An escrow is a deposit of funds or deed from one party, with the intention to deliver it to the other party upon completion of a series of events, as laid out in a contract.  Escrow "opens" upon delivery of escrow instructions and a fully executed real estate contract to a certified escrow company.  The escrow officer processes the escrow, essentially by making sure all of the terms of the agreement set forth by both parties have been met.  Once they have all been met, and the trust deed is recorded at the city recorder's office, funds/deed change hands and escrow is then "closed."  In short, Escrow makes sure everything that the buyer and seller agree upon in the contract are carried out correctly.  

Escrow officers and companies are…

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"Can I keep it?"  This is a very common question amongst homebuyers, and comes up in almost every real estate transaction.  The Realtor usually starts talking about fixtures vs. personal property to help the buyers determine what will be theirs and what won't be.  There are, though, a lot of grey areas regarding what is considered a fixture and what is personal property.

Fixtures are items which are affixed to the property (usually bolted in).  Typical examples of fixtures are light switches, plants in the ground, windows, mail boxes, garage doors, etc.  Personal property includes items which can be easily moved and removed from the property.  Examples are art work, potted plants, TVs, standing lamps, tables, etc.  However, consider the following…

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 1. Price it a LITTLE LOW

This may seem counterintuitive. However, let’s look at this concept for a moment. Many homeowners think that pricing their home a little OVER market value will leave them room for negotiation. In actuality, this just dramatically lessens the demand for your house. (see chart below)

Instead of the seller trying to ‘win’ the negotiation with one buyer, they should price it so that demand for the home is maximized. By doing this, the seller will not be fighting with a buyer over the price, but will instead have multiple buyers fight with each other over the house.

Realtor.com, gives this advice: “Aim to price your property at or just slightly below the going rate. Today’s buyers are highly informed, so if they sense…

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I want to write a post about home fixes that add value to your home.  I was hosting an open house recently and a potential home seller came in and asked a bunch of questions about selling, and was very curious to know about what he can do to add value.  The truth of the matter is.... it's not an exact science.  That being said, here are some ideas of fixes that CAN bump up your home's value, whether you are looking to stay there or sell. 

Bathroom and Kitchen Upgrades 

Bathroom and kitchen renovation is a rather costly job, but these areas of the home do add value to the home when they are nicely upgraded.  These are the go-to rooms of the house that people think of when they think about adding value.

 

 
Front Door 

A new front door…

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Realtors have a Fiduciary Duty to their clients. This means that Realtors must always protect the best interests of the client. More specifically, it means the Realtor must provide full disclosure, proper accounting, confidentiality, obedience, loyalty, due diligence, and honesty to the principal (buyer or seller).  


Realtors spend a great deal of time writing contracts and negotiating deals for their clients. They can explain every term on a contract in detail, and make sure the client understands what they are being asked to sign. Realtors also negotiate on behalf of buyers and sellers often. They understand how to write compelling listing descriptions, handle counter offers, draw up disclosures, and select which items to…

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You only get one chance to make a first impression! Whether you are selling your home or just want to spruce up its curb appeal, here are some easy and budget friendly tips to help your house look great from the outside:

Dress up your front door

Give your door some TLC with a new coat of paint and a new door handle.  I personally love brightly colored front doors.  Your fabulous new door is sure to be noticed by everyone who walks into your home.  

 

Improve outdoor lighting

Beautiful lights on the sides of the door or path lights leading up to your home can make a huge impact.  It looks great, AND helps guests see the path in front of them.  

 

Boost your garden

Plant easy-to-maintain bushes, trees and flowers.…

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SELLER Closing Costs in San Diego

There are costs associated with the sale of a home. For most sellers, these costs are simply deducted out of your net proceeds by your Escrow company, and the check you receive already has these amounts deducted. Your Realtor can provide you a very accurate "net sheet" to show how much you would net at various sales prices.

1. Realtor Commissions

In California, it is standard for the seller to pay the Realtor commissions for their own agent as well as the buyer's agent. Commission is one of the largest expenses associated with the sale of a home. 

2. HOA Fees

If you live in an HOA community, sellers normally pay the HOA transfer fee and the HOA document fee. These fees vary, but I'd budget $1,000-$1,500…

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 Today's post is about the option of doing For Sale By Owner.  Some home owners opt to sell their home themselves, without the service of a real estate agent.  This can be done successfully, but it's difficult and here are some reasons why I'd recommend using an agent rather than selling a home yourself:

1.  Commission -- You'll still have to pay commission to the buyer's agent regardless of whether you use an agent yourself or not.  The vast majority of buyers use an agent, so the seller is responsible for paying that agent's brokerage if that sale goes through.

2.  Coordination -- Your agent will coordinate open houses, showings, lockboxes, yard sign installation, home inspections, appraisal, and more.  All of these things take time, and many…

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Deep Clean 

Your home should absolutely sparkle when it is on the market!  If you are a great cleaner or enjoy doing it, go ahead and deep clean your home yourself.  If not, consider hiring a cleaning service to do the job.  Your house should look and smell lovely to make a great impression on potential home buyers.  If you are going to be living in your home while selling, remember to KEEP it clean throughout the process.

De-Personalize 

We know you love your family photos!  However, potential buyers want to envision themselves living in their future home, not your current home.  It is extremely helpful to remove personal decorations and photos, and leave only neutral ones that everyone would appreciate.  

Remove Evidence of…

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Make sure your pet's microchip and/or collar tag are up to date.  With so many moving pieces, you do not want your pet to escape out of the house when someone is coming in or out and run off!  You'll have more peace of mind knowing that if Fido does make a break for it, your contact number is on him.  You can get new pet tags made at most pet stores for under $10.  

 

 

If you are moving out of the neighborhood/city, go to your Vet's office and request your pet's paperwork and medical history so that you can transfer it to his new Vet.  You can find a fantastic new vet through Yelp or by a word of mouth referral.  Your current vet may even know of a great vet's office in the area you are looking to move into! 

 

  

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