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Do you look around your house with some grand ideas on home improvements you could make? Whether you’re renovating in hopes of a return on your investment or want something you can just enjoy, check out this list of renovations you won’t regret.

A New Deck

In the winter months, it’s hard to imagine how much joy you will get out of a new deck. Luckily for you spring is just one month away and bar-b-que season will be here before you know it. This improvement makes money sense too. The upgrade has an estimated 70% ROI.

Finishing the basement

This improvement can be a bit costly and take time to finish, but once completed you will be sure to enjoy a whole new level of living space. You can also experience the comfort knowing it has at least a 70% ROI.

New front door

A new door can change the entire look of your home. This will give it a new home feel you will want to come home to. Couple that with 80-90% ROI depending on material and it is a win-win.

New insulation

Believe it or not, installing new insulation is one of the most comfortable improvements you can make. It has the highest ROI coming in at 107%. That doesn’t even count improved energy savings. Saving money feels good.

Plant trees

If you plan on staying in your home for a few years, consider planting a tree. Planting a tree is affordable and once it matures you can consider it a money tree. It can add thousands of dollars to the value of your home.

Alright, so now you know what projects offer the most bang for their buck. Now let’s look at the 5 worst home improvements sellers can make.

Coming in at number one is Pools. In ground pools are a double whammy. They can cost $20,000-$60,000 and don’t do much for a home’s value. Buyers are often turned off by them due to high maintenance and insurance costs. Although we all want to bring the outdoors in, sunrooms have an ROI of less than 60%. Up next is the decision to pour money into a home office. Unfortunately, that space doesn’t work for you since you only get about half back once it is time to sell. Unless you are going to live in your home for many more years, upgrading your master suite is an easy way to lose about 40% of your money spent. Finally, garages do seem to get full and cluttered easily, but adding more garage space only yields about 69% ROI.

Be sure to stretch your home improvement dollars so you get to both enjoy the upgrades and get a better return when it is time to sell. If you have a different project in mind and are curious about the potential for your return, reach out to your COListings real estate agent today to get their expert opinion.

Sources: http://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/2017/


Since technology has made finding your next home easier than ever, you may ask yourself “why do I even need a real estate agent?” Here are 5 reasons why you should choose a licensed agent as a partner through the process.

ACCESS

Everyone is looking for something different in a home and with low inventory, shopping the same way everyone else does won’t get you the house you want. Agents know exactly what is available and have insights on properties that haven’t gone on the market yet. Agents can save you time by customizing a list of homes that are a right fit for your budget, desired area and personal preferences.

KNOWLEDGE

No one wants to overpay for a home or make an offer that is too low and risk not getting the contract. The best agents go out of their way to fight hard for the best terms and conditions for their clients. This is what they are paid to do. Agents know how the asking price compares to market values. They have access to sales information and other valuable data to make sure you remain competitive.

PROTECTION

The job of an agent is to protect you. They will guide you through the process, negotiate terms and strategize the process. They represent you during home inspections and appraisals and fight to improve your bottom line. When they step in for you, it ensures your frustrations remain minimal.

COMMUNICATION

You need to know what is going on through the process of buying a home. From the start, an agent with help walk you through the financing process. They can connect you with recommended lenders and make sure you look at homes that you can afford. A good agent will make sure you are asking yourself the right questions. They take the time to explain legal contracts and keep you updated regularly on all events with the transaction.

TRUST

Many buyers have a home they must sell before they can move into a new one. The sell and buy process can be complicated and you need to have an agent you trust to coordinate and execute it with your best interests in mind. There is no better partner to help you than the one who is also helping you buy. Since a purchase doesn’t usually occur without the sale, it is important that you have someone that linked with the timing and details and knows the importance of each side.

When you are ready to buy a home, don’t go it alone. Make sure to contact a COListings partner to save you time, money and keep heartbreak away.


Home Is Where The Head Is

We have all heard the phrase "home is where the heart is." While this is true, when buyer’s commit to buying a home, they often fall in love too easily. Many end up regretting the decision to say “I do” because they didn’t realize house hunting should be a matter of the head too. COListings wants to make sure you avoid heart ache and a broken bank with these 5 steps toward healthy house hunting.

Love Your Agent

When you are making one of the biggest purchases of your life, you should have a trusted professional on your side. Do you have an agent that you know is the one? One that you can trust, one that has your best interests in mind and asks the right questions to get you into a home that you will love? If not, you could face heart ache during and after the process.

Fall Carefully

In this hot market, it is easy to jump at a house just to get a contract accepted. But, you need take a step back and slow down the courtship. Are you overpaying for the home? Are there any red flags? Does it meet the list of your needs, wants and must haves? If not, you need to accept that it isn’t meant to be and you need to keep searching.

Community Love

Another way to avoid heartache is to make sure you look outside the walls of the home. The neighborhood you are going to be a part of should be a big factor in your decision to move to a certain area. Meet your potential neighbors and get a feel for what it is like at different times of the day. Don't forget to consider the location, crime rates and the amenities that are important to you.

Remove The Rose Colored Glasses

There are many factors that you might not consider when looking through rose colored glasses. The first being the condition of the home. It is hard to look past a house in showing mode to consider any issues with the home. It is important to involve an inspector to make sure these things are being looked at objectively.

Budget Love

It is important to know what you can quality for before you start house hunting. This will keep your feet on the ground and keep you from falling for a home that is out of your price range. In addition to a mortgage, home ownership comes with additional expenses. Those expenses vary based on the home you are looking at. These can include everything from higher utility bills, higher tax bills, HOA dues, increased landscaping costs, as well as needing to have cash on hand for unexpected repairs. Before you even start looking at houses, you need to have a clear idea of what you can really afford so that you don't get in over your head.

Listen to your head, your heart, and reach out to the agents with COListings who can help make sure you have a long and lasting relationship with your new home.


Anyone that decides to sell their house knows that for their home to show at its best, certain things should be put away. But, you would be surprised what some sellers leave out. Before you go on the market, here are 7 things homebuyers are begging you hide.

TAXIDERMY

Some may say taxidermy is an art form that honors deceased animals and gives them new life. This isn’t always the case. For many, seeing mounts and hides in a potential home can be alarming. They can impose an uncomfortable feeling on potential home buyers, and instead of seeing themselves living in the home, they are distracting by the carcasses staring at them.

WEAPONS

While you may be a weapon enthusiast, prospective buyers might feel slightly threatened if they walk through a home and stumble upon a weapon. Whether it is a rifle, a knife, or nunchucks, it’s best to keep them out of sight. After all, you don’t want them walking away feeling like they HAVE to buy the house…or else.

CREEPY COLLECTIONS

Yes, it might come as a surprise, but not everyone has a collection of human skulls, doll heads, dead insects, or creepy clowns. To each his own, just don't display when you are trying to sell.

POLITICS

Despite your political beliefs, you want to leave them out of a home sale. The process of buying and selling a home is complicated enough and bringing right vs. left into the mix could derail a perfectly good deal. Make sure to part with any political signage before you go on the market. ‘MERICA.

SCENTS

Not all noses smell the same. Lighting lavender incense upstairs, with 5 other candles and 12 plug-ins throughout the house does not appeal to buyers. When they walk into a house that overwhelms them with a strong scent, the first thing they ask is "what are they hiding." To avoid this smelly mistake, put the scents away.

PEST TRAPS

If you have traps out to catch unwanted pests, you will want to hide them out of sight from any potential buyers. Then pray to the pest gods that the critters you are trying to catch don’t join the showing appointment.

YOUR STASH

If it is legal, you might not bother with what other people are thinking when they come across your stash. But, you should still follow precaution so that no one gets into it. It’s better to be safe and stash your stash.

If you sell your home with a COListings agent, you don’t have to worry about anything. They bring with them a house cleaner and a professional stager to make sure that nothing gets left out that buyers wished you hid.


Does the writing on the walls of your current home say it’s time to move into a space that fits you and your family better? Making the decision to sell your house is not an easy one, but the agents at COListings are here to walk you through some telltale signs that it is time to move.

Outgrown

Over the years, your family may have grown. As your children get bigger, your house gets smaller and you will suddenly find that what was once perfect, just doesn’t work for you anymore. Your children will soon want more space of their own, with work areas or play areas. This may be your sign that it’s time.

Empty nest

Maybe you have entered the empty nest stage and your kids are all out of the house. Are you paying to heat rooms that are now empty? Do you have just too much house? The need to downsize during this stage of life is both economical and emotional. It is a step towards something new with many years to come in a house compliments the change.

Change in lifestyle

Maybe a job change requires you have an office space so you can work at home. Or maybe you just can’t take the commute any longer. Do you find your family driving across town for activities? Maybe being on the go constantly means you don’t have the time to maintain your current home like you once did. Maybe you met that special someone and need to blend two lives together. Life is ever changing and that might be another reason to consider moving to a home that supports this new juncture.

Renovating without return

Every neighborhood has a cap on how high home prices will go. Many of the projects you might take on instead of selling won’t yield a financial return. If you are planning to remodel to make your home more livable, make sure to consider your return on the investment. It might make more sense, in order to save cents, to move.

A flexible timeframe

Property values have increased over the past few years. That means you are most likely set up to take advantage of the market and leverage the equity you have in your current home and put it toward your next home when you are ready. Without being forced to find a new home right away due to market conditions, you are in control.

A changing neighborhood

Have crime rates started to spike? Are barking dogs keeping you up all night? Maybe your neighbors just don’t take care of their homes like they used to. If your neighborhood is moving in a bad direction, it might be time to move on.

Jimmy Fallon also chimed in on this subject. We hope you get a good chuckle on when some of his viewers decided it was #TimeToMove.

If you think you might be ready to break out the moving boxes, contact a COListings agent today to help you start the process.