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Latest News Blog

It's getting increasingly colder out there as we head into the heart of winter. And if you haven't taken a moment to winterize your home, there's no...
So you’re getting ready to buy a home and you have noticed there are a few things you would really like to have fixed before you move in. The question is,...
It is so tempting to use flowery language to sell your home to potential buyers. But did you know that there are certain words that actually hurt more...
We all have well-meaning friends who want to help when we consider buying or selling a house. But friendship doesn't mean you should take their...
Many of us fantasize about clearing all the junk from our homes, to de-clutter and simplify our lives. Some take that thought further and flirt with...

Winterize your home

It's getting increasingly colder out there as we head into the heart of winter. And if you haven't taken a moment to winterize your home, there's no better time.


These 5 tips will have you feeling the heat in no time...


1. Protect your pipes – "Insulating your pipes can raise water temperatures by 2 to 4 degrees, allowing you to lower your water temperature setting and your heating bill," according to Trulia.com.


2. Though you should've already done it, if you haven't, clean out your gutters on the next day it's feasible to do so. As BHG.com explains, "Clogged gutters can lead to siding damage, basement floods, and gutter corrosion."


3. Get a furnace checkupKiplinger.com says, "For about $80 to $100, a technician will inspect your furnace or heat pump to be sure the system is clean and in good repair, and that it can achieve its manufacturer-rated efficiency. The inspection also measures carbon-monoxide leakage."


4. Seal those drafty windows – "Windows are just bound to have gaps around them. The seal around the edges wears down or cracks over time with changing temperatures and a settling house. After a while, these gaps and cracks can let hot air out and cold air in (or vice versa during the summer). Use waterproof caulking or weather stripping to block the gaps and keep the heat inside where it belongs," explains HowStuffWorks.com.


5. Storm preparation – You should, "always have a fully-stocked emergency kit at hand. Include batteries, a flashlight, candles, matches and a lighter; warm clothes and blankets; a battery-powered radio; non-perishable food items and water; a first-aid kit and specialty products like medicine, baby formula and pet food (if necessary)," according to StyleatHome.com. They recommend you have three days' worth of supplies for each person.


*SURPRISE TIP: You should reverse your fans so they spin clockwise. Trulia.com says that's because, "clockwise-spinning fans will help trap heat inside rooms and reduce the work of your heating unit. This will save you money, since the average ceiling fan uses only about 75 watts of energy, a fraction of the thousands of watts it takes to fully run the heat."


Need help finding your next cozy castle? Call Cassidee Reeve, a Top Producing Agent at NP Dodge, at 402.706.2901 to set up your free consult today!

Five repairs you shouldn’t ask a seller to make

So you’re getting ready to buy a home and you have noticed there are a few things you would really like to have fixed before you move in. The question is, what do you have the right to ask the seller to fix?


As MaxRealEstateExposure.com explains, “Electrical, plumbing, roof, HVAC – these are repairs that you can reasonably expect a seller to take care of under most circumstances, as long as the problems are significant enough to impact your use of the house negatively.”


Demanding too many repairs can actually kill a potential deal.


Five unrealistic repair requests:


1. According to Trulia.com, you’re wasting your time to make “purely cosmetic requests.” There is no point in asking a buyer to repaint when you know you would rather pick the colors yourself. Plus, paint is an easy and affordable fix.


2. Anything that would cost less than $100 to fix. MaxRealEstateExposure.com warns, “There may be a hundred little things that need to be fixed on a home but both you and the seller only have so much time to close the deal. When you hit a seller with multiple little repair requests, he or she may feel overwhelmed.”


3. Crosslandteam.com advises, “It’s unreasonable to expect sellers to cure code items in older homes, when those items were not required at the time the home was built.”


4. Trulia.com points out you also don’t need to request a fix on a “nonworking light switch or faulty electrical socket that pops up in an inspection. It may seem like a fix you should request — but if it’s truly a minor issue and not a sign of larger problems, skip it.”


5. “A loose doorknob, light fixture or railing on a deck or stairwell may be annoying, or even potentially unsafe, but these problems are also often fixable with basic hand tools and a little effort,” explains MaxRealEstateExposure.com. In the interest of moving forward with your deal, it’s probably best to avoid repair requests on these items.


A good buyer’s agent can help you navigate the ins and outs of repair requests as well as helping you get the best deal possible.


Schedule your free consultation today with Cassidee Reeve, a Top Producing agent at NP Dodge, 402-706-2901.

Ignore Awful Real Estate Advice

We all have well-meaning friends who want to help when we consider buying or selling a house. But friendship doesn't mean you should take their suggestions.

Here are four awful pieces of real estate advice you should never follow:

1. Price your house based on what you paid, and add extra so you make a profit.

"What you want doesn't really matter in this scenario – the only thing that does is what a buyer is willing to pay," Realtor.com says. "And that will be based on what similar-size homes in your area sold for recently. And that figure is what the asking price should be based on."

2. Don't use social media to sell your home.

"Social media allows you to reach more people. It also allows you to reach more people with your listings than you would be able to by only listing your properties on sites like Zillow," JelMarketingStrategies points out.

"Whether you're using Twitter Search or Facebook Ads, being active on social media is a great way to find more people to look at the properties you have listed, increasing your chances of making a sale."

3. Get your new mortgage from the bank you currently use.

You're better off going with the bank that offers you the most favorable terms. "You already know to shop around for a home. You need to do the same with your loan," AtlanticBrokerage.com says.

4. Use the listing agent to represent your interests, too.

"While listing agents work for the seller, they might offer to help you, too. What's wrong with that? It certainly seems to cut down on the number of cooks in the kitchen, and maybe it'll give you an edge in a competitive bidding situation," LaughtonTeam.com says,

"The trouble is, you need someone who's there to serve your interests, not the interests of both sides. You want the best deal you can and the best way to achieve that is to have a buyer's agent in your corner."

Ultimately, it's up to you. You can take someone's advice or just nod, thank them and do the smarter thing.

Cassidee Reeve, a Top Producing agent at NP Dodge, will look out for your best interests. Set up your free consult at 402-706-2901.

How NOT to describe your home

It is so tempting to use flowery language to sell your home to potential buyers. But did you know that there are certain words that actually hurt more than help when creating your ad?


The word gorgeous is thrown around a lot. It's a common catchphrase that really doesn't tell the buyer much about your property. And honestly, one look at the pictures you put online with your description will tell them all they need to know.


Trulia.com explains it's better to write "a listing description as if you were walking through the home yourself."


Be careful with use of the word luxury as well as that also implies different things to different people. One person might consider having a pot filler and granite counter tops in the kitchen as being luxurious while another person might require a wine fridge and a warming drawer.


Another Trulia.com post advises stating the facts clearly. "The more detail the better: Instead of "new floors," go with "new bamboo floors," otherwise you risk leaving readers wondering if it's laminate, for instance."


Charming or cozy. These terms can be used effectively but you should take into consideration where you live before using them. In bigger cities where space is at a premium, these may not be the words you want to use to sell your place as they make people think cramped or small. However, in some place where sprawling lots abound, some people might like the idea of buying a charming cottage or a cozy condo.


As Retipster.com says, "The goal is to be very clear about why your property is an amazing opportunity and if it's communicated the right way (and if your asking price is in-line), you can help a lot of people "connect-the-dots" and realize that your property is exactly what they need."


Need help coming up with a compelling description for your property? Call Cassidee Reeve, a Top Producing agent at NP Dodge, and set up your free consult today. Call 402-706-2901.

Should You Downsize to a Tiny House?

Many of us fantasize about clearing all the junk from our homes, to de-clutter and simplify our lives. Some take that thought further and flirt with buying a tiny house.

After all, we do fine in small space when we’re on vacation or at a hotel. We can sell everything we don’t need, downsize and save money.

But is it really that simple?

You may be interested in a tiny house but will there be someone to buy it when it’s time to sell? Buyers are few.

“A tiny home is not recommended because it only fits a small demographic of buyers,” Trulia.com says. “The more restraints the property offers the market, the more niche it becomes. The more niche the home, the less buyers available.”

To find or build a tiny home might be simple. The tougher part may be to find enough land for it.

“Land is expensive, in growing short supply and people want a balance of having land and being close to city or town centers where they can access services, entertainment and employment,” TheTinyLife.com says. “These things are often in conflict with each other.”

Not always economical

Nor do you always save money.

“There is no storage space, so you'll need to rent a storage unit, which means paying for it, and then you have to go back and forth to it every time you need anything larger than a toothpick,” AOL.com points out.

And if you want to entertain, you might have to rent a larger venue.

Lifestyle can’t meet changing needs

Money.USNews.com notes the tiny-home lifestyle often can’t be sustained.

“Will your family grow to include additional members? Do you or your family members prefer privacy? What are you going to do when you're too old to climb over your kitchen to get in your bed?” the website asks. “Where are you going to store personal keepsakes that you don't want to part with?”

These are all points to consider. A tiny home may be your idea of heaven. But be sure you ask yourself some important questions before you take that big leap.

Cassidee Reeve, a Top Producing agent at NP Dodge, will advise you on how practical your tiny-home dream can be. Call 402-706-2901 to set up your free consult.

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