Real Estate Spotlight: Quincy MA

Quincy MA

Located on a beautiful seafront, Quincy MA is fast becoming a place for people to move. There has been a major increase in the number of young adults, aka millennials in particular, deciding to move to Quincy. While the median age is still around 38 years old, more people in their late twenties and early thirties are becoming intrigued by the area. This is probably because it is just a short train ride from Boston, an area widely regarded as one of the great arts and historical cities of the USA. There is plenty to keep you entertained in Boston, but Quincy is the major drawcard. So what is the draw that is getting making Quincy so popular with today’s Generation X?

Is it their Love the Outdoors?

 

That’s one compelling reason to move to Quincy MA. Abounding with parks and green spaces, not to mention a lovely coastline, the town offers many outdoor activities. Boating around the 22 miles or so of coastline is one for the watersport fanatic. Parks are safe and green for family outings, and there are basketball courts where you can while away your down time with your friends. The Blue Hills around Quincy is a fantastic spot for running and hiking, perfect for any outdoor enthusiast.

Culture and History of Quincy?

 

move to Quincy MAIf culture and history are a draw for you, you might want to consider the value that Quincy has to offer in that department. It is of course home to Presidents John Quincy Adams and John Adams and the Adams National Historical Park in Quincy preserves the homes of both. You can learn about five generations of the Adams family when visiting the park, and that doesn’t include Morticia!  The Josiah Quincy House is well worth a visit as well to learn about this important revolutionary soldier and the impact he had on the American Revolution.

More military history and insights can be gained from the U.S. Naval Shipbuilding Museum. This museum offers the visitor a wonderful opportunity to get up front and personal with all things American Navy. It showcases some of the most important U.S. naval ships, and there is lots to take in about the lives of sailors and SEALS. If you want a real experience of naval life, get adventurous and spend a night on the U.S. Navy ship, the USS Salem as part of the overnight adventure program.

If that is not enough of the water for you, you can always take a relaxing boat ride on the Harbour Express. It goes all the way around the Boston Harbour and you can soak up wonderful views of the exquisite Massachusetts coast.

Restaurants and Nightlife in Quincy

 

Other things to do in Quincy include a gastronomic experience in Quincy MA, with a number of great eating spots to try out. Gunther Tooties is signaled as one of the good breakfast spots in town. For dinner try the Fours. Locals report the food to be “amazing”. If you are after a livelier dinner experience, you could always head down to The Water Club. Great cuisine mixed with an urban club feel, it is reported to be a “New York-style club” in the middle of Quincy.

Is it the Good Real Estate Prices in Quincy?

 

Aside from great culture and scenery, living in Quincy is reported to be great. The median home prices in Quincy show that although it is not the cheapest town in the US, it is fairly priced for the Massachusetts real estate market. If you are looking for homes for sale in Quincy you can expect to see much lower prices than in nearby Boston MA.  The median house price is $351 800, while rentals in the area are on an average of $1250 per month for a one bedroom apartment. Average income is around $64,155 which gives you an idea of where you can afford to stay. The area offers a great deal of good options for any any income level which is yet another reason why this area is such a draw to many.  If you are looking to purchase a home in Quincy MA – look over our 8 tips for home-buyers.  

Is it the Great Schools in Quincy?

The quality of a school system has a large impact on the draw for families.  Most home-buyers are looking to purchase a home in an area where their children can get a good education.  It has been proven over and over that the quality of a school system has a major impact on the real estate.  The quality of the schools in Quincy do play a part in the overall draw to the area.  The first class public schools in Quincy mean that families do not need to pay for a private school education, thus making the real estate in Quincy even more affordable.

Is it the Great Neighborhoods in Quincy?

 

Neighborhoods in Quincy vary but are generally lovely, young and oriented towards the start-up family life.  If its the beach you are after, you can’t go wrong with Houghs Neck. Resplendent with four beaches and lovely views this is a beach-lovers paradise. However, the locals are after one great product of Boston – lobsters. Houghs Neck, called the “Neck” by the locals, is famed for its lobster and fresh seafood. It’s also a very close-knit community. So if waves and community are what you are about, consider calling Houghs Neck home.

welcome to quincy

welcome to quincy

If you like a quiet corner, then Montclair may be the place for you. Residents say it is quiet and calm and is one of the more Asian neighborhoods in Quincy MA. Once tracts of farmland, now boarded by a golf course and an office park, it is a peaceful place to settle down in the area. Due to the presence of the MBTA rail lines, it is also highly convenient for commuters.

Whatever it is, Quincy Seems to Be the Place to Be.

 

No matter where you look at Quincy MA, it is definitely a trending city. Beautiful coastal vistas, plenty of history, and safe neighborhoods make it an ideal choice for those looking to settle down. From nature parks to basketball courts there are plenty of things to do in Quincy, and you are sure to fall in love with its charm.

Real Estate Around Wilmington NC

 

Wilmington NC Real Estate

If you are looking to move to a part of the country that offers a wide variety of lifestyles within a small geographic footprint, real estate in and around Wilmington NC should be on your short list. On the southeastern coast of North Carolina, between the Atlantic Ocean and the Cape Fear River, lies the city of Wilmington, along with Carolina Beach, Kure Beach and Wrightsville Beach. With a river, an island and three beaches, this area is a mecca for all things related to quality coastal living. Southern ambiance and a rich history are also still visible in the area’s historic sites, museums, and the now 230+ block National Register Historic District.

Searching For A Home Around Wilmington

property searchSearching for homes for sale online can be an overwhelming process.  With hundreds, maybe thousands of real estate websites delivering some level of listing inventory in and around Wilmington, how do you know which to use? Local real estate brokers have a unique and distinctive advantages over the nation-wide real estate sites.  The home search options of local real estate brokers have direct access to the MLS.  This lets them show you the most up to date listings, as soon as they hit the market.  You won’t see any expired listings or incorrect pricing information on the local broker sites either, because of that direct connection to the MLS.

A Little History

The Cape Fear River, named for its “rough waters and foreboding shoals” was originally explored in 1524 by the French explorer Verrazano. The first permanent settlement did not occur until 1725 with the creation of Brunswick Town, the first capital of the colony of North Carolina from 1726 to 1776. Later incorporated in 1899, Wrightsville Beach, once a summer retreat accessible only by boat and steam train before WWI, now flourishes with restaurants, shops, marinas, and resorts. Carolina Beach, incorporated in 1925 and Kure Beach, incorporated in 1947, are to the south, boasting their own historically-rich and cultural landmark pieces.

Historic Downtown Wilminton

Part of Historic Downtown Wilmington is the refurbished WWII Battleship NORTH CAROLINA, serving as a memorial for the 11,000 North Carolinians who died during the war. A self-guided tour features nine levels of living spaces, mess decks, gun turrets, powder storage, a sick bay, and more. There is also an Exhibit Hall and Observation Deck. View more of downtown from the water by riverboat or catamaran cruises. Take a carriage ride into culture on old brick streets to the sounds of jazz and beach music festivals, as Wilmington embraces a combination of influences from both the historic past and present.

Today the Downtow Wilmington area is rich with attractions and things to do, including the Riverfest celebration October 7-8. Wine and beer events, along with the self-guided Wilmington Fall Wine & Beer Walk in September, happen annually. Restaurants and breweries, featuring a landed barge bar and grill and a pub on the Cape Fear River, as well as coastal-themed breweries and island tiki bars are always open for an exciting and rich night life.

Family Based Homes

Are you more interested in quality family living? When searching for homes for sale in Wilmington, there are many varieties of subdivisions and new areas are being developed with varying price ranges to fit into almost any budget. There are neighborhoods with single family homes, brick cottages and old-style homes, condominiums and beach resort living.

Most have parks, playgrounds, dog parks many other outdoor recreational amenities. For example, Alamosa Place is located next to Newbury Woods and Whitney Pines in Wilmington and homes in this area can begin at about $104,000 and average 1,146 square feet. This subdivision has mostly traditional-style, single-story homes, according to the listings on from Buddy Blake – one of Wilmington’s top real estate brokers.

Neighboring community Newbury Woods also consists of single family, single-story homes, with a possible selling price beginning as low as $148,000 for an approximate average of 1,445 square feet. This area has a main thoroughfare, Newbury Way, with many cul-de-sacs. Smith Creek Park is nearby and features a fabulous pond with picnic shelters and is encircled by a walking trail.

Luxury Properties

Looking for something a little more adventurous or upscale? Anchors Bend neighborhood has a marina across the street on Middle Sound Loop Road that features 44 boat slips and a day dock, just a little over nine miles from downtown Wilmington. These homes may start at anywhere from $298,000 and up and can average 2500+ square feet. There are two main housing sections at Anchors Bend, both with single family homes, with siding or brick. Eventide Boulevard and Songbird Court make up “The Manors”, which features craftsman-style homes. Further toward the back of the neighborhood there are “The Cottages”.

Lake Renaissance is another unique community which centers itself around a large lake. Beautiful Magnolia trees line the entrance road until you come to the main loop, Lake Renaissance Circle. These single-story to two-story brick homes show an English-cottage influence in their building style as well. These homes may begin as low as $280,000 and may average approximately 2300 feet on the low range.

Waterfront Homes

beachfront homesThere are also, of course, the beloved beach front properties and condominiums. The Shell Island Resort condo community is located at the very north end of Wrightsville Beach. Behind the condominium is a pool with boardwalks that lead down to the shore. Most of the condominiums in this resort have ocean views. These incredible condos can begin as low as $162,000 and are within Wilmington city limits.

All in all, Wilmington is an American water-lover’s paradise. How many other cities can boast so many water features and amenities surrounding one city? The Wilmington greater metropolitan area can be a place to build your dream home, be a retirement destination, purchase your first home, or start a new beginning.  No matter what your dreams and goals, you can reach them in Wilmington, North Carolina!

8 Easy Tips For Homebuyers

Tips for home buyers

 

Buying a home can be a scary process.  Working a real estate deal can be overwhelming, whether you are buying or selling a home.   REALTORS know all of the secrets.

Here are 8 tips for home buyers:

  • Watch your money moving. For three to six months prior to purchasing your first home, it is best not to make any huge purchases, move your money around to different accounts, or open and new credit cards. Lenders are looking to make sure you’re reliable and all of these are red flags.
  • Bigger isn’t always better. Your eye might get caught by the biggest, newest, prettiest house on the block. But be warned: bigger is usually not better when it comes to houses. Sometimes the worst house on the block per square foot trades for more than the biggest house.
  • Don’t be over emotional. You cannot be tempted by your emotions in every aspect of a home. You might fall in love with certain things, but you’re going to end up heart broken. You may love the yard and wrap around porch, but the lot butts up to a busy mall. Trust your instincts with a home. It’s an investment, so stay calm and be wise.

home buying tips

  • Give your house a full check over. Hire a home inspector. This cannot be stressed enough. Spend around $200, but the third-party inspector will let you know about potential thousands if there’s something wrong
  • Pay attention to the neighborhood. Before you buy, know where you’re buying.  Many homebuyers have realized that they love their home, but find that the neighborhood wasn’t for them. Drive by the house at different times, check the school zones, find out where the nearest grocery store is, and check the crime rates.
  • Make a list of items to check: Make tons of copies of a checklist of your must-haves, nice-to-haves and other essentials. Bring them to every home you visit and take lots of pictures. This way you’re making sure the home is right for you.
  • Budget for everything: You aren’t just paying principal, interest, taxes and insurance. Figure the costs of utilities, upgrades and repairs, commuting.
  • Look beyond the staging: Staging is done for a reason: It works. Homes look far better when they’re staged. Always mentally try to remove the staging. Pay more attention to the layout of the house and the structure itself, because when you buy the home, the staging doesn’t come with it.

 

Real Estate in Granbury Tx

Granbury Texas

Just about a half-hour south of Dallas is the city of Granbury, Texas, renowned for waterfront real estate that includes both riverfront and lakefront homes for sale. Granbury is historic city and now offers some of the best waterfront real estate in the Dallas region.  Here are a few communities you are encouraged to check out.  .     

Harbor Lakes Homes for Sale

If you’re considering buying a home in Granbury, if your budget permits, one of the first places I’d suggest to look is Harbor Lakes.  A master-planned community at its best, Harbor Lakes includes such upscale housing as sprawling mansions and million dollar estates.  For home buyers on a lower budget, you can also get lower priced homes, as low as two hundred thousand, just further away from the water.  Harbor Lakes includes what is considered by many as Granbury TX’s best golf course, Harbor Lakes Golf Course.  If you live in Harbor Lakes, you’re living an exclusive lifestyle, one that provides all the best life has to offer.  

Mallard Pointe 

Mallard PointeMallard Pointe has a great country living experience, unique from many others.  Lots are all one acre or larger, flawlessly manicured, complete with numerous majestic native Oak and Cedar trees intentionally preserved to provide a more unique sense of living in connection with real nature.  Mallard Pointe …. a place for pride in life.  There is an abundance of park, golfcourse, and  lakefront property in Mallard point, which also features a community marina.  Many properties have beautiful views.  Truly a great place to call home.    

Pecan Plantation 

pecan plantationHere at Pecan Plantation, homes range from the ultra-luxurious, including mansion estates, ranches and farms, to beautiful single family homes and modern condominiums.  Vacant lots are still available for anyone interested in building a custom home.  Pecan Plantation offers fantastic river frontage on the Brazos River and is considered by many as the best community in Granbury.  As a private community, access is allowed through two checkpoints where community security is maintained.  Pecan Plantation has some of the best offerings of any community in the Granbury TX area that icludes shopping, golfing, boating, and its own airstrip!  

Timber Cove 

Loving life is what Timber Cove and The Lakes living is all about.  Minutes from the highway, gated communities and luxury .living await.  This is a great place for someone who wants to live in Granbury, but with as close of a drive to the big city as possible.  Here you will find fantastic neighborhoods that balance a closeness to the lake and the city, both at the same time. With homes for sale ranging from highly affordable to highly desirable, this is where to go to find the best Granbury has to offer, both here at Timber Cove & The Lakes.  

10 Things Your REALTOR Doesn’t Want You To Know

 

Realtor Secrets!

Selling a Home is Easy

Real Estate has changed since the internet.  There are some REALTOR secrets that your real estate agent doesn’t want you to know.  If a home is properly priced for the existing market conditions and is clean, it will sell with little to no effort.  In fact, the paperwork, photography, and data entry alone are more work than the actual selling of your home.  Websites like Zillow dominate the internet, so as long as your home is posted there, the whole world can see it.  It’s worth noting, posting a home for sale in Zillow is free. Its no shock that many real estate brokers speak negatively of Zillow

More “Buyer’s Agents” than you think Don’t Know What They’re Doing

Let me back up slightly, first. What I’m about to write is not intended to discredit any honest-to-goodness, really good Buyer’s Agent, because a really good Buyer’s Agent has skills that few REALTORS possess.  With that being said, many rookie real estate agents start out working with buyers first.  Buyers are easier to locate, and being a logical first place to start, it’s where most new REALTORS cut their teeth. Experienced Listing (or “Seller’s) Agents really dislike this, because it requires a lot of hand-holding with the inexperienced Buyer’s Agent… but yet they earn the same or more than the more experienced, skilled agent.  Our system tries to avoid that. Working with a rookie real estate agent in any capacity is full of potential pitfalls, and while many times the duty of the Seller’s Broker is usually the highest, but they’re often paid the lowest.    

 Commissions are ALWAYS Negotiable

Despite popular opinion, real estate commissions are not set by “the market” or the law.  Real Estate commissions are ALWAYS negotiable, and you SHOULD attempt to negotiate a lower commission if you think it’s reasonable.  Selling a home is a big deal, but so are REALTOR’S commission fees.  I’ve seen many a homeowner decide not to sell simply because they could not afford the REALTOR’S commission.  So, unless you’re working with a Discount Real Estate Broker, selling your home can be terribly expensive.   

Listing Commissions are Way Too High

realtorWhile I’ve always argued that a Listing Agent’s duty is the highest of all in any sales transaction, the commission is still too much money for what the job entails.  Selling a home does require the most experienced and competent REALTOR you can afford, but if you’re using a Discount Real Estate Broker, that same guy isn’t as expensive as everyone thinks he is.  

Most Buyer’ Broker Commissions are Also Way Too High

This follows our principle that most real estate commissions are already too high anyway – not to insult one specialty more than the other.  Again, while this may not apply to the experienced Buyer’s Agent, but when you’re new, finding buyers is always easier than finding sellers.  

Even Though Realtors May Work For The Same Company, There is Always Internal Agent Competition.

I learned this early in my days working for a big-box brokerage.  Just because a Real Estate Agent is associated with a big name, it doesn’t mean that business will come any easier or faster; in fact, it can be even harder.  There’s always someone competing for the same client, even in the same office.  In the old days, I frequently found myself interviewing against my own associates.  It’s one thing to compete with different offices, but it’s an entirely different thing to compete with people within your own office.  Even though you might earn some credibility working for a big name Brokerage, in the end, it’s an individual competition game.  There is a substantial cost (for the REALTOR) to work under any brokerage or franchise.  This substantial cost and internal competition goes towards making my next point:

Most of Your Commission Payment Does Not Go Towards Selling Your Home.  

discount real estate brokers

discount real estate brokers

It goes towards ongoing and future advertising, ultimately designed to bring in new clients. As stated before, the single largest expense of the REALTOR is based upon new client acquisition.  Whether it’s a small or large firm, or even an independent Agent, there’s no argument that their single greatest expense can be expressed in terms of marketing… not marketing to sell your home (sure, your home may be in a picture somewhere), but marketing to popularize the Realtor’s name.  We’re always trying to “brand” ourselves and draw in future business.  That’s how they found you, isn’t it? As a REALTOR myself, I believe I’m free to say that.  So many home-sellers aren’t going to like knowing up to 60% of the commission they pay, in one form or another, goes towards advertising for future clients, not the exclusive marketing and selling of THEIR home.  

 

Being a Successful Realtor is Expensive.

While it may not be too expensive to earn a Real Estate License, practicing as a REALTOR is.  There are countless fees, memberships, dues, commission splits (with the office and/or Brokerage, including the Company Franchise) that make Real Estate a very expensive profession.  Advertising is not cheap.  So unless your REALTOR gets business for free, it can be financially crippling to be competitive. This is where the Discount Brokerage has an advantage, because, instead of competing head-to-head with everyone for a decent commission, the Discount Broker is already the least expensive approach to selling your home, and for many, that low cost seals the deal.  

The Discount Brokerage Model

When Run Correctly, is Better Than Theirs.

Not only can it be better, but it insures the home-owner is paying only for what they need, not what their REALTOR or the Brokerage needs.  When sellers know they’re getting the best service and value for their money, something remarkable happens: “word of mouth” causes the business to grow and creates more happy clients.  Of all the forms of advertising available on the planet, word of mouth and a good reputation is, undoubtedly, the best.  

In a Seller’s Market, a Discount Brokerage is Your Best Choice.

Back before the 2007 recession, it was a near-nationwide, full-blown “seller’s market”.  I used to say to my clients, “I could pretty much put a ‘For Sale’ sign on my dog, walk it up and down the street, and I’d come back with three or four buyers.”  In a seller’s market, all the REALTOR has to do is to make the home sale known.  In today’s Internet dominated world, it now takes posting in only a few websites to get your home seen by millions of people across the country.  By eliminating all unnecessary overhead, a slew of fees and costs can be wiped away.  This is great for the seller and the Discount Broker!  Discount Real Estate Brokers eliminate most of the unnecessary fees and is free to pass the savings back to the home seller.  By charging such a significantly lower sales commission, it opens up many, many options and possibilities for the seller.    

Scams that Target Renters: Avoid these Rental Scams

Scams that Target Renters: Avoid these Rental Scams

Rental scams have been around for decades, and sadly, they don’t appear to be going anywhere. Here are some of the most common scams that target renters.

Landlord Foreclosure Scams  

If an owner has failed to make his payments, is served with a foreclosure notice and has vacated the property, he is expected to surrender the right to rent the property out. But out of desperation or spite, some resort to scamming unsuspecting renters instead. The landlord foreclosure scam involves renting the home out, pocketing the deposit and first month’s rent, and skipping town before anyone notices.

This leaves the bank to deal with the new renter, who is often asked to leave because there is no lease that the lender will honor. It doesn’t matter where the bank is located; they will find out that the tenant is not the owner when the sheriff knocks on the door, thinking he is going to evict the owner. He will contact the bank, and because there is no lease and their client is gone, they will evict whoever is living on the property.

Fake Landlord Scams

This rental scam long pre-dates the housing crisis. It involves con men assuming “ownership” of seemingly abandoned homes, advertising them for rent and collecting rent from the new tenants for as long as they can. Many times, homes that are owned by out-of-state landlords are the most vulnerable real estate properties for this kind of activity. As is the case with all rental scams, the occupants will eventually be evicted, whether or not they knew anything about the scam.  Many of these types of scams are rampant on websites like Craigslist.  To search for properties for sale and rent that are less likely to have scams, visit your local real estate broker’s website.  

The Slumlord Scam

This one is also as old as time. When a property is flagged for building code violations, including those pertaining to the safety of tenants, the tenants do not always necessarily know about it. Often, they are told by county officials who come to inspect the property. They may end up being evicted, all because their landlord did not want to pay for repairs to the building. This rental scam is most common in urban apartment complexes, but it can happen anywhere.  

Avoid Problems

The best way to avoid any of these rental scams is to find your home through a qualified real estate broker who has experience in Property Management.  Management companies usually verify ownership of the properties they manage, so it’s more than likely that you’d be safe renting from them.  They keep records of all transactions and all documents relating to the property, so if a problem ever arose, you’d be guaranteed to have copies of everything.  While there’s nothing wrong renting from a good owner, property management companies can frequently give you better and/or faster service than a regular landlord.  

What to do in Case of a Late Rent Payment

What to do in Case of a Late Rent Payment

Late payments are a constant in Property Management.  There are a couple of things you can do upfront to avoid late rent payments from your tenants. The most important thing you need is a late rent fee policy. This late fee should be uncomfortable but not totally unreasonable. If the dollar amount is too high, a judge will ultimately throw it out in court. Most property management companies don’t want to make it too easy for tenants to pay rent late. At one point, we started with a very low late fee and then raised the dollar amount with each day the rent was late. We found a lot of tenants continued to be one or two days late with their rent because they knew how many days they could afford to be late. We changed the policy to make the late fee high enough that our tenants have an incentive to pay the rent on time. We have also shortened the amount of time that late rents accrue, so even being one day late has become more expensive.

Have a Collections Policy

You also need to adopt a sound collections policy. You can call someone about the late rent, but that does not always work because people will purposely avoid your phone calls when they know you are calling about late rent. Our process starts with a phone call and then follows up with an email. The email escalates in its urgency and wording. The first email might be a nice reminder that rent is due and we have not received it yet. Then, we get more serious and remind the tenants that the rent needs to be paid or there will be repercussions.

Give a 3 Day Notice

It is always possible to issue a 3 Day Notice. We like to give the tenants the chance to bring in rent, but we don’t want to give them so much time that they live in the property for free while we begin the process of filing a 3 Day Notice. Sending the notice to tenants will often get their attention. Even if they do not understand the full legal requirements of the 3 Day Notice, they tend to get scared and bring in their rent.

Keep Track

Finally, we always keep track of the reasons we get for late rent. This helps us notice repeat offenders and the excuses they make. Our accounting department tracks all of this information, and we have found the same tenants are paying late again and again. Reasons are usually the same as well, so by tracking this information we can politely explain to the tenant that certain issues seem to be preventing the timely payment of rent more than once. It works for us and it helps us ensure our property owners are not taken advantage of.

 

If you have any further questions on how to avoid late rent payments, please contact us, and we’d be happy to talk to you about them.

Post provided by Management 1 Tri-Cities Property Management