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Jan. 4, 2019

Cost Effective Repairs Sellers Can Do To Get The Best Sales Price

You would be surprised how just the smallest things can help you get a great price for your home!  So, if everything in your home is important, where should you start when you only have so much time and money?  Here are some cost effective repairs to start with:

Paint:  It’s the cheapest and easiest way to make your home look clean and fresh!  Light and neutral colors appeal to most buyers, and make rooms look larger.  The whole house doesn’t necessarily need painting!  Only those areas with dark, dirty, or chipped paint would really need it.  Bonus!  You can do it yourself – but, if you don’t have a steady hand, hire someone who does! 

Lighting:  Good light makes spaces look larger.  Make sure that all of the light bulbs and light fixtures work properly.  Replace those that need replacing.

Bathrooms:  Super Clean them!  Make sure that everything works from the toilet to the faucets.  Sometimes a new toilet seat can do wonders for a toilet.  Bonus!  You don’t need a plumber to replace one.

Does it Work?  Go through your home and make sure that everything functions the way it is supposed to.  Doors, locks, garage door, windows…all of these items should be in good working order.  If it is super hard to get that front door open, the buyer will take note of it right away, and wonder what else doesn’t work.  Mechanical items such as HVAC and sprinkler systems should also be working correctly!

Call me to help you figure out what You need to do to get Your Home ready for selling season and to get the best price possible.

Gina M. Sohmer, is a veteran, a 2nd-Generation REALTOR®, a Graduate of the REALTOR® Institute, a Seller’s Representative Specialist, an Accredited Buyer’s Representative, and a member of the Phyllis Browning Company.  You can reach her at www.ginasohmerrealestate.com or (210) 608-0650.

Jan. 4, 2019

Why You Should Never Buy a Home Without a Realtor

Looking to buy a home?  Don’t mess it up, don’t overpay, and make the best deal possible – after all it is the biggest financial (and emotional) decision of your entire life!  You want to do it right?  Don’t work with someone who is not YOUR agent.  Get your own Realtor®.  Why?

Expertise.  Real Estate has its own language and she speaks that language:  fluently.  It requires dozens of forms, reports, disclosures, and other technical documents.  Her expertise will help You write a winning offer and dodge costly mistakes.

Her Exclusive Home Network.  You can find homes on the Internet.  But She has access to even more listings!  Like available quiet, upcoming and non-MLS homes.  SHE can help You find hidden gems!  She knows the neighborhoods, and can direct you toward a home in your price range that you may have overlooked.

She is a Negotiating Tiger!  Competition in our market is fierce!  There are more buyers than available homes, cutthroat tactics, all-cash offers, and multiple offers!  It can be stressful!  She is an experienced, professional negotiator whose only interest is getting You the best deal!  It's not just about how much you spend!  It’s also about inspections, contingencies, and Your particular needs.

Her People Network.  She knows everybody!  Mortgage lenders, attorneys, inspectors, stagers, repairmen, and on and on.

Ethics.  She is held to a higher ethical standard than licensed agents and must adhere to a Code of Ethics.  She works for YOU!

She’s a Multitasker!  Parent/market researcher/therapist—all rolled into one!  She does a lot to earn her commission, working long hours and every day of the week, all to make sure You're getting the best deal and a house that you love!

Get yourself a Realtor® today!

Gina M. Sohmer, is a veteran, a 2nd-Generation REALTOR®, a Graduate of the REALTOR® Institute, a Seller’s Representative Specialist, an Accredited Buyer’s Representative, and a member of the Phyllis Browning Company.  You can reach her at www.ginasohmerrealestate.com or (210) 608-0650.

Jan. 4, 2019

Save the Date:  November 9, 2018 – Casino Night at The Dominion Country Club

If you have ever visited my website and read my bio, you know that one of my passions is keeping our communities great!  So with the holidays approaching, instead of giving you pointers about the different parts of closing costs and real estate contracts, I thought I would share with you something that makes a difference in all of our lives – community service and helping those less fortunate than ourselves.  Community service goes hand-in-hand with Real Estate, because great communities equate to great places to live!

The Leon Springs Business Association (LSBA), a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, is hosting its annual Casino Night at The Dominion Country Club this year on Friday, November 9th

Tickets to this worthwhile event are $50 and include great food, live music, entry for raffle prizes, cash bar and Casino FUN – which everyone loves!!!  Complimentary $1000 in Casino Chips ($1500 if you purchase your ticket in advance)! 

But, most importantly, the purpose of Casino Night is for the area community to come together as one and gather donations to provide Christmas Gifts for children in the Methodist Children’s Hospital and the University Hospital who are unfortunately too ill to be at home over the holidays.  Any additional funds beyond this goal are provided to other worthwhile organizations like the Hill Country Daily Bread, and are used to purchase equipment for our volunteer fire department, and provide school supplies to elementary schools. 

This year I am sponsoring the Texas Hold ‘Em table and would love to see you there!  Find out how to get your advance tickets at www.leonspringstx.com.

Gina M. Sohmer, is a veteran, a 2nd-Generation REALTOR®, a Graduate of the REALTOR® Institute, a Seller’s Representative Specialist, an Accredited Buyer’s Representative, and a member of the Phyllis Browning Company.  You can reach her at www.ginasohmerrealestate.com or (210) 608-0650.

Jan. 4, 2019

General Closing Costs and Who Typically Pays What

If you are thinking about buying or selling a home, you will hear either your Realtor or your Lender mention the phrase “Closing Costs”.  Closing Costs are fees associated with a real estate transaction.  Both buyers and sellers pay closing costs in Texas.  If you are a Buyer, it means money you will need in addition to your down payment, and if you are a Seller typically your costs will be paid for out of the proceeds of the sale.

Though “Who Pays What” can be negotiated during the contract phase, the following are some of the general closing costs that a seller and buyer can expect:

Seller                                                               Buyer

Real Estate Commission                                 Lender’s Title Insurance Premium

Tax Certificate                                                Escrow Fee

Escrow Fee                                                     Document Preparation (if applicable)

Deed Preparation                                            Notary Fees

Seller’s Loan Payoff                                       Deed Recording Charges

Owner’s Title Insurance                                  Prorated HOA dues and Transfer Fees

Judgments, Tax Liens against the Seller         All New Loan Charges (with exceptions)

Pro-rated Taxes                                               Inspection Fees (property, roof, termite etc.)

Delinquent Taxes                                            Homeowner’s Insurance Premium for First Year

Notary Fees                                                     Interest on New Loan

Home Owners Warranty                                 Fees to set up the New Loan Escrow Account

Loan Fees required by Buyer’s Lender

Texas Title Insurance Premium Rates are the same, because they are set by the Department of Insurance and are based on the sales price of the property.  Lender fees are different by lender – and can be negotiated!  Buyers should ALWAYS shop their home loans to compare fees to get the best deal!

Contact me for a free sales market analysis, or if you are interested in buying a home.

Gina M. Sohmer, is a veteran, a 2nd-Generation REALTOR®, a Graduate of the REALTOR® Institute, a Seller’s Representative Specialist, an Accredited Buyer’s Representative, and a member of the Phyllis Browning Company.  You can reach her at www.ginasohmerrealestate.com or (210) 608-0650..

Aug. 17, 2018

Hard to Sell Renovations and Things that Don’t Improve Home Value

Your home isn’t just the place where you put your feet up, it’s also an investment.  It’s natural to want improvements that will increase value – but it’s important to know what may cost you money when you sell it.

Sellers need to realize that just because they see something as an improvement – doesn’t mean that a future buyer will feel the same way!

Make improvements that are geared toward your neighborhood to receive the most return on investment.  Example:  Your neighborhood has a pool, everyone in the neighborhood pays for the pool via their HOA fees.  If you invest in a pool, you may love it and enjoy it immensely!  But, buyers who don’t want to deal with the additional maintenance and cost of a personal pool, will consider this a deal breaker when considering your home.  Your “improvement” has reduced the number of buyers who are now interested in your home!

This applies to Garage Conversions.  Unless everyone in your neighborhood has converted their garage – think twice about doing it.  You may enjoy the space more than any other space in the home, but most buyers expect to be able to use the garage as a garage.

Also, it is not a good idea to combine bedrooms to make larger spaces.  Your home’s value is dependent upon more things than just square footage – the more rooms it has, the more you can sell it for.  And NEVER remove a closet.  Storage space is critical to buyers!

Overall, research what is going on in your local market and make improvements that benefit not only you, but make the home sellable to future buyers!

Contact me for a free market analysis, or if you are looking to buy a home.

Gina M. Sohmer, is a veteran, a 2nd-Generation REALTOR®, a Graduate of the REALTOR® Institute, a Seller’s Representative Specialist, an Accredited Buyer’s Representative, and a member of the Phyllis Browning Company.  You can reach her at www.ginasohmerrealestate.com.