Moving? Here’s some tips to make your trip easier

Whether you want to hire a moving company or handle the move yourself, Coldwell Banker can help.

When hiring a moving company, it is well worth the time and energy to make sure the company is reputable. The level of professionalism and integrity among movers can vary significantly. Ask your Coldwell Banker-affiliated sales associate, friends and co-workers for recommendations, then get estimates from several companies. Coldwell Banker can also coordinate a free moving estimate.

Coldwell Banker can help you if you choose to move yourself – from truck rental, purchasing boxes or simply being a good source for the “how-to” of moving – we are here to assist you before, during and after the purchase of your new home. Most agents are more than willing to offer advice and assistance to new homeowners; all you have to do is ask.

Planning Your Move

Moving requires extensive planning, particularly if you are relocating, but the experience does not have to be overly stressful. Here are some suggestions to help you organize:

  • If travel is involved, make your transportation and lodging reservations in advance.
  • Service the car for the trip, if driving.
  • File a Change of Address with the post office to have your first-class mail forwarded.
  • Give your new address to your bank (all accounts, credit cards), subscription services, friends and family, etc.
  • Contact utility companies in your new location to arrange for immediate service, and cancel your existing services.
  • Arrange insurance on the new home prior to the transfer of property.
  • Arrange for your present bank to establish credit references for new bank accounts.
  • Service appliances before moving.
  • Clean rugs and have them wrapped.
  • Discontinue deliveries, utilities, newspapers, garbage collection, etc.
  • Obtain copies or transfer your children’s school records.
  • Obtain records from doctors and dentists, including eyeglass prescriptions, dental X-rays and vaccinations.
  • Cancel club memberships.
  • Transfer car title registration, if necessary, as well as driver’s license, city windshield sticker and motor club membership.
  • Pay existing bills and cancel local accounts.
  • Check on personal items that may in a bank safe deposit box, at a neighbor’s house or in the repair shop (e.g. shoes, jewelry, small appliances and dry cleaning).
  • Arrange for transporting pets and obtain immunization records from the vet.
  • Return library books and anything borrowed from friends.
  • Notify the religious leader of your church, synagogue or mosque.
  • Plan for special care and needs of infants.
  • Arrange for transporting plants.
  • Review moving plans with your moving company representative including insurance for packing and unpacking, arrival date, payment agreement, shipping papers, etc.

One Week Before Moving

  • Clean and air out your stove.
  • Empty refrigerator and freezer 24 hours before leaving.
  • Place charcoal or baking soda inside refrigerator and freezer to dispel odors.
  • Dispose of all open cans and jars which cannot be tightly sealed.

On Your Moving Day

  • Leave a copy of your travel itinerary with a friend or relative.
  • Carry all currency, jewelry, personal papers (birth certificates, deeds and documents) and prescription medications.
  • Double-check closets, drawers and shelves to be sure they are empty.
  • Confirm hotel reservations.
  • Leave all old keys needed by the tenant or owner with your sales associate.

In Your New Home

Here are items you may need immediately upon arriving at your new home.

Cleaning:

  • Soap
  • Kitchen cleanser
  • Dish towels
  • Paper towels
  • Dish cloth
  • Steel wool pads
  • Sponge
  • Window cleaner
  • Scrub brush
  • Mop
  • Broom

Kitchen:

  • Paper plates, cups, napkins
  • Plastic knives, forks, spoons
  • Plastic pitcher for drinks
  • Small saucepan
  • Serving spoons

Bathroom:

  • Facial tissue
  • Toilet tissue

Buying and Selling in this Market

Buying and Selling a Home
Housing Market Forecasts

Last month it was reported that the 2018 National Housing Forecast indicated promising news for both buyers and sellers in the year ahead. When looking to purchase or sell a home in this current market, there are various timely facts to consider:

1. Low interest rates
The standard 30-year mortgage currently hovers at just above 4%, which is still historically low.

Realtor.com® reports that rates are projected to steadily climb by the end of 2018.

2. Demand remains high with tight inventory
It’s still a seller’s market in many parts of the country with Realtor.com reporting that unsold inventory is at a 3.2-month supply at the current sales pace, which is the lowest level since the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) began tracking in 1999. It’s not surprising then that anxious home buyers are driving-up prices in demand for housing.

3. Steadily increasing home prices
Realtor.com states that median existing-home prices for all housing types in December was up 5.8 percent from December 2016. The price increase marks the 70th straight month of year-over-year gains. For home buyers sitting on the fence, perhaps it’s time to jump-in before prices and interest rates possibly make entering the market more challenging. Home buyers should come prepared with pre-approved financing and the ability to make a quick purchase decision.

4. Consumer confidence is high
Consumer confidence hit its highest in 17 years this past November, according to the Conference Board’s index released last month. This is a result of low unemployment and stock market spikes that are anticipated to continue strengthening the economic foundation in 2018.

Market Action Reports – Boston and surrounding suburbs

Middlesex County

Barnstable
• Bristol
• Essex
• Franklin
• Hampden
• Hampshire
• Norfolk
• Plymouth
• Suffolk
• Worcester

• Boston
02113-North End
02115-Fenway
02116-Back Back
02118-South End
02130-Jamaica Plain
02210-Seaport
02114-Beacon Hill
02108
02129-Charlestown

 

 

If you are interested in selling your current property or purchasing your dream home, please let me know, I’m always here to help……..and look to helping you with your next steps!

Choosing the Right Agent for You

Buying a home is one of the most rewarding experiences any of us will ever have. It can also be one of the most challenging. Professional expertise and services can be a big help throughout the buying process.

If you’re buying a home for the first time, the process may seem overwhelming. And even if you’ve been through it several times, every move is different, and presents new challenges. This is why we recommend finding an agent affiliated with Coldwell Banker who’s an expert in your area.

Cpldwell Banker
Coldwell Banker is the largest Real Estate Company in the Word

One clear advantage is that you don’t have to go it alone. A good agent has the training, knowledge and experience to help you through each step of the process. This makes the process of finding, buying and moving into your new home as smooth, quick and enjoyable as possible.

Another advantage is that an agent is a valuable source of information about market trends, communities and neighborhoods, particularly regarding homes for sale in the area. Remember, not every home seller runs an ad in the local paper or puts a sign up in the yard. In fact, many homes actually sell before there is ever a need to advertise them.

In addition to market insight, your agent can provide access to complete, regularly updated information about every home listed by area agents through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

Finding the right agent

The key word here is “right.” While there’s certainly no shortage of qualified agents affiliated with Coldwell Banker to choose from, it’s important that you find one who can fully understand your wants, needs and individual tastes, and whose personal and professional judgment you respect.

Today’s buyers have more options when it comes to choosing the agent who can best represent them in a real estate transaction. Until recent years, virtually all real estate agents worked for the seller. Now, a growing number of buyers work are represented by a “buyer’s agent.” Most real estate companies throughout the U.S. have both a buyer and seller agency.

Before establishing a working relationship, the agent should present you with a disclosure statement. This explains what a buyer’s agent is and does, what a seller’s agent is and does, and what “dual agency” means. It is very important to remember that real estate firms are governed by state laws. These can vary, so disclosure laws may also vary.

We suggest talking to several different agents before choosing one. Below are some guidelines on what to look for.

Choose an agent who:

  1. Makes you feel comfortable.
  2. Knows the community and can point out schools, parks, playgrounds, shops and more.
  3. Can show you more of the homes available throughout the area.
  4. Subscribes to at least one Multiple Listing Service (MLS). This will give you access to information on approximately 90% of all homes for sale in the community.
  5. Has the products, services, and know-how to find the home right for you and market your present home for a faster, more profitable sale.
  6. Can offer you protection against unexpected repair bills in your new home.
  7. Can offer you warranty protection on your new home.
  8. Listens to your needs and responds as a friend, showing as much interest in your satisfaction as in making the transaction.

Once you’ve chosen an agent and started looking at homes, tell the agent everything you liked and didn’t like about each home. Point out the home’s shortcomings: Is it too small for your needs? Was the home perfect except for the carpeting? Details like this will help your agent narrow down the search.

Bear in mind, however, that real estate agents are frequently paid by the seller. The seller’s agent is obligated to help secure the best price for them. In addition, agents working for the seller may report any information you share with them to the seller, such as a willingness to pay a higher price. This is why you may want to be represented by a buyer’s agent, who will keep your input confidential. A buyer’s agent puts the interests of the buyer first, not the seller’s.

Boston’s Best Schools – 2012

Download Boston’s Best Schools – 2012.

 

An analysis of ALL 230 Boston area High Schools (defined as those inside the I-495 belt).

This top 50 ranking incorporates 13 data point including:

  • Graduation Rate
  • SAT / MCAS scores
  • Student-Teacher ratio
  • Number of Extracurriculars
  • Expenditure per Student

This information is meant to guide you to towns that not only fit your commute requirements, but will provide a strong education for the kids as well.
If you don’t see your town or school listed, not to worry! Visit www.bostonmagazine.com/schools and browse the online analysis tool breaking down the information by category. Boston Magazine publishes the Boston Schools ranking annually in its September issue. I’ve included the past 3 issues under the School category of my blog for your review, in case you’re interested in seeing more than this year’s “snapshot”.

Home Buyers Guide

REALTOR.com has written a Guide to buying your home. The guide gives you great tips for buying your new home including, defining what you’re looking for, getting pre-approved for a mortgage, making an offer and negotiating with the seller and more. The guide features a glossary of terms and a “Home Search Worksheet” to help you set your goals when you’re ready to start your search. Here’s a link to the Home Buyers Guide.