Author Archives: semoninblog

Real Estate Online: The Problem With Too Much Information

Real Estate on the InternetThe Internet has drastically changed the world of real estate. Buyers can access listing information with the click of a button. They can take virtual tours through homes and study every detail of photos without having to step foot out of their own door. There is no longer a need to wait until the morning to inquire about a home, or play phone tag with a listing agent for days just to get more information. The Internet enables sellers to spark a greater amount of interest in their homes at a much faster rate. Their listing is accessible to anyone, from anywhere, at any time. Furthermore, real estate agents can stay better connected with their customers and potential clients, and utilize many tools that lead to better and faster transactions. The power and convenience the Internet has brought to the real estate industry seems like a dream come true. But don’t be fooled, there is no such thing as a perfect world. Just like anything else, when it comes to real estate, the Internet has its ups and downs. Having too much information, for example, can prove to be a great disadvantage.

Everyone has heard the saying, “You can’t believe everything you read of the Internet”. This is exceptionally true for real estate. The amount of information that is accessible online is endless, and consumers enjoy how easy it is to find it. However, posting content of the Web is just as easy as finding information on the Web. Consumers do not know exactly where information is coming from or how credible or relative it is to what they are looking for. For example, a popular real estate question consumers want answered is, “How is the market doing?” or “Is it a good time to buy or sell?” The Internet has encouraged people to find this answer out on their own, and no longer turn to the trusted professionals who can give them a quality answer. Countless amounts of online articles can be found surrounding this sort of topic, but could easily be written by someone who knows nothing about it. Good writers can fool many people into believing they are the expert on any given subject. Furthermore, most online articles relate to the big picture and not necessarily pertain to a specific market. For example, a person in Louisville may read an article about how the market is looking grim, when in actuality the Louisville real estate market may actually be picking up quite a bit. This could discourage that person to sell, when it is an excellent time to do so! Real estate agents that work in a certain market are the best resource for getting expert advice and insight regarding a specific real estate environment.

Consumers are also all too quick to believe any information they find online about a home for sale. The problem with the various websites dedicated to home searching is how up-to-date and accurate listing information actually is. Automated data feeds that pull from a number of different sources are used to populate many sites. In the process, certain details can be lost, incorrect, or not reflect changes in the listing, such as price.

The Internet is an exceptional tool to use during the home buying or home selling process that provides many benefits to buyers, sellers, and professionals. However, it is important to remember to be cautious and be sure the information you are getting is the right information.

 

Semonin Realtors® Participates in U.S. Military on the Move Rebate Program

Semonin Realtors® is honored to assist our military moving in or out of the Kentuckiana region with our U.S. Military on the Move program.

Military on The Move was developed by Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® to give members a low-cost alternative to existing military affinity programs such as USAA and Navy Federal Credit Union. It is a free real estate rebate and information program that allows military active duty, retire (20 years of service) and wounded warriors to earn cash back when they buy or sell a home with Semonin Realtors®.

For more information, click on the flyer below or visit www.usmilitaryonthemove.com/SemoninRealtors.

Active, Retired Military,& Wounded Warriors, Earn cash back when you buy or sell a home with Semonin Realtors®. Semonin Realtors® Military on the Move is a free real estate rebate program for active duty military, retired military (defined as 20 years of service) and wounded warriors. Offered in states where allowed by law. To be eligible you must register at www.usmilitaryonthemove.com/SemoninRealtors or call 855-575-2409.

Why Do People Sell Their Homes?

Top 5 Reasons For Selling A Home

  1. Home is too small. 19% of sellers in 2013 decided to make a move to upgrade to a home with more square footage. The majority of people who listed this as their reason for selling were first-time sellers.
  2.  Job relocation. 15% of all sellers in 2013 indicated they had to sell their home due to relocating for work.
  3.  Proximity to family and friends. 13% of sellers put their house on the market because they wanted to move closer to their loved ones.
  4.  A tie between downsizing and a decreased desire in neighborhood. 10% of sellers in 2013 thought their home was too large for their needs and sold their home to downsize to one with less square footage. The same percentage of sellers said their neighborhoods had become less desirable in some way or another, which gave them reason to move.
  5.  Recent change in family situation. 8% of people who sold their home in 2013 did so because something changed within the family. Such changes may include things like the birth of a child, marriage, divorce, or death.
Based on a 2013 study by the National Association of Realtors®
Reasons for Selling A Home

Weekly Market Snapshot

Housing inventory is low in the Louisville, Southern Indiana, and Elizabethtown markets! The low supply and higher demand from buyers makes now a great time to put your home on the market! You will have less homes to compete with and buyers eager to make a purchase.

GLARWeeklyInvStats_Page_2

HKARWeeklyInvStats_Page_2

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Semonin Realtors Raises Funds to Raise the Roof

A Look at the 2014 Semonin Realtors® Dessert Auction

Over the years, Semonin Realtors® has proudly sponsored the build of 16 Habitat for Humanity homes. Throughout the year a number of events are held to help raise funds to “raise the roof” on the 17th Semonin sponsored Habitat house. The annual Dessert Auction has proved to be a favorite among the Semonin family. This year’s event held Wednesday, April 16th, raised more than $11,500 for Habitat for Humanity!

Dozens of creative cakes and delicious desserts were donated by friends and family, as well as a number of local bakeries.

An exciting live auction is the day’s main attraction, but funds were also raised through an afternoon bake sale and raffle drawing. Here are a few photos from the day’s festivities. 

"Bunny Butt Cupcakes"

Easter Bunny Cake

Semonin Realtors Dessert Auction

Semonin Realtors Dessert Auction

Semonin Realtors Dessert Auction

Semonin Realtors Dessert Auction

Peacock Cake

Derby Cake

Strawberries and Creme

Peep Tree

Easter Cake

Bake Sale

Dessert

Spring Cleaning Essentials

Tidying up may come with a snap of your finger in Disney’s “Mary Poppins” classic, but in the real world, household chores take a bit more effort. Nevertheless, it sure can feel good when the job is done. Springtime is the season when everything comes to life. It is the time we can finally emerge from the hibernation the harsh winter forced us into. Spring is the perfect time to open the windows, let in the fresh air, and rejuvenate your home back to a clean, happy, and efficient environment. Your spring cleaning checklist can seem like a long one, but you will be glad when you complete each task.
To get you started, here are a few chores you should not forget to include:

Lighten Up Your Space

Spring cleaning is when you should tend to things you normally wouldn’t think of, like your light fixtures. Dirty lamps and chandeliers can really affect the light in your home, making rooms look dim and less vibrant. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, dirty bulbs actually give off 30% less light than clean ones! Thoroughly dusting lamp shades, chandeliers, and ceiling fixtures throughout your home, and wiping off bulbs with a dry cloth can brighten up your space and give your home the true light you have been paying for. You should also carefully take down those grimy ceiling fixture bowls that have collected dust and bugs throughout the year and wash them in the sink using warm water and dish soap. After drying them off you will be surprised what a difference it makes! While you are at it, tend to your window treatments as well, wiping off blinds with a damp cloth and vacuuming dust from curtains and drapes.Lighten up your space by cleaning light fixtures

Tend to the Overlooked Areas

Routine cleaning throughout the year leaves many surfaces in your home untouched. During your spring cleaning, take the time to tend to these areas and get rid of the dirt and dust that may not be as visible. Make sure your checklist includes dusting or washing places like, above cabinets, under furniture, baseboards and walls, and air vent coverings. Try thinking of all the surfaces, floor to ceiling, that you haven’t touched throughout the year, and use this time to tend to those areas.Spring Cleaning

Making More Room

Getting rid of old and unused items is a big part of spring cleaning. This allows you to rid of unnecessary clutter, make room for new things, and get organized again. As you store away winter clothes and accessories and unpack spring and summer attire, sort through things and separate those items you can donate or toss from those you need to keep. If you have a hard time throwing things out, a good rule of thumb is—especially when it comes to clothing—if you haven’t worn or used the item within the last year, you probably will not use it in the future. And remember, the more you get rid of, the more space you will have to put new things! Spring Cleaning

Good luck and happy cleaning!

The Big Four Bridge Opening in Indiana

The Big Four Bridge, which has been a popular attraction for Louisville residents since it opened on February 7, 2013, will finally be accessible from the Indiana side. After several extensive delays, the much anticipated completion is confirmed for April 30, 2014, the same day of the Kentucky Derby Festival’s Great Steamboat Race.

The Big Four Bridge connects Louisville, Kentucky with Jeffersonville, Indiana allowing pedestrians and bicyclists to easily enjoy the attractions on both sides of the Ohio River. The opening of the Jeffersonville ramp will give Louisville residents the ability to stroll across the river to enjoy the many great shops and restaurants Historic Downtown Jeffersonville has to offer. On the flip side, those from the Southern Indiana side will be able to easily enjoy Louisville’s esteemed Waterfront Park and many downtown attractions without the hassle of automobile traffic and finding a place to park their car. This recreational bridge is hoped to promote exercise and a larger sense of community among the area’s residents and tourists.

The Big Four Bridge

Photo Credit: Insider Louisville

How Do Buyers Search for Homes?

The real estate world has changed drastically since the good old days when searching for homes meant picking up the newspaper and diligently scanning through all the cramped text and tiny photos. Everyone has turned to the Internet for everyday tasks, including searching for homes.

How many buyers use each tool to search for homes (in percentage) Online Website: 89% Real Estate Agent: 89 Yard Sign: 51  Open House: 45 Mobile/tablet website or application: 45           Mobile/tablet search engine:  42           Online video site: 27 Print newspaper advertising:  5 Home Builder: 5 Home book or magazine: 5 Billboard: 5 Television: 4 Relocation Company: 3 Information Sources Used in Home Search From the National Association of Realtors  Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers - 2013

According to the National Association of REALTORS®, in 2013, 92% of homebuyers used the Internet to search for homes, and 43% actually found the home they purchased on the Web. These numbers have continued to rise year after year. As a seller, the more buyers you reach, the better chance you have of getting an offer. How do you reach more buyers? Easy; market your home with the tools buyers are using to shop, or in other words, put your listing where they will see it.

The chart to the right displays which tools buyers use most often to search for homes. Primarily focusing on the most popular, you should use a combination of these sources to reach a good amount of buyers. If you are using a real estate agent to list your home, ask questions about marketing tools: What websites will your listing be on? Is their website compatible for smart phones and tablets? How many open houses will you have? What kinds of tools will be used to specifically reach other real estate agents? All of these are valid questions to be asked and could influence your decision of which agent you should use.  

A knowledgeable seller, is a successful seller. Information like this will help you feel confident and informed through the difficult process of selling a home.

A Career In Real Estate?

Semonin Realtors Presents a Free Seminar! Where You Can… Be Your Own Boss, Set Your Own Hours, and Determine Your Income Is Real Estate right for you? This FREE seminar will help you decide. You probably have a lot of questions and this program is designed to get them answered. We will cover:  How to get started in real estate; Real Estate license requirements; Real estate schools; Startup Investment; Earnings potential; What Semonin REALTORS will do to insure your success! Upcoming Seminars: Wednesday, March 12, 2014 at 6:30 PM. Tuesday, April 8, 2014 at 6:30 PM. Thursday, April 24, 2014 at 6:30 PM. Wednesday, May 7, 2014 at 6:30 PM. Semonin Realtors Main Campus – Seminar Location 600 North Hurstbourne Parkway, Louisville, KY 40222

Not sure if Real Estate is right for you? Take a free Career Assessment!

 

Getting a Home Inspection

Home Inspector

The home buying process can seem like a lengthy one, but each step of the journey is important and should not be bypassed in effort of saving a little time or money. Sometimes it may seem as if a home inspection isn’t necessary, especially if a property appears to be in excellent condition. However, what you see in a house can be very deceiving. Buyers see a crack in a ceiling, immediately assume it is a big problem and get scared off, but a home inspector might say it is just cosmetic and can easily be covered up. A newly renovated home can seem flawless, so buyers opt out of getting a home inspection only to find out after closing that the home has major—meaning expensive—electrical or plumbing problems. Examples like these prove that home inspections are crucial to the home buying process.

A home inspector’s job consists of three main points:

  1. Evaluate a property’s physical and structural condition
  2. Identify items in need of repair or replacement
  3. Assess the remaining useful life of major systems

It is a good idea for you, or your real estate agent, to be present during the inspection. This allows you to ask questions, better understand the reasons or causes of certain issues, and learn what you need to do to fix them. The inspector can also point out areas of potential trouble and offer maintenance tips that can be very useful in the future. You can expect an inspection to take 2-5 hours, or a little longer for an older home, and to cost $200-$500 depending on size.

The inspection process enables buyers to discover any issues with the property before closing. Sometimes the results of provide reason for the buyer to back out of the purchase, but many detected problems do not necessarily have to be a deal breaker. Buyers can use the information reported to identify and prioritize items that need to be done, either immediately or in the future. In some cases, buyers can request the seller to make repairs or negotiate the sales price a bit more.

When buying a home, be smart, be cautious and never go without having a home inspected. If an inspector reports the home is in perfect condition and no issues need to be addressed, don’t consider the inspection to have been a waste of time and money, the peace of mind you will get makes it all worthwhile.

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