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1 in 4 Moms Don’t Like Their Homes

Mother’s Day was this Sunday, and in a year full of homebuying buzz, many moms may be reflecting on their own home purchase.

As it turns out, a lot of moms have been left unsatisfied with their home — more than 1 in 4 wish they had purchased a different home, according to a new study by LendingTree. Moms are also nearly twice as likely to experience homebuyer’s remorse than dads, only 14 percent of which experience those same feelings of regret toward their home.

For this report, LendingTree commissioned an online survey through experience management firm Qualtrics of 1,006 parents with kids aged 18 or younger. The survey ran from April 8 through April 15, 2021.

As the market continues to go strong, LendingTree’s study found that a whopping 64 percent of parents are considering selling their home in order to try and find the dream home they may have missed before.

Here are the numbers:

Most parents wish they had a larger kitchen, at 23 percent of survey respondents. After that, the things parents most wanted to change was their amount of outdoor space (14 percent) and their home’s location (11 percent), all somewhat predictable factors given the pandemic’s impact on how people live and have come to see their homes more as a sanctuary.

Broken down by gender, dads showed a stronger preference for a larger kitchen (26 percent of dads compared to 17 percent of moms), while moms showed a greater desire to change the overall layout of their home (13 percent of moms compared to 7 percent of dads).

More than 1 in 5 parents reported that they feel frustrated about their home on a daily basis, adding stress to their lives. In total, 64 percent of parents said their lives would be less stressful if they could eliminate the pain points of their home. More dads felt their home’s pain points weighing on them at 72 percent, while just 54 percent of moms said removing their home’s pain points would reduce their stress.

A sizable portion of parents have called in the professionals for their home, with 42 percent reporting they’ve used designers or professional organizers. Another 25 percent of parents stated that they would like to use these kinds of professional services to help with their home’s pain points.

Staying at home for most of the year has resulted in parents increasing their spending on home decor too — 51 percent of parent homeowners said they spent more money than usual on home decor within the last year. For 35 percent of parents, those costs added up to at least $1,000.

When it comes to sharing the true cost of those home decor expenses, dad was guilty more often than mom: 79 percent of dads said they’ve purchased home items and hid their true cost, while 50 percent of moms did the same.

Inman Select | BY LILLIAN DICKERSON | May 07, 2021

4 Tips to Maximize the Sale of Your House

Homeowners ready to make a move are definitely in a great position to sell today. Housing inventory is incredibly low, driving up buyer competition. This gives homeowners leverage to sell for the best possible terms, and it’s fueling a steady rise in home prices.

In such a hot market, houses are selling quickly. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), homes are typically on the market for just 18 short days. Despite the speed and opportunity for sellers, there are still steps you can take to prep your house to shine so you get the greatest possible return.

1. Make Buyers Feel at Home

One of the ways to make this happen is to take time to declutter. Pack away any personal items like pictures, awards, and sentimental belongings. The more neutral and tidy the space, the easier it is for a buyer to picture themselves living there. According to the 2021 Profile of Home Staging by NAR:

“82% of buyers’ agents said staging a home made it easier for a buyer to visualize the property as a future home.”

Not only will your house potentially attract the attention of more buyers and likely sell quickly, but the same report also notes:

“Eighteen percent of sellers’ agents said home staging increased the dollar value of a residence between 6% and 10%.”

As Jessica Lautz, Vice President of Demographics and Behavior Insights for NAR, says:

“Staging a home helps consumers see the full potential of a given space or property…It features the home in its best light and helps would-be buyers envision its various possibilities.”

2. Keep It Clean

On top of making an effort to declutter, it’s important to keep your house neat and clean. Before a buyer stops by, be sure to pick up toys, make the beds, and wash the dishes. This is one more way to reduce the number of things that can distract a buyer from the appeal of the home.

Ensure your home smells fresh and clean as well. Buyers will remember the smell of your house, and according to the same report from NAR, the kitchen is one of the most important rooms of the house to focus on if you want to attract more buyers.

3. Give Buyers Access

Buyers are less likely to make an offer on your house if they aren’t able to easily schedule a time to check it out. If your home is available anytime, that opens up more opportunities for multiple buyers to go from curious to eager. It also allows buyers on tight schedules to still get in to see your house.

While health continues to be a great concern throughout the country, it’s important to work with your agent to find the best safety measures and digital practices for your listing. This will drive visibility and create access options that also keep everyone in the process safe.

4. Price It Right

Even in a sellers’ market, it’s crucial to set your house at the right price to maximize selling potential. Pricing your house too high is actually a detriment to the sale. The goal is to drive high attention from competing buyers and let bidding wars push the final sales price up.

Work with your trusted real estate professional to determine the best list price for your house. Having an expert on your side in this process is truly essential.

So…,

If you want to sell on your terms, in the least amount of time, and for the best price, today’s market sets the stage to make that happen. Contact a local real estate professional today to determine the best ways to maximize the sale of your house this year.

Stocks or Home Ownership: Which is Better?

A recent Survey of Consumer Finances study released by the Federal Reserve reveals the net worth of homeowners is forty times greater than that of renters. If you’re wondering if homeownership is a good investment, the study clearly answers that question, and the answer is yes.

Do Americans believe a home is a better investment than stocks?

In a post on the Liberty Street Economics blog, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York notes that 93.3% of Americans believe buying a home is definitely or probably a better investment than buying stocks.

93% of Americans Believe a Home Is a Better Investment Than Stocks | Keeping Current Matters
93% of Americans Believe a Home Is a Better Investment Than Stocks | Keeping Current Matters

Here’s how the results break down:The survey also shows a wide range of reasons why Americans feel that way (respondents were able to pick more than one answer):

Bottom Line

The data show how strongly Americans believe in homeownership as an investment. That belief is warranted. The Liberty Street Economics blog put it best by saying:

“Housing represents the largest asset owned by most households and is a major means of wealth accumulation, particularly for the middle class.”

4 Things to Do to Update Your Home Before You Sell

If you have a home of your own, you already know how to think like a buyer. You know buyers look for a home that’s structurally sound, with modern amenities and conveniences that fit their lifestyle. If you look at your home through a buyer’s eyes, you can anticipate what will appeal to their tastes and fill their needs. This sometimes means updating certain areas of your home to ensure it stands out in the market. Here are several things you can do to make your home more valuable to buyers:

Update the Kitchen

You may wish to resurface your kitchen cabinets in a lighter color to provide a brighter, more appealing look. New hardware on cabinets can also help to improve the general appearance of your kitchen. Simple home improvements, such as a new backsplash or faucet, can help to modernize your kitchen area without accumulating a great deal of construction expenses. Since kitchens see a lot of use, you may want to replace flooring to give the room a fresher look.

Freshen Up Bathrooms

Bathrooms also see a great deal of use in homes. Moisture and humidity can cause floors, ceilings and fixtures to look old and unattractive. A fresh coat of paint, a new vanity and better lighting can give the room a more modern look. Consider new shelving for grooming items, towels and other frequently used items.

Pay Attention to Your Home’s Exterior

Check that your siding, gutters and roofing are all in good condition to put your property in the best possible light for potential buyers. Prune trees and shrubs for a well maintained appearance, paying close attention to your front entryway. A fresh color on the door, a flowerbed or a new railing can help to make your home look more inviting.

Update Your Appliances

Buyers consider not only the cost of the property itself, but also how much it will cost to update appliances and critical home systems. If your HVAC is more than 15 years old, consider replacing it with a more efficient model that will help to save the new buyer money. Inspect your kitchen appliances for wear and tear; new appliances can reassure buyers that they won’t have to spend money on replacements in the near future.

If you think strategically about what will make your home most appealing to buyers, you can avoid unnecessary expenses and choose the improvements that create the greatest impact. Real estate experts find that these four features can make a home more desirable for prospective buyers and can garner a higher sale price and a faster closing.

Don’t Sell on Your Own Just Because It’s a Sellers’ Market

In a sellers’ market, some homeowners might be tempted to try to sell their house on their own (known as For Sale By Owner, or FSBO) instead of working with a trusted real estate professional. When the inventory of homes for sale is as low as it is today, buyers are eager to snatch up virtually any house that comes to market. This makes it even more tempting to FSBO. As a result, some sellers think selling their house will be a breeze and see today’s market as an opportunity to FSBO. Let’s unpack why that’s a big mistake and may actually cost you more in the long run.

According to the Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers published by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), 41% of homeowners who tried to sell their house as a FSBO did so to avoid paying a commission or fee. In reality, even in a sellers’ market, selling on your own likely means you’ll net a lower profit than when you sell with the help of an agent.

The NAR report explains:

FSBOs typically sell for less than the selling price of other homes; FSBO homes sold at a median of $217,900 in 2020 (up from $200,000 in 2019), and still far lower than the median selling price of all homes at $242,300. Agent-assisted homes sold for a median of $295,000…Sellers who began as a FSBO, then ended up working with an agent, received 98 percent of the asking price, but had to reduce their price the most before arriving at a final listing price.”

Don’t Sell on Your Own Just Because It’s a Sellers’ Market | Keeping Current Matters

When the seller knew the buyer, that amount was even lower, coming in at $176,700. That’s a lot of money to risk losing when you FSBO – far more than what you’d save on commission or other fees. Despite the advantages sellers have in today’s market, it’s still crucial to have the support of an expert to guide you through the process. Real estate professionals are trained negotiators with a ton of housing market insights that average homeowners may never have. An agent’s expertise can alleviate much of the stress of selling your house and help you close the best possible deal when you do.

Bottom Line

If you’re ready to sell your house this year and you’re considering doing so on your own, be sure to think through that decision carefully. Odds are, you stand to gain the most by working with a knowledgeable and experienced real estate agent. Contact a local professional to learn more about how a trusted advisor can help you, especially in today’s market.

Keeping Current Matters, April 2021

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