cold weather tips for home buyers/sellers

There aren’t as many people out house hunting on bitterly cold winter days but those who are out are ready to buy today.

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Here are some winter tips for home sellers:

1.  Leave some lights on so we can open the lockbox and unlock the door.

2.  Remove the snow and ice from the walkway.  Clearing the sidewalk makes it less likely that someone seeing your home will fall on their a$$ and sue yours off.

3.  Place a walk-off mat near the front door that is big enough for four pair of shoes.  This small act of kindness will keep my feet dry because I won’t end up standing in a puddle made by my clients and it will keep your floor dry and your home cleaner.

4.  If your home is vacant please have it winterized, that means that you have the water turned off.

5.  Light in a home is a good thing, especially in the winter.  You want to make it look warm and inviting.   If you normally live like cave people with every blind drawn and every shade pulled consider making some changes so that your home will sell quicker and so you will get more money for it.

6.  If your home is occupied and you have a bunch of burglar alarms and maybe some barbed wire and a guard dog consider easing up on the red alert status.  (this has nothing to do with the weather . . I was on a roll)

Here are some tips for home buyers:

1.  Wear shoes or boots that are easy to slip on and off.

2.  Go to the restroom before you begin house hunting.  Homes that are winterized have no running water.

3.  If you are interested in a home that you saw in the dark please schedule an appointment to see it when it is light out before you make an offer.

4.  Most agents carry a flashlight but it is a great idea to bring your own.

With the Omicron virus surge expect to be asked to wear a mask when touring homes for sale.

A little anxiety is part of the process

I smile when I see agents advertising how they will make your next home sale or home purchase worry-free. I have found that no two people are the same and everyone experiences some anxiety when they buy or sell real estate.

People who are easily upset tend to get easily upset when they buy or sell real estate. People who are distrusting tend to be even more distrustful during a real estate transaction.

A big part of my job on a day-to-day basis with clients and with other agents is to be the person who doesn’t get excited. I am able to be the voice of reason and my goal is to always be the person who can calm everyone down when something doesn’t go according to plan.

Most people have some kind of emotional involvement in buying or selling a home.

No one can take all the stress away but we can remain calm and help others navigate through the stress.

If you can’t, recycle

Cat and tree
Cat helping with the Christmas tree

I just discovered this myself last year. Those pesky strings of lights that are not on the tree this year because they don’t light anymore can be recycled.

I took mine to the Ransey county household hazardous waste site Bay: West
5 Empire Dr, Saint Paul.

You can also bring them to the library which I found problematic last year as many of them were closed or partially closed due to the pandemic.

Between December 1, 2021 – January 20, 2022 string lights and miscellaneous electrical cords can be dropped off to be recycled at any of the following locations:

LOCATION ADDRESS
SP Regional Water Services 1900 Rice St.
Arlington Hills Library 1200 Payne Ave.
George Latimer Central Library 90 W. 4th St.
Dayton’s Bluff Library 645 E 7th St
Hamline Midway Library 1558 W Minnehaha Ave.
Hayden Heights Library 1456 White Bear Ave.
Highland Park Library 1974 Ford Pkwy.
Merriam Park Library 1831 Marshall Ave.
Rice Street Library 1011 Rice St.
Riverview Library 1 East George St.
Rondo Library 461 North Dale St.
Saint Anthony Park Library 2245 Como Ave.
Sun Ray Library 2105 Wilson Ave.
West 7th Library 265 Oneida St.

Accepted items: Holiday lights, electrical cords, telephone cords

NOT Accepted: Cord adaptors, battery packs, plastic rope lights, CFL lights

Also if you have a lot of cardboard from all those boxes that held the expensive stuff you got for Christmas you can drop them off at the Western District Police station. They do need to be flattened:

  • St Paul Police Precinct, Western District
    • 389 Hamline Ave N
    • Open Nov 30, 2021 – Jan 3, 2022
    • 24/7 Access
    • Visitor Parking Lot (well-lit)
    • ONLY Cardboard is Accepted
    • All Cardboard must be Flattened

Or

  • Recycling Drop-off Center
    • 309 Como Ave
    • Open Year-round
    • Mon-Fri 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. | Sat 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
    • All Household Recyclables are Accepted
    • All Cardboard must be Flattened

Add recycling to your list of things to get done before year end.

The calm before the home buying/selling season

sunrise
Winter sunrise

Things get quiet this time of year especially during the week before Christmas. People are busy and would rather wait until after the holidays to move or to put their house on the market.

Some folks are busy with year-end stuff at work and there may also be social events to attend.

Today is the shortest day of the year and soon the days will start getting longer, which is a good thing because most people don’t like looking at houses in the dark.

Shortly after the new year begins is my busiest time of the year. I’ll get calls from people who are planning on buying or selling real estate in the new year. Some won’t be doing much until the fall others will be moving in April.

For me, this is the calm before the storm. I’ll wrap up some projects, including a small one that I promised would be done by the end of the year. I’ll be getting my records in order for tax season and closing out 2021.

Oh and I don’t work at all on Christmas day or New Year’s Day. Is cooking and entertaining considered work?

Winter starts at 9:58 AM today.  Hopefully that means the end of the tornado season. 🙁