WHY CREDIT CHECKS DURING CLOSING ARE IMPORTANT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I can’t tell a prospective buyer enough about this, yet I’ve had buyers find out a few days before closing that their loan was denied.  You see, they went out and charged a new living room set, or maybe new appliances for the house before closing.  When the lender ran the credit check prior to closing, their debt ratio now exceeded the loan parameters.  Read on…

 

You’ve found your dream home! After months of searching, you’re finally closing on the house that you’ve wanted for so long. The last thing you want to do is take any action that would interfere with the closing of your home. Since the start of your home search, your agent has probably told you time and time again not to do anything that would impact your credit score, like opening a new line of credit or making a large purchase. While this makes sense during the approval process, you may wonder why it is key to keep your credit in check until after closing. Here is an explanation of the 2 credit checks performed during the home-buying process and why it is important to maintain your credit from start to finish.

Pre-Approval Credit Check

To get a loan to purchase a home, you’ll go through a pre-qualification process. You’ll let your lender know a variety of financial information, from your credit score and employment to your marital status, as well as any number of factors that can impact your qualification. With this self-reported information, you can then be pre-approved. After that, lenders will verify the information you’ve provided and this is when they will pull your credit history. It is important that what you’ve reported matches the credit information pulled by the lender – which is why you shouldn’t miss any payments or open new cards during this time. Lenders offer approval based on a risk assessment, and you do not want them to think that you are a risk.

Credit Check at Closing

The main concern of the lender is the risk you pose to them. Because it can take time for an offer to be accepted, your lender WILL pull a second credit check while waiting for your loan to pass underwriting. This is to ensure your credit hasn’t changed since the initial credit check. If you took out a loan or created massive credit debt, you could change your debt to income ratio and your lender could decide you are too risky to loan to. This is why it is so very important to keep your credit in check before, during, and after the home-buying process!

 

 

HOW TO DECIDE IF YOU SHOULD REMODEL OR MOVE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After living in a home for several years, it can be easy to discover things you may not be crazy about. While some things can be a quick fix, there may be major changes that make you wonder if it is worth the investment. At this point, you’re probably asking yourself if you should remodel or just find a new home. As you have probably realized, this isn’t always an easy choice. There are many factors that go into this decision. Here are some things to consider when deciding what will work best for you…

1. Determine which is more cost-friendly

While both options will have costs, one will have more than the other depending on your situation. Some of the costs of selling include agent commissions, moving costs, minor repairs, the costs of a new home, and potential upsizing costs. The costs of remodeling can include permits, architectural plans, materials and labor, and any other additional costs incurred in the process.

2. Look into the current housing market

Depending on whether your local real estate market is hot, it might make more sense to just sell if houses are selling quickly around you. By talking to a real estate agent, you can find out what to expect in terms of days on market, average sales price, and other important factors when it comes to selling a home.

3. Decide if your roots are deep 

Is your home more than just a home to you? If you and your family are actively involved in the community, remodeling may work best for you. On the flip side, if there are better schooling or job opportunities in a different neighborhood, or you already spend hours a day traveling to those locations, selling may be a better option.

4. Decide if a renovation can solve your problems

Take the time to decide if the problems with your home are fixable. Is it really the house, or do you dislike your neighborhood? Do you have to spend an hour driving one way to work? Do you need a lot more space? If your answer to questions like this make you realize renovations won’t solve your problems, consider that it may just be time to put your home on the market.

5. Consider the ROI on your remodel

Calculating your return on investment will help you determine two things – first, if a remodel will cost you less than selling your home. It will also help you determine if you will be able to make your money back on a remodel if you choose to sell in the future. Call one of our team members at Advantage Real Estate in Moberly for a no-cost consultation.  You want to make sure you’re not out-pricing your home for the neighborhood you’re in!

If these considerations make you realize it is time to sell your home, give us a call today!  We have membership in TWO MLS’s:  Randolph County and Columbia, Missouri!

 

 

Simple Sprucing Tips For Your Home

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You don’t need thousands of dollars to refurbish your home and make it feel like new again. Instead, you can DIY a lot of features in your house to help spruce it up for the upcoming season. Whether you plan to sell your home, have guests over, or are just tired of how drab it is been feeling lately, here are a few tips and tricks you can use to refresh your space:

CLEAN + DECLUTTER
Throw out all of the junk taking up space! You’d be surprised by how much more you’ll fall back in love with your home when you take out the collection of accumulated stuff that has piled up over the years and finally get to see your home’s features for what they are. Store what you don’t need/use in either the attic, basement, or in a storage unit. After you’ve decluttered, be sure to finish it off by cleaning your home. Clean windows, walls, and the floors for the best results.

BRING IN NATURAL LIGHT
Do you have heavy curtains covering your windows? Bring them down! Not only will this make your space feel bigger by removing stuff off the walls, it’ll also feel alive again with all of the natural light that pours in.

ADD FRESH PAINT
Nothing refreshes a home like a new coat of paint. If you have dark dull colors, opt for lighter tones. Covering up stains on the walls, or drab old paint, can help your house feel brand new all over again.

DD TILE
Consider adding a tile backsplash in your kitchen or bathroom. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get beautiful results. Be sure you get tiles that compliment the colors in the space, so it doesn’t clash and look unappealing.

ADD COLOR
Although neutral colors are always recommended as the base of any home decor, don’t be afraid to compliment your neutrals with a pop of color. You can add it throughout the home by using flowers, pillows, decor, or even light curtains that are staged on the sides of your windows.

CHANGE OUT FIXTURES + HARDWARE
You’d be surprised by how much more a kitchen can look different just by replacing the hardware on the cabinets. A bathroom or living room can come alive again by installing a brand new light fixture. If you moved into a place that still has the same stock hardware or fixtures, replace them and add a little creativity with the new pieces you have installed.

REARRANGE FURNITURE
Head to Pinterest and get inspired for new living room, bedroom, or dining room arrangements. Most homeowners decorate “incorrectly” when it comes to standard staging rules. View a variety of furniture set-ups on social media and let it motivate you to rearrange your space. You don’t have to buy a bunch of new furniture to make a drastic change.

Any of our friendly agents at Advantage Real Estate in Moberly MO would be happy to come out and give you some tips on sprucing up your home for free. If you’re ready to list your property, give us a call.

 

MAKE YOUR HOME STAND OUT THIS SUMMER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As May comes to a close, school ends and the summer officially begins, that means one important thing – home selling season is upon us. With the kids home from school and vacation time accumulated, both buyers and sellers are ready to enter the market as the weather heats up. As the market begins to grow, you may wonder how to make sure your home stands out among all the others trying to sell during the summer months. Here are a few tips to make sure you can catch the eye of potential buyers during busy season!

1. Tour Other For-Sale Homes

Check out open houses for homes similar to yours that are also on the market. As you are preparing to list, use these tours to see what decor and design-types are attractive to you and potential buyers. If there are things you notice that you do not like, be sure to remove those features from your own home if you have them. Sometimes stepping out of the box (or in this case, your own home) will allow you to look at your home through the lens of a potential buyer.

2. Complete Your Home Inspection Up Front

The home inspection can be a dreaded part of the closing process. Instead of waiting for a buyer, complete your home inspection ahead of time. The goal is to set your home apart from the others on the market, and an easy way to do so is letting those potential buyers know that your home is not just for sale, but it is already inspected. If you repair any issues found by the inspector, you’ll be one step ahead and gives potential buyers peace of mind.

3. Completely Remove Clutter

Decluttering and cleaning is always the first step on the list when you are preparing to list your home, but often we don’t take the clutter ‘removal’ part as seriously. Instead of just moving clutter from a room to a closet, completely remove the clutter from your home. Whether that means donating, storing, or just tossing those items, removing clutter will allow potential buyers to picture themselves in every part of your home, including your closets and garages – rather than just picturing your clutter stashed away there.

4. Curb Appeal Is Key

With spring quickly transitioning to summer, your yard may need a little love. Spring rains and warmth might’ve left your lawn a little overgrown. Take the time to remove weeds, mow your lawn, and add new plant life around the outside of your home. The outside will be the first thing potential buyers see, and you want them to be drawn in by your yard, not turned away by it.

5. Use Refreshments To Your Advantage

Whether you’re a baker or just love buying baked goods, open houses are the perfect opportunity to draw potential buyers in with sweets. With rising temperatures, a thoughtful treat with a glass of lemonade or ice water adds a personal touch to your open house that will, at a minimum, guarantee that potential buyers cross the threshold of your home. Sometimes, getting them in the door is all you need.

If you are considering selling your home in or around Moberly, MO, call our office. We are here and eager to help you with your real estate needs.

 

First-Time Buyer Advice

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’ve never purchased a house before, you may have no idea where to begin when preparing to become a homeowner. You may be on the fence about buying, or you may feel like you are ready to buy a home today. Either way, these tips can help anyone feel a little more prepared for their first home purchase!

MONEY IS KEY

It is easy to begin scrolling through beautiful homes on the market without considering your budget. Sale postings can be all over your social media feeds, tempting you to just take a peek. While looking can be fun and exciting, you should prepare financially before you start eyeing any homes. It is much better to know what your price range is so you don’t fall in love with a house you just can’t afford (for now!)

MAKING A LIST, CHECKING IT TWICE

While you need to be realistic and recognize that you likely are not going to find a home with every single thing you wish to have in a house, making a list of the things that are a priority for you (room count, big backyard, master walk-in closet, etc.) will help you to make sure you’re only looking at houses that will fit your wants and needs.

PHOTOS DON’T TELL THE WHOLE PICTURE

It is easy to fall in love with a home after seeing the listing photos. These perfectly lit, well-staged photos show off houses in their best light, but that doesn’t mean you are getting the whole story. Listing photos are a great place to start, as they will help you to narrow down your options. Unfortunately, there are home traits that may not be portrayed well in photos, whether it be low ceilings, a drafty build, or anything in between.  Once you’ve made a short list of the homes that appear to be a fit for you, always do a home tour.

THAT GUT-FEELING

If you walk into a house and it feels like home, trust your gut. There is no better way to know if you should buy a home than seeing how you feel when you walk through the front door. Your home purchase will probably be one of, if not the largest, purchase you’ve made in your life so far. Pictures can only do so much, and nothing can help you decide whether or not a house is made for you better than getting inside it!

NOTHING ELSE WILL DO

Do you get upset at the thought of losing the house you just toured to someone else? Does it already feel like home when you are inside? These are two signs that you have found the home for you! If you see a home and are ready to stop looking at others, you are one step closer to buying a home you will love.

THE BEST AGENT

Finding a great real estate agent in Moberly is going to be the part that ties everything together. A quality agent will help you find homes within your budget that possess your must-have items and they’ll offer you guidance through every step of the process.

If you’re looking for a real estate agent in Randolph and surrounding counties to help you find and buy your first dream home, call us today!!

It’s Because Of The Price

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are you getting frustrated that your home hasn’t already sold? Has it been sitting on the market with little to no showings, while houses nearby are going under contract almost immediately? We’re here to tell you the solution is simple: lower the price! I know, I know, you probably already heard this from your agent and thought that it was worth the price you wanted. But the truth of the matter is, the market is hot. It’s at the hottest point it has been in a long time, and if your home isn’t selling in today’s market, and your agent is working their butt off to market it, then the price is too high.

Who doesn’t want to sell what they own, and cherish, for the most they can get? Your agent wants to sell your home for top dollar as well! But, if you still haven’t received an offer in such a strong seller’s market, it’s time to sit down with your agent, re-evaluate your motivation to sell, and talk about a new price. Do you have goals when it comes to moving? A new house, a new state? That’s awesome! So if you want to move forward with your life, cut out the stress of slowing down your sale and make the best decision to ensure your home can get under contract. Keep in mind there is a highly likely chance that by pricing lower than market value, you can anticipate a bidding frenzy that can get you even more than you anticipated. Supply and demand – it works wonders when you let your agent play the numbers to get buyers in a frenzy for your home. Drop it down to what your trusted agent recommends, and you’ll be putting your best foot forward in your market.

The market is strong in Randolph and surrounding counties. Call Advantage Real Estate in Moberly MO for a free consultation to see what your property is worth today.

 

Kitchen Improvements Under $100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Want to spruce up your kitchen but stuck on a tight budget? Check out this list of improvements you can get started on for under $100. These tips can come in handy when you’re ready to list your home to sell on the market.

1. REFRESH THE SINK:

If your sink is starting to look outdated, find an affordable, yet stylish, replacement. If you have the eye for DIY, you can also purchase some sandpaper and a $4 can of spray paint that is made for metal, and use it to refresh and brighten the color.

2. HANG A NEW LIGHT FIXTURE

A decorative light fixture doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. You can generally find some decent ones that are under $100. Go for a chrome finish or choose the rustic route, whichever suits the current decor in your kitchen. You can also add LED lights under your kitchen cabinets for around $10-$20.

3. PAINT THE CABINETS

With care taken in the prep work, you can refinish the paint on your cabinets. You can generally get a kit for around $75. Refreshing the paint color or the stain can make your kitchen feel brand new.

4. TURN YOUR FRIDGE INTO A CHALKBOARD

Chalkboard finishes are a hot trend, especially on the fridge! They add more functionality by allowing home owners to write grocery lists, menus, and even to-dos. Use painters tape to outline the shape and size you want to use as the chalkboard, then coat it with magnetic primer followed by chalkboard paint.

5. REPLACE OUTLET PLATES

Replace the outdated outlet wall plates for your light switches. You can add some character to it by using bold patterns, bright colors, or elegant textures. If they look faded, yellow, or chipped, they’re a cheap fix to replace.

6. CHANGE HARDWARE

Replacing the hardware on your kitchen cabinets and drawers can provide a drastic change to your kitchen. Not only can you get rid of hideous outdated hardware, but you can add a completely new feel to the theme of your kitchen just by updating the hardware throughout it.

7. EXPAND STORAGE

Have empty wall space? Search your local home stores for cute baskets or storage containers you can use to fill the space. Not only can it add some character to your kitchen, it also adds functionality and more storage options – a feature buyers love if you’re thinking of listing your home.

8. DRESS UP YOUR DECOR

Bring some color to your kitchen. Throw out decor that looks like it belongs in the 90’s, rugs that are falling apart, and anything else that weighs down a fresh look. Add in some new rugs and hand towels that match your personality and the theme you’re trying to achieve. You can also add some plants and decorative pieces for character.

9. CLEAN UP THE CLUTTER

The best cleaning tip I can give my clients is to remove the clutter. Nothing is a bigger eye sore than too many things. It can also mess with the energy in a home. Throw out the things that are taking up too much space. If it’s sentimental, see if you can store it in a new place or store it if you are preparing for a move.

If you are considering listing your home on the market, the Advantage Real Estate agents in Moberly MO are eager to help you with ideas on sprucing up your kitchen or any room!

5 WAYS TO FILL THE SPACE ABOVE YOUR BED

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Even if you have a beautiful headboard, the space above your bed can seem empty if left untouched. This space can be tricky to decorate, but that doesn’t mean you should leave it blank. There are plenty of ways to spruce up that space without much work. Here are 5 ways to make the best of that negative space!

1. Add a Set of Shelves

Even if you don’t need the extra storage space, you can use shelves to add small decor that is unique to you. Your favorite books, small planters, or even picture frames are a great way to personalize the shelves.

2. Wallpaper the Wall

f you’re worried about adding anything above your bed, consider creating an accent wall with floral wallpaper. Many places sell peel and stick paper so if you decide you don’t love the style or you’re renting and cannot make a permanent change, you can still try out wallpaper.

3. Make the Room Look Bigger With Mirrors

The best way to make a room look bigger is to strategically place mirrors across from open windows or sources of light. You can also place 2 small mirrors alongside a large central mirror if your bed isn’t across from a light source. This will also make your room appear larger while filling empty space.

4. Consider a Tasteful Tapestry or Wall Hanging

Tapestries aren’t just for college dorm rooms. If you aren’t ready to add shelving fixtures but want something a little more than wallpaper, consider adding a pop of color with a tapestry or a statement yarn wall hanging.

5. Create a Gallery Wall

Whether it is gridded and organized or statement and staggered, a gallery wall is the perfect way to add a little more ‘you’ to your bedroom. Frame your favorite family photos or the landscape photos from your favorite vacation.

Our Advantage team of agents in Moberly, MO are eager to  help you with tips and ideas on decorating, whether if you’re thinking of selling OR buying a new home in and surrounding Randolph County!

10 STEPS TO DECLUTTER YOUR KITCHEN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are all thankful for the many drawers and cabinets in kitchens today, but they make it easy for us to hide our clutter instead of getting rid of it. If you have reached the point where you can no longer open a door in your kitchen without having something fall out, it is time to declutter your kitchen. Follow these steps and you can begin a clutter-free life, starting with your kitchen!

1. Sort through your utensil drawer. Toss out any broken or unused utensils.

2. Open your pantry and get rid of anything that is expired. Take the time to organize your shelves by food type. Have a shelf for canned items, a shelf for boxed items, and so on.

3.  Throw away any old or expired spices in your spice cabinet/rack.

4. Organize your Tupperware cabinet. If you’re like most people, this is probably the most disorganized area of your kitchen. Toss out any broken containers and any lone containers or lids. If the majority of your Tupperware fits those categories, toss it all and start fresh. Many containers on the market today have stackable/attached lids to help you stay organized.

5. Work your way from the outside to the inside of your refrigerator. Remove any old papers, coupons, or notes from the outside of your fridge. If it is something you don’t want to part with, like a card or invitation, place those in a box for safekeeping. Now that the outside is cleaned, declutter the inside as you did your pantry. Pull everything out and get rid of any expired food or drinks. Wipe down your shelves and replace the items you’re keeping, organizing them by type as well.

6. Clean off your sink and counter area. It is so easy to use the counter as a place to collect clutter, so take the time to go through each item and decide if it stays or goes. Consider buying an organizational tray for your cleaners and soaps, but find a home for everything else. Counters are much more beautiful without clutter.

7. If you have a medicine drawer or cabinet in your kitchen, clean it out. Throw away empty boxes and expired meds.

8. Find your dish towels and designate a drawer or shelf to keep them in. Sort out the ones you no longer use and toss them or keep them as cleaning rags.

9. Get rid of the cups you no longer use. We are all guilty of hanging on to collectible cups that remain untouched for years after we bring them home. If you don’t use them, donate them to a local shelter in need or toss them.

10. Whether we like to admit it or not, most of us have a junk drawer in our home – very often in the kitchen. Empty it and only replace the items you need and use. The sauce packets that have been there since you moved in are not going to be used now if they haven’t been used yet.  Try to only keep items that you use often, like batteries or small tools.

Decluttering your kitchen is one of the first steps to getting your house ready for the market. If you’re considering listing your home, Advantage Real Estate’s friendly agents in Moberly MO  are here to help.

 

INCREASE YOUR CURB APPEAL

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re preparing to sell your home, curb appeal should be a priority. When someone is walking by or coming to your open house, the outside of your home is the first thing they will see. If there is no curb appeal, potential buyers may never even set foot in your home. Instead of ignoring your home’s outdoor appearance, consider making some budget-friendly changes that can add appeal to your home without breaking the bank.

1. Landscape Your Walkway

Create a smooth transition from the street to your front door. A clear path will allow a potential buyer’s eye to look straight to your home, rather than stopping to concentrate on unkept landscaping. Clean your walkway and create groupings of mid-size shrubby and florals close to the road and by your front door.

2. Hang a Wreath

Adding a wreath to your front door is a simple way to make your home look more welcoming. Consider a DIY wreath that is easy to create and cost-friendly.

3. Treat Your Lawn Better

Consistent upkeep is the best way to save money when it comes to your front lawn. You should apply a weed-and-feed treatment to your lawn as often as needed to supply the necessary nutrients while also killing off any weeds. Be sure to provide proper maintenance to your lawn mower and keep your mower blade sharp.

4. Add Porch Appeal

If you have a front porch, add an affordable outdoor furniture set. This can create an inviting space that will make potential buyers want to try it out!

5. Consider Color Accents

If your door or shutters need a fresh paint job, consider finding an accent color that will help your house pop. It doesn’t have to be extreme, just enough to catch the eye of a potential buyer. Be sure to test your paint color alongside your siding or brick before fully committing.

6. Restore Your Driveway

Your driveway can be a major eyesore if it isn’t taken care of. Fill any holes or cracks in your asphalt and apply a fresh sealer. A driveway that looks new is sure to help your curb appeal.

7. Power Wash Your Home

Sometimes, all your home needs is a good cleaning. If you don’t own power washer, rent one from your local home improvement store and take a weekend to power wash your entire exterior. Even if your home is relatively new, a deep cleaning can make it look like a new build.

These are all things that will help you if you decide to sell your home. Call Advantage Real Estate in Moberly, MO–we’re here to help!

WHAT YOU SAVE BY GETTING RID OF EXCESS STUFF BEFORE YOU MOVE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re getting ready to move, whether you are trying to sell your home or you’ve already purchased a new one, one of the first things that tends to cause stress in the process is the fear of packing all of your stuff. Whether you’ve been in your current space for a few months or several years, you’ve probably accumulated plenty of things you use and love, and even more items you haven’t touched since you brought them home. Now is the perfect time to purge those items and start fresh in your new home with intentional decor and less clutter.  Here are some of the things you’ll save when you let go:

Save Time 

Instead of waiting until you’re ready to move, start sorting through your items now. Sell, donate, or trash the items that you’ve decided don’t have a place in your future home. When you’re ready to pack up for your move, you’ll save so much time because you’ll have less to pack (and unpack).

Save Money 

Maybe some of the stuff you’re considering letting go of is worth something. If that is the case, consider having a garage sale or selling your clothes to resale boutiques in your area. Donate or dispose of whatever you don’t sell. Not only can you make money, but you can save money by moving less stuff. You may be able to fit what you love into a smaller moving truck if you get rid of those items that have gone unused for years! Randolph County has several drop off sites needing your donations.

Save Energy 

Sometimes items can take up a great deal of emotional energy. It is often in our nature to cling to things that may have meant something in our past, but have no place in our future. Get rid of that baggage and create an intentional environment with positive energy in your new home.

Save Space 

Instead of taking the clutter from your current place into your new home, save space by getting rid of it now. Open spaces in your new home will bring you peace of mind and joy.

If you’ve done all this saving and you’re ready to save even more on a new home, give us a call at Advantage Real Estate in Moberly, MO! 

 

HABITS OF A TIDY HOMEOWNER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We all have that friend whose home seems to be spotless, no matter the time of day. You could swing by for a morning coffee or stop over for dinner, and it always looks like someone just cleaned. Can you imagine if your house could be like that? Well, it can! Tidy homes are created out of habit. Here are 5 habits of people with tidy homes, so that you too can have a house that looks like a magazine feature all the time.

1. Having A Schedule

Letting clutter accumulate is the easiest way to get a messy home. If you are waiting until the mess is unbearable, you’re going to be overwhelmed by it every time. By creating a cleaning schedule, you can manage the cleaning of your home instead of avoiding it. Create tasks for each day, like a day for dusting and a day for vacuuming, so you are doing a little bit of deep cleaning every day.

2. Create Lists

Break down everything in your home that needs to be cleaned on a list. By creating a list, you will be able to cross off what you complete as you go. This visual helps you to stay on track and feel like you’re accomplishing your goals.

3. A Place For Everything

Organization is the key to a tidy home. If every item in your house has its own home, cleaning will be much easier. This especially helps to prevent junk drawers or counters overflowing with random household items.

4. Get Rid of Clutter

If a junk drawer is already overflowing in your house or you have a closet where you’ve been stuffing items with no other place to go, it is time to purge. Follow Marie Kondo’s advice and get rid of anything that doesn’t bring you joy – especially clutter. There are several drop off sites in Moberly, MO where you can leave your items for donation.

5. Baskets are Best

While it is important to maintain organization when using them, baskets can be extremely helpful to organize and reduce clutter – especially if you have children or pets. While it is easier to manage our own clutter, it can be difficult to put every toy or childcare item away properly when we are in a rush. By having decorative baskets throughout your home, you can quickly clear out an area if you have guests coming over without scrambling to put all those items where they are meant to go. It is important to add basket organization to your cleaning list, that way they do not become just another ‘junk drawer’ of sorts.

Work on creating these habits in your own home and soon enough, you’ll be the one who doesn’t mind when your friends stop by at any hour!

Getting a jump on spring cleaning will give you a leg up on selling your home in Randolph County MO.  If you’d like any of our Advantage Real Estate agents to stop by and take a look and see if there’s anything you’ve overlooked, just give us a call!

 

 

DIY SHIPLAP FOR $40

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks to Chip & Joanna Gaines, shiplap is filling homes across the country, and for good reason. Shiplap can give you a beautiful feature wall without having to choose an accent color you may not be crazy about in a few months. If done wisely, it doesn’t have to be expensive either. Here is a guide to create your own shiplap without breaking the bank.

What You’ll Need:
Nail Gun & Nails
Table Saw*
Compound Miter Saw*
Stud Finder
Underlayment Plywood
Construction Adhesive
1/8 Inch Tile Spacers
Spackling Paste
250 Grit Sandpaper
Paint (With Primer Included)

*Your Moberly, MO home improvement store where you purchase your plywood can typically cut your boards into planks if you do not have these tools at home. Make sure your boards will collectively be long enough to fit the wall you plan to shiplap.

Step 1: Prep Your Planks

Measure the wall you plan to shiplap and make sure you get enough plywood to cover the wall. You get to decide how wide you want your planks to be, but 6 inch planks are a great size for any home. Be sure to cut the final full-length planks into a variety of sizes so that you can achieve that staggered shiplap look.

Step 2: Hang Your First Row

Use your stud finder to locate the studs in your wall. This is where you’ll be nailing the boards in. Prep your first plank by applying the construction adhesive to the back of the wood. Lay that plank flush with your crown molding to ensure your planks will lay straight on the wall. Once in place, nail the plank twice, once on top and once on bottom, along the stud that the board is covering. Fill in the top row with as many pieces as needed.

Step 3: Use Your Spacers

Before placing the second row, use your spacers to ensure there will be an equal gap between planks. Be sure to do this for each new row of planks.

Step 4: Fill Nail Holes

Use your spackling paste to fill in all the holes you’ve created. Once it has dried, you will need to sand down the hardened paste to create a flush surface with the wood.

Step 5: Time For Paint

If your paint doesn’t have a primer included, be sure to prime the wall first and then apply your first coat. Use a second coat if needed!

You now have the perfect focal point in whatever room you’ve added your DIY shiplap wall to, all for the price of a week’s worth of coffee!

Shiplap will add value to your home in Randolph County, and give you satisfaction while relaxing in your new room.

 

 

Commercial opportunity at the edge of town

Put on your thinking cap and let’s visit this commercial space at the edge of town in Moberly, MO.  Just outside of city limits with no city ordinances!

In my past lives, I was a restaurant, a single family residence, and now I am 3 separate office spaces.  That means 3 rental incomes!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Currently has 3 rentals within this building, all with separate entrances and a shared/common kitchen and bathrooms.

 

Plenty of parking!

 

Nice offices inside

 

So bring your imagination and dreams! Call Advantage Real Estate 660-263-3393 and we’ll show you around!

Thinking of Selling? 4 Things NOT to Do…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So you’ve decided it’s time to make a move and put your house on the market. How exciting! Hopefully, you’ve brought a rockin’ Advantage Real Estate

 

REALTOR® on board to help you list your property.  Remember, we are the ONLY agency in Moberly, MO with membership in TWO Multiple Listing Services (MLS’s). As you start checking things off your to-do list to get your property ready, it’s also important to pay mind of what not to do. Below are a handful of things to get you started.

 

Don’t over-improve.
As you ready your home for sale, you may realize you will get a great return on your investment if you make a couple of changes. Updating the appliances or replacing that cracked cabinet in the bathroom are all great ideas. However, it’s important not to over-improve.   Perhaps the prospective buyers for your house are family oriented and want a basement space for their kids to play in? Some may want an unfinished basement that’s used for storage and storms.   Make any needed fixes to your space, and for sure make sure it’s super clean, but don’t go above and beyond—you may lose money doing so.

Don’t over-decorate.
Over-decorating is just as bad as over-improving. You may love the look of lace and lavender, but your potential buyer may enter your home and cringe. When prepping for sale, neutralize your decorating scheme so it’s more universally palatable.

 

Don’t hang around.
Your agent calls to let you know they will be bringing buyers by this afternoon. Great! You rally your whole family, Fluffy the dog included, to be waiting at the door with fresh baked cookies and big smiles. Right? Wrong. Buyers want to imagine themselves in your space, not be confronted by you in your space. Trust, it’s awkward for them to go about judging your home while you stand in the corner smiling like a maniac. Get out of the house, take the kids with you, and if you can’t leave for whatever reason, at least go sit in the backyard. (On the other hand, if you’re buying a home and not selling, then making it personal is the way to go, especially when writing your offer letter. Pull those heart strings!)

 

Don’t take things personally.
Real estate is a business, but buying and selling homes is very, very emotional. However, when selling your homes, try your very best not to take things personally. When a buyer low balls you or says they will need to replace your prized 1970s vintage shag carpet with something “more modern,” try not to raise your hackles.

 

We’re here to help you!  Let’s talk about the market, what to expect during the process, and what we can do FOR you to take some of the pressure out of the process.  Contact Advantage Real Estate today!  We’re selling Randolph County (and surrounding counties) one yard at a time…

 

Real Estate – The Safest Investment For Building Wealth

For President’s Day, I just wanted to send along a couple of real estate related quotes that I came across.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Real estate cannot be lost or stolen, nor can it be carried away. Purchased with common sense, paid for in full, and managed with reasonable care, it is about the safest investment in the world.” — Franklin D. Roosevelt, U.S. President

 

Every person who invests in well-selected real estate in a growing section of a prosperous community adopts the surest and safest method of becoming independent, for real estate is the basis of wealth.” — Theodore Roosevelt, U.S. President

 

Whether it is as a home, or as an investment, real estate truly is one of the safest, and best ways to build wealth.  Here in Moberly, MO there are great opportunities whether you are buying, selling or making an investment!

 

Hopefully you are enjoying a day off due to the holiday! I am not off today (working by choice, of course), so if you want to chat about building your wealth safely, feel free to give one of our agents a ring!  660-263-3393

Looking For A New Place For Your Business In Moberly, MO?

Two buildings for 1 great price!

 

You need offices…. this is the place for you! Call center perhaps? You decide!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Building 1 contains 9 offices and 3200 square feet, men’s & women’s restrooms, kitchen/break room, newer metal siding and roof! Air purification system and extensive telephone system already in place (valued at $60,000).

Building 2 is 2400 square feet with 4 offices, an open meeting/conference room (with separate entrance), unisex restroom, and recently updated metal siding and roof!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finishes in both buildings include solid core interior doors, fluorescent lighting, good quality drop grid ceiling, 4″ baseboard trim, ceramic tile and carpeting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And don’t forget your outside picnics under the Pavilion which has electricity!  Great break area for your employees perhaps!

 

Lots of parking on a 1 acre lot is perfect for your business! Another option to these properties could include utilizing one building for yourself, and leasing the other building to make your mortgage payment.  Possible Owner Financing terms available!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contact Advantage Real Estate to schedule your personal tour of this property!

We believe in Small Business!

Downtown Moberly is made up of so many hard working businesses and owners; it’s an integral part of our community!

Take a look at 216 N Clark St.

The main level storefront would be perfect for a retail or office setting.

 

Look at the floor plan!  There’s a huge warehouse space in back which should suit any business.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upstairs there’s an efficiency apartment that’s been completely transformed and brings in steady income each month for the owner of this property.

 

 

It comes furnished with most furniture you see in these photos.

 

 

 

 

Each unit is separately metered, except for water.  This property may qualify for some of the Moberly Downtown CID incentives to help a new business get going!  Please ask us about it!

This property is listed by Advantage Real Estate, Moberly, MO.  More details can be found at https://bit.ly/2zSyVXn

This Historic home at 816 Gilman St., Moberly, MO is for sale!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s your chance to own this one of a kind prestigious home!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elaborate details, original woodwork, several stained glass windows

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Light and bright kitchen with breakfast nook and walk in pantry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two staircases, pocket doors too! Original Carriage  House in back

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Original Carriage  House in back

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This home sits on about ½ acre in one of Moberly’s upscale neighborhoods.

What Does MLK Have To Do With Real Estate?

 

 

Fill in the blank…

“I have a _________…”

It doesn’t take a psychic to know what word you chose.

Was it “dream”?

Good chance it was. We all know this line from Martin Luther King, Jr.’s famous speech. So when we hear those first three words, it sort of naturally comes to mind.

But what many people aren’t aware of is how much he affected the lives of real estate agents, buyers, and sellers.

It was his death that gave Congress the last push needed to pass the Fair Housing Act, back in 1968. It’s pretty involved, but to put it simply…

This was put in place to ban racial discrimination in housing. You can’t be refused the rental or purchase of a house, based upon your race.

Seems simple enough to most people now. A given, if you will. But it didn’t happen overnight. And believe it or not, it still can and does come up.

But guess who’s a big part of making sure this Act is followed…

On the front lines, it’s real estate agents. We’re tasked with making people aware that discrimination based upon race (and many other things) are not acceptable, and they must refuse to work with anyone who wants to do so.

Real estate agents are proud to be a part of this ongoing history.

Today is the day where we take a moment to reflect and pay him respect. It’s also a good day to share some insight into how much more responsibility real estate agents have than meets the eye.

If you or someone you know is looking for a home to buy or sell  in the Moberly MO area, give the friendly agents at Advantage Real Estate a call.

Tax Deductions for Homeowners: How the New Tax Law Affects Mortgage Interest

Tax changes for 2019 change the landscape for homeowners.

Tax season is upon us once again, and to make it even more interesting this year, the tax code has changed — along with the rules about tax deductions for homeowners. The biggest change? Many homeowners who used to write off their property taxes and the interest they pay their mortgage will no longer be able to.

Stay calm. This doesn’t automatically mean your taxes are going up. Here’s a roundup of the rules that will affect homeowners — and how big of a change to expect.

Standard Deduction: Big Change

The standard deduction, that amount everyone gets, whether they have actual deductions or not, nearly doubled under the new law. It’s now $24,000 for married, joint-filing couples (up from $13,000). It’s $18,000 for heads of household (up from $9,550). And $12,000 for singles (up from $6,500).

Many more people will now get a better deal taking the standard than they would with their itemizable write-offs.

For perspective, the number of homeowners who will be able to deduct their mortgage interest under the new rules will fall from around 32 million to about 14 million, the federal government says. That’s about a 56% drop.

“This doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll pay more taxes,” says Evan Liddiard, a CPA and director of federal tax policy for the National Association of REALTORS® in Washington, D.C. “It just means that they’ll no longer get a tax incentive for buying or owning a home.”

So will you be able to itemize, or will you be in standard deduction land? This calculator can give you an estimate.

If the answer is standard deduction, you’ll be pleased to know that tax forms are easier when you don’t itemize, says Liddiard. Find instructions for IRS Form 1040 here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mortgage Interest Deduction: Incremental Change

The new law caps the mortgage interest you can write off at loan amounts of no more than $750,000. However, if your loan was in place by Dec. 14, 2017, the loan is grandfathered, and the old $1 million maximum amount still applies. Since most people don’t have a mortgage larger than $750,000, they won’t be affected by the cap.

But if you live in a pricey place (like San Francisco, where the median housing price is well over a million bucks), or you just have a seriously expensive house, the new federal tax laws mean you’re not going to be able to write off interest paid on debt over the $750,000 cap.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

State and Local Tax Deduction: Degree of Change Varies by Location

The state and local taxes you pay — like income, sales, and property taxes — are still itemizable write-offs. That’s called the SALT deduction in CPA lingo. But. The tax changes for 2019 (that’s tax year 2018) mean you can’t deduct more than $10,000 for all your state and local taxes combined, whether you’re single or married. (It’s $5,000 per person if you’re married but filing separately.)

The SALT cap is bad news for people in areas with high taxes. The majority of homeowners in around 20 states have been writing off more than $10,000 in SALT each year, so they’ll lose some of this deduction. “This is going to hurt people in high-tax areas like New York and California,” says Lisa Greene-Lewis, CPA and expert for TurboTax in California. New Yorkers, for example, were taking SALT deductions averaging $22,000 a household.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rental Property Deduction: No Change

The news is happier if you’re a landlord. There continue to be no limits on the amount of mortgage debt interest or state and local taxes you can write off on rental property. And you can keep writing off operating expenses like depreciation, insurance, lawn care, and utilities on Schedule E.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Home Equity Loans: Big Change

You can continue to write off the interest on a home equity or second mortgage loan (if you itemize), but only if you used the proceeds to substantially better your home and only if the total, combined with your first mortgage, doesn’t go over the $750,000 cap ($1 million for loans in existence on Dec. 15, 2017). If you used the equity loan to pay medical expenses, take a cruise, or anything other than home improvements, that interest is no longer tax deductible.

Here’s a big FYI: The new rules don’t grandfather in old home equity loans if the proceeds were used for something other than substantial home improvement. If you took one out five years ago to, say, pay your child’s college tuition, you have to stop writing off that interest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4 Tips for Navigating the New Tax Law

1. Single people may get more tax benefits from buying a house, Liddiard says. “They can often reach [and potentially exceed] the standard deduction more quickly.” You can check how much you’re likely to owe or get back under the new law on this tax calculator.

2. Student loan debt is deductible, up to $2,500 if you’re repaying, whether you itemize or not.

3. Charitable deductions and some medical expenses remain itemizable. If you’re generous or have had a big year for medical bills, these, added to your mortgage interest, may be enough to bump you over the standard deduction hump and into the write-off zone.

4. If your mortgage is over the $750,000 cappay it down faster so you don’t eat the interest. You can add a little to the principal each month, or make a 13th payment each year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. If there’s anything Advantage Real Estate can assist you with, don’t hesitate to contact our office.

 

5 Tricks to Keep Your Pipes from Exploding This Winter

#1 Turn On Your Faucets

If the temperatures have dropped into freezing and intend to stay there, turning on your faucets — both indoors and out — can keep water moving through your system and slow down the freezing process. There’s no need to waste gallons of water: Aim for about five drips per minute.

 

 

 

 

 

 

#2 Open Cabinet Doors

During cold weather, open any cabinet doors covering plumbing in the kitchen and bathroom. This allows the home’s warm air to better circulate, which can help prevent the exposed piping from freezing. While this won’t help much with pipes hidden in walls, ceilings, or under the home, it can keep water moving and limit the dangerous effects of freezing weather.

 

 

 

 

 

 

#3 Wrap Your Pipes

If your pipes are already on their merry way towards freezing, wrapping them with warm towels might do the trick. You can cover them with the towels first and then pour boiling water on top, or use already-wet towels — if your hands can stand the heat (use gloves for this). This should help loosen the ice inside and get your system running again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#4 Pull Out Your Hairdryer

A hairdryer (or heat gun) can be a godsend when your pipes are freezing. If hot rags aren’t doing the trick, try blowing hot air directly on the pipes. Important note: You don’t want to use a blow torch or anything that produces direct flames, which can damage your pipes and turn a frozen pipe into an even worse disaster. You’re trying to melt the ice — not your pipes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#5 Shut Off The Water if Pipes Are Frozen

Have your pipes already frozen? Turn off the water immediately. (Hopefully you know where the master shut-off is, but if not, now’s the time to find it!)

Make sure to close off any external water sources, like garden hose hookups. This will prevent more water from filling the system, adding more ice to the pile, and eventually bursting your pipes — the worst-case scenario. This also will help when the water thaws; the last thing you want after finally fixing your frozen pipes is for water to flood the system — and thus, your home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remarkable Ranch Style Home For Sale In Railwest Subdivision Moberly MO

 

 

 

 

 

 

This newly built spacious home in Railwest Subdivision has an open floor plan gives this home a cozy feeling! The fireplace is an added plus!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bake Santa some cookies in this luxurious kitchen OR  just enjoy family time cooking together!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Enjoy upgraded features this home has to offer like: wide plank wood laminate flooring, quartz kitchen counter tops, and onyx counter tops in bathrooms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bonus: covered back patio with a view over a large fenced backyard including a saltwater pool for many summers to come!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looking for a new place to call home?  We’re here to serve your Real Estate needs in Randolph AND surrounding counties!

 

 

Beautiful Spacious Ranch Style House For Sale in Moberly MO

This two level 4BR 3.5BA home features 3454 total finished sqft.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lower level boasts a woodburning fireplace and a second kitchen!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lots of windows for enjoying natural light!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sit in the enclosed front courtyard or private back deck & enjoy the beautiful wooded views!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our friendly real estate agents are happy to schedule a personal showing for you today!

Click on the link to view the listing: 1606 Parkwood  Dr, Moberly MO https://bit.ly/2NOruKY

 

 

 

3 Brilliant Hacks to Make Snow Shoveling Less Miserable

You are guaranteed to shovel  snow while living in Moberly MO.  There are, however, ways to make the process much easier. Here are three simple hacks to make the morning after a snowfall much less stressful.

#1 Spray Your Shovel with Cooking Oil

Snow sticking to your shovel makes an already arduous task even more obnoxious. Avoid it with this hack: Lightly coat your shovel with non-stick cooking oil to make snow slide right off. No more time wasted removing snow from your snow remover. (You can substitute a spray lubricant like WD-40, but the downside is it’s toxic.)

 

 

 

 

 

#2 Lay Out a Tarp Before the Snow

If you like short cuts, this technique, billed as “the laziest way imaginable” to clear snow, according to a tutorial from “Instructables,” has got your name on it. The day before an expected snowfall, lay a tarp on your walkway. When the snow finishes falling, just pull out the tarp, and voilà: an instantly cleared walkway. (Word to the wise: Make sure pedestrians won’t trip on your tarp; include a sign or use this technique in your backyard walkway if you’re concerned.)

The technique requires a tarp, firewood, and twine as well as some prep work. Pre-storm, use firewood to weigh down your tarp — you don’t want it flying away in the wind! — and tie the twine to both the tarp and to a shovel standing upright in your yard. You’ll use the shovel to pull out the snow-laden tarp.

Although this method might be faster than shoveling, it does require manpower. After all, a cubic foot of snow can weigh between 7 and 20 pounds. So don’t get too ambitious with the size of your tarp or you might not be able to pull it once it’s full of snow.

 

 

 

 

#3 Make a Homemade De-icing Cocktail

De-icers make snow removal easier by cutting through the tough, icy layers that are a pain to remove with a shovel. But an easy solution should be easy on your property as well. Many commercial de-icers are pretty harsh.

Commercial ice-melting substances — magnesium chloride, calcium chloride, potassium chloride, and sodium chloride (salt) — all cause damage to the environment, according to the University of Maryland’s Home and Garden Information Center. They can also damage concrete sidewalks and driveways, which mean hefty repair costs later.

A better solution: Make your own de-icer using rubbing alcohol or vinegar. You’ll save money, too. Commercial melters typically cost $8 or more. Plus, you’ll avoid the hassle of trekking to the hardware store to stock up.

Use vinegar before a storm to make ice and snow removal easier:

  • Combine 3 parts vinegar to 1 part water.
  • Spray or pour gently (you still want to avoid runoff into your landscape) before a storm.

To keep the sidewalks and steps from icing after a storm:

  • Combine 2 parts rubbing alcohol with 1 part water.
  • Apply to minimize runoff.

 

 

 

 

 

#4 Barring a move to a snow-free state or barricading your family inside all winter, there’s no way to avoid the endless task of shoveling snow.

If you decide that winter and snow shoveling is just not for you, we’d be happy at Advantage Real Estate to assist you in selling  your home.