Real Estate Information

Seattle Real Estate Blog

Joe Klarman


Displaying blog entries 21-24 of 24

The Importance of Staing Your Home

by Joe Klarman

When selling a home, one thing that can't be stressed enough is the importance of staging. You may think staging your home really isn't all that important; however, it can make the difference between selling your home quickly and having it linger on the market. Here are some advantages of staging you may not have thought about before, but are nonetheless important.

Provides a Good First Impression

Your home's first impression is important, as potential buyers are likely to form an opinion of it right away. If your home is clean and uncluttered, chances are others will think it has been well cared for, making it more likely they will be interested in it.

Makes rooms appear larger

One thing that will turn people off is the feeling that your rooms are not as big as they should be. Even if you have large rooms, it may not appear that you do if you have too much furniture or other belongings. Too much stuff makes your rooms appear crowded, and might not allow traffic to flow in and out of them smoothly. Staging rooms makes them appear larger, and provides a light and airy feeling that naturally attracts people to them.

Helps homes sell faster

Those who stage their homes tend to sell quicker than those who do not. According to Restyle Staging, homes that are not staged tend to stay on the market up to four times longer than those that are not staged. This is a problem because the longer your home is on the market, the less likely you are to obtain a good price for it. Staging also helps your home look better in pictures, which is important because most buyers narrow down their search by viewing photographs online. If your home doesn't photograph well, chances are that people won't even ask to see it in the first place.

Maximizing Closet Space

Your rooms aren't the only thing that requires staging, as your closets do as well. Fox News recommends having between 20 and 30 percent open space inside all your closets, as this will help them appear more spacious. Closets ( and storage space in general) is one thing that is non-negotiable for many people, which is why you should make the extra effort to ensure your closets are properly staged.

Enhances your Home's Potential

People are unlikely to envision what your home could look like, but instead are apt to see it the way it appears. This is one reason why professional staging is advantageous, because it allows you to maximize your home's potential, thereby changing the way others view it. If you have some unique architectural features to show off or want to emphasize how versatile certain areas are, professional staging can help you accomplish this with ease.

Draws and Keeps Attention

Not only can professional staging emphasize your home's unique features, but it may also pique their interest and entice them to see more. Carefully placed artwork can draw the eye toward the top of your stairs or a nook underneath them and encourage people to take a second look. Likewise, some fluffy pillows along a window seat or an afghan draped across a porch swing can also make people want to view more.

As you can see, there are plenty of reasons to consider staging your home. In the long run, your efforts will pay off by allowing you to sell your home sooner and for more money than you imagined possible.

10 Credit Truths

by Joe Klarman

When it comes to learning about your credit, there’s a lot of false information out there. The following are 10 credit truths that will help you understand credit better:

  1. Paying down your debts won’t instantly make your credit perfect – Paying off your debt will certainly help improve your score. However, your credit report doesn’t just show your present financial situation. It’s a snapshot of your credit history, which means that if you have any blemishes on your credit history, they’ll show up on your report.
  2. Canceling your credit cards won’t boost your score –Your credit score is affected by your credit utilization. Say you have two credit cards, both with $500 in credit available. If one credit card is maxed out, then you are using $500 out of $1000 in credit. That’s 50 percent of your available credit. If you close out the card with nothing on it, you are using $500 out of $500 – that’s 100 percent! You can actually hurt your score by closing your credit card.
  3. Just because you pay your bills on time doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look at your credit score – Paying your bills on time is a good way to improve your score. However, you’ll want to know what your credit score is and make sure that there aren’t any mistakes on your report since these can affect your score negatively.
  4. Checking on your credit score won’t hurt it – When companies check your score, it can hurt it slightly. However, when you check it yourself, no damage will be done to it. You can check your score as much as you like, although you may have to pay for it since you only have free access once a year.
  5. Credit reports aren’t always accurate – Credit reports can have mistakes on them. Make sure to report any mistakes you find to help improve your score.
  6. You can pay someone to help fix your score – You can pay companies to go through your credit report in order to spot any mistakes. They can’t make any blemishes go away magically, but they can help with errors.
  7. Good credit can be affected by the amount of money in your bank – This is true to an extent. If you over draft because you didn’t have enough money in your bank, it can hurt your credit score.
  8. Too many credit cards can hurt your score – Every time you apply for a new credit card, it will hurt your score a little bit, which means you don’t want to do it too much. Some lenders will also be wary they see you have 7 credit cards.
  9. All three of your credit scores will be similar – Although they can differ slightly, for the most part they will be similar.
  10. Paying with cash can sometimes help your credit score – This is true if it keeps you from maxing out your credit cards.

Be sure to keep these 10 credit truths in mind.

World's Oddest Houses

by Joe Klarman

Take a look at a photo gallery of some weird houses around the world.


Should I Buy a Home Now?

by Joe Klarman

I'm often asked if this is a good time to buy a home. Some clients are concerned that home prices may fall down the road, while others are convinced that home prices will go up.

Home prices are one factor in determining your cost of ownership, but so are interest rates and financing availability. Even though interest rates have fluctuated, they are still near historic lows. Since your monthly mortgage payment is a combination of paying down your principal and paying the interest owed, a one point rise in interest rates could cost tens of thousands of dollars over the life of your mortgage!

While a home is a major investment, it is also the center of your personal life. It's important to live in a home that reflects your taste and values, yet is within your financial "comfort zone." To that end, it may be more important to lock in today's relatively low interest rates while they are still available.

Please give me a call if I can be of any assistance in determining how much home you can afford in today's market.

Displaying blog entries 21-24 of 24




Contact Information

Russell Jones Real Estate
536 Broadway East
Seattle WA 98102
Office: (206)323-0800
Direct: (206)683-5639
Fax: (206)323-9275