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Summer simplicity: Creating home elegance with less

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145 Palisades Drive, Signal Mountain, TN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nooga.com article, May 22, 2017

By Todd Henon, Broker, TN, GA, AL

 

 

 

 

 

Simplifying, minimizing—whatever buzzword you want to use—is trendy at the moment, with capsule wardrobes, tiny houses and digitally archiving part of the movement. The trend is a good one, not just for the pocketbook but for the mind. Studies have shown that we’re at our best in most aspects of life when we aren’t surrounded by unnecessary stuff.

As a Realtor, though, I see plenty of sellers clinging steadfastly to things that would add more value to their home packed away rather than lying out. With 90 percent of the homes I walk into, I tell the owners to put away half their things before we list it. Those who heed the advice tend to see a much faster sale.

Depersonalizing your home typically creates a faster sale for a few reasons. Firstly, your home is a commodity as soon as we put the sign in the yard. It is now an item for sale, with many scrutinizing eyes driving by and looking online. The entire world will be looking at the inside of your home. The market—the buyers—will decide what décor is acceptable. Sellers typically underestimate what buyers are willing to look past! For example, imagine you have a wine-themed kitchen with grapevines along the cabinets, wine-themed placemats, wine-themed curtains, wine-themed rugs and every type of wine glass available in the china cabinet. You’ve spent years tweaking and refining your style, and finally, it’s perfect for you. Now bring in a buyer who doesn’t drink, and your taste may have just killed the potential sale.

Secondly, buyers find it hard to imagine the home when your family photos are sprinkled throughout the house. Let’s face it, buyers look at your photos and jump to conclusions about your situation and why you might be moving, and are totally distracted. Just as you wouldn’t leave out medication for a health condition, don’t leave the opportunity for buyers to know your personal, private affairs.

Think of this from a buyer’s perspective—a family home of 30 years as opposed to a newly constructed model home. Both are cozy and furnished, but one feels like “someone else’s home” and the other is ready to become your home. Additionally, the family home of decades likely has items that haven’t been touched in years, whereas the new home has the potential to be filled with your own items and memories.

Thirdly, show off the features of your home. Don’t cover up the marble countertops with a seldom-used toaster oven. Pull up the rugs to show off the hardwood and tile floors. Clear off the stainless steel refrigerator, pick up, straighten up, and pack up.

But even if you aren’t selling now or anytime soon, jumping on the “less is more” bandwagon will benefit your life in more ways than you probably think. When you are not weighed down by “stuff,” you feel more agile and ready to transition easily into different jobs, stages of life or a greater feeling of calm. It’s also a timesaver: The National Association of Professional Organizers reports we spend one year of our lives looking for lost items. I’d rather spend that year fishing … wouldn’t you?

Simplifying tactics
One way to keep your clutter to a minimum is to make your attic, closets, basement and garage work for you. (Be careful with your garage, though; the U.S. Department of Energy reports that one-quarter of people with two-car garages have so much stuff in there they can’t park a car.) Create storage for things you need but don’t use regularly. Check out home improvement stores and Pinterest for countless space-saving storage options.

Downsize regularly. This means going through the kids’ toy chests and digging through your closet at least once a year, if not once a season. If they don’t play with it and you don’t wear it, donate it or sell it. Simplifying is a lifestyle you must practice regularly, as unnecessary objects have a sneaky way of coming into our homes, despite our best efforts.

Finally, a great way to keep a simple home is to have a donation/sale box in the garage or a closet so your family members have easy access to a place for things they no longer want or need. The temptation to shove something under a bed or in a drawer is minimized when everyone in your home knows where to take something they are ready to get rid of. Then, a few times a year, either donate or sell the unwanted items.

Implementing—and sticking to—these strategies will enhance your home, family and mind. And, when and if you do put your home on the market, you’ll be ahead of the curve in having your home market-ready.

More from Todd Henon Properties Team


Ready to learn your property’s value in today’s competitive market?

Click here to request your complimentary market analysis!


423.664.1914     |     ToddHenon.com

For more than 20 years, Todd Henon Properties has delivered the highest standard of intelligent, fair, and reliable service, nurturing lasting relationships though our unquestionable value and loyalty.

When you’re ready to SELL, BUY, or EXPLORE, we’re here for all the seasons of your life.

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Living through seasons: How to know when to upsize or downsize

Ready to learn your property’s value in today’s competitive market?

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Nooga.com article, May 22, 2017

By Todd Henon, Broker, TN, GA, AL

 

 

 

 

 

 

Life has many seasons, and with major changes in season sometimes come the need for big changes in your housing situation. As a Chattanooga Realtor for almost 20 years, more than half the phone calls I receive are from clients looking to upsize or downsize their lifestyles. Their most frequently asked question? When and how is the best way to do it.

Here are some key factors to consider:

Upsizing
If your family can no longer fit comfortably in your current home, upsizing is the logical next step. Being crammed into a space that doesn’t accommodate everyone’s needs is a recipe for discomfort and unhappiness.

But upsizing brings with it things to keep in mind. For example, you may love North Chattanooga, but if your two-bedroom, one-bath home there is at the top end of your budget, you’re going to have to look at other areas of town to get more square footage. This, naturally, leads to research you should conduct on home values, property taxes, schools performance and more.

Another thing to remember is that—in addition to a mortgage or rent payment that is most likely going to be higher—you will also need to budget for filling and maintaining more space. You’ll need to furnish extra rooms and potentially care for more yard space.

Other expenses likely to increase when upsizing include insurance, taxes and energy bills.

Use what you don’t like about your current house to make a list of needs (and wants) for your new home. Because selling a home too soon after buying it often results in a loss of money, you want to make sure that your next home will suit your family’s needs for the foreseeable future. It’s unrealistic to expect the home to accommodate all changes for the rest of your life, but it’s not unreasonable to expect a home to serve your needs well for five to seven years.

Some great areas of Chattanooga for larger homes are Signal Mountain, Hixson, Lookout Mountain, East Brainerd and Ooltewah.

Downsizing
Hands down the most common reason for downsizing I hear as a Realtor is that the core family has shrunk. The kids (yes, the same ones you upsized for 15 years earlier) have gone to college, and it’s tiresome cleaning, cooling and heating rooms no one is sleeping in or using.

It’s certainly understandable to want less house and headache as the golden years approach, but just as with upsizing, downsizing requires some looking ahead.

If your parents or other older relatives are in declining health, you may want to consider looking at properties that can accommodate them should the need arise for them to move in with you. Older relatives (and you, eventually) may need a home that has limited stairs to be sure it works well for years to come. Additionally, the kids who went off to college may boomerang back home afterward, or you may one day soon have grandchildren to fill bedrooms on overnight stays. So when looking at new homes, it may behoove you to choose a place that still has at least one extra bedroom—you wouldn’t want to end up unhappy in your new quarters because you downsized too much.

And don’t think that just empty nesters are interested in downsizing. If your current home is just too big, too expensive or partially unused, by all means, consider simplifying your life with a smaller home. It’s on trend right now for younger folks to live in smaller homes, which leads to investing resources in experiences and adventures rather than “stuff.”

Remember, too, that when you’ve made the decision to move to a smaller home, you will also have to decide what items you can live without. Downsizing refers to not just your home, but also your belongings. The “stuff” decisions aren’t limited to only what to eliminate, but how—you have an opportunity to help a charity or help fund your new purchase by selling items. Be ready to make this plunge before signing on the dotted line for a smaller home!

Downsizing in Chattanooga could be a condo on the Southside or downtown, a community like Stonebrook in East Brainerd, or simply a smaller home in your current area.

Whether you are feeling the need to upsize or downsize, in-town or on the outskirts, my team will be glad to help you navigate the decision-making and the journey. Here’s to new seasons!

More from Todd Henon Properties Team


Ready to learn your property’s value in today’s competitive market?

Click here to request your complimentary market analysis!


423.664.1914     |     ToddHenon.com

For more than 20 years, Todd Henon Properties has delivered the highest standard of intelligent, fair, and reliable service, nurturing lasting relationships though our unquestionable value and loyalty.

When you’re ready to SELL, BUY, or EXPLORE, we’re here for all the seasons of your life.

Contact Us


Search For Properties

 View Featured Properties

Like Todd Henon Properties on Facebook

Follow Todd Henon Properties on Instagram