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Better Pictures of My Home

When I put my house up for sale, I took some pictures of it using my old point and shoot camera so that people could see what the house looked like before they decide to buy it. There wasn’t much interest in my house, and my wife suggested that I needed to take better photos. I thought my photos were fine, but perhaps I was the only one who did. My wife made another suggestion that I should hire a real estate photographer. The idea of hiring a photographer to take pictures of my own home seemed preposterous to me, but I wasn’t getting any results without the photographer.

While looking for photographers, I found some amazing pictures that had been taken of various homes across the country. The photos made mine look terrible in comparison. The difference came from not only the quality of the camera that the photographers used, but the techniques as well. Continue reading

Metro Atlanta’s Most Wanted Communities

While Atlanta is only one city, its neighboring suburbs reach out across multiple counties, allowing easy access commuting to and from the city. With all of this growth, there has been a surge of new home builders but only one stands out from the others as the best choice for home buyers: Acadia Homes & Neighborhood.

Each community is affordable and offers features exclusive to the subdivision which can include: 3 car garages, basements, master suites on the main level, and gated community access. Additionally, for recreation, there are clubhouses, tennis courts, playgrounds, and pools. Homes are built to the most modern building code requirements; allowing total peace-of-mind with respect to the home’s structural worthiness and long-term reliability.

One of the best features of buying a new home is the ability to select finishing touches and fixtures. Traditional, contemporary, transitional, and craftsman-inspired faucets, lighting, tiles, backsplashes, and flooring options involve buyers in the design selection process and allow for a truly customized experience.

If given a choice, as a buyer, would you want take a chance on a home that will most likely require a kitchen or bath remodel, a new heating and air conditioning unit replacement, and possible re-plumbing or re-wiring? If the answer is no, it just makes sense to visit an Acadia Homes & Neighborhood Community today.

Real Estate for Sale Tips for Listing Houses As For Sale by Owner

The amount of real estate for sale is staggering and competition is fierce. Market reports estimate that approximately one-third of property listings consist of properties which are in foreclosure or repossessed by banks. In order to liquidate foreclosed homes, banks reduce purchase prices to entice quick sales.

Homeowners listing real estate for sale through realtors often find it difficult to reduce their asking price because they must pay commissions. If a buyer uses a different realtor than the listing agent, homeowners are often required to pay commissions to both agents in order to close the deal. This can add several thousand dollars to their closing costs and substantially reduce overall profit.

In addition to realtor commissions, sellers also compete with a multitude of discounted foreclosure properties. While most bank owned properties require repairs or renovations, buyers can often purchase distressed properties for 20- to 30-percent less than a home in perfect condition.

Buyers oftentimes become star-struck with lowball prices and fail to calculate the true cost of buying foreclosure homes in need of substantial repair. Once they review multiple low-cost homes they develop a mindset that all houses should be priced equally and will bypass houses in excellent, move-in ready properties.

One option which can allow property owners to reduce the asking price of their home is to list the property as for sale by owner. Since the homeowner acts as the realtor there is no need to pay agent commissions which can amount to as much as 8-percent of the purchase price.

Engaging in for sale by owner real estate transactions is no easy feat. Sellers must take time to become educated about the process and become familiar with real estate laws and property transfers. At minimum, sellers should enlist the services of a real estate lawyer to draft contracts and ensure property transfers are filed through appropriate government agencies.

Sellers can obtain most of the information they need to list real estate for sale on their own via the Internet. Libraries can also be a good source of information. Most office supply stores sell preformatted sales contracts, promissory notes, and FSBO kits which include purchase agreements and signs which can be placed in front of the home.

Property owners should considering joining online real estate clubs or participating in local networking groups. Many private investors provide webinars to teach sellers the basics of selling property on their own. Some realtors provide educational seminars or offer discounted services to facilitate certain aspects of the sale.

Participating in networking groups gives sellers the opportunity to meet professionals that can assist them through the process of selling realty. Members often consist of realtors, mortgage brokers, realtors, property appraisers, and home inspectors.

The Internet is also a good source for locating FSBO websites which allow sellers to upload photos and information regarding their property. Sellers offering investment properties may qualify for 1031 exchanges which allow them to exchange their property for like-kind realty.

Selling houses in today’s real estate market requires sellers to prepare their home to make it more appealing than other homes for sale in the area. Sellers should make all necessary repairs, paint, replace outdated appliances, worn carpet or flooring, and thoroughly clean the house from top to bottom.

The home’s exterior should be in pristine condition and offer ‘curb appeal’. The exterior is the first thing prospective buyers see, so sellers should strive to make it as inviting as possible. It is crucial to remove debris, clear weeds, trim bushes and trees, and make certain exterior lighting is adequate. Power wash the exterior or add a new coat of paint; wash windows; remove rusty awnings, and repair broken gutters, mailboxes, or anything that detracts from the appearance.

For sale by owner real estate places everything in the seller’s hands. If necessary hire professionals to help with time-consuming tasks such as painting, landscaping, or cleaning. If the tasks become overwhelming, seller’s always have the option of hiring a realtor to list real estate for sale.

How to Maximize Your Resume’s Real Estate

Real estate is not just about properties and land. It is how advertisers see ad space and web developers see web pages – it is about the value of a particular area within any space, even resume space. Yes, a simple 8.5×11 piece of paper is real estate when turned into a resume.

However, it is a common mistake for job seekers to bury their best qualities, skills, and accomplishments in bad real estate – hidden in long paragraphs, under irrelevant content, or even on subsequent pages, leaving the reader feeling unimpressed because they can’t find your best stuff. If you want to market your best qualities, you must position them in the best place possible on your resume.

But, why? Because employers will take about 30 seconds to scan your resume for keywords, specific skills, measurable achievements, etc. and if your best assets aren’t advertised in key real estate, they will easily be overlooked.

So, what is the best way to get the biggest aesthetic bang for your buck? Here are some suggestions.

What to send up front: Include your most relevant and impressive skills sets, experiences, and accomplishments at the top of your resume to form a strong, focused introduction. This sets the stage for the rest of your document and tells the reader who you are (before telling them what you’ve done). If you specialize in a specific field, make sure industry-specific keywords and phrases are present here.

If you’re field is technical in nature or requires extensive computer knowledge, list your applicable skills and certifications “above the fold.” That means put a bulleted list of your technical qualifications (e.g. C++, QuickBooks, CRM software, etc.) above the middle of the first page.

Make it easy for them to reach you. By that, I mean don’t feel the need to list two phone numbers, a fax number, a mailing address, email, personal URL, blog, LinkedIn, and on and on. Your address (in some cases just city and state will do), email address, and one phone number will suffice. This information should always be at the top of your resume under your name.

If you just completed a degree, list that above your professional experience to show your knowledge is current – and essentially to show what you’ve been up to during the past few years.

What to minimize or omit: I’ve seen many resumes that waste valuable page-one real estate on large, fancy print, photos, personal information, or just plain irrelevant data. Including these types of insignificant content can be detrimental to your search. The best way to combat this is to read the first half of your first page and ask yourself, “Is the content on this portion enough to keep the reader interested?” If the answer is no, you need to rethink that part of your resume.

Other aspects of your resume that should hang in the shadows (in poor real estate) include job gaps, brief job tenure, and less relevant information that may not apply directly to your current field.

Once you begin to view your resume in terms of real estate, you will begin to seeing where your best qualities will shine!

Cathy Eng is a Certified Advanced Resume Writer and owner of Resume Rocketeer, Inc. She specializes in helping clients leverage their best skills and experiences to create a powerful, effective resume and cover letter. Cathy specializes in a wide variety of fields and experience levels, as well as professionals looking to change career paths and those returning to the workforce after an extended period of time. She is a member of the National Resume Writers Association, Career Directors International, and Professional Association of Resume Writers.