It's Getting Better!

Many, many real estate experts are saying that the recovery in real estate has begun, particularly in North Atlanta. In many areas there is only a three month supply of homes on the market, which constitutes a seller's market. And the spring buying season is almost upon us!

If you are thinking about putting your house on the market, here are some tips to get your home sold quickly and for top dollar.

Make sure your home is in move-in condition. Buyers in today's market are picky and do not want a project house. Your house needs to be in excellent condition, remodeled and already updated. The top finished projects buyers want to see are, as always, kitchen and bath makeovers. Buyers today want to move right in and settle down---not spend six months and a lot of money on contractors.

And if you do not have the budget to make big changes, find a less expensive way to get the same effect. Old laminate countertops can be painted. A colorful new rug can cover worn wood floors. Give your floor and wall tile a facelift with grout stain (an easy do-it-yourself project) to cover up dingy old grout. Appliance paint can give new life to an old refrigerator or dishwasher. If you can't replace your carpeting, have it professionally cleaned and deodorized. Consider replacing your old glass shower doors with a stylish fabric shower curtain.

More Inexpensive Updates:
~~Add a tile backsplash in the kitchen for a burst of new style.
~~Paint. This is a quick and inexpensive way to refresh a room
~~Replace your hardware---drawer pulls, electrical switch plates, door knobs, faucets. Switch from brass (so 80's!) to nickel or antique bronze.

~~Replace a dated bathroom mirror with an inexpensive framed one, or build your own frame with strips of molding and rosettes.
~~Clear out the clutter. This costs you nothing and makes your rooms seem larger.
~~Don't ignore your yard and the value of the first impression. Put in fresh mulch or pinestraw, trim the bushes, and have a blooming plant by your front door.
~~Clean, clean, clean! If the house is spotlessly clean, prospective buyers assume it has been well cared for.

Make your house bright and cheerful.
Bring the outdoors in with lots of light and windows. Remove old blinds and window treatments and replace with inexpensive sheer curtains. Update an older home with new ceiling lights and under-cabinet lighting.

Meet Christi Trombetti

We are excited to introduce a new feature to our newsletter---a column written by our friend and local Realtor, Christi Trombetti. Christi has been a professional Realtor since 2002, selling homes full time since 2007, and works from the East Cobb office of Atlanta Communities Real Estate Brokerage. She will share with us her thoughts and updates on what is going on in real estate. We will all eventually sell our current home; her tips will help you make smart decisions about what is probably your largest investment, your home.

Where Are All The Good Deals?
By Christi Trombetti

I have been asked that question several times in the past few months. First time buyers, investors, and move up buyers alike are wondering what happened to "all the good deals". As for sale inventory is shrinking, the housing market is becoming more balanced and homes are selling faster and for more money than even a year ago. It appears that the "bottom" has passed. Unfortunately for deal seekers, it's hard to recognize that until we are again on the upswing.

Local statistics show that the foreclosure numbers in Cobb County are down 33.4% this year. I wonder if it's because fewer homeowners are in distress or if the banks are waiting longer to foreclose. I believe that banks are working with homeowners on short sales where possible.

In addition, many homeowners who would consider a move are still underwater on their mortgages and have decided to continue to wait, especially now that the market is showing improvement signs. Whatever the reasons, right now, there are not enough homes to meet the needs of many buyers across all price ranges.

As always, homes that are in the best condition and have been updated over time to today's cosmetic standards will sell the fastest (as long as the price is correct). We will see if the Spring brings enough inventory to meet the buyer needs. All real estate is local, so if you have questions about a specific area, it's best to call me or another full-time Realtor that you trust.

Our Clients Are Telling Us

Bruce in Marietta is very satisfied with his new carpet. "The carpet is great, the Installers were wonderful, everybody was very helpful. I love the carpet and am looking forward to many years of enjoying the carpet." Allen in Roswell says his new wood floors are "perfect in every way" and the Installers are great! And Bob and Mary in Marietta love their new carpet. Thank you, everyone, and keep spreading the word about your great experience with Enhance Floors & More.