Why I Always use a Professional Photographer

Poor lighting, crooked lines, and awkward angles make listing photos look amateurish. But just how big of a difference do these flubs make? Photography pros share “good” and “bad” images that exemplify the rules of high-quality photos, along with tips for capturing the perfect picture. Here’s one example of an exterior.

Poor interior photos greatly affect the online impression of the quality of your home as well.

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Posted on March 14, 2018 at 5:03 pm
Kathy West | Category: Selling a Home | Tagged , , , ,

The Future of Real Estate as Baby Boomers Retire

What will happen when the Baby Boomers retire? For one thing, they’re keeping their homes longer than other generations… and it could be one factor (among many) that affects the housing shortage. But what about the years ahead? If you have multiple properties, you’ll want to read this.

FutureCast Forum member and wealth manager, Brian Evans, road-maps the opportunity for Delaware Statutory Trusts allowing landlords to divest, diversify and downsize in retirement.

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Posted on October 16, 2017 at 7:40 pm
Kathy West | Category: Market Statistics, Selling a Home

House flipping is back, with all its opportunities and risks

The trend of buying a fixer-upper, making some repairs and “flipping” to a new buyer quickly is making a return to real estate markets, years after the trend fell out of fashion with home buyers.

More than 6 percent of home sales last year were “flips”, according to a new report from Trulia. The real estate data website defines a flip as the selling of a home at least twice within a year.

That’s the highest number in a decade, before the real estate bubble burst and the financial crisis of 2008. So could the housing market flip out again?

“When you see flipping reach ten-year highs, economists like us start to worry a little bit.” Trulia’s Chief Economist Ralph McLaughlin told CNBC’s “On the Money” recently.

“We think it’s a little bit different this time ,” McLaughlin added, “because we think more flips are actually value-added improvements that investors are making to the house, rather than speculative flips which is basically someone buying and sitting on a home waiting for the prices to rise.”

But like the mid 2000’s, home prices are rising. “Price increases in 2016 were the quickest in about 3 to 4 years,” McLaughlin said, adding that gives flippers a potential layer of protection.

A 'bank-owned' sign sits outside a foreclosed home in the Mountain's Edge neighborhood of Las Vegas, Nevada, in 2010.

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Posted on February 6, 2017 at 8:14 pm
Kathy West | Category: Buying a Home, Selling a Home | Tagged , ,

Holidays are a Great Time to Sell

Watch the video

House exterior in winter

Get a jump on all the competition by selling during the holidays! Here are 10 reasons why now is a great time!

Posted on December 5, 2016 at 8:31 pm
Kathy West | Category: Selling a Home

Joanna Gaines of HGTV’s ‘Fixer Upper’ Reveals 5 Top Home-Staging Mistakes

One of the keys to a successful home sale, says Jo, is home staging, where you arrange your furniture and décor (or some rented stuff) in a way that entices buyers to make an offer. Yet home staging is a highly misunderstood practice, one where home sellers can easily make missteps that can undermine these efforts.

Fixer Uppers -5-of-8-1-1-e1476629344482-628x354

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Posted on October 23, 2016 at 6:46 pm
Kathy West | Category: Selling a Home

6 Home-Selling Myths You Need to Stop Believing Immediately

When you get ready to sell your home, you might very well have a false sense of security. After all, you got through the hard part of buying. Now all you have to do is call a Realtor, put your home on the market, and wait for the buyers to line up. Selling will be a breeze, right?

Of course not! Selling a home is as much a science as buying one is. And lots of people who’ve been there before will want to tell you how it’s done. Beware of these (well-meaning) storytellers, and don’t fall for some of the most common misconceptions about selling your home.


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Posted on October 23, 2016 at 6:27 pm
Kathy West | Category: Selling a Home

Home Sales Expected to Increase Nicely in 2017

The National Association of Realtors, The Mortgage Bankers’ Association, Freddie Mac andFannie Mae are all projecting that home sales will increase in 2017. Here is a chart showing what each entity is projecting in sales for this year and the next.

Home Sales Expected to Increase Nicely in 2017 | MyKCM

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Posted on October 6, 2016 at 7:54 pm
Kathy West | Category: Selling a Home

Lack of Existing Home Sales Inventory Impacting Sales

Some Highlights:

  • Existing home inventory is down 10.1% from last year.
  • A lack of inventory explains the modest increase in home sales (0.8% year-over-year) despite strong buyer demand.
  • Existing home prices increased 5.1% year-over-year, which is directly related to the lack of inventory.

Lack of Existing Home Sales Inventory Impacting Sales [INFOGRAPHIC] | Simplifying The Market

Posted on October 6, 2016 at 7:48 pm
Kathy West | Category: Market Statistics, Selling a Home

Home Inspections 101: What to Look Out For

Having an offer accepted on your dream house may seem like cause for celebration, but you’re not done just yet. You’ll need to get that home and its property inspected before you can pop the bubbly, and there are plenty of problems that could be hiding. This isn’t about peeling paint, which will be both obvious and pretty easy to fix, but about bigger ticket items that can affect the livability of the property. Here are 14 things that warrant extra attention during your home inspection.

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Posted on July 7, 2016 at 9:32 pm
Kathy West | Category: Selling a Home

The 6 Best Home Upgrades for Under $1,000

If you want to increase your profit potential, strategic home improvement ideas in these six categories – some of which won't cost you a thing – will give you the biggest return on your investment.

Pop quiz: Would you rather buy a home with 1990s laminate countertops or pristine marble? It seems like an easy “A,” yet many home sellers are so immune to pre-existing (read: old) features in their homes that they can’t understand why buyers can’t see past them too. But even if you aren’t ready to list your home just yet, a few smart changes can make a big difference in adding to your home’s value — especially in competitive markets like LA (or Seattle).

Kitchen Remodel

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Posted on June 6, 2016 at 11:55 pm
Kathy West | Category: Selling a Home