Rachel (Hillman) Foy - Hillman Homes



Posted by Rachel (Hillman) Foy on 3/25/2020

If you're getting ready to put your house on the market, your mind is probably flooded with dozens of unanswerable questions. Much of your uncertainty may revolve around the marketability of your home and how quickly a qualified buyer will come along.

Although there are factors over which you have little control, there are several things you can do to tip the scales in your direction.

Other than sprucing up your home and yard to maximize their visual appeal, choosing a top-notch real estate agent is the single most important step you can take. It's not only crucial to select an agent who is both experienced and proactive, but you'll also want to find a professional with whom you have a good rapport. You can usually get a pretty good idea of their experience and sales history from online profiles, but the only way to know whether they're a good fit for your needs and personality is by meeting with them face to face.

If you have the time and inclination, it can also be to your advantage to interview more than one candidate. The agent you ultimately choose will have a direct bearing on virtually all aspects of the sales process. By choosing a professional who is dedicated, knowledgeable, and easy to work with, you'll be taking a big step toward getting your house sold within the shortest period of time. A good agent will keep you motivated, informed, and focused on keeping your home in marketable condition. They'll also help you with everything from pricing and negotiating to problem solving and setting up appointments.

There are several other things you can do to increase the chances of attracting potential buyers and offers. Creating as much curb appeal as possible can go a long way toward making a great first impression. The concept of curb appeal can encompass many different elements, but the battle is half won when your lawn, bushes, and trees are kept neatly trimmed at all times. Weather permitting, displaying colorful potted flowers and hanging baskets is another way to add a lot of eye appeal to your home. Simple improvements like painting your front steps, sealcoating your driveway, or touching up the paint on window shutters or porch railings can also help enhance your home's curb appeal.

Although interior painting can be time-consuming and a bit messy, it's often one of the most cost-effective ways to make a positive impression on potential buyers. If your walls are looking scuffed, faded, or otherwise neglected, a fresh coat of neutral, beige, or grey paint can often make a huge difference in the eye-appeal of your home. Making sure your carpets are clean, counter tops are immaculate, and your windows are crystal clear are other ways to put your best foot forward when house hunters are scheduled to visit your home.





Posted by Rachel (Hillman) Foy on 8/14/2019

Although statistics may not be reflective of your individual real-estate buying habits, the "typical" homeowner tends to stay put in their home for around a decade -- give or take.

One of the few "drawbacks" of being a long-term homeowner is that, over time, you tend to forgot many of the details of the home-buying process.

However, an advantage of buying a home in the Internet Age is the availability of instant information on everything from interest rates and real estate agent reviews to house hunting tips and choosing a moving company.

Your Real Estate Journey

Buying a home can be an extremely satisfying experience... or it can be filled with frustration and disappointment. However, by having a basic understanding of how the house-buying process works, you'll be more effective at preparing yourself for what's to come, anticipating what you need to do, and creating a clear picture in your mind of your requirements and ideal living environment. As various thought leaders have said over the years: If you're not clear on what you want, you'll probably end up with something else!

The cornerstones of a successful real estate search are knowing your credit score, having enough money on hand for a sufficient down payment and closing costs, enlisting the help of an experienced real estate agent, and being proactive about meeting with mortgage bankers and shopping for a competitive interest rate (and terms).

Staying organized, creating priority lists, and continually educating yourself about the nuts and bolts of buying a home will help ensure that your real estate experience will be a positive one. Even though there may be a few bumps and detours along the way, taking the time to be organized and well informed will help you stay on track and produce the type of results you and your family are looking for.

Although it does pay to read articles from credible online sources, you don't have to achieve "expert status" as a house hunter and real estate buyer. If you choose your real estate agent with care, they should be able to provide you with the expertise, advice, and professional guidance you need to clear the hurdles and make it all the way to the finish line!

How does one choose a great real estate agent? The ideal way is to get a referral from a trusted family member, friend, coworker, or neighbor. If someone you trust can attest to the service level and results a particular real estate agent has produced, then chances are good that your experience would be comparable. If more than one person you know recommends a top-notch agent, then that creates a "multiplier effect." In other words, it increases the likelihood that you'll be satisfied with the service and results this agent provides. If you don't know anyone personally who has worked with a great agent, there are well-known websites that post reviews, years of experience, and relevant sales information on licensed real estate agents.





Posted by Rachel (Hillman) Foy on 7/24/2019

So, you’re looking for a real estate agent and you find one with a “Seller Guarantee”—If your home doesn’t sell in 6 months, I’ll buy it! Sounds a little too good to be true, right? When provided by legitimate agents, these aren’t scams, but rather a genuine option if you need to sell your home quickly.

With enough time on the market, a good seller’s agent, proper staging and a marketing plan, most homes will sell in a seller’s market. That “time on the market” requirement can be a hang-up for some sellers though. If you are moving on a strict timeline due to a new job, divorce, inheritance sale, or any other reason, a guaranteed timeline can be a win-win. On the other hand, the purchase will likely be lower than market price so if you can afford the time, selling to your agent could be a terrible deal.

Common types of Guarantees

  • “Percentage of Value Guarantee”— The agent promises you a portion of the market value if the home doesn’t sell. Keep in mind that the promised percentage will be based on fair market value, fewer fees, and commissions, so it will come out to be a lower take-home percentage.
  • “Timeline Guarantee”—The Agent promises to buy your property if it doesn’t sell in a certain length of time. Usually, timeline requirements go together with price requirements, meaning that you likely must agree to a specific markdown plan, so your agent has the price they want by the end of the timeline. Given this markdown schedule, you likely will receive less than fair market value for your property, but you can be sure that it will sell within the specified timeline.
  • “I’ll Buy It Guarantee”—Usually, this type of offer comes from agents who work with a group of investors. Investors either want to re-sell your property or rent it out for profit, so you can expect to lose a percentage of the equity. 

The Real Win-Win
You will always get the best results from choosing a real estate professional that knows your market and can help you sell your home at true market value or higher through good advertising, proper staging and curb appeal. However, if the timing is more important one of these seller guarantee options could be the better choice for you. 

Thinking of Selling? Talk to your agent about all your options including any seller guarantees available to you.





Posted by Rachel (Hillman) Foy on 8/9/2017

Buy A common misconception amongst the general public is that using a real estate agent when purchasing a home will be costly. What consumers don't realize is that they won't actually be saving themselves any money by foregoing the use of a buyer's agent. Buyers may inaccurately assume that they'll get a better deal by working directly with the listing agent of a specific property they're interested in, rather than by adding a buyer's agent to the mix. This belief is grounded in the ideology that if there's only one agent involved, only one agent is being paid. While this is true, the money-saving theory behind this type of one-agent-transaction is being misconstrued. There is, in fact, only one agent being paid, in this case the listing agent, however, this agent will receive the full commission from both sides of the negotiation. The same monetary value is wielded whether one agent or two agents are involved in the contract making this alleged shortcut inconsequential. The drawbacks of dealing directly with a listing agent as a buyer, are however, substantial. The listing agent is contractually obligated first and foremost to the seller. The listing agent represents the seller's best interests by law. By hiring a buyer's agent, buyers are actively ensuring that their best interests are not an afterthought, and are on the contrary, of the utmost importance to their agent. If you are a potential buyer, looking to purchase a new home or make a real estate investment, allow a real estate agent to act on your behalf. A successful buyer's agent is not only obligated, but happy to hold you, the buyer, as his or her number one priority in every part of the purchasing process. As your buyer's agent, my job would be to help you, help you. How can I help you today?





Posted by Rachel (Hillman) Foy on 6/14/2017

If you're considering putting your house on the market, the job of helping you find a qualified buyer is an important one. The real estate agent you choose to market your home, schedule appointments, and provide you with day-to-day guidance will play a crucial role in the outcome of your sale.

In addition to picking an agent who has a successful track record of selling houses similar to yours, their overall attitude, communication style, and energy level can provide you with valuable insights into whether they're up to the challenge.

Here are three of the top reasons that a positive attitude is an indispensable quality in a real estate agent.

  1. When prospective buyers and agents tour your home, they will be influenced by several factors. While their main focus will be on the look and feel of your home, their opinions will also be swayed by your agent's presentation style. Your real estate professional should have a knack for helping prospects focus on the desirable aspects of a home, while downplaying its negative features. Although issues and potential problems with a property usually need to be acknowledged, a resourceful real estate agent will make sure the problem is kept in its proper perspective, rather than blown out of proportion. They'll also do their best to suggest cost-effective solutions. To the extent that it's possible and practical, a good agent will help prospective buyers imagine how much they'd enjoy moving into the house, customizing it to their personal preferences, and making the space their own. People will quickly pick up on the enthusiasm and attitude of your real estate agent, and will be consciously and unconsciously influenced by their verbal and nonverbal messages. Most, if not all, buyers will be quick to detect everything from authenticity and sincerity to indifference and lethargy in an agent. These traits should also be obvious to you when you're interviewing agents during the selection process.
  2. An optimistic, results-oriented real estate agent will tend to be more resourceful, proactive, and solution-oriented that one who focuses more on problems than solutions.
  3. Both enthusiasm and negativity are contagious, so your agent's attitude will have a direct impact on your own outlook. Since your responsibility as the seller is to keep your home and property looking its best at all times, discouragement and a loss of optimism can easily spill over into noticeable details like home cleanliness and staging.

Choosing a great real estate agent can potentially translate into a higher sale price and a shorter period of time that your home will be on the market. Since thousands of dollars are at stake, it makes good financial sense to pick an agent who possesses the necessary people skills, the relevant knowledge, and the professional expertise to bring you the best possible return on the sale of your property.







Rachel (Hillman) Foy