Showcase your Home with the Right Lighting

As a realtor, there are few things as important as making a strong and lasting impression on potential buyers. While there are many ways to accomplish this feat, there is one method that is often overlooked. Home staging is the act of presenting a home in the most visually appealing manner possible. One of the quickest and easiest ways to achieve this act is through the use of home lighting.

No matter how well kept and beautiful a home may be, it may come across as dark and dreary in the wrong lighting. The key is to strike a balance that leaves the home looking its very best no matter what time of the day. Below are a few simple tricks to help shine the spotlight on a home to hopefully impress any prospective buyers.

Start by adding some natural light. There’s just something about natural light that makes everyone feel better. By drawing the shades and allowing your home to be filled with as much natural light as possible, you can create an atmosphere that breeds positive attitudes and helps keep spirits high. Not only that, but natural light will also leave your home looking brighter and more appealing. Nobody wants to buy a poorly lit home, which is why many realtors boast the fact that a home has large windows which allows for more natural light.

Unfortunately, you can’t always trust Mother Nature to shine some sunlight down on a home when you need it. In that case you need to find a decent balance in the home through the use of home lighting fixtures. The trick is to use a combination of overhead and accent lights to achieve a warming glow that is pleasing to the eye. By combining accent lights like table lamps, floor lamps, and track lighting with overheard lights, you avoid the risk of the lighting becoming too harsh or too dim. By creating more than one lighting source, you can produce the perfect environment to showcase a home.

Lastly, you mustn’t forget the home’s exterior lighting set up. Use flood lights to illuminate the front of the home to help create a sharp contrast against the night sky. This will also help make the homes address number easier to make out from a distance. A homes address can sometimes be hard to spot, especially at night. Insuring the home is well lit should help eliminate that problem entirely. You may also use path lights to help lead the way to the homes front entrance. Not only does this help the buyer determine where the entrance is located, but it also helps cut down on the number of accidents that can be caused by tripping over plants or lawn decorations. Follow these simple tips and the home you’re selling will definitely shine brighter than the rest!

Case Shiller Boston Update

Well, if my ego weren’t big enough, it’s moments like this that help inflate it.   Back in April, I was stupid enough to make a market prediction, and put it in writing:

“I honestly believe that 3 months from now, this same graph (with new data), will look worse than it does now….. short of some brand new unforseen fiasco, we are currently looking at the worst of the market”

- Moi,  April 7th 2008

So from the cities I’ve been looking at, Boston, Chicago, and New York have all seen slight increases since they appear to have “bottomed out” between April and May (Achem!!!!  3 months later, I rule..).  Other cities that have seen bottoming out / price increases include:

Denver, CO,   -  Atlanta, GA  -   Chicago, IL  -  Boston, MA   -  Minneapolis, MN  -  Charlotte, NC   -  New York, NY  -   Cleveland, OH    -  Dallas, TX


Unfortunately, that still leaves 11 out of the 20 cities followed by the Case Shiller with decreasing home prices.  However,  for 7 of those Cities (as well as the composits as a whole), the rate of negative change in the prices, has been consistently decreasing as well for the last 4 months, which implies that they will be soon to follow the flattening/upward trend.

Which still leaves the somewhat consistent losers…. Phoenix AZ, San Diego & San Fransisco CA, and Tampa FL.    Boooo you guys… BOOOOOOOO!!!!!

Boston, you too can now own…

… in honor of the Celtics Win, your very own one of a kind, 2008 Larry Bird Replica Mustache!!!!

Yup… this one has nothing to do with Real Estate, but  a buddy of mine put up an auction on Ebay for the One of a kind Replica.  And how could I not do my best to add to the hype.

The bidding started at 99 cents and is currently riding the wave up to a whopping $8.50.  Mostly due to the excellent sales pitch as you scroll further down on the item listing.  I mean who doesn’t want to slap someone elses facial hair on their upper lip to improve their jumpshot???  I suspect the attention it got from a few other sites didn’t hurt either….

 The auction only has a week left, so Bid while you can!!!!!

Boston Home Prices - Case Shiller update

More recent Case Shiller data came out at the end of May.

And of the 20 Cities it looks at, The biggest losers over the previous month are…..

1) Miami with a 4.7% loss
2) Las Vegas at a close second, down 4.6%
3+4)San Fransisco and Los Angeles tied at a 3.7% loss
5) And the best of the worst five award goes to Tampa down 3.5%

Only two cities were up, Dallas Texas and Charlotte North Carolina. While Denver and Cleveland deserve honorable mention for prices dropping the least amount.

Boston, MA Real Estate prices were down 1.1%, falling back to their January 2004 prices.  And Detroit is the only City to fall to it’s 1999 prices (or even come close).

Graph time???…. Oh yeah….

Real Estate to be rescued by Fannie Mae?

Photos: 66-year-old woman boxer?

And she’s comming out swinging!!!  In an attempt to combat the current housing market conditions, good old Fannie has agreed to start purchasing and guaranteeing 5% down loans (and some 97%LTV) across the board, even in declining markets.  Effective as of June 1st, 2008.

“Across the board” doesn’t mean that Real Estate speculators will be getting the same deal,  it’s only for Single Family Homes which are primary residences.  But still, this is a HUGE improvement over the prior policy of requiring a larger downpayment for areas that were considered to be declining markets,  which was just further choking much needed potential homebuyers out of the market.

While it’s not a guarantee that everyone will qualify for 5% down loans, it’s a great indicator that we are seeing the end of the kneejerk reaction to the Mortgage Crisis we’ve been living through in the last year, and that the worst is already behind us.