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July 2017

There are 13 blog entries for July 2017.

Over the years we've noticed some relatively common mistakes home owners make when putting their property up for sale. Unfortunately, each of these mistakes can cause a property to sit on the market and sell for well below its potential. Even worse are the emotional consequences that follow as a result. A bad listing experience can be emotionally draining and a huge source of anxiety and stress. 

The good news is all of these mistakes are preventable. You can avoid all of these common pitfalls by consulting with your agent well before you plan to list. Seek some proactive and professional guidance, and make the right choices that will lead to a successful sale.

5 home selling mistakes


Five Common Home Seller Mistakes

Below are 5 common pitfalls to avoid when selling

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Just about 150 years ago, Frank Lloyd Wright was born right here in Wisconsin. He went on to become a renowned architect, and many of his unique homes and buildings can be found in Madison. His belief that structures should be designed in harmony with the environment influenced other architects to adopt a "modern" style after World War II.

Many of these mid-century modern homes were built from the 1940s-60s, with an emphasis on being open and functional. They can often be identified by their flatter roofs, asymmetrical exterior and large windows that make nature the focal point.

The mid-century modern style has gained popularity in the housing market in recent years, and there are quite a few scattered throughout the Madison area - especially on

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Through the first half of 2017, the Dane County real estate market is setting new records in a continuation of the trends we shared earlier this Spring. Dane County properties are selling quickly. Inventories are low, and prices are increasing. Sales are declining in most locations due to low supply. Here's our market summary covering a few of the county's largest communities. 

Home Price Per Square Foot

The price per square foot is our best statistic for measuring property value because it's adjusted according to the square footage of each sold listing. As you can see in the table below, home values are historically high in every community we track. Prices are increasing by some large amounts, especially in Cottage Grove, Madison, and McFarland -

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There is a lot of discussion presently about green energy, and the use of renewable energy sources is increasing in the Madison area. One option available to homeowners is solar energy. Solar panels are being included in many new construction homes, but they can also be added to existing structures. It can make sense for a homeowner, especially if the roof faces south, and is not heavily shaded. 

"The cost for solar energy has dropped about 75% over the last 5 years," says Chris Collins, Regional Project Developer for SunVest Solar Inc.  "Many customers choose to amortize the cost of the solar installation into their mortgage. Customers who do amortize the cost of a solar electric system often find that their payments are less than what they would pay

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We recently blogged about the shifting summer real estate market, and how buyers and sellers should adjust their expectations accordingly. This confuses some people, because media headlines can lead us to believe the market is always in a crazy, hyperactive state. The truth is the market is constantly changing throughout the year.

Another thing to keep in mind about real estate headlines is most of the time they're based on old data. For example, very soon we'll be reading about the latest market data for closings that occurred in the month of June. The important thing to remember about the June data is it's based on offers that were written in the months of April and May. By default, most of the headlines we read are the result of market dynamics

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The National Association of REALTORS (NAR) has released it's 2017 Profile of Home Staging. The profile is based on a survey of several thousand agents and focuses on the impact of staging on the home selling process. 

Among the Key Findings:

  • 77% of buyer agents say staging makes it easier for buyers to visualize a property as their future home
  • 49% of buyer agents say staging a home increases the dollar amount offered
  • 62% of listing agents say staging a home decreases the time on market

 

Other Interesting Data

The survey also reveals only 8% of real estate agents hire a professional to stage their listings. Our real estate team falls within that 8%. We hire Debbie Lea to stage our occupied homes and The Cozy Home to stage our

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Here's the vision we have for our real estate agents as our team continues to grow:

We're known as being among the best real estate agents in Madison and South Central Wisconsin. Our clients trust us because they know we're competent, they know we care, and they know we devote extra time and attention to their goals.

The best part of our real estate team is the people. 

We're learning each new person who joins us is raising the bar for the team and influencing all of us to become better agents. We all have different personality types and different strengths, but we're all very similar in a few key ways, too. Here are 7 traits shared by the members of our team. 

Seven Characteristics Shared by our Real Estate Agents

  1. We have positive
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Tax strategies and tax preparation may not be the most exciting part of your business, but doing it well is crucial to your success. Meicher CPAs know this, and enjoy partnering with clients that have more complicated tax matters, like small businesses, real estate clients, and clients with larger investment profiles. Their CPAs specialize in a wide range of business models, so business owners can be confident that the CPA they work with will have some inside knowledge into what they do.

Every business, and even every owner can require different strategies. For example, some clients like to publicize their charitable giving. Others like to give generously, but keep their donations a secret. Both types can benefit from specific (and likely

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Even in a hot seller's market there are plenty of over-priced listings which won't sell until the owner gets realistic about pricing. For some sellers, that realization is happening right now. The over-heated spring market has given way to a more balanced summer market, motivating some owners to drop their price in order to get their property sold.  

Opportunistic buyers are pouncing on price reductions

Some buyers have given up on their search because they don't believe there are enough listings to go around in the summer market. Other more opportunistic buyers are staying in the game and acting immediately as soon as the right price reduction or right listing comes along. 

It's true, there are fewer new listings to choose from in the

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"Let's eat out." 

It's a phrase often uttered begrudgingly at the end of a long work day when there's little time – or motivation – to cook. But add an exclamation point and suddenly it takes on a new meaning.

Let's Eat Out! is a summer series of rotating food cart dinners at more than a dozen outdoor locations in the Madison area. People can stop by various parks from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, weather-permitting, until Aug. 3 to grab a bite to eat from nearly 30 local vendors.

"Let's Eat Out! promotes and advocates for the success of local mobile food entrepreneurs while bringing neighborhoods together and expanding access to local food," according to its Facebook page.

Even though many meals are made quickly, you don't

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