Miami real estate news and information

Archive for the 'SELLER’S ADVICE' Category

5 Reasons to Hire a Realtor

If you’re thinking of buying or selling a home, there’s plenty to think about. A real estate professional can make it easier to help navigate from start to finish. Here are five reasons you might want to hire a Realtor…

1. PAPERWORK – There are lots of rules, regulations and disclosures involved in a real estate transaction and it’s helpful to have someone on your team that knows the ins and outs and who’s able to look out for you. If you’re buying, we will gather all the information and prepare the offer, make sure there are no surprises in the contract and look out for your best interests. If you’re selling, we sift through any offers that come in and make sure you’re getting the best outcome for you.

2. EXPERIENCE – Working with a local realtor who has dealt with buying and selling homes in the area you want to buy or sell in is invaluable. You need someone who knows the area, understands the market, can navigate through unexpected surprises (yes-they happen), and who has a rapport with other realtors in the area. We have been part of the local Miami real estate community for over 15 years combined and are well versed in all there is to know and help you.

3. NEGOTIATIONS – This is a key factor in a real estate transaction. Of course, we help get the best price we can for you. What’s also important is having someone on your team who is able to help keep a transaction from falling apart after inspections or an appraisal. As Realtors, we do our best to ensure that you are able to sell or buy your home.

4. PRICING – A Realtor knows the value of local properties and we can help you establish a fair value when buying or selling a home. It’s important to get the most value for our buyers or sellers, based on the local market.

5. UNDERSTANDING MARKET CONDITIONS – The market is constantly changing. It’s helpful to have a professional who knows the market conditions and can easily explain them to you.

Many people won’t hire a Realtor because they think it benefits them in the long run. A Realtor is there to help you and to represent you. Often times, a Realtor can get you a better price and will also make sure there are no surprises in a contract or throughout the buying or selling process. The Restivo Team works diligently to take care of their clients and would love to chat with you about your needs. Contact the Restivo Hechtman Team today to get started.

 

Source of Chart: Keeping Current Matters

 

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Biggest Mistakes Sellers Make

We see a lot of homes while working with our buyers and sellers, and there’s a few mistakes sellers tend to make…Price, Marketing and Condition. A seller needs to price the home correctly, the home needs to be in good condition and it must be marketed in order to reach the most potential buyers.

alextphoto-com-restivo-6330-sw-107th-st-twilights-1-webLet’s begin with PRICE. Most of us think we have the best home out there, and though it may be worth a whole lot to you, it’s important the home be priced where the market dictates it should sell. You need to know market trends, what’s recently sold in your area and what’s currently for sale in your area. You don’t want to be the priciest house in the neighborhood, because it will take a long time to sell. Buyers are savvy and have access to loads of information online and they will know about every home in the area they are looking for. The home needs to be competitively priced for a quick turnaround. We will help you run the numbers and compare similar homes in your area in order to determine a price for selling your home.

Next, let’s move to MARKETING. It’s extremely important for your home to be marketed everywhere it can be in order to maximize the exposure and let as many buyers know it’s available to them. The marketing starts with great photos. The photos are the first impression for the buyer and many times are the determining factor for whether or not they want to make an appointment to see a home. We bring in professional photographers to get the best shots of a home and use them in all our marketing pieces. Not only are pictures important but so is how marketing pieces are worded. We like to create intrigue and make a buyer feel like your home is THE one for them.

The Restivo Hechtman Team markets your home in many different ways- thru Christies Luxury Real Estate, the EWM Mailer, the Miami Herald, the New York Times, via our blog on MiamiRealEstateCafe.com, on EWM.com, and thru social media like Facebook and Instagram. We have International reach and a wide sphere of influence both locally and internationally.

alextphoto-com-restivo-6330-sw-107th-st-14-webFinally, the CONDITION of your home. Our homes are where we’re most comfortable and where we don’t have to put on a front for the outside world…unless you’re selling that home. We have to live a little differently when the house is on the market because it needs to be ready to be shown at the drop of a hat. When a buyer sees something they like, time is of the essence and you want to get them into your home as soon as possible. The home needs to be clean, smell good (especially important if there are pets), and things need to be put away. If you need help preparing your home, we enjoy assisting you with staging and organizing ideas. Essentially, it should look like a show home. Now-that’s not always easy with everyone’s busy lives, but the cleaner, less cluttered it looks will make the home show better and will allow buyers to envision themselves living there.

There are many keys to selling your home, but these three are important. The Restivo Hechtman Team can help you with these and other aspects of selling, and would love the opportunity to sit down and discuss listing your home for sale. Give us a call today and let’s get the ball rolling!

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Adjusted Square Footage … What It Means

If you’re grappling with how to determine home value, based on SQUARE FOOTAGE,  you’re not alone.

One of the most frequently questions our clients ask us is “How does this property compare to that, as far as price is concerned, based on square footage?

Knowing what comparable properties are LISTED and SELL for, helps.  But sometimes the square footage is   “adjusted” … sometimes “total” …. and sometimes “living”.

Realtors make every effort to calculate property value based on “Adjusted Square Footage”  –  at least in Miami Dade.  It can be confusing though, because the tax rolls and the property appraiser’s office and the MLS often differ as to the information shown  …  (and sometimes the  is inaccurate) …  Sometimes “adjusted square footage” isn’t shown, but instead “living area” and/or “total area” is).

In  Miami Dade we tend to use “ADJUSTED SQUARE FOOTAGE” in the Multiple Listing System (the MLS).   Many of the other internet sites (Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, etc) feed from the MLS.

“Adjusted square foot” measurements combine ground floor interior spaces & living areas, along with a percentage of each of these: the second story,  the garage, & any covered patio/porch/carport areas.

THE BREAKDOWN FOR DETERMINING ADJUSTED SQUARE FOOTAGE IS:

100% –  main house under air (1st floor)

80% – main house under air (2nd floor) … And this is because second story construction only costs roughly 80% of that of the ground floor costs to build.

66%  – Florida room/enclosed patios or additions.

50% – garage … again based on construction costs relative to the building costs associated with the main house.

50% –  laundry room

33% – covered patios/porches with overhangs.

 

***Screen-covered pool areas would not  be included (unless they had a solid roof).

***Sheds are not included.

 

I hope this helps clarify adjusted square footage .  If you have other questions or want more information, please call us …  The Restivo Hechtman Team at EWM Realty Int’l  305 793-1365  305-632-0164

(Appraisals for loan purposes  … that is another topic …for another blog).

“LIVING AREA” (air conditioned)

“ADJUSTED” (a percentage of  various covered spaces)

” TOTAL AREA” (everything).

 

 

 

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6 Great Tips to Eliminate Bad Odors

No matter how beautifully staged and photographed your house is, buyers will be off-put by “odors”.   Here’s how to avoid that turn-off.

These tips can eliminate bad odors before your open houses or showing appointments (THEY REALLY DO WORK!):

1. Paint fumes?    Cut an onion in half,  place each peeled half on opposite ends of the room before painting.  Once the onion absorbs the odors, just toss it out.

2. Pet odors?   Spray an enzyme on the stains, and let it soak into the rug/underlay/and floor.  After an hour, absorb it up using microfiber towels.  If that doesn’t work, remove the rug or carpet, or change that section of flooring.

odor-blog-post-pic3. Lingering cooking smells?   Turn on the ventilator hood before you start cooking.  (… a “fresh linen candle” is one of my favorite odor eaters, too).  Close whatever doors you can (to the rest of the house while you’re cooking), in order to contain the cooking odors.   AND HERE IS THE BEST TIP:   Fill a shallow dish with white wine vinegar and coffee grinds (and leave it on the countertop overnight).  It will absorb all sorts of cooking smells.  (I tried this after pan frying fresh fish yesterday …. It really does WORK!)

4.  Last night’s dinner?   Remove the trash bag.  Open the windows.  Turn up the AC & crank the fans.  (And spray the trash receptacle with Febreeze)

5.  Garbage disposal smelling funky?   Put a couple lemon (lime or orange) slices into the disposal, add ice, white vinegar or mouthwash. Turn on the faucet, and grind away. (Tried and true!)

6.  Bathroom needing freshening up?  White wine vinegar in the toilet bowl  (works wonders) … and  a little bit of Pine Sol poured into the toilet-bowl-brush-base will work too.

Contemplating moving or selling or staging your house?  Call us!  The Restivo Hechtman Team Sells Miami ….   Vicki Restivo 305 793-1365 or  Alexandra Hechtman 305 632-0164   EWM Realty International

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Spectacularly Updated Deering Bay Condo with Views of the Marina … Under Contract Although Not Listed for Sale

With gorgeous views of the Grand Marina in Deering Bay,  this spacious 3 bedroom condo in  “Venice”  was perfect for our buyer… although it wasn’t  listed for sale.

The current owner meticulously remodeled it  (removing walls to create a stunning ‘open concept’ contemporary home) … and everything about it was  ‘right’, except that  it wasn’t for sale.

venice marina view

BUT … sometimes that doesn’t matter.

Warmest congratulations to our buyer, who is officially under contract, and closing in mid May… and congratulations (too) to the seller, who is thrilled as well.

If you are looking for something specific that isn’t on the market, please let us know.  We may well be able to find you just what you’re looking for!  The Restivo Hechtman Team at EWM Realty International :  Vicki Restivo 305 793-1365   …   Alexandra Hechtman 305 632-0164 [email protected] …   MiamiRealEstateCafe.com  … your real estate blog and website.

 

venice dining livingDeering Bay Yacht & Country Club has a number of options for  golf, tennis & yachting – as well as for social membership.   Deering is one of Coral Gable’s finest gated communities, offering a refined lifestyle for those wanting a condo, townhome, or single family estate home in Coral Gables….  within a variety of price categories.  Right now there are 25 condos, townhomes & single family homes listed for sale, each with different views, layouts and styles. Those actively listed have asking prices from just under $1 million upward close to $3 million … A great place to live … A great time to buy!

Venice  is a charming complex …. overlooking Deering Bay’s Grand Marina ….   It’s wide wrap-around terraces, high ceilings, sliding glass doors, floor to ceiling windows & tranquil views of palms, water & yachts (and the magnificence with which it was renovated!)  made it perfect.   Buyer and seller both benefited  …  Our warmest congratulations to both parties!

VENICE KITCHEN

The Restivo Hechtman Team SOLD  2 units in Deering this month ….  So, whether you are thinking of buying or selling, we would love to make that happen for you!   Call anytime …. 305 793-1365 or 305 632-0164

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It’s a one shot deal … how to sell your house to a prospective buyer

Often, you get one shot to impress a buyer.  Buyers make their decision to buy (or not),  within a few seconds of arriving at the front door.

Painting, pressure cleaning,  fixing what needs fixing, installing new fans,  landscaping … those quick fixes tend to pay for themselves in spades … in terms of price and days on the market.  And that’s true even when the buyer fully intends to renovate or update.

By pressure cleaning, painting, changing out fans, and adding some landscaping, a 4 bedroom home that the Restivo Hechtman team listed in Palmetto Bay at 15425 SW 89th Ct went under contract within weeks,  just shy of the full  $590,000 list price.

IMG_7688

Readying it wasn’t really much of a challenge (although it could have been, with the owner living out of state and the house being tenant occupied).  The rapport  between seller and tenant made  spiffing  it up pretty easy …. and if these tenants ever need a reference from me, I will happily give them one!   Spiffing up (like staging) can easily increase the sales price and shorten the number of days a house is listed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Congratulations on Selling Your House ! Full Price Offer … one week on the market!

Warmest congratulations to OUR SELLERS, whose house just closed this week.

CIMG8275

Getting a full price offer within days of listing this Miami house was the goal …  The fact that this property was so beautifully redone and tastefully updated,  and was immaculately  “staged” certainly helped encourage solid offers.   Our sellers chose to list it at the upper end of the recent relevant comparable sales  …  and this house sold for cash on the first day of showings.   So much hinges on marketing…. and so much is a result of staging!

Congratulations to our  amazing sellers ….  from the Restivo Hechtman Team at EWM Realty Int’l !

www.MiamiRealEstateCafe.com   Our Real Estate Blog and Website for Buyers and Sellers  [email protected]

 

 

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Bidding Wars are BACK … How To Win The Bidding War

Bidding wars are back … and with property in Miami becoming scarce,  bidding wars can be tough to win.

There’s not much inventory to choose from,  and buyers  are finding themselves competing against one other  for the good stuff …

Offering full list price isn’t necessarily enough  …

photo - wynns

More often than not,  I find that personal connections tend to sway decisions.   If you want the house be personable, and take whatever steps you can to connect with the seller.

We asked this family to write a note, that we’d submit along with their offer … and we asked that they Read the rest of this entry »

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Worst Offers Ever

Occasionally we get offers that are barely more than just a waste of time and energy …  real messes.

I’m looking at 2,  right now.

On one,  there are four typos in the property address alone.  On the other, the wrong seller is named as the owner. On both  there are missing pages, missing addendums,  contradictory terms,  timeframes that don’t work …  One doesn’t allow the buyer time to get financing … It’s unsigned, undated…  There is no price…  And on the other, the mortgage terms indicate a 30 year loan with an interest rate  of 60%.   Really?   And the agent says “Oops … sorry …  I’ll text you the price in a minute … I don’t know.”

As massacred and  hodgepodged as these two contracts are,  we will meet with our sellers and go over them.

Offers like these are so easy to reject – especially in today’s real estate market, where multiple offers are the norm …

And, each of these homes are receiving multiple offers.

Buyer’s agents who are hands-on and competent  are the ones who get their clients to the closing table.

I feel so badly for these buyers.  Both families love these homes ….   Neither has any idea they are working with someone so incompetent.

Good listing agents oversee both sides of the transaction.  On either of these, we will do that (and more!).   If our sellers wish to counter, we’ll make alterations, corrections, add what’s missing,  and then re-submit these offers to the buyer’s agents …  We will be ultra hands-on throughout ( the loan application process,  inspections,  insurance, title, survey, appraisal)    to make sure that no one drops the ball … and see to it that each of these actually get to the closing table.

If you’re looking to buy, sell or lease … and need an experienced Realtor to work with … please call us:  The Restivo Hechtman Team at EWM Realty International   Vicki Restivo 305 793-1365 [email protected]   …  Alexandra Hechtman 305 632-0164 [email protected]

 

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The Price of Real Estate Experience – WSJ says $25,000

“Can you put a price on experience? In real estate, you can. It is about $25,000 for the average house” according to one Wall Street Journal article.

The price of real estate experience  … and  the difference between a rookie and a seasoned real estate professional …  can mean a 12% higher home sales price on average.  

If you’re contemplating moving or relocating, we would be delighted to assist you … The Restivo Hechtman team will help you sell for the best terms possible … and we can refer you to other  top real estate experts elsewhere throughout  the world … whether you’re moving across country or internationally.

The Restivo Hechtman Team at EWM Realty, International

Vicki Restivo 305 793-1365 [email protected]

Alexandra Hechtman 305 632-0164 [email protected]

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