Archives for category: buyers

I’m looking back at 2012 and reflecting. Yes, I’m a month late, but hey- I’ve been super busy!

In 2012 I helped 9 families into great new homes. 6 of those were in Barclay Farm. 1 new construction deal, 5 sets of first time homebuyers.

I exceeded my own expectations AND set a new earnings record for myself.

This would normally be a “good” year but I’m going to go ahead and call it a “GREAT” year because it was done in 10 months with 1 hand tied behind my back. (Or holding & nursing a baby.)

2012 was not easy, but it was definitely great!

Now…. Here’s the fun part… Our team is growing! We are hiring another Buyers Agent. Who do you know who’d like to get in now, just as things are totally heating up?

I love working with first-time homebuyers. I also love working with friends-of-friends. And I especially love when my clients are BOTH!
Big huge congratulations to Amanda & Paul, we had a super fun time looking and they ended up in a fantastic home that they’re busily remodeling to their tastes. Can’t wait to see what they do with it.
The icing on the cake arrived at my office today, this makes me smile ear to ear!

I love my job ūüôā

Get ready to shop!

I’ve been working on this list for my First Time Home Buyers and figured it was time to share it! There’s money to be spent outside of your down payment, utilities & mortgage….. don’t let these items take you by surprise!

Examples of typical move-in expenses:

– Window treatments and hardware. This can be done for as little as about $25 per window but can easily cost quite a bit more! If your budget is tight, you can always start with simple blinds and add curtains later. Bargain shoppers, be sure to check The Christmas Tree Shop and Overstock.com!
Furniture.¬†For a good estimate on what it will cost to furnish¬†each room, pick up an Ikea catalog¬†– they put together entire rooms and list the price. Of course you could spend more or less but this will give you a great¬†reference point. The biggest furniture sales occur on Memorial Day, Labor Day, 4th of July, Presidents Day, and after New Years. Here’s a great link on sale times: http://www.furniturebrains.com/besttimestobuy.htm¬†Don’t forget about outdoor furniture! Also The Dump (nearest location = Turnersville)¬†can be great but they are only open on weekends.
– Small Appliances. Depending on your previous living arrangement, you may need to buy things like : vacuum, mixer, toaster, microwave, etc.
Large Appliances. Check¬†your contract to see what’s staying in the home & what’s not. Normal appliances include washer, dryer, refrigerator, dishwasher, stove/range/oven.
Area rugs. – Those of you buying homes with Hardwoods will need some rugs.¬†You can get a good quality 9×12 area rug¬†for about $300, but you can spend a LOT more. Lowe’s has surprisingly good prices on rugs, and a decent selection.
The Outdoor Stuff. Lawnmower, weed wacker, shovels, rakes, leaf blower, gardening¬†tools – these can get expensive. OR, if you are not the outdoorsy DIY type, get a quote from a local landscaping company on what upkeep will cost. (I can recommend services based on¬†your neighborhood!)¬†Also, did you buy a pool? That’s an additional category! Watch for off-season sales at Home Depot & Lowes – i.e. grills in September/October are up to 75% off.
– Lights. Does your new home have overhead lighting in every room? Chances are there are some fixtures, but you will need lamps (tall and tabletop). Try Christmas Tree Shop, Home Goods & Lowes for great deals!
– Paint. Whether you will be painting yourself or hiring a service, make sure you factor this expense in.
Textiles & Linens. Towels, bedding, pillows, etc. I recommend Ikea and Home Goods!
It’s not all bad news though….
COUPONS – Lowe’s, Bed Bath & Beyond, Home Depot, and¬†Crate & Barrel¬†will send new homeowners amazing coupons, like 20% off of everything in the store. Do not start shopping without¬†these!¬† They get your name & address right from USPS when you¬†fill out a¬†“change of address” and set up forwarding, so make sure you do that about 14 days before¬†you actually move.

Buy a house… I just did!

And let me do some bragging РI now have a 4br / 2bath brick Cape Cod in move-in condition with .25 Acre yard for LESS than I used to pay in rent.

Allow me to reiterate…. this 1 bedroom /¬†studio-style apartment:

Entire living space of apartment pictured here.

cost more per month than this house:

Finally, some space!

We made an offer.

We got a counteroffer.

We made a best & final.

I’m starting to unravel the mystery of “Why do buyers call their agent continuously for updates even when there isn’t one?” My mom, who’s handling the negotiations, probably would not appreciate hourly calls.

This is me:

So with the ever-expanding belly and the blossoming Real Estate career, it is now time¬†to embark on my very own home search. Funny thing it is, to be a Buyer’s Agent and your very own Buyer.

I am constantly trying to get my buyers to do certain things – narrow their search to a small geographic¬†area, make a list of 5 (and only 5) “must-have’s”, and become both educated & realistic on pricing.

Now it’s my turn.

Liza says: Where’s my 3 bedroom / 2 bath totally renovated Cape in¬†Haddonfield with reasonable taxes? Something must be wrong with my MLS because nothing is coming up in the 225k range!

RealEstateLiza says:¬†Wake up Liza. It doesn’t exist.

Liza says: Oh here’s a 5 bedroom in Collingswood, the description sounds nice, it’s only 189,000 and it’s been on the market for 500 days. I bet it’s perfect, let’s go see it!

RealEstateLiza says: There are no pictures because it’s a horrendous¬†dump, and if an investor didn’t snatch it up in 500 days, there’s something seriously wrong! Don’t waste your time!

Liza says: This awesome Haddon Township home is perfect! Convenient to Route 130!

RealEstateLiza says: Are you kidding? You can literally see Camden from your front yard. See? It’s right there. No way.

…and the search / internal battle continues…

Congratulations to returning Cherry Hill resident Steve & his beautiful wife (and new Cherry Hill resident) Avery, and their awesome family! I loved working with you guys & made new friends along the way.

Here we have Steve & his cool mom Rhona in front of the new home.

Special shout-out to “The Internet” which allowed us to work remotely so well. Tech savvy buyers + tech savvy agent = endless relocation possibilities!
So happy that The Keri Ricci Team had the pleasure of working with such a nice family.