Tag Archives: search property

Is a Fixer-Upper For You?

Many people buying a home for the first time believe they will know what home to buy because they will fall in love. This is somewhat true, but as the saying goes “you can’t judge a book by it’s cover.” In competitive real estate markets, love will take some work and the question you have to ask yourself is how much love (and work) are you comfortable putting in?

Every homebuyer needs to be flexible in certain areas of their criteria. In an ideal world, a buyer finds the perfect home in the area they want and the house is move-in ready (or a turn-key property in realtor speak).

A fixer-upper may be an option to consider

If location is the most important factor in your search and nothing is available in your price range, you might want expand your price range. I’m not only advocating looking at higher priced properties, but also those at a lower price point, which will require some level of renovation. If you find listings matching all of your other criteria but are rough around the edges, take a look and keep an open mind to the possibilities. In competitive real estate markets, the properties with more than the average days on market tend to be fixer-uppers. One of the biggest positives of buying a fixer-upper, is your home can reflect your tastes instead of the seller’s. Another positive is you have a better opportunity to negotiate since many buyers do not want to put in the time, money, or effort for renovations. Less competition from other buyers means more leverage when it comes time to negotiate. Once you have purchased the property and made improvements, you will see a much quicker appreciation in your asset’s value. The improvements do not have to be top-of -the-line renovations to see a quick appreciation, many simpler projects can bring a strong return on your investment.

Keep in mind renovations are not for everyone. Unless you plan to do a renovation yourself, you can never guarantee how long the work will actually take. Projects can be delayed for all kinds of reasons but the worst case scenario comes from the fact not everything can found during inspection and what can start as a simple project can turn into something major. A dream home can turn into a money pit, but a looked over fixer-upper, can be the home you never knew you always wanted.

Buying a home is an emotional process. Like in dating, don’t be discouraged by thinking all the good ones are taken. Sometimes taking a second look on an option that doesn’t seem perfect might become better than what you thought you wanted.

If you are interested in searching property for sale, contact the Realtors of Matthew and Alisa Group.

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Posted in Buy Property, Real Estate Tips, Renovation, Restoration, ROI | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Search MLS Listings and Use Our Website’s Tools

We designed our website to give you the tools you need to achieve your real estate goals. We believe the combination of the best technology and attentive and knowledgeable Realtors will give you the advantage  in a competitive real estate market.

As you know, our website features every listing offered on the MLS, including those for sale by owner. Our website updates with the MLS each hour, so you know are getting the most accurate information available. On every one of the listings you have access to on our site, you can take advantage of the following:

  • Contact a Realtor with questions on the listing or to schedule a showing. No need to pick up the phone or even switch over to your email client since your request can be done directly from the listing.
  • Save the listing to a list of favorites, so you can easily access it later. You can use this to keep track of listings or to have easy access to listings you want to compare.
  • Save notes to the listing for you to reference later. By keeping your notes on our website, your notes will all be in one place and available for you whenever you want them.
  • Calculate mortgage payments with the integrated mortgage calculator. The mortgage calculator is adjustable, so you can change the down payment, interest rate, and loan term.
  • Get the opinion of friends and family with the ability to email the listing to anyone you want or share the listing to your social networks: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest share buttons are all available on the page.
  • If you find some value in the Zillow Zestimate®, you can access this figure for each listing as well as many market and area demographics area compiled by Zillow. Although, if you rely on the Zillow Zestimate®, we should talk so I can explain how my knowledge will give you a better understanding of the real estate market than a number spit out by an algorithm.

We believe these tools will help make the most of your online search for property, but we also think your Realtor is another tool to be utilized in any real estate transaction. We are here to help and offer the guidance and advise you will not get from a website.

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Posted in Real Estate Technology, Real Estate Tips, Real Estate Websites, Realtor, Search Property | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

3 Tips to Stay Ahead of the Current Real Estate Market

Do you feel like you are a few steps behind the real estate market? Is every house you inquire on already under agreement?

This is one problem with the large national real estate websites like Zillow and Trulia. These sites were not built with the intention to provide information, so they are not concerned with whether listings are current or accurate. Their intent is to sell leads to real estate agents and, to this end, the sites will withhold certain information to encourage you to contact one of their paying agents.

Our website is updated with the MLS each hour, so you know the information is current. Another benefit we can offer with our website is the ability to save your searches and have the system send you daily email summaries of any properties matching your criteria. The triggers prompting a listing to be added to your daily email alert include a new addition to the market, a price reduction, and status changes, which is helpful when a property goes back on the market after a buyer falls through. Watch the video above to see how easy it is to set up daily email alerts for MLS online casino listings.

You should also be aware every property does not make it to the internet. Some sellers do not want their property online at all, so the property is shopped around within the real estate community. Other properties are shared among agents before going public, so once it does hit the market buyers are already lined up. If you would like to set up a consult, our Realtors would be able to get a good idea of what you are looking for and alert you of any pocket listing matching your search criteria.

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Posted in Real Estate Sales Market, Real Estate Technology, Real Estate Tips, Real Estate Websites, Realtor, Search Property | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Real Estate Sales Market's Paradox of Choice

I recently watched an episode of TED Talks featuring psychologist Barry Schwartz discussing the Paradox of Choice (also the name of his book). According to Barry Schwartz, the American mantra of more choices equaling more freedom, which in turn results in more welfare is not only wrong, it is harmful. Too many choices affect a person”s ability to choose by causing decision paralysis, unable to make any choice at all. If the person does make a choice, she often becomes dissatisfied with the choice made, because, she believes a least one perfect option will be present among the multitude of options. If the one chosen turns out to fall short of perfection, buyer”s remorse can set in and the blame often falls on her own ability to make a correct decision. A fear of this buyer”s remorse can also prevent a person from taking action at all because we are aware of our heightened expectations resulting from living in a time of limitless choice.

http://youtu.be/VO6XEQIsCoM

After watching Barry Schwartz’s lecture I started thinking how it relates to the online casino current Boston real estate sales market. I hear complaints from buyers and fellow real estate agents regarding the low inventory and how new listings to the real estate sales market are selling within days of being listed. When the sales market was saturated with inventory, property sat and sat. It’s hard not to make the connection between buyers having fewer options and their increased ability to make a decision.

According to MLS data, from March 15th-April 15th of this year (2012) 289 single family homes and condos were listed for sale in the downtown Boston neighborhoods, 225 properties went under-agreement, and they averaged 31 days on the real estate sales market. The same time period last year (2011) there were 377 single family home and condos listed for sale in the downtown Boston neighborhoods, 184 went under-agreement, and spent an average of 120 days on the sales market.

Barry Schwartz said “the secret to happiness is low expectations.” It is because when expectations are low, the opportunity to be pleasantly surprised is present! Many agents and sellers feel the current real estate sales market is a pleasant and welcome change after the mortgage crisis a few years ago. And buyers, knowing there are few options, are less likely to talk themselves out making a decision on their new home. The result is less stagnation in the market, which is good news for both buyers and sellers of property.

If you are interested in searching property for sale or speaking with a Realtor, contact the Realtors of Matthew and Alisa Group Real Estate.

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Posted in Boston Property, Buy Property, Property for Sale, Real Estate Sales Market, Real Estate Transactions, Search Property | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Buying a Home: How Do You Know If You Are Ready?

If you have been searching for rentals in Boston in the last couple years, you may have noticed that it is tough. Inventory is limited and prices keep rising. There are three things renters can do. One: pay the rising rates. Two: look farther outside the city than originally planned. Three: stop renting and purchase. Many people today feel that investing in real estate is safer than investing in stocks and with good reason. Real estate in Boston has not been hurt as much as the rest of the country and rentals in the city are consistently in high demand. If you are on the fence on buying real estate, here are a couple signs you may be ready.

Buying real estate in Boston may be a better option than rentingOne: you know what you want. If you have a realistic idea of the size you need and the location where you want to live for the next few years and you  haven’t found it on the rental market, take a look at what is on the sales market. The rental market in Boston favors landlords. The inventory is limited and owners can get not only their asking price but also first month’s rent, last month’s rent, and security deposit (each equal to one month) and not have to pay a broker’s fee.

Two: you have the finances. The upfront costs of renting an apartment in Boston are higher than most cities around the nation. Many people looking for quality rentals in Boston  are surprised how little they get for the money. With many banks loosening restrictions on who can get mortgages, it is worth your time to speak with a mortgage broker about types of loans and available rates.

If you are weary of buying because you do not want to be locked into a mortgage on the chance your career moves you to another city, keep in mind that you could hold onto your home as an investment property. With a tenant paying rent, you can build equity while someone pays your mortgage for you.

Contact the Realtors of Matthew and Alisa Group Real Estate if you are interested in learning more about purchasing a home.

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Posted in Boston Property, Buy Property, First Home, Real Estate Sales Market, Real Estate Tips, Rent vs Buy, Rental Property | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Our Real Estate Blog

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Welcome to our real estate blog.

We are Matthew Gaskill and Alisa Peterson, two Realtors with Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty. We formed Matthew and Alisa Group Real Estate in 2011 because we were searching for a better way to better serve our clients through the process of real estate transactions. Each of us came to the team with different strengths, backgrounds, and philosophies yet sharing the core values of customer service, integrity, honesty, and hard work. Because of this, we can offer two Realtors for the price of one.

And as the next step in the development of Matthew and Alisa Group Real Estate, we are proud to introduce magrealestate.com.

Matthew and Alisa Group Real Estate Blog and Website

We invested in this real estate website because it is the most advanced real estate technology available for us to offer to our clients. The user friendly interface works together with a powerful search tool accessing all available property for sale and for rent in the Metro Boston area. These dynamic features make our website a one stop real estate searching tool that can be accessed on any computer or mobile device.

If you are renting or selling your property:

  • Your property will be featured on our Exclusive Listings page.
  • Our website syndicates your property to the sites buyers and renters use when searching for real estate.
  • With integrated social media, your property can gain viral traction and get maximum exposure on multiple social networks.

If you are searching for a home to buy or rent:

  • Save searches and receive updates when new properties are listed that match your criteria.
  • Save notes to your profile with your thoughts and questions on properties you view.
  • Email any listing to anyone you choose.
  • Share properties via social networks to get the opinions of your sphere.
  • Use integrated Walk Score, Yelp, education.com, and Zillow functions for information on a neighborhood or area.

We believe in “Luxury Properties and Service at Every Price Point” and we appreciate the opportunity to prove it.

The Realtors behind Matthew and Alisa Group Real Estate BlogLook around and contact us if you have any questions or if we can help in any way. If you want to be notified of our latest real estate articles and happenings in and around Boston connect with us on social media, subscribe to our monthly email newsletters, or subscribe to our blog via RSS or email.

Again, welcome to our real estate blog and website.

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Posted in Alisa Peterson, Matthew Gaskill, Real Estate Technology, Real Estate Websites, Realtor, Sotheby's International Realty | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment