Homes are Selling Fast Across the Country [INFOGRAPHIC]

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Some Highlights:

  • The National Association of REALTORS® surveyed their members for their monthly Confidence Index.
  • The REALTORS® Confidence Index is a key indicator of housing market strength based on a monthly survey sent to over 50,000 real estate practitioners. Practitioners are asked about their expectations for home sales, prices and market conditions.
  • Homes sold in 60 days or less in 36 out of 50 states, and Washington D.C.
  • Homes typically went under contract in 34 days in March!

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Virginia Beach Homes

Don’t Underestimate the Importance of Using an Agent When Selling Your Virginia Beach Home

Virginia Beach Homes

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When a homeowner decides to sell their house, they obviously want the best possible price with the least amount of hassles. However, for the vast majority of sellers, the most important result is to actually get the home sold.

In order to accomplish all three goals, a seller should realize the importance of using a real estate professional. We realize that technology has changed the purchaser’s behavior during the home buying process. For the past three years, 92% of all buyers have used the internet in their home search according to the National Association of Realtors’ most recent Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers.

However, the report also revealed that 95% percent of buyers that used the internet when searching for a home purchased their home through either a real estate agent/broker or from a builder or builder’s agent. Only 2% purchased their home directly from a seller whom the buyer didn’t know.

Buyers search for a home online, but then depend on an agent to find the actual home they will buy (53%), to negotiate the terms of the sale & price (48%), or to help understand the process (60%).

The plethora of information now available has resulted in an increase in the percentage of buyers that reach out to real estate professionals to “connect the dots.” This is obvious, as the percentage of overall buyers who used an agent to buy their home has steadily increased from 69% in 2001.

Bottom Line

If you are thinking of selling your home, don’t underestimate the role a real estate professional can play in the process.

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What Is a Tiny House? A Huge Trend Explained in Simple Terms

Unless you’ve been living in a sensory deprivation tank, you’re probably familiar with the tiny-house movement invading all corners of the U.S. If nothing else, you may have hit upon one of HGTV’s three—count ’em, three—ongoing tiny-home series. But wait a minute: What exactly is a tiny house?

Sure, they’re cute, but just how small are these diminutive dwellings? How did the whole concept come about, and why is it continuing to explode in popularity?

If you’re considering this dramatic downsizing, let’s break down some of the basics to see if a small-scale setup is really for you.

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Just how tiny is a tiny house?

Typically, tiny homes are between 100 and 400 square feet. While there isn’t a set standard, tiny homes rarely exceed 500 square feet. Beyond that size, they’re merely, um, small. For reference, the median size of a new single-family home sold in 2015 was 2,520 square feet, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Need a visual? You could fit 144 tiny houses on a football field. Yes, we did the math.

How did the tiny-house movement start?

Multiple factors fueled the growth of the miniature-house movement. As thousands of people lost their homes due to unemployment or foreclosure during the 2007–08 financial crisis, many turned to tiny homes as an affordable alternative to traditional housing.

Those looking to shrink their carbon footprint also found these cozy quarters to be energy-efficient, saving them a bundle on utilities. Others, hoping to streamline their lives, were lured by the prospect of shedding most of their belongings and living simply.

While it might have originally seemed like a passing fad, the tiny-home trend is actually growing. While the exact number of tiny homes is unknown, in 2015 alone more than 30 microcommunities—established or under development—sprouted up across the U.S., according to Tiny House Community, a website for owners.

How much does a tiny house cost?

Just like regular-size homes, costs vary depending on the materials used and customizations added. And, just like their bigger counterparts, the price spectrum is wide. Tiny homes can cost as little as $15,000 if you’re salvaging materials and putting your DIY skills to the test. They can also set buyers back as much as $80,000 to $100,00 depending on how tricked-out you’d like your tiny home to be. Made-to-order tiny homes from Tumbleweed Tiny House Co., the nation’s leader in tiny-house construction, average between $57,000 and $70,000—still cheaper than the median contract price for a new, contractor-built single-family in 2015, which was $271,300, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Is tiny-house living for you?

Who doesn’t want to save money, right? Research from TheTinyLife.com, in partnership with TinyHouseConference.com and TinyHouseCraftsman.com (no, we’re not kidding), found that 68% of those who own a tiny home don’t have a mortgage, compared with 29% of all homeowners in the United States. But deciding to swap your sprawling home for a significantly smaller abode is big decision you shouldn’t enter into lightly.

The idea of reducing your mortgage, utility costs, lawn maintenance, and every other expense associated with owning a larger home is appealing, but there are a few factors that can make moving into a tiny home more challenging:

  • Where will you put it? If you think you’re going to build it on a vacant piece of land, check with your local zoning board first. Putting it on wheels and parking it in an RV park is another option.
  • What about utilities?  How will you access sewage disposal, water, power, and internet access?
  • How will you manage in the winter when it’s too cold to spend time outdoors and your indoor space is limited?
  • Does it really fit your lifestyle? It’s tough to host your annual New Year’s Eve bash when you can fit only five people in your home.

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Virginia Beach Homes

Virginia Beach: Protect Your Home In A Lightning Storm

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When you hear that first clap of thunder, take note! Lightning is a powerful force and could cause serious damage to your home.

Check these three quick tips to make sure you’re covered during that next thunderstorm.

Check Your Surge Protectors

First you need to own surge protectors and have your electronics being powered through them. This will help protect your outlets from far-away lightning strikes or lightning that hits main power grids. We recommend a surge protector like this one from Amazon to handle swells or spikes in voltage.

Unplug Your Appliances

Even if you have a surge protector, lighting that is in close proximity can be strong enough to “jump” or go through this protector. For this reason it’s a good idea to unplug any electronics to keep them from getting fried. This is the safest way to protect your major appliances like stereos, televisions and desktop computers.

Keep the Water Off

Electricity follows wiring and metal pipes in your home, and water conducts electricity. This means you are actually at risk of getting electrocuted if you’re using your home’s water during a lightning storm. If you can, wait until the storm passes before washing the dishes, washing your hands or taking a shower.

Virginia Beach Homes

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Perfect Your Charcoal Grilling Method: 7 Expert Tips

Virginia Beach Real Estate

 

Grill masters know that the process is much more than simply putting a piece of meat over some charcoal – it’s an art. And once you’ve perfected it, you can transform any backyard BBQ into a memorable experience. Take your grilling game up a notch by incorporating these seven tried-and-true tips into your cookout repertoire:


1 CLEAN THE KETTLE.
Bacteria on the outside of your grill can eventually affect the taste of things inside your grill. Every few weeks, sprinkle baking soda on a wet sponge or brush and give the outside of your grill a thorough clean.

2 ALWAYS USE PROTECTION.
After every use, protect your grill with a cover. This is especially important if you store your grill outside – it will help prevent hardware failures, rusting and dirt buildup.

3 EMBRACE COOKING SPRAY.
Before placing any burger patties, coat the cooking grid with oil or cooking spray. This minimizes stuck-on food and helps your meal stay moist as it cooks.

4 CLEAN WITH HEAT.
For the best tasting grilled treats, clean your grate before and after each use. Heat the grill for 5 to 10 minutes, then use the back end of a wire brush to scrape off any remains.

5 MAKE A PYRAMID.
For optimal airflow, stack your coals in a pyramid shape in the middle of the grill. This shape creates maximum heat efficiency and the least amount of smoke.

6 COVER THE GROUND.
To make clean up easier, place a tarp or grill mat underneath the grill. It will catch debris, grease and any fallen food.

7 DUMP IT OUT.
To prevent excess smoke and bad flavors, dump your charcoal and ash after each use (don’t forget about the ash catcher!). Once the grill is empty, clean it out thoroughly with a wire brush.

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Is Your First Home Within Your Grasp Now?

There are many people in Virginia Beach sitting on the sidelines trying to decide if they should purchase a home or sign a rental lease. Some might wonder if it makes sense to purchase a house in Hampton Roads before they are married and have a family. Others may think they are too young. And still others might think their current income would never enable them to qualify for a mortgage in Virginia Beach.

We want to share what the typical first-time homebuyer actually looks like based on the National Association of REALTORS most recent Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers. Here are some interesting revelations on the first time buyer:

Is Your First Home Within Your Grasp Now? | Keeping Current Matters

Bottom Line

You may not be much different than many people who have already purchased their first home. Meet with a local real estate professional today who can help determine if your dream home is within your grasp.

Homes for Sale Virginia Beach

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