Most of this information is true for almost anyone who owns a home. Much of it is especially relevant for my local friends and clients. Living in what are viewed as trendy, affluent suburbs of New York City, there can be heightened pressure to keep your home very “décor current” for resale. Property taxes are considered to be high in New Jersey, so it is imperative that homeowners keep a close eye to make sure they aren’t paying more than their fair share.
The 5 things you NEED to know about protecting your home value in 2019 are:
1. Properly Taxes--Don’t pay more than your fair share.
Take the time to understand how the tax assessments in your community are determined, and if you feel your taxes are higher than other similar homes, take the time to appeal your taxes. My team will be holding a seminar on this topic on February 7, 2019 in Short Hills, NJ. Look for more details coming soon.
2. Don’t Defer Home Maintenance and Updating.
Buyers want homes that are “décor current” and in good condition. Home features like kitchen and bathroom style, as well as overall color choices, flooring, and window treatments, tend to take on a ‘dated’ look about 9-12 years after they are installed. Any realtor will tell you that when a buyer sees ‘dated,’ it can be the kiss of death for a seller who is looking for top dollar for her/his home.
It is easy to defer home maintenance when pressure on finances and lack of time make it difficult. If you find you are in this situation and don’t know where to begin or how to determine priorities, call my team to schedule an appointment. We can help you set priorities to protect your home's value.
3. Know The Value of Your Home.
This is easier said than done. There are many inaccurate online valuation tools that promise to help you determine the value of your home, but the best way is to have an on-going relationship with a realtor who can help you keep abreast of your local market, your neighborhood market, and assist you in ensuring that you keep your home in the condition that will enable the best resale outcome. Call my team to schedule a confidential consultation about the value of your home.
4. Where Do You Fall on the Real Estate Pyramid?
Knowing where you fall on the real estate pyramid can help you make sound decisions about your real estate investments.
Was your current home purchased simply because it was all you could afford? Are you now longing for a home that would provide some lifestyle upgrades like a better commute or aesthetics more in line with your tastes? Are you longing to unleash your creativity by building and designing a house that would be a legacy home for your children and grandchildren? Do you find yourself wondering about using real estate to build more wealth for you and your loved ones? How long do you expect to stay in your current home?
Keeping the answer to these questions firmly in mind can help you make the best financial decisions about how and when you should spend money on your home upgrading and maintenance. It can help you plan ahead to ensure that when you are ready to sell, you are able to get the top dollar.
5. Is Your Home a “Right Fit” For You?
Above all else, your home should be a place where you feel peaceful and able to enjoy time with the people you care about. Having a home that is a “right fit” for you and your needs contributes greatly to having a sense of calm when you walk in the door.
A home that is a ‘right fit’ should not only keep you dry and warm, but it should also feel like a good financial fit and should be pleasing to your eyes by being in-line with your personal tastes. You should feel at home when you enter your neighborhood, and your community. Hopefully, your home feels like a place where you have a sense of belonging. Sometimes life transitions make a home that was once a ‘right fit’ now too big, too small, or not emotionally or financially the right place to call home. Read about the HomeFit Scorecard here and then take the quiz for yourself here.
When your home isn’t a “right fit” it is time to begin to make a change. The start of a new year is the perfect time to educate yourself on what you need to do to make the changes necessary to have real estate help you to meet your goals and create the lifestyle that gives you peace and comfort.