Chances are you have gotten a postcard or phone call from a total stranger wanting to buy your house. For cash. Are these offers legit? Here’s some great info from realtor.com: Many homeowners are reporting that these “sell me your house!” requests are pouring in via phone calls and text messages, even if their number is unlisted. Owners are finding letters and notes left in their mailbox or slipped beneath their front door; the words “all cash!” often figure prominently. Residents even report that they’re receiving postcards with photos of their home and the words “I’m ready to buy your house!” Yup, someone stood outside and took a picture without their knowing it. Creepy!
Occasionally, these inquiries come from people who actually want to live in your home very, very much. Maybe they love the school district or your cozy front porch. By personally connecting with you, they might catch you at the right moment if you’re pondering a move. It’s how some people get a dream home when housing stock is in short supply.
More often, though, these inquiries are from real estate investors looking to flip your house for the largest possible profit. “This is actually a big problem right now,” says Cara Berkeley, a local realtor. “Because the local real estate market has experienced record-growth in property values and sales, there are a lot of investors on the market looking to shake out their next fix-and-flip. Since there is so much money to be made, they are very aggressive in their search for new homes to purchase—calling, leaving notes on doors, and even texting.”
So, who are these people, exactly? While some may actually intend to renovate the house then sell it, others are just hoping to buy low and sell high to make some quick, easy, effort-free cash.
“Most of these offers come from what the industry calls ‘wholesalers’ or ‘bird dogs,’” explains Bruce Ailion, with Re/Max Town & Country. “These are typically people who do not have the money to close on the home. They only seek to get it under contract and quickly sell it to someone else for more, never using any of their [own] money.”
These are the kind of tactics being taught in such courses that claim to help participants “become a real estate millionaire overnight!” The people who call your home are also likely to be the ones posting “we buy houses” flyers on power poles. “Title flipping for profit is one of their techniques,” Ailion explains. “A title flip will net a profit from a few thousand dollars to over a hundred thousand.”
While these offers may well be legal, not everyone views them as fair. They dangle the lure of a quick and convenient transaction, with cash landing in your bank account ASAP. However, “It would be very rare for one of these unsolicited buyers to offer a fair price for a property,” cautions Ailion. “Therefore, buyers should be very wary of these offers.” In fact, homeowners receiving these solicitations sometimes report being offered no more than 70% of their home’s market value.
The “bird dogs” behind these letters typically hope to find someone with a level of desperation or ignorance about the property’s actual value. Those are the ones who actually bite.
Granted, there are rare situations where this kind of offer might make sense. Say your home needs major work done. (Perhaps the foundation is cracked, or the roof is on its last legs.) Maybe you’d rather just get out of your house fast. This title-flipping scenario could save the day.
But for the vast majority of people, “It’s important to work with a reliable, knowledgeable real estate agent,” says Tami Bonnell, with EXIT Realty. That person can tell you the true value of your home, so you don’t lose a chunk of money, says Bonnell. “They can also respond to these inquiries on your behalf.”
Let’s not overlook how uncomfortable it can be to receive these unsolicited offers. It’s an annoying intrusion and makes some people feel as if they’re being stalked. “I received a call myself last week, and when I asked how they got my number, they said they found it attached to my parcel information,” says Berkeley, referring to the online databases that show who owns which lot. “I honestly don’t know how to avoid the privacy issue outside of blocking each individual call so they can’t reach out again.”
Bonnell says homeowners could post “private property,” “no trespassing,” or “no solicitation” signs. Still, the prospector will probably resort to contacting the homeowner by mail or email (unsubscribe if possible). “If they reach out by phone, most services allow blocking of unwanted callers,” she notes. Use it!
Spring is in the air, and we are ready to get outdoors! If your patio needs an update, think back in time. Retro patio furniture is fun and nostalgic, as well as being on trend in 2022. These are new furniture pieces made from stamped, powder-coated steel, same as they were many decades ago. Offered in a variety of vibrant retro colors, this patio furniture is available in dining sets, seating ensembles, and even those old-school gliders like the one grandma had on her porch.
WWOWT Wonderful World of Window Treatments
What Type of Decorator Fabrics Should I Use? When you are considering new window treatments, there are many decisions to make about the fabric and a huge array of choices. Some fabrics lend themselves to certain applications better than others. The two main categories of all decorator fabrics are natural and synthetic.
Natural Fabrics Cotton is the strongest fabric of the natural fibers. It dyes well, so there is a huge amount of colors and patterns available. It allows for airflow as it breathes well. Café curtains and less formal window treatments are often made of cotton.
Linen is stain resistant, but it wrinkles quite easily. It gives a shabby chic appearance to a room when using it as a window treatment on a decorative rod.
Silk is susceptible to sun damage, but it is a great investment as it is versatile with many different weights from which to choose. When using silk as a window treatment a liner can be added to make it more durable and resist sun damage.
Wool is a heavy natural fabric that will last for many years.
Synthetic Fabrics Rayon hangs well but it will shrink up in the summer with the humidity and let itself back down in the winter months with low humidity. If you love the look of rayon, a liner can be added to keep it at the same length year round.
Acrylic resists stains well and is sun-resistant too. It is often used as a blend with natural fabrics to add to its durability.
Nylon is super tough, stain proof and electricity proof and it wears well. Many homeowners choose nylon for its durability as window treatments.
Acetate is softer than some of the other synthetic fabrics and it resists wrinkles, making it a great choice for drapes.
How Much Does It Cost? A client was preparing her house to put on the market, and she needed a new kitchen floor. Most of her main level was hardwood floors, but she did not want to add more wood in the kitchen (the wood is site finished and she would have had to refinish everything so it all matched.) She chose a TruCor luxury vinyl tile -- Travertine Taupe. The large eat-in kitchen is almost 400 sq ft. Her new floor was a little over $4000 fully installed. And it is GORGEOUS!
I Was FLOORED By Enhance Amy in Atlanta writes: “They exceeded my expectations with their professionalism, quality of the workmanship, and their assistance with the design. Everyone I encountered was outstanding. This company is the best contractor that I have come in contact with.”
Thank you for the review, Amy. You and your family were great to work with. We hope you are loving your newly updated basement and all the entertaining we know you are doing! See TruCor