With Summertime right around the corner, the spring is the best time to prepare for the long summer days. Below are some great ways to prepare your home for the warmer weather so you can enjoy your home to its fullest.
Summertime is one of the best times of year; children are out of school, it’s the perfect time to explore the great outdoors, and of course, everyone’s favorite: good ol’ summer vacation.
After the freezing temperatures of winter and the unpredictability of spring, you and your family are probably more than ready for the warm, summertime weather. But the question is: is your home?
Here are 5 tips to get your home ready for warmer weather:
1. Get your A/C checked for the Summertime heat
The summertime heat is great for beach days and splashing in the pool. But when you’re done enjoying the sunshine, you’ll want to open the door to a nice, cool interior. But if your air conditioner isn’t working properly, you can quickly find yourself with no escape from the rising temperatures.
The best time to get your air conditioning in working order is before summer hits. Start by changing out the filters. Dirty filters make it harder for your A/C unit to do its job, lower the efficiency of your air conditioning system and waste energy. After you replace the filters, let your air conditioning system run for an hour or so to see how its cooling; a test run will give you insight into any potential problems you need to have serviced.
You should have an HVAC professional service your air conditioning system once a year. Even if you don’t notice any obvious problems, servicing your A/C annually will keep it running better for longer. Spring is the best time of year to get your A/C service; once summer hits, most HVAC companies are booked solid through the summer months, and the last thing you want is to find yourself in the thick of summer with a broken air conditioning system and no relief from the heat.
2. Switch out your gear
Each season required a completely different set of tools, gear, furniture, and decor. To avoid clutter, it’s best to store these items when they’re not in use. If you’re storing your seasonal items, you’ll need to switch everything out as summertime approaches so you have everything on hand you need to enjoy the season.
Put your patio furniture out in the backyard so it’s ready for when you entertain guests. Check your grill to make sure it’s in working order and ready for summer BBQs. Switch out those heavy winter comforters with lightweight quilting that’s more appropriate for summer weather.
3. Get your lawn up to speed
One of the best parts of summer is getting to enjoy time outside, often in your own backyard. But if you’re like most people, your lawn could probably use a bit of TLC after the cooler months.
Survey your property for any visible damage caused by winter weather. Check all playground equipment to make sure it’s in good shape before the kids get out of school. Add a few new plants or flowers to add visual interest to the landscape.
Your backyard will play host to many celebrations, playdates, and lazy evenings with your family this summer. In order to enjoy all the fun of summer fully, you want to make sure your lawn is in the best shape possible.
4. Plant a garden
Speaking of the backyard, there’s no better time than summer to plant a garden. The warmer weather is the ideal time for a rainbow of vegetables to flourish, including beets, cucumbers, corn, tomatoes, peppers, and squash. If you’re new to gardening, pick up a few raised garden beds and plant your seeds now. Before summertime hits its peak, you’ll be enjoying fresh vegetables straight from your garden – perfect for a refreshing summer salad.
5. Get painting out of the way
If you’ve been thinking about painting the interior of your home, now is the time to do it. Painting only gets more challenging as the temperature rises; since you’ll need to have your windows open while you paint, A/C isn’t an option. Not only will the heat make painting feel more physically demanding, but humid weather can make the paint fumes feel more overwhelming.
If you do decide to paint, consider some seasonally appropriate hues, like gold or sky blue, to bring the feeling of summer indoors.
Summertime will be here before you know it. And with these tips, your home will be ready for it.
A while back, Forbes noted what they called “The Four Ways the Real Estate Market Changes” after Labor Day. The article recognized a truism that holds for most parts of Michigan—namely, that the period between Labor Day and Thanksgiving is what most of us think of as “fall.” It went on to describe four ways the change of seasons alters the house hunting landscape.
Although I may not agree entirely with their broad brush proposition that a great number of house hunters throw in the towel after Labor Day, the four market changes described are often true enough.
Farmington Hills House Hunting, Labor Day Means “Go!”
- More of a buyer’s market. Buyers who have held off through the prime selling seasons are more apt to find sellers who are more open to negotiation.
- Action increases for vacation homes. This is prime time for Farmington Hills home shoppers whose eyes are on vacation homes. By purchasing in the fall, “you can have it bought and furnished by spring.”
- Price dips. House hunters find that asking prices, like the autumn leaves, fall. Forbes may have simply been unable to resist the simile, but in many cases, it’s true!
- Open-ended house hunting. Time pressures (like having to be moved in by the first day of school) will have vanished by Labor Day, so many Farmington Hills house hunters tend to adopt a more leisurely house hunting attitude. There may also be something about crisp autumn days (and they’ll be here soon enough) that helps contribute to a more relaxed atmosphere—at least until the Holidays loom!
Every Farmington Hills house hunter has specific individual goals and expectations—and of course, the same is true for sellers, as well. But it does seem to be true that post-Labor Day Farmington Hills listings tend to include an uptick in price reductions—as well as some withdrawals that, as Forbes might have it, “will sprout anew” come springtime.
If your busy summer included activities and travel that kept you fully occupied, now may be an opportune time to inaugurate your own Farmington Hills house hunting venture. If so, do give me a call!
House Not Showing?
Picture having your house for sale, and you feel like it isn’t being shown enough. Or maybe it isn’t really being shown at all.
You expected lots of buyers coming through. Ideally, you even expected an offer (or multiple offers!) to come in pretty quickly.
But instead, not that many people seem to even know your house is for sale. Otherwise, they’d come out and see it. If people would come and see it, the house would practically sell itself, because it’s so nice.
You’re discouraged, frustrated, and angry…
You wonder if your real estate agent is doing his/her job.
Isn’t your agent supposed to be showing the house to their own buyers? That doesn’t seem to be happening.
Aren’t the other agents in your agent’s office supposed to be showing the house to their buyers?
Not one agent from his office has shown it yet.
Isn’t your agent supposed to be spreading the word to other real estate agents at other companies, and getting them to show the house to their buyers? Again…not happening. At least not as much as you anticipated.
And, isn’t your agent supposed to market your home, so that buyers that neither he, she, or any other agent even knows about, will come out and see your house?
Your agent probably isn’t doing anything wrong.
While it’s natural to be frustrated, it won’t do you much good. It will do you less good to be angry, or disappointed with your real estate agent.
You’ve probably expressed your frustration, and all your agent seems to be doing is making excuses. Or pushing you to do something you don’t want to do…like lower your price. Your frustration, and pushing to see more showing activity, may very well be forcing your agent to react that way, when in fact all you need is some perspective.
What may help you most in this situation is some third-party, objective thoughts. So, here goes.
First, here are some basic things many homeowners do not know.
- There are only so many buyers in the market at any given time.
- Not all of the buyers are even ready, willing, and able to even buy your house right away.
- Some buyers are just getting started looking, and much of that begins online.
- Most of the buyers who are truly ready, willing, and able to buy are the only ones you need to care about.
- And most of them are represented by, and working with a real estate agent.
- Maybe an appropriate, ready, willing, and able buyer is working with your listing agent…but, most likely not.
- And, there’s a good chance that the most appropriate buyer isn’t even working with another agent within your listing agent’s office.
OK, with that under your belt, let’s get into a few more thoughts.
- Not that many years ago, people had to call the listing agent or their office for even the most basic information about your house…like the price, or address. Or at least have a buyer’s agent who represented them to get them the information.
- If they saw a picture of a home for sale, it was likely just that…a picture. Of the outside of the house.
- Both of the above caused buyers who were at even the earliest stages of buying to come out and see a house for sale. It was the only way to rule out a house. It was the only way to get their feet wet and get a handle on what they could afford.
- None of that is necessary anymore, now that the Internet has allowed so much information to be available to buyers at all stages of the process to see from the comfort of their own home.
The Internet has cut down on showings.
Buyers at all stages of the process (just beginning, all the way to needing to make a decision immediately) see a house that goes for sale immediately, in real time, as it pops up on the market. Pictures and all.
They can even see maps of the location, aerial views, street views, videos, etc. They can literally see inside the property, with all of the pictures made available nowadays!
There’s virtually no need to go out and physically see a property…unless it’s of actual interest to them. Before, they had to go out just to rule out houses. So, almost every house on the market would get more showings back in the day. Every buyer, at every stage of looking, would come out just to get a peek. Now they do it remotely.
This cuts down on how many buyers come out to see your home.
And only the most interested, most serious, ready, willing, and able buyers are coming out to see your home.
This is a good thing…it’s efficient.
So why isn’t your house being shown?
It’s natural for an owner to want more showings. But, be careful what you wish for.
Just creating traffic through your house isn’t entirely beneficial. You should only want serious, ready, willing and able buyers coming through. And remember, there aren’t endless amounts of them in the market.
What’s the use of harassing your agent to create traffic and showings if the buyers have no ability or intention of actually buying the house? You are tasking your agent with creating a bit of a dog and pony show for you.
Instead, sit down or hop on the phone with your agent and get down to what the real root of the problem is. The most sensible thing to do is for you and your agent to analyze what the cause is, and hopefully generate more showings.
Go over things like the following:
- Is it the overall market? Are there not that many buyers actually buying in your area and price range? If so, maybe just be patient.
- Are the buyers who have seen your house buying other homes? Then, maybe your house is overpriced, or not as appealing as other choices in the area and price range.
- Is your house not being shown at all? Good chance that it’s either your price is too high, or there are no buyers in the market. Again, look to see if there are other houses comparable to yours selling.
More often than not, the reason a house isn’t getting shown is due to either the market being a bit slow, or the price being too high. It’s that simple.
Pricing appropriately within the market should get your house shown and sold quickly to the ready, willing, and able buyers in the market…as long as there is at least a buyer who is ready, willing and able in the market.
So, just take a moment to truly understand that creating more showings won’t solve the problem of getting your home sold. You can have showings every hour of every day, but there are only so many true buyers in the market, and they are aware of every house on the market the minute it comes on.
If nobody is coming, and / or nobody is buying it…it’s either price, or a lack of buyers altogether.