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Real Estate Tips

Buying your first home? Trying to find a Realtor®? The Real Estate Insider column, published monthly in the various community newspapers, offers practical tips for homebuyers and sellers.

Tiny homes, big benefits

You may know them as granny flats, in-law units, backyard cottages or the technical name—accessory dwelling units (ADU). Whatever the term, this housing trend has become quite popular in the Portland region. If you’re thinking about building one on your property, where’s what you need to know.

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Pocket Listings

What’s this I have in my pocket? Oh, it’s a house for sale! Essentially, that’s the concept behind a term you may be hearing tossed around by Realtors® and would-be homebuyers alike: pocket listings.

The most basic definition of a pocket listing is a home, listed by a Realtor®, that is not on the RMLS™, this area’s regional multiple listing service. How does this happen? A few different ways.

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Buyer Success Strategies

The stories get crazier and crazier from the Realtors® that visit our office. Buyers who’ve made offers $50,000 over asking price—and still didn’t get their offer accepted. Lines of people waiting to get into homes that went on the market mere hours before. Then there’s the buyer who offered free pizza for life to sweeten the deal—and it worked!

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To Remodel or Not to Remodel?

Now that Real Estate Insider has been in our home for five years, the signs of wear and tear are beginning to show. The tiles in the kitchen floor are cracking, grout is crumbling, and we have the sneaking suspicion that the subflooring wasn’t laid properly.

But, what if we sell the house in the next few years? Is ripping out the floor and putting in a new one a good investment? Or, is it money down the drain?

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Realtors® Raise More than $1 Million for Charity in 2014

“Volunteering is the best part of my life…and my real estate career gives me that opportunity!” Sharlene Giard with RE/MAX Equity Group echoed the sentiments of many Realtors® when it comes to giving back to the community. Realtors® help people find the homes of their dreams but beyond that, many have made giving back and improving the community in which they live, work, and play an integral part of their life.

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4 Home Pricing Myths Debunked

So you’ve decided to sell your house — now comes the tricky part. Zillow has one opinion. Your neighbor down the street, another. Your mom thinks that whatever you do is absolutely correct, while your dad is sure you’re being swindled. We talked to our real estate experts to get the skinny on some common home pricing myths that need to be debunked.

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The Ups and Downs of Multiple Offers: February 2015

Fewer homes are on the market in the Portland metro area, while buyers are still out in full force, hoping to take advantage of the still-historically low interest rates on mortgage loans. The result? More and more reports of multiple offers on a home, especially if it is located in a desirable neighborhood and priced correctly.

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Should you stay or should you go? January 2015

Is 2015 the year to sell your home? As home prices rise across the Portland metro area, and stories of multiple offers start flying, some homeowners may be wondering if now is the time to make a move. Traditionally, many sellers wait until spring. However, our real estate experts cite many advantages to putting your home on the market now.

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Year-End Tax Tips for Homeowners: December 2014

If Einstein couldn’t figure taxes out, the rest of us non-genius folks are in trouble. But, as the year draws to a close, we’re here to help with a few reminders of tax tips that can save homeowners money.

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To Rent or Buy: November 2014

So your lease is up and the landlord raised your rent—again. Your death-metal loving neighbor got a surround sound speaker system for his birthday. And, you’re really tired of plain white walls. Is it time to make the leap to owning your own home?

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Three Things to Know about Online Real Estate Advice: October 2014

If you are buying your first house, or selling your home, you can turn to Google for advice. But here’s three things you need to know about navigating through those real estate search results online.

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Making Sense of Alphabet Soup: Green Home Certifications Demystified: September 2014

LEED. EPS. Earth Advantage Silver Certification. All signify that a home has met some measure of sustainability standards. But how “green” is a LEED home versus a Passive House? What should buyers look for…and why should they care?

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Buyers Be Ready: August 2014

“It’s a tough market for buyers right now, and buyers need to have their financial pre-approval ready,” said Teresa St. Martin, Windermere Stellar.

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What You Need to Know About Property Taxes: July 2014

It is said that people who complain about taxes can be divided into two classes: men and women. It’s also a given that the tax code is confusing to most of us. What do homeowners, as well as buyers and sellers, need to understand about their property taxes?

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Four Questions Answered on Home Inspections: June 2014

Buying a home is often the biggest purchase a household will make in their lifetime. There’s always a risk things will break or fail—but be proactive and mitigate that risk by paying close attention to your professional home inspection.

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Five Things You Didn’t Know a Realtor® Could Do for You: May 2014

Did you know there are nearly 150 things Realtors® may do for their clients during a single real estate transaction? Take a peek behind the scenes at five things your Realtor® can do for you that you may not know about.

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4 Tips to Help Buyers Succeed in Today’s Market: April 2014

It’s a great time to purchase your home—interest rates are low and there are financing options for most budgets. Follow our four steps to find that dream home.

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Top Three Seller Advantages: March 2014

What are the top three advantages sellers have in today’s real estate market? We consulted our real estate experts to find out.

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Beware of Zillow.com: February 2014

Zillow.com has captured the public’s imagination and interest when it comes to home values. And, it’s no wonder. For many, their home is the biggest investment they’ll ever make, and to be able to check out the value of that investment—as well as check out your neighbors’ property—with a click of a button is fascinating. But, if you’re thinking of selling your home, you’d be wise to listen to what your Realtor® has to say.

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