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Weekends are the busiest time of the week for home shopping. No wonder! Saturdays and Sundays are the only days most people are available to view homes and open houses.  How do you deal with the crowds and traffic?
 
Here are a few tips:
 

• Plan your itinerary in advance. Don’t just drive around. Make a list of homes you want to see.
• If possible, stick to one geographic area. You’ll drive less and see more homes.
• Get a sitter for the kids. Only bring them along for those homes you’re seriously considering purchasing.
• Avoid the temptation of fast food restaurants.  Take a healthy snack you can eat in the car.
• Pace yourself. Don’t try to do too much in one day.

House hunting doesn’t have to be a stressful experience. With some planning, you can make it a fun adventure.

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Let’s face it. When you visit a home during a scheduled viewing or open house, you’re usually seeing it at its best.The rooms are tidy. The sinks are clean. The closets are organized and uncluttered. Even the lighting is set to its brightest.

 
That’s just good old-fashioned marketing.  However, not every house you see will actually look this way. For any number of reasons, a house on the market may be less than tidy, poorly decorated, and even in need of minor repairs. You may open the front door in anticipation, only to be immediately turned off by stains on the carpets, faded paint on the walls, cluttered hallways, and more.  First impressions form quickly. It’s easy tomake quick judgments and move on. But, you may be passing on what could be a dream home.
    
Don’t make that mistake.  Make your purchase decision based on a carefully considered second impression, not just your first. When viewing a house, imagine how it will look with a fresh coat of paint, some redecorating, the minor repairs completed, and your furniture adorning the rooms. You might just find that a home that doesn’t show well is really a diamond in the rough. (One caveat: Be careful of houses that don’t look like they’ve been well maintained. There could be issues lurking that may require expensive repairs or renovations. Always make a professional home inspection a condition of your offer.) 
 
There are advantages to buying a home that doesn’t show well.  They attract less interest and, therefore, less competition from other potential buyers.The listing price may be lower too. Need more ideas for finding the perfect home? Call today.
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The softening trend that we've been seeing over the last several months is continuing.   All market segments are showing reduced numbers of sales with single family houses showing the greatest slow down by a significant margin.  In most years, August is a slow month as people vacation so many eyes will be watching what happens in September!
 
Prices are generally holding steady.  But, when compared to last August, single family house prices are down 1%.  Keep in mind that prices are still WAY up compared to August of 2006.  But, this could be the beginning of a trend.
 
Inventory levels are still much higher than the same period last year but are not increasing at the same rate as they were earlier in the year.
 
Depending on where you are in the market, there are some opportunities emerging.  If you are entering the market you have greater choice and can most likely drive a harder bargain.   A weaker market is also the right time to consider moving up.  Want more details?  Just call me anytime.
 
At the end of September I will be publishing my next quarterly market analysis.  If you would like a copy of this report for yourself just subscribe here on my website.
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