidding wars are more and more common. Pre-approval gives you the advantage you need if you get into a multiple-offer situation, and these days, it’s likely you will.

When multiple buyers have made legitimate offers for the same Farmington Hills MI property, the seller can choose which one they want to accept. A pre-approval letter indicates to both real estate agents and home sellers that you’re financially able to buy a home, and it’s expected that a pre-approval letter will accompany any offer you make.

How to get pre-approved for a home loan

Start by requesting copies of your credit reports. Dispute any errors that might be causing your score to be lower than it should be. If you find delinquent accounts, work with creditors to resolve the issues before reaching out to a lender for mortgage pre-approval.

A credit score of at least 620 is recommended, and a higher credit score will qualify you for better rates. Generally, a credit score of 740 or above will enable most borrowers to qualify for the best mortgage rates. 

Calculate your debt-to-income ratio. Your debt-to-income ratio, or DTI, is the percentage of gross monthly income that goes toward debt payments, including credit cards, student loans, and car loans. Lenders prefer borrowers with a DTI of 36% or below, including the mortgage, though it can be higher in some cases.

Gather income, financial account, and personal information such as Social Security numbers, current addresses, and employment details for you and your co-borrower (if you have one). You will also need bank and investment account information and proof of income. 

Documents you will need to get a mortgage pre-approval letter include your W-2 tax form and 1099s if you have additional income sources and pay stubs. Two years of continuous employment is preferred, but there are exceptions.

Self-employed applicants will likely have to provide two years of income tax returns. If your down payment will be coming from a gift or the sale of an asset, you’ll need a paper trail to prove it.

Understand what the lender is offering you. Make sure you understand all the terms of your mortgage. If you don’t know what something means, the lender must explain it to you. The Truth in Lending Act requires all lenders to provide you with comprehensive loan cost information so you can comparison shop.

Comparing offers from multiple lenders can help you compare rates and fees and save you thousands of dollars over a 30-year mortgage. Going through the mortgage pre-approval process shouldn’t hurt your credit score. FICO, one of the largest U.S. credit scoring companies, recommends confining those applications to a limited time frame, such as 30 days.

Time your pre-approval. A pre-approval is typically good for 90 days. Wait until you’re ready to start hunting for your house before you request a pre-approval, otherwise, you are wasting both your time and that of the lender who’s preapproving you.

The bottom line

Every step you take to gain an advantage as a buyer is crucial in a market that’s constantly changing. Interest rates are low, prices are going up, and lending institutions are regularly updating their standards.

It is important to have the information, resources, and the right team of professionals such as a loan officer and a trusted Farmington Hills MI real estate agent to help ensure that you take the right steps. If you’ve been trying to decide if now is the right time for you to buy a home, let’s connect to discuss your options.

Partner with top-rated Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® – Tom Gilliam

With a passion for real estate, Tom Gilliam has been serving Farmington Hills and the surrounding Oakland County MI area for nearly two decades. Tom is known for his friendly demeanor, dedication, and professionalism. He will be able to quickly ascertain your needs and goals and create a plan of action based on your specific criteria. 

Tom’s clients appreciate his honesty and transparency and feel it helps them as they make important real estate decisions. He understands how important good communication is to every transaction and is available for his clients whenever they have questions or concerns, promptly returning all phone calls, texts, and emails.

Having someone like Tom by your side to advise and guide you means there is one less thing you need to worry about. He will protect your interests, advocate for you, negotiate on your behalf, and go the extra mile to ensure the best results possible. If you are interested in buying or selling Farmington Hills real estate or homes in the surrounding area, please give Tom Gilliam a call at (248) 790-5594 or you can reach him by email.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578 

Map Farmington Hills MI

Things to Know About Buying A Farmington Hills Home With Guest Unit

Things to Know About Buying A Farmington Hills Home With Guest Unit

Things to Know About Buying A Farmington Hills MI Home With Guest Unit 

For many homebuyers, a separate guest house or attached in-law suite is the ultimate home purchase wish-list item. There are so many advantages to owning a guest unit. Some homeowners may use it to host relatives for long-term visits throughout the year. It’s much more convenient to have separate accommodations for guests, allowing both you and them plenty of privacy and space. While others might use the unit to house elderly parents, as transitional space for older children, as a studio, home office, or gym, or as a source of passive income by renting it out.  

Multigenerational Housing

As the demand for multigenerational housing steadily increases, so has the interest in guest houses and in-law suites. It is estimated that 64 million Americans currently live in multigenerational households. Mostly associated with the millennial generation, more young adults are staying home and living with their parents for longer to give them the time to earn money and gain financial independence before they strike out on their own.

Guest homes are ideal in this situation giving both parents and the young adult plenty of privacy and personal space. An in-law unit can also be the perfect accommodations for elderly parents, providing a convenient and comfortable setting that allows for independence and privacy, and with added affordability compared to separate households. Considering the average cost of assisted living can cost as much as $4,000 per month, it’s easy to see how this option can be a win-win situation for everyone in the long run.

Passive Income

A guest unit can also be a great source of passive income through renting, whether for long-term renters or for short-term vacation rentals like Airbnb or VRBO. If you decide to take the renting route, you will need to check with your local city for any requirements regarding permits or zoning laws that may prohibit you from renting the space. In particular, vacation rentals using Airbnb have specific rules and zoning laws you must follow.  

Also keep in mind that with a vacation rental, you must pay to furnish and stock the unit, manage bookings and payments, hire a cleaning crew, keep up with landscaping and repairs, and find new ways to attract happy renters. Is your home is in a popular area? Will you even have renters that will want to stay there? Also, be sure to factor in vacancy when considering costs. How many renters will you need to be consistently renting the unit to make a profit, let alone break-even?

In order to make the home attractive to renters and prospective home buyers when it comes time to sell, the suite should have the ability to be closed and locked to the rest of the home for privacy and should truly function as an independent space with kitchen and bathroom facilities. Easy accessibility to the separate unit, as well as handicapped accessibility, improves the function of the independent living space and increases the value.

Will a guest house be included in the overall square footage? 

An additional structure that is not connected to the main house in any way will not be included in the overall square footage. An example of this is a guest house that is in the backyard and has its own entrance. These structures are considered Added Detached. This is because the livable square footage of a detached guest house isn’t included in the price per square foot calculations. Garages, pool houses, guest houses, or any rooms that require you to leave the finished area of the main house to gain access are not counted.

If the additional structure is attached to any part of the main house, it can be included in the square footage. This applies even if the structure has its own entrance. For example, a guesthouse or in-law unit that can only be accessed from its own door but shares a wall with the kitchen in the house.

Will a guest house or in-law suite increase your home’s value?

At some point, you may want to sell your home and in-law unit – perhaps you move for a job or want to downsize when you retire. Whatever the reason, you’ll want your home to have gone up in value so you can walk away with more cash in your pocket. Homes with separate guest houses or attached in-law suites are growing in popularity. More and more families are choosing to live in multi-generational homes either to care for their aging parents or because of financial reasons. 

However, while homes with guest units are increasing in demand, there is no hard figure on how much value they will add to your home because every real estate market is different. Buyers are looking for different features at different times, though an extra suite is likely to stand out for many reasons. If you want to calculate the value of your in-law unit, determine what it’s really worth including the value it will add to your own lives if you’re not planning on selling your home anytime soon. 

If you use it to save money on in-home caregiving or retirement homes, what would you have spent on these things if you didn’t have the suite? If you plan on making money through short-term rentals, what will that income amount to? Also, think about what it would cost to add an in-law suite in the future. These things can all mean extra value to the right buyer.  In-law suites and guest homes are highly sought-after elements, and when it comes time to sell, anything to make your property more desirable can tip the scales in your favor.

Final Thoughts

Buying a Farmington Hills home with a guest unit is a big financial decision that can quickly get overwhelming when you maneuver through the extra paperwork and city requirements. An experienced, Farmington Hills MI real estate agent can help you navigate the local market, city laws, and find an affordable property with an in-law unit that fits your budget so you have cash left over to cover any extra guest home expenses and upkeep costs.

Partner with top-rated Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® – Tom Gilliam

With a passion for real estate, Tom Gilliam has been serving Farmington Hills and the surrounding Oakland County MI area for nearly two decades. Tom is known for his friendly demeanor, dedication, and professionalism. He will be able to quickly ascertain your needs and goals and create a plan of action based on your specific criteria. Tom’s clients appreciate his honesty and transparency and feel it helps them as they make important real estate decisions. He understands how important good communication skills are to every transaction and is available for his clients whenever they have questions or concerns – promptly returning all phone calls, texts, and emails.

Having someone like Tom to advise and guide you means there is one less thing you need to worry about. He will protect your interests, advocate for you, negotiate on your behalf, and go the distance to ensure the best results possible. If you are interested in buying or selling Farmington Hills real estate or homes in the surrounding area, please give Tom Gilliam a call at (248) 790-5594 or you can reach him by email.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578 

Map Farmington Hills MI

Selling Your Farmington Hills MI Home? Buyers Want Home Office Workspace

Selling Your Farmington Hills MI Home? Buyers Want Home Office Workspace

Selling Your Farmington Hills MI Home? Buyers Want Home Office Workspace

Although there’s been a significant uptick in buyer demand for home office space in the market, working-from-home was already a growing trend well before the pandemic. Statistics show that as of 2018, there were 4.3 million remote workers in the U.S., which was an increase of 140% since 2005. 

Both employers and employees are realizing many of the benefits that come from working from home. And workforce analysts predict that by the end of 2021, as many as 30% of all employees will still be working from home at least part of the week.

As a growing number of companies are requiring or offering the option to work from home, more Farmington Hills MI home buyers are including home office space on their must-have checklist. 

In response to the demand, sellers are now positioning extra space in their home as a “home office” or “workspace” to market their Farmington Hills MI property, anREALTORS® say they’ve seen a notable increase of home offices mentioned in listings.  

Add value to your home and attract buyers 

In a realtor.com® survey, 63% of respondents indicated that they plan to buy a new home in light of their ability to work from home. On average, listings featuring a home office command a 3.4% price premium and sell nine days faster than listings without one, according to realtor.com data.

Many REALTORS® agree that showcasing a dedicated work area can help attract more buyers to your property. Most homeowners don’t have the luxury of having a specific room dedicated as a home office. Work areas at home often consist of a desk and computer sharing space in a guest room with a bed or exercise equipment.

If you are preparing to put your home for the market, why not stage a multi-functional room like this into a home office instead? Showing buyers that your house has room for an office, even if it’s a shared space in your kitchen or living room, can add value to your home in their eyes.

Cost of building a home office and ROI

According to HomeLight research, to build a new home office, homeowners can expect to spend an average of $12,000, but they will get an approximately 87% return on that investment when it comes time to sell.

Before getting started with any renovations or improvements, it’s best to consult with a Farmington Hills MI real estate agent to get their advice and guidance on maximizing your home’s value for resale in your area.

Will converting a bedroom into a home office boost the resale value of your home?  

If you don’t have an official home office, you might be looking around your house, wondering which room could be converted into a workspace. Keep in mind that while buyers are looking for home office space, bedrooms and bathrooms rule the day to boost resale value. 

Most buyers would much rather have four bedrooms than have three bedrooms and an office. Rather, look for opportunities to create dual-purpose spaces.

Since you’re probably not entertaining many guests during the pandemic, now’s a great time to create a combination guest room/office. Remove the bed, and replace it with a sleeper sofa or love seat. 

Transforming an unused area of your home into a workspace

Take a look around at any unused areas in your home, and you’ll probably be able to find a place to create a workspace that buyers will covet. A finished, walkout basement could be turned into a comfortable and private workspace. Or, a nook underneath the staircase or unused space at the top of a staircase could make a compact office.

Setting up a workspace in the kitchen, which is usually the central hub of a home or in a noisy TV room isn’t likely to appeal to many potential buyers. It’s best to choose a room with adequate space that’s far from the main living spaces and not frequented by family members or guests.

Try carving out space in another area such as the dining room. Keep the dining table, but remove the buffet or the leaves in the table and extra chairs to make room for a chair and desk. You are not eliminating the dining room – merely suggesting to buyers how the room can be repurposed further to suit an office.

If you have no choice but to set up a home office space in the main living area, present it in the most appealing way possible. Try separating the work area from the rest of the room with a folding screen, partition wall, curtain, or even tall houseplants like a Fiddle Leaf Fig tree or a potted Dracaena.

Choose a free-standing desk to fit the space without overwhelming it. Or, consider a wall-mounted desk that takes up less space. Keep the area neat and tidy, bundle up any loose cords or wires, and Illuminate a poorly lit work zone with a small desk lamp.

Staging your home office 

If you already have a dedicated home office, staging it will create a functional and organized space that buyers are looking for at this time.  As with all staging, start with a clean and clutter-free space, void of personal objects. Stage your home office by storing supplies out of sight.

Hide office supplies inside desk drawers or stash them inside a storage cabinet. Once you’ve decluttered, depersonalized, and cleaned your office space, you can begin the fun part of staging it. The desk should be featured prominently in the room as it’s the main component.

Neutral colors create a relaxing work environment. Choose a neutral color scheme in calming colors, like beiges, whites, soft grays, greens, or blues. Task lighting is a must in every home office. A lamp for the desk should be bright enough to illuminate your workspace, but not blinding.

And with the growing number of meetings now taking place by way of video conferencing, you’ll want to ensure the lighting is suitable for being on camera. Additionally, place a large area rug beneath the desk area and chair to warm up and add color and texture to the space.

You can also add some live green plants and fresh flowers, and place a tall, big-leafed plant in an empty corner to bring life into the space.

The takeaway

With so many people now working remotely, the demand for a home office or workspace is on the rise. If you are planning on selling your Farmington Hills MI home and already have a home office, now’s the time to promote it. If you don’t have a dedicated home office, create and stage a workspace in another area of your home that will bring in the buyers and seal the deal!

Partner with Highly-rated Farmington Hills MI REALTORⓇ -Tom Gilliam

With over 20 years of real estate experience, Tom Gilliam is proud to be a trusted Farmington Hills MI REALTORⓇ – offering his guidance and expertise to area home buyers and sellers. Tom understands that buying or selling a home is a significant financial and life decision and that you are looking for someone you can trust and work with.

If you are ready to list your current property, Tom can help determine the market value of your home and make suggestions on how you can command a higher asking price.  As your agent, he will protect your best interests, advocate for you, pull together all the details of the transaction, and get your home sold quickly for the highest market price. Feel free to contact Tom directly at (248) 790-5594 or you can get in touch by email.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Tom @ Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578 

Farmington Hills MI Real Estate

Article sources:

https://www.homelight.com/blog/building-a-home-office/
https://globalworkplaceanalytics.com/telecommutingstatistics
https://startupsavant.com/news/home-buyers-add-office
https://www.onlinehsa.com/how-a-home-office-increases-appeal-to homebuyers/
https://www.tepilo.com/blog/2017/09/
why-broadband-speed-is-becoming-so-important-for-property-buyers
https://www.newhomesource.com/learn/design-home-office/

1 2 3 51

Pin It on Pinterest