Real Estate 2020 – Safety First

As we all know buying or selling a home can be stressful under all circumstances and the current state of the world is far from ordinary. Sales have fallen off slightly, however there are still a lot of people buying and selling right now (if you want a better sense of the current market visit www.JeffHowardGroup.com/marketupdate). Since, as they say, “the show must go on”, Real Estate agents in the Las Vegas Valley have come up with a few ways for buyers and sellers to accomplish their goals safely.

If you’re ready to sell or buy, here are a few new “rules” to keep in mind when entering the real estate market in the era of social distancing.

Increasing Online Presence – One of the big changes to the real estate process is an increased dependence on online resources instead of in-person shopping. This includes lots of pictures and videos of properties being posted online, however many sellers are taking things even further than this. Recorded virtual tours, online conferences to allow buyers to ask questions about the property, and even livestream walkthroughs with a seller or agent showing the property are all increasingly popular options to supplement or even replace in-person showings.

Open houses have been cancelled due to social distancing and Realtors want to make sure everyone feels safe. In Nevada they have been banned for now. Online “virtual open house” conferences are popping up as one option to adapt to this, letting multiple potential buyers come together on Zoom or a similar video conference service at the same time to get a better feel for the property that’s being sold.

While this may not be enough extra information to decide if that is the home you want to buy, it is often enough to eliminate it. Photos tell part of the story, but a virtual walkthrough tells much more. Because of this, we have reduced the number of homes buyers needs to personally visit to find the right home for you and your family.

More One-on-One Time – Since online access and virtual tours show so much of what buyers want to see, there are a few that are signing on the dotted line without getting a chance to see a property in person first. Most agents are meeting with potential buyers by appointment only when a potential buyer still wants to visit the property in question, and everyone is encouraged to restrict the size of the meeting as much as reasonable. These appointments should be made with the understanding that if any participant feels the least bit under the weather on the day of the meet-up, then it will need to be rescheduled for another time.

Respecting Social Distancing – When buyers and agents do meet up, the process is usually a little different than it used to be. Social distancing rules are usually respected; meaning that everyone involved should stay at least six feet apart from anyone they don’t live with to prevent potential infection. Your agent is going to take his/her car separately and you’ll drive your family in yours. Discussions about the property and general Q&As are more likely to occur outdoors in the open air, and any greetings or introductions skip out on traditional handshakes. Masks, gloves, shoe covers and hand sanitizer are used, and many sellers go through and open all of the doors and windows to both maximize airflow and to allow interested buyers access to the entire house without having to touch doorknobs or other surfaces in order to see inside.

Closing Remotely – Remote closings are becoming much more common, taking advantage of video conferencing to bring everyone together without actually having to be in the same room. There may be some instances where people must meet in person to have some items Notarized, but digital signing is substituted when allowed because it removes that point of contact. When people do come together to sign, everyone will utilize social distancing and pens won’t be shared. 

We expect some of these practices to “survive” long after this incredibly disruptive virus is under control. If you have any questions about how to buy or sell in “the new normal” please contact me and my team & I will “hold your hand” through it… figuratively of course… not literally.

Real estate is still being bought and sold. Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail buildings or land? Are you ready to buy or sell a home? We can help you with that, safely… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day….Jeff

Great decorating ideas for renters and homeowners alike….

Most of the time there are strict guidelines renters have to follow in order to get their security deposit back, so rental homes might not look like what the renter wants to express.

Well that might have been so at one time, however I have some great decorating tips that are “low impact” which means changes are easy to do and undo when renters leave without causing harm to the home.  And by the way for owners of homes that like to change things around often, you may want to pay attention as well.

The first thing you should know about is removable hooks (they stick to the wall with removable adhesive) – I’m sure you have seen them advertised on TV.  Then there are removable wallpapers, tile decals and easy to install light fixtures.

You can create your own artwork on a canvas and display it on your wall with removable hooks and not harm the walls or paint job.  Your own artwork makes the home your space and shows your personality.  You can also show off a collection of posters from your favorite concerts or favorite parts of the world you have traveled to.

For the more adventurous there is removable wallpaper – I know it sounds complicated however it is not and very doable for renters and homeowners alike.  Hygge & West is one of the sellers of removable wallpaper.  It’s a great way to bring pattern and color into a room and break up the white walls.

Do you have boring tile in your kitchen or bathroom? Well now you can perk that up with waterproof decals in all sorts of patterns and colors – go to StickPretty.com.  You can create an interesting backsplash or add something to a bland bathroom.  StickPretty also sells removable window film which adds privacy and a wow factor to your otherwise plain windows.

Also get fun and colorful area rugs – they can go with you to your next rental or when you purchase your first home.

Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail buildings or land? Are you ready to buy or sell a home? We can help you with that… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day….Jeff

The Speeding Theatre presents “House of Tomorrow”

“House of Tomorrow” at the Super Summer Theatre Studio weaves together humorous, yet poignant, stories about seniors taking strength from their yesterdays, pursuing the passions of their tomorrows, opening the doors and windows of their lives (AKA their houses) to remodeling and keeping their dreams big and their hopes high! “House of Tomorrow” by Susan Shear will be presented by The Speeding Theatre!

super summer theatre

You’ll meet seniors navigating the uncharted waters of online dating, trying in vain to order a refill from a mail order pharmacy, responding to adult children concerned about driving safety, experiencing the stresses of forced downsizing— and see how  one senior’s view of a weekend together differs hilariously from her daughter’s take on it—as  well as other fun stories about seniors undaunted by the challenges life keeps throwing at them!

speeding theatre

Performance Dates: December 5th – 15th, 2019

Performances will take place at the Studio Theatre:
4340 S Valley View Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89103 (do not go to the Ranch)

To purchase tickets, go to:  www.purplepass.com/houseoftomorrow

 

Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail space? Are you ready to buy or sell a home? We can help you with that… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day…..Jeff

The iBuyer Breakdown

Are you being driven mad by phone calls from people wanting to buy your house?

Have you been seeing the ads everywhere and wondering what’s up with these so called “iBuyers”?

Well, I’ve got you covered. Check out the following video explaining what’s going on.

 

Don’t say yes too quickly and ALWAYS have someone in your corner to protect you!

If you have questions or are curious about how much your house is worth, don’t hesitate to call me.

Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail space? Are you ready to buy or sell a home? We can help you with that… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day…..Jeff

Friday the 13th! The PERFECT Time for Scary Movies!

I would have to say my favorite scary movie experience was watching Friday the 13th in the dark theater as a kid – it scared the H-E-DOUBLE-HOCKEY-STICKS out of me… which I  liked. I remember being disappointed by Friday the 13th 2 and actually walking out of the theatre for part 3 because it was just so lame.

Picture it – the movie opens up with some kids visiting Jason’s grave. They dig him up and they want to make sure he’s dead. So they take a long metal pole and jab it through his heart and leave – then lightning strikes… and you can figure out why I walked out of the movie. Come on! Give me a premise that’s sort of believable. (Sorry for Spoilers but trust me… I saved you.)

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My dad said he felt Psycho was scarier because during the time it was written, there was nothing else like it – and that terrified people. So, in the spirit of Friday the 13th I’m posing this question across a few different social media platforms:

What’s YOUR favorite scary movie and why?

Royalty Free by Vecteezy

 

Keep an eye out for a future blog post with the results!

 

 

Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail space? Are you ready to buy or sell a home? We can help you with that… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day…..Jeff

Attention Property Investors – Think about this. Smaller Apartments Are Doing Big Things For Developers

In the ever changing landscape of major cities across the country multifamily family developers are finding less is more.  What I mean by that; smaller units – like studio apartments are being grabbed up faster than larger ones. As rents are on the rise and urbanization has intensified, many developers have responded with smaller apartments and it is paying off.

Earlier in this decade the larger units were more popular, however now the focus has flipped. The vacancy rates for the smallest 25% of one-bedroom units have dipped below those for medium and larger units, according to CoStar. The average unit completed last year measured 941 SF, according to RENTCafé. That is 5% less than the average of 10 years prior.  “Smaller units have been gathering an outsized share of demand, especially in urban submarkets in major metros, which is simply due to the fact that rents are far above where they were at pre-recession highs, and these major metros have become really expensive,” CoStar consultant Robin Trantham said. “Renters choosing to live in the city have had to sacrifice square footage in order to do so.”

Building smaller units is a clear extension of the myriad of reasons that renters want to live in them. Urbanization has pushed rents up, and developers and residents alike have found smaller units satisfy each of their respective needs.  The cost of land in most cities has gone up tremendously and the Las Vegas area is no exception.

Over the last several years Las Vegas became a multi industry city – tech people have moved in as well as call center for large multinational companies as well as warehouses for companies like Amazon and Sephora.  Most of these people do not make huge amounts of money however need a place to call home.

 

 

Panoramic Interests is based in the expensive San Francisco Bay Area and specializes in small studios, one-bedrooms and two-bedrooms. Its average two-bedroom is about 440 SF, or “smaller than a lot of studios”.  Every rental market that has high rental costs can always benefit from the construction of smaller units because of the lower rents. For that reason, the performance of smaller floor plans in what CoStar defines as core markets — Boston, New York, Chicago, LA, S.F., Washington, D.C., and Seattle — is where the trend is most pronounced.

And I believe we can add Las Vegas to the list.  The cost of land has gone up so much in the last few years that newly built homes have become very costly.  If Las Vegas wants to accommodate all the people moving here that work for the new industries coming here – which includes lots of millennials, real estate investors in Las Vegas should be jumping on this trend.  Also this is not just a millennial thing – baby boomers, empty nesters and divorcees are looking for value in the marketplace.  Many of them are looking to down-size.

This is another way that the residential market is reinventing itself – to cater to the needs of these groups of people and there is a great need in Las Vegas on the supply side as well.  Increasing construction costs have put larger multifamily units on hold. The more appealing unit economics of micro-units, co-living or just smaller floor plans are becoming clearer to investors and developers around the country and Las Vegas investors and developers would be wise to get into this market.

So, all you property investors and developers contact me if you are interested in getting into this money making trend. Don’t want to own apartments because you don’t want to be a landlord? I get calls from investors looking to buy apartment buildings… build one and then sell it for a nice profit!

Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail space? Are you ready to buy or sell a home? We can help you with that… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day…..Jeff

10 Tips to Make Small Rooms Feel Larger

Some of the rooms in your home are spacious and others are may be smaller and more challenging to try to get a roomier feeling.  Here are some key tips to make the smaller rooms count:

  • Create a floor plan of the room so you can figure out which items of furniture will look best together in a small space.
  • Remember less is more – do not overstuff the room with things.
  • You can use a brighter color in a small space so it doesn’t look too dark.
  • Use white as an accent color to make the room look bigger – white ceiling, white molding and white cabinets.
  • The use of mirrors in small spaces instantly males a space look larger.
  • Make sure the furniture for smaller spaces is the proper size and scale for a smaller room – big and bulky pieces won’t work.
  • Use glass table tops – this will give a sense of weightlessness to the room.
  • Use different shapes – round tables work well in small areas.
  • A neutral lighter shade palette to make the room soothing and appealing.
  • Decide the function of this room – it’s a small space so plan wisely. If it’s an extra bedroom furnish it as so – don’t think of it as extra bedroom/computer room/den. It just will be crowded.

Are you ready to buy or sell a home? Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail space? We can help you with that… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day….Jeff

 

The Comeback of Vinyl Records

Back in the day, all recordings were vinyl and the sound was incredible (unless you loved an album so much you wore it out).  Then there were 8 track tapes, cassette tapes and along came compact discs.  Most people went crazy for these alternatives to vinyl, and poof vinyl faded away! Now we live in the digital music age… with Pandora, Spotify & more that make it fast and easy to listen to your music wherever you are.

But there’s nothing like the sound of good ol’ vinyl. Because vinyl records were no longer what the typical consumer wanted, for many years, you could buy them cheap! I could get just about anything I wanted for under $10 in an out-of-the-way store and maybe $1 at a garage sale.  Just recently a bought a pristine old album – “Strange Days” by the Doors – the gold label version – this is the original version – not a reprint… and not cheap anymore! Record stores have become more popular recently and, you can even buy vinyl of current artists. Sure we have The Rolling Stones and Jackson Browne… we also have Imagine Dragons and Meghan Trainor.

I have some tips for you on how to keep your vinyl in good shape.  First of all, be delicate with these treasures and try not to let your hands, or anything else for that matter, run across the vinyl’s surface.  It’s imperative you take the extra time to keep your hands around the outer edges of the record. Also use the turntable’s cueing lever, which was designed to help you aim for the gaps between songs and lower the needle slowly and safely, and get a slip mat to go between the record and the turntable.

Vinyl for blog
(this is my set-up … and about half of my albums)

To clean your vinyl use a carbon fiber brush—they are extremely soft and designed to attract dust particles rather than leave them behind.  And stick to products that are labeled for use on vinyl records—this includes D4 and Nitty Gritty Pure 2. I just bought a “Spin Clean Record Washer” after a suggestion by another audiophile. A big thing to remember is to make sure you sleeve up your albums as soon as you’re done listening to them.  Plus never stack your records!  Sit your records up right next to one another, just like books, in a climate controlled environment and you’ll never have to say goodbye to your vinyl ever again.

If you love music, and you have not done so already, I suggest you purchase a turntable and some vinyl. Sure, it’s a little more work… and your ears will thank you.

Do you have vinyl? Do you play them? Comment below!

Are you ready to buy or sell a home? Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail space? We can help you with that… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day….Jeff

Sweethearts Candy Hearts will not be available this Valentine’s Day – First Time in 153 Years

Remember when you were a kid and Valentine’s Day meant you hopefully would get a little bag of candy hearts were left on your school desk from the kid you had a “crush” on.  The sayings on the hearts you received were so important (even though it only meant something to you) – they made your day.

Well I have some sad news – you will have to wait until next year to exchange these classic hearts with you loved ones and friends.  The New England Confectionary Company (Necco) debuted the SweetHearts Conversation Hearts in 1866.  This past July Necco closed the company, however they sold the brand to the Spangler Candy Company – thank heavens.

Since it usually takes 11 months to produce the 8 billion candy hearts there was just not enough time for Spangler to create the hearts for sale in time for Valentine’s Day 2019.  On the bright side, Spangler’s CEO says the hearts will be available again in 2020, already giving us something to look forward to next year.

So this year buy your loved ones flowers, a cute stuffed animal, other types of candy, jewelry, theater or concert tickets or even a new home or investment property!!! (just kidding – a new home is more of a St. Patrick’s day gift…)  Happy Valentine’s Day to all.

Are you ready to buy or sell a home? Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail space? We can help you with that… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day….Jeff

Have you ever heard of a diaper raffle?

Here is an interesting and fun idea for a baby shower.  A friend of mine is expecting her second child so basically does not need many items that guests usually bring to a baby shower.  My friend heard from a friend of hers about a diaper raffle – What!!!?

The friend of my friend related how she had a baby shower for her second baby and decided to ask people bring diapers since she had baby things from her first baby.  One raffle ticket was handed out for every pack of diapers that a guest brought for the $50 gift card that was the prize and the winner was picked out of a hat.  This mom to be received probably $100 worth diapers at her shower… not bad, right? $100 worth of diapers for a $50 investment.

My friend that lives in Las Vegas decided to do this, however she stepped it up a notch (of course she lives in Vegas baby).  She sent out her invitations explaining the Diaper Raffle and offered the winner their choice of driving a luxury sports car for four hours or two tickets for a Las Vegas Golden Knights game – incredible options, right?

The day of her baby shower came, and her friends did not disappoint – She received an estimated $1,000 worth of diapers at her party and the raffle winner choose the Knights tickets, a win-win for everyone. My friend was thrilled but soon realized that a lot of the diapers were the same size.  That is when she called a national chain department store in Las Vegas and asked if she could exchange sizes.  They said of course as long as the package was intact and not open.  This is one happy mama-to-be.

I love hearing feel good stories and enjoy passing them on to my blog readers.  If you have a story you would like to share with me please let me know.

Are you ready to buy or sell a home? Do you have a need for commercial / industrial / retail space? We can help you with that… just call us at 702 SELL NOW or click on this link to my website http://www.702SellNow.com

Choose to have an amazing day….Jeff