How 2016 Technology Has Changed Your Home Search Forever

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scrolling through mobile phoneWhen was the last time you hopped in your car to start your home search? Most home buyers today just pick up their phones to instantly view properties all around the country — no car required.

Each year, new tech changes the way that we interact with the world. Here are just a few of the ways 2016 technology has changed the way buyers find real estate.

You Can Access Anything On the Go

Your home search doesn’t stop while you’re out and about. Today’s technology has made it easier to access information when you need it. While you’re waiting in line at the store or idly scrolling through your phone, you can find articles about the home buying process on social media, see listings on a mobile search app, or check commute times from homes you’re considering.

Video Tours Have Evolved

Listing photos are incredibly helpful for home buyers who are looking online for properties. But now, video tours make deciding on homes even easier. Instagram, Facebook Live, and even Snapchat are just a few of the many platforms that you can use to find video tours.

“Smart” Home Features are Becoming a Priority

Remember earlier this year when the Pokémon Go mobile app was released? Proximity to a “Pokéstop” — a point of interest where players could collect items for the game — was listed as a feature in property descriptions, at least for a little while. The Pokémon Go craze is just one of many instances where technology is becoming a priority in and near homes that buyers are considering.

home with smart featuresToday’s home buyers can purchase smart home security cameras, install programmable thermostats, and invest in the security systems of tomorrow. Green homes, energy-efficient appliances, and home energy monitoring systems help homeowners save money. With the right mobile apps, your smartphone can control just about anything in your home, from lights to locks.

One Thing That Will Never Change…

The Internet is saturated with information, both good and bad. But one thing you can’t glean from technology is the ability to navigate the complex real estate process. Even with all the innovations in technology, you’ll still need an experienced real estate agent to help you buy a home.

Are you searching for a home in our area? We’ll help you find just what you’re looking for and handle every detail of your transaction. Contact us and let’s get started.



Downsizing Your Home? Use These Tips to Plan Your Move

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kitchen and dining roomMaybe the thought of moving to a smaller, low-maintenance home has only briefly crossed your mind, or maybe you’re seriously considering downsizing. But before you trade your too-large house in for, say, a cozy condo downtown, there are a few things to consider.

Downsizing requires quite a bit of planning: You may need to figure out what to keep and what to discard, choose between the love seat and the sofa for your new living room, and determine which furniture pieces can serve multiple functions.

Here are a few downsizing tips to help you prepare to sell your current home.

Start Reducing Your Possessions Now

The sooner you are able to get rid of furniture, household items, and knickknacks you no longer use or need, the better off you’ll be. When you do decide to sell your home, you will thank yourself for spending a few hours a week decluttering now rather than waiting to do everything all at once.

If You Can, Sell Instead of Discard

Many homeowners choose to downsize to spend less money on a mortgage and more money on fun experiences. If you are able to start decluttering weeks in advance, you will have the time to sell unwanted possessions and save the money for future vacations. Consider hosting a yard sale, posting items for sale online, or having high-end items appraised.

Have a Plan

notepad with wadded paperTo avoid getting overwhelmed by all the work involved in downsizing, form a plan to keep your stress at bay. Consider these planning tips:

  • Make a checklist of possessions you cannot live without in your new home.
  • Create a checklist of wants and needs for your new home.
  • Determine which items you can pack now and which items you need to keep handy.
  • Start packing your nonessential belongings.

Get Started by Working with a Real Estate Expert

One of the biggest mistakes home sellers make, whether or not they’re downsizing, is not hiring a real estate professional to make the most of their investment. An agent’s experience and knowledge will help you sell your home for the most money possible, allowing you to use the proceeds to purchase a smaller home.

Are you thinking about downsizing? Start the process by requesting a market analysis for your property. Contact us to learn more.



Fall in Love this November on Hilton Head

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Red vintage bicycle with basket and flowers lleaning against wooden fence at beach.

You will fall in love with Hilton Head Island in November.  The pace of the Island is relaxed, dinner reservations are easy, off-season rates apply, temperatures are wonderful and the beaches are beautiful.  The bright sunny days and clear night skies make this one of the favorite months by Islanders and Visitors alike.

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The Essentials for Entertaining Big in a Small Home

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homeowner setting dining tableWith the holiday season approaching, many homeowners are starting to plan get-togethers with friends or family. While entertaining can be more of a challenge in a smaller home, it’s not impossible to host a memorable dinner party with your loved ones if you’re working with limited space.

Here are a few tips for throwing a large dinner party in a small area.

Before Guests Arrive, Clean and Clear Your Home

You don’t have to put as much effort into cleaning and decluttering as if you were selling a home; the basics will do.

Put away any unnecessary furniture, home décor, and kitchen appliances before the dinner party. Clean and dust the rooms that guests will visit: bathrooms, the kitchen, and the dining area. If you have pets, don’t forget to vacuum upholstery and stash toys or the litter box out of sight.

Get Creative with Guest Seating

You likely don’t keep a dozen matching chairs in storage just for dinner parties. Show off your creativity by relocating chairs, stools, benches, or ottomans currently in your home around the dinner table.

appetizers on raised food standsMaximize Your Table Space

Invest in a tiered platter for dinner parties. Raising the serving plates gives the appearance of more space on your counters and tables and keeps your serving stations from looking cramped.

To further free up space on your dining room table, keep the centerpiece decorations to a minimum. Instead, hang decorations from your walls or ceiling to maximize your space.

Trying to Make the Most of Your Space?

If you’re downsizing but still want to entertain friends and family in your new home, there are many ways to make the most of your space while still enjoying memorable occasions with your loved ones. As real estate experts, we can share downsizing tips and help you find a home that’s just the right size. Contact us to learn more.



Back to Business at Hilton Head Properties

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Sales_PaceLast week we sold 112 properties in the Hilton Head area. This was 1 week after Hurricane Matthew turned 40,000 trees into piles of debris.  While some think Matthew stopped all Hilton Head real estate sales activity in the area, sales were down only 25% over last year during the same week.  Here’s why….

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Hilton Head Market Update – September 2016

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Hilton Head Island Homes – September 2016

September_2016Home pendings in the month of September were up across the board.  The stable inventories on Hilton Head Island are holding prices in check right now, but keep in mind it is an Island that is 97% developed.  If you are a buyer, negotiation is firming up for properly priced properties.  For the seller, their is good news as the number of months in supply(your competition) dropped in almost all sectors.

Pending_Home_Sales_on_Island_September_2016_001

Hilton Head Island Villas – September 2016

We are seeing investors finally moving back into the Hilton Head villa market with the low prices, higher vacation rental income potential and low interest rates.  Cash flow has never been better on these villas that offer short term rental opportunity.

Villa_sales_on_Hilton_Head_Island_September_2016

Hilton Head Island Lots – September 2016

Until it costs the same to buy a lot and build a home as buying an existing home, lots will continue to offer compelling prices.  Some of the lots offered around the Island offer some incredible locations at some incredible prices.  Property owners with a lot for sale next door should explore buying the adjacent land because builders are buying up these lots and building specs.

Lots_on_Hilton_Head_Island_September_2016

Ready to Explore the Hilton Head Market?

If you would like to start exploring Hilton Head Properties with us, please fill out the form below and pick your Hilton Head Properties agent.  They will start sending you the best buys in the area that match your needs.  Thank you.



A Hilton Head Welcome

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We dodged a bullet on Hilton Hilton Head Island with Hurricane Mathew! Working together it is is amazing how much we have accomplished in such a short time.  While we are picking up and mending our homes, many of our vacation properties and resorts will welcome you back once again.  If you need an update on your property, a repair made or want to find out more about what’s happening in the Hilton Head area, please let us know.

Hilton Head Property Owners

If you need work done on your Hilton Head property, we have a long list of vetted contractors and service providers that we would be happy to share.  We are hearing outrageous quotes for tree removal and deposits being made and workers not showing up.  Our contractors are local and you can call on them now or in the future.  We can also have them check the condition of your property.  Keep in mind, even vacant lots should be checked for leaning trees.

Hilton Head Community Updates

Many of the communities on Hilton Head Island have been posting updates on their community websites.  These communities include: Sea PinesPalmetto Dunes ShipyardHilton Head PlantationLong Cove, and Port Royal.  As well, openings around the Hilton Head area include:  Golf Course Openings, Fall Specials, Parks Reopened, and Vacationers Return.  Please check our facebook page for these daily updates.

Hilton Head Properties Realty and Rentals Update

Surprising enough, we have been busy this week showing property and writing contracts on Hilton Head Properties.  The good news is that the Hurricane did not slow down our buyers. We can’t wait to show you our awesome properties this fall!  Our rental company and crew did a fabulous job securing our vacation properties before and after the storm.  They are busy again helping guests book great vacation rentals.  The fall weather is wonderful and we hope you can make time to enjoy a long weekend or upcoming holiday with us.

 



5 Home Staging Mistakes That Frighten Buyers Away

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house with dark staircaseHalloween is just around the corner. For many homeowners, that means carving pumpkins, hanging up Halloween decorations, and stocking up on fun-sized candy. But if you’re a homeowner who is thinking about selling this fall season, you might be preparing your home for buyers instead of trick-or-treaters.

Home staging is a crucial part of home selling preparation. According to the National Association of REALTORS® 2015 Profile of Home Staging, 32% of buyers’ agents and 37% of sellers’ agents believe that a staged home increases the amount buyers are willing to pay up to 5%. On a $200,000 property, that’s $10,000!

But is your home effectively staged to sell? If you are preparing your home yourself, beware of these staging mistakes that scare away home buyers — and potentially thousands of dollars.

1. A Dark and Spooky Entryway

Your front entry is one of the first things buyers notice about your home. Peeling paint, deep shadows, and uninviting colors don’t create the best first impression. Turn your front entryway into a focal point by painting your door a bright color that complements your home.

cobwebs on dusty night stand2. Cobwebs in the Corners

At a showing, buyers are going to inspect virtually everything: light fixtures, closets, ceilings, you name it. Thoroughly clean your home from top to bottom (or hire a professional) to make it look like new. You can always ask a friend or neighbor to take an objective look at your home.

3. Startling Colors on Your Walls

The goal of home staging, besides selling your home for top dollar, is to help buyers visualize themselves living in your home. If you have bold, bright colors on your walls, switch to more neutral colors to appeal to all potential buyers.

4. Menacing Halloween Decorations

Staging your home for Halloween is fine in moderation. But remember, not all buyers will think the fake spiderwebs or rubber arms are festive. Unless the headless horseman himself is buying your home, it’s best to keep him out of your front yard.

standing in a long dark hallway5. Hovering Like a Ghost During Showings

How you present your home when it’s on the market goes hand-in-hand with home staging. Make your home available and make yourself scarce during showings. Potential buyers might find it creepy if the current homeowner is lurking somewhere in the shadows.

Thinking of Selling Your Home This Fall?

Selling your home doesn’t have to be scary. We have a wealth of home staging tips and home selling resources that will help you sell quickly and for top dollar. Contact us to learn more.



Welcome Back to Hilton Head Island

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Hilton Head, Community, Post MathewThe Hilton Head community is stronger than any Hurricane! We were welcomed back to the Island with residents waving and a welcome home sign.  In a matter of days, our first responders made it easy for us to start picking up our lives, yards, homes and businesses.  It’s amazing the progress that has been made in the last 7 days, but what is more incredible is the community we get to call home!   Read the rest of this entry



Tree Removal on Hilton Head Island

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Hilton Head Tree StoryIf you have a tree or trees to remove on you Hilton Head Property, we have listed below tree companies that can help you with your cleanup.  If you are unsure who’s responsibility for the removal, click here.  We have access to other contractors, please just let us know what you may need. Read the rest of this entry




Copyright © 2016 Hilton Head Real Estate. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: All content on this blog is my own opinion and should not be treated as fact or relied upon when purchasing or selling real estate.
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